Maharaj or Maharaja (also spelled maharajah) is a Sanskrit for "great king" or "high king", "Ruler", Prince or Emperor. Due to Sanskrit's major influence on the vocabulary of most languages in India, the term 'maharaja' is common to many modern languages, such as Punjabi, Bengali, Hindi, Gujrati, etc. The female equivalent title Maharani (or Maharanee) denotes either the wife of a Mahārāja or, in states where that was customary, a woman ruling in her own right.
The widow of a maharajah is known as a Rajmata. The term Maharaj denotes separate noble and religious offices, although the fact that in Hindi the suffix 'a' in Maharaja is silent makes the two titles near homophones.
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