Peshwa

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Peshwa

 

(also peishwa), the chief minister of the Maratha state (India) during the rule of Sivaji (17th century) and his successors. The position was hereditary from the time of Balaji Visvanath, a peshwa who became the de facto ruler of the state in the 18th century. The successors of Balaji Visvanath ruled Maharashtra and were considered the sovereigns of the confederation of Maratha principalities until the final occupation of Maratha lands by the British colonizers in 1818.