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Battle of Merta
Date10 September 1790
LocationMerta, India
Result Decisive Maratha victory
Flag of the Maratha Empire.svgMaratha Empire Flag of Jodhpur alternate.svgRajputs of Jodhpur
Flag of Jodhpur alternate.svgRathore Cavalry
Naga monks(Ramanandi and Vishnuswami)
Commanders and leaders
Mahadji Scindhia
General de Boigne
Gopal Bhau
Maloji pingle
Sukhji Shinde
Maharaja Vijay Singh
Bhimraj Bhakshi
Gangaram Bhandari
Maheshdas Rathore
Shiv Singh Rathore
30,000 Maratha cavalry[1]
10,000 Campoo musketeers [1]
50 cannons[1]
19,000 Rathore cavalry[2]
3,000 Zard-Kaprawalas (Saffron clad Rathore horsemen)[2][3]
10,000 irregulars[2]
25 cannons[2]
Casualties and losses
1,000 killed or wounded[4] 2,000 killed[4]
3,000 wounded[4]

The Battle of Merta was fought on 10 September 1790 between the Maratha Empire and the Rajputs of Jodhpur which resulted in a decisive Maratha victory.The general of the Jodhpur army, Bhimraj Bakshi fled the battlefield with his horsemen before the battle started but the local Rathore chieftains refused to retreat without a fight.[5]

A French mercenary Benoît de Boigne gives an eyewitness's account of a charge that took place: "it is impossible for me to describe the feats of bravery performed by the Zard-Kaprawalas or forlorn hope of the enemy. I have seen, after their line was broken, fifteen or twenty men only return to charge one thousand infantry, and advance within ten or fifteen paces of our line, before they were all shot." "It is but just to the enemy to acknowledge that, considering the situation in which they were found, and the disorder consequent thereto, they behaved very valiantly, as they actually cut down some of our people at their guns, and two of them with a desperate fury and intrepidity, made at De Boigne himself and might possibly have killed him if they had not been hewn in pieces by his bodyguards."[6]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Fall of the Mughal Empire: 1789–1803, Jadunath Sarkar, p 23
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Fall of the Mughal Empire: 1789–1803, Jadunath Sarkar, p 24
  3. Military History of British India, 1607-1947 Pg-74
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Fall of the Mughal Empire: 1789–1803, Jadunath Sarkar, p 30
  5. Fall of the Mughal Empire: 1789–1803, Jadunath Sarkar, p 26
  6. Fall of the Mughal Empire: 1789–1803, Jadunath Sarkar, p 29


  • Sir Jadunath Sarkar (1992). Fall of the Mughal Empire: 1789–1803. Orient Longman. ISBN 0-86131-749-1. 
  • Sir Jadunath Sarkar (1994). A History of Jaipur 1503–1938. Orient Longman. ISBN 81-250-0333-9. 

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