Volume 34 Number 2, March 1982

Shivaji and Facets of Maratha Culture

Edited by: Saryu Doshi
Binding: Hardcover
Specifications: 212 pages, 155 illustrations
Dimensions: 324 x 241 mm

The vision of Shivaji and those who succeeded him brought forth in Maharashtra a cultural and artistic ferment which expressed itself in varied facets. Temples and manor houses were built, their walls embellished with frescos of dancing gopis and divinities. Literature, music, and dance were patronized extensively. This volume devotes itself to highlighting the various aspects of Maratha culture. Erudite texts outline the achievements of Shivaji and the Maratha generals describing their innovative military tactics and naval manoeuvres. There are articles on Maratha forts and siege tactics, paintings, art and architecture, costumes, mansions, arms and armour.

Saryu Doshi, scholar and art historian, is a specialist in the history of Indian miniature painting. She is the Editor of Marg Publications.

Most Noble Prince: Introduction
Saryu Doshi

Shivaji - A Total Personality
Setu Madhavrao Pagadi

Chhatrapatis and Peshwas - A Historical Survey
A.R. Kulkarni

Maratha Coins and Mints
G.T. Kulkarni

Marathi Bhakti Poetry
S.G. Tulpule

Verses of Ramdas
Y.M. Pathan

Varkaris of Pandharpur
Y.M. Pathan

Samarth Ramdas
D.R. Amladi

Maratha Forts and Siege Tactics
P.N. Deshpande

Maratha Navy
B.K. Apte

Arms and Armour
G.N. Pant

The Bhavani Sword of Shivaji
P.M. Joshi

Temple Architecture
M.S. Mate

Maratha Manors
G.H. Khare

Maratha Wadas  A Way of Life
Gopal Krishna Kanhere

Mansions and Monasteries of Paithan
R.S. Morwanchikar

Religious and Funerary Monuments of Nagpur
A.P. Jamkhedkar

The Tradition of Painting – Its Origin and Continuity
M.S. Mate

Miniature Painting
M.S. Mate

Mural Tradition
Kamal Chavan

Glass Paintings of Maharashtra
Jaya Appasamy

Ganjifa – The Indian Card Game
G.H. Khare

Attire and Ornaments

Saryu Doshi

The Heritage of Tanjore
R. Nagaswamy



Most Noble Prince: An Introduction
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. viii-x

A selection of quotes describing Shivaji's princely qualities.

Shivaji - A Total Personality
Pagadi, Setu Madhavrao
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 3-7

An account of Shivaji's (1630-80) early life, military exploits, administration, and personality.

Chhatrapatis and Peshwas - A Historical Survey
Kulkarni, A.R.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 8-18

The Maratha military power, administration, and relationship with the Mughals saw fluctuating fortunes under the Chatrapati rulers Shivaji (1630-80), Sambhaji (1680-89), Rajaram (1689-1700), and Shahu (1708-49), and the Peshwas Balaji Vishvanath Bhat (1713-20), Bajirao I (1720-40), Nana Saheb (1740-61), Madhavrao I (1761-72), and Bajirao II.

Maratha Coins and Mints
Kulkarni, G.T.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 19-22

Shivaji issued gold (Shivarayi Hon) and copper (Shivarayi) coins with the Nagari legend Shri Raja Shiva/Chhatrapati. The Peshwas struck gold coins with the Nagari-Persian legend Shri Ganapati and Shah Alam/Shri Pantapradhan. The coins were issued from various state and private mints, including Satara, Panhala, and Chinchwad. The article briefly discusses the mint organization in the Maratha kingdom.

Spiritual Environment: Marathi Bhakti Poetry
Tulpule, S.G.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 23-32

The Bhakti movement came to Maharashtra from the south, and Pandharpur became the main centre and a place of pilgrimage. The important saints of Pandharpur were Jnanadeva, Namdev, Narasimha Sarasvati (c. 1378-1458), Eknath (1533-99), Tukaram (1598-1649) and his disciple Niloba, and Ramdas (1608-81). Mahipati (1715-90) was the most important biographer of the poet saints of Maharashtra.

Spiritual Environment: Verses of Ramdas
Pathan, Y.M.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; p. 33

Text and translations of some verses of Ramdas, a poet-saint of Maharashtra.

Spiritual Environment: Varkaris of Pandharpur
Pathan, Y.M.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 34-35

The Varkari Sampradaya was one of the major and most popular religious sects of Maharashtra. The followers of the sect are devotees of Vithoba -- Shri Vitthala of the pilgrimage centre of Pandharpur. The poet-saints Jñaneshvar and Namdeva gave an impetus to the popularity of the sect.

Spiritual Environment: Samarth Ramdas
Amladi, D.R.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; p. 36

Samarth Ramdas (1608-81), the celebrated poet-saint of Maharashtra and the guru of Shivaji, established his first matha at Takoli. His important compositions include Tirthavali, Parachakra Nirupama, Asmani Sultani, and Dasbodh.

Maratha Forts and Siege Tactics
Deshpande, P.N.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 37-58

The article describes the location and classification of Maratha forts, their architectural features, and administration. Also discussed are the siege tactics of the Mughals and Marathas.

Military Organisation: Arms and Armour
Pant, G.N.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 71-77

Among the various weapons employed by the Marathas were stone missiles, bows and arrows, swords and daggers, clawed weapons, spears and javelins, maces, armour, shields, and guns of different kinds. In their military tactics, the Marathas were initially successful through the bargiri method of indirect warfare, the astute use of forts by Shivaji, and the mobility of the soldiers. Later, however, Maratha military power degenerated, leading to the decline of the Marathas.

Military Organisation: Maratha Navy
Apte, B.K.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 78-84

Shivaji conquered most of the Konkan between 1657 and 1663, and launched a programme of ship-building in 1659. Within a decade, he had a sizeable fleet, which was used in his engagements with the Portuguese, Siddis, and Basrur (south Kanara). The marine forts formed the basic element in the naval strategy of the Marathas. The fleet itself consisted of warships and merchantships. It grew in numbers and tonnage under the Angre family of Maratha navy commanders. With the fall of the Angres, the Maratha navy also declined.

Military Organisation: The Bhavani Sword of Shivaji
Joshi, P.M.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 78-84

The origin of Shivaji's Bhavani sword is shrouded in conflicting accounts -- legendary, literary, and historical. The search for the sword started in the early 19th century. The swords which have received serious consideration as the original Bhavani Talwar are the inscribed scimitar in the collection of Khan Bahadur Bomanji Pudumji of Pune, the sword inscribed "Shri Bhavani" in the Museum at Mhow, the Indian sword in Buckingham Palace, and the Bhavani sword in the collection of the royal family at Satara.

Temple Architecture
Mate, M.S.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 85-98

By the mid-18th century, the Maratha temple received increasing patronage, and eventually assumed a Maratha character. The article discusses the plan and architectural features of Maratha temple design, with notes on the 18th century temples in Maharashtra dedicated to Shiva, Rama, Khandoba, Vateshvar, Omkareshwar, Lakshmi-Narayana, Ganesha, and Parvati.

Maratha Manors
Khare, G.H.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 99-104

Palaces, mansions, and manors are a feature of the later Maratha period. The article discusses the concept, design, plan, and elevation of the wadas (spacious manors) of Maharashtra.

Architecture and Painting: Maratha Wadas - A Way of Life
Kanhere, Gopal Krishna
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 105-112

Discusses the architectural design and decorative features, including plans, of the main building and courtyard of some traditional Maratha wadas or residences of Maratha royalty and nobility.

Architecture and Painting: Mansions and Monasteries of Paithan
Morwanchikar, R.S.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 113-122

Paithan, the ancient city of Pratishthan on the banks of the Godavari, was a flourishing centre of trade and commerce. The Paithan sahukars (merchants) brought living styles with them, resulting in evolved styles of secular architecture which contained elements from Hindu buildings of Gujarat and Rajasthan, and Muslim structures of the Mughals and Deccani Sultans. The article describes the characteristic architectural features of the wadas of the sahukars, and the mathas (Hindu temple monasteries) at Paithan.

Architecture and Painting: Religious and Funerary Monuments of Nagpur
Jamkhedkar, A.P.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 123-130

Most of the mausoleums of Nagpur were constructed during the heyday of the Bhonsale dynasty. There are mausoleums dedicated to the memory of Raghuji I, founder of the Bhonsale House; Raja Bala (1816-17); Kashibai, wife of Raghuji II (1775-1816); and Raghuji III (1826-53). The temples of Nagpur show the prevalence of different temple-styles which filtered in: Orissan, Bengali, Maratha, and the Bhumija style of Malwa, Western India, and the Deccan. The Malhari-Martand temple complex at Hinganghat, built by a feudatory chief of Raghuji II, is profusely endowed with sculptures, both secular and religious.

Architecture and Painting: The Tradition of Painting - Its Origin and Continuity
Mate, M.S.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 131-136

Murals on the walls of palaces and temples in 18th-century Maharashtra were in the tradition of Ajanta, Ellora, and Gharapuri. Maratha society of the 18th century inherited a variety of paintings: illustrated horoscopes, patas, and wooden book-covers.

Architecture and Painting: Miniature Painting
Mate, M.S.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 137-143

The Maratha miniature painting tradition started in c. 1750. It was patronized by Shivaji's grandson Shahu (1710-50) and Peshwa Bajirao. A distinct but short lived school emerged by 1760, with portraiture, court scenes, paintings of divinities, and erotic paintings. The miniatures were in a vigorous and bold style.

Architecture and Painting: Mural Tradition
Chavan, Kamal
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 145-156

The Marathas inherited the mural tradition of the medieval or pre-Maratha period. Almost all surviving murals executed under Maratha patronage belong to the 18th century. Marathi literature of the 13th-18th centuries carries details of the technique and themes of these wall paintings.

Architecture and Painting: Glass Paintings of Maharashtra
Appasamy, Jaya
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 157-162

Glass paintings became fashionable in Maharashtra in the 18th century. They belong to various categories: courtly, religious, and secular. The paintings are made on one side of the glass and framed with the unpainted side uppermost. Indian glass painting is highly ecclectic as well as robustly native, and consists of portraits, religious shrines, marriage mandapas, and pictures from everyday life.

Architecture and Painting: Ganjifa - the Indian Card Game
Khare, G.H.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 163-164

Two varieties of Ganjifa cards were popular: the Dashavatari and Chang-Kanchana, of Hindu and Muslim affiliation, respectively. The game is mentioned in the Babarnama, Ain-i-Akbari, and the Shritatvanidhi, Kridakaushalya, and Ganjifa Khelna texts. In Maharashtra, cards were manufactured in Sawantwadi, and occasionally made of ivory.

Costumes: Attire and Ornaments
Doshi, Saryu
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 165-172

The article describes and illustrates the traditional attire and ornaments of Maharashtrian women, men of Brahmin and other castes, "peasants", and the nobility.

The Marathas of Tanjavur: The Heritage of Tanjavur
Nagaswamy, R.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 173-194

The article provides the chronological succession of the Maratha rulers of Tanjavur (1675-1855), and discusses the contributions of this dynasty in the fields of architecture, painting, metalwork, and literary compositions on dance, drama, and music. The architecture is chiefly functional, such as fortifications and residential buildings. The Darbar Hall in the Tanjore Palace has mural paintings of the rulers, nobility, and deities. Besides murals, the Tanjavur rulers patronized illustrated manuscripts and paintings on ivory, glass, mica, and wood. The bronze images include icons and portrait figures of rulers, nobles, and a Maratha princess.

Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 197-199

A glossary relating to Maratha culture.

Anderson, B.
Vol. 34 No. 2, March 1982; pp. 200-202

A bibliography on Maratha culture, classified into subject references.