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The remains of this Portuguese fortress are among the oldest remaining European structures in all of Asia. A Famosa (Porta de Santiago) was built on a seaside hilltop in the early 1500s to protect the newly conquered land from returning to a sultanate or being invaded by other European nations. The hope was to create another Portuguese friendly port along the Spice Route to ease trade for merchant ships delivering between Asia and Europe. It later fell into Dutch hands, and was given to Britain to avoid being conquered by Napoleonic France. Britain feared its power if it were conquered, so chose to destroy it instead of fortifying it further. A single small gate was preserved at the request of Sir Raffles, the founder of Singapore.