Chand Bardai

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Chand Barda
Born September 30, 1149
Rajasthan, India
Died 1192
Occupation poet
Spouse Kamla and Gauran

Chand Bardai (चंदबरदाई, (1149-09-30)September 30, 1149 – c. 1200) was a Hindu brahmabhatt (barot) and the court poet of the Indian king Prithviraj III Chauhan, who ruled Ajmer and Delhi from 1165 to 1192. Chand Bardai composed the Prithviraj Raso, an epic poem in Hindi about the life of Prithviraj. A barot of Jagati(jalsar) gotra, he was a worshiper of the goddess Saraswati, who gave him the boon of Bardai.[citation needed]

The Prithviraj Raso was embellished with time and quite a few authors added to it. Only parts of the original manuscript are still intact. There are many versions of Raso but scholars agree that a 1400 stanza poem is the real "Prithivraj Raso". In its longest form the poem comprises upwords of 10,000 stanzas.[citation needed]

The Prithviraj Raso is a source of information on the social and clan structure of the Kshatriya communities of northern India. The historicity of Prithviraj Raso was proved unreliable by historical writers like Buhler, Morrison, GH Ojha and Munshi Devi Prasad.[1]


Chand Bardai was married twice. His wives Kamla and Gauran gave birth to 10 sons, namely Sur, Sunder, Sujan, Jalhan, Vallah, Balbhadra, Kehari, Vir Chand, Avdut and Gunraj, and one daughter, Rajabai.[citation needed]

Career and work[edit]

The royal poet had mastery of grammar, literature, astrology, prosody and the Puranas. He was conversant with the Abhiri, Autkali, Chandali, Dravirhini, Shkari, Swali and Vijaitia dialects. One of his most famous work was Prithviraj Raso. He compiled it in the archaic form of Brajbhasa. It is a long poem consisting of nearly 100,000 stanzas elucidating a chronicle of his master’s achievements and the historical accounts. According to Colonel Tod, the poems of Chand Bardai have frequent indistinct references to fire arms, especially the malgola. Impressed by the classic elegance of the work, Colonel Tod translated about 30,000 stanzas into English. French scholar Garsa-de-Tasse certified and testified the authority of this compilation.[citation needed]

Chand Bardai was not only a court poet but was a member of the inner circle of the king. The poet accompanied the king during wars. In the second battle of Tarain (now Taraori, near Karnal in Haryana state — then Punjab) in 1192, Prithviraj lost and captured by Mohammad Ghori and Chand Bardai accompanied him.After the king was blinded at Ghori's court it was only with the help of Chand Bardai that Prithiviraj could kill Mohammad Ghori. (not authenticated by any historical document as Ghori died around 14 years after the execution of Prithviraj). This event is described by Chand Bardai in the couplet,"Chaar baas, chaubees gaj, angul ashta pramaan, ta upar sultaan hai, mat chukoe chauhan". Although there are many other forms of this recital, this is the one mentioned in Prithviraj Raso. These events, as written by Bardai and later completed by his son are described in the article on Prithviraj Raso.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Ayyappappanikkar; Sahitya Akademi (1 January 1997). Medieval Indian literature: an anthology. Sahitya Akademi. pp. 142–. ISBN 978-81-260-0365-5. Retrieved 28 September 2011. 

Public Domain This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. 

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