Thursday, 26 April 2018

Thanjavur Maratha Kings-A Book



                      
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With the blessings of my ancestors…says the author in the introduction to his book “Contributions of the Thanjavur Maratha Kings”. What an ancestry! The author, Prince Pratap Sinh Serfoji Raje Bhosle is a scion of the erstwhile royal Bhosle family of Thanjavur. He is the 14th descendant of King Venkoji (Ekoji I) founder of the Maratha rule at Thanjavur in 1676 CE and 6th descendant of Maharaja Serfoji II the great scholar.

Ekoji was a half-brother of Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj and was the first of several great kings who were scholars, authors and supporters of music, dance and drama. Born in 1993, the prince completed his B.Tech (Electronics and Communications Engineering). He quotes Marcus Garvey -A people without the knowledge of their past, history and origin and culture is like a tree without roots. This seems to be his inspiration to delve deep into his family ancestry, preserve antiques, coins, and photographs from their treasury of memories and possessions. He has supported his interest in research activity by completing a course Conservation of Museum, studied Modi and Marathi script at the Saraswati Mahal Library. In his eagerness to share all the information with the fans and friends around the world, he has created a blog, and a Facebook page and Instagram to share images and information about Thanjavur, the history and heritage monuments around the region.


Now Prince Pratap Sinh Serfoji Raje Bhosle is the author of a monumental book of the history of Maratha Kings of Thanjavur. The first edition sold out within a few months and this book, released in December 2017 is the second edition. The information given in this book comes straight from the royal stable which itself is a guarantee of authenticity. We now have access to many details and rare photographs which are made public for the first time.
There is history of Thanjavur and the fourteen great Maratha Rajas, including Shahji I, Chatrapati Shivaji, and Sambhaji who were prominent and others who ruled from 1676 to 1903. A detailed history of the Cholas and Nayaks gives a holistic perspective. A summary of Thanjavur Maratha History beginning 1676 CE from the Inscriptions of Bhosle Vamsa Charitram is an important addition to this book.


There is history of Thanjavur and the twelveMaratha Rajas that ruled till 1903. A detailed history of the Cholas and Nayaks gives a holistic perspective. A summary of Thanjavur Maratha History from the Inscriptions of Bhosle Vamsa Charitram is an important addition to this book

Like his ancestors, Pratap Sinh’s interest in Bharata Natyam, is revealed in his chapters on Devadasi tradition, Natya Sastra and the Karanas. In his direct simple style, the author has made this interesting book easy for readers of all ages but is as invaluable to the historian as the epigraphic inscriptions of ancient kings.

The book would have benefitted with a glossary and an index besides a more vigilant eye on the typos that have crept in.

Shri Pratap Sinh’s book was released at the same time as my book, Bhagavata Mela-My Tryst with Tradition. We got in touch with each other on social media and were excited that the two books on Thanjavur were being released almost together. I have always expressed the fact that our arts and Bhagavata Mela in particular was eternally indebted to these royal families and was thrilled to be in the presence of one such descendant.


I met Shri Pratap Sinh in Chennai at the holy precincts of Sri Kapaliswarar temple in Mylapore. We exchanged books and have been in touch since. He comes across as an enthusiastic, academically inclined, and ambitious historian. I wish this young author success in every project he undertakes, because each book he authors will be an asset to our cultural history.
Follow the author on:
@Pratap_rpb- Instagram, Twitter
Serfojimemorialhall.com Website



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