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Imperial Gazetteer of India, v. 21, p. 47.


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RAIGAR.H 47
being 33 per cent. A dispensary is maintained at Raigarh town,
at which 37,000 persons were treated in 1904. A Political Agent
under the supervision of the Commissioner, Chbattisgarh Division,
controls the relations of the State with Government.
Raigarh Town.-Head-quarters of the Feudatory State of the
same name, Central Provinces, situated in 21 54' N. and 83 24' E.,
on the Kelo river, and on the Bengal-Ngpur Railway, 363 miles from
Calcutta. Population (igoi), 6,764. The town contains an old fort
built at the time of the Maratha invasions. Raigarh is a centre for
local trade, and is increasing in importance. The principal industry
is the manufacture of tasar silk cloth, considerable quantities of which
are exported. Glass bangles are also made. Raigarh possesses an
English school, a primary school, a girls' school, and a dispensary.
Raigarh (or `The Royal Fort,' originally called Rairi, and known
to the early European traders as `the Gibraltar of the East').-Hill
fort in the Mahad tluka of Kolaba District, Bombay, situated
in 18 14' N. and 73 27' E., 32 miles south-west from Poona. It
stands on the Western Ghts, and was regarded in the last century
as one of the greatest strongholds of India. Its scarped sides and
long top form a great wedge-shaped block, cut off from the Western
Ghats by a deep valley about a mile broad at the base and 2 miles
across from crest to crest. The hill-top, 2,851 feet above sea-level,
stretches about a mile and a half from east to west by a mile from
north to south. On the west, south, and east, the hill-sides are so
steep that, excepting the gateways in the west and south faces, there
are no artificial defences. The north-west face is protected by a main
line of masonry and two upper walls or portions of walls where the
natural scarp is imperfect. Its size, strength, and its easy communica-
tion with the Deccan and with the sea must from early times have
made Raigarh an important fortress. But its time of magnificence
as the capital of a great sovereign was from 1664 to 1680, the last
sixteen years of Sivaji's reign.
In the twelfth century Rairi was the seat of a family of petty
Maratha chiefs. In the fourteenth century these chiefs acknowledged
the Vijayanagar princes as their overlords.. About the middle of the
fifteenth century, Al-ud-din Shah Babmani II compelled the Raid
chief to pay tribute. In 1479 Rairi passed to the Nizm Shhi Sultans
of Ahmadnagar, and was held by them till 1636. On the final con-
quest of Ahmadnagar, the Mughals made Rairi over to the Adil Sh,~hi
Sultans of Bijapur. Under the name of Islartlgarh, it was: then .made
over to the Sidi of Janjira, and garrisoned by _a body of Maraths `-'In
1648 Rairi fell into the hands of Sivaji, who in 16-62; after diligent
search, chose the hill for his capital, changing the name to Raigarh.
The royal and public buildings are said to have numbered three
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