Chapter 162

Mahabharata English - DRONA PARVA

“Sanjaya said, ‘During the progress of that terrible nocturnalengagement, O king, which was fraught with an indiscriminate carnage,Dharma’s son Yudhishthira, addressed the Pandavas, the Panchalas, and theSomakas. Indeed, O king, for the destruction of men, cars, and elephants,king Yudhisthira commanded his own troops, saying, ‘Proceed ye againstDrona only, for slaying him!'[220] At the command of the king, O monarch,the Panchalas and the Somakas rushed against Drona alone, utteringterrible shouts. Ourselves excited with rage, and loudly roaring inreturn, rushed against them, to the best of our prowess, courage, andmight, in battle. Kritavarman, the son of Hridika, rushed againstYudhishthira, as the latter was advancing against Drona, like aninfuriated elephant against an infuriated compeer. Against Sini’sgrandson who advanced scattering arrowy showers all around, rushed, Oking, the Kuru warrior Bhuri, that grinder (of foes) in battle. Karna,the son of Vikartana, O king, resisted that mighty car-warrior, viz.,Pandu’s son, Sahadeva, as the letter advanced for getting at Drona. KingDuryodhana, in that battle, himself rushed against that foremost ofcar-warriors, viz., Bhimasena, advancing on his car like the Destroyer.Sakuni, the son of Suvala, O king, proceeding quickly, resisted thatforemost of warriors, viz., Nakula, who was conversant with every kind ofbattle. Kripa, the son of Saradwat, O king, resisted Sikhandin in thatbattle, that foremost of car-warrior, as the latter advanced on his car.Duhsasana, O king, contending vigorously, resisted Prativindhya as theletter advanced with resolution (on his car), drawn by steeds lookinglike peacocks. Aswatthaman, O monarch, resisted Bhimasena’s son, viz.,Rakshasa (Ghatotkacha) acquainted with a hundred kinds of illusion, asthe latter advanced. Vrishasena. in that battle resisted the mightyDrupada with his troops and followers as the latter advanced for gettingat Drona. The ruler of the Madras, O king, excited with wrath resistedVirata, O Bharata, as the latter quickly advanced for the slaughter ofDrona; Chitrasena, in that battle, resisted, with great force andshooting many shafts, Nakula’s son, Satanika, as the latter advanced forslaying Drona. The prince of the Rakshasas, viz., Alambhusha, O king,resisted Arjuna, that foremost of car-warriors, as the latter advanced.Dhrishtadyumna, the prince of the Panchalas, cheerfully resisted thegreat bowman Drona as the latter was engaged in slaughtering the foe. Asregards the mighty car-warriors of the Pandavas, that advanced (againstDrona), other car-warriors of thy army, O king, resisted them with greatforce. Elephant riders speedily encountering elephant riders in thatdreadful battle, began to fight, with each other and grind each other bythousands. At dead of night, O monarch, as the steeds rushed against eachother with impetuosity, they looked like winged hills. Horsemen, Omonarch, encountered horsemen, armed with lances and darts and swords,and uttering loud shouts. Large numbers of men slaughtered one another inheaps, with maces and short clubs and diverse other weapons. Kritavarman,the son of Hridika, excited with wrath, resisted Dharma’s son,Yudhishthira, like continents resisting the swelling sea. Yudhishthira,however, piercing Hridika’s son with five arrows, once more pierced himwith twenty, and addressing him, said, Wait, Wait.’ Then Kritavarman, Osire, excited with wrath, cut off with a broad-headed shaft, the bow ofking Yudhishthira the just and pierced the latter with seven arrows.Taking up another bow, that mighty car-warrior, viz., Dharma’s son,pierced the son of Hridika in the arms and chest with ten arrows. Thenthat warrior of Madhu’s race, thus pierced, O sire, by Dharma’s son inthat battle, trembled with rage and afflicted Yudhishthira with sevenshafts. Then Pritha’s son cutting off his enemy’s bow as also theleathern fence that cased his hands, sped at him five keen shafts whettedon stone. Those fierce shafts, piercing through the latter’s costlyarmour, decked with gold, entered the earth like snakes into an ant-hill.With the twinkling of an eye, Kritavarman, taking up another bow, piercedthe son of Pandu with sixty arrows and once more with ten. Ofimmeasurable soul, the son of Pandu, then placing his large bow on hiscar, sped at Kritavarman a dart resembling a snake. That dart decked withgold, shot by the son of Pandu, piercing through Kritavarman’s right arm,entered the earth. Meanwhile, Pritha’s son, taking up his formidable bow,shrouded the son of Hridika with showers of straight shafts. Then braveKritavarman, that great car-warrior among the Vrishnis, within less thanthe twinkling of an eye, made Yudhishthira steedless and driverless andcarless. Thereupon, the eldest son of Pandu took up a sword and a shield.Then he, of Madhu’s race, cut off both those weapons in that battle.Yudhishthira then, taking up a fierce lance, equipped with a gold-deckedstaff, quickly sped it, in that battle, at the illustrious son ofHridika. Hridika’s son, however, smiling the while, and displaying greatlightness of hand, cut off into two fragments that lance hurled from thearms of Yudhishthira, as it coursed impetuously towards him. He thencovered the son of Dharma with a hundred arrows in that encounter.Excited with wrath, he then cut off the latter’s coat of mail withshowers of shafts. Yudhishthira’s armour, decked with gold, cut off byHridika’s son with his shafts, dropped down from his body, O king, like acluster of stars dropping down from the firmament. His armour cut off,himself deprived of car and afflicted with the shafts of Kritavarman,Dharma’s son, Yudhishthira, quickly retreated from battle. The mightycar-warrior Kritavarman, then, having vanquished Yudhishthira, the son ofDharma, once more began to protect the wheel of Drona’s car.'”

Chapter 163
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