Mahabharata (English)

by Kisari Mohan Ganguli | 2,566,952 words | ISBN-10: 8121505933

The English translation of the Mahabharata is a large text describing ancient India. It is authored by Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa and contains the records of ancient humans. Also, it documents the fate of the Kauravas and the Pandavas family. Another part of the large contents, deal with many philosophical dialogues such as the goals of life. Book...

Section 22

"Sanjaya said, 'Many elephant-warriors riding on their beasts, urged by your son, proceeded against Dhrishtadyumna, filled with rage and desirous of compassing his destruction. Many foremost of combatants skilled in elephant-fight, belonging to the Easterners, the Southerners, the Angas, the Vangas, the Pundras, the Magadhas, the Tamraliptakas, the Mekalas, the Koshalas, the Madras, the Dasharnas, the Nishadas uniting with the Kalingas, O Bharata, and showering shafts and lances and arrows like pouring clouds, drenched the Pancala force therewith in that battle. Prishata’s son covered with his arrows and shafts those (foe-crushing) elephants urged forward by their riders with heels and toes and hooks. Each of those beasts that were huge as hills, the Pancala hero pierced with ten, eight, or six whetted shafts, O Bharata. Beholding the prince of the Pancalas shrouded by those elephants like the Sun by the clouds, the Pandus and the Pancalas proceeded towards him (for his rescue) uttering loud roars and armed with sharp weapons. Pouring their weapons upon those elephants, those warriors began to dance the dance of heroes, aided by the music of their bow-strings and the sound of their palms, and urged by heroes beating the time. Then Nakula and Sahadeva, and the sons of Draupadi, and the Prabhadrakas, and Satyaki, and Shikhandi, and Chekitana endued with great energy,—all those heroes—drenched those elephants from every side with their weapons, like the clouds drenching the hills with their showers. Those furious elephants, urged on by mleccha warriors dragging down with their trunks men and steeds and cars, crushed them with their feet. And some they pierced with the points of their tusks, and some they raised aloft and dashed down on the ground; others taken aloft on the tusks of those huge beasts, fell down inspiring spectators with fear. Then Satyaki, piercing the vitals of the elephant belonging to the king of the Vangas staying before him, with a long shaft endued with great impetuosity, caused it to fall down on the field of battle. Then Satyaki pierced with another long shaft the chest of the rider whom he could not hitherto touch, just as the latter was about to jump from the back of his beast. Thus struck by Satwata, he fell down on the Earth.

"'Meanwhile Sahadeva, with three shafts shot with great care, struck the elephant of Pundra, as it advanced against him like a moving mountain, depriving it of its standard and driver and armour and life. Having thus cut off that elephant, Sahadeva proceeded against the chief of the Angas.

"'Nakula, however, causing Sahadeva to desist, himself afflicted the ruler of the Angas with three long shafts, each resembling the rod of Yama, and his foe’s elephant with a hundred arrows. Then the ruler of the Angas hurled at Nakula eight hundred lances bright as the rays of the Sun. Each of these Nakula cut off into three fragments. The son of Pandu then cut off the head of his antagonist with a crescent-shaped arrow. At this that mleccha king, deprived of life, fell down with the animal he rode. Upon the fall of the prince of the Angas who was well-skilled in elephant-lore, the elephant-men of the Angas, filled with rage, proceeded with speed against Nakula, on their elephants decked with banners that waved in the air, possessing excellent mouths, adorned with housings of gold, and looking like blazing mountains, from desire of crushing him to pieces. And many Mekalas and Utkalas, and Kalingas, and Nishadas, and Tamraliptakas, also advanced against Nakula, showering their shafts and lances, desirous of slaying him. Then the Pandus, the Pancalas, and the Somakas, filled with rage, rushed with speed for the rescue of Nakula shrouded by those warriors like the Sun by the clouds. Then occurred a fierce battle between those car-warriors and elephant-men, the former showering their arrows and shafts the latter their lances by thousands. The frontal globes and other limbs and the tusks and adornments of the elephants, exceedingly pierced with shafts, were split and mangled. Then Sahadeva, with four and sixty impetuous arrows, quickly slew eight of those huge elephants which fell down with their riders. And Nakula also, that delighter of his race, bending his excellent bow with great vigour, with many straight shafts, slew many elephants. Then the Pancala prince, and the grandson of Sini (Satyaki) and the sons of Draupadi and the Prabhadrakas, and Shikhandi, drenched those huge elephants with showers of shafts. Then in consequence of those rain-charged clouds constituted by the Pandava warriors, those hills constituted by the elephants of the foe, fell, struck down by torrents of rain formed by their numerous shafts, like real mountains struck down with a thunder-storm. Those leaders of the Pandava car-warriors then, thus slaying those elephants of thine cast their eyes on the hostile army, which, as it fled away at that time resembled a river whose continents had been washed away. Those warriors of Pandu’s son, having thus agitated that army of thine, agitated it once more, and then rushed against Karna.'"


This concludes Section 22 of Book 8 of the Mahabharata, of which an English translation is presented on this page. This book is famous as one of the Itihasa, similair in content to the eighteen Puranas. is one of the eighteen books comprising roughly 100,000 Sanskrit metrical verses.

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