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Major Jean Etienne's Tomb
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Jharsa Gurgaon

A 200 year old memorial tomb in Jharsa village of gurgaon district. Tucked away in a corner of the Mohyal Colony in Sector 40 is a memorial that dates back to the 19th century. Spread over a sizeable portion of a park in the colony, the towering white structure throws light on an important ruler of pre-independence Gurugram. Most residents in the colony are unaware of the historical roots of the structure. They pass by it without a second glance. Recently Indian National Trust For Arts and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) completed the restoration of the structure.

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The tomb of a French major, who served in the army of Begum Samru.Located at the centre of one of the three parks tucked away in Gurgaon’s Mohyal Colony, the structure has a tombstone at the top, which can be accessed by a flight of four stairs that runs along three sides. The inscription on the tombstone reveals it had been erected in memory of Major Jean Etienne, who was born in Bordeaux, France, and died in 1821 aged 75. The wife of Captain Sombre from France, Begum Sombre came to locally be known as Begum Samru since people found it difficult to correctly pronounce her French name, say historians. After her husband’s death, she began her own mercenary army which, during one of its assignments, had camped in Gurgaon, between Badshahpur and Jharsa. Historians believe the tomb of Jean Etienne helped ascertain the location of this camp, when there was no other evidence of it.

Begum Samru was holder of jagir of Badshahpur-Jharsa pargana till she died in 1836. Palace is 200 old in years but it is still in good state. It covered area of 75 acres. Take road before Kumar Cinema Hall on Chandni Chowk road when going from Red Fort direction in Old Delhi. The palace now is place and houses St. Charles College.

“He served HH BEGUM SOMBRE for Thirty Five Years was a Gallant Soldier and an honest Man” the inscription reads, ending with the phrase, “Poor Mortals Fare You Well”


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360 Virtual Tour



Panoromic 360 view of Jean Etienne after restoration.
Panoromic 360 view of Jean Etienne before restoration.