Friday, May 8, 2020

Rabindranath Tagore

Respectful tribute to India’s greatest polymath and Nobel Prize Laureate Rabindranath Tagore on his birth anniversary.

Rabindranath Tagore 159th Birth Anniversary: Date, significance ...

• Rabindranath Tagore Jayanti or Rabindra Jayanti is a cultural celebration to mark the birth anniversary of the luminary, Nobel Peace Prize laureate Rabindranath Tagore on his birth anniversary. 
• Celebrated annually and globally in May, Rabindranath Tagore Jayanti falls on the 25th day of the Bengali month of Boishakh. 
• He was born on the day in the year 1268, according to the Bengali calendar and 1861 AD, as per the Gregorian calendar. He was also referred to as ‘Gurudev’, ‘Kabiguru’, and ‘Biswakabi’.

His work:
• At the age of 11, he accompanied his father on a tour across India. During the journey, he read the works of famous writers including classical Sanskrit poet Kalidasa. 
• Upon returning, he composed a long poem in the Maithili style. 
• He began studying the works of Shakespeare in his college years and in 1880 when he returned to Bengal without a degree, he was inspired to produce his own literary works by fusing the elements of Bengali and European traditions. 
• In 1882, one of his most acclaimed poems titled Nirjharer Swapnabhanga was published.
• While Gitanjali is considered his tour de force, he was also a prolific songwriter who composed 2,230 songs categorised as Rabindra Sangeet. 
• He is also credited with writing several volumes of short stories, and novels including works such as Gora, Ghare-Baire and Yogayog.
• In the year 2011, to mark and honour Gurudev’s 150th birth anniversary, the Government of India had issued five rupee coins. 

Some facts:
• Gurudev became the first non-European to be awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1913. He was bestowed with this coveted honour after the publication of his acclaimed collection of poems, Geetanjali.
• Rabindranath Tagore is the only known person to have written the national anthems for two different countries - Jana Gana Mana, the national anthem for India; and Amar Sonar Bangla, the national anthem for Bangladesh.
• According to some historians, however, the Sri Lankan national anthem too was based on a Bengali song originally written by Tagore in 1938. It was translated into Sinhalese and adopted as the national anthem in 1951.
• It was him who conferred the title of ‘Mahatma’ on MK Gandhi in 1915. Although Tagore is said to have admired Gandhi, he differed with him on certain issues.
• Rabindranath Tagore and Albert Einstein met four times between 1930 and 1931 and mutually revered each other for each other’s contributions.
• According to the Bengali calendar, Tagore was born on the 25th day in the month of Boishakh in 1268. Subsequently, West Bengal celebrates Tagore’s birthday as per the Bengali calendar, which overlaps on either May 8 or May 9 on the Gregorian calendar. In other states, Rabindranath Tagore Jayanti is observed as per the Gregorian calendar on May 7 annually.

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