By Murāri
Translated by Judit Törzsök


“Rama Beyond Price,” a dramatised remake of the Ramáyana, is one of the most challenging pieces of Sanskrit poetry to read. Because of its elegant style, learned allusions and often striking imagery, the poem has been a great favourite among pundits, although it received little attention in the West until recently. The well-known epic story of Rama’s exploits is presented as a series of political intrigues and battles, and contrasted with lyrical passages of various kinds: on love and war, pride and honor, gods and demons, rites and myths, regions and cities of ancient India...

This is the first English translation of the only surviving work by Murári, a brahmin court poet, who lived some time between the eighth and tenth century CE, perhaps in Orissa or in neighbouring South India (details of date and place being ever elusive in the history of Indian literature).

On the night:

The carpentry of the sky is devoured by the wood-worms of the thick darkness; and from the worm-holes—the stars—falls the saw-dust in the guise of starlight.
On life in the city of Mahíshmati:
Embraces, kisses, feasts of pleasure and joy...—all these are wagers in a playful game in which the bail is the God of Love. And although enjoyment is the prize of both the winner and the loser, young men and women are such that their hearts desire to win.
638 pp.  |  ISBN-13: 978-0-8147-8295-8  |  ISBN-10: 0-8147-8295-7  |  Co-published by New York University Press and JJC Foundation

About the Translator

Judit Törzsök is Lecturer in Sanskrit, Université Charles-de-Gaulle, Lille. She also translated “Friendly Advice” and “King Víkrama’s Adventures” for the CSL.