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Regal read

Regal read
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First Published: Wed, Nov 30 2011. 03 35 PM IST

Updated: Wed, Nov 30 2011. 03 35 PM IST
History in store: The library at the new Moti Bagh Palace in Patiala. Photo: Getty Images
Piqued by the princes? Mesmerised by the maharajas? Mint Indulge spoke to Priya Kapoor, director of Roli Books, and publisher of several volumes on Indian nobility. This is her selection of hand-picked titles to start your libary on the potentates of the past.
The Unforgettable Maharajas (one hundred and fifty years of photography) It was the first book with such a comprehensive collection of photographs of maharajas, their lifestyles and palaces. Each picture was sourced from the royal families and archives—therefore, most of them had never been seen before.
Authors: E Jaiwant Paul and Pramod Kapoor
Publisher: Roli Books
Pages: 128 (hardcover)
Price: $194.70
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Maharajas’ Jewels An important book on jewellery traditions—pictures of some beautiful, neverseen-before pieces were sourced and included in the book.
Authors: Katherine Prior and John Adamson
Publisher: Vendome Press
Pages: 208 (hardcover)
Price: $595
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The Lafayette Studio and Princely India The story of how these longforgotten glass negatives were found and finally ended up becoming a major exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum and then a book we commissioned is fascinating. As are the pictures and the Lafayette studio itself. Indian royals used to get themselves photographed at the studio before being presented to the Queen while visiting London. Over time, Lafayette became so popular with the Indian royals that he visited India and set up a studio for a short period of time.
Author: Russell Harris
Publisher: Roli Books
Pages: 64 (paperback)
Price: $10.50
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Reversing The Gaze: Amar Singh’s Diary, A Colonial Subject’s Narrative Of Imperial India Amar Singh kept a daily diary and recorded with detail the places he visited, the people he met, life as a soldier, court intrigues. He was a part of the Durbar and WW I—his diaries provide a first-hand account from an Indian perspective—which is quite rare as very few people like him were writing/recording these historical events taking place.
Author: Amar Singh
Publisher: Basic Books
Pages: 650 (hardcover)
Price: $1.90
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A Princess Remembers: The Memoirs of the maharani of jaipur A charmed life, fairy-tale romance and great tragedy. A well-written interesting memoir by a woman rated by Vogue as one of the 10 most beautiful women in the world.
Authors: Gayatri Devi and Santha Rama Rau
Publisher: South Asia Books
Pages: 334 (paperback)
Price: $23.64
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Made for Maharajas: A Design Diary of Princely India ‘‘I worked on the book for two years, and enjoyed visiting all the families and rummaging through their storerooms looking at guns, walking sticks, tea cups, clothes!” Amin’s text highlights some interesting, lesser-known aspects of Indian royalty—they were great patrons of the arts and almost entirely kept the luxury jewellery industry in Europe alive during the war years.
Author: Amin Jaffer
Publisher: Roli Books
Pages: 276 (hardcover)
Price: $71.93
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First Published: Wed, Nov 30 2011. 03 35 PM IST