Sakuntala of Kalidasa – English Translation

English Prose Translation of “Abhijnaana Saakuntalam of Kalidasa” by Sir Monier Williams (1819–1899).

The term Shakuntala means one who is brought up by birds (Shakun). There are references stating that Shakuntala was found by Rishi Kanva in forest as a baby surrounded by or as some believe being fed by birds, after being left by her mother, Menaka.

In Hindu mythology Sakuntala is the mother of Emperor Bharata and the wife of Dushyanta who was the founder of the Paurav Dynasty. Her story is told in the Mahabarata, Adi Parva and was dramatized by Kalidasa in his play Abhijnaana Saakuntalam (The Recognition of Sakuntala).

Kālidāsa is widely regarded as the greatest poet and dramatist in the Sanskrit language. His place in Sanskrit literature is akin to that of Shakespeare in English. His plays and poetry are primarily based on Hindu mythology and philosophy.



Sakuntala of Kalidasa – English Translation — 29 Comments

  1. Congratulations for your wonderful website.

    A Request
    Could you please post a Hindi translation of the above work: Kalidasa’s Shakuntala.


  2. Where can one find a down load of english translation of Shiv puran by kalidas. If not english then Hindi ? Please help .

    • I have not heard about Siva Puran authored by Kalidasa. Are you sure that Kalidasa has written a book named “Siva Purana”? Did you mean “Kumara Sambhava”?

  3. excellent work done ! superb..
    whre would i find original sanskrit text alongwith translation in hindi ? can anyone guide me ?
    once again Thanks excellent work done here..
    Hari OM TATSAT

    • Shanti Patel,

      There are several Hindi translations of Sakuntalam with Sanskrit text available at DLI – Digital Library of India –
      You could download books from DLI in PDF format using DLI Downloader, a free software available at

  4. i have posted this entry at 3.28 AM on October 7,2012 then how come it shows different date & timing ? My system updates are ok !

  5. I read the email exchange: “Both the books, Hanumannatakam and Mahanatakam, are available at DLI. NAMASTE HOW CAN I GET THOSE BOOKS ( HANUMANNATAKAM OR MAHANATAKAM ). I have sent you a mail with detailed instructions for downloading the books.

    I am also interested in obtaining a English language version of Hanumannatakam and Mahanatakam. Are these available and how can i obtain them.

    thank you


    • Your question is not clear. If you are asking about the difference between the works of Kalidasa and Monier Williams, ‘Abhijnana Sakuntalam’ by Kalidasa is an original work in Sanskrit while Monier Williams’s work is only an English translation of Kalidasa’s Sakuntalam.

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