Baffling as certainly an endeavour to provide an exhaustive list of Tagore’s achievements in the various fields like music, dance, painting, histrionics, education, etc., would be, even the effort to describe his output within the limited field of literary and poetic writing would be, difficult. Indeed his contribution to ever so many types and forms of writing is amazing, if not defying adequate enumeration. As one of his admirers, the lateMahamahopadhyaya Harprasada Sastri, said: “He has tried all phases of literature–couplets, stanzas, short poems, long pieces, short stories, fables, novels and prose romances, dramas, farces, comedies and tragedies, songs, opera, Kirtans, Palas and, last but not least, lyric poems. He has succeeded in every phase of literature he has touched, but he has succeeded, beyond measure, in the last phase of literature. His essays are illuminating, his sarcasms biting, his satires piercing. His estimate of old poets is deeply appreciative, and his grammatical and lexicographical speculations go further inwards than those of most of us.”
We can add to what has been said above, that he has written also much on religious topics, educational problems, social questions, economic and philosophical speculations and on music. He is reported to be an authority on metrical forms. He is also one of the most informed of Bengali critics. His epistolary exuberance is perhaps unrivalled, in his own language, for its quality, quantity and manner. In his venture on prose poems he has few equals. His familiarity and real interest in modern science received no greater satisfaction than in producing a beautiful book upon it by the name of Visva Parichaya. In the field of writing charades in Bengali he was almost a genius. Dance-plays were of his favourite creations. Nursery rhymes, primers for school children, nonsense verses, picture books for youngsters, can also be added to illustrate the fecundity of his imaginative writings.
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