"Never bend your head, always hold it high."
Shivaji Bhonsle, popularly known as Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj was one of the most progressive and sensible rulers in the history of our country. This Indian warrior king with the help of well structured administrative organisation and military established a liberal civil rule. The stories of his bravery and victories are countless.
Coming on to Shivaji Maharaj's family tree, he was the first Chhatrapati and founder of Maratha Empire. Ekoji was his younger brother, son of Shahaji Raje Bhosale and Tukabai. He discovered Maratha Empire in Thanjavur. Sambhaji Shahaji Bhosale was the elder brother of Shivaji Maharaj. His mother was Jijabai. Shivaji married Saibai who gave birth to Chhatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj. He was the second ruler of the Maratha Empire. Chhatrapati Rajaram Maharaj was his second son; his mother was Soyarabai. He was the third emperor of the Maratha kingdom. Shivaji's other children were Sakhubai, Ranubai, Ambikabai, Deepabai, Rajkunvarbai and Kamlabai. Chhatrapati Shivaji II, fourth ruler of the Empire, he was the son of Rajaram Maharaj and Rani Tarabai. Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj became the fifth Chhatrapati of Maratha Empire. He was the son of Sambhaji Maharaj and Yesubai.
His words make us admire him even more. Here I've compiled some of the Shivaji Maharaj's photos and a few unknown facts about the greatest Maratha ruler. Have a look!
According to A Social History of India, Shivaji got his name after the Goddess Shivai and not from Lord Shiva. He gained the importance and reputation of God, for his deeds and not by the name. Shivaji's photo is of the Raigad Fort. Talking about Shivaji Maharaj's story, he was born near the city of Junnar in Pune district, in the hill-fort of Shivneri, on 6 April 1627 or 19, Feb 1630 but the Maharashtra government considered 19 Feb 1630 as his birth date. Shivaji was named after the goddess, Shivai to whom his mother, Jijabai had prayed for a healthy child. His father, Shahaji Bhonsle was a Maratha general.
Shivaji encouraged freedom of religion and opposed forced conversions. Surprisingly, he was extremely secular and easily adapted all the religions. Being a king of Hindu origin, he had many Muslims in his army.
"Verily, Islam and Hinduism are terms of Contrast. They are used by the true Divine Painter for blending the colours and fillings in the outlines. If it is a mosque, the call to prayer is chanted in remembrance of Him. If it is a temple, the bells are rung in yearning for HIM alone." - Shivaji Maharaj
A quote that shows he was truly a secular leader.
King Shivaji was always there to help people who wanted to convert to Hinduism. In fact, he married his own daughter to a converted Hindu. A king like Shivaji will always live in our hearts. Throughout his life, religious teachings had a great impact on him. His courageous acts and sayings have inspired millions. He was extremely merciful towards those who surrendered and welcomed them into his army.
According to Learning and Creativity, Shivaji helped Aurangzeb in conquering Bijapur. Things boomeranged because two of his officers raided the Mughal emperor in the Ahmednagar.
"If a tree which is not a highly elevated living entity, can be so tolerant and merciful to give sweet mangoes even when hit by anyone; Being a King, should I not be more merciful and tolerant than the trees? "
According to Drakenn, when Shivaji's father left the throne, he just had 2000 men in the army. Through his intelligence and skills, he developed a good army. He also excelled in warfare strategies. He was practical, and his tactics helped his troops to win the battle. In fact, he participated in the wars.
"Even if there were swords in the hands of everyone, it is willpower that establishes a government."
According to Cornered Zone, he was smart enough to protect his kingdom from foreign invaders. He built naval forts to protect the coastlines. Also, he always encouraged his troops to fight for the country and not for any particular king. His goal was to establish an independent kingdom in the country.
According to a blog post, Shivaji defeated Afzal Khan in a one-on-one battle. Afzal Khan was much superior to Shivaji in size and strength. They met in a hut and were allowed to carry a single sword. As stated earlier, he was intelligent, and he knew that he would be attacked, so he wore a covering inside to protect his body which stopped Khan's dagger.
According to Hindu History, Shivaji stood for the honour and pride of women. He made sure that the crimes against women are severely taken care, and the criminals are punished. In his kingdom, nobody was allowed to dishonour women.
His one of the famous sayings, "Of all the rights of women, the greatest is to be a mother."
At the age of 52, Shivaji fell ill with fever and dysentery. Though, he was titled-tattled to have died because of his second wife who had poisoned him so that the crown may pass on to her son. The other reason was that he had died of a curse from Jan Muhammad of Jalna.
According to India Today In Education, he never allowed his army to attack at households and religious places. He did not give personal weapons to his military so that they are not misused. He was very considerate and humble towards local people. All that which was looted from the enemies was used for military's welfare.