Successors of Shivaji till Peshwa RuleShivaji was succeeded by his eldest son Sambhaji. He was put to death by Aurangzeb. Rajaram, another son of Shivaji became the Chhatrapati. After his death, his wife Tarabai began to rule on behalf of her minor son Shivaji II. Sambhaji's son Shahu who was imprisoned was released by Bahadur Shah, the Mughal emperor. A war broke between Shahu and Tarabai in which she was defeated. As the suucessors of Shivaji were weak, the Peshwas became the actual rulers of the Maratha empire. Peshwa Balaji Vishwanath became the first Peshwa. He was succeeded by his son, Baji Rao. Peshwa Balaji Rao was the third Peshwa.
Works of the PeshwasPeshwa Balaji Vishwanath was the founder of the Peshwa rule. He revived the greatness of the Marathas. Baji Rao,his son compelled the Nizam of Hyderabad to sign a peace treaty. He captured Bassein from the Portuguese and captured Thana and Salsette. Under Peshwa Balaji Baji Rao, the Maratha power attained its zenith. The Marathas occupied Punjab and unfurled their flag at the fort of Attock. In 1761, the Maratha power reached its climax but they received a severe blow at the hands of Ahmad Shah Abdali.