Daughter of St. Viswamita, and Menakâ a water-nymph. Abandoned by her parents, she was brought up by a hermit. One day King Dushyanta came to the hermitage during a hunt, and persuaded Sakuntala to marry him, and in due time a son was born. When the boy was six years old, she took it to its father, and the king recognised his wife by a ring which he had given her. She was now publicly proclaimed his queen, and Bhârata, his son and heir, became the founder of the glorious race of the Bhâratas. This story forms the plot of the celebrated drama of Kâlidasa, called Sakuntala, made known to us by Sir W. Jones.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894