Chapter 39

Mahabharata English - DRONA PARVA

“Sanjaya said, ‘Then the younger brother of Karna, uttering loud roars,bow in hand, and repeatedly stretching the bow-string, quickly placedhimself between those two illustrious warriors. And Karna’s brother, withten shafts, pierced invincible Abhimanyu and his umbrella and standardand charioteer and steeds, smiling the while. Beholding Abhimanyu thusafflicted with those arrows, although he had achieved those superhumanfeats in the manner of his sire and grandsire, the warriors of thy armywere filled with delight. Then Abhimanyu, forcibly bending the bow andsmiling the while, with one winged arrow cut off his antagonist’s head.That head, severed from the trunk, fell down on the earth. Beholding hisbrother slain and overthrown, like a Karnikara tree shaken and throwndown by the wind from the mountain top, Karna, O monarch, was filled withpain. Meanwhile, the son of Subhadra, causing Karna by means of hisarrows to turn away from the field, quickly rushed against the othergreat bowmen. Then Abhimanyu of fierce energy and great fame, filled withwrath, broke that host of diverse forces abounding with elephants andsteeds and cars and infantry. As regards Karna, afflicted by Abhimanyuwith countless shafts, he fled away from the field borne by swift steeds.The Kaurava array then broke. When the welkin was covered withAbhimanyu’s shafts, like flights of locusts or thick showers of rain,nothing, O monarch, could be distinguished. Amongst thy warriors thusslaughtered by Abhimanyu with sharp shafts, none, O monarch, stayed anylonger on the field of battle except the ruler of the Sindhus. Then thatbull among men, viz., the son of Subhadra, blowing his conch, speedily,fell upon the Bharata host, O bull of Bharata’s race! Like a burningbrand thrown into the midst of dry grass, Arjuna’s son began to consumehis foes, quickly careering through the Kaurava army. Having piercedthrough their array, he mangled cars and elephants and steeds and humanbeings by means of his sharp shafts and caused the field of battle teemwith headless trunks. Cut off by means of excellent arrows shot from thebow of Subhadra’s son, the Kaurava warriors fled away, slaying, as theyfled, their own comrades before them. Those fierce arrows, of terribleeffect whetted on stone and, countless in number, slaying car-warriorsand elephants, steeds, fell fast on the field. Arms, decked with Angadasand other ornaments of gold, cut off and hands cased in leathern covers,and arrows, and bows, and bodies and heads decked with car-rings andfloral wreaths, lay in thousands on the field. Obstructed with Upashkarasand Adhishthanas and long poles also with crushed Akshas and brokenwheels and yokes, numbering thousands, With darts and bows and swords andfallen standards, and with shields and bows lying all about, with thebodies, O monarch, of slain Kshatriyas and steeds and elephants, thefield of battle, looking exceedingly fierce, soon became impassable. Thenoise made by the princes, as they called upon One another whileslaughtered by Abhimanyu, became deafening and enhanced the fears of thetimid. That noise, O chief of the Bharatas, filled all the points of thecompass. The son of Subhadra, rushed against the (Kaurava) troops,slaying foremost of car-warriors and steeds and elephants, Quicklyconsuming his foes, like a fire playing in the midst of a heap of drygrass, the son of Arjuna was seen careering through the midst of theBharata army. Encompassed as he was by our troops and covered with dust,none of us could obtain a sight of that warrior when, O Bharata, he wascareening over the field in all directions, cardinal and subsidiary. Andhe took the lives of steeds and elephants and human warriors, O Bharata,almost incessantly. And soon after we saw him (come out of the press).Indeed, O monarch, we beheld him then scorching his foes like themeridian sun (scorching everything with his rays). Equal to Vasavahimself in battle, that son of Vasava’s son viz., Abhimanyu, lookedresplendent in the midst of the (hostile) army.'”

Chapter 40
Chapter 38
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