The Glory of Kalidasa
Semeen Ali
MALAVIKAGNIMITRAM; KUMARASAMBHAVAM by Kalidasa Penguin Books, Delhi,, 2015, 240 pp., 399
August 2015, volume 39, No 8

Nirgatasu na va kasya kalidasasya suktisu Pritir madhura—sandrasu manjarisu iva jayate Pleasure blooms in Kalidasa’s poems, Like a full bouquet of fragrant flowers! —Banabhatta’s Harsa-carita
Kalidasa is believed to have been one of the nine gems (navaratna) of the court of king Chandragupta II (who ruled North India from 380–415 CE.) Two of his works that have been recently published in translation by Penguin India are Malvikagnimitram and Kumarasambhavam. Malvikagnimitram, Kalidasa’s earliest production if not his first and considered the ‘least refined work’ as mentioned by its translator Srinivas Reddy.

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