Who was Subhadra Kumari Chauhan

Rani Lakshmibai Age, Caste, Husband, Children, Family, History & Biography

Bio / Wiki
Real nameManikarnika Tambe (born)
Nickname (s)Manu Bai, 'Jeanne d'Arc' of the Indian struggle for independence
Personal life
Date of birthNovember 19, 1828
place of birthVaranasi, Uttar Pradesh, India
date of deathJune 18, 1858
Place of deathKotah Ki Serai, near Gwalior, India
Age (at time of death)29 years
Cause of deathmartyrdom
Zodiac / Sun SignScorpio
HometownBithoor District, Cawnpore (now Kanpur), Uttar Pradesh, India
casteMarathi Brahmin
HobbiesHorseback riding, fencing & shooting
Relationships & more
marital statusWidowed (at the time of death)
Wedding dateMay 19, 1842
Husband / spouseMaharaja Gangadhar Rao Newalkar
childrenyou are - Damodar Rao (adopted child)
daughter - None
parentsfather - Moropant Tambe
mother - Bhagirathi Sapre
father in law - Subedar Shivram Bhau
siblingsNot known

Some Lesser Known Facts About Rani Lakshmibai

  • Rani Lakshmibai was born in Kashi (now Varanasi) into a Marathi brahmin family. Her father, Moropant Tambe, was a counselor at the Peshwa Court in the Bithoor District of Uttar Pradesh, and her mother, Bhagirathi Sapre, was a religious woman.
  • Her mother died when she was only four years old and after that her father took care of her and took her to Bithoor where he worked.
  • Her father raised her and motivated her to learn horse riding, fencing and shooting.
  • She liked to ride and had two mares named Sarangi and Pavan and a horse named Badal.
  • She grew up with Nana Sahib (aka Nana Rao Peshwa) and Tantia Tope, who later helped her during the 1857 uprising.

    Tantia Tope

    Nana Rao Peswa

  • In 1842, at the age of fourteen, she married the forty-year-old Gangadhar Rao Newalkar, the then Maharaja of Jhansi.

    Rani Lakshmibai's husband, Gangadhar Rao Newalkar

  • In the past, their kingdom of Jhansi was also known as 'Jhainsi' (meaning rather indistinct).
  • After marriage, she was referred to as 'Lakshmibai', where 'Lakshmi' was the name of a goddess of wealth and 'Bai' was the title of a 'Rani' or a 'Maharani'.
  • It is said that the temple where they both got married is located in Jhansi, Uttar Pradesh and is of great historical importance among the locals.
  • In 1851 she gave birth to a boy named Damodar Rao, who died of a chronic illness four months later.
  • After Damodar Rao's death, her husband Gangadhar Rao adopted his cousin's son, Anand Rao.
  • It is said that Gangadhar Rao could not recover from the death of his son and died in 1853 of his deteriorating health.
  • Rani Lakshmibai was only 25 years old at the time of her husband's death and after him she became the Rani of Jhansi and wanted his son Damodar Rao to rule the rule of Jhansi.
  • After the death of her husband, the British found an easy way to occupy the Jhansi region. In March 1854 the British government had granted her an annual pension of 60,000 rupees and ordered her to leave the fort.
  • The then Governor General of British India, Lord Dalhousie, had applied the Doctrine of Lapse and mentioned that Damodar Rao has no rights under the law to the throne of Jhansi since he was the adopted child of Gangadhar Rao.

    Lord Dalhousie

  • According to the sources, a lawyer of Australian descent named John Lang had filed a petition against Lord Dalhousie's Doctrine of Lapse on June 8, 1854.

    A self-portrait by John Lang

  • To fight the British military, she had assembled the army of 14,000 insurrections, which included many brave warriors such as Tantia Tope, Nana Rao Peshwa, Gulam Gaus Khan, Dost Khan, Khuda Baksh, Deewan Raghunath Singh, Deewan Jawahar Singh and women warriors like Jhalkari Bai, Sundar-Mundar and many more.
  • In 1857 she started an uprising against the British and proclaimed with anger "Mai Apni Jhansi Nahi Dungi" ("I will not let go of my Jhansi"). She fought valiantly against the British with her son Damodar Rao, who was tied on his back and with swords in his hands.

    Portrait of Rani Lakshmibai and her son on the battlefield

  • When General Hugh Rose of the British Army attacked Jhansi with a large army during the uprising of 1857, it was Jhalkari Bai, who had helped Rani Lakshmibai to escape by posing as Rani Lakshmibai; Give Rani Lakshmibai enough time to escape from the back gate of the fortress.

    A sketch by Jhalkaribai

  • On June 17, a large contingent of British troops under the command of General Smith fought with Rani's rebellious army in Kotah ki Serai. According to sources, she eventually succumbed to her injuries after gallant battles against the British. However, Rani wanted her body not to be discovered by British forces. Her personal guards had taken her to nearby Gangadas Mutt, where she was cremated by a hermit after her death. She was reportedly 29 years old at the time of her death.

    The flag used by Rani Lakshmibai in the 1857 War of Independence

  • After her death, Hugh Rose, a senior British officer, described her as smart, beautiful, and the most dangerous leader in India's struggle for freedom, according to a British account of the battle.
  • Her resting place has been converted into a monument called 'Samadhi Sthal by Rani Lakshmibai', which is located in the Gwalior city of Madhya Pradesh.

    Rani Lakshmibai Samadhi Sthal

  • In 2009, a previously undiscovered letter from Rani Lakshmibai was found by scientists. The letter was written by Rani von Jhansi to the Governor General of the East India Company (EIC), Lord Dalhousie. According to the sources, in the letter she had spoken of Lord Dalhousie's fraudulent tricks in annexing her sovereign state of Jhansi.

    A letter from Rani Lakshmibai

  • In May 2010, a picture of a queen was displayed on a postcard commemorating Rani Lakshmibai's ordeal. In fact, the picture published on the postcard was not of Rani Lakshmibai but of Sultan Jehan Begum, Queen of Bhopal, and since then this picture has been used by various publications as the picture of Rani von Jhansi, Lakhsmibai.

    Image of Sultan Jehan Begum on the postcard

  • A famous ballad, 'Khoob Ladi Mardani, Wo To Jhansi Wali Rani Thi', written by Subhadra Kumari Chauhan, is itself an epitome of writing. The song always makes people both jingoistic and nostalgic for the Indian struggle for freedom. Here is the video of the ballad sung by the famous Indian classical singer, Shubha Mudgal in Parliament on the occasion of 150 years of India's First Freedom Movement.

    Subhadra Kumari Chauhan

  • Here is the video showing every corner of the Jhansi fort.

  • There are various films that have portrayed the life of Rani Lakshmibai. Some of them are Jhansi Ki Rani Laxmibai (2012), Jhansi Ki Rani (1953) and many more.
  • In 2018, a Bollywood film called 'Manikarnika' was shot, which was inspired by the life of Rani Lakshmibai, in which her character was played Kangana Ranaut.

    Kangana Ranaut as Rani Lakshmibai in Manikarnika

  • Here is an interesting video on Rani Lakshmibai's biography: