Provinces of India, earlier Presidencies of British India and still earlier, Presidency towns were the administrative divisions of British governance in the subcontinent. In one form or other they existed between 1612 and 1947, conventionally divided into three historical periods.
*During 1612–1757, the East India Company set up "factories" (trading posts) in several locations, mostly in coastal India, with the consent of the Moghul emperors or local rulers. Its rivals were the merchant trading companies of Holland and France. By the mid-18th century, three "Presidency towns": Madras, Bombay, and Calcutta had grown in size.
*During the period of Company rule in India, 1757–1858, the Company gradually acquired sovereignty over large parts of India, now called "Presidencies." However, it also increasingly came under British government oversight, in effect sharing sovereignty with the Crown. At the same time it gradually lost its mercantile privileges.
*Following the Indian Rebellion of 1857, the Company's remaining powers were transferred to the Crown. In the new British Raj (1858–1947), sovereignty extended to a few new regions, such as Upper Burma. Increasingly, however, unwieldy presidencies were broken up into "Provinces".〔 Quote: "The history of British India falls ... into three periods. From the beginning of the 17th to the middle of the 18th century, the East India Company is a trading corporation, existing on the sufferance of the native powers, and in rivalry with the merchant companies of Holland and France. During the next century the Company acquires and consolidates its dominion, shares its sovereignty in increasing proportions with the Crown, and gradually loses its mercantile privileges and functions. After the Mutiny of 1857, the remaining powers of the Company are transferred to the Crown ..." (p. 5)〕
In 1608, the English East India Company established a settlement at Surat (now in the state of Gujarat), and this became the company's first headquarters town. It was followed in 1611 by a permanent factory at Machilipatnam on the Coromandel Coast, and in 1612 the company joined other already established European trading companies in Bengal. However, following the decline of the Mughal Empire in 1707 by the hands of the Marathas and after the East India Company's victory at the Battle of Plassey in 1757 and Battle of Buxar, both in Bengal 1764, the Company gradually began to formally expand its dominions and collectively call the area India. By the mid-19th century, and after the three Anglo-Maratha Wars the East India Company had become the paramount political and military power in South Asia, its territory held in trust for the British Crown.
Company rule in Bengal, however, ended with the Government of India Act 1858 following the events of the Bengal Rebellion of 1857.〔 From then known as British India, it was thereafter directly ruled by the British Crown as a colonial possession of the United Kingdom, and India was officially known after 1876 as the ''British Indian Empire''. India consisted of regions referred to as ''British India'' that were directly administered by the British, with Acts established and passed in the British Parliament, House of Commons. and other regions, the ''Princely States'', that were ruled by local rulers of different ethnic backgrounds. These rulers were allowed a measure of internal autonomy in exchange for British suzerainty. ''British India'' constituted a significant portion of India both in area and population; in 1910, for example, it covered approximately 54% of the area and included over 77% of the population. In addition, there were Portuguese and French exclaves in India. Independence from British rule was achieved in 1947 with the formation of two nations, the Dominions of India and Pakistan, the latter also including East Bengal, present-day Bangladesh.
The term ''British India'' also applied to Burma for a shorter time period: starting in 1824, a small part of Burma, and by 1886, almost two thirds of Burma had come under ''British India''.〔 This arrangement lasted until 1937, when Burma commenced being administered as a separate British colony. ''British India'' did not apply to other countries in the region, such as Sri Lanka (then Ceylon), which was a British Crown colony, or the Maldive Islands, which were a British protectorate. At its greatest extent, in the early 20th-century, the territory of ''British India'' extended as far as the frontiers of Persia in the west; Afghanistan in the northwest; Tibet in the northeast; and China, French Indo-China and Siam in the east. It also included the Colony of Aden in the Arabian Peninsula.
抄文引用元・出典: フリー百科事典『 ウィキペディア（Wikipedia）』
■ウィキペディアで「Presidencies and provinces of British India」の詳細全文を読む