Maharana Pratap

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Portrait of Maharana Pratap-the great Rajput king
Maharana Pratap Singh
Maharana of Mewar
Reign 1 March 1572 - 29 January 1597 (24 years, 327 days)
Coronation 1 March 1572
Predecessor Udai Singh II
Successor Amar Singh I
Born (1540-05-09)9 May 1540
Kumbhalgarh Fort [Mewar]
Died 29 January 1597(1597-01-29) (aged 56)
Burial Cremated in Vandoli village
Spouse Maharani Ajabde
Full name
Maharana Pratap Singh Sisodia
Dynasty Sisodiya
Father Udai Singh II
Mother Maharani Jaiwanta Bai
Religion Hindu
Sisodia Rajputs of Mewar II (1326–1884)
Hammir Singh (1326–1364)
Kshetra Singh (1364–1382)
Lakha Singh (1382–1421)
Mokal Singh (1421–1433)
Rana Kumbha (1433–1468)
Udai Singh I (1468–1473)
Rana Raimal (1473–1508)
Rana Sanga (1508–1527)
Ratan Singh II (1528–1531)
Vikramaditya Singh (1531–1536)
Vanvir Singh (1536–1540)
Udai Singh II (1540–1572)
Maharana Pratap (1572–1597)
Amar Singh I (1597–1620)
Karan Singh II (1620–1628)
Jagat Singh I (1628–1652)
Raj Singh I (1652–1680)
Jai Singh (1680–1698)
Amar Singh II (1698–1710)
Sangram Singh II (1710–1734)
Jagat Singh II (1734–1751)
Pratap Singh II (1751–1754)
Raj Singh II (1754–1762)
Ari Singh II (1762–1772)
Hamir Singh II (1772–1778)
Bhim Singh (1778–1828)
Jawan Singh (1828–1838)
Sardar Singh (1828–1842)
Swarup Singh (1842–1861)
Shambhu Singh (1861–1874)
Sajjan Singh (1874–1884)
Fateh Singh (1884–1930)
Bhupal Singh (1930–1947)

Rana Pratap Singh[1] (About this sound pronunciation ) (9th May 1540 – 29 January 1597) popularly known as Maharana Pratap, was a ruler of Mewar, a region in north-western India in the present day state of Rajasthan. His birth anniversary, known as Maharana Pratap Jayanti, is celebrated annually on the third day of the Jyestha Shukla phase. He was the eldest son of Maharani Jaiwanta Bai and Udai Singh II.[2] He belonged to the Sisodia clan of Rajputs.[3][4] He was succeeded by his eldest son, Amar Singh I.


In 1569 during the reign of Pratap's father, Udai Singh II, Chittorgarh Fort was conquered by the Mughal emperor Akbar after the third Jauhar.[citation needed] Udai Singh and his family had left before the capture and moved to the foothills of the Aravalli Range where Udai Singh had already founded the city of Udaipur in 1559.[5] Rani Dheer Bai wanted her son Jagmal to succeed Udai Singh[6] but senior courtiers preferred Pratap, as the eldest son, to be their king. The desire of the nobles prevailed.[citation needed]

Conflict with the Mughals[edit]

Nearly all of Pratap's fellow Rajput chiefs had meanwhile entered into the vassalage of the Mughals. Pratap's own brothers - Shakti Singh, Jagmal and Sagar Singh - served Akbar,[citation needed] and many Rajput chiefs, such as Man Singh I of Amer, served as commanders in Akbar's armies and as members of his council. Akbar sent a total of six diplomatic missions to Rana Pratap, seeking to negotiate the same sort of peaceful alliance that he had concluded with the other Rajput chiefs.[citation needed] The fifth of these, led by Bhagwan Das, was fruitful in that the Rana of Mewar agreed to put on a robe presented by Akbar and he sent his son, Amar Singh, to the Mughal capital.[citation needed] The missions ultimately failed, however, because the Rana refused personally to present himself to the Mughal court. Since no agreement could be reached, all-out war between Mewar and the Mughals became inevitable.[7][page needed]

Battle of Haldighati[edit]

Main article: Battle of Haldighati

(In 1576, Akbar deputed Man Singh I and Asaf Khan I to lead a force against Maharana Pratap.)[citation needed] The Rana advanced with a force numbering almost half the Mughal numbers and took a position near Haldighati which was at the entrance of a defile.[citation needed] In Pratap's army the main commanders were Gwalior's Ram Shah Tanwar and his three sons,Rawat Krishnadasji Chundawat, Maan Singhji Jhala and Chandrasenji Rathore of Marwar. His army also included Afghans led by Hakim Khan Sur and a small contingent of Bhil tribals headed by Rao Poonjaji fighting alongside him.[8] Anticipating the Mughal attack, the Rana had also devastated the entire region up to Chittor to prevent the Mughal forces access to food and fodder.[citation needed] The Mughals were then guided by Pratap's brother Shakti Singh so that they could face Pratap in the open and with minimum casualties.

The Battle of Haldighati was fought on 18 June 1576 for around 4 hours.[9] It was primarily fought in the traditional manner between cavalry and elephants since the Mughals found it difficult to transport artillery over the rough terrain. In a traditional fight, the Rajputs were at an advantage.( Their impetuous attack led to a crumbling of the Mughal left and right wings and put pressure on the center until reserves, and a rumor of Akbar's arrival, turned the tide and resulted in a Rajput retreat). The heat and fear of ambush resulted in the Mughals deciding not to pursue the Rajputs into the hills. Thus this battle failed to break the existing stalemate. This fight can be viewed as an assertion of local independence arising from local and regional patriotism.[10]

After the Battle of Haldighati[edit]

On the third day after the Battle of Haldighati, on 23 June 1576, Man Singh I conquered Gogunda[11] which was later recaptured by Pratap in July 1576.[12] Pratap then made Kumbhalgarh his temporary capital.[13] After that, Akbar decided to personally lead the campaign against Pratap.[citation needed] In the process, Gogunda, Udaipur and Kumbhalgarh were occupied by the Mughals, forcing the Rana deeper into the mountainous tracts of southern Mewar.[citation needed] Mughal pressure was exerted on the Afghan chief of Jalor, and the Rajput chiefs of Idar, Sirohi, Banswara, Dungarpur, and Bundi. These states, situated on the borders of Mewar with Gujarat and Malwa had traditionally acknowledged the supremacy of the dominant power in the region. Consequently, the rulers of these states submitted to the Mughals. A Mughal expedition was also sent to Bundi where Duda, the elder son of Rao Surjan Hada, had collaborated with Pratap to take control over Bundi and adjacent areas. Both Surjan Hada and Bhoj, the father and younger brother of Duda, took part in this conflict in support of the Mughals. After a Mughal victory, Duda escaped to the hills and Bundi was conferred upon Bhoj. At this point Pratap found himself isolated and marginalised in Rajput affairs.[7][page needed]


Mughal pressure on Mewar relaxed after 1579 following rebellions in Bengal and Bihar and Mirza Hakim's incursion into the Punjab. In 1585, Akbar moved to Lahore and remained there for the next twelve years watching the situation in the north-west. No Mughal expedition was sent to Mewar during this period. Taking advantage of the situation, Pratap recovered many of his lost territories including Kumbhalgarh, Udaipur, Gogunda, Ranthambore and the areas around Chittor, although not Chittor itself. During this period, he also built a new capital, Chavand, near modern Dungarpur.[7][page needed] His successful defiance of Mughals using guerrilla strategy also proved inspirational to figures ranging from Shivaji to anti-British revolutionaries in Bengal.[14]

Personal life[edit]

Maharana Pratap being the head of the Sisodia clan and the ruler of Mewar had lots of responsibility towards Mewar. His duty was not only to protect the region from Mughals but also to restrict the Rajput kings from joining hands with the Mughals. Back then, many of the Rajput rulers gave their hands to Mughal King Akbar to avoid any possible attacks over their region.[citation needed]

This was strictly against Maharana Pratap‘s principle and perhaps that is why over the years Maharana Pratap married many of the Rajput Princess mainly for political alliances. Maharana Pratap altogether had 11 wives and 17 sons & 5 daughters Maharani Ajabde was the first wife of Maharana Pratap. He married her at the age of 17 in the year 1557. Out of this wedlock was born Maharana Pratap’s first son and successor Amar Singh I in the year 1559. Ajabde had one more son Bhagawandas.[citation needed]

The list of his Queens are : Maharani Ajabde Rani Solankhinpurbai, Rani Champa Bai Jhati, Rani Jasobai Chauhan, Rani Phool Bai Rathore, Rani Shahmati Bai Hada, Rani Khichar Ashabai, Rani Alamdebai Chauhan, Rani Ratnawati Parmar, Rani AmarBai Rathore, Rani Lakhabai.

Death and legacy[edit]

Maharana Pratap died of injuries sustained in a hunting accident[15] at Chavand, which served as his capital,[16] on 29January 1597, aged 57.[17] [18] A chhatri (monument) at the site of Pratap's funeral in Chavand is an important tourist attraction.[19]

Television depictions[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Rana Pratap Singh". Encyclopædia Britannica. 
  2. ^ Rana 2004, pp. 28, 105.
  3. ^ Sarkar, Jadunath (1994). A History of Jaipur. p. 48. ISBN 978-8-12500-333-5. 
  4. ^ Daryanani, Mohan B. (1999). Who's who on Indian Stamps. p. 302. ISBN 978-8-49311-010-9. 
  5. ^ Mathur, Pushparani (1994). Costumes of the Rulers of Mewar. p. 22. ISBN 978-8-17017-293-2. 
  6. ^ Lal, Muni (1980). Akbar. p. 135. ISBN 978-0-70691-076-6. 
  7. ^ a b c Chandra 2005.
  8. ^ Rana 2004, p. 54.
  9. ^ Chundawat (9 December 2014), Haldi Ghati War 
  10. ^ Chandra 2006.
  11. ^ Rana 2004, p. 69.
  12. ^ Rana 2004, p. 72.
  13. ^ Rana 2004, p. 76.
  14. ^ Bandyopadhyay, Brishti (2007). Maharana Pratap : Mewar's Rebel King. Rupa Co. 
  15. ^ Sharma, Sri Ram (2005). Maharana Pratap. p. 91. ISBN 978-8-17871-003-7. 
  16. ^ Chandra 2005, p. 122.
  17. ^ "Maharana Pratap - History of Chittorgarh". 
  18. ^ Gupta, R.K.; Bakshi, S.R. (2008). Studies In Indian History: Rajasthan Through The Ages The Heritage of Rajputs (Set Of 5 Vols.). p. 46. ISBN 978-8-17625-841-8. 
  19. ^ "Maharana Pratap Ki Chhatri". Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts. Retrieved 19 March 2013. 


External links[edit]

Maharana Pratap
Born: 9 May 1540 Died: 19 January 1597
Preceded by
Udai Singh II
Sisodia Rajput Ruler
Succeeded by
Amar Singh I