Rajasthani is an Indo-Aryan language having its roots in Vedic Sanskrit and Sauraseni Prakrit. Its script is Devanagri. It has a fund of folk literature consisting of ballads, songs, proverbs, folk tales and panegyrics.
Historians have divided traditional poetry into two periods: the early period starting from 1050 A.D. and ending with 1450 and the second period from 1450-1850 A.D. Thereafter it is modern poetry. The early period abounds in Jain poetry. The richest period of poetry and prose composition is the next period. All the masterpieces of traditional poetry are the products of this period. Besides a great many full length poetic works dealing with wars, mythological events and devotional themes, several dohas and geetas (kind of metre) have been composed on all kinds of subjects. Padmanabha, Vihu Sujo, Aluj are a few of the important composers of the period.
Modern poetry stars from the 40's of this century. This reflects the impact of western culture. The first book of modern poetry is Badli (cloud) by Chandra Singh (b. 1912). It describes the joys and sorrows of rain in the desert. N.R.Sanskarta, N.S.Bhatti, R.Kalpit and G.L.Vyasa are important modern poets.
Mention may also be made of Vijaja Dan Detha and Rewat Dan Charan whose contribution to modern Rajasthani literature is considerable. Drama and novel have not flourished well in Rajasthan; but short stories (known as Vat) are many and of high standard. M.D.Vyasa pioneered the modern short stories with his Varasganth (the birthday, 1956).
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