Friday, July 1, 2016

Tipu Sultan - the Tiger of Mysore

Tipu Sultan (20 November 1750 – 4 May 1799), also known as the Tiger of Mysore, was the Indian ruler who resisted the East India Company’s conquest of southern India. Opinion in England considered him a vicious tyrant, while modern Indian nationalists have hailed him as a freedom fighter.

A flintlock blunderbuss, built for Tipu Sultan in Srirangapatna, 1793–94.

In the Fourth Anglo-Mysore War, the combined forces of the British East India Company and the Nizam of Hyderabad defeated Tipu, and he was killed on 4 May 1799 while defending his fort of Srirangapatna.

Tipu's Tiger, c.1790 (wood). Made for the amusement of Sultan Tipu; the tiger has a miniature organ with keyboard and bellows to simulate the groans of a dying British officer.

Inscribed Sword of Tipu Sultan

Cannon used by Tipu Sultan at Srirangapatna in 1799
A gem-set sword bearing the head of a tiger from the armoury of Tipu Sultan headlined a sale at Bonhams. The lot made £2.1m ($3.1m) when it crossed the block in 2014.

A gem-encrusted gold tiger finial from the throne of Tipu Sultan sold for £434,400.
Tipu Sultan ruled a vast swathe of southern India during the 18th century. He fought ferociously against the encroachments of the British East India Company, but was ultimately defeated.

'In this world I would rather live two days like a tiger, than two hundred years like a sheep.' - Tipu Sultan
A 3-pounder bronze cannon sold for £1.4m ($2.1m).

A flintlock pistol with left-hand lock, made for Tipu Sultan at Seringapatam, dated AD 1797-98.

Inscription on the barrel reads: 'The peerless rifle of the Khusraw of India to which the forked lightning in second can seal the enemy's fate if his forehead is made the target.'
A two shot superimposed-load silver-mounted Flintlock from the armoury of Tipu Sultan, dated AD 1793-94.

A pair of silver-mounted Flintlock pistols with left and right-hand locks, made for Tipu Sultan, dated AD 1794-95. Sold For: £134,500

A Tipu Sultan sword fitted with a captured English blade.