Whom did Lord Krishna marry? How many wives did Lord Krishna had? Know about Ashtabharya, Krishna’s eight wives. Ashtabharya is the group of the eight principal queen-consorts of Hindu God Krishna. The list of Ashtabharyas is found in the Bhagavata Purana. The names of Ashtabharyas are Rukmini, Satyabhama, Jambavati, Kalindi, Mitravinda, Nagnajiti, Bhadra and Lakshmana. The king of Dwarka, Lord Krishna is said to be an avatar of the Lord Vishnu.
Apart from his eight principal wives, Lord Krishna is described to have married several women those he rescued from the demon Narakasura. The Bhagavata Purana and the Harivamsa (appendix of Mahabharata) state that 16,000 women were rescued, however the number differs in other Hindu scriptures such as Vishnu Purana and Mahabharata.
Hindu texts mention about the hierarchy of Ashtabharyas, the eight wives of Lord Krishna. There are three basic groups of Ashtabharyas. The group includes Rukmini as wealth-goddess, Satyabhama as earth-goddess and Jambavati as goddess of victory. The second group includes Aryavarta representing the central kingdoms, Nagnajiti representing the eastern kingdoms and Lakshmana representing the western side of the kingdom. The last and third group includes Mitravinda and Bhadra representing Yadava clan.
Ashtabharya – Krishna’s Eight Wives
Rukmini, the princess of Vidarbha was Lord Krishna’s first wife. She was the Patrani (queen) of Dwarka kingdom. Rukmini is considered as an avatar of Devi Lakshmi. She represent the fortune of Lord Krishna and his kingdom. Crown-prince Pradyumna was the son of Rukmini and Krishna. Devi Rukmini is also known as Ruciranana (one with a beautiful face like a lotus flower) and Vaidarbhi (princess of vidarbha). In her form as Rakhumai, Devi Rukmini is worshipped as the consort of Lord Vithoba in Pandharpur.
Satyabhama is the second most important wife of God Krishna. Devi Satyabhama is said to be an avatar of Bhudevi, the earth goddess. Satyabhama is known for her strong will. It was Satyabhama whi aided Lord Krishna to defeat the demon Narakasura.
Jambavati is the third of the Ashtabharya, the eight principal queen of Lord Krishna. Although she was married second to Lord Krishna, but Devi Jambavati was third in the order of importance. Lord Krishna married Jambavati, when he defeated King Jambavant to retrieve the stolen Syamantaka jewel. Devi Jambavati is the daughter of the bear-king Jambavant.
Yamuna, the holy river is the fourth queen of Lord Krishna and she is known as Kalindi. She is also known as Yami as she is the twin sister of Lord Yama, the Hindu God of death. Devi Yamuna is the daughter of the Hindu God Surya and his wife Saranyu. As described in Agni Purana, Devi Yamuna is depicted as black in complexion and stands on her mount, the tortoise. She holds a water pot in her hand.
Nagnajiti, also known as Satya, is the sixth of the Ashtabharyas. Nagnajiti is the daughter of the King Nagnajita of Kosala. Lord Krishna married Nagnajiti in the svayamvara.
Mitravinda is the fifth of the Ashtabharya. Devi Mitravinda is the daughter of King Jayasena of the kingdom of Avanti. Devi Mitravinda’s mother Rajadhidevi is the sister of Krishna’s father Vasudeva. Which makes Mitravinda the first cousin of Lord Krishna. Mitravinda was so virtuous that she is known as Shaibya or Shaivya in Vishnu Purana.
Bhadra is the seventh of the Ashtabharya. She is also known as Kaikeyi, the princess of the Kaikeya kingdom. Bhadra was the daughter of King Dhrishtaketu and his wife Shrutakirti, the sister of Kunti and the cousin of Vasudeva (Krishna’s father) and thus Krishna’s cousin.
Lakshmana, also known as Lakshana is the last of the Ashtabharya. It is mentioned in the Bhagavata Purana that Devi Lakshmana is endowed with good qualities. Devi Lakshmana is known as Charuhasini, one with a lovely smile. In the Vishnu Purana, although Devi Lakshmana is included in the Ashtabharya list, queen Madri is explicitly mentioned as the princess of Madra. She was the daughter of King Dhrishtaketu and his wife Shrutakirti. Queen Shrutakirti was the sister of Kunti and the cousin of Vasudeva, Krishna’s father.