British India Coinage - East India Company: Presidency Issues

East India Company: Presidency Issues

The English East India Company was granted a royal charter by Queen Elizabeth I which allowed trade monopoly with eastern countries including Sumatra, Java, and India. The first English settlements or factories in India were established in Masulipatam (1611), Surat (1612), and subsequently in other cities and towns. The territories governed by the East India Company were divided into three major administrative regions: Madras Presidency in the south, Bombay Presidency in the west, and Bengal Presidency in the east. Most of the north, however, for a long time continued to remain under the control of the Mughal emperor, and later, local rulers including the Marathas and Rajputs. Each of the three presidencies under East India Company governance issued their own coins until a unified coinage throughout all territories was introduced in 1835. Early presidency issues often imitated local issues and the Mughal design in order to gain wider acceptance by the native population.

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