was an eminent Sanskrit
Sanskrit , is a historical Indo-Aryan language and the primary liturgical language of Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism.Buddhism: besides Pali, see Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Today, it is listed as one of the 22 scheduled languages of India and is an official language of the state of Uttarakhand...
poet, dramatist and critic. He was court poet of the Gurjara Pratiharas.
He wrote Kavyamimamsa
between 880 and 920 CE. The work is essentially a practical guide for poets that explains the elements and composition of a good poem. The fame of Rajashekhara rests firmly on his play Karpuramanjari
, written in Sauraseni
A Dramatic Prakrit, Shauraseni was the chief language used in drama in northern medieval India. Most of the material in this language originates from the 3rd to 10th centuries AD, though it was probably a spoken colloquial around the 5th century BC...
Prakrit is the name for a group of Middle Indic, Indo-Aryan languages, derived from Old Indic dialects. The word itself has a flexible definition, being defined sometimes as, "original, natural, artless, normal, ordinary, usual", or "vernacular", in contrast to the literary and religious...
. Rajashekhara wrote the play to please his wife, Avantisundari, a woman of taste and accomplishment. He is perhaps the only ancient Indian poet to acknowledge a woman for her contributions to his literary career.
In his Bālarāmāyaṇa
, Rajashekhara referred himself by his family name Yāyāvara
. In Bālarāmāyaṇa
, he mentioned that his great grandfather Akalajalada belonged to Maharashtra
Maharashtra is a state located in India. It is the second most populous after Uttar Pradesh and third largest state by area in India...
. In the same work, he described his father Durduka as a Mahamantrin
(minister) without providing any details. He mentioned in his works that his wife Avantisundari belonged to the Cahamana (Chauhan
Chauhan, Chouhan or Chohan , , - is a clan who ruled parts of northern India in the Middle Ages. The clan is most famous for Rajput King Maharaja Prithviraj Chauhan...
) family. In his works, he described himself as the teacher of the Gurjara-Pratihara king Mahendrapala I
Mahendrapala I was a ruler of the Gurjara-Pratihara dynasty, the son of Mihir Bhoja I and queen Candra-Bhatta-Rika-Devi. He was also mentioned on various inscriptions in Kathiawar, Punjab and Madhya Pradesh by names Mahindrapala, Mahendrayudha, Mahisapaladeva, and also Nirbhayaraja and...
The works attributed to poet Rajshekhara include: