CONTENTS:- 1. The dynasty of Awadh; 2. Wajid Ali Shah: 1847-1856 A.D.; 3. Wajid Ali Shah: a patron of art: drama; 4. Wajid Ali Shah: patron of Kathak; 5. Wajid Ali Shah: poet and patron of literature.
This volume deals with the life and times of the Tragic King, Wajid Ali Shah the last Nawab of Awadh. It unfolds the history of the dynasty of the Nawabs of Awadh. Their rise and the supremacy at the court of the later Mughal Emperors and the formation of the Kingdom of Awadh. It deals in depth about the life and times of Wajid Ali Shah, and tells the story of the colonial conspiracy which resulted in the annexation of Awadh by Dalhousie. For the first time, this volume unfolds the new facets of Wajid Ali Shah, as a genius. Wajid Ali Shah was the man who revolutionised the dance of Kathak, by introducing Thumri, costume, ballet, and the elegance (nazaqat) to it. It was Wajid Ali Shah as a playwright who wrote the play in 1843 which may be called the first play of Hindustani theatre. By dramatising his poems and staging them as Rahas at Kaisar Bagh introduced total theatre to Indian theatre. Wajid Ali Shah was a poet and was author of about 60 books. He was a great patron of art and culture. He was a beloved and a benevolent King, a patriot and secular ruler. But tragically like the hero of Greek tragedy became the victim of the colonial conspiracy.