Burmese, then the Mons, placed their nominees on its throne.When in 1404 the Burmese regained control King Narameikhla fled to Bengal, where he washospitably received by King Ahmed Shah of Gaur. During his exile he distinguished himself while assisting his host to repel in invasion, and when in 1426 Ahmed Shah died and wassucceeded by Nazir Shah the new ruler provided him with a force for the recovery of hiskingdom under the command of a general called in the Arakanese chronicle Wali Shah. Thisman, however, turned traitor, and in league with a disloyal Arakanese chieftain imprisonedNarameikhla. The king managed to escaped, and in 1430 regained his throne with the aid of asecond force supplied by Nazir Shah.He thereupon built himself a new capital named Mrauk-U in Arakanese, but usually known byits Arakanese name of Mrohaung. The date of its foundation is given as 1433. KingNarameikhla held his kingdom as the vassal of Gaur, and in token of this he and hisimmediate successor, though Buddhists, added Mahommendan titles to their Arakanese onesand issued medallions bearing the Kalima, the Mahommendan confession of faith.In 1434 Narameikhla was succeeded by his brother Mong Khari, also known as Ali Khan,who declared his independence of Gaur. His son Basawpru, who succeeded him in 1459, took advantage of the weakness of Barbek Shah of Gaur to seize Chittagong. He and his successorscontinued to use Mohammedan titles, no longer as a sign of vassaldom but as a token of theirsovereignty over Chittagong, which was recognized as lying beyond the geographical bordersof Arakan. Chittagong had for centuries been a bone of contention between Arakan andBengal and had often changed hands. It was not to remain in Arakanese hands until 1666,when the Mughals recovered it permanently for India.Basawpru was murdered in 1482 and his country entered upon a half-century of disorder anddynastic weakness. No less than eight kings came to the throne; most of them wereassassinated. Then in 1531 a capable young king, Mong Bong, came to the throne and Arakanentered upon a new era. It was in his reign that the first European ships made theirappearance, as raiders, and that the Portuguese free-booters (feringhi) began to settle atChittagong. It was in his reign also that Tabinshwehti revived Burmese power, conquered theMon kingdom of Pegu, and threatened the defences of his capital with massive earthworksand dug a deep moat, which was filled with tidal water from the river. Hence in 1544, whenthe inevitable Burmese attack came, although Mong Bong could not defeat the invaders in theopen, the defence works of Mrohaung proved an obstacle against which even the greatTabinshwehti could not prevail when he appeared before them in 1546. While the siege wason the Raja of Tipperah raided Chittagong and Ramu with his wild tribesmen. But againvictory was on the side of the Arakanese.When Mong Bong died in 1553 he had a force of Portuguese mercenaries. His sea power,based on Chittagong, was the terror of the Ganges region, and his country was on thethreshold of the greatest period of her history. But her somewhat spectacular rise was hardlydue to the genius of her rulers. It coincides with a period of weakness in Bengal, when, beforethe gradual extension eastwards of the Mughal power, the native governments of that regionwere tottering. The possession of Chittagong was the key to the situation; for Mong Bongleased to the feringhi who took service under his flag the port of Dianga on the seacoast southof the mouth of the river Kurnaphuli, some twenty miles south of the modern city of Chittagong. The place soon attracted a large European and Eurasian population which drove athriving trade with the ports of Bengal. But piracy and slave-raiding were the chief occupations of the feringhi, who gathered there in increasing numbers and before longbecame as great a source of embarrassment to the King of Arakan as to the Viceroy of Goa.Matters came to a crisis during the reign of Mong Razagri (1593-1612). He was the king whoemployed Philip de Brito in his attack on Nanda Bayin of Pegu, thereby opening the way forthe feringhi leader to make himself master of Syriam.