Krishna Admonishes the Gopis (Primary Title)
The verses above this painting are from Book Ten of the Bhagavata Purana, which records Krishna’s youth, especially his amorous adventures with the gopis (cow maidens) of Vrindavan. So powerful was their attraction to the handsome young god that they regularly abandoned their husbands and responsibilities for nighttime encounters in the forest with him. Krishna here chides a great crowd of gopis in a jungle clearing illuminated by a silvery circle of light from the full moon. The blue-skinned deity torments these women: “Tell me why you have come. Oh Graceful Ones, the night is frightful, and haunted by terrible creatures. . . . Women should not remain
here.” Hurt and frustrated by Krishna’s admonition, the women wipe their eyes, scratch the ground with their feet, or hold their hands to their foreheads in sorrow and despair.
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