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Sarvadamana Character Analysis

Sarvadamana is King Dusyanta’s and Shakuntala’s son. He is destined to become a world emperor, a fate prophesied by Vaikhanasa at the beginning of the play. He doesn’t appear in the play until the final act, when Dusyanta visits Marica’s celestial realm (where Sarvadamana was born and raised) and discovers that the willful, spoiled little boy is his son. Sarvadamana then goes to Dusyanta’s capital with his reunited parents. In later life he will be called Bharata, “Sustainer.”

Sarvadamana Quotes in Shakuntala

The Shakuntala quotes below are all either spoken by Sarvadamana or refer to Sarvadamana. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
The Natural World, The Body, and Spiritual Beauty Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Oxford University Press edition of Shakuntala published in 2008.
Act 7  Quotes

MATALI [looking at the king]. Your Majesty could sit at the foot of this ashoka tree, while I find the right moment to announce your arrival to Indra’s father.

KING. Whatever you advise. [He sits.]

MATALI. I shall go now. [He exits.]

KING [sensing an omen].

My desire is hopeless, yet this vein
Throbs in my arm—
Once abandoned, fortune
Is incessant pain.

OFF-STAGE VOICE. Don’t act so rashly! How he reverts to his nature!

KING [listening]. This is no place for uncontrolled behavior. Who can they be reprimanding? [Looking in the direction of the voice, surprised] Ah! And what kind of child is this, guarded by two female ascetics, and so much stronger than his years? […] Why am I drawn to this child, as though to my own son?

Related Characters: King Dusyanta (speaker), Matali (speaker), Sarvadamana
Page Number: 94
Explanation and Analysis:

KING [seeing Shakuntala]. Ah, it is the lady Shakuntala!

Her robes are dusky, drab,
Her hair a single braid,
Her cheeks drawn in by penance—
She’s been so pure and constant
In that vow of separation
I so callously began.

SHAKUNTALA [seeing the KING pale from suffering]. He doesn’t look like my husband. Who is this who dares to pollute my son with his touch, in spite of the amulet?

BOY [running to his mother]. Mamma, this stranger is calling me his son!

KING. My dear, that cruelty I practiced on you has come full circle, since now it is I who need to be recognized by you.

Related Characters: Shakuntala (speaker), King Dusyanta (speaker), Sarvadamana (speaker)
Page Number: 98
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire Shakuntala LitChart as a printable PDF.
Shakuntala PDF

Sarvadamana Character Timeline in Shakuntala

The timeline below shows where the character Sarvadamana appears in Shakuntala. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Act 7 
The Natural World, The Body, and Spiritual Beauty Theme Icon
Duty vs. Love Theme Icon
Prophecies and Curses Theme Icon
...he’s distracted by the arrival of a little boy (who later turns out to be Sarvadamana), playing with a lion cub and accompanied by two female ascetics. (full context)
The Natural World, The Body, and Spiritual Beauty Theme Icon
Prophecies and Curses Theme Icon
...ascetics remarks, “I’m astonished that you and the boy are so alike!” She explains that Sarvadamana belongs to the Puru lineage, and though a child of the royal line would normally... (full context)
Duty vs. Love Theme Icon
Concealment and Separation Theme Icon
Marica confirms that their son, Sarvadamana, will be a universal emperor who will later be called Bharata, “Sustainer.” One of Marica’s... (full context)