The term is most commonly used in reference to Shivaji Raje Bhonsle, founder of the Maratha Empire, and his eldest son and heir Sambhaji. As described below, Shivaji's linear successors in the royal House of Bhonsle also held the title of Chhatrapati.
The term has various possible derivations:
- From Sanskrit (kshatra, also kshetra [empire/land]+pati [lord/husband]) meaning an emperor
- From Marathi (chatra [roof or umbrella] + Marathi pati [husband]) meaning a king or ruler — Chhatrapati indicates a person who gives shade to his followers and protects their success.
- Another possible derivation of Chhatrapati is "Kshatriya"+"Pati" i.e. Leader or Lord of the Kshatriyas or Warriors.
The Royal House of Chhatrapati Shivaji Raje Bhosale
|Shivaji||c. April 1627 / 19 February 1630||1674 - 1680||3 April 1680|
|Sambhaji||14 May 1657||20 July 1680 - 11 March 1689||11 March 1689|
|Rajaram||24 February 1670||1689 – 1700||3 March 1700|
|Shivaji II||9 June 1696||1700 – 1708||14 March 1726|
|Shahu||18 May 1682||1708 – 1748||15 December 1749|
The royal Bhonsle line then splits into two, the Chhatrapatis of Satara and the Chhatrapatis of Kolhapur:
The Chhatrapatis of Satara
- Shahu (1708–1748)
- Ramraja (1749–1777)
- Shahu II of Satara (1777–1808)
- Pratapsingh (1808–1839)
- Shahaji II of Satara (1839–1848)
- 1848 to Great Britain
- Pratapsinh I (adopted)
- Rajaram III
- Pratapsinh II
- Raja Shahu III (1918–1950)
- Pratapsinhraje (1950–1978)
- Chatrapati Udayanraje Bhonsle– Maharaja (1978 till present)
The Chhatrapatis of Kolhapur
- Tarabai as a regent of Chhatrapati Shivaji II (1700–1708)
- Shivaji I (1700–1712)
- Sambhaji II (1712–1760)
- Shivaji II (1760–1812)
- Shambhu (1812–1821)
- Shahaji (1821–1838)
- Shivaji III (1838–1866)
- Rajaram I (1866–1870)
- Shivaji IV (1871–1883)
- Shahu I (1884–1922)
- Rajaram III (1922–1940)
- Shivaji V (1941–1946)
- Shahaji II (1874–1922)
- Shahu II as titular Maharaja (1983–present) (adopted from Bhosale family of Nagpur)
- Maheshwari, K.K. & K.W. Wiggins (1989). Maratha Mints and Coinage, Nashik: Indian Institute of Research in Numismatic Studies, pp.205–6
- H. S. Sardesai (2002). Shivaji, the great Maratha, Volume 2. Genesis Publishing Pvt Ltd. p. 428. ISBN 978-81-7755-284-3.
- Indu Ramchandani, ed. (2000). Student’s Britannica: India (Set of 7 Vols.) 39. Popular Prakashan. p. 8. ISBN 978-0-85229-760-5.
- ^ V.S. Kadam, 1993. Maratha Confederacy: A Study in its Origin and Development. Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers, New Delhi.
- D.B. Kasar, Rigveda to Rajgarh – Making of Shivaji the Great. Manudevi Prakashan, Mumbai.