(notes edited by Roberta Baldi. We have been grateful for critical comments and suggestions from Alastair Wilson) )
The three Mahratta Wars illustrate how British power led to interference with the succession of native rulers, since the continual threat of war between usurper and usurped made peaceful government and trade impossible. British ascendancy in India made the East India Company the 'policeman' for the native rulers. By a policy of supporting contender or ruler (according to how one or the other was viewed by the British) the Company was able to prevent the Mahrattas from extending their alliances to challenge the position of the British.[Line 18] hookum the OED defines this as “a command, order or instruction from a person in authority”, and gives its immediate root as being Hindi. [A.W.]
A Web of English History, The Age of George III, Wellesley as Governor General: 1797-1805, at this web-site (May 21 2004).