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Chandidas

First Humanist Poet in Bengal


Chandidas was a 14th century poet. Four poets were known by the name Chandidas: Baru Chandidas, Dwija Chandidas, Dina Chandidas and Chandidas. Among them Baru Chandidas is the only one who has been properly identified.

Baru Chandidas was born as the son of a Varendra Brahmin, Durgadas Bagchi, in the village of Nanur in Birbhum District, West Bengal. Chandidas served as a priest in the temple of goddess Bashuli (Bishalakshi). He was excommunicated for loving a washerwoman named Rami. The poems attributed to Chandidas have remained popular throughout the centuries. Srikrishnakirtan is the main work of Chandidas. The manuscript of the work was discovered by Basantaranjan Vidvadvallabh at Bankura who published it in 1916. ‘The supreme truth is man, there is nothing more important than he is’ - this was the belief of Chandidas, the first humanist poet in Bangla. It is believed that he was born in 1339 and died in 1399.

In memory of the poet, a school and a hospital have been established in Nanur village. Visitors to the village pay homage to Chandidas.



Updated on 7th June, 2005
District: Birbhum

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