The Sikhs and the Sikh Wars: The Rise, Conquest, and Annexation of the Punjab State

By Charles Gough

Published by Adamant Media Corporation (2004)

The Sikhs, a great power to reckon with since the later part of the 17th century, use from a small land of adherents of mystic teacher, in the line of medieval Indian saints, to a war-like community with political ambition and firm determination to end the oppressive authority and expansion of the Mughal emperors. They were prepared to sacrifice everything for their ideals. Their sacrifices have hardly any parallel in world history. In the early 19th century when the Mughal rule of Delhi was ritually supplanted by the British, the Sikhs came into contact with the latter power. After the death of Maharaja Ranjit Singh who had tactfully provided any serious clashes with the British, confrontation between the British and the Sikhs are called Sikh wars in history. The brave Sikhs would finally be cultured and the state of Punjab annexed by the British only after prolonged wars and sustained political manoeuvres.

This book originally published in 1897, is a comprehensive account of the Sikhs, their religious tenets, organizations, rise to power, state administration and wars with the British. The real value of the book lies in its authenticity as the authors have spared no pains to utilize all powers of information - early published works as well as various unpublished materials. It is a very valuable source book for the history of British India.

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