Tuesday, November 27, 2001

Reference Book. Bahadur. Mahanataka.

Comments: You can read a summary of the play here, which includes this legend about the finding of the work: "The Mahanataka is said to be originally the work of Hanuman, who engraved or wrote it on the rocks. Valmiki saw it, and anticipated the greater sweetness of its style would throw his Ramayana into the shade. When he complained to the monkey, the latter had so little of the author about him, that he told the bard to cast the verses into the sea. Valmiki obeyed the injunction, and the Mahanataka remained concealed for ages under the waves."

Title: Mahanataka: A Dramatic History of King Rama
Translator: Kalikrishna Bahadur
Year: 1840

Online Sources (FREE):
Hathi Trust
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Act 1: As this act begins, Visvamitra comes to the court of King Dasaratha, and he takes Rama and Lakshmana away with him; the act ends with Rama's marriage to Sita.

Act 2: As this act begins, Parasurama confronts Rama about the breaking of Shiva's bow, and by the end of the act, Rama has returned to Ayodhya with his new bride.

Act 3: As this act begins, Dasaratha has resolved to make Rama king after him. By the end of the act, Rama has gone into exile with Sita and Lakshmana, and Ravana has abducted Sita from their forest hut.

Act 4: As this act begins, Rama laments Sita's disappearance. By the end of the act, Rama become an ally of Sugriva and has slain Sugriva's brother Vali.

Act 5: As this act begins, Rama awaits the end of the rainy season to continue his quest for Sita.  By the end of the act, Hanuman has found Sita in Lanka.

Act 6: As this act begins, Rama awaits Hanuman's return from Lanka. At the end of the act, Mandodari is trying to persuade Ravana to give Sita back to Rama.

Act 7: As this act begins, Mandodari realizes that Ravana will not listen to her. At the end of this act, Angada has gone to Ravana as Rama's envoy.

Act 8: As this act begins, Angada reports back to Rama about Ravana's determination to go to war. The war rages, Rama defeats Ravana, and Sita proves her innocence in the fire.

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