Sandhyakar Nandi

Sandhyakar Nandi (c 1084-1155 AD) Sanskrit poet, was born in a kayastha family at Brihadbatu, a village close to Pundravardhana city in Varendrabhumi in North Bengal. His father, Prajapati Nandi was a minister (truce-maker) of Rampal (c 1082-1124), the king of the Pala dynasty. Sandhyakar himself was patronised by Madanpala (c 1143-1162).

Sandhyakar is considered to be the greatest poet of the Pala dynasty. He became famous for his ramacharitam, a biographical history in verse; written in sanskrit the book has two different themes. Laid out in four chapters, the first part of the book describes the biography of ramachandra, son of Dasharatha, and the second part narrates the life of Rampala, the king of Gauda. At the end of the book, the poet describes himself in twenty couplets where he condemns malicious people, praises good ones and narrate the high points of his book.

Ramacharitam is recognised by historians as an important source for reconstructing the ancient history of Bengal. [Kanailal Ray]