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Chapter 10

Mahabharata English - DRONA PARVA

“Vaisampayana said, ‘Having addressed the Suta’s son in this way,Dhritarashtra, afflicted with excessive grief of heart and hopeless ofhis son’s victory, fell down on the ground. Beholding him deprived of hissenses and fallen down, his attendants sprinkled him with perfumed andcold water, fanning him the while. Seeing him fallen, the Bharata ladiesO king, surrounded him on all sides and gently rubbed him with theirhands. And slowly raising the king from the ground, those royal ladies,their voices chocked with tears, seated him on his seat. Seated, the Kingcontinued to be under the influence of that swoon. And he remainedperfectly motionless, while they fanned him standing around. And atremour then passed over the monarch’s body and he slowly regained hissenses. And once more he began to interrogate Gavalgana’s son of the Sutacaste about the incidents, as they occured in the battle.’

“Dhritarashtra said, [That Ajatasatru] who, like the risen sun,dispelleth darkness by his own light; who rusheth against a foe as aswift and angry elephant with rent temples, incapable of being vanquishedby hostile leaders of herds, rusheth against a rival proceeding withcheerful face towards a female of the species in rust, O, what warriors(of my army) resisted that Ajatasatru as he came, for keeping him awayfrom Drona?[15] That hero, that foremost of persons, who hath slain manybrave warriors (of my army) in battle, that mighty-armed and intelligentand courageous prince of unbaffled prowess, who, unassisted by any one,can consume the entire host of Duryodhana by means of his terribleglances alone, that slayer by his sight, that one bent on winningvictory, that bowman, that hero of unfading glory, that self-restrainedmonarch who is revered by the whole world, O, who were those heroes (ofmy army) that surrounded that warrior?[16] That invincible prince, thatbowman of unfading glory, that tiger among men, that son of Kunti, whoadvancing with great celerity came upon Drona, that mighty warrior whoalways achieves grand feats against the foe, that hero of gigantic fameand great courage, who in strength is equal to ten thousand elephants, O,what brave combatants of my army surrounded that Bhimasena as he rushedupon my host? When that car-warrior of exceeding energy, viz., Vibhatsu,looking like a mass of clouds, came, emitting thunderbolts like theclouds themselves, shooting showers of arrows like Indra pouring rain,and making all the points of the compass resound with the slaps of hispalms and the rattle of his car-wheels, when that hero whose bow was likethe lightning’s flash and whose car resembled a cloud having for itsroars the rattle of its wheels (when that hero came) the whizz of whosearrows made him exceedingly fierce, whose wrath resembles an awful cloud,and who is fleet as the mind or the tempest, who always pierces the foedeep into his very vitals, who, armed with shafts, is terrible to lookat, who like Death himself bathes all the points of the compass withhuman blood in profusion, and who, with fierce uproar and awful visage,wielding the bow Gandiva incessantly pours on my warriors headed byDuryodhana shafts whetted on stone and furnished with vultures’ feathers,alas, when that hero of great intelligence came upon you, what became thestate of your mind? When that warrior having the huge ape on his bannercame, obstructing the welkin with dense showers of arrows, what becamethat state of your mind at sight of that Partha? Did Arjuna advance uponyou, slaying your troops with the twang of the Gandiva and achievingfierce feats on the way? Did Duryodhana take, with his shafts, yourlives, like the tempest destroying gathering masses of clouds or fellingforests of reeds, blowing through them? What man is there that is capableof bearing in battle the wielder of the Gandiva? Hearing only that he isstationed at the head of the (hostile) force, the heart of every foeseems to rend in twain. In that battle in which the troops trembled andeven heroes were struck with fear, who were they that did not desertDrona, and who were those cowards that abandoned him from fear? Who werethey that, reckless of their lives met Death himself, standing face toface with them, in the shape of Dhananjaya, who hath vanquished evensuperhuman combatants in battle? My troops are incapable of bearing theimpetus of that warrior having white steeds yoked unto his car and thetwang of Gandiva, that resembles the roll of the very clouds. That carwhich has Vishnu himself for its driver and Dhananjaya for its warrior,that car I regard to be incapable of being vanquished by the very godsand the Asuras united together. Delicate, young, and brave, and of a veryhandsome countenance, that son of Pandu who is gifted with intelligenceand skill and wisdom and whose prowess incapable of being baffled inbattle, when Nakula with loud noise and afflicting all hostile warriors,rushed at Drona, what heroes (of my army) surrounded him? When Sahadevawho resembles an angry snake of virulent poison, when that hero owningwhite steeds and invincible in battle, observant of laudable vows,incapable of being baffled in his purposes, gifted with modesty, andnever vanquished in fight, came upon us, what heroes (of our army)surrounded him? That warrior who, having crushed the mighty host of theSauvira king, took for his wife the beautiful Bhoja maiden of symmetricallimbs, that bull among men, viz., Yuyudhana, in whom are always truth andfirmness and bravery and Brahmacharya, that warrior gifted with greatmight, always practising truth, never cheerless, never vanquished, who inbattle is equal to Vasudeva and is regarded as his second self, who,through Dhananjaya’s instructions, hath become foremost in the use ofarrows, and who is equal to Partha himself in weapons, O, what warrior(of my army) resisted that Satyaki, for keeping him away from Drona? Theforemost hero among the Vrishnis, exceedingly brave among all bowmen,equal to Rama himself in (knowledge and the use of) weapons and inprowess and fame, (know, O Sanjaya, that) truth and firmness,intelligence and heroism, and knowledge of Brahma, and high weapons, areall in him (Satyaki) of the Satwata race, as the three worlds are inKesava. What heroes (of my army), approaching that mighty bowman,Satyaki, possessed of all those accomplishments and incapable of beingresisted by the very gods, surrounded him? The foremost among thePanchalas, possessed of heroism, high-born and the favourite of allhigh-born heroes, ever achieving good deeds in battle, viz., Uttamaujas,that Prince ever engaged in the welfare of Arjuna, born for only my evil,equal unto Yama, or Vaisaravana, or Aditya, or Mahendra, or Varuna, thatprince regarded as a mighty car-warrior and prepared to lay down his lifein the thick of battle, O, what heroes (of my army) surrounded him? Who(amongst my warriors) opposed Dhrishtaketu, that single warrior amongstthe Chedis who, deserting them, hath embraced the side of the Pandavas,while he rushed upon Drona? Who resisted the heroic Ketumat for keepinghim away from Drona, the brave Ketumat who slew prince Durjaya while thelatter had taken shelter in Girivraja? What heroes (of my army)surrounded Sikhandin, that tiger among men, who knows the merits anddemerits (in his own person) of manhood and femininity, that son ofYajnasena, who is always cheerful in battle, that hero who became thecause of the high-souled Bhishma’s death in battle, when he rushedtowards Drona? That foremost hero of the Vrishni race, that chief of allbowmen, that brave warrior in whom all accomplishments exist in a greaterdegree than in Dhananajaya himself, in whom are ever weapons and truthand Brahmacharya, who is equal to Vasudeva in energy and Dhananjaya instrength, who in splendour is equal to Aditya and in intelligence toVrihaspati, viz., the high-souled Abhimanyu, resembling Death himselfwith wide-open mouth, O what heroes (of my army) surrounded him when herushed towards Drona? That youth of vigorous understanding, that slayerof hostile heroes, viz., Subhadra’s son, O, when he rushed towards Drona,what became the state of your mind? What heroes surrounded those tigersamong men, viz., the sons of Draupadi, when they rushed in battle againstDrona like rivers rushing towards the sea? Those children who, giving upall (childish) sports for twelve years, and observing excellent vows,waited upon Bhishma for the sake of weapons, those children, viz.,Kshatranjaya and Kshatradeva and Kshatravarman and Manada, those heroicsons of Dhrishtadyumna, O, who resisted them, seeking to keep them awayfrom Drona? He whom the Vrishnis regarded as superior in battle to ahundred car-warriors, O, who resisted that great bowman, viz., Chekitana,for keeping him away from Drona? Those five Kekaya brothers, virtuous andpossessed of prowess, incapable of being baffled, resembling (in hue) theinsects called Indragopakas, with red coats of mail, red weapons and redbanners, those heroes that are the maternal cousins of the Pandavas andthat always wish for victory unto the latter, O, what heroes (of my army)surrounded those valiant princes when they rushed towards Drona forslaying him? That lord of battle, that foremost of bowmen, that hero ofunbaffled aim and great strength, that tiger among men, viz., Yuyutsu,whom many wrathful kings battling together for six months at Varanavatafrom desire of slaying him could not vanquish, and who in battle atVaranasi overthrew with a broad-headed arrow that mighty car-warrior,viz., the prince of Kasi, desirous of seizing (at a Swayamvara) a maidenfor wife, O, what hero (of my army) resisted him? That mighty bowman,viz., Dhrishtadyumna, who is the chief counsellor of the Pandavas, who isengaged in doing evil to Duryodhana, who was created for Drona’sdestruction, O, what heroes (of my army) surrounded him when he cametowards Drona, breaking through all my ranks and consuming all mywarriors in battle? That foremost of all persons conversant with weapons,who has been reared almost on Drupada’s lap, O, what warriors (of myarmy) surrounded that Sikhandin protected by (Arjuna’s) weapons, forkeeping him away from Drona? He who encompassed this earth by the loudrattle of his car as by a leathern belt, that mighty car-warrior andforemost of all slayers of foes, who, as (a substitute for) allsacrifices, performed, without hindrance, ten Horse sacrifices withexcellent food and drink and gifts in profusion, who ruled his subjectsas if they were his children, that Usinara’s son who in sacrifices gaveaway kine countless as the grains of sand in the Ganga’s stream, whosefeat none amongst men have been or will ever be able to imitate, afterthe performance of whose difficult feats the very gods had cried out,saying, ‘We do not see in the three worlds with their mobile and immobilecreatures a second person other than Usinara’s son who, was, has everbeen, or will ever be born, who hath attained to regions (in after-life)which are unattainable by human beings, O, who (amongst my army) resistedthat Saivya, that grandson of that Usinara’s son, while he came upon(Drona)? What heroes (of my army) surrounded the car-division of thatslayer of foes, viz.. Virata, the king of the Matsyas, while it reachedDrona in battle? Who kept away from Drona the gigantic Ghatotkacha, thatthorn (on the side), of my sons, that warrior who always wishes victoryunto the Pandavas, that heroic Rakshasa, possessed of extensive powers ofillusion, endued with great strength and great prowess, and born of Bhimain course of a single day, and of whom I entertain very great fears?[17]What, O Srinjaya, can remain unconquered by them for whose sake these andmany others are prepared to Jay down their lives in battle? How can thesons of Pritha meet with defeat, they, viz., that have the greatest ofall beings, the wielder of the bow called Sarnga, for their refuge andbenefactor? Vasudeva is, indeed, the great Master of all the worlds, theLord of all, and Eternal! Of celestial soul and infinite power, Narayanais the refuge of men in battle. The wise recite his celestial feats. Ialso will recite them with devotion, for recovering my firmness!'”

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