First Anglo-Afghan War
The First Anglo-Afghan War was fought between the British East India Company and the Emirate of Afghanistan from 1839 to 1842. The British intervened in a succession dispute between emir Dost Mohammad and former emir Shah Shujah, whom they installed upon conquering Kabul in August 1839; the main British Indian and Sikh force occupying Kabul along with their camp followers, having endured harsh winters as well, was completely annihilated while retreating in January 1842. The British sent an Army of Retribution to Kabul to avenge their defeat, having demolished parts of the capital and recovered prisoners they left Afghanistan altogether by the end of the year. Dost Mohamed returned from exile in India to resume his rule, it was one of the first major conflicts during the Great Game, the 19th century competition for power and influence in Central Asia between Britain and Russia. The 19th century was a period of diplomatic competition between the British and Russian empires for spheres of influence in Asia known as the "Great Game" to the British and the "Tournament of Shadows" to the Russians.
With the exception of the insane Emperor Paul who ordered an invasion of India in 1800, no Russian tsar seriously considered invading India, but for most of the 19th century, Russia was viewed as "the enemy" in Britain. In 1832, the First Reform Bill lowering the franchise requirements to vote and hold office in the United Kingdom was passed, which the ultra-conservative Emperor Nicholas I of Russia disapproved of, setting the stage for an Anglo-Russian "cold war", with many believing that Russian autocracy and British democracy were bound to clash. In 1837, Lord Palmerston and John Hobhouse, fearing the instability of Afghanistan, the Sindh, the increasing power of the Sikh kingdom to the northwest, raised the spectre of a possible Russian invasion of British India through Afghanistan; the Russian Empire was extending its domain into Central Asia, this was seen by the East India Company as a possible threat to their interests in India. In 19th century Russia, there was the ideology of Russia's "special mission in the East", namely Russia had the "duty" to conquer much of Asia, though this was more directed against the nations of Central Asia and the alleged "Yellow Peril" of China than India.
The British tended to misunderstand the foreign policy of the Emperor Nicholas I as anti-British and intent upon an expansionary policy in Asia. The main goal of Nicholas's foreign policy was not the conquest of Asia, but rather upholding the status quo in Europe by co-operating with Prussia and Austria, in isolating France, as Louis Philippe I, the King of the French was a man who Nicholas hated as an "usurper"; the duc d'Orleans had once been Nicholas's friend, but when he assumed the throne of France after the revolution of 1830, Nicholas was consumed with hatred for his former friend who, as he saw it, had gone over to what he perceived as the dark side of liberalism. The Company sent an envoy to Kabul to form an alliance with Afghanistan's Amir, Dost Mohammad Khan against Russia. Dost Mohammad had lost Afghanistan's second capital of Peshawar to the Sikh Empire and was willing to form an alliance with Britain if they gave support to retake it, but the British were unwilling. Instead, the British feared the French-trained Dal Khalsa, they considered the Sikh army to be a far more formidable threat than the Afghans who did not have an army at all, instead having only a tribal levy where under the banner of jihad tribesmen would come out to fight for the Emir.
The Dal Khalsa was an enormous force, trained by French officers, was equipped with modern weapons and was considered to be one of the most powerful armies on the entire Indian subcontinent. For this reason, Lord Auckland preferred an alliance with the Punjab over an alliance with Afghanistan, which had nothing equivalent to the Dal Khalsa; the British could have had an alliance with the Punjab or Afghanistan, but not both at the same time. When Governor-General of India Lord Auckland heard about the arrival of Russian envoy Count Jan Prosper Witkiewicz in Kabul and the possibility that Dost Mohammad might turn to Russia for support, his political advisers exaggerated the threat. Burnes described Witkiewicz: "He was a gentlemanly and agreeable man, of about thirty years of age, spoke French and Persian fluently, wore the uniform of an officer of the Cossacks"; the presence of Witkiewicz had thrown Burnes into a state of despair, leading one contemporary to note that he "abandoned himself to despair, bound his head with wet towels and handkerchiefs and took to the smelling bottle".
Dost Mohammad had in fact invited Count Witkiewicz to Kabul as a way to frighten the British into making an alliance with him against his archenemy Ranjit Singh, the Maharaja of the Punjab, not because he wanted an alliance with Russia. The British had the power to compel Singh to return the former Afghan territories he had conquered whereas the Russians did not, which explains why Dost M
Second Anglo-Mysore War
The Second Anglo–Mysore War was a conflict between the Kingdom of Mysore and the British East India Company from 1780 to 1784. At the time, Mysore was a key French ally in India, the conflict between Britain against the French and Dutch in the American Revolutionary War sparked Anglo–Mysorean hostilities in India; the great majority of soldiers on the company side were raised, trained and commanded by the company, not the British government. However, the company's operations were bolstered by Crown troops sent from Britain, by troops sent from Hanover, ruled by Britain's King George III. Following the British seizure of the French port of Mahé in 1779, Mysorean ruler Hyder Ali opened hostilities against the British in 1780, with significant success in early campaigns; as the war progressed, the British recovered some territorial losses. Both France and Britain sent troops and naval squadrons from Europe to assist in the war effort, which widened in 1780 when Britain declared war on the Dutch Republic.
In 1783 news of a preliminary peace between France and Britain reached India, resulting in the withdrawal of French support from the Mysorean war effort. The British also sought to end the conflict with Mysore, the British government ordered the Company to secure peace with Mysore; this resulted in the 1784 Treaty of Mangalore, restoring the status quo ante bellum under terms company officials such as Warren Hastings found unfavourable. Hyder Ali ruled Mysore. Stung by what he considered a British breach of faith during an earlier war against the Marathas, Hyder Ali committed himself to a French alliance to seek revenge against the British. Upon the French declaration of war against Britain in 1778, aided by the popularity of philosopher Benjamin Franklin, the British East India Company resolved to drive the French out of India, by taking the few enclaves of French possessions left on the subcontinent; the company began by capturing Pondicherry and other French outposts in 1778. They captured the French controlled port at Mahé on the Malabar coast in 1779.
Mahé was of great strategic importance to Hyder, who received French-supplied arms and munitions through the port, Hyder had not only explicitly told the British it was under his protection, he had provided troops for its defence. Hyder set about forming a confederacy against the British, which, in addition to the French, included the Marathas and the Nizam of Hyderabad. In July 1780 Hyder Ali invaded the Carnatic with an army of 80,000, he descended through the passes of the Eastern Ghats, burning villages as he went, before laying siege to British forts in northern Arcot. The British responded by sending a force of 5,000 to lift the sieges. From his camp at Arcot Hyder Ali sent part of his army under the command of his eldest son, Tipu Sultan, to intercept a British force from Guntur sent to reinforce Colonel Hector Munro's army 145 miles to the north at Madras. On the morning of 10 September 1780, the British force from Guntur under the command of Colonel William Baillie came under heavy fire from Tipu's guns near Pollilur.
Baillie formed his force into a long square formation and began to move forward. However, Hyder Ali's cavalry broke through the formation's front, inflicting many casualties and forcing Baillie to surrender. Out of the British force of 3,820 men, 336 were killed; the defeat was considered to be the East India Company's most crushing loss in India at that time. Munro reacted to the defeat by retreating to Madras, abandoning his baggage and dumping his cannons in the water tank at Kanchipuram, a small town some 50 kilometres south of Madras. Naravane states in fact that it was a massacre with only 50 officers and 200 men taken prisoner, one of them Baille. Instead of following up the victory and pressing on for a decisive victory at Madras, Hyder Ali instead renewed the siege at Arcot, which he captured on 3 November; this decision gave the British time to shore up their defences in the south, despatch reinforcements under the command of Sir Eyre Coote to Madras. Coote, though repulsed at Chidambaram, defeated Hyder Ali three times in succession in the battles of Porto Novo and Sholinghur, while Tipu was forced to raise the siege of Wandiwash, besieged Vellore instead.
The arrival of Lord Macartney as governor of Madras in the summer of 1781 included news of war with the Dutch Republic. Macartney ordered the seizure of the Dutch outposts in India, the British captured the main Dutch outpost at Negapatam after three weeks of siege in November 1781 against defenses that included 2,000 of Hyder Ali's men; this forced Hyder Ali to realize that he could never defeat a power that had command of the sea, since British naval support contributed to the victory. Tipu defeated Colonel Braithwaite at Annagudi near Tanjore on 18 Feb 1782; this army consisted of 300 cavalry, 1400 sepoys and 10 field pieces. Tipu took the entire detachment as prisoners. In December 1781 Tipu had seized Chittur from British hands; these operations gave Tipu valuable military experience. Both Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan gained alliances with Ali Raja Bibi Junumabe II and the Muslim Mappila community and met with Muslim Malay from Melacca under Dutch service. During the summer of 1782 company officials in Bombay sent additional troops to Tellicherry, from whence they began operations against Mysorean holdings in the Malabar.
Hyder Ali sent Tipu and a strong force to counter this threat, the latter had pinned this force at Panianee when he learned of Hyder Ali's sudden death due to cancer. Tipu's precipitate departure from the scene provided some relief to the British force, but Bomb
Dutch East Indies
The Dutch East Indies was a Dutch colony consisting of what is now Indonesia. It was formed from the nationalised colonies of the Dutch East India Company, which came under the administration of the Dutch government in 1800. During the 19th century, the Dutch possessions and hegemony were expanded, reaching their greatest territorial extent in the early 20th century; this colony was one of the most valuable European colonies under the Dutch Empire's rule, contributed to Dutch global prominence in spice and cash crop trade in the 19th to early 20th century. The colonial social order was based on rigid racial and social structures with a Dutch elite living separate from but linked to their native subjects; the term Indonesia came into use for the geographical location after 1880. In the early 20th century, local intellectuals began developing the concept of Indonesia as a nation state, set the stage for an independence movement. Japan's World War II occupation dismantled much of economy. Following the Japanese surrender in August 1945, Indonesian nationalists declared independence which they fought to secure during the subsequent Indonesian National Revolution.
The Netherlands formally recognized Indonesian sovereignty at the 1949 Dutch–Indonesian Round Table Conference with the exception of the Netherlands New Guinea, ceded to Indonesia 14 years in 1963 under the provisions of the New York Agreement. The word Indies comes from Latin: Indus; the original name Dutch Indies was translated by the English as the Dutch East Indies, to keep it distinct from the Dutch West Indies. The name Dutch Indies is recorded in the Dutch East India Company's documents of the early 1620s. Scholars writing in English use the terms Indië, the Dutch East Indies, the Netherlands Indies, colonial Indonesia interchangeably. Centuries before Europeans arrived, the Indonesian archipelago supported various states, including commercially oriented coastal trading states and inland agrarian states; the first Europeans to arrive were the Portuguese in 1512. Following disruption of Dutch access to spices in Europe, the first Dutch expedition set sail for the East Indies in 1595 to access spices directly from Asia.
When it made a 400% profit on its return, other Dutch expeditions soon followed. Recognising the potential of the East Indies trade, the Dutch government amalgamated the competing companies into the United East India Company; the VOC was granted a charter to wage war, build fortresses, make treaties across Asia. A capital was established in Batavia. To their original monopolies on nutmeg, peppers and cinnamon, the company and colonial administrations introduced non-indigenous cash crops like coffee, cacao, rubber and opium, safeguarded their commercial interests by taking over surrounding territory. Smuggling, the ongoing expense of war and mismanagement led to bankruptcy by the end of the 18th century; the company was formally dissolved in 1800 and its colonial possessions in the Indonesian archipelago were nationalized under the Dutch Republic as the Dutch East Indies. From the arrival of the first Dutch ships in the late 16th century, to the declaration of independence in 1945, Dutch control over the Indonesian archipelago was always tenuous.
Although Java was dominated by the Dutch, many areas remained independent throughout much of this time, including Aceh, Bali and Borneo. There were numerous wars and disturbances across the archipelago as various indigenous groups resisted efforts to establish a Dutch hegemony, which weakened Dutch control and tied up its military forces. Piracy remained a problem until the mid-19th century. In the early 20th century, imperial dominance was extended across what was to become the territory of modern-day Indonesia. In 1806, with the Netherlands under Imperial French domination, Emperor Napoleon I appointed his brother Louis Bonaparte to the Dutch throne, which led to the 1808 appointment of Marshal Herman Willem Daendels as Governor-General of the Dutch East Indies. In 1811 Daendels was replaced by Governor-General Jan Willem Janssens, but shortly after his arrival British forces occupied several Dutch East Indies ports including Java, Thomas Stamford Raffles became Lieutenant Governor. Following Napoleon's defeat at the 1815 Battle of Waterloo and the Congress of Vienna, independent Dutch control was restored in 1816.
Under the 1824 Anglo-Dutch Treaty, the Dutch secured British settlements such as Bengkulu in Sumatra, in exchange for ceding control of their possessions in the Malay Peninsula and Dutch India. The resulting borders between former British and Dutch possessions remain today between modern Malaysia and Indonesia. Since the establishment of the VOC in the 17th century, the expansion of Dutch territory had been a business matter. Graaf van den Bosch's Governor-generalship confirmed profitability as the foundation of official policy, restricting its attention to Java and Bangka. However, from about 1840, Dutch national expansionism saw them wage a series of wars to enlarge and consolidate their possessions in the outer islands. Motivations included: the protection of areas held.
Nepal the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, is a landlocked country in South Asia. It is located in the Himalayas but includes parts of the Indo-Gangetic Plain. With an estimated population of 26.4 million, it is 48th largest country by population and 93rd largest country by area. It borders China in the north and India in the south and west while Bangladesh is located within only 27 km of its southeastern tip and Bhutan is separated from it by the Indian state of Sikkim. Nepal has a diverse geography, including fertile plains, subalpine forested hills, eight of the world's ten tallest mountains, including Mount Everest, the highest point on Earth. Kathmandu is largest city. Nepal is a multiethnic nation with Nepali as the official language; the name "Nepal" is first recorded in texts from the Vedic period of the Indian subcontinent, the era in ancient India when Hinduism was founded, the predominant religion of the country. In the middle of the first millennium BCE, Gautama Buddha, the founder of Buddhism, was born in Lumbini in southern Nepal.
Parts of northern Nepal were intertwined with the culture of Tibet. The centrally located Kathmandu Valley is intertwined with the culture of Indo-Aryans, was the seat of the prosperous Newar confederacy known as Nepal Mandala; the Himalayan branch of the ancient Silk Road was dominated by the valley's traders. The cosmopolitan region developed distinct traditional architecture. By the 18th century, the Gorkha Kingdom achieved the unification of Nepal; the Shah dynasty established the Kingdom of Nepal and formed an alliance with the British Empire, under its Rajput Rana dynasty of premiers. The country was never colonized but served as a buffer state between Imperial China and British India. Parliamentary democracy was introduced in 1951, but was twice suspended by Nepalese monarchs, in 1960 and 2005; the Nepalese Civil War in the 1990s and early 2000s resulted in the proclamation of a secular republic in 2008, ending the world's last Hindu monarchy. The Constitution of Nepal, adopted in 2015, establishes Nepal as a federal secular parliamentary republic divided into seven provinces.
Nepal was admitted to the United Nations in 1955, friendship treaties were signed with India in 1950 and the People's Republic of China in 1960. Nepal hosts the permanent secretariat of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, of which it is a founding member. Nepal is a member of the Non Aligned Movement and the Bay of Bengal Initiative; the military of Nepal is the fifth largest in South Asia. Local legends have it that a Hindu sage named "Ne" established himself in the valley of Kathmandu in prehistoric times, that the word "Nepal" came into existence as the place was protected by the sage "Nemi", it is mentioned in Vedic texts. According to the Skanda Purana, a rishi called. In the Pashupati Purana, he is mentioned as a protector, he is said to have taught there. The name of the country is identical in origin to the name of the Newar people; the terms "Nepāl", "Newār", "Newāl" and "Nepār" are phonetically different forms of the same word, instances of the various forms appear in texts in different times in history.
Nepal is the learned Sanskrit form and Newar is the colloquial Prakrit form. A Sanskrit inscription dated 512 CE found in Tistung, a valley to the west of Kathmandu, contains the phrase "greetings to the Nepals" indicating that the term "Nepal" was used to refer to both the country and the people, it has been suggested that "Nepal" may be a Sanskritization of "Newar", or "Newar" may be a form of "Nepal". According to another explanation, the words "Newar" and "Newari" are vulgarisms arising from the mutation of P to V, L to R. Neolithic tools found in the Kathmandu Valley indicate that people have been living in the Himalayan region for at least eleven thousand years. Nepal is first mentioned in the late Vedic Atharvaveda Pariśiṣṭa as a place exporting blankets, in the post-Vedic Atharvashirsha Upanishad. In Samudragupta's Allahabad Pillar it is mentioned as a border country; the Skanda Purana has a separate chapter, known as "Nepal Mahatmya", with more details. Nepal is mentioned in Hindu texts such as the Narayana Puja.
Legends and ancient texts that mention the region now known as Nepal reach back to the 30th century BC. The Gopal Bansa were one of the earliest inhabitants of Kathmandu valley; the earliest rulers of Nepal were the Kiratas, peoples mentioned in Hindu texts, who ruled Nepal for many centuries. Various sources mention up to 32 Kirati kings. Around 500 BCE, small kingdoms and confederations of clans arose in the southern regions of Nepal. From one of these, the Shakya polity, arose a prince who renounced his status to lead an ascetic life, founded Buddhism, came to be known as Gautama Buddha. By 250 BCE, the southern regions had come under the influence of the Maurya Empire of North India and became a vassal state under the Gupta Empire in the 4th century CE. There is a quite detailed description of the kingdom of Nepal in the account of the renowned Chinese Buddhist pilgrim monk Xuanzang, dating from about 645 CE. Stone inscriptions in the Kathmandu Valley are important sources for the history of Nepal.
The kings of the Lichhavi dynasty have been found to have r
The Maluku Islands or the Moluccas are an archipelago in eastern Indonesia. Tectonically they are located on the Halmahera Plate within the Molucca Sea Collision Zone. Geographically they are located east of Sulawesi, west of New Guinea, north and east of Timor; the islands were known as the Spice Islands due to the nutmeg and cloves that were exclusively found there, the presence of which sparked colonial interest from Europe in the sixteenth century. The Maluku Islands formed a single province from Indonesian independence until 1999, when it was split into two provinces. A new province, North Maluku, incorporates the area between Morotai and Sula, with the arc of islands from Buru and Seram to Wetar remaining within the existing Maluku Province. North Maluku is predominantly Muslim, its capital is Sofifi on Halmahera island. Maluku province has a larger Christian population, its capital is Ambon. Though Melanesian, many island populations in the Banda Islands, were massacred in the seventeenth century during the spice wars.
A second influx of immigrants from Java began in the early twentieth century under the Dutch and continues in the Indonesian era. Between 1999 and 2002, conflict between Muslims and Christians killed thousands and displaced half a million people; the name Maluku is thought to have been derived from the term used by Arab traders for the region, Jazirat al-Moluk, from the word malik. However, since the name itself has been mentioned in a fourteenth-century Majapahit eulogy, that predates the arrival of Islam in Maluku at the late fifteenth century, other sources claim that the name comes from a local language with the meaning "the head of a bull" or "the head of something large"; the Maluku Islands were a single province from Indonesian independence until 1999 when they were split into North Maluku and Maluku. North Maluku province includes Ternate, Tidore and Halmahera. Arab merchants began bringing Islam. Peaceful conversion to Islam occurred in many islands in the centres of trade, while aboriginal animism persisted in the hinterlands and more isolated islands.
Archaeological evidence here relies on the occurrence of pigs' teeth, as evidence of pork eating or abstinence therefrom. The most significant lasting effects of the Portuguese presence was the disruption and reorganization of the Southeast Asian trade, in eastern Indonesia—including Maluku—the introduction of Christianity; the Portuguese had conquered the city-state of Malacca in the early sixteenth century and their influence was most felt in Maluku and other parts of eastern Indonesia. After the Portuguese annexed Malacca in August 1511, one Portuguese diary noted'it is thirty years since they became Moors'. Afonso de Albuquerque learned of the route to the Banda Islands and other'Spice Islands', sent an exploratory expedition of three vessels under the command of António de Abreu, Simão Afonso Bisigudo and Francisco Serrão. On the return trip, Francisco Serrão was shipwrecked at Hitu island in 1512. There he established ties with the local ruler, impressed with his martial skills; the rulers of the competing island states of Ternate and Tidore sought Portuguese assistance and the newcomers were welcomed in the area as buyers of supplies and spices during a lull in the regional trade due to the temporary disruption of Javanese and Malay sailings to the area following the 1511 conflict in Malacca.
The spice trade soon revived but the Portuguese would not be able to monopolize nor disrupt this trade. Allying himself with Ternate's ruler, Serrão constructed a fortress on that tiny island and served as the head of a mercenary band of Portuguese seamen under the service of one of the two local feuding sultans who controlled most of the spice trade. Both Serrão and Ferdinand Magellan, perished before they could meet one another; the Portuguese first landed in Ambon in 1513, but it only became the new centre for their activities in Maluku following the expulsion from Ternate. European power in the region was weak and Ternate became an expanding, fiercely Islamic and anti-European state under the rule of Sultan Baab Ullah and his son Sultan Said. Following Portuguese missionary work, there have been large Christian communities in eastern Indonesia through to contemporary times, which has contributed to a sense of shared interest with Europeans among the Ambonese; the Dutch competed with the Portuguese in the area for trade.
With the declaration of a single republic of Indonesia in 1950 to replace the federal state, a Republic of South Maluku was declared and attempted to secede. And led by Chris Soumokil and supported by the Moluccan members of the Netherlands special troops; this movement was defeated by the Indonesian army and by special agreement with the Netherlands the troops were transferred to the Netherlands. Maluku is one of the first provinces of Indonesia, proclaimed in 1945 until 1999, when the Maluku Utara and Halmahera Tengah Regencies were split off as a separate province of North Maluku, its capital used to be Ternate, on a small island to the west of the large island of Halmahera, but has been moved to Sofifi on Halmahera itself. The capital of the remaining part of Maluku province remains at Ambon. Religious conflict erupted across the islands in January 1999; the subsequent 18 months were characterized by fighting between local groups of Muslims and Christians, the destruction of thousands of houses, the displacement of approximately
Battle of Plassey
The Battle of Plassey was a decisive victory of the British East India Company over the Nawab of Bengal and his French allies on 23 June 1757, under the leadership of Robert Clive. The battle consolidated the Company's presence in Bengal, which expanded to cover much of India over the next hundred years; the battle took place at Palashi on the banks of the Hooghly River, about 150 kilometres north of Calcutta and south of Murshidabad capital of Bengal. The belligerents were the Nawab Siraj-ud-Daulah, the last independent Nawab of Bengal, the British East India Company. Siraj-ud-Daulah had become the Nawab of Bengal the year before, he ordered the English to stop the extension of their fortification. Robert Clive bribed Mir Jafar, the commander-in-chief of the Nawab's army, promised him to make him Nawab of Bengal. Clive captured Calcutta; the battle was preceded by an attack on British-controlled Calcutta by Nawab Siraj-ud-Daulah and the Black Hole massacre. The British sent reinforcements under Colonel Robert Clive and Admiral Charles Watson from Madras to Bengal and recaptured Calcutta.
Clive seized the initiative to capture the French fort of Chandernagar. Tensions and suspicions between Siraj-ud-daulah and the British culminated in the Battle of Plassey; the battle was waged during the Seven Years' War, and, in a mirror of their European rivalry, the French East India Company sent a small contingent to fight against the British. Siraj-ud-Daulah made his stand at Plassey; the British, worried about being outnumbered, formed a conspiracy with Siraj-ud-Daulah's demoted army chief Mir Jafar, along with others such as Yar Lutuf Khan, Jagat Seths and Rai Durlabh. Mir Jafar, Rai Durlabh and Yar Lutuf Khan thus assembled their troops near the battlefield but made no move to join the battle. Siraj-ud-Daulah's army with 50,000 soldiers, 40 cannons and 10 war elephants was defeated by 3,000 soldiers of Col. Robert Clive, owing to the flight of Siraj-ud-Daulah from the battlefield and the inactivity of the conspirators; the battle ended in 11 hours. This is judged to be one of the pivotal battles in the control of Indian subcontinent by the colonial powers.
The British now wielded enormous influence over the Nawab and acquired significant concessions for previous losses and revenue from trade. The British further used this revenue to increase their military might and push the other European colonial powers such as the Dutch and the French out of South Asia, thus expanding the British Empire; the British East India Company had a strong presence in India with the three main stations of Fort St. George in Madras, Fort William in Calcutta and Bombay Castle in western India; these stations were independent presidencies governed by a president and a council, appointed by the Court of Directors in England. The British adopted a policy of allying themselves with various princes and Nawabs, promising security against usurpers and rebels; the Nawabs gave them concessions in return for the security. By the 18th century all rivalry had ceased between the British East India Company and the Dutch or Portuguese counterparts; the French had established an East India Company under Louis XIV and had two important stations in India – Chandernagar in Bengal and Pondicherry on the Carnatic coast, both governed by the presidency of Pondicherry.
The French were a late comer in India trade, but they established themselves in India and were poised to overtake Britain for control. The War of the Austrian Succession marked the beginning of the power struggle between Britain and France and of European military ascendancy and political intervention in the Indian subcontinent. In September 1746, Mahé de La Bourdonnais landed off Madras with a naval squadron and laid siege to the port city; the defences of Madras were weak and the garrison sustained a bombardment of three days before surrendering. The terms of the surrender agreed by Bourdonnais provided for the settlement to be ransomed back for a cash payment by the British East India Company. However, this concession was opposed by Joseph François Dupleix, the governor general of the Indian possessions of the Compagnie des Indes Orientales; when Bourdonnais left India in October, Dupleix reneged on the agreement. The Nawab of the Carnatic Anwaruddin Muhammed Khan intervened in support of the British and the combined forces advanced to retake Madras, but despite vast superiority in numbers, the army was crushed by the French.
As retaliation to the loss of Madras, the British, under Major Lawrence and Admiral Boscawen, laid siege to Pondicherry but were forced to raise it after thirty-one days. The Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle in 1748 forced Dupleix to yield Madras back to the British in return for Louisbourg and Cape Breton Island in North America; the Treaty of Aix-La-Chapelle prevented direct hostilities between the two powers but soon they were involved in indirect hostilities as the auxiliaries of the local princes in their feuds. The feud Dupleix chose was for the succession to the positions of the Nizam of the Deccan and the Nawab of the dependent Carnatic province; the British and the French both nominated their candidates for the two posts. In both cases, Dupleix's candidates usurped both thrones by two assassinations. In mid-1751, the French candidate for the Nawab's post, Chanda Sahib, laid siege to the British candidate Mohammed Ali's last stronghold Trichinopoly, where Ali was holed up with his British reinforcements.
He was aided by a French force under Marquis de Bussy. On 1 September 1751, 28
Indian Rebellion of 1857
The Indian Rebellion of 1857 was a major, but unsuccessful, uprising in India in 1857–58 against the rule of the British East India Company, which functioned as a sovereign power on behalf of the British Crown. The rebellion began on 10 May 1857 in the form of a mutiny of sepoys of the Company's army in the garrison town of Meerut, 40 miles northeast of Delhi, it erupted into other mutinies and civilian rebellions chiefly in the upper Gangetic plain and central India, though incidents of revolt occurred farther north and east. The rebellion posed a considerable threat to British power in that region, was contained only with the rebels' defeat in Gwalior on 20 June 1858. On 1 November 1858, the British granted amnesty to all rebels not involved in murder, though they did not declare the hostilities formally to have ended until 8 July 1859; the rebellion is known by many names, including the Sepoy Mutiny, the Indian Mutiny, the Great Rebellion, the Revolt of 1857, the Indian Insurrection, the First War of Independence.
The Indian rebellion was fed by resentments born of diverse perceptions, including invasive British-style social reforms, harsh land taxes, summary treatment of some rich landowners and princes, as well as skepticism about the improvements brought about by British rule. Many Indians rose against the British. Violence, which sometimes betrayed exceptional cruelty, was inflicted on both sides, on British officers, civilians, including women and children, by the rebels, on the rebels, their supporters, including sometimes entire villages, by British reprisals. After the outbreak of the mutiny in Meerut, the rebels quickly reached Delhi, whose 81-year-old Mughal ruler, Bahadur Shah Zafar, they declared the Emperor of Hindustan. Soon, the rebels had captured large tracts of the North-Western Provinces and Awadh; the East India Company's response came as well. With help from reinforcements, Kanpur was retaken by mid-July 1857, Delhi by the end of September. However, it took the remainder of 1857 and the better part of 1858 for the rebellion to be suppressed in Jhansi and the Awadh countryside.
Other regions of Company controlled India—Bengal province, the Bombay Presidency, the Madras Presidency—remained calm. In the Punjab, the Sikh princes crucially helped the British by providing support; the large princely states, Mysore and Kashmir, as well as the smaller ones of Rajputana, did not join the rebellion, serving the British, in the Governor-General Lord Canning's words, as "breakwaters in a storm."In some regions, most notably in Awadh, the rebellion took on the attributes of a patriotic revolt against European presence. However, the rebel leaders proclaimed no articles of faith. So, the rebellion proved to be an important watershed in Indian- and British Empire history, it led to the dissolution of the East India Company, forced the British to reorganize the army, the financial system, the administration in India, through passage of the Government of India Act 1858. India was thereafter administered directly by the British government in the new British Raj. On 1 November 1858, Queen Victoria issued a proclamation to Indians, which while lacking the authority of a constitutional provision, promised rights similar to those of other British subjects.
In the following decades, when admission to these rights was not always forthcoming, Indians were to pointedly refer to the Queen's proclamation in growing avowals of a new nationalism. Although the British East India Company had established a presence in India as far back as 1612, earlier administered the factory areas established for trading purposes, its victory in the Battle of Plassey in 1757 marked the beginning of its firm foothold in eastern India; the victory was consolidated in 1764 at the Battle of Buxar, when the East India Company army defeated Mughal Emperor Shah Alam II. After his defeat, the emperor granted the Company the right to the "collection of Revenue" in the provinces of Bengal, known as "Diwani" to the Company; the Company soon expanded its territories around its bases in Madras. In 1806, the Vellore Mutiny was sparked by new uniform regulations that created resentment amongst both Hindu and Muslim sepoys. After the turn of the 19th century, Governor-General Wellesley began what became two decades of accelerated expansion of Company territories.
This was achieved either by subsidiary alliances between the Company and local rulers or by direct military annexation. The subsidiary alliances created the princely states of the Muslim nawabs. Punjab, North-West Frontier Province, Kashmir were annexed after the Second Anglo-Sikh War in 1849; the border dispute between Nepal and British India, which sharpened after 1801, had caused the Anglo-Nepalese War of 1814–16 and brought the defeated Gurkhas under British influence. In 1854, Berar was annexed, the state of Oudh was added two years later. For practical purposes, the Company was the government of much of India; the Indian Rebellion of 1857 occurred as the result of an accumulation of factors over time, rather than any single event. The sepoys were Indian soldiers who were recruited into the Company's army