Meaning of the words in early English In Latin "Gubernare" is the word for "Governor" — meaning to Direct and Guide. The word "Praesidere" literally means "To be Seated in the Front" — to "Preside over" with "Praesidium" meaning "Defense". In English the word "President" became the name for the head of an endowed college or community, starting in the 1450s. Early British colonies in the US, with their investment coming from England, then had an elected "President" starting with John Smith in Virginia in 1608. The word "Praesidere" contrasted with the old French word "Residere: Sit (back) down" Settle down and "Resident", and in the late 1300s in middle English it had the same meaning. History of England in India Surat and Bombay, Madras and Bengal 1612 Surat's presidency was established with the founding of an East India Company factory in the western Indian port city of Surat in 1612. At its height, its presidency included all factories on the west coast of India, including Ahmadabad, Balasore (1655-84), Bombay (1665-87) and Hughly (1655-84). From 1655 to 1684, the President of the Surat factory also exercised his authority over Madras (Chennai) on the east coast, first settled in 1640. In 1684, Elihu Yale became the first
President of Madras. 1668 On 27 March a Royal Charter was issued transferring Bombay (Mumbai), 280 kilometres south, from Charles II to the British East India Company for an annual rent of £10. On 21 September the appointed Commissioners received their charge for the island, and the island was handed over to the Company on 23 September. Upon the transfer, Bombay was made subordinate to the Company's settlement in Surat with the Governors of Bombaybeing the Presidents of Surat Council. Bombay, during these early years, was administered by a Deputy Governor. In 1687, the Company transferred its main holdings from Surat to Bombay, placing Bombay at the head of all the Company's establishments in India. However, the onset of plague and cholera delayed implementation, and the headquarters was not actually moved to Bombay until 1708. During the Governorships of John Gayer, Nicholas Waite, and William Aislabie (1694–1715), the Bombay Governors also held the title of "General", as well as their main title of "President", with Governor of Bombay being a supplementary title and role. In the north east was Bengal, having its first governor appointed in 1680 and becoming a presidency in 1690. The three principal trading administrations including factories and forts, were now 1. The Bombay Presidency 2. The Madras Presidency (or the Presidency of Fort St. George) 3. The Bengal Presidency (or the Presidency of Fort William) with each one administered by a Governor. In 1757 the Bengal Army was formed as a locally recruited unit of Bengal sepoys in the form of the "Lal Paltan" battalion, following the death of British soldiers in the "Black Hole of Calcutta" massacre. Under British Major-General Robert Clive it defeated the Nawab of Bengal at the Battle of Plassey in 23 June 1757, followed by the Battle of Buxar in 22 October 1764. In 1773 Warren Hastings became first Governor-General of Bengal, within a five-man Supreme Council of Bengal. After 1857 and the Indian Rebellion, the Company rule in India ended, with its rule transferred to the British Crown. The presidencies became known as provinces.
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