Dasharatha (Sanskrit: दशरथ,
IAST Daśaratha) was a descendant
Ikshvaku dynasty (also known as
Suryavamsha or Raghuvamsa
dynasty) and the King of
Ayodhya as mentioned in the Hindu epic, the
Dasharatha was the son of Aja and Indumati. He had three wives;
Sumitra and out of the union bore
principal character in the Ramayana), Bharatha, Lakshmana, Shatrughna
1 Early life
Yajna To Beget Sons
3 Boons To Kaikeyi
4 Killing Of
7 External links
Dasharatha was the son of King Aja of
Ayodhya and Princess Indumati of
Vidarbha. His birth name was Nemi, but he acquired the name Dasharatha
as his chariot could move in all ten directions, fly as well as come
down on earth and he could fight with ease in all these directions.
Dasharatha became king after his parents died. He was a great warrior
who single-handedly conquered the whole earth with his prowess and
defeated and slew many Asuras in war.
Dasharath had three queen consorts, namely, Kaushalya,
Kaushalya was from the Kingdom of Magadha.
Sumitra was from
Kaikeyi was from Kekeya Kingdom. Having an immense desire to
beget a son, Dasharath promised
Kaikeyi that the son she bore would
succeed him as King of
Ayodhya after she pleaded with him in the Kop
Yajna To Beget Sons
Agnipuruṣa rises from the sacred fire
Payasa to his wives
Birth Of Four Sons Of Dasharath
Dasharath performed two yajnas with the help of Sage
the advice of Vasishtha.
The building for King Dasaratha's ashwamedha sacrifice
Ashwamedha and other was Putrakameshti. It is said that
Kaushalya had a daughter Shanta, who was Rishyashringa's
wife. As the conclusion of the
Yagna drew near,
Agni sprang out from
the yagnakunda (sacrificial fire pit) and handed
Dasharatha a pot of
kheer (payasa), advising him to distribute it among his queens.
God emerge from fire give food to Dasratha.
Kaushalya ate half the kheer,
Sumitra ate a quarter of it.
some and passed the pot back to
Sumitra who consumed the kheer for the
Thus the princes were conceived after the consumption of the kheer.
Kaushalya had consumed the largest portion she gave birth to
Kaikeyi gave birth to Bharata.
Sumitra gave birth to Lakshmana
Vishvamitra came to
Dasharatha to send
Rama to fight with demons.
Boons To Kaikeyi
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A maid of Queen
Manthara convinced her that the throne
Dasharatha belonged to her son Bharata and that her
Rama (the hero of Ramayana)—should be exiled
from the kingdom. The ugly maid also reminded her of the promise made
to her by Dasharath when she saved him in the great war against the
Asuras, that she was promised 2 boons and she could use them to make
Bharata king.By crowning
Rama as king,
Dasharatha would be doing
injustice to her as she wanted Bharata to be king.
Thus, after this conversation,
Dasharatha is reminded by
the two boons he has yet to fulfill for her. She talks of the time
when she saved him from the demons during a celestial battle against
Sambasura, an enemy of both
Indra and Dasharatha. During a fierce
battle between the two, the wheel of Dasharatha's chariot broke and
Sambasura's arrow pierced the King's armor and lodged in his chest.
Kaikeyi, who was acting as Dasharatha's charioteer, quickly repaired
the broken wheel and then drove the chariot away from the battlefield.
She nursed the wounded King back to health. Touched by her courage and
Dasharatha offered her two boons. However, Kaikeyi
chose to ask for those boons later. King
Dasharatha is obliged to
Kaikeyi demands that Bharata be crowned king and
sent to the forest for fourteen years. Hearing this,
into a swoon and passes the night in a pitiable condition in Kaikeyi's
The blind hermit and his wife mourn their son, who was slain
accidentally by Dasaratha.
After Rama's departure to the forest,
Dasharatha lies in his bed with
a wailing Kaushalya. He suddenly remembers an incident which had
occurred in the past. He narrates to
Kaushalya about how, by accident,
he had killed a young boy named
Shravana mistaking him to be a deer.
Dasharatha who was then a crown prince had gone hunting on the banks
of River Saryu. He was an expert in hunting by determining the
direction of sound and heard the gurgle of an animal drinking water.
Mistaking it to be a Deer
Dasharatha shot an arrow. He became
mortified when he heard a human cry as the arrow found its target.
Dasharatha hurried there to find a boy lying sprawled on the banks of
the river with an arrow lodged in his chest. The boy rebukes
Dasharatha for his unrighteous act and demands that he pull the arrow
out of his chest. He also tells him to take the pitcher of water to
his blind parents who must be waiting for him. The boy dies.
Dasharatha approaches the blind couple and tells them about their
son's unfortunate death. The parents, grief-stricken curse the prince:
"Just as we are dying due to the separation from our beloved son, you
too shall have the same fate."
Dasharatha concludes the chapter by
saying that his end is near and the curse has taken effect. The place
Shravana is now known as
Death of King Dasharatha
Following his narration of Shravana,
Dasharatha passes away in the
night due to the pain and misery of his separation from Rama. His
funeral rites were performed by Bharata and
Shatrughna who were called
back from Kekeya.
Bharata fainted during his father Dasratha's cremation.
His Palace is in Faizabad district (U.P.) about 18.1 km away from
Bilhar Ghat. It is beside the bank of the
Sarayu River where he was
cremated. This place is very devotional for Hindus.
Ayodhya City to Bilhar Ghat
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Dasaratha.
Ramayana, translated in English by Griffith, from Project Gutenberg
Ramayana by Valmiki
Ramayana by[permanent dead link] Tulsidas
Ramayana by Valmiki
Seven Books (Kandas)
and inspired works
Hikayat Seri Rama
Phra Lak Phra Ram
Ramayan (TV series)