Begum Hazrat Mahal

Empress of Awadh

Begum Hazrat Mahal (c. 1820 – 7 April 1879), also known as the Begum of Awadh, was the second wife of Nawab of Awadh Wajid Ali Shah, and the regent of Awadh in 1857–1858. She is known for the leading role she had in the rebellion against the British East India Company during the Indian Rebellion of 1857.


  • The queen who was the central protagonist of Awadh’s uprising against British rule hailed from extremely humble origins. Scattered details are all that are extant about her early life. She was born as Muhammadi Khanum to an African slave in Faizabad who was the bonded labourer of one Ghulam Ali Khan.
    • Sampath V. (2022). Bravehearts of Bharat : vignettes from indian history. Penguin Random House India
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