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The Loom of Time: A Selection of His Plays and Poems

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3.78  ·  Rating Details ·  103 Ratings  ·  10 Reviews
Kalidasa was the most accomplished poet and playwright in classical Sanskrit literature. This collection features his best-known work: the great poem Meghadutam (The Cloud Messenger), a haunting depiction of longing and separation; the play Sakuntala, which describes the troubled love between a Lady of Nature and King Duhsanta; and the poem Rtusamharam (The Gathering of th ...more
Paperback, 352 pages
Published August 31st 2006 by Penguin Classics (first published 1991)
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kaśyap
Nov 11, 2014 kaśyap rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry
This is a translation of three of Kālidāsa’s works. Kālidāsa is regarded as the greatest poet and playwright in Sanskrit literature. Three of his works translated here are Ṛtusaṃhāram, Meghadūtam and Abhijñānaśākuntalam. None of his works have come to us in their original form. Rather what we have are a number of recensions commentaries of his works. This happens commonly in Sanskrit literature. The translator here apparently used the Bengal recensions.
Sanskrit is a highly inflected language and
...more
Barnaby Thieme
Feb 29, 2012 Barnaby Thieme rated it it was amazing
The great Indian poet and dramatist Kālidāsa was a genius on the order of Goethe and Shakespeare. We know little about him, other than that he wrote magnificent verse during the Golden Age of Indian culture, a time that saw the production of the Mahabharata and Bhagavad Gītā, and the Hindu Purāṇas. Kālidāsa drew from this extravagant tradition to produce dazzling and imaginative poems and plays alive with the vitality of Hindu religious insight.

His work has been rendered into English by Chandra
...more
Ananya
Aug 31, 2015 Ananya rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Fuck no
PTS Books Club
Feb 20, 2011 PTS Books Club rated it it was amazing
Kālidāsa ("servant of Kali") was a renowned Classical Sanskrit writer, widely regarded as the greatest poet and dramatist in the Sanskrit language. His floruit cannot be dated with precision, but most likely falls within the Gupta period, probably in the 4th or 5th or 6th century. The place bestowed to the English poet Shakespeare is considered akin to that held by Kālidāsa in Sanskrit literature. His plays and poetry are primarily based on Hindu Puranas and philosophy.


Nothing apart from his wor
...more
James Violand
Feb 22, 2016 James Violand rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Indian history buffs
Shelves: own
It is difficult to assess this work.
In Rtusamharam [The Gathering of Seasons] each of the six cantos (one for each season in the Subcontinent) brilliantly evokes in the modern reader a daily routine of realistic depth in a natural world that he no longer experiences - much to his loss.
The Meghadutam [The Cloud Messenger] depicts the longing of an exiled husband for his wife. He sends this poem by cloud to his distant lover. The cloud becomes a character, hugging mountain peaks and buoyed up for
...more
Thomas
Jan 16, 2009 Thomas rated it really liked it
Shelves: eastern-classics
The first translation of Kalidasa that I found sounded like Dr. Suess wrote it, so I was glad to find Chandra Rajan's accessible and fluid version (which at times sounds much more like Shakespeare than Hop on Pop. Apologies to Dr. Suess, but this is a good thing.) Rajan's translation is probably the closest English readers can expect to get to the Sanskrit. The introduction is lengthy, but worth the time, and following the poems (Rtusamharam and Meghatutam) and Kalidasa's "masterpiece," The Reco ...more
Kadbury
Aug 18, 2015 Kadbury added it
Shelves: course
Read sakuntala in this collection.

I've known this play, I've read the Amar Chitra Katha and I've seen parts of the serial that used to come on TV. The serial is closer to this play than I expected.

Full of erotic imagery and drama. This play is like an Ekta Kapoor serial. (Seems as if her storytelling skills are part of our cultural history).
Gayatri Kavishwar
Jun 29, 2014 Gayatri Kavishwar rated it really liked it
What a lovely book.. For one of the few times, I thoroughly enjoyed a translation.. Maybe because of the subject being so powerful and the splendid nature of Kalidasa's writing.. A must read for someone who cannot read Sanskrit but still wants to read Kalidasa's work..
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May 06, 2011 Rajendra Dave rated it really liked it
I wish I could read the original Sanskrit version
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Kālidāsa (Devanāgarī: कालिदास "servant of Kali") was a renowned Classical Sanskrit writer, widely regarded as the greatest poet and dramatist in the Sanskrit language.

Nothing apart from his works is known with certainty about the life of Kālidāsa, such as where he lived or the dates of his birth and death. According to legend, he was known for his beauty, which brought him to the attention of Prin
...more
More about Kālidāsa...

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“KING (to Sakuntala): O fair lady!
The tear drop that once stood
trembling on your lower lip
-and I watched uncaring, lost in delusion-
while it still clings to your gently-curving lashes,
I shall now wipe away, my beloved,
to free myself of remorse.”
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