12 Sons of Tipu Sultan

Tipu Sultan had twelve sons at the time of his death during the 4th Anglo-Mysore war in 1799. When Srirangapatna was captured on 4 May 1799, Tipu's sons, his zenana, and his brother Karim Sahib were all taken as prisoners.

After the British gained control of Mysore, they restored it to the Wodeyars. The Vellore fort in the Carnatic region was chosen as the residence for Tipu's family. Each of the princes was granted an annual pension. However, following the Vellore Mutiny, they were exiled to Calcutta.

Presented here are the paintings of Tipu's nine sons, although their order may not be entirely accurate. These exquisite works of art were created by the talented Thomas Hickey, as well as an unknown artist whose skill is equally impressive.

I have also included an account of Lord Valentia's visit to Tipu Sultan's sons in Vellore in February 1804.

1. Fateh Hyder:

Fateh Hyder was the eldest son of Tipu Sultan. He surrendered himself to the British on 13 May. He is said to have closely resembled his father.

Prince Fateh Hyder (artist not known)

Lord Valentia's account of Fateh Hyder, 'the eldest but illegitimate son', reveals that he has a large family of twelve or fourteen children. "Futty Hyder, as well as his next three brothers, have Rs. 50,000 each per annum; a much larger sum than he really received during his father's life-time, though he was nominally in possession of a larger jagir. Yet probably he has lost more than any by the deposing of his family; for although Tipu certainly did not intend him to succeed to the throne, yet, as he was the only one known to the troops and was by no means unpopular, it seems likely that he could have seized the succession. Futty Hyder conducts himself with the utmost propriety."

Fateh Hyder accompanied his father Tipu Sultan constantly during the 3rd Anglo-Mysore war. He had distinguished himself in the relief of Gurramkonda, showcasing his exceptional skills and courage.

Fateh Hyder died on July 30, 1815, at Russapugly, Calcutta. His death is thus recorded in the Calcutta Gazette of August 3, 1815. "Futtih Hydur, the eldest son of the late Tippoo Sultan, died at Russapugla, last Sunday morning. The funeral was attended by Colonel Hawkins, who has charge of the Mysore Princes, John Eliot, Esquire, and a great number of Natives."

2. Abdul Khaliq:

Abdul Khaliq, the second son of Tipu Sultan, was one of the two hostages delivered to Lord Cornwallis followed by the Treaty of Srirangapatna in 1792. On May 5th, the morning following the fall of Srirangapatna, Abdul Khaliq surrendered to the British.

Also Read: Life of the Mysorean Hostage Princes in Madras

Abdul Khalik (Thomas Hickey)

Abdul Khaliq's surrender to the British was met with a cordial reception from General Baird. Baird conveyed to Abdul Khaliq the unfortunate news that Tipu Sultan may have died during the assault and that the remains of a man believed to be him were in the palace. "Upon receiving this news, Abdul Khaliq betrayed not the smallest symptom of emotion." He proposed sending one of his attendants to ascertain the truth. The attendant returned with a report of the Sultan's death, which the son received with complete indifference, as documented by British records.

However, Abdul Khaliq unguardedly expressed a desire to see his deceased father. When the curtain was drawn to reveal the body in the palanquin, he viewed it without showing any visible emotion.

"It will scarce be credited that when the curtain of the palanquin was drawn aside and he beheld his father's corpse that he showed no emotion either of pity or grief, but turning with seeming indifference from a sight, which affected even common beholders," noted Major Allan.

Abdul Khaliq then asked Colonel Wellesley to expedite the burial process and requested that the body be placed in Hyder Ali's tomb at Lal Bagh.

Abdul Khaliq died on December 1, 1807.

Also Read: The Hostage Princes: Surrender of Abdul Khaliq and Muiz-ud-din to Lord Cornwallis

3. Muiz-ud-din (1774-1818):

Maiz-ud-din (Thomas Hickey)

Muiz-ud-din was the younger of the two hostages sent to Lord Cornwallis in 1792. He surrendered himself to the British on 4 May, 1799, following the capture of Srirangapatna. Lord Valentia reported that Major Marriott, the officer-in-charge at Vellore fort, had a great deal of trouble with Muiz-ud-din due to his misconduct. He spends all his money on buying dancing girls, running up debts and even committing the murder of a female servant in the harem.

Also Read: Reception of the Mysore Hostage Princes - Various Depictions

Muiz-ud-din was suspected of his involvement in the Vellore Mutiny on 10 July 1806. He died at Fort William while in confinement on March 30, 1818, at the age of forty-four.

Also Read: Return of Mysorean Hostage Princes to Srirangapatna

4. Muhi-ud-din, known as Sultan Padshah:

Sultan Mohiuddin (Thomas Hickey)

Muhi-ud-din was the legitimate son of Tipu Sultan. His name comes first in Kirmani's list of Princes. Muhi-ud-din died on September 30, 1811, at Calcutta.

Also Read: Heir Apparent of Tipu Sultan

5. Yasin:

Prince Yasin, fifth son of Tipu Sultan by Thomas Hickey
Yasin Sahib (Thomas Hickey)

Yasin died at Calcutta on March 15, 1849.

6. Subhan:

Prince Subhan, sixth son of Tipu Sultan, by Thomas Hickey
Subhan Sahib (Thomas Hickey)

Subhan died at Calcutta on September 27, 1845.

7. Shukr-ullah:

Shukar Ullah (Thomas Hickey)

The drawing of Shukr-ullah by Thomas Hickey bears an inscription that identifies him as the beloved son of Tipu Sultan. Shukr-ullah died at Calcutta on September 25, 1837.

8. Ghulam Muhammad (1795-1872):

Prince Ghoolam Mohammed (artist not known)

Ghulam Muhammad built the famous Tipu Sultan Mosque in Dharmatala, Calcutta in 1842. He served as a Government pensioner for many years and was bestowed with the prestigious title of Knight Commander of the Star of India. In 1854, he visited England.

Ghulam Muhammad died in August 1872, at Tollygunge, near Calcutta.

Also Read: Prince Ghulam Muhammad and Colonel Stapleton Cotton

9. Ghulam Ahmad

Prince Ahmed (artist not known)

The remaining three Princes were Surur-ud-din or Sarwar-ud-din, Jami-ud-din and Munir-ud-din.

According to Major Allan, Tipu had 13 sons. They were: Fateh Hyder (26 yrs), Abdul Khaliq (21), Muhi-ud-din (15 1/2), Muiz-ud-din (15 4 months), Yasin (12), Subhan (11), Shukr-ullah (9), Surur-ud-din (6), Jami-ud-din (5), Munir-ud-din (2 1/2), Ghulam Muhammad (2), Ghulam Ahmad (1 3/4) and Sandy (8 months). 


Valentia's voyages and travels
Images are from Victoria Memorial Hall & Rashtrapati Bhavan