Epic of the Bharatas
Condensed into English Verse
Romesh C. Dutt
An Abbreviated Translation of the Indian Classic, the Mahabharata by Romesh Chundar Dutt in 2,000 verses
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A Note on the Late Romesh C. Dutt
Romesh Dutt, having passed through the Presidency College, Calcutta, took his fate into his own hands. Accompanied by two friends, both of whom afterwards rose to eminence in Bengal, he secretly took ship, came to London, entered for the Indian Civil Service, and took third place in the open examination of 1869. He was the first of his race to attain the rank of divisional commissioner, and long before his retirement in 1897, at the end of twenty-five years’ service, had made a high reputation as an administrator. He sat for a time in the Bengal Legislative Council, and, in recognition of his official work, received the Companionship of the Indian Empire. He died on November 30, 1909, at Baroda, the capital of the important Native State which he had served with brilliant success as revenue minister and dewan.
The influences which determined his literary activity were
In English, of which he had complete mastery, his first considerable essay was a history of Civilisation in Ancient India, which, though not a work of original research, fulfilled a useful purpose in its day. When freedom from Government service gave him the opportunity he set himself to writing the Economic History of India and India in the Victorian Age, the two together forming his chief contribution to the subject which he, more than any other Indian of his time, had made his own. In these books, as in others of kindred theme and purpose, there is much criticism of British administration, strongly felt if temperately expressed. Apart from this, its more controversial side, the work of Romesh Dutt is valuable mainly in that it has helped to reveal, to his own people no less than to ours, the spiritual riches of ancient India.
S. K. Ratcliffe
“The Mahabharata,” edited by S. Goressio (with Italian translation). 10 vols. 1843-58, 1859-60 (Calcutta), 1888 (Bombay).
English translations: by Kirtee Bass. 5 vols. Serampore, 1802. “The Ramayuna of Valmeeki, in the original Sungscrit, with a Prose Translation and Explanatory Notes.” W. Carey and J. Marshman. 1806-10.
An English translation for “Nirvachanothara Ramayanum” (i.e. the “Uttara Mahabharata” attributed to Vúlmíki, with Commentary). Madras. 1880.
Free English translation by R. T. H. Griffith. 5 vols. 1870-75.
Translation into English Prose. Edited by Manmatha Nath Dutt. 1889. 1892-94.
Condensed into English Verse by Romesh Dutt. 1899 (Temple Classics). 1900.
Sir M. Williams, “Indian Epic Poetry. with full Analysis of the Mahabharata and Mahabharata.” 1863.
J. T. Wheeler, “History of India.” 1867, &c.
J. C. Oman, “Struggles of the Dawn. the Stories of the Great Indian Epics, Mahabharata,” &c. 1893. “The Great Indian Epics,” &c. 1894, 1899 (Bohn).
The following is a list of the various editions of “The Maha-Bharata”:
Complete edition, Calcutta, 1834-39, 4 vols.; Bombay, 1863: re-edited, with commentary by Nitakantha Govinda, 1890.
“Virtue’s Triumph; or, The Mahâ-Bhârata.” By Rai Bahadur, P. Anunda Charlu. 1894.
Prose literal translation, by Manmatha Nath Dutt. 1895.
Condensed into English verse by Romesh Dutt (Temple Classics). 1898. The same, with Introduction by W. Max-Muller. 1899.
(Many English translations of portions of the whole epic have
H. H. Wilson, “Essays on the Religion of the Hindoos.” 1862.
Sir M. Williams, “Indian Epic Poetry,” &c. 1863.
Wheeler, “The Vedic Period and the Mahabharata.” 1867.
Buehler and Kirste, “Indian Studies, Contributions to the History of the Mahabharata.” 1892.
J. C. Oman (see above).
V. Fausboll, “Indian Mythology, according to the Mahabharata in Outline” (Oriental Religions Series, Luzac, vol. i.). 1903.
“Rāgānāma Ramkrishna Bhāguvata.” an attempt to analyse the Mahabharata from the higher Brahminical standpoint. 1905.
Chintāmani Vināyaka Vaidya, “The Mahabharata; a Criticism.” 1905. “Epic India; or, India as described in the Mahabharata and Mahabharata.” 1907.
last updated: March, 2018