(Last Updated on : 14-05-2011)
Jayadeva was a contemporary of Kamarnava Deva, King of the Ganga dynasty
. Jayadeva belonged to the reign of Lakshmanasena
in Bengal. He was along with Govardhana, Dhoi, Umapati and dhara considered as one of the five jewels who adorned the court. He was born in an Utkali Brahmin family in Kenduli Sasan in Prachi Valley in the Khordha District of Orissa. Jayadeva's parents were Bhojdeva and Vamadevi. The poet had received his lessons in Sanskrit poetry from a place called Kumarapataka near Konark Orissa
. Jayadeva's wife was Padmavati who was an accomplished temple dancer. She became Devadasi in fulfilment of a vow made by her father before Lord Jagannath
Jayadeva also went on to become a teaching faculty in the school of Kumarapataka. The earliest reference of this saintly poet is found in "Prithviraj Raso" written in old Hindi by Chand Bardai who is generally assigned to the 13th century.
Some authorities fix the period of the composition of this all time classic some where within 1150-1170 A.D. Geeta Gobinda is popular all over India. In Orissa the collection of palm leaf manuscripts of Geeta Gobinda prove that Geeta Gobinda was only next in popularity to the Oriya Bhagavata of Jagannath Das. Geeta Gobinda depicts the love of Radha
and Lord Krishna
The Tribhangi pose of Lord Krishna playing the flute had gained popularity due to Jayadeva. He had also institutionalised the system of Devadasis
in the temples of Orissa and also helped to spread the message of Vaishnavism
in a clearer manner.
Style of Jayadeva
Jayadeva inimitable style was highly lyrical and depiction of the divine love highly romantic, even erotic. It set a new style in Bhakti
literature which was imitated all over India by Sanskrit as well as regional poets. His Saptapadi compositions besides being highly poetical were also highly musical. He used the following Raagas in his compositions: Raalava Gauda, Gujjari, Vasant, Ramkei, Gundkeri, Karnat, Desakshya, Des biradi, Malav, Bhairavi, Baradi and Bibhas. In some editions of Geeta Gobinda Mangala Gujjari in place of Gujjari and Kedar instead of Karnat are mentioned. He has also used eight Talas, namely, Yati, Rupak, Ektali, Nihsara and Astatali. The Raagas and Talas mentioned by Jayadeva are still prevalent in Orissa.
The fame of the author is established by the fact that for centuries there was a festival held each year at his birthplace in which songs of his poem were sung. The manner in which the songs have been recited displays the poet's skill effectively. In this manner the monotony of form is avoided. The songs express the feelings of the personnel of the poem, Krishna and his consort Radha. There is no stereotyped form; the recitative and the song, narrative, description and speeches are interwoven skill.
The religion of Jayadeva was the enthusiastic Lord Krishna worship. His work is deeply touched with religious spirit. His work surpasses in its completeness of effect. It has the perfection of the minute word-pictures with the beauty which arises from enormity and arrangement. The compounds are moderately long but not obscure. The songs are such that if once explained it can be easily understood and learned.