Punjab Research Group

Revealed: the woman who terrified the British Empire

Posted in Articles, Book reviews by Pippa on June 9, 2009

A new biography explains how Jind Kaur, last queen of the Punjab, died in Victorian London By Jerome Taylor

The Independent, Monday, 25 May 2009

 On 1 August 1863, shortly after 6:15 in the evening, a frail and partially-blind queen who had spent much of her life raging against the British Empire, died in her bed on the top floor of a Kensington townhouse.

It was a peculiar and remarkably quiet end for a woman once the scourge of the British Raj in India. Only 15 years earlier, Jind Kaur, the Maharani of the Punjab, had encouraged the Sikh Empire to wage two disastrous wars against the British which led to the annexation of the Punjab and Jind being torn from her son when he was just nine-years-old.

Adopted by a dour colonial surgeon, that son, Duleep Singh, swiftly shed his Punjabi customs, converted to Christianity and moved to England to live the life of a respectable country squire, shooting grouse on his estate and hosting decadent parties for Britain’s Victorian elite. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/news/revealed-the-woman-who-terrified-the-british-empire-1690412.html

Get the book: Sovereign, Squire and Rebel: Maharajah Duleep Singh and the Heirs of a Lost Kingdom by Peter Bance (2009) http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sovereign-Squire-Rebel-Maharajah-Kingdom/dp/0956127002/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1244583908&sr=8-1

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