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What triggered the Great Revolt of 1857?

The Great Revolt of 1857 was triggered by the introduction of the new Enfield rifle cartridges.

The Great Revolt of 1857, also known as the Indian Rebellion of 1857, was a significant event in Indian history. The immediate trigger was the introduction of the new Enfield rifle cartridges, which were rumoured to be greased with pig and cow fat. This was offensive to both Muslim and Hindu sepoys (Indian soldiers in the British army) as it violated their religious beliefs. Muslims consider pigs unclean, while Hindus regard cows as sacred. The requirement to bite the cartridges to release the powder was seen as a direct attempt to force them to convert to Christianity.

However, the revolt was not just a spontaneous reaction to the cartridges. It was the culmination of growing discontent with British rule. The British East India Company's policies had led to widespread economic hardship. High taxes, the annexation of princely states under the Doctrine of Lapse, and the displacement of local artisans and farmers due to the influx of cheap British goods had created a sense of resentment among the Indian populace.

The social and religious policies of the British also contributed to the unrest. The British had introduced Western education and legal systems, which were seen as an attempt to undermine traditional Indian society. Moreover, the aggressive Christian missionary activity was viewed with suspicion and fear. The British were perceived as trying to destroy the Indian way of life and impose their own culture and religion.

The revolt was a culmination of these various factors. The introduction of the Enfield rifle cartridges was the final straw that ignited the simmering discontent into a full-blown rebellion. The revolt was a violent and bloody affair, with atrocities committed on both sides. It marked a significant turning point in Indian history, leading to the end of the East India Company's rule and the beginning of direct British rule under the British Crown.

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