1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Bharatpur
BHARATPUR, or Bhurtpore, a native state of India, in the Rajputana agency. Its area covers 1982 sq. m. The country is generally level, about 700 ft. above the sea. Small detached hills, rising to 200 ft. in height, occur, especially in the northern part. These hills contain good building stone for ornamental architecture, and in some of them iron ore is abundant. The Banganga is the only river which flows through the state. It takes its rise at Manoharpur in the territory of Jaipur, and flowing eastward passes through the heart of the Bharatpur state, and joins the Jamna below Agra.
Bharatpur rose into importance under Suraj Mall, who bore a conspicuous part in the destruction of the Delhi empire. Having built the forts of Dig and Kumbher in 1730, he received in 1756 the title of raja, and subsequently joined the great Mahratta army with 30,000 troops. But the misconduct of the Mahratta leader induced him to abandon the confederacy, just in time to escape the murderous defeat at Panipat. Suraj Mall raised the Jat power to its highest point; and Colonel Dow, in 1770, estimated the raja’s revenue (perhaps extravagantly) at £2,000,000 and his military force at 60,000 or 70,000 men. In 1803 the East India Company concluded a treaty, offensive and defensive, with Bharatpur. In 1804, however, the raja assisted the Mahrattas against the British. The English under Lord Lake captured the fort of Dig and besieged Bharatpur, but were compelled to raise the siege after four attempts at storming. A treaty, concluded on the 17th of April 1805, guaranteed the raja’s territory; but he became bound to pay £200,000 as indemnity to the East India Company. A dispute as to the right of the succession again led to a war in 1825, and Lord Combermere captured Bharatpur with a besieging force of 20,000 men, after a desperate resistance, on the 18th of January 1826. The fortifications were dismantled, the hostile chief being deported to Benares, and an infant son of the former raja installed under a treaty favourable to the company. In 1853 the Bharatpur ruler died, leaving a minor heir. The state came under British management, and the administration was improved, the revenue increased, a system of irrigation developed, new tanks and wells constructed and an excellent system of roads and public buildings organized. Owing to the hot winds blowing from Rajputana, the climate of Bharatpur is extremely sultry till the setting in of the periodical rains.
In 1901 the population was 626,665, a decrease of 2%. The estimated revenue is £180,000. The maharaja Ram Singh, who succeeded his father in 1893, was deprived of power of government in 1895 on the ground of intemperate conduct; and in 1900 was finally deposed for the murder of one of his personal attendants. He was succeeded by his infant son Kishen Singh. During his minority the administration was undertaken by a native minister, together with a state council, under the general superintendence of the political agent. Imperial service cavalry are maintained. The state is traversed for about 40 m. by the Rajputana railway.
The City of Bharatpur is 34 m. W. of Agra by rail. The population in 1901 was 43,601, showing a decrease of over 23,000 in the decade. The immense mud ramparts still stand. It has a handsome palace, a new hospital and a high school. There are special manufactures of chauris, or flappers, with handles of sandalwood, ivory or silver, and tails also made of strips of ivory or sandalwood as fine as horse-hair.