The History of Our Nishan Sahib

Ranjit Singh Freed's great historical collection of Nishan Sahib pictures (from the Panthic Network Forums)

Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh !!

I have received a lot of feedback from the pictures I posted of the Battle Standards at Lichfield Cathedral - some negative but mostly positive. Many asked for more pictures especially pictures of old Nishan Sahibs and pictures of the "Symbols" used before the introduction of the modern Khanda symbol. It is not my intention to offend anyone, that is why I carefully avoided the use of 'Nishan Sahib' in the first post and this one and used the more neutral term 'Battle Standard'.

Hope you enjoy the pictures !

Bhul Chuk Maaf
Ranjit Singh 'Freed'

These are guilded panels from Gurdwara Baba Atal Rai Sahib - they date from the mid 19th century

In this first panel you see Guru Gobind Singh Ji with his beloved Singhs - the Nishan Sahibs have on them 2 'Kirpans' a 'Katar' and what could be a 'Chakar' or a shield - it could also be a 'degh' - as it has been argued that the Nishan Sahib is a representation of 'Degh Tegh Fateh'.




a detail





In this panel Guru Gobind Singh Singh is with 5 Singhs - the Nishan Sahib is plain with a border

a detail




In this panel we see the Beloved 'Char Sahibzadas' - here also the Nishan is plain with a border





a detail




(* taken from The Sikhs - T S Randhawa 2000)

In this painting of Guru Gobind Singh Ji , titled as 'Journey to Deccan', dated as circa AD 1770-80 painted in Rajastani style - we have an Akali Nihang holding a Yellow Nishan with a Kirpan Katar and Chakar/Dhal/Degh arrangement with a floral border.



detail




(* taken from Sikh Heritage - Dr Daljeet 2004)

In this portrait of Guru Gobind Singh from the 'Military Manual of Maharaja Ranjit Singh' ,dated around 1822-1830, kept in the Ram Bagh Museum Amritsar - we have a red and gold Nishan with what appears to be a 'Kard' on it.

(* taken from Maharaja Ranjit Singh - Jean-Marie Lafont 2002)

In this portrait of Guru Gobind Singh we see a decorated red, gold and pink Nishan.



 





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detail



(* taken from Warrior Saints - A S Madra P Singh 1999)

This photograph is of the Darshani Deori of Taran Taran Sahib - you can see the Nishan sahib is similar to the woodcut from 1874 AD , it has the kirpan / katar/ chakr pattern - the photograph comes from Khushwant Singh's book published in 1953



(* taken from The Sikhs - Khushwant Singh - 1953)

These next pictures are of Battle Standards

The first is the famous 'Dussehra' painting of Ranjit Singh's Darbar by Schoefft - you can see the Red standard behind Lal Singh






In this lithograph of Solykoff's painting of Sher Singh you can see the Battle Standards of Ranjit Singh - one with 'Karttikeya' on, the other I can't make out.









In this last picture you can see the Sikh Battle Standards from the collection of Lord Dalhousie as they were displayed at the Mansion of Colstoun , East Lothian , Scotland. Family tradition states that they were captured by Lord Gough at the Battle of Gujrat 21 February 1849.


(* taken from Maharaja Ranjit singh - Mohinder Singh Rishi Singh Sondeep Shonkar - 2002)

GurFateh !
Ranjit Singh 'Freed'

 

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