First, Second & Third Anglo Maratha Wars

  • MarathaThird Peshwa Balaji Baji Rao could not withstand the shock of the defeat of the Marathas in the Third Battle of Panipat & died on June 23, 1761.
  • He was succeeded by his son Madhav Rao.
  • He kept in check the ambition of his brother Raghunath Rao, maintained unity among the Maratha chiefs & nobles and very soon recovered the power and prestige of the Marathas which they had lost in the Third Battle of Panipat.
  • English became conscious of the growing power of the Marathas & wanted to crush their re establishment.
  • They got this opportunity very soon after the death of Madhav Rao in 1772.

First Anglo Maratha War (1775 – 1782)

  • Primary cause; Interference of the English in the internal affairs of the Marathas.
  • Peshwa Madhav Rao was succeeded by his younger brother, Narayan Rao but his uncle, Raghunath Rao, wanted to become the Peshwa & got him murdered.
  • Thus Raghunath Rao, approached the English for help & signed Treaty of Surat (1775) with Bombay Government for the help of English subsidiary troops.
  • By this Treaty, Raghunath agreed to hand over the islands of Salsette & Bassein to the English in return for their help to get Peshwaship.
  • Warren Hastings, the Governor-General of Bengal rejected the treaty.
  • In the beginning, the Marathas defeated British at Talegaon & forced them to sign convention of Wadgaon by which English renounced all their conquest & gave up the cause of Raghunath Rao.
  • Nana Phadnavis signed the Treaty of Purandhar in 1776 with the English, raised his position & defeated Raghunath Rao.
  • A British force under Goddar marched across Central India & after series of victorious battles reached Ahmedabad which he captured in 1780.
  • Ended with Treaty of Salbai in 1782.


  • British possession of Salsette was confirmed & Madhaw Rao Narayan was recognised as Peshwa.
  • Raghunath rao was granted a pension of 3 lakh rupees a year.
  • Treaty of Salbai enabled British to exert pressure on Mysore as Marathas promised to help them in recovering territories from Hyder Ali.

Second Maratha War (1803 – 1805)

  • Maratha Empire consisted of confederation of 5 big chiefs, Peshwas at Poona, Gaikwads at Baroda, Scindhias at Gwalior, Holkars at Indore & Bhonsles at Nagpur, Peshwa being nominal head.
  • Both Scindia & Peshwa had accepted the sovereignty of the English.
  • The Scindia & the Bhonsle entered into the subsidiary alliance by concluding the Treaty of Sarji-I-Arjangaon & the Treaty of Deogaon respectively.
  • Now Holkar alone was left in the field who still avoided their supremacy.
  • Wellesley, now turned his attention towards Holkar, but Yeshwant Rao Holkar proved more than a match for the British.
  • Company made peace with Holkar in 1806 by the Treaty of Rajgat.


  • By Treaty of Deogaon in 1803 the Bhonsle Raja ceded to the Company province of Cuttack & the entire territory west of River Warda.
  • Scindhia concluded the Treaty of Sarji-I-Arjangaon in 1803, surrendered territories between Jamuna & to British.
  • Sir George Barlow who concluded with Holkar the treaty of Rajpurghat in 1805.

Third Anglo Maratha War (1817 – 1818)

  • Tried last attempt to regain their independence & old prestige in 1817.
  • Organising a united front of the Maratha chiefs & was taken over by the Peshwa who was smarting under the rigid control exercised by the British Resident.
  • Finally Maratha confederacy was altogether destroyed.
  • Peshwa was dethroned & pensioned off at Bithur near Kanpur.
  • Maratha confederacy dissolved & Peshwaship abolished.
  • Peshwa’s territories were annexed & Presidency of Bombay came into existence.
  • Holkar accepted subsidiary forces by the Treaty of Mandasor.
  • British occupied Bhonsle’s territory but a small part was given to Raghoji’s son to rule.
  • Small kingdom of Satara was founded out of Peshwa’s land & given to a descendant of Shivaji, Pratap Singh.
  • Also known as Pindari War
  • Warren Hastings assembled a large force to round up & uproot the apparently lawless Pindaris & their chiefs – Karim Khan, Wasil Muhammad & Chintu.
  • Karim Khan submitted & was offered an estate at Gawashpur.
  • Wasil Muhammad was forced to lay down arms & died in captivity and Chintu was defeated.

Anglo Maratha Treaties At a Glance

Treaty of Surat in 1775

  • Signed by Raghunath Rao
  • Promised to hand over Bassein & Salsette to the English.

Treaty of Purandhar in 1776

  • Signed by Madhav Rao II.
  • Company got a huge was indemnity & retained Salsette.

Treaty of Wadgoan in 1779

  • Signed by British & Bombay government.
  • Release all territories acquired by the Bombay office of the East India Company since 1773.

Treaty of Salbai in 1782

  • Signed by Mahadji Scindia.
  • Mutual conflicts increased amongst the Marathas.

Treaty of Bassein in 1802

  • Signed by Baji Rao II.
  • Efective control of not only Maratha & Deccan regions to the Company.

Treaty of Deogaon in 1803

  • Signed by Bhonsle.
  • British supremacy over the Maratha Kingdom.

Treaty of Surji – Arjangaon in 1803

  • Signed by Daulat Rao Scindia.
Causes of the Defeat of the Marathas
  • Lack of capable leadership
  • Military weakness of the Marathas.
  • lack of cooperation amongst themselves.
  • Did not have cordial relations with other princes & Nawabs of India.
  • Failed to estimate correctly the political & diplomatic strength of the British.

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