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Harivilasakavya – Epic Poem By Lolambaraja – 14th Century CE

Harivilasakavya is an epic poem by Lolambaraja of the 14th century CE. Certain biographical acts are made known by the author himself in this work. He was the son of Divakara Suri and was patronized by King Bhoja. Harihara I, founder of Vijayanagara empire, was not a contemporary of King Bhoja of Dhara; hence scholars opine that Lolambaraja should have been in the court of Harihara I of the 14th century CE and King Bhoja referred to by lolambaraja should be some other king extolled as Bhoja.

Nothing is known about the personal life of the poet. There is a legend that Lolambaraja was brought up by his elder brother and was little interested in studies. Once he was insulted harshly by the wife of his brother. Dejected, Lolambaraja made a vow to learn all the vidyas and prayed to Goddess Mahishasuramardini of Saptasringagiri wand was blessed by Her.

Lolambaraja has also written an Ayurvedic text, Vaidya Jivana in 100 verses, explaining various treatments and medicines for ailments.

Harivilas Kavya, in five cantos and 298 verses, has to its theme the story of Sri Krishna Bhagavan in Gokul till the death of Kamsa. The first canto (34 verses) describes the feats of infant Sri Krishna in killing Putana, Saka, Arisha and others; his childish pranks in Gokul; the complaints of the gopis and the efforts made by Yashoda to control little Sri Krishna.

Canto II contains the rasakrida in 36 verses. Canto III (19 verses) describes the joyful time spent by Sri Krishna Bhagavan and Balarama with the cowherd boys along Govardhana Hill. The six seasons are described in an impressive manner with special importance to vasanta (spring) and varsha (rain).

The fourth canto (72 verses) narrates the arrival of Akrura at Gokul; Yashoda fears at the summons and Nanda’s consolations; Krishna is described as Paramatman; Akrura’s return journey with Krishna and Balarama; verses 59-72 in praise of Krishna by Akrura is a wonderful stuti.

The fifth canto (87 verses) describes the arrival of Sri Krishna at Mathura; killing of Kamsa, release of the imprisoned king Ugrasena and the parents of Sri Krishna; message to the gopis delivered by Uddhava; and ends with the Sudama episode.

Harivilasakavya satisfies the definition of a mahakavya (epic) by providing a beautiful description of cities, mountains, and seasons in well-knit cantos woven with alankaras (figures of speech) and suitable meters. The poem is generally lucid and charming style, at times mixed with terse compounds suiting the context. Lombaraja is appreciated for his brevity of description and expression.

Harivilasakavya also has a commentary written by Kamalakara, son of Chaturbhuja.

Source - 
Encyclopedia of Hinduism Volume IV page 450 IHRF - 2011
The Hisharivilasakavya-epic-poem-bytory of Classical Sanskrit Literature (1970) M Krishnamachariar - Motilal Banarsidass, New Delhi




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