Green’s Dictionary of Slang

Benighted, the n.

(Anglo-Ind.) a resident of the Madras Presidency, but note cite 1884.

[Ind]E. Roberts in Asiatic Jrnl & Mthly Register Sept.-Dec. 14: Bengal, too proudly triumphing in her greatness, has now to bear the mortifications to which she delighted to subject Bombay, a place contemptuously designated as ‘a fishing village,’ while its inhabitants, in consequence of their isolated situation, were called ‘the Benighted’.
[UK]Allen’s Indian Mail 29 June 406/2: Now came the Madras civilians with a fearful grievance, that all the loaves and fishes of the north are gobbled by the Qui Hies – the troubled waters of the five rivers afford nothing to the benighted. The poor ducks again are once more left to suffer in silence.
[Ind]J. Braidwood Late Rev. John Anderson 32: Few of the residents of the Benighted (a name for Madras) can say that they did not know him.
Indian Year-book for 1862 173: The ‘Benighted’ display considerable literary activity, so far as English books are concerned.
[Ind]Civil & Milit. Gaz. (Lahore) 23 June 2/1: Judged by this standard, the North-West Provinces and Oudh must undoubtedly accept the invidious title of ‘the benighted’.
[Ind]Yule & Burnell Hobson-Jobson 65/1: Benighted, The, adj. An epithet applied by the denizens of the other Presidencies, a facetious disparagement to Madras.
[Ind]G.K. Betham Lolapur Wk 284: Madrasis are called ‘benighted ones’; while people hailing from Bombay rejoice in the appellation of ‘Bombay Ducks’.
[Ind]H. Hervey European in India III 206: Poor old Calcutta is out of it; young Delhi is still in embryo; Madras, besides being ‘one-horse,’ is the ‘benighted’ .

In phrases

Benighted Presidency, the (n.) (also Benighted Province, the)

(Anglo-Ind.) the Madras Presidency.

[[Ind]Alexander’s East India and Colonial Mag. Feb. 162: Whatever indignation and disgust may have been excited elsewhere, the exposure of the disgraceful support which the Madras Government has systematically afforded to Idolatry, no reformation has yet been brought about at that benighted Presidency, where the fears of men in authority are practised on to obtain their connivance and participation in Mahomedan orgies and the worship of images].
[Ind]C. Campbell Rough Recollections I 129: For more than two years I have not seen a rose! The ‘gardens of Gul’ are certainly not extant in this our cruelly-styled ‘Benighted Presidency’.
[UK]C.W. Dilke Greater Britain 161: Spending but a single day in Madras [...] I passed on to Calcutta with a pleasant remembrance of the air of prosperity that hangs about the chief city of what is still called by Bengal civilians ‘The Benighted Presidency’.
[Ind]R.F. Burton Sind Revisited I 68: [A]nd lastly, ‘Mulls,’ or Madrassís from the Benighted Presidency, because they lived upon water and mulligatawny, or they made a ‘mull’ of everything they attempted.
[Ind]Times of India 20 Dec. 2/4: The Duke of Buckingham having seen his successor installed as Governor of the senior — we may not now say benighted — Presidency, leaves India to-day.
[Ind]Civil & Milit. Gaz. (Lahore) 7 Mar. 2/4: We yesterday noticed the lead which the ‘Benighted Province‘ is taking of the rest of India in the matter of the proposed School of Music.
[Ind]G.K. Betham Lolapur Wk 284: Madras is usually spoken of as the benighted Presidency, being supposed to be more backward than either Bengal or Bombay.
[Ind] B.M. Croker Cat’s-Paw 311: ‘There you go sneering at the poor old benighted Presidency. The enlightened Presidency, I call it, and at least the Indian part of India.’.
[Ind]Civil & Milit. Gaz. (Lahore) 1 Jan. 4/4: Madras may be scoffed at by up-country men as the Benighted Province.
[Ind]Civil & Milit. Gaz. (Lahore) 17 Mar. 6/2: [F]rom the ‘Benighted Presidency’ to the ‘premier city of India’.
[Ind]K. Chunder Sen (con. late 19C) Book of Pilgrimages 68: Keshub was impressed all the more by the simplicity and natural earnestness of what is called the ‘Benighted Presidency’.