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You are here : home > Stories > Great Indian Personalities > Rabindranath Tagore

Rabindranath Tagore

Rabindranath Tagore

Rabindranath Tagore

Even though, he was most famous as a poet, he was also an artist, novelist, playwright, philosopher and freedom fighter. Or simply, the writer of songs filled with love. His poetry covered a vast range of topics from nature to patriotism.

Early Life

Born on 8th May 1861 in Calcutta to Maharishi Devendranath, who himself came from a family of nobility, he was the youngest of 14 children. The family was addressed by the honourable title 'Thakur' which was later changed to Tagore.

His mother Sharadadevi expired when he was still young, and his father rarely spent much quality time with him. As a result he grew up extremely sensitive and non - conventional. He could not tolerate any kind of authority, and so, his schooling suffered. But he made up for all this, with the beautiful, mystical poems that he wrote, right from childhood.

His Life's Work

Tagore wrote numerous stories, songs, dramas, letters, diaries and essays on a variety of subjects ranging from religion to science, music to politics, education and social reform. Whatever he attempted had a distinctive style of its own. Even his works of art are nothing short of masterpieces. 

He received the Nobel Prize in Literature on Nov. 13, 1913, for his most famous work - 'Gitanjali'. This is a collection of poems that talk about life and death, love and its connection to the spirit. His well known novels written in Bengali are Gora, Vibha Raja aur Rani, Nauka Dubi and Binodini. Two of his short stories - Kabuliwallah and Kshudita Pashan have been immortalised.

His Contribution

With the money he received from the Nobel Prize, Tagore had established an international institution of learning called Shantiniketan in 1901. Today this goes under the name of Vishwabharati University and serves as a memorial to his name.

Tagore had also been conferred the title of 'Sir' by the British Government but he returned that honour after the Jallianwallah Baug tragedy (Amritsar) in 1919.

He expired on August 8, 1941, but is immortalised by his work and the love in the hearts of the people of India.

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