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all, however, acknowledged a para- bable that he might have confimount fovereignty in the Ram. dered as the proper life of a moRajah (who is supposed to have march, that state of ease and infig. been the immediate descendant of nificance, which so many princes Sevagi); but the degrees of sub- seem disposed voluntarily to adopt. miffion seem to have been mea. The seat of government was sured by time and circumstance. transferred from the ancient royThe connection and dependence al residence of Sitterah, to Poo. resembled the feudal establish- nah; and Nana Row, as well as ments in Europe. Some of the his successors, seem still to have ftates grew too powerful to adınit acted under the supposed authority of any farther service than what of the deposed prince, by their suited their immediate interests; assuming no other title or characand others were apt to follow 'ter than that of Paishwa, or prime the example, who were less able minister. From this change, the to abide the possible consequences empire of the Ram-Rajah has been of it.
distinguished only by the appellaA revolution in the court of the tion of the Paishwarhip, or otherRam-Rajah tended much to weak- wife the government of Poonah, en this connection, and to lessen from the name of its present the reverence as well as the de. capital. pendence of the other states. The 'This extraordinary government weakness of a minority enabled of ministers became hereditary, Nana Row, the prime minister (a and was for a time fo ably conman of abilities, and a Bramin) ducted, that the empire seemed to to seize the reins of government; lose nothing of its former power and the influence of that power. and Splendour. But ambition ful body of which he was a mem- having at length made its way ber, ferved effectually to secure into the family of the ministers, and establish his authority. Such and in despite of the strict religia revolutions have at all times been ous principles of their order, there to frequent in the eastern world, producing its usual baleful effects, as to prevent their exciting any internal diffentions have since been extraordinary degree of surprize. the means of impeding the active exThis revolution, contrary to the ertions, and of reducing the power established practice of most ages of the state. Of all these evils, and nations, was unstained by the opportunity which they affordblood; but we are not to forget ed to the extraordinary aggranthat it was conducted by Bramins. dicement of Hyder Ally, who The usurper was fatisfied with the from a soldier of fortune became power, without affuming the titles the scourge or the terror of all that or inlignia of sovereignty. The side of India, may he considered as intant Ram-Rajah was kept in a far the greatest. sort of splendid confinement, sur. Nana Row was succeeded by rounded with the appendages of his eldest son Madai, who, dying eastern grandeur, but debarred of without issue, towards the end of all power, and kept totally igno- the year 1772, the government, rant of business. It is not impro- as it was now settled, of course de
volved volved to his younger brother, made, and the continued intrigues Narrain Row. Their uncle, Ra- and plots carried on for forcing gonaut Row, otherwise known in him into the government of a this country by the name of Ra great people, in direct contradicgaboy, had for some years lain tion to their own will and liking, in close confinement, for re- laid the foundation for all those peated plats to seize upon the go- wars and troubles which have since vernment. Madai Row being a- taken place between the English ware of the youth and inexperi- and the Marattas. ence of his brother, and dreading No withstanding the losses suí. the infidious craft and intrigues of tained from without, through their Ragonaut, though in confinement, intestine diftentions and domestic thought that gratitude might ope- troubles, the Poonah Marattas are rate more powerfully in restrain- ftill a great and powerful people; ing the effect of that factious and their dominions, including those turbulent spirit than the walls of of the tributary and feudatory a prison. He accordingly re- princes immediately depending on lealed Ragonaut, places him in them, are of a wide extent; and an honourable situation in the ge- they can bring numerous and pow. vernment, and joining the hands erful armies into the field. But of the uncle and nephew, as he lay there being composed almost endving, adjured the former by every tirely of cavalry, are neceffarily human and sacred tie and autho- subject to the defects to which rity, to aid the youth and inexpe- that powerful arm of military force rience of the latter by his advice, is liable when employed (ingly; assistance, and protection.
and being constituted on the fame Ragonaut, in discharge of the principles with the ancient feudal trust repofed in him, procured, armies of Europe, they are likewithin less than a year, the allar. wife subject to all the disadvanfination of his nephew; hoping to tages of that system. They rush secure the Paishwaship in his own eagerly into the field, at the call of family, by the extinction of that their respective chiefs, and sweep brother's line, whose abilities had everything before them like a rendered him its founder. The tempest in their progress; but it consequences were in fome de. is the universal practice of the Magree such as he merited. The rattas, as soon as the expedition aging powers of the state in his is ended, to return home with the hands, along with his personal spoil; some bodies only excepted, influence, and the weight of a which are peculiarly destined to faction which he headed, were all attend the persons of their princes. incapable of resisting that general They may, however, be sumindignation which so execrable a moned again in a few days, and deed excited among the Marattas, will assemble with the same alaHe with difficulty escaped the crity as before. It may be easily public vengeance, by abandoning seen what great advantages this his country, and flying for refuge constitution of their armies, togeto Bombay. The protection af- ther with the want of infantry, forded to him, with the attempts must afford to the unceasing efforts of regular forces; while, on the shewn, that the numerous other other hand, the latter can scarcely Maratta Itates are guided by cirhope to protect open countries cumstance and occasion, in their from their ravages. The wars of attachment to or dependence on the ancient Parthians throw no the court of Poonah. Upon the (mall light on the opposite advan- whole, it does not appear that any tages and disadvantages in both general principle of union, except. cales. The present use of artillery, ing that of self-defence, sublifts however, inclines the scale, heavily at present among the Maratta states; on the side of a mixed and regular and it would therefore seem, that force.
nothing less than some common The Rajah of Berar stands next danger reaching to the whole, to the Poonah Marrattas, with res- could direct their united powers to pect to power and extent of domi- any one point of action. Happy nions; and is in fait too great and it is to the European and Mahomeindependent to owe any farther dan interests in India, that the force acknowledgement to that court of this vast and warlike empire is than what his immediate interests fo divided. dictate, and the remains of ancient It will here be necessary to take attachment might possibly excite. fome notice of the Lituation in He has besides claims to the suc- which the Company stood for some ceffion of that sovereignty, which years back, with respect to their tend strongly to disanion, he being other powerful and formidable lineally descended from the family neighbour Hyder Ally. When of the Ram Rajah; and the de- that bold and enterprizing prince posed elder line, as is apprehended, brought the war, which had been now extinct.
commenced against him, to a for Sindia and Holkar, who are sup- tunate issue in the year 1769; and posed to be descended from Hin- when, in the height of success, he doo kings of the highest antiquity, personally dictated equitable terms also possess very considerable and of peace to the Company at the valuable territories. These princes gates of Madras, a treaty of friendhave entered deeply into the late ihip and alliance was then, in the and present politics of the court of firmest manner, concluded between Poonah, and find it more flattering the late contending parties. By to their ambition, and more con- this treaty, it was stipulated, that ducive to their security and in the contracting parties should inu. terests, to participate in the gene- tually afflift each other against any ral greatness of the empire, and to enemy that should attack either : preside at the head of that aristo- a clause evidently pointed against cracy, which, since the assassination the Marattas, and undoubtedly so of Narrain Row, guides all its understood, and verbally explained councils, than by taking any ad- on both sides, although any parti. vantage of its temporary weakness, cular fpecification of them in the to aim at a precarious indepen- written instrument was prudently dency, under the restrictions of a omitted. circumscribed power in their own Hyder, with that sagacity and dorninions. We have already forelight which distinguishes his
character, determined to make an fioned them to acquaint the go.. carly discovery of the degree of vernor and council, that as he reliance and value which was to should, on his part, punctually be placed on the faith and the maintain the strict friendship befriendship of his new ally. He tween them, he expected they accordingly, on the commencement would, in conformity thereto, supof a war with the Maratlas, which ply him with a body of troops; immediately after broke out, wrote and that he was even willing to a letter to the governor of Ma- pay a specified sum of money to dras, requiring that, consistently defray the expence of their serwith the friendship and regard sub- vice,' in order to obviate any listing between them, and for the failure of the performance on good appearance thereof in the eyes their side. These gentlemen, from of the world, he would, for form's themselves remarked, that if this fake, send an officer with a bat- requisition was not complied with, talion of seapoys to his assistance. they much feared that Hyder's A compliance with this requisition former indisposition to the Comwas evaded, under the apprehen- pany would again return. . * fion of a war with the Marattas, as. These applications produced no another proposition made by Hyder 'more effect at Madras than the at the same time was, upon the former. The Marattas, under the ground of impropriety in adopting conduct of Madai Row, so totally a measure of consequence with- overpowered Hyder in this war, out consulting the other presiden- that his ruin was deemed inevita
b le. Unable to face them in the Before the war had continued field, they were masters of all the quite a year, the Marattas having open country; and his strongest forbroken upon different fides into tresses were barely capable of afHyder's dominions, and taken se- fording refuge and protection to veral of his forts, he wrote ano. his troops. Thus Mut up, and all ther letter to Madras in the be- cultivation at an end in his domiginning of March 1770, in which nions, it seemed evident, that nowhe stated, that in confideration of ever excellently his magazines were the union between them, his army provided, famine must soon accomand artillery were their own; that plith what the want of infantry notwithstanding he had a right to and a good artillery bad hitherto consider theirs in the same light, prevented the Maraitas from effectyet, if they would only send a small ing. force to join and act in concert In this state of necessity and danwish him, in order to maintain ger, Hyder, of course, made repeatthe appearance of connexion, he ed applications to his new allies for would require no more. But, at the performance of their engagethe same time, the British agents ments; stating the advantages to in Hyder's camp informed the pre- be derived from their alliance with fidency, that he was very earnest him, and strongly urging the danin his defire of a more effective aid ger, if not ruin, to themselves and than what he mentioned in his to the whole peninsula, which the letter, and that he had commis. success of the Marattas, in the ac
complifoment of their an.bitious fhip or cordiality to Madras. He.
permitted, if not encouraged, to