18th Century Independent States

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Detaied Map of Shikhs Empier

Shikhs Empier

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Guru Nanak: (1469-1538)

  • Born in 1469 in Talwandi in Nankana Khattri family.

  • Guru Nanak mastered Persian.

  • Founder of Sikhism. He believed in the Nirguna form of divine.

  • The hymns of Guru Nanak are preserved in the Adi Granth .

  • Nanak is also said to have visited Ceylon and converted the Raja of mat place to his faith.

  • He composed a book called Pran Sangli in Ceylon.

  • He founded the town of Kiratpur (in Jalandhar dist.).

  • He died in Kartarpur Punjab in 1538.

GuruAngad: (1538-1552)

  • He was born in 1504, in the village of Khadur, on the banks of river Beas, near Govindwal, in Tirhun subdi-vision of the Chhatijs.

  • He gained his livelihood by doing hard work from his hands, twisting yarn, or coarse twine made of munj.

  • Also known as Lehna.

  • Founder of Gurumukhi script.

  • Started compiling Guru Nanak's hymns.

Guru Amardas: (1552-1574)

  • Disapproved Sari.

  • Built at Gowindwal- a Baoli or large oblong tank

  • Sent 22 of his chosen disciples to visit different parts of the country and spread the religion of Nanak

  • Encouraged preaching and discussions with the people.

  • Divided the empire into 24 Manjis or Parishads.

  • Popularized Langar started by Guru Nanak.

  • Died in Gowindwal on 14th May 1574.

Guru Ramdas: (1574-1581)

  • A tank was dug at the site given to his wife by the Mughal emperor Akbar

  • He laid the foundation of Amritsar, in the midst of which he built a temple called Harmandar.

  • He died in March, 1581.

GuruArjun: (1581-1606)

  • He was the youngest child of Ramdas and ascended to Guruship in 1581.

  • First of the Gurus to lay aside the rosary and the garb of faqir. He dressed in costly attire and converted the Saintly gaddi of his predecessors into a Princely rostrum.

  • In 1604, he compiled Granth Sahib (Nanak, Kabir, Namdev, Ganjshankar).

  • He was the author of Sukhmaru.

  • He completed the construction of a grand tank near Amritsar and built another in the same place called Kaulsar. He also built the celebrated tank of Taran Taran in Amritsar district.

  • He was arrested on 30th May, 1606, on the charges of treason and was executed by Jahan Pir for helping his rebellious son Khusrau.

  • This turned the history of Sikhs and the history of self defense in Sikh religion started with this.

Guru Hargovind: (1606-1644)

  • Defeated Mughal army in Sangram in 1628.

  • After the death of Jahangir, entered the service of Shah- Jahan and be- friended his eldest son Darashikoh, the then Governor of Punjab. Later when on encountering imperial army, Dara Shikoh used his influence to please his father Shah Tahan to call back the army.

  • In 1634, shifted his capital to Kiratpur in Kashmir hills.

  • Built Akaltakht, the throne of Almighty in 1609, in front of Harimandir.

  • Started congregational prayer (Sangat) and Anjuman-i-Shikhan.

  • Started hanging two swords-: Piri and Miri.

  • Lohgarh fort of Amritsar was built during his time.

  • Died on 3rd March, 1644. His tomb was erected at Kartarpur.

Guru Har Kishan: (1661-1664)

  • Succession was preceded by a violent clash, which was later resolved by the Mughal emperor who then recognized him as the Guru.

  • Died on 14th March, 1664, because of smallpox.

Guru Teg Bahadur: (1664-1675)

  • Youngest son of Hargovind.

  • Settled at Anandpur.

  • Incited brahmins of Kashmir against Aurangzeb.

  • On 11th November,1675, he was beheaded.

Guru Gobind Singh: (1675-1708)

  • Son of Teg Bahadur.

  • Started the concept of Panch Pyare.

  • Founded Khalsa in 1669.

  • Sayings compiled in Vichitra Natak.

  • On 30th March, 1669, he founded Vikram Samvat (1 st Vaishak) in 1756.

  • Propounded famous 5 K's: kangha, kada, kesh, kripan, kac-hchha

  • Guru at Damdam Saheb completed the Adigranth, 1600 hymns were added to the Granth, the added portion being known as the Dasam-granth. They are written in Gurumukhi script.

  • Wrote Hikayat and Zafarnama in Persian

  • In August, 1708, 2 Pathans stabbed him.

  • The verdict on Guru is called Gurumata.

Banda Bahadur (1708-1715)

  • His original name was Lakshmandar, born on 27th October, 1670, near Rajauri.

  • In earlier life, he took sanyas, became an ascetic, and assumed the name of Madhav Das.

  • After the killing of 10th Guru, he became active.

  • Settled in Makhlispur (near sadhaura) and made it his HQ called Lohgarh.

  • Issued a Hukum-Nama to unite the Sikhs.

  • In 1715, attacked Mughals.

  • Captured by Abdus Samad Khan on 17th December, 1715.

  • Executed on 9th June,1716.

  • Introduced a new slogan “Fateh Darshan”

  • Probably the first Sikh, to think of a "political raj".

Kapur Singh

  • Founder of Dal Khalsa.

  • Removed hereditary Zamindars

Ranjit Singh (1780-1839)

  • Born on 13th November 1780.

  • About this time Punjab was frequently invaded by the Durrani King Shah Zaman, grandson of Ahmad Shah Abdali.

  • Appeared as a threat to the British and the British were compelled to establish good relations with Ranjit Singh.

  • By 1797, Ranjit Singh became the de facto ruler and his power gradually increased.

Detailed Map of Ranjit Singh Empier

Ranjit Singh Empier

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  • In 1798, appointed as the Governor of Qabul by Zaman Shah.

  • By 1799, captured Lahore.

  • In 1801, formally assumed the title of Maharaja and held a public Darbar.

  • Re-established the old Mohalladari system under which each Mohalla was placed under the charge of one of its members, who possessed more influence than the rest.

  • In 1803, captured Amritsar.

  • In 1805, British governent during the second Anglo-Maratha war tried to establish friendly relations with Ranjitj Sjngh.

  • In 1806, signed friendship treaty with British. Accordingly:

    • Sikhs to not enter into an alliance with any anti-British power;

    • British got the opportunity to expand southwards;

    • For Britishers, Sutlej was a better defense than Jamuna (therefore in order to expand in the CIS- Sutlej area, Ranjit Singh would have to conquer all misils crossing Zaman Shah's border);

    • According to the treaty with Scindias (1785), misls were accepted to be under the sphere of influence of Scindia. Marathas signed the treaty of Bassein, the areas passed to the British. When British approached Ranjit Singh, he thought that these territories would be given to him. Therefore, he agreed to sign the treaty.

  • In 1809, the British entered into a “Treaty of Amritsar” with Ranjit Singh, Clauses:

    • Ranjit Singh's leadership of 45 parganas was recognized by the British.

    • Sutlej was recognized as his boundary.

  • On 26th June,1838, a tripartite agreement between EIC, Shah Shuja and Ranjit Singh was signed, to let the British troops pass through Lahore.

  • Ranjit Singh died on 27th June 1839.


  • He adopted the Batai system and later the Kankut system.

  • Kardar was the most important revenue official

  • Fauj-i-Khas was established as a model troop.

  • His army was trained by French experts, like Allard and Ventura.

  • Victor Jacque Mont was the French traveler visiting his court.

I. Anglo-Sikh War (1845-46)

  • On 28th Jan,1846 Sikhs were-defeated near Aliwal.

  • The treaty of Lahore was signed on 9th March 1846.

II. Anglo-Sikh War (1848-49)

  • Lord Dalhausie annexed P-Unjab.