During the eighteenth and early years of the nineteenth century, the red tide of British expansion had covered almost the entire Indian subcontinent, stretching to the borders of Punjab. There the great Sikh ruler Ranjit Singh had developed his military forces to thwart any British advance into his kingdom north of the River Sutlej. Yet on the death of Ranjit Singh, unworthy successors and disparate forces fought over his legacy while the British East India Company seized on the opportunity and prepared for battle. In the winter of 1845, the First Anglo-Sikh War broke out.
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