If you’ve ever heard the name Prithvi Narayan Shah, it’s likely because he is renowned as one of the greatest unifiers in Nepalese history. Born in 1723, Prithvi Narayan Shah began his rule at the young age of 20 and overcame immense obstacles to bring together what had been a divided nation. His legacy endures today in many ways throughout the Kingdom of Nepal. Let’s take a closer look at the life and accomplishments of this celebrated leader.
Early Life and Start of Rule
Prithvi Narayan Shah was born into royalty; his father was King Nara Bhupal Shah and his mother was Queen Kausalyavati Devi. At the time, Nepal was divided into small principalities that were constantly feuding for control with no single ruler reigning over them all. When King Nara Bhupal passed away in 1743, Prithvi Narayana became the crown prince at age 20. He immediately assumed leadership over Gorkha, one of these principalities located near Kathmandu Valley, from which he would launch his mission to unify Nepal.
The drive to unite Nepal came from a place of strength rather than fear or aggression; Prithvi Narayan envisioned a strong kingdom that could not be taken advantage by outsiders who wished to exploit its resources or use it as a buffer against their enemies. With this mission in mind, Prithvi Narayan collected an army made up mostly of loyal subjects from Gorkha but also included citizens from other principalities who wanted change in their country. He then set out on an ambitious campaign to unify all parts of Nepal under one rule while also protecting its borders against foreign invasion.
Prithivi Narayan’s Accomplishments
By 1769, after 26 years on the throne—1759-1775—Prithivi had successfully unified all parts of modern-day Nepal with very few casualties along the way despite facing formidable enemies such as Tibetans and British East India Company forces who had designs on controlling Nepalese lands for themselves. In addition to expanding its boundaries through warfare, Prithivi solidified alliances with neighboring countries such as India via marriage treaties designed to maintain peace between them so they could focus on internal matters instead of fighting each other on the battlefield. Furthermore, he recognized that trade would be essential for creating economic stability within Nepal so he opened up commercial routes between his kingdom and China as well as European nations like France and England which provided much-needed capital investments in exchange for goods produced by local artisans like carpets and woolen cloths.
Prithvi Narayan Shah is remembered today as one of the greatest rulers in Nepalese history due to his ambition and commitment to unifying all parts of modern-day Nepal into a single kingdom while also protecting its borders against foreign invasion, establishing peaceful relationships with neighboring countries via marriage treaties, and opening up commercial routes between his kingdom and other trading partners around the world which allowed for economic growth within Nepalese borders for generations to come. His legacy continues today with monuments being erected around Kathmandu Valley honoring him as well as statues depicting him riding atop a horse placed strategically throughout major cities such as Patan Durbar Square or Basantapur Durbar Square so tourists can pay homage when visiting these sites. It is clear that no matter how much time passes or how many changes occur within this region long after his death in 1775 that Prithvi’s legacy will always remain intact thanks to his visionary leadership skills which helped shape what we now know today as present day Nepal!