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Nawab of the Carnatic
Nawab of Arcot
Nawabate of Arcot marked as "Carnatic" at its height of power.
Nawabate of Arcot marked as "Carnatic" at its height of power.
CapitalGingee (1692-1710),
Arcot (1710-1768),
Chepauk (1768-1855)c
Common languagesTamil
Historical eraMughal rule in India

Company rule in India
British Raj
Indian Independence movement

Indian Independence
• Progenitor of family appointed governor
• Established
23 September – 14 November 1751
• Disestablished
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Mughal Empire
Company rule in India
Today part of India

The Nawabs of the Carnatic (also referred to as the Nawabs of Arcot) were the nawabs who ruled the Carnatic region of South India between about 1690 and 1855. The Carnatic was a dependency of Hyderabad Deccan, and was under the legal purview of the Nizam of Hyderabad, until their demise.[1][2] They initially had their capital at Arcot in the present-day Indian state of Tamil Nadu. Their rule is an important period in the history of Carnatic and Coromandel regions, in which the Mughal Empire gave way to the rising influence of the Maratha Empire, and later the emergence of the British Raj.


The old povince known as the Carnatic, in which Madras (Chennai) was situated, extended from the Krishna river to the Kaveri river, and was bounded on the West by Mysore kingdom and Dindigul, (which formed part of the Sultanate of Mysore). The Northern portion was known as the 'Mughal Carnatic', the Southern the 'Maratha Carnatic' with the Maratha fortresses of Gingee and Ranjana-gad. Carnatic thus was the name commonly given to the region of Southern India that stretches from the East Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh in the North, to the Maratha fort of Ranjana-Gad in the south (including Kaveri delta) and Coromandal Coast in the east to Western Ghats in the west.


The Nawabs of the Carnatic trace their origin back to second Caliph Umar ibn al-Khattab.[3] The Nawab of the Carnatic was established by the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb, who in 1692 appointed Zulfikhar Ali Khan as the first Nawab of the Carnatic, with his seat at Arcot as a reward for his victory over the Marathas led by Rajaram.[4] With the decline of Vijayanagara Empire in 1646, the Hindu viceroys Nayaks, established in Madurai, Tanjore and Kanchi made themselves independent, only in their turn to become tributary to the kings of Golconda and Bijapur, who divided the Carnatic between them. The Nawabdom of the Carnatic controlled a vast territory south of the Krishna river. The Nawab Saadatullah Khan I (1710–1732) moved his court from Gingee to Arcot. His successor Dost Ali (1732–1740) conquered and annexed Madurai in 1736. In 1740, the Maratha forces descended on Arcot. They attacked the Nawab, Dost Ali Khan, in the pass of Damalcherry. In the war that followed, Dost Ali, one of his sons Hasan Ali, and a number of prominent persons lost their lives. This initial success at once enhanced Maratha prestige in the south. From Damalcherry the Marathas proceeded to Arcot, which surrendered to them without much resistance. Chanda Sahib 69 and his son were arrested and sent to Niggpur.

Muhammad Ali Khan Wallajah (1749–1795) became the ruler in 1765.

The growing influences of the English and the French and their colonial wars had a huge impact on the Carnatic. Wallajah supported the English against the French and Hyder Ali, placing him heavily in debt. As a result, he had to surrender much of his territory to the East India Company. Paul Benfield, an English business man, made one of his mayor loans to the Nawab for the purpose of enabling him, who with the aid of the English, had invaded and conquered the Mahratta state of Tanjore.

The thirteenth Nawab, Ghulam Muhammad Ghouse Khan (1825–1855), died without issue, and the British annexed the Carnatic Nawabdom, applying the doctrine of lapse. Ghouse Khan's uncle Azim Jah was created the first Prince of Arcot (Amir-e-Arcot) in 1867 by Queen Victoria, and was given a tax free-pension in perpetuity.

List of rulers

Subedar Nawabs of the Carnatic

Name Reign began Reign ended Notes
1 Zulfiqar Khan Nusrat Jung 1692 1703 Son of Asad Khan who is renowned nobleman of Emperor Aurangzeb.
2 Daud Khan Panni 1703 1710 Before he was made Nawab, the Emperor Aurangazeb appointed him as a leading commander

of the Mughal Army.

3 Sa'adatullah Khan I 1710 1732 He was the last Mughal governor who was appointed as Nawab of Carnatic. Having no children,

he adopted his brother Ghulam Ali Khan's son Dost Ali Khan as his own and nominated him as successor.

4 Dost Ali Khan 1732 1740 Nephew of Sa'adatullah Khan I
5 Safdar Ali Khan 1740 1742 Son of Dost Ali Khan
De facto Nawab Muruza Ali Khan November 1742 December 1742 Cousin and Brother-in-Law of Safdar Ali Khan
6 Sa'adatullah Khan II 1742 1744 Son of Safdar Ali Khan.He was murdered in July 1744 at Arcot. So, with him, the first dynasty

of the Nawab of Arcot came to an end.

7 Anwaruddin Khan 1744 3 August 1749 He was the 1st Nawab of Arcot of the second dynasty.

Semi-independent Nawabs of Carnatic

Name Reign began Reign ended
1 Anwaruddin Khan 1744 3 August 1749

Nawabs of Carnatic under European influence

Names Reign began Reign ended Notes
1 Chanda Shahib 1749 1752
2 Muhammad Ali Khan Wala-Jah 3 August 1749 16 October 1795 Son of Anwaruddin Khan
3 Umdat ul-Umara 1795 1801 Son of Muhammad Ali Khan Wala-Jah
4 Azim-ud-Daula* 1801 1819 Nephew of Umdat ul-Umara
5 Azam Jah 1819 1825 Son of Azim-ud-Daula
6 Ghulam Muhammad Ghouse Khan 1825 1855 Son of Azam Jah.

He died in 1855 at the age of 31. He did not leave behind any male heir.

Princes of Arcot

Amir Reign Notes
Azim Jah 1867–1874 younger son of Azim-ud-Daula

The Chepauk Palace, the official residence of the princes of the Carnatic had been taken over by the British in 1859.

He constructed a new residence, the Amir Mahal, in Royapettah.

Sir Zahir-ud-Daula Bahadur 1874–1879 Son of Azim Jah
Intizam-ul-Mulk Muazzal ud-Daula Bahadur 1879–1889 younger son of Azim Jah
Sir Muhammad Munawar Khan Bahadur 1889–1903 nephew of Intizam-ul-Mulk
Sir Ghulam Muhammad Ali Khan Bahadur 1903–1952 Son of Muhammad Munawar Khan
Ghulam Mohiuddin Khan Bahadur 1952–1969 younger son of Muhammad Munawar Khan
Ghulam Mohammed Abdul Khader 1969–1993 Son of Ghulam Mohiuddin Khan
Muhammed Abdul Ali 1993– Son of Ghulam Mohammed Abdul Khader


See also


  1. ^ Publishing, Britannica Educational (1 April 2010). The History of India. Britannica Educational Publishing. p. 219. ISBN 9781615302017.
  2. ^ Ramaswami, N. S. (1 January 1984). Political History of Carnatic Under the Nawabs. Abhinav Publications. p. 104. ISBN 9780836412628.
  3. ^ "The Hindu : Tamil Nadu / Chennai News : Web site on Nawabs of the Carnatic". Retrieved 18 March 2018.
  4. ^ "Mughal Empire 1526-1707 by Sanderson Beck". Retrieved 4 March 2012.
  5. ^ Terence R. Blackburn. A miscellany of mutinies and massacres in India.

External links

This page was last edited on 21 September 2020, at 15:21
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