Sambhaji Raje Bhosale (Photo Credits: Wikimedia Commons)
Sambhaji Bhosale was the second ruler of the Maratha Empire. Sambhaji was the eldest son of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, the founder of Maratha Kingdom, and his first wife, Saibai. Sambhaji Raje was born on May 14, 1657, at Purandar fort. He became the ruler of the Maratha Empire at the age of 23 years on July 20, 1680. The year 2020 marks the 340th anniversary of Sambhaji’s Rajyabhishek (coronation). Rajmata Jijabai Jayanti 2020: Celebrating The Valour of 17th Century Maratha Queen Who Was the Pillar of Swaraj Movement.
After Shivaji’s death, his second wife Soyarabai with the help of influential sardars including ministers Annaji Datto and Peshawa Moropant Pingale conspired against Sambhaji. She installed, Sambhaji’s half-brother, 10-year-old Rajaram, on the throne. However, on June 18, 1680, Sambhaji acquired control of Raigad fort, and he formally ascended the throne on July 27, 1680. Chhatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj Balidan Divas: 10 Facts About the Brave Maratha Hero That Makes Him Legendary.
Facts About Sambhaji Raje Bhosale:
- Sambhaji’s Mother, Saibai died when he was two years old, and he was raised by his paternal grandmother Jijabai.
- He was sent to live with Raja Jai Singh I of Amber as a political hostage to ensure compliance of the Treaty of Purandar when he was only nine-years-old.
- Sambhaji was married to Jivubai. Later she changed her name to Yesubai. She gave birth to a daughter named Bhavani Bai and then to a son named Shahu.
- He attacked Burhanur in 1680. His forces completely routed the Mughal garrison and punitively executed captives.
- In 1681, Prince Akbar (son of Mughal emperor Aurangzeb) had rebelled against his father and sought refuge with Sambhaji.
- Sambhaji fought close to 150 battles but remained unbeaten in all of these.
- In 1684 Sambhaji signed a defensive treaty with the English at Mumbai, then Bombay.
- Sambhaji invaded Mysore in 1686, accompanied by his Brahmin friend and poet Kavi Kalash
- In the Battle of Wai of 1687, Maratha forces were badly weakened by the Mughals. Ganoji Shirke informed Aurangzeb’s general about Sambhaji’s secret position. He along with Kalash was captured by the Mughal forces of Muqarrab Khan in a skirmish at Sangameshwar in February 1689. Sambhaji Maharaj Jayanti 2019: Know Legends About The Great Maratha Ruler’s Connection With South Indian Dish ‘Sambar’.
Sambhaji was tortured to death by Aurangzeb. According to Marathas, Aurangzeb tortured Sambhaji to death for not accepting Islam. He died on March 11, 1689. Sambhaji is regarded as a great king and warrior himself. He was sophisticated, educated and well-versed in a few languages other than Marathi. After Sambhaji’s death, his half-brother Rajaram Chhatrapati assumed the throne.