The first drop of rain stayed momentarily on her eyelids, dropped on her lips, shattered on her hard breasts and trickled down her triple fold and after a long time disapperaed in her navel

Kalidasan , the greatest poet of all time is thought to have lived at Ujjain in central India in around AD 400. He is regarded as the greatest figure in classical literature. There is little known about his life except that he was retained by the court of the Gupta dynasty. Kalidasa created his courtly dramas from a blend sacred myth and historical fantasy. His three surviving plays are Sakuntala ,Vikramorvasi, and Malavikagnimitra. These court dramas in verse (nataka) relate fanciful or mythological tales of profound romantic love intensified and matured by adversity. Sakuntala, which is generally considered his masterpiece, tells of a maiden, Sakuntala, whom King Dushyanta marries. The king is bewitched so that he forgets his bride until a ring he gave her is discovered in the body of a fish. In Kalidasa's two epics, Raghuvansa and Kumarasambhava, delicate descriptions of nature are mingled with battle scenes. The other poems of Kalidasa are shorter and almost purely lyrical. Meghaduta [cloud messenger] is a description of the regions of India crossed by a cloud traveling between a tree spirit and his wife. Ritusamhara describes the course of pastoral love through the six seasons into which Indians divided the year.

His play The Recognition of Sakuntala and poem 'The Cloud Messenger' were much admired by Goethe and others in the 18th century, and helped stimulate a lively interest in Sanskrit literature in the West.

Plays and Poems
Characteristics of Kalidasan's work

Last Updated: December 11, 1998