Confessions of a Thug is an English novel written by Philip Meadows Taylor in 1839 based on the Thuggee cult in British India.This book is a tale of crime and retribution. Set in 1832 in India, the story lays bare the practices of the Thugs, or deceivers as they were called, who lived in boats and used to murder those passengers whom they were able to entice into their company in their voyages up and down the rivers.
Confessions of a Thug went on to become a best seller in 19th-century Britain. The book also became one of Queen Victoria's favourite novels. The story of the Thuggee cult was popularized by Confessions of a Thug, leading to the Hindi word "thug" entering the English language.
The term thug is now synonymous, in English, with any type of criminal or violent lowlife. This is in large part due to Englishman Philip M. Taylor's tale of crime and murder based on his knowledge of the Thuggee cult in India. To modern ears the narrative at times feels dated and xenophobic, but Taylor did have a genuine interest in India and extensive knowledge of the culture, here chronicling what was a real and dangerous phenomenon. The tale itself is, of course, entertaining in its own right, told under the guise of a true confession. Sanjiv Jhaveri gives a gripping performance accenting the complacence of its narrator's unapologetic recollections his of life of ritualistic crimes among organized, devoted killers.
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