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INDIA DURING THE RAJ: EYEWITNESS ACCOUNTS
Diaries and related records held by the European Manuscripts Section in the Oriental and India Office Collections at the British Library, London

Part 1: Diaries and related records describing life in India, c.1750-1842

This project makes available for the first time a wide ranging collection of original manuscript diaries, letters and journals from the European Manuscripts section of the India Office Library.  These provide an extraordinarily rich and diverse series of accounts of life in India under the Raj.

Part 1 comprises around 60 diaries, including:

  • A French account of the relief of Pondicherry (1748);
  • A record of an expedition to Bengal with Clive (1756);
  • The journal of an interpreter on a mission to the Marathas (1775);
  • Descriptions of Calcutta society and politics by a member of the Governor-General's council (1777);
  • The journal of a prisoner of Tipu Sultan (1780-84);
  • Accounts of life in Calcutta by the wives of civil servants (1787-1789);
  • Records of the Mysore wars;
  • Descriptions of Madras social life and gossip from the physician to the Nawab of the Carnatic (1792-93);
  • An account of a journey through Gujerat (1809-10); a voyage up the Ganges to Patna (1821); and travels in Northern India (1830)

Rich in sociological and historical detail the diaries will be invaluable to historians, sociologists, military experts and gender historians. They offer much for research both on the impact of the Raj on Britain and the impact of India on Britain.

Elephant

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