Indian History
General Knowledge

Maratha Confederacy

( 1720 - 1818 )

Maratha Confederacy ( 1720 - 1818 )

Baji Rao I ( 1720 - 40 )

» Baji Rao, the eldest son of Balaji Viswanath, succeeded him as Peshwa at the young age of 20.
» He was considered the greatest exponent of guerrilla tactics after Shivaji and Maratha power reached its zenith under him.
» Under him several Maratha families became prominent and got themselves entrenched in different parts of India.
» After defeating and expelling the Siddis of Janjira from the mainland (1722), he conquered Bassein and Salsette from the Portuguese (1739).
» He also defeated the Nizam-ul-Mulk near Bhopal and concluded the treaty of oraha Sarai by which he got Malwa and Bundelkhand from the latter (1738).
» He led innumerable successful expeditions into North India to weaken the Mughal empire and to make the Marathas the supreme power in India.
» He said about Mughals : 'Let us strike at the trunk of the withering tree and the brandies will fall of themselves'.

Balaji Baji Rao ( 1740 - 61 )

» Popularly known as Nana Saheb, he succeeded his father at the age of 20.
» After the death of Shahu (1749), the management of all state affairs was left in his hands.
» In an agreement with the Mughal emperor Ahmad Shah, the Peshwa was to protect the Mughal empire from internal and external enemies (like Ahmad Shah Abdali) in return for Chauth (1752).
» Third battle of Panipnt (Jan 14,1761) resulted in the defeat of the Marathas by Ahmad Shah Abdali and the death of Viswas Rao and Sadashiv Rao Bhau, This event shocked the Peshwa Balaji Baji Rao and after six month he also died. This battle ended the Maratha power.
» Successors of Balaji Baji Rao : Madhav Rao (1761-72), Narayan Rao (1772-73), Sawai Madhav Rao (1773-95) and Baji Rao II (1795-1818).

Anglo-Maratha Wars

First Anglo-Maratha War (1775-82)

» Favouring the cause of Raghunath Rao (Raghoba) for Peshwaship, English (Hastings) came in conflict with the Marathas. On being defeated, the British had to sign the humiliating Convention of Wadgaon (1779).
» British later signed Treaty of Salbai (1782), renouncing the cause of Raghoba.

Second Anglo-Maratha war (1803-06)

» The Maratha Peshwa signed the Subsidiary Alliance Treaty of Bassein (1802).
» The Maratha confederacy, which did not like the idea challenged the British power but were defeated by the British.

Third Anglo-Maratha war (1817-18)

» Lord Hastings was determined to proclaim British paramountcy in lndia. He moved against Pindaris transgressed the sovereignty of the Maratha chiefs and the war began.
» The Marathas were decisively defeated.