The Encyclopedia Americana (1920)/Jayadéva

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Edition of 1920. See also Jayadeva on Wikipedia, and the disclaimer.

JAYADÉVA, or DJAYADÉVA, Hindu poet and dramatist: lived in 1200 or 1300 A.D. The time and details of his life are unknown, but his ‘Gitagovinda,’ the ‘Song of Krishna,’ is the only known example of the religious drama in Sanskrit. The drama is a lyric poem, and is usually given a mystical interpretation. It delineates the love of Krishna, as a cowherd, for Râdhâ, the milkmaid, his faithlessness and subsequent return to her, and is taken as symbolical of the human soul's straying from its true allegiance but returning at length to the God which created it. The work is of great poetic beauty and is remarkable for its melodious and truthful mirroring of passionate emotions. Native editions are those of Vidyasagara (Calcutta 1882); and Telang and Pansikar (Bombay 1899). ‘Gitagovinda’ was edited with a Latin translation by C. Lassen (Bonn 1836). English translations are those of Sir William Jones (London 1799; new ed., Calcutta 1894); and Sir Edwin Arnold, ‘The Indian Song of Songs’ (London 1875).