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H.H. Shahu Chhatrapati Maharaj [seated with palace servants]
24 x 29.7 cm
Courtesy of the British Library, Image number: 3, Shelfmark: Photo 2/8(3)
Seated portrait of Shahaji Chhatrapati, Maharaja of Kolhapur with attendants, taken by an unknown photographer, 1894. Kolhapur, situated on the banks of the river Panchaganga was the capital city of the former princely state of the same name in Maharashtra. In 1675 it was conquered by the Maratha chief Shivaji and the Maharajas of Kolahpur were descended from his younger son. The British obtained political suzerainty of Kolhapur in 1844. Maharaja Shahaji Chhatrapati (1875-1922) who was descended from Shivaji, succeeded to the throne as a minor on 17 March 1884; the country was ruled by regents until 1894 when the Maharaja came of age. This view was taken in 1894 by on the occasion of the installation of His Highness Shahu Chhatrapati, the Maharaja of Kolhapur. Under the Shahji, Kolhapur had a reformist government and became a great commercial, religious and educational centre. A number of fine buildings were also erected during his reign.