The British Raj was the rule by the British Crown in the Indian subcontinent between 1858 and 1947. The rule is also called Crown rule in India, or direct rule in India, the resulting political union was also called the Indian Empire and after 1876 issued passports under that name. It lasted until 1947, when the British Indian Empire was partitioned into two sovereign states, the Dominion of India and the Dominion of Pakistan. The British Raj extended over almost all present-day India, Pakistan and this area is very diverse, containing the Himalayan mountains, fertile floodplains, the Indo-Gangetic Plain, a long coastline, tropical dry forests, arid uplands, and the Thar desert. In addition, at times, it included Aden, Lower Burma, Upper Burma, British Somaliland. Burma was separated from India and directly administered by the British Crown from 1937 until its independence in 1948, among other countries in the region, Ceylon was ceded to Britain in 1802 under the Treaty of Amiens. Ceylon was part of Madras Presidency between 1793 and 1798, the kingdoms of Nepal and Bhutan, having fought wars with the British, subsequently signed treaties with them and were recognised by the British as independent states. The Kingdom of Sikkim was established as a state after the Anglo-Sikkimese Treaty of 1861, however. The Maldive Islands were a British protectorate from 1887 to 1965, India during the British Raj was made up of two types of territory, British India and the Native States. In general, the term British India had been used to also to the regions under the rule of the British East India Company in India from 1600 to 1858. The term has also used to refer to the British in India. The terms Indian Empire and Empire of India were not used in legislation, the monarch was known as Empress or Emperor of India and the term was often used in Queen Victorias Queens Speeches and Prorogation Speeches. The passports issued by the British Indian government had the words Indian Empire on the cover, in addition, an order of knighthood, the Most Eminent Order of the Indian Empire, was set up in 1878. At the turn of the 20th century, British India consisted of eight provinces that were administered either by a Governor or a Lieutenant-Governor, during the partition of Bengal the new provinces of Assam and East Bengal were created as a Lieutenant-Governorship. In 1911, East Bengal was reunited with Bengal, and the new provinces in the east became, Assam, Bengal, Bihar, there were 565 princely states when India and Pakistan became independent from Britain in August 1947. The princely states did not form a part of British India, the larger ones had treaties with Britain that specified which rights the princes had, in the smaller ones the princes had few rights. Within the princely states external affairs, defence and most communications were under British control, the British also exercised a general influence over the states internal politics, in part through the granting or withholding of recognition of individual rulers. Although there were nearly 600 princely states, the majority were very small
British India in 1880
1909 Map of the British Indian Empire, showing British India in two shades of pink and the princely states in yellow.