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Jayadev

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Jayadev (Poet)

Mention of Jayadev occurs in Bhavishya Puraan, 3/23 also besides the history of Hindi literature. He was a fine poet of 12th century. His most famous book is "Geet Govind" which has been translated into many languages. Its first English translation was published by Sir William Jones in 1792. It is considered the finest example of Sanskrit poetry. It is about the relationship of Krishn and Gopee, and in particular one Gopee named Raadhaa.

According to Wikipedia, he lived in Orissa, India, in c 1200 AD. He was born in Kendulee Saasan, (formerly Kendul Bilva) in the Praachee Valley. He was the son of Bhojdev and Ramaa Devee. At the time of Jaya Dev's birth, Orissa was under the rule of Eastern Ganga dynasty king Chodaganga Dev. This dynasty was founded by King Anant-Varman Chodaganga Dev (10781147), grandson of the Chol king Veer Raajendra Chol and nephew of emperor Kulothung Chol I. It was during the reign of this monarch and his son and successor, Raaghav, that Jayadev composed his Sanskrit epics. 

He was married to Padmaavatee who was a dancer in the Jagannaath Puree Temple. It is believed that Padmaavatee's father brought her to offer to God, but the God refused to accept her saying that Jayadev is my form only so you marry her to him only. Then he married her to Jayadev. Another belief is that Padmaavatee was already a dancer and his poetry made her dance on his tune and beat.

He had taught in a school in Koormapatak also. Then he was a poet in the court of Lakshman Sen of Bangaal. The earliest mention of Jayadev, outside of Orissa, is by Chandravardaaee - the court poet of Prithvee Raaj Chauhaan. Krishn's Tri-Bhangee posture playing flute has also been popular through him too. Two hymns composed by Jayadev have been found their way in Guru Granth Saahib too - the holy book of Sikh religion.

Surprisingly the other two books, mentioned in Bhavishya Puraan, such as "Vedaang Nirukt", and upliftment in "Paanini Shaastra" are not mentioned anywhere while giving his biography or his list of works.

Geet Govind
Geet Govind poem is divided in 12 chapters and each chapter is further divided into 24 divisions called Prabandh. The Prabandh contain couplets are grouped into eights, called Ashtapadee. Chapters 1, 2, 4, 5, and 12 contain two Ashtapadee each; and chapters 3, 6, 8, 9, and 10 contain only one Ashtapadee each. Thus there are 24 Ashtapadee in each chapter. More than hundred commentaries have been written in Sanskrit and about 50 commentaries are written in Indian regional languages. Some are in foreign languages also. Its first English translation was published by Sir William Jones in 1792. It is considered the finest example of Sanskrit poetry. It is about the relationship of Krishn and Gopee, and in particular one Gopee named Raadhaa. It is said about Raadhaa that Raadhaa name does not appear anywhere, neither in Bhaagvat Puraan, nor in Vishnu Puraan, nor in Mahaabhaarat's Appendix Harivansh which are the main sources of Krishn's life. It is only Jayadev's "Geet Govind" which made Raadhaa name famous."

His another work is "Dash Kritikrite" which made God's 10 incarnations more popular.

Two hymns composed by Jaya Dev have been incorporated in the Guru Granth Saahib also, the holy book of the Sikh religion, although it is not clear how these medieval Oriya hymns found their way to the Sikh religion.

Since this was specifically written for dance purpose during the night worship of Jagannaath Jee, the composition is so deftly made as to be sung to the beat's of a dancer's foot movements. This poem became so popular that within a year it spread all around India and was adapted to dance, music, painting and temple worship.

 

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Created by Sushma Gupta on 3/15/06
Contact:  sushmajee@yahoo.com
Updated on 10/20/12