Pather Panchali (novel)

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Pather Panchali
Author Bibhutibhushan Bandopadhyay
Original title পথের পাঁচালী
Country India
Language Bengali
Genre Bildungsroman, tragedy, family drama
Publisher Ranjan Prakashalay, BY 1336,
Publication date
BY 1336, CE 1929
Followed by Aparajito

Pather Panchali (Bengali পথের পাঁচালী, Pôther Pãchali, translated as Song of the Road[1]) is a novel written by Bibhutibhushan Bandopadhyay and was later adapted into a film of the same name by Satyajit Ray. Pather Panchali deals with the life of the Roy family, both in their ancestral village in rural Bengal and later when they move to Varanasi in search of a better life, as well as the anguish and loss they face during their travels.

Originally published in 1929, this was the first published novel written by the author.[2] It was followed in 1932 by a sequel Aparajito, which was later also adapted into a film of the same name by Satyajit Ray.


Pather Panchali was translated first to Telugu under the same name by Maddipatla Suri in 1960 and it was published. Pather Panchali was translated to Sinhalese under the name Mawathe Geethaya (Sinhala) by Chintha Lakshmi Sinhaarachchi which was published in 1986.[3] This was immensely popular in Sri Lanka and was followed by the translations of the other two books of the Apu trilogy by the same translator.

'Pather Panchali' was translated into Malayalam under the name, 'Pather Panchali - Paathayuday Sangeetham' by Mr. M. K. N. Potty, which was first published in April 2009 by Green Books Pvt Ltd., Trichur, Kerala.

An English translation was published in 1976, as part of the UNESCO Collection of Representative Works.[4]

An adaptation for radio by Tanika Gupta was broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on 24 February & 3 March 2013 as a "Classic Serial".[5]


  1. ^ Pather Panchali, Oxford University Press, ISBN 0-19-565709-8
  2. ^ Various authors (1987). Encyclopaedia of Indian literature vol. 1. Sahitya Akademi. p. 365. ISBN 81-260-1803-8. Retrieved 2008-11-27. 
  3. ^ Mawathe Geethaya. Chintha Lakshmi Sinhaarachchi (trans.). Wijesooriya Grantha Kendraya. 2003. ISBN 978-955-652-027-9. 
  4. ^ "Pather Panchali. A Bengali Novel". Retrieved 2012-08-03. 
  5. ^ "Pather Panchali--Song of the Road". British Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 3 March 2013.