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Chapter 118

Mahabharata English - DRONA PARVA

“Dhritarashtra said, ‘Beholding the grandson of Sini proceeding towardsArjuna, grinding as he went that large force, what, indeed, O Sanjaya,did those shameless sons of mine do? When Yuyudhana who ‘is equal toSavyasachin himself was before them, how, indeed, could those wretches,that were at the point of death, set their hearts upon battle? What alsodid all those Kshatriyas, vanquished in battle, then, do? How, indeed,could Satyaki of world-wide renown pass through them in battle? How also,O Sanjaya, when my sons were alive, could the grandson of Sini go tobattle? Tell me all this. This is exceedingly wonderful, O sire, that Ihave heard from thee, viz., this encounter between one and the many, thelatter, again, being all mighty car-warriors. O Suta, I think, Destiny isnow unpropitious to my sons, since so many mighty car-warriors have beenslain by that one warrior of the Satwata race, Alas, O Sanjaya, my armyis no match for even one warrior, viz., Yuyudhana inflamed with wrath.Let all the Pandavas hang up these weapons. Vanquishing in battle Dronahimself who skilled in weapons and conversant with all modes of warfare,Satyaki will slay my sons, like a lion slaying smaller animals. Numerousheroes, of whom Kritavarman is the first, contending vigorously inbattle, could not slay Yuyudhana. The latter, without doubt, will slay mysons. Phalguna himself fought not in the manner in which the renownedgrandson of Sini has fought.’

“Sanjaya said, ‘All this, O king, has been brought about by thy evilcounsels and the acts of Duryodhana. Listen attentively to what, OBharata, I say unto thee. At the command of thy son, the Samsaptakas,rallying, all resolved upon fighting fiercely. Three thousand bowmenheaded by Duryodhana, with a number of Sakas and Kamvojas and Valhikasand Yavanas and Paradas, and Kalingas and Tanganas and Amvashtas andPisachas and Barbaras and mountaineers, O monarch, inflamed with rage andarmed with stone, all rushed against the grandson of Sini like insectsagainst a blazing fire. Five hundred other warriors, O king, similarlyrushed against Satyaki. And another mighty body consisting of a thousandcars, a hundred great car-warriors, a thousand elephants, two thousandheroes, and countless foot-soldiers, also rushed against the grandson ofSini. Duhsasana, O Bharata, urging all those warriors, saying, ‘Slay him,surrounded Satyaki therewith. Grand and wonderful was the conduct that wethen beheld of Sini’s grandson, inasmuch as alone he fought fearlesslywith those innumerable foes. And he slew that entire body of car-warriorsand that elephant force, and all those horsemen and that entire body ofrobbers. Like the autumnal firmament bespangled with stars, the field ofbattle there became strewn with car-wheels broken and crushed by means ofhis mighty weapons with innumerable Akshas and beautiful cart-shaftsreduced to fragments, with crushed elephants and fallen standards, withcoats of mail and shields scattered all about, with garlands andornaments and robes and Anuskarshas, O sire! Many foremost of elephants,huge as hills, and born of the race of Anjana or Vamana, O Bharata, or ofother races, many foremost of tuskers, O king, lay there on the ground,deprived of life. And Satyaki slew, O monarch, many foremost of steeds ofthe Vanayu, the mountain, the Kamvoja and the Valhika breeds. And thegrandson of Sini also slew foot-soldiers there, in hundreds andthousands, born in various realms and belonging to various nations.Whilst those soldiers were being thus slaughtered, Duhsasana, addressingthe robbers said, ‘Ye warriors unacquainted with morality, fight! Why doyou retreat?’ Beholding them run away without paying any heed to hiswords, thy soil Duhsasana urged on the brave mountaineers, skilled infighting with stones, saying, ‘Ye are accomplished in battling withstones. Satyaki is ignorant of this mode of warfare. Stay ye, therefore,that warrior who, though desirous of battle, is ignorant of your mode offight. The Kauravas also are all unacquainted with this mode of battle.Rush ye at Satyaki. Do not fear. Satyaki will not be able to approachyou.’ Thus urged, those Kshatriyas dwelling on the mountains, allacquainted with the method of fighting with stones, rushed towards thegrandson of Sini like ministers towards a king. Those denizens of themountain then, with stones huge as elephants’ heads uplifted in theirhands, stood before Yuyudhana in that battle. Others, urged by thy son,and desirous of slaying Satwata, encompassed the latter on all sides,armed with missiles. Then, Satyaki, aiming at those warriors rushing athim from desire of fighting with stones, sped at them showers of keenshafts. That bull amongst the Sinis, with those shafts looking likesnakes, cut into fragments that dense shower of stones thrown by themountaineers. The fragments of those stones, looking like a swarm ofblazing fire-flies, slew many combatants there, whereupon, O sire, criesof oh and alas arose on the field. Then, again, five hundred bravewarriors with huge stones uplifted in their hands, fell down, O king, onthe ground, their arms cut off. And once more a full thousand, and againa hundred thousand, amongst others, fell down without being able toapproach Satyaki, their arms with stones still in grasp cut off by him.Indeed, Satyaki slew many thousands of those warriors fighting withstones. All this seemed exceedingly wonderful. Then many of them,returning to the fight, hurled at Satyaki showers of stones, And armedwith swords and lances many Daradas and Tanganas and Khasas and Lampakasand Pulindas, hurled their weapons at him. Satyaki however,well-conversant with the application of weapons, cut off those stones andweapons by means of his shafts. Those stones while being pierced, brokenin the welkin by Satyaki’s whetted shafts, produced a fierce noise, atwhich many car-warriors and steeds and elephants fled away from battle.And struck with the fragments of those stones, men and elephants andsteeds, became incapable of staying in battle, for they felt as if theywere bit by wasps. The small remnant of the elephants (that had attackedSatyaki), covered with blood, their heads, and frontal globes split open,then fled away from, Yuyudhana’s car. Then there arose among thy troops,O sire, while they were being thus ground by Madhava a noise like that ofthe ocean at full tide. Hearing that great uproar, Drona, addressing hischarioteer, said, ‘O Suta, that great car-warrior of the Satwata race,excited with wrath, is tearing our army into diverse fragments, andcareering in battle like the Destroyer himself. Take thou the car to thatspot whence this furious uproar is coming. Without doubt, Yuyudhana isengaged with the mountaineers who battle with stones, Our car-warriorsare seen also to be borne away by their wildly running steeds. Manyamongst them, weaponless and armourless and wounded, are falling down.The charioteers are unable to check their steeds as these are rushingwildly.’ Hearing these words of Bharadwaja’s son, the charioteer saidunto Drona, that foremost of wielders of weapons, ‘Thou blest with lengthof days, the Katirava troops are flying away. Behold, our warriors,routed (by the foe), are flying in all directions. There, again, thoseheroes, viz., the Panchalas, and the Pandavas, united together, arerushing from all sides from desire of slaughtering thee, O chastiser offoes, do thou determine which of these tasks should first demandattention. Should we stay here (to meet the advancing Pandava), or shouldwe proceed (towards Satyaki)? As regards Satyaki, he is now far ahead ofus.’ While the charioteer, O sire, was speaking thus unto Bharadwaja’sson, the grandson of Sini suddenly appeared to the view, engaged inslaughtering a large number of car-warriors. Those troops of thine, whilebeing thus slaughtered by Yuyudhana, in battle, fled away fromYuyudhana’s car towards where Drona’s division was. Those (other)car-warriors also with whom Duhsasana had proceeded, all struck withpanic, similarly rushed to the spot where Drona’s car was seen.

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