Portrait of Baji Rao I, an artist's impression
Extent of the Maratha Confederacy, 1795
Baji Rao I's handwriting in Modi script.
Statue of Balaji Vishwanath, the first Peshwa from the Bhat family, at Shrivardhan, Raigad district, Maharashtra, India.
Troop movements of Baji Rao I and Asaf Jah I (Nizam-ul-Mulk) in the Battle of Palkhed
Statue of Bajirao I, the second Peshwa from the Bhat family, outside Shaniwar Wada, Pune, Maharashtra, India.
Equestrian statue of Peshwa Baji Rao I outside Shaniwar Wada, Pune
Shaniwar Wada's Delhi Gate. It was the seat of the Peshwas at Pune, Maharashtra, India.
Seal of Bajirao I
His Highness Shrimant Sawai Madhavrao Peshwa or Madhav Rao II Narayan and his Prime minister Nana Phadnavis, with two attendants at Pune.
The Shaniwar Wada fortress in Pune was built as the seat of the Peshwa rulers during Baji Rao's reign.

Baji Rao I (18 August 1700 – 28 April 1740), born as Visaji, also known as Bajirao Ballal (Pronunciation: [bad͡ʒiɾaːʋ bəlːaːɭ]), was the 7th Peshwa of the Maratha Empire.

- Baji Rao I

The Peshwa's office was most powerful under Baji Rao I (r.

- Peshwa

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Maratha Empire

Confederacy that came to dominate a large portion of early modern India in the 18th century.

Confederacy that came to dominate a large portion of early modern India in the 18th century.

The Maratha Empire in 1758 with the Nizam of Hyderabad and the Mughal Empire as its vassals
Maratha kingdom in 1680 (yellow)
A portrait of Shivaji Maharaj
Sambhaji, eldest son of Shivaji
Peshwa Balaji Vishwanath
Peshwa Baji Rao I
Peshwa Balaji Bajirao
Peshwa Madhavrao I
Mahadaji Shinde restored the Maratha domination of northern India
A mural depicting the British surrender during the First Anglo-Maratha War. The mural is a part of the Victory Memorial (Vijay Stambh) located at Vadgaon Maval, Pune.
Peshwa Madhavrao II in his court in 1790, concluding a treaty with the British
Battle of Assaye during the Second Anglo-Maratha War
Peshwa Baji Rao II signing of the Treaty of Bassein with the British
Maratha king of Gwalior at his palace
Pratapgad fort, one of the earliest forts administered by Shivaji.
Maratha darbar or court.
Gold coins minted during Shivaji's era, 17th century.
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Maratha Gurabs ships attacking a British East India Company ship
Arms of Maratha
Ramchandra Pant Amatya
Thanjavur Maratha palace
Maratha Empire at its peak in 1759 (orange)
Maratha Empire in 1760 (yellow)
Maratha Empire in 1765 (yellow)
Maratha Empire in 1795 (yellow)
Maratha Empire in 1805
Maratha Princely States in 1823

The empire had its head in the Chhatrapati as de jure, but the de facto governance was in the hands of the Peshwas after Chhatrapati Shahu I's reign.

After Balaji Vishwanath's death in April 1720, his son, Baji Rao I, was appointed Peshwa by Shahu.

Balaji Vishwanath

A painting of Balaji Vishwanath Peshwa in the Peshwa Memorial at the Parvati Hill temple complex, Pune
An information plaque describing Balaji Vishwanath Peshwa, a part of the Peshwa Memorial at Shrivardhan, Konkan

Balaji Vishwanath Bhat (1662–1720) was the first of a series of hereditary Peshwas hailing from the Bhat family who gained effective control of the Maratha Empire during the 18th century.

He was succeeded by his elder son, the celebrated Baji Rao I, who was appointed Peshwa by Chattrapati Shahu.

c. 1770 Faizabad-style painting of the Third Battle of Panipat; the centre of the image is dominated by the twin arcs of the lines of guns firing at each other with smoke and destruction in between.

Third Battle of Panipat

The Third Battle of Panipat took place on 14 January 1761 between the Maratha Empire and the invading army of the Durrani Afghan Empire.

The Third Battle of Panipat took place on 14 January 1761 between the Maratha Empire and the invading army of the Durrani Afghan Empire.

c. 1770 Faizabad-style painting of the Third Battle of Panipat; the centre of the image is dominated by the twin arcs of the lines of guns firing at each other with smoke and destruction in between.
Extent of the Maratha Empire, 1760
Sadashivrao Bhau
Engraving of a Maratha soldier by James Forbes.
Portrait of Ahmad Shah Durrani
Plan of the Third Battle of Panipat based on Kashi raja (Casi Raja) Pandit's account
Mahadaji Shinde restored Maratha domination over northern India, within a decade after the war.
Map of India in 1765, before the fall of Nawabs and Princely states nominally allied to the emperor (mainly in Green).

The Maratha army was led by Sadashivrao Bhau, who was third-highest authority of the Maratha Empire after the Chhatrapati and the Peshwa.

Under Peshwa Baji Rao, Gujarat, Malwa and Rajputana came under Maratha control.

Shivaji's portrait (1680s) from the collection of British Museum

Shivaji

Indian ruler and a member of the Bhonsle Maratha clan.

Indian ruler and a member of the Bhonsle Maratha clan.

Shivaji's portrait (1680s) from the collection of British Museum
Shivneri Fort
South India at the turn of the 17th century
An early-20th-century painting by Sawlaram Haldankar of Shivaji fighting the Bijapuri general Afzal Khan
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A 20th century depiction of Shivaji's surprise attack on Mughal general Shaista Khan in Pune by M.V. Dhurandhar
Raja Jai Singh of Amber receiving Shivaji a day before concluding the Treaty of Purandar
20th century depiction by M.V. Dhurandhar of Raja Shivaji at the court of Mughal Badshah, Aurangzeb.
Statue of Shivaji opposite Gateway of India in South Mumbai
20th century depiction of the Coronation Durbar with over 100 characters depicted in attendance by M.V. Dhurandhar
Sambhaji, Shivaji's elder son who succeeded him
Sajjangad, where Samarth Ramdas was invited by Shivaji to reside, is now a place of pilgrimage.
Royal seal of Shivaji
Suvela Machi, view of southern sub-plateaux, as seen from Ballekilla, Rajgad
Sindudurg Fort provided anchorages for Shivaji's Navy
Maratha Empire at its peak in 1758
An early-20th-century painting by M. V. Dhurandhar of Shivaji and Baji Prabhu at Pawan Khind
A miniature Bronze statue of Shivaji Maharaj in the collection of the Shri Bhavani Museum of Aundh
Statue of Shivaji at Raigad Fort
A replica of Raigad Fort built by children on occasion of Diwali as a tribute to Shivaji.

Early in his reign, he appointed Balaji Vishwanath and later his descendants, as Peshwas (prime ministers) of the Maratha Empire.

The empire expanded greatly under the leadership of Balaji's son, Peshwa Bajirao I and grandson, Peshwa Balaji Bajirao.

Chitpavan Brahmins practicing Bodan, a rite performed on important occasions like birth or marriage

Maratha Peshwa and Generals from Bhat Family

Prominent Indian Chitpavan Brahmin family who dominated India for around 100 years in the late 18th century and early 19th century.

Prominent Indian Chitpavan Brahmin family who dominated India for around 100 years in the late 18th century and early 19th century.

Chitpavan Brahmins practicing Bodan, a rite performed on important occasions like birth or marriage

Most of the members in this family were the Peshwas (prime ministers) in the Peshwa Era of the Maratha Empire, and Peshwa later became their family name.

Baji Rao I (18 August 1700 – 28 April 1740), also known as Bajirao I, was a noted general who was appointed as the Peshwa by Shahu I of the Maratha Empire in 1720., He is also known as Thorale Bajirao (Bajirao the elder) in Marathi to distinguish him from his grandson and namesake, Bajirao II, the last Peshwa.

Malhar Rao Holkar, Contemporary Painting c. 1770 from Bundi, Rajasthan

Malhar Rao Holkar

Noble subedar of the Maratha Empire, in present-day India.

Noble subedar of the Maratha Empire, in present-day India.

Malhar Rao Holkar, Contemporary Painting c. 1770 from Bundi, Rajasthan
Maratha Empire at its peak in 1758
Chhatri of Malhar Rao Holkar, built by his daughter-in-law Ahilya Bai Holkar, at Alampur, Madhya Pradesh.
Back view of Malhar Rao Holkar's Chhatrisamadhi at Alampur, Madhya Pradesh.

He was one of the early officers along with Ranoji Scindia to help spread the Maratha rule to northern states and was given the estate of Indore to rule by the Peshwas, during the reign of the Maratha emperor Shahu I.

In 1721, having become disillusioned with Bande, Holkar became a soldier in the service of the Peshwa, Bajirao.