Book Review | The Last King In India
Twenty decadent facts from the life and times of India's last 'nawab'
The poet-ruler Wajid Ali Shah (1822-87) was the last nawab of the north Indian state of Oudh. Deposed by the British, he spent the last 30 years of his life in a riverside mansion near Calcutta (now Kolkata), where he languished in a mock-kingdom with 6,000 subjects. It was a make-believe world. Many of the exiled king’s high-ranking officials held on to their old titles. To the extent that it was possible, Wajid Ali Shah, whose actual reign lasted only nine years, continued the customs of the court.