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Sikh Battle Standard


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Here is one for those with deep pockets !!

A Battle Standard up for auction at Christie's London - 25 Sept 2005

Guide price is 6000 to 8000 pounds ! !



Lot Description


Early 19th century

The crimson silk triangular field painted with mica flower sprigs and a central sunburst emblem on the front and the figure of Durga mounted on a lion on the verso, mounted on spear-headed poles

79in.(190cm.) x 101in. (242cm.)


Colstoun House, Haddington, East Lothian, Scotland


See "The Sikh Army" by Ian Heath, published by Osprey Publishing for an image of the flag taken from the Illustrated London News of 19 Dec 1846.

Lot Notes

James Andrew Broun Ramsay succeeded to the title of 10th Earl of Dalhousie in 1838. Among his appointments were President of the Board of Trade in 1845. His appointment as Governor General of India between 1847-56 covered a most eventful period for the sub-continent and particularly for the Punjab. Dalhousie twice set up Sikh puppet administrations to rule over the Punjab, having first taken steps to limit their power and extract considerable reparations. He was a shrewd judge and saw that early annexation would over-stretch his administrative and military powers.

The Punjab was finally annexed in 1849 after the battle of Gujarat, where, according to family legend, these standards were used. However, they were originally purchased by Lord Dalhousie at the sale of the Lahore Toshkana (Royal Treasury) circa 1830-40.

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Here is a better picture - from the sale catalogue from the original Coulstoun Sale. (Coulstoun - Haddington, East Lothian - Mon 21st & Tues 22nd May 1990 - Sotheby's)

You can seen Durga on her Lion more clearly in this picture. ( To be honest not very clearly - but better than the Christie's picture ! )

The Guide price in 1990 was £2000 to £3000 - However that was for a set of 10 standards


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