On Longmans’ maps of the time, the distinct furrows marking the world’s highest peaks dominate the narrow state snaking to the north-east borders of an expansive India, hued pale pink for British supremacy. Coloured a soft green for its proud, independent status, the country of “Nepaul” which was never colonised faced cities such as Oudh, “Behar” and Bengal further down.

The so-called “protected states” of the giant “Rajpootana,” “Gujerat,” “Bundelcund,” Mysore and Travancore are painted a symbolic rich gold, like Hyderabad and Aurangabad the huge hereditary princely kingdoms deemed “Dominions of the Nizam” a wealthy Muslim suzerain who was the first to agree to subjugation through British “paramountcy” signing an early subsidiary alliance agreement. The system would provide easy recruitment of subjects and a crucial base of support for the colonisers as they spread global dominion through the 19th and early 20th centuries…..