Bhisma Parva, Mahabharata/Book VI Chapter 83

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Mahabharata - Bhisma Parva

Mahabharata Book VI Chapter 83: English


describes the array of the Kauravas army against the Pandavas in Mahabharata War

Sanjaya said, "Having passed the night in sound steep, those rulers of men, the Kauravas and the Pandavas, once more proceeded to battle. And when the troops of both armies were about to proceed to the field, great was the uproar heard there, resembling the loud uproar of the ocean itself. Then king Duryodhana, and Chitrasena, and Vivinsati, and that foremost of car-warriors, viz., Bhishma and Bharadwaja's son possessed of great prowess,--those mighty car-warriors, clad in mail and uniting together, O King, formed with great care the array of the Kauravas against the Pandavas.

Having formed that mighty array fierce as the ocean and having for its billows and current its steeds and elephants, thy sire Bhishma, the son of Santanu, then, O king, proceeded in the van of the whole army, supported by the Malavas, and the inhabitants of the southern countries, and the Avantis.

Next to him was the valiant son of Bharadwaja, accompanied by the Pulindas, the Paradas, and the Kshudraka-Malavas.

Next to Drona was the valiant Bhagadatta. O king, firmly resolved on fight, accompanied by the Magadhas, the Kalingas, and the Pisachas.

Behind Bhagadatta was Vrihadvala the king of the Kosalas accompanied by the Mekalas, the Tripuras, and the Chichhilas.

Next to Vrihadvala was the brave Trigarta, the ruler of the Prasthala, accompanied by a large number of the Kambojas, and by Yavanas in thousands.

Next to the ruler of the Trigartas, O Bharata, proceeded that mighty hero, viz., the son of Drona, uttering leonine roars and filling the earth with those shouts.

Next to Drona's son proceeded king Duryodhana with the whole army, surrounded by his uterine brothers.

Behind Duryodhana proceeded Kripa the son of Saradwat. It was thus that that mighty array, resembling the very ocean, advanced [p. 218]: [paragraph continues] (to battle). And standards and white umbrellas, O lord, and beautiful bracelets and costly bows shed their effulgence there.

And beholding that mighty array of thy forces, that great car-warrior Yudhishthira, speedily addressed the generalissimo (of his forces), viz., Prishata's son saying, 'Behold, O great bowman, that array, already formed, resembling the ocean. Do thou also, O son of Prishata, form without delay thy counter-array. (Thus addressed), the heroic son of Prishata, O great king, formed that terrible array called Sringataka that is destructive of all hostile arrays. At the horns were Bhimasena and that mighty car-warrior, viz., Satyaki, with many thousands of cars as also of horse and infantry.

Next to them was that foremost of men, (viz., Arjuna) of white steeds and having Krishna for his charioteer. 1 In the centre were king Yudhishthira and the twin sons of Pandu by Madri.

Other royal bowmen, conversant with the science of arrays, with their troops, filled up that array. In the rear were ordered Abhimanyu, and that mighty car-warrior, Virata, and the sons of Draupadi and the Rakshasa Ghatotkacha.

Thus, O Bharata, having formed their mighty array, the heroic Pandavas waited on the field, longing for battle and desirous of victory.

And the loud noise of drums mingling with the blare of conches and leonine roars and shouts (of the combatants) and the slapping of their armpits, became terrible and filled all the points of the compass. Then those brave warriors, approaching one another for battle, looked at one another, O king, with winkless eyes. Then O ruler of men, the warriors, first challenging each other by name, engaged with each other. 2 Then commenced a fierce and terrible battle between thy troops and those of the foe striking one another. And in that battle, O Bharata, whetted shafts fell in showers like terrible snakes with mouths wide open. And polished darts of impetuous force, washed with oil, O king, shone like the effulgent flashes of lightning from the clouds. And maces decked with gold and attached to bright slings were seen to fall all over the field, resembling beautiful crests of hills. And sabres of the colour of the clear (blue) sky, O Bharata, and shields of bull's hides and decked with a hundred moons, as they fell everywhere over the field, O king, looked beautiful. And as the two armies, O king, were engaged in battle with each other, they looked resplendent like the celestial and the demoniac hosts battling with each other. All around they rushed against one another in battle. Foremost of royal car-warriors, impetuously dashing against car-warriors in that dreadful battle, fought on, with the yokes of their cars entangled with those of their adversaries. And, O bull of Bharata's race, all over the field flashes of fire mixed with smoke were generated, in consequence of friction, in the tusks of battling elephants. And combatants on the backs of elephants, struck with lances, were seen all around to fall down like blocks (loosened)

p. 219

from crests of hills. 1 And brave foot-soldiers, battling with their bare arms or with lances, and striking one another, looked exceedingly beautiful. And the warriors of the Kaurava and the Pandava hosts, coming upon one another in that conflict, despatched one another with diverse kinds of shafts to the abode of Yama. Then Bhishma, the son of Santanu, filling (the air) with the rattle of his car, and depriving the foe of his senses by the twang of his bow, rushed against the Pandavas in battle. The car-warriors of the Pandavas, too, headed by Dhrishtadyumna, uttering fierce shouts, rushed at him, firmly resolved on fight. Then commenced, O Bharata, a battle between the infantry, car-warriors, and elephants, of theirs and thine, in which the combatants became all entangled with one another."


218:1 Krishna-sarathis (Bombay); the Bengal reading is Vanaradhvajas.

218:2 The true reading, I think, is that of the Bombay text, viz., namabhis. The Bengal reading is manobhis. How can persons challenge each other mentally, although they may single out their antagonists so?

Mahabharata Book VI Chapter 83: Sanskrit

1  [स]
     परिणाम्य निशां तां तु सुखसुप्ता जनेश्वराः
     कुरवः पाण्डवाश चैव पुनर युथ्धाय निर्ययुः
 2 ततः शब्थॊ महान आसीत सेनयॊर उभयॊर अपि
     निर्गच्छमानयॊर संख्ये सागरप्रतिमॊ महान
 3 ततॊ थुर्यॊधनॊ राजा चित्रसेनॊ विविंशतिः
     भीष्मश च रदिनां शरेष्ठॊ भारथ्वाजश च वै थविजः
 4 एकीभूताः सुसंयत्ताः कौरवाणां महाचमूः
     वयूहाय विथधू राजन पाण्डवान परति थंशिताः
 5 भीष्मः कृत्वा महाव्यूहं पिता तव विशां पते
     सागरप्रतिमं घॊरं वाहनॊर्मितरङ्गिणम
 6 अग्रतः सर्वसैन्यानां भीष्मः शांतनवॊ ययौ
     मालवैर थाक्षिणात्यैश च आवन्त्यैश च समन्वितः
 7 ततॊ ऽनन्तरम एवासीथ भारथ्वाजः परतापवान
     पुलिन्दै: पारदैश चैव तदा क्षुद्रकमालवैः
 8 थरॊणाथ अनन्तरं यत्तॊ भगथत्तः परतापवान
     मागधैशकलिङ्गैशपिशाचैश च विशां पते
 9 पराग्ज्यॊतिषाथ अनु नृपः कौसल्यॊ ऽद बृहथ्बलः
     मेकलैस त्रैपुरैश चैव चिच्छिलैश च समन्वितः
 10 बृहथ्बलात ततः शूरस तरिगर्तः परस्दलाधिपः
    काम्बॊजैर बहुभिः सार्धं यवनैश च सहस्रशः
11 थरौणिस तु रभसः शूरस तरिगर्ताथ अनु भारत
    परययौ सिंहनाथेन नाथयानॊ धरातलम
12 तदा सर्वेण सैन्येन राजा थुर्यॊधनस तथा
    थरौणेर अनन्तरं परायात सॊथर्यैः परिवारितः
13 थुर्यॊधनाथ अनु कृपस ततः शारथ्वतॊ ययौ
    एवम एष महाव्यूहः परययौ सागरॊपमः
14 रेजुस तत्र पताकाश च शवेतच छत्राणि चाभिभॊ
    अङ्गथान्य अद चित्राणि महार्हाणि धनूंषि च
15 तं तु थृष्ट्वा महाव्यूहं तावकानां महारदः
    युधिष्ठिरॊ ऽबरवीत तूर्णं पार्षतं पृतना पतिम
16 पश्य वयूहं महेष्वास निर्मितं सागरॊपमम
    परतिव्यूहं तवम अपि हि कुरु पार्षत माचिरम
17 ततः स पार्षतः शूरॊ वयूहं चक्रे सुथारुणम
    शृङ्गाटलं महाराज परव्यूहविनाशनम
18 शृङ्गेभ्यॊ भीमसेनश च सात्यक्तिश च महारदः
    रदैर अनेकसाहस्रैस तदा हयपथातिभिः
19 नाभ्याम अभून नरश्रेष्ठः शवेताश्वॊ वानरध्वजः
    मध्ये युधिष्ठिरॊ राजा माथ्रीपुत्रौ च पाण्डवौ
20 अदेतरे महेष्वासाः सह सैन्या नराधिपाः
    वयूहं तं पूरयाम आसुर वयूह शास्त्रविशारथाः
21 अभिमन्युस ततः पश्चाथ विराटश च महारदः
    थरौपथेयाश च संहृष्टा राक्षसश च घटॊत्कचः
22 एवम एतं महाव्यूहं वयूह्य भारत पाण्डवाः
    अतिष्ठन समरे शूरा यॊथ्धुकामा जयैषिणः
23 भेरीशब्थाश च तुमुला विमिश्राः शङ्खनिस्वनैः
    कष्वेडितास्फॊटितॊत्क्रुष्टैः सुभीमाः सर्वतॊथिशम
24 ततः शूराः समासाथ्य समरे ते परस्परम
    नेत्रैर अनिमिशै राजन्न अवैक्षन्त परकॊपिताः
25 मनॊभिस ते मनुष्येन्थ्र पूर्वं यॊधाः परस्परम
    युथ्धाय समवर्तन्त समाहूयेतरेतरम
26 ततः परववृते युथ्धं घॊररूपं भयावहम
    तावकानां परेषां च निघ्नताम इतरेतरम
27 नाराचा निशिताः संख्ये संपतन्ति सम भारत
    वयात्तानना भयकरा उरगा इव संघशः
28 निष्पेतुर विमलाः शक्त्यस तैलधौताः सुतेजनाः
    अम्बुथेभ्यॊ यदा राजन भराजमानाः शतह्रथाह
29 गथाश च विमलैः पट्टैः पिनथ्धाः सवर्णभूषिताः
    पतन्त्यस तत्र थृश्यन्ते गिरिशृङ्गॊपमाः शुभाः
    निस्त्रिंशाश च वयराजन्त विमलाम्बरसंनिभाः
30 आर्षभाणि च चर्माणि शतचन्थ्राणि भारत
    अशॊभन्त रणे राजन पतमानानि सर्वशः
31 ते ऽनयॊन्यं समरे सेने युध्यमाने नराधिप
    अशॊभेतां यदा थैत्य थेव सेने समुथ्यते
    अभ्यथ्रवन्त समरे ते ऽनयॊन्यं वै समन्ततः
32 रदास तु रदिभिस तूर्णं परेषिताः परमाहवे
    युगैर युगानि संश्लिष्य युयुधुः पार्दिवर्षभाः
33 थन्तिनां युध्यमानानां संघर्षात पावकॊ ऽभवत
    थन्तेषु भरतश्रेष्ठ स धूमः सर्वतॊथिशम
34 परासैर अभिहताः के चिथ गजयॊधाः समन्ततः
    पतमानाः सम थृश्यन्ते गिरिशृङ्गान नगा इव
35 पाथाताश चाप्य अथृश्यन्त निघ्नन्तॊ हि परस्परम
    चित्ररूपधराः शूरा नखरप्रासयॊधिनः
36 अन्यॊन्यं ते समासाथ्य कुरुपाण्डवसैनिकाः
    शस्त्रैर नानाविधैर घॊरै रणे निन्युर यमक्षयम
37 ततः शांतनवॊ भीष्मॊ रदघॊषेण नाथयन
    अभ्यागमथ रणे पाण्डून धनुः शब्थेन मॊहयन
38 पाण्डवानां रदाश चापि नथन्तॊ भैरवस्वनम
    अभ्यथ्रवन्त संयत्ता धृष्टथ्युम्नपुरॊगमाः
39 ततः परववृते युथ्धं तव तेषां च भारत
    नराश्वरदनागानां वयतिषक्तं परस्परम

Mahabharata Book VI Chapter 83: Transliteration

 1 [s]
     pariṇāmya niśāṃ tāṃ tu sukhasuptā janeśvarāḥ
     kuravaḥ pāṇḍavāś caiva punar yuddhāya niryayuḥ
 2 tataḥ śabdo mahān āsīt senayor ubhayor api
     nirgacchamānayor saṃkhye sāgarapratimo mahān
 3 tato duryodhano rājā citraseno viviṃśatiḥ
     bhīṣmaś ca rathināṃ śreṣṭho bhāradvājaś ca vai dvijaḥ
 4 ekībhūtāḥ susaṃyattāḥ kauravāṇāṃ mahācamūḥ
     vyūhāya vidadhū rājan pāṇḍavān prati daṃśitāḥ
 5 bhīṣmaḥ kṛtvā mahāvyūhaṃ pitā tava viśāṃ pate
     sāgarapratimaṃ ghoraṃ vāhanormitaraṅgiṇam
 6 agrataḥ sarvasainyānāṃ bhīṣmaḥ śāṃtanavo yayau
     mālavair dākṣiṇātyaiś ca āvantyaiś ca samanvitaḥ
 7 tato 'nantaram evāsīd bhāradvājaḥ pratāpavān
     pulindaiḥ pāradaiś caiva tathā kṣudrakamālavaiḥ
 8 droṇād anantaraṃ yatto bhagadattaḥ pratāpavān
     māgadhaiś ca kaliṅgaiś ca piśācaiś ca viśāṃ pate
 9 prāgjyotiṣād anu nṛpaḥ kausalyo 'tha bṛhadbalaḥ
     mekalais traipuraiś caiva cicchilaiś ca samanvitaḥ
 10 bṛhadbalāt tataḥ śūras trigartaḥ prasthalādhipaḥ
    kāmbojair bahubhiḥ sārdhaṃ yavanaiś ca sahasraśaḥ
11 drauṇis tu rabhasaḥ śūras trigartād anu bhārata
    prayayau siṃhanādena nādayāno dharātalam
12 tathā sarveṇa sainyena rājā duryodhanas tadā
    drauṇer anantaraṃ prāyāt sodaryaiḥ parivāritaḥ
13 duryodhanād anu kṛpas tataḥ śāradvato yayau
    evam eṣa mahāvyūhaḥ prayayau sāgaropamaḥ
14 rejus tatra patākāś ca śvetac chatrāṇi cābhibho
    aṅgadāny atha citrāṇi mahārhāṇi dhanūṃṣi ca
15 taṃ tu dṛṣṭvā mahāvyūhaṃ tāvakānāṃ mahārathaḥ
    yudhiṣṭhiro 'bravīt tūrṇaṃ pārṣataṃ pṛtanā patim
16 paśya vyūhaṃ maheṣvāsa nirmitaṃ sāgaropamam
    prativyūhaṃ tvam api hi kuru pārṣata māciram
17 tataḥ sa pārṣataḥ śūro vyūhaṃ cakre sudāruṇam
    śṛṅgāṭalaṃ mahārāja paravyūhavināśanam
18 śṛṅgebhyo bhīmasenaś ca sātyaktiś ca mahārathaḥ
    rathair anekasāhasrais tathā hayapadātibhiḥ
19 nābhyām abhūn naraśreṣṭhaḥ śvetāśvo vānaradhvajaḥ
    madhye yudhiṣṭhiro rājā mādrīputrau ca pāṇḍavau
20 athetare maheṣvāsāḥ saha sainyā narādhipāḥ
    vyūhaṃ taṃ pūrayām āsur vyūha śāstraviśāradāḥ
21 abhimanyus tataḥ paścād virāṭaś ca mahārathaḥ
    draupadeyāś ca saṃhṛṣṭā rākṣasaś ca ghaṭotkacaḥ
22 evam etaṃ mahāvyūhaṃ vyūhya bhārata pāṇḍavāḥ
    atiṣṭhan samare śūrā yoddhukāmā jayaiṣiṇaḥ
23 bherīśabdāś ca tumulā vimiśrāḥ śaṅkhanisvanaiḥ
    kṣveḍitāsphoṭitotkruṣṭaiḥ subhīmāḥ sarvatodiśam
24 tataḥ śūrāḥ samāsādya samare te parasparam
    netrair animiśai rājann avaikṣanta prakopitāḥ
25 manobhis te manuṣyendra pūrvaṃ yodhāḥ parasparam
    yuddhāya samavartanta samāhūyetaretaram
26 tataḥ pravavṛte yuddhaṃ ghorarūpaṃ bhayāvaham
    tāvakānāṃ pareṣāṃ ca nighnatām itaretaram
27 nārācā niśitāḥ saṃkhye saṃpatanti sma bhārata
    vyāttānanā bhayakarā uragā iva saṃghaśaḥ
28 niṣpetur vimalāḥ śaktyas tailadhautāḥ sutejanāḥ
    ambudebhyo yathā rājan bhrājamānāḥ śatahradāh
29 gadāś ca vimalaiḥ paṭṭaiḥ pinaddhāḥ svarṇabhūṣitāḥ
    patantyas tatra dṛśyante giriśṛṅgopamāḥ śubhāḥ
    nistriṃśāś ca vyarājanta vimalāmbarasaṃnibhāḥ
30 ārṣabhāṇi ca carmāṇi śatacandrāṇi bhārata
    aśobhanta raṇe rājan patamānāni sarvaśaḥ
31 te 'nyonyaṃ samare sene yudhyamāne narādhipa
    aśobhetāṃ yathā daitya deva sene samudyate
    abhyadravanta samare te 'nyonyaṃ vai samantataḥ
32 rathās tu rathibhis tūrṇaṃ preṣitāḥ paramāhave
    yugair yugāni saṃśliṣya yuyudhuḥ pārthivarṣabhāḥ
33 dantināṃ yudhyamānānāṃ saṃgharṣāt pāvako 'bhavat
    danteṣu bharataśreṣṭha sa dhūmaḥ sarvatodiśam
34 prāsair abhihatāḥ ke cid gajayodhāḥ samantataḥ
    patamānāḥ sma dṛśyante giriśṛṅgān nagā iva
35 pādātāś cāpy adṛśyanta nighnanto hi parasparam
    citrarūpadharāḥ śūrā nakharaprāsayodhinaḥ
36 anyonyaṃ te samāsādya kurupāṇḍavasainikāḥ
    śastrair nānāvidhair ghorai raṇe ninyur yamakṣayam
37 tataḥ śāṃtanavo bhīṣmo rathaghoṣeṇa nādayan
    abhyāgamad raṇe pāṇḍūn dhanuḥ śabdena mohayan
38 pāṇḍavānāṃ rathāś cāpi nadanto bhairavasvanam
    abhyadravanta saṃyattā dhṛṣṭadyumnapurogamāḥ
39 tataḥ pravavṛte yuddhaṃ tava teṣāṃ ca bhārata
    narāśvarathanāgānāṃ vyatiṣaktaṃ parasparam