ItalyIndia design
ItalyIndia design
ItalyIndia design
ItalyIndia design
ItalyIndia design
ItalyIndia design
ItalyIndia design

29. Dhola-Maru epic of love

illustration: on blue backgroung a couple ride a camel in front of a big moon. On the right the text: The legend of dhola maru

True love overcomes everything and everyone who’s fool enough to oppose it. True love makes you dream.
Since time immemorial, Rajasthan’s imaginary rides on magic camels, dreaming with the legend of Dhola and Maru. Their romantic adventures are still told by storytellers, by actors and marionettes of the popular theatre or the cinema. You can also read them on ancient codex or frescoes, just like the ones of Takhat Villas, in Jodhpur fort.

In ancient times, Rajasthan was struck by a terrible drought. Pugal’s maharaja traveled with his wife and daughter Maru in Pushkar, to assess the damages and invoke the rain. Also Nalwar’s maharaja was there for the same reasons, along with his wife and his son, Dhola. The two kings became friends, and sealed the alliance between the two realm arranging the wedding between Dhola and Maru – no more than children at the time. Eventually the rain came, and everyone got back to their respective realm.
Years passed. Nalwar’s king died, and Dhola, forgetful of the wedding arrangement with Maru, married Malvani, daughter of Malvi’s raja. The two were happy together.

Several kilometers away, however, the young and lovelorn Maru was suffering the separation from her beloved betrothed – of whom she preserved a delightful remembrance.  She sent messengers to Dhola in vain for Malvani, jealous, intercepted them all.
But Destiny was already told, and Maru eventually reached her Dhola. She sent some minstrels to him with the saddest of the song she used to sang every night and day. When in Nalwar, singers were forced out by Malvani’s guard, but nighttime they camped outside the palace and, under the moonlight, they sang Maru’s lovesong.
Music was filled with a magical power, and Dhola awoke, incapable to sleep again. Minstrels were invited to reach the court the morning after to sing the song of the sad, forgotten Maru. Suddenly, Dhola remembered everything and his heart filled with the desire to reconcile with his Maru. Malvani was desperate and prayed Dhola to reconsider: but nothing could stop him, and he left for Pugal.
In Pugal, the prince was warmly welcomed by everyone. A great celebration started to honor the two betrothed. At the end of that, the newlyweds traveled back to Nalwar. Maru’s long wait was healed with love.

But this is not over yet. Umar, a local noblemen who was fond of Maru, joined a group of brigands and planned his vengeance. During the travel, Dhola and Maru met Umar, that hosted them in his caravanserai. Dhola accepted, unaware of the danger, and feasted with a great dinner and Umar’s precious liquor. However, some minstrels (them again!) discovered Umar’s bad intentions and warned Maru. The girl rode her flying camel, a magical gift, and rescued her husband from the brigands.
When Nalwar was near, Maru died by the bite of a poisonous snake. Dhola was about to immolate himself on her beloved’s pyre, when a couple o ascents came (sent by Shiva and Parvati, or avatar of themselves). Thanks to their wisdom, they revived Maru. Blessed by the gods, Dhola and Maru came back to Nalwar, where Malvati was there, resigned to share Dhola with Maru.
And so love prevailed.




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