West Bengal is an Indian state, located in eastern region of the country on the Bay of Bengal. With over 91 million inhabitants, it is India's fourth-most populous state, it has an area of 88,752 km2. A part of the ethno-linguistic Bengal region of the Indian subcontinent, it borders Bangladesh in the east, Nepal and Bhutan in the north, it borders the Indian states of Odisha, Bihar and Assam. The state capital is Kolkata, the seventh-largest city in India, center of the third-largest metropolitan area in the country; as for geography, West Bengal includes the Darjeeling Himalayan hill region, the Ganges delta, the Rarh region, the coastal Sundarbans. The main ethnic group are the Bengalis, with Bengali Hindus forming the demographic majority; the area's early history featured a succession of Indian empires, internal squabbling, a tussle between Hinduism and Buddhism for dominance. Ancient Bengal was the site of several major Janapadas, while the earliest cities date back to the Vedic period; the region was part including the Mauryans and Guptas.
It was a bastion of regional kingdoms. The citadel of Gauda served as the capital of the Gauda Kingdom, the Buddhist Pala Empire and Hindu Sena Empire. From the 13th century onward, the region was ruled by several sultans, powerful Hindu states, Baro-Bhuyan landlords, until the beginning of British rule in the 18th century; the British East India Company cemented their hold on the region following the Battle of Plassey in 1757, Calcutta served for many years as the capital of British India. The early and prolonged exposure to British administration resulted in an expansion of Western education, culminating in developments in science, institutional education, social reforms in the region, including what became known as the Bengali Renaissance. A hotbed of the Indian independence movement through the early 20th century, Bengal was divided during India's independence in 1947 along religious lines into two separate entities: West Bengal, a state of India, East Bengal, a province of Pakistan which became independent Bangladesh.
Between 1977 and 2011 the state was administered by the world's longest elected Communist government. The economy of West Bengal is the sixth-largest state economy in India with ₹13.14 lakh crore in gross domestic product and a per capita GDP of ₹108,000. The state's cultural heritage, besides varied folk traditions, includes authors in literature, such as Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore. Kolkata is known as the "cultural capital of India". West Bengal is known for its enthusiasm for the sport of association football, as well as cricket; the origin of the name Bengal is unknown. One theory suggests that the word derives from "Bang", a Dravidian tribe that settled the region around 1000 BCE; the Bengali word Bongo might have been derived from the ancient kingdom of Vanga. Although some early Sanskrit literature mentions the name Vanga, the region's early history is obscure. At the end of British rule over the Indian subcontinent, the Bengal region was partitioned in 1947 along religious lines into east and west.
The eastern part came to be known be as East Pakistan, the eastern wing of newly born Pakistan and the western part came to be known as West Bengal, which continued as an Indian state. In 2011 the Government of West Bengal proposed a change in the official name of the state to PaschimBanga; this is the native name of the state meaning western Bengal in the native Bengali language. In August 2016 the West Bengal Legislative Assembly passed another resolution to change the name of West Bengal to "Bengal" in English, "Bangla" in Bengali. Despite the Trinamool Congress government's efforts to forge a consensus on the name change resolution, the Indian National Congress, the Left Front, the Bharatiya Janata Party opposed the resolution. However, the central government has turned down the proposal stating that the state should have one single name for all languages instead of three and the name should not be the same as that of any other territory. Stone Age tools dating back 20,000 years have been excavated in the state, showing human occupation 8,000 years earlier than scholars had earlier thought.
The region was a part of the Vanga Kingdom, according to the Indian epic Mahabharata. Several Vedic realms were present in the Bengal region, including Vanga, Rarh and the Suhma Kingdom. One of the earliest foreign references to Bengal is a mention by the Ancient Greeks around 100 BCE of a land named Gangaridai, located at the mouths of the Ganges. Bengal had overseas trade relations with Suvarnabhumi. According to the Sri Lankan chronicle Mahavamsa, Prince Vijaya, a Vanga Kingdom prince, conquered Lanka and gave the name Sinhala Kingdom to the country; the kingdom of Magadha was formed in the 7th century BCE, consisting of the regions now comprising Bihar and Bengal. It was one of the four main kingdoms of India at the time of the lives of Mahavira, founder of Jainism, Gautama Buddha, founder of Buddhism, it kingdoms. Under Ashoka, the Maurya Empire of Magadha in the 3rd century BCE extended over nearly all of South Asia, including Afghanistan and parts of Balochistan. From the 3rd to the 6th centuries CE, the kingdom of Magadha served as the seat of the Gupta Empire.
Two kingdoms – Vanga or Samatata, Gauda –
Mughal Architecture is the type of Indo-Islamic architecture developed by the Mughals in the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries throughout the ever-changing extent of their empire in the Indian subcontinent. It developed the styles of earlier Muslim dynasties in India as an amalgam of Islamic, Persian and Indian architecture. Mughal buildings have a uniform pattern of structure and character, including large bulbous domes, slender minarets at the corners, massive halls, large vaulted gateways, delicate ornamentation. Examples of the style can be found in modern-day India, Afghanistan and Pakistan; the Mughal dynasty was established after the victory of Babur at Panipat in 1526. During his five-year reign, Babur took considerable interest in erecting buildings, though few have survived, his grandson Akbar built and the style developed vigorously during his reign. Among his accomplishments were Agra Fort, the fort-city of Fatehpur Sikri, the Buland Darwaza. Akbar's son Jahangir commissioned the Shalimar Gardens in Kashmir.
Mughal architecture reached its zenith during the reign of Shah Jahan, who constructed the Taj Mahal, the Jama Masjid, the Red Fort, the Shalimar Gardens in Lahore. The end of his reign corresponded with the decline of Mughal architecture and the Empire itself. Mughal Architecture incorporates Indian elements with Islamic elements; some features common to many buildings are: Large bulbous onion domes, sometimes surrounded by four smaller domes. Use of white marble and red sandstone. Use of delicate ornamentation work, including jali-latticed screens. Monumental buildings surrounded by gardens on all four sides. Mosques with large courtyards. Persian and Arabic calligraphic inscriptions, including verses from the Quran. Large gateways leading up to the main building. Iwans on two or four sides. Use of decorative chattris. Mughal Architecture has influenced Indian architectural styles, including the Indo-Saracenic style of the British Raj, the Rajput style and the Sikh style. Agra fort is a UNESCO world heritage site in Uttar Pradesh.
The major part of Agra fort was built by Akbar The Great from 1565 to 1574. The architecture of the fort indicates the free adoption of the Rajput planning and construction; some of the important buildings in the fort are Jahangiri Mahal built for Jahangir and his family, the Moti Masjid, Mena Bazaars. The Jahangir Mahal is an impressive structure and has a courtyard surrounded by double-storeyed halls and rooms. Humayun's tomb is the tomb of the Mughal Emperor Humayun in India; the tomb was commissioned by Humayun's first wife and chief consort, Empress Bega Begum, in 1569-70, designed by Mirak Mirza Ghiyas and his son, Sayyid Muhammad, Persian architects chosen by her. It was the first garden-tomb on the Indian subcontinent, it is regarded as the first mature example of Mughal architecture. Akbar’s greatest architectural achievement was the construction of Fatehpur Sikri, his capital city near Agra at a trade and Jain pilgrimage; the construction of the walled city was started in 1569 and completed in 1574.
It contained some of the most beautiful buildings – both religious and secular which testify to the Emperor’s aim of achieving social and religious integration. The main religious buildings were the huge Jama Masjid and small tomb of Salim Chisti; the tomb, built in 1571 in the corner of the mosque compound, is a square marble chamber with a verandah. The cenotaph has an exquisitely designed lattice screen around it. Buland Darwaza known as the Gate of Magnificence, was built by Akbar in 1576 to commemorate his victory over Gujarat and the Deccan, it is 40 metres high and 50 metres from the ground. The total height of the structure is about 54 metres from ground level... The Haramsara, the royal seraglio in Fatehpur Sikri was an area; the opening to the Haramsara is from the Khwabgah side separated by a row of cloisters. According to Abul Fazl, in Ain-i-Akbari, the inside of Harem was guarded by senior and active women, outside the enclosure the eunuchs were placed, at a proper distance there were faithful Rajput guards.
This is the largest palace in the Fatehpur Sikri seraglio, connected to the minor haramsara quarters. The main entrance is double storied, projecting out of the facade to create a kind of porch leading into a recessed entrance with a balcony. Inside there is a quadrangle surrounded by rooms; the columns of rooms are ornamented with a variety of Hindu sculptural motifs. The glazed tiles on the roofs from Multan have an eye-catching shade of turquoise; the mosque was built in mother of Jahangir and wife of Akbar. Her Mughal name was Mariyam Zamani Begum and this being the reason that the mosque was built in her honor in Lahore’s walled city. Jahangir built his mother Mariyam Zamani Begum’s mosque and is just 1 km away from the tomb of Akbar near Agra at a place called Sikandra. Buland Darwaza dominates the landscape. Historian `Abd al-Qadir Bada'uni writes that it was the highest gateway in Hindustan at that time until today. A chronogram is inscribed on the central archway composed by Ashraf Khan, one of Akbar's principal secretaries that reads: In the reign of King of the world Akbar, To whom is due the order in the country.
The Sheikh-ul-Islam adorned the mosque. Which for its elegance deserves as much reverence as the Ka'ba; the year of the completion of this magnificent edifice. Is found in the words: duplicate of the Masjidi'l-Haram; the Tomb of Sheikh Salim Chishti is famed as one of the finest examples of Mughal architecture in India, built during the years 1580 and 1581, along with the imperial complex at Situated near Zen
India known as the Republic of India, is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh largest country by area and with more than 1.3 billion people, it is the second most populous country as well as the most populous democracy in the world. Bounded by the Indian Ocean on the south, the Arabian Sea on the southwest, the Bay of Bengal on the southeast, it shares land borders with Pakistan to the west. In the Indian Ocean, India is in the vicinity of Sri Lanka and the Maldives, while its Andaman and Nicobar Islands share a maritime border with Thailand and Indonesia; the Indian subcontinent was home to the urban Indus Valley Civilisation of the 3rd millennium BCE. In the following millennium, the oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism began to be composed. Social stratification, based on caste, emerged in the first millennium BCE, Buddhism and Jainism arose. Early political consolidations took place under the Gupta empires. In the medieval era, Zoroastrianism and Islam arrived, Sikhism emerged, all adding to the region's diverse culture.
Much of the north fell to the Delhi Sultanate. The economy expanded in the 17th century in the Mughal Empire. In the mid-18th century, the subcontinent came under British East India Company rule, in the mid-19th under British Crown rule. A nationalist movement emerged in the late 19th century, which under Mahatma Gandhi, was noted for nonviolent resistance and led to India's independence in 1947. In 2017, the Indian economy was the world's sixth largest by nominal GDP and third largest by purchasing power parity. Following market-based economic reforms in 1991, India became one of the fastest-growing major economies and is considered a newly industrialised country. However, it continues to face the challenges of poverty, corruption and inadequate public healthcare. A nuclear weapons state and regional power, it has the second largest standing army in the world and ranks fifth in military expenditure among nations. India is a federal republic governed under a parliamentary system and consists of 29 states and 7 union territories.
A pluralistic and multi-ethnic society, it is home to a diversity of wildlife in a variety of protected habitats. The name India is derived from Indus, which originates from the Old Persian word Hindush, equivalent to the Sanskrit word Sindhu, the historical local appellation for the Indus River; the ancient Greeks referred to the Indians as Indoi, which translates as "The people of the Indus". The geographical term Bharat, recognised by the Constitution of India as an official name for the country, is used by many Indian languages in its variations, it is a modernisation of the historical name Bharatavarsha, which traditionally referred to the Indian subcontinent and gained increasing currency from the mid-19th century as a native name for India. Hindustan is a Middle Persian name for India, it was introduced into India by the Mughals and used since then. Its meaning varied, referring to a region that encompassed northern India and Pakistan or India in its entirety; the name may refer to either the northern part of India or the entire country.
The earliest known human remains in South Asia date to about 30,000 years ago. Nearly contemporaneous human rock art sites have been found in many parts of the Indian subcontinent, including at the Bhimbetka rock shelters in Madhya Pradesh. After 6500 BCE, evidence for domestication of food crops and animals, construction of permanent structures, storage of agricultural surplus, appeared in Mehrgarh and other sites in what is now Balochistan; these developed into the Indus Valley Civilisation, the first urban culture in South Asia, which flourished during 2500–1900 BCE in what is now Pakistan and western India. Centred around cities such as Mohenjo-daro, Harappa and Kalibangan, relying on varied forms of subsistence, the civilization engaged robustly in crafts production and wide-ranging trade. During the period 2000–500 BCE, many regions of the subcontinent transitioned from the Chalcolithic cultures to the Iron Age ones; the Vedas, the oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism, were composed during this period, historians have analysed these to posit a Vedic culture in the Punjab region and the upper Gangetic Plain.
Most historians consider this period to have encompassed several waves of Indo-Aryan migration into the subcontinent from the north-west. The caste system, which created a hierarchy of priests and free peasants, but which excluded indigenous peoples by labeling their occupations impure, arose during this period. On the Deccan Plateau, archaeological evidence from this period suggests the existence of a chiefdom stage of political organisation. In South India, a progression to sedentary life is indicated by the large number of megalithic monuments dating from this period, as well as by nearby traces of agriculture, irrigation tanks, craft traditions. In the late Vedic period, around the 6th century BCE, the small states and chiefdoms of the Ganges Plain and the north-western regions had consolidated into 16 major oligarchies and monarchies that were known as the mahajanapadas; the emerging urbanisation gave rise to non-Vedic religious movements, two of which became independent religions. Jainism came into prominence during the life of Mahavira.
Buddhism, based on the teachings of Gautama Buddha, attracted followers from all social classes excepting the middle
Baron Redesdale, of Redesdale in the County of Northumberland, is a title, created twice, both times in the Peerage of the United Kingdom. It was firstly created in 1802 for politician Sir John Freeman-Mitford, he was Speaker of the House of Commons between 1801 and 1802 and Lord Chancellor of Ireland between 1802 and 1806. His only son, the second Baron, served as Chairman of Committees in the House of Lords from 1851 to 1886. In 1877, he was created Earl of Redesdale, in the County of Northumberland, in the Peerage of the United Kingdom. Lord Redesdale never married, on his death in 1886 both titles became extinct; the Earl bequeathed his substantial estates to his first cousin twice removed, the diplomat and writer Sir Algernon Freeman-Mitford, the great-grandson of historian William Mitford, the elder brother of the first Baron Redesdale. In 1902, the Redesdale title was revived when Algernon Freeman-Mitford was raised to the peerage as Baron Redesdale, of Redesdale in the County of Northumberland, on 15 July 1902.
He was succeeded by his second but eldest surviving son, David Freeman-Mitford, 2nd Baron Redesdale, chiefly remembered as the father of the famous Mitford sisters. He was a member of the Right Club, founded by Archibald Maule Ramsay, his only son, the Hon. Thomas Freeman-Mitford, was killed in action in Burma in 1945. Lord Redesdale was therefore succeeded by the third Baron, he was High Sheriff of Oxfordshire in 1935. He died childless, on his death in 1962 the title passed to his younger brother, the fourth Baron, he died childless, was succeeded by his nephew, the fifth Baron. He was the son of the Hon. Ernest Rupert Bertram Ogilvy Freeman-Mitford, fifth son of the first Baron; as of 2017, the title is held by the fifth Baron's son, the sixth Baron, who succeeded in 1991. He is a Liberal Democrat politician, who in 2000 was created the youngest life peer as Baron Mitford, of Redesdale in the County of Northumberland. John Freeman-Mitford, 1st Baron Redesdale John Thomas Freeman-Mitford, 2nd Baron Redesdale John Thomas Freeman-Mitford, 1st Earl of Redesdale Algernon Bertram Freeman-Mitford, 1st Baron Redesdale David Bertram Ogilvy Freeman-Mitford, 2nd Baron Redesdale Bertram Thomas Carlyle Ogilvy Freeman-Mitford, 3rd Baron Redesdale John Power Bertram Ogilvy Freeman-Mitford, 4th Baron Redesdale Clement Napier Bertram Freeman-Mitford, 5th Baron Redesdale Rupert Bertram Mitford, 6th Baron Redesdale The heir apparent is the present holder's only son, the Hon. Bertram David Mitford.
William Mitford Mitford sisters Kidd, Williamson, David. Debrett's Baronetage. New York: St Martin's Press, 1990, Leigh Rayment's Peerage Pages
George V was King of the United Kingdom and the British Dominions, Emperor of India, from 6 May 1910 until his death in 1936. Born during the reign of his grandmother Queen Victoria, George was third in the line of succession behind his father, Prince Albert Edward, his own elder brother, Prince Albert Victor. From 1877 to 1891, George served in the Royal Navy, until the unexpected death of his elder brother in early 1892 put him directly in line for the throne. On the death of his grandmother in 1901, George's father ascended the throne as Edward VII, George was created Prince of Wales, he became king-emperor on his father's death in 1910. George V's reign saw the rise of socialism, fascism, Irish republicanism, the Indian independence movement, all of which radically changed the political landscape; the Parliament Act 1911 established the supremacy of the elected British House of Commons over the unelected House of Lords. As a result of the First World War, the empires of his first cousins Nicholas II of Russia and Wilhelm II of Germany fell, while the British Empire expanded to its greatest effective extent.
In 1917, George became the first monarch of the House of Windsor, which he renamed from the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha as a result of anti-German public sentiment. In 1924 he appointed the first Labour ministry and in 1931 the Statute of Westminster recognised the dominions of the Empire as separate, independent states within the Commonwealth of Nations, he had smoking-related health problems throughout much of his reign and at his death was succeeded by his eldest son, Edward VIII. George was born on 3 June 1865, in London, he was the second son of Albert Edward, Prince of Wales, Alexandra, Princess of Wales. His father was the eldest son of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, his mother was the eldest daughter of King Christian IX and Queen Louise of Denmark, he was baptised at Windsor Castle on 7 July 1865 by the Archbishop of Charles Longley. As a younger son of the Prince of Wales, there was little expectation, he was third in line after his father and elder brother, Prince Albert Victor.
George was only 17 months younger than Albert Victor, the two princes were educated together. John Neale Dalton was appointed as their tutor in 1871. Neither Albert Victor nor George excelled intellectually; as their father thought that the navy was "the best possible training for any boy", in September 1877, when George was 12 years old, both brothers joined the cadet training ship HMS Britannia at Dartmouth, Devon. For three years from 1879, the royal brothers served on HMS Bacchante, accompanied by Dalton, they toured the colonies of the British Empire in the Caribbean, South Africa and Australia, visited Norfolk, Virginia, as well as South America, the Mediterranean and East Asia. In 1881 on a visit to Japan, George had a local artist tattoo a blue and red dragon on his arm, was received in an audience by the Emperor Meiji. Dalton wrote an account of their journey entitled The Cruise of HMS Bacchante. Between Melbourne and Sydney, Dalton recorded a sighting of the Flying Dutchman, a mythical ghost ship.
When they returned to Britain, Queen Victoria complained that her grandsons could not speak French or German, so they spent six months in Lausanne in an unsuccessful attempt to learn another language. After Lausanne, the brothers were separated, he travelled the world. During his naval career he commanded Torpedo Boat 79 in home waters HMS Thrush on the North America station, before his last active service in command of HMS Melampus in 1891–92. From on, his naval rank was honorary; as a young man destined to serve in the navy, Prince George served for many years under the command of his uncle, Prince Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh, stationed in Malta. There, he fell in love with his cousin, Princess Marie, his grandmother and uncle all approved the match, but the mothers—the Princess of Wales and the Duchess of Edinburgh—opposed it. The Princess of Wales thought the family was too pro-German, the Duchess of Edinburgh disliked England. Marie's mother was the only daughter of Tsar Alexander II of Russia.
She resented the fact that, as the wife of a younger son of the British sovereign, she had to yield precedence to George's mother, the Princess of Wales, whose father had been a minor German prince before being called unexpectedly to the throne of Denmark. Guided by her mother, Marie refused George, she married Ferdinand, the future King of Romania, in 1893. In November 1891, George's elder brother, Albert Victor, became engaged to his second cousin once removed, Princess Victoria Mary of Teck, known as "May" within the family. May's father, Prince Francis, Duke of Teck, belonged to a morganatic, cadet branch of the house of Württemberg, her mother, Princess Mary Adelaide of Cambridge, was a male-line granddaughter of King George III and a first cousin of Queen Victoria. On 14 January 1892, six weeks after the formal engagement, Albert Victor died of pneumonia, leaving George second in line to the throne, to succeed after his father. George had only just recovered from a serious illness himself, after being confined to bed for six weeks with typhoid fever, the disease, thought to have killed his grandfather Prince Albert.
Queen Victoria still regarded Princess May as a suitable match for her grandson, George and May grew close during their shared perio
Makrana marble is a type of white marble of high quality, popular for use in sculpture and building decor. It is mined in the town of Makrana in Rajasthan and was used in the construction of several iconic monuments such as the Taj Mahal in Agra and the Victoria Memorial in Kolkata. In the Makrana area, marble is found as five steeply-dipping bands, they form part of the Ajmer Formation of the Delhi Supergroup, a sequence of sedimentary rocks, deposited in the Delhi Basin during the Proterozoic. About 1450 Ma these rocks were affected by the Delhi Orogeny, causing the metamorphism that transformed the original limestones to marble and the folding that caused the steep dip and the current outcrop pattern. Makrana is regarded as the oldest place in India with a marble quarry. Upon mining, Makrana marble is not subjected to any form of treatment, but used in cutting and chiseling straight away. Makrana marble is one of the two calcitic marble varieties in India, with all others being dolomitic, it has two varieties: albeta.
The quantity of marble reserves in the region is estimated to be 55 million tonnes by the state government. About 120 thousand tonnes of the marble are produced annually from over 400 mines in the region. Makrana marble is therefore resistant to water seepage; the water absorption of Makrana marble is said to be the lowest among all types in India, the marble is claimed to contain 98 percent of calcium carbonate and only two percent of impurities. The different shades of Makrana marble are pure white, white with grey shades and white with pink shades, depending on the level of impurities; the close interlocking property of the marble makes it strong and translucent. It is said to retain its shine and white color for a long period of time. Makrana Marbles splits into various categories according to its pattern; the following are the exclusive marbles which are manufactured at Makrana. Makrana White Marble- Makrana marble is used in residential & commercial buildings and numerous temples, mosques and monuments, it can be used for decorative purpose in houses, corporate offices and Restaurants and Indian sculptures, handicrafts.
Brown Albeta Marble- This marble stone is a calcite stone. It is a milky white marble and available in grey and panther brown pattern; the stone is available in various forms such as large & small slabs, regular tiles. Dungri Marble- Dungri Marble is one of the oldest and finest quality marble of makrana based mines; this stone is used in flooring, wall cladding due to its special qualities like no chemical reinforcement, no color changes, no pin holes. Albeta Marble- Albeta Marble is one of the best as well as recommended stone for floor designs which gives luxury look to the home; the color of albeta makrana marble is milky white with a brown texture. Prominent buildings/monuments that used Makrana marble in their construction are: Taj Mahal, India Victoria Memorial, India – Makrana marble was chosen over various other European types in the construction of the Victoria Memorial, after several tests concluded Makrana marble to be superior. Sir Thomas Henry Holland, a British geologist, was given credit for recommending the use of Makrana marble in the construction of Victoria Memorial.
Sheikh Zayed Mosque, Abu Dhabi, UAE Moti Masjid, Pakistan Dukhnivaran Sahib Gurdwara, India Marble from Makrana is exported overseas to the Persian Gulf countries, the European Union, Southeast Asia, Canada and Russia. In India, it is used for handicraft and sculpture work, apart from construction of buildings. Makrana marble was given the geographical indication status in 2015 by the Geographical Indication Registry, Chennai
The Maidan referred to as the Brigade Parade Ground, is the largest urban park in Kolkata in the Indian state of West Bengal. It is a vast stretch of field that includes numerous play grounds, including the famous cricketing venue Eden Gardens, several football stadiums, the Kolkata Race Course; the Maidan is dotted with statues and architectural works, the most notable being the Victoria Memorial. Due to the freshness and greenery it provides to the metropolis, it has been referred to as the "lungs of Kolkata"; the property of the Indian Army, the Maidan hosts the army's Eastern zone high command in Fort William. The Maidan stretches from the Raj Bhavan building on the Esplanade in the north to the National Library on Belvedere Road in Alipore in the south; the wide field stretches from the Hoogly River in the west to the Victoria Memorial in the east. It is a historical and cultural center of Kolkata as well as a center of leisure and entertainment for Calcuttans. In 1758, one year after their decisive win in Battle of Plassey, the British East India Company commenced construction of the new Fort William in the center of the village Gobindapur.
The inhabitants of the village were compensated and provided with land in Taltala and Shovabazar. The fort was completed in 1773; the tiger-haunted jungle which cut off the village of Chowringhee from the river was cleared, gave way to the wide grassy stretch of the Maidan of which Calcutta is so proud. The formation of this airy expanse and the filling up of the creek which had cut off the settlement in the south, led the European inhabitants to forsake the narrow limits of the old palisades; the movement towards Chowringhee had been noticeable as early as 1746. In 1883–1884 the Maidan, along with grounds of the Indian Museum, hosted the Calcutta International Exhibition. In 1909, H. E. A. Cotton wrote,The great Maidan presents a most refreshing appearance to the eye, the heavy night dew in the hot season, keeping the grass green. Many of the fine trees with which it was once studded were blown down in the cyclone of 1864, but they have not been allowed to remain without successors, the handsome avenues across the Maidan still constitute the chief glory of Calcutta.
Dotting the wide expanse are a number of fine tanks, from which the inhabitants were content in former days to obtain their water-supply. The Maidan was developed as a 5-square-kilometre parade ground for the forces. While the Europeans moved to the area around the Maidan, the Indians moved away; the richer families such as the Debs moved to Sobhabazar, the Tagores to Pathuriaghata and Jorasanko, the Ghosals to Bhukailash. The Maidan has been with the army. Thieves, both Indian and European, were there as early as the 1860s; the fort and the Maidan were excluded from the city as per Act 16 of 1847. In Bengali, the maidan is called'Gawr-er maath'.'Gawr', in Bengali, means fort and it's meaning translates to the'fort's ground'. While the core of the Maidan has remained untouched except for roads and tram tracks across it, the surrounding areas have undergone significant construction activity. In 1882, the Calcutta Tramways Corporation introduced steam-powered trams across the Maidan from Chowringhee to Kalighat and Khidirpur.
In 1889 came the electric trams. The oldest road on the Maidan is the Course, extending from the'Cocked hat' in the north to the Khidirpur bridge. The'broad gravelled walk' on the west side of that portion is the Red Road, constructed in 1820. To the south of the fort is the Ellenborough Course, meant for horse exercises, towards the east is the Race Course, started in 1819; that was the scenario a century back. Government House was built in 1803, the 48-metre high Octerlony Monument in 1848, the museum was started in the Asiatic Society in 1814 but shifted to the present site as the Indian Museum in 1887, St. Paul's Cathedral was built between 1839 and 1847, it was consecrated in 1874, the Victoria Memorial was erected in 1921. On Council House Street, at one corner of the Maidan, was the long-defunct Fort William College, which played a pioneering role in the development of many of the Indian languages Bengali; the cricket stadium at Eden Gardens was built in stages. Amongst the additions are Netaji Indoor Stadium, the M. P. Birla Planetarium,Rabindra Sadan, the Academy of Fine Arts, Nandan.
Chowringhee, part of the north-south lifeline of Kolkata, was laid down at the same time as the Maidan along what was the old road made by the Sabarna Roy Choudhurys, the old zemindars of Calcutta, from Barisha, where the junior branch resided, to Halisahar, the seat of the senior branch. The Tollygunj–Esplanade section of the Metro Railway took a little over seven years to build, all the while disturbing activity on the eastern end of the Maidan; the stations bordering the Maidan as one travels from the south are Maidan, Park Street, Esplanade. The Howrah Bridge is away from the Maidan, but the second Hooghly bridge, Vidyasagar Setu, overlooks at least one corner of the Maidan and Fort William; the Maidan was dotted with statues of British governor generals and other eminent personalities of the British Raj, includingLord Curzon, Roberts, Northbrook and others who had known Kolkata well. Two or three of them were erected in the first few years of Indian independence in 1947. Over time, many of the vacant plinths or plots were filled with statues of Indians, including Mahatma Gandhi, Ram Mohan Roy, Chittaranjan Das, Jawaharlal Nehru, Subhas Chandra Bose, Sri Aurobindo, Matangini Hazra, Pritilata