“Vaisampayana said, ‘When the king (Drupada) expressed his desire ofbestowing his daughter on that Brahmana (who had shot the mark), allthose monarchs who had been invited to the Swayamvara, looking at oneanother, were suddenly filled with wrath.
And they said, ‘Passing us byand treating the assembled monarchs as straw this Drupada desireth tobestow his daughter–that first of women,–on a Brahmana! Having plantedthe tree he cutteth it down when it is about to bear fruit. The wretchregardeth us not: therefore let us slay him. He deserveth not our respectnor the veneration due to age. Owing to such qualities of his, we shall,therefore, slay this wretch that insulteth all kings, along with his son.Inviting all the monarchs and entertaining them with excellent food, hedisregardeth us at last. In this assemblage of monarchs like unto aconclave of the celestials, doth he not see a single monarch equal untohimself? The Vedic declaration is well-known that the Swayamvara is forthe Kshatriyas. The Brahmanas have no claim in respect of a selection ofhusband by a Kshatriya damsel. Or, ye kings, if this damsel desireth notto select any one of us as her lord, let us cast her into the fire andreturn to our kingdoms. As regards this Brahmana, although he hath, fromofficiousness or avarice, done this injury to the monarchs, he should notyet be slain; for our kingdoms, lives, treasures, sons, grandsons, andwhatever other wealth we have, all exist for Brahmanas. Something must bedone here (even unto him), so that from fear of disgrace and the desireof maintaining what properly belongeth unto each order, other Swayamvarasmay not terminate in this way.’
“Having addressed one another thus, those tigers among monarchs enduedwith arms like unto spiked iron maces, took up their weapons and rushedat Drupada to slay him then and there. And Drupada beholding thosemonarchs all at once rushing towards him in anger with bows and arrows,sought, from fear, the protection of the Brahmanas. But those mightybowmen (Bhima and Arjuna) of the Pandavas, capable of chastising allfoes, advanced to oppose those monarchs rushing towards them impetuouslylike elephants in the season of rut. Then the monarchs with glovedfingers and upraised weapons rushed in anger at the Kuru princes, Bhimaand Arjuna, to slay them. Then the mighty Bhima of extraordinaryachievements, endued with the strength of thunder, tore up like anelephant a large tree and divested it of its leaves. And with that tree,the strong-armed Bhima, the son of Pritha, that grinder of foes, stood,like unto the mace-bearing king of the dead (Yama) armed with his fiercemace, near Arjuna that bull amongst men. And beholding that feat of hisbrother, Jishnu of extraordinary intelligence, himself also ofinconceivable feats, wondered much. And equal unto Indra himself inachievements, shaking off all fear he stood with his bow ready to receivethose assailants. And beholding those feats of both Jishnu and hisbrother, Damodara (Krishna) of superhuman intelligence and inconceivablefeats, addressing his brother, Halayudha (Valadeva) of fierce energy,said, ‘That hero there, of tread like that of a mighty lion, who draweththe large bow in his hand four full cubits in length, is Arjuna! There isno doubt, O Sankarshana, about this, if I am Vasudeva. That other herowho having speedily torn up the tree hath suddenly become ready to driveoff the monarchs is Vrikodara! For no one in the world, except Vrikodara,could today perform such a feat in the field of battle. And that otheryouth of eyes like unto lotus-petals, of full four cubits height, of gaitlike that of a mighty lion, and humble withal, of fair complexion andprominent and shining nose, who had, a little before, left theamphitheatre, is Dharma’s son (Yudhishthira). The two other youths, likeunto Kartikeya, are, I suspect, the sons of the twin Aswins. I heard thatthe sons of Pandu along with their mother Pritha had all escaped from theconflagration of the house of lac.’ Then Halayudha of complexion likeunto that of clouds uncharged with rain, addressing his younger brother(Krishna), said with great satisfaction, ‘O, I am happy to hear, as I dofrom sheer good fortune, that our father’s sister Pritha with theforemost of the Kaurava princes have all escaped (from death)!'”