Probably the first authoritative study of one of the most colourful characters in Indian history Farzana tells the rags-to-riches story of one of the most colourful characters in Indian history. In a life spanning the chaotic years between the collapse of the Mughal empire and advent of the British this child of the streets beguiled her way to command of a private army confidante of the emperor and ruler of the most progressive principality in northern India. Her troops often held the balance of power. Her hospitality was the talk of the age. And converting to Christianity her piety found her corresponding with the Pope and building a church that may still be the largest basilica in the country.