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The Marathas Part 6 Shivaji Bhonsle Section III: A Decade of Conquest

Canberra, 13 July 2021 Even though Shivaji had emphatically asserted his independence, he carefully maintained peace with the Mughals for two primary reasons. First was that from 1653, the Mughal territories in the Deccan were being governed by Aurangzeb, a prince of singular efficiency and vigour who no one wanted to offend. The second, Shivaji […]

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The Marathas Part 6 Shivaji Bhonsle Section II: Coming of Age

Canberra, 28 June 2021 Shivaji’s reluctance to do the ‘sajida’ was looked upon by the Adil Shah as an act of a spirited youth and overtly condoned. The sultan was also aware that Shahji, who was extremely loyal to him, was embarrassed by his son’s behaviour and therefore was content to let the matter rest […]

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The Marathas Part 6 Shivaji Bhonsle Section I: Tumultuous Early Years

Canberra, 21 June 2021 Shivaji was born in April–May 1627, with 6th/10th April being generally accepted as the actual date, at the fort of Shivner near Junnar. Some accounts give the date as Monday, 10 February 1630, which is the one accepted by Sir Jadunath Sarkar, a well-known historian and an acknowledged authority on medieval […]

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The Marathas Part 5 The Evolution of the Hindu Resurgence

Orange, NSW, 16 June 2021 The ancient Vedic Hindu culture continued to expand across the sub-continent till about 1000 A.D. Written records of dynasties that ruled the ‘known’ parts of the Indian sub-continent can be traced back to the Matsyapurana, which states that the Shishunaga dynasty ruled from about 640 B.C. and was followed by […]

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The Marathas Part 4 Shahji Bhonsle Section II: Later Career

Canberra, 6 June 2021 [The later career of Shahji Bhonsle and the early development of his son Shivaji overlap in several areas and took place in parallel. This chapter only examines the aspects of Shivaji’s early activities that had a direct bearing on Shahji’s actions and the progress of his career. Shivaji’s actions will be […]

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The Marathas Part 4 Shahji Bhonsle Section I: Entrenching Maratha Power

Canberra, 2 June 2021 Till the last few years of Malik Ambar’s defiance of Mughal invasion into the Deccan, the Muslim chronicles hardly mention the local Maratha chieftains and soldiers fighting against them. However, by about 1625, the loyalty of the Maratha chiefs was sufficiently important for the Nizam Shah to surreptitiously have Lakhoji Jadhav […]

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The Marathas Part 3 – The Rise of the Bhonsle Clan

Canberra, 30 May 2021 Even after the break-up of the Bahmani Sultanate, the general circumstances of the Marathas remained unaltered. A majority of the hill forts were garrisoned by Maratha chiefs—some in the service of one or the other Shahi kingdom and a lesser number by semi-independent Deshmukhs. By this time Muslim ranks—mansabs, depending on […]

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The Marathas Prelude: The Indian Sub-continent in the 16th Century – Politics & Religion

Canberra, 26 May 2021 Geographically, the 16th century Indian sub-continent was similar to modern India, with the inclusion of Afghanistan and Baluchistan within its borders. [In this series of books ‘From Indus to Independence: A Trek through Indian History’ that narrate the history of the Indian sub-continent, the countries of Pakistan created in 1947 and […]

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The Marathas Part 2: Framing the Maratha Identity

Canberra, 21 May 2021 By late 13th century, the Hindu revolt in Peninsular India against the invading Muslim forces was bitter and widespread. Even the learned heads of various Hindu ‘Maths’, monasteries, were involved in attempting to repel the Muslim invaders. Shankaracharya Madhav Vidyaranya, the head of the famous and powerful Sringeri Math, was one […]

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Indian History The Marathas Part 1 Origins – The Fundamentals

Canberra, 16 May 2021 The Southern Peninsula of the Indian sub-continent, lying to the south of the Rivers Narmada and Mahanadi can be divided into five principal parts—Dravid, Carnatic, Telangana, Gondwana and Maharashtra. The territorial extent of each of these parts is normally defined based on the spread of the language that is spoken in […]

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