Virata Parva, Mahabharata/ Book IV Chapter 12

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Mahabharata - Virata Parva

Mahabharata Book IV Chapter 12: English


(Samayapalana Parva)

"Janamejaya said, 'While living thus disguised in the city of the Matsyas, what did those descendants of the Kuru race endued with great prowess, do, O regenerate one!'

"Vaisampayana said, 'Hear, O king, what those descendants of Kuru did while they dwelt thus in disguise in the city of the Matsyas, worshipping the king thereof. By the grace of the sage Trinavindu and of the high-souled lord of justice, the Pandavas continued to live unrecognised by others in the city of Virata. O lord of men, Yudhishthira, as courtier made himself agreeable to Virata and his sons as also to all the Matsyas. An adept in the mysteries of dice, the son of Pandu caused them to play at dice according to his pleasure and made them sit together in the dice-hall

p. 21

like a row of birds bound in a string. And that tiger among men, king Yudhishthira the Just, unknown to the monarch, distributed among his brothers, in due proportion, the wealth he won from Virata. And Bhimasena on his part, sold to Yudhishthira for price, meat and viands of various kinds which he obtained from the king. And Arjuna distributed among all his brothers the proceeds of worn-out cloths which he earned in the inner apartments of the palace. And Sahadeva, too, who was disguised as a cowherd gave milk, curds and clarified butter to his brothers. And Nakula also shared with his brothers the wealth the king gave him, satisfied with his management of the horses. And Draupadi, herself in a pitiable condition, looked after all those brothers and behaved in such a way as to remain unrecognized. And thus ministering unto one another's wants, those mighty warriors lived in the capital of Virata as hidden from view, as if they were once more in their mother's womb. And those lords of men, the sons of Pandu, apprehensive of danger from the son of Dhritarashtra, continued to dwell there in concealment, watching over their wife Draupadi. And after three months had passed away, in the fourth, the grand festival in honour of the divine Brahma which was celebrated with pomp in the country of the Matsyas, came off. And there came athletes from all quarters by thousands, like hosts of celestials to the abode of Brahma or of Shiva to witness that festival. And they were endued with huge bodies and great prowess, like the demons called Kalakhanjas. And elated with their prowess and proud of their strength, they were highly honoured by the king. And their shoulders and waists and necks were like those of lions, and their bodies were very clean, and their hearts were quite at ease. And they had many a time won success in the lists in the presence of kings. And amongst them there was one who towered above the rest and challenged them all to a combat. And there was none that dared to approach him as he proudly stalked in the arena. And when all the athletes stood sad and dispirited, the king of the Matsyas made him fight with his cook. And urged by the king, Bhima made up his mind reluctantly, for he could not openly disobey the royal behest. And that tiger among men then having worshipped the king, entered the spacious arena, pacing with the careless steps of a tiger. And the son of Kunti then girded up his loins to the great delight of the spectators. And Bhima then summoned to the combat that athlete known by the name of Jimuta who was like unto the Asura Vritra whose prowess was widely known. And both of them were possessed of great courage, and both were endued with terrible prowess. And they were like a couple of infuriate and huge-bodied elephants, each sixty years old. And those brave tigers among men then cheerfully engaged in a wrestling combat, desirous of vanquishing each other. And terrible was the encounter that took place between them, like the clash of the thunderbolt against the stony mountain-breast. And both of them were exceedingly powerful and extremely delighted at each other's strength. And desirous of vanquishing each other, each stood eager to

p. 22

take advantage of his adversary's lapse. And both were greatly delighted and both looked like infuriate elephants of prodigious size. And various were the modes of attack and defence that they exhibited with their clenched fists. 1 And each dashed against the other and flung his adversary to a distance. And each cast the other down and pressed him close to the ground. And each got up again and squeezed the other in his arms. And each threw the other violently off his place by boxing him on the breast. And each caught the other by the legs and whirling him round threw him down on the ground. And they slapped each other with their palms that struck as hard as the thunderbolt. And they also struck each other with their outstretched fingers, and stretching them out like spears thrust the nails into each other's body. And they gave each other violent kicks. And they struck knee and head against head, producing the crash of one stone against another. And in this manner that furious combat between those warriors raged on without weapons, sustained mainly by the power of their arms and their physical and mental energy, to the infinite delight of the concourse of spectators. And all people, O king, took deep interest in that encounter of those powerful wrestlers who fought like Indra and the Asura Vritra. And they cheered both of them with loud acclamations of applause. And the broad-chested and long-armed experts in wrestling then pulled and pressed and whirled and hurled down each other and struck each other with their knees, expressing all the while their scorn for each other in loud voices. And they began to fight with their bare arms in this way, which were like spiked maces of iron. And at last the powerful and mighty-armed Bhima, the slayer of his foes, shouting aloud seized the vociferous athlete by the arms even as the lion seizes the elephant, and taking him up from the ground and holding him aloft, began to whirl him round, to the great astonishment of the assembled athletes and the people of Matsya. And having whirled him round and round a hundred times till he was insensible, the strong-armed Vrikodara dashed him to death on the ground. And when the brave and renowned Jimuta was thus killed, Virata and his friends were filled with great delight. And in the exuberance of his joy, the noble-minded king rewarded Vallava then and there with the liberality of Kuvera. And killing numerous athletes and many other men possessed of great bodily strength, he pleased the king very much. And when no one could be found there to encounter him in the lists, the king made him fight with tigers and lions and elephants. And the king also made him battle with furious and powerful lions in the harem for the pleasure of the ladies. And Arjuna, too, pleased the king and all the ladies of the inner apartments by singing and dancing. And Nakula pleased Virata, that best of kings, by showing him fleet and well-trained steeds that followed him wherever he went.

p. 23

[paragraph continues] And the king, gratified with him, rewarded him with ample presents. And beholding around Sahadeva a herd of well-trained bullocks, Virata that bull among men, bestowed upon him also wealth of diverse kinds. And, O king, Draupadi distressed to see all those warriors suffer pain, sighed incessantly. And it was in this way that those eminent persons lived there in disguise, rendering services unto king Virata.'"


22:1 Krita--attack; Pratikrita--warding it off; Sankata--clenched Some texts read Sankatakais. The meaning then would be 'cased in gauntlets.'

Mahabharata Book IV Chapter 12: Sanskrit

  1 [जनम]
     एवं मत्स्यस्य नगरे वसन्तस तत्र पाण्डवाः
     अत ऊर्ध्वं महावीर्याः किम अकुर्वन्त वै थविज
 2 [वै]
     एवं ते नयवसंस तत्र परच्छन्नाः कुरुनन्थनाः
     आराधयन्तॊ राजानं यथ अकुर्वन्त तच छृणु
 3 युधिष्ठिरः सभास्तारः सभ्यानाम अभवत परियः
     तदैव च विराटस्य सपुत्रस्य विशां पते
 4 स हय अक्षहृथयज्ञस तान करीडयाम आस पाण्डवः
     अक्षवत्यां यदाकामं सूत्रबथ्धान इव थविजान
 5 अज्ञातं च विराटस्य विजित्य वसु धर्मराज
     भरातृभ्यः पुरुषव्याघ्रॊ यदार्हं सम परयच्छति
 6 भीमसेनॊ ऽपि मांसानि भक्ष्याणि विविधानि च
     अति सृष्टानि मत्स्येन विक्रीणाति युधिष्ठिरे
 7 वासांसि परिजीर्णानि लब्धान्य अन्तःपुरे ऽरजुनः
     विक्रीणानश च सर्वेभ्यः पाण्डवेभ्यः परयच्छति
 8 सहथेवॊ ऽपि गॊपानां वेषम आस्दाय पाण्डवः
     थधि कषीरं घृतं चैव पाण्डवेभ्यः परयच्छति
 9 नकुलॊ ऽपि धनं लब्ध्वा कृते कर्मणि वाजिनाम
     तुष्टे तस्मिन नरपतौ पाण्डवेभ्यः परयच्छति
 10 कृष्णापि सर्वान भरातॄंस तान निरीक्षन्ती तपस्विनी
    यदा पुनर अविज्ञाता तदा चरति भामिनी
11 एवं संपाथयन्तस ते तदान्यॊन्यं महारदाः
    परेक्षमाणास तथा कृष्णाम ऊषुश छन्ना नराधिप
12 अद मासे चतुर्दे तु बरह्मणः सुमहॊत्सवः
    आसीत समृथ्धॊ मत्स्येषु पुरुषाणां सुसंमतः
13 तत्र मल्लाः समापेतुर थिग्भ्यॊ राजन सहस्रशः
    महाकाया महावीर्याः कालखञ्जा इवासुराः
14 वीर्यॊन्नथ्धा बलॊथग्रा राज्ञा समभिपूजिताः
    सिन्ह सकन्धकटि गरीवाः सववथाता मनस्विनः
    असकृल लब्धलक्षास ते रङ्गे पार्दिव संनिधौ
15 तेषाम एकॊ महान आसीत सर्वमल्लान समाह्वयत
    आवल्गमानं तं रङ्गे नॊपतिष्ठति कश चन
16 यथा सर्वे विमनसस ते मल्ला हतचेतसः
    अद सूथेन तं मल्लं यॊधयाम आस मत्स्यराज
17 चॊथ्यमानस ततॊ भीमॊ थुःखेनैवाकरॊन मतिम
    न हि शक्नॊति विवृते परत्याख्यातुं नराधिपम
18 ततः स पुरुषव्याघ्रः शार्थूलशिदिलं चरन
    परविवेश महारङ्गं विराटम अभिहर्षयन
19 बबन्ध कक्ष्यां कौन्तेयस ततस्तं हर्षयञ जनम
    ततस तं वृत्र संकाशं भीमॊ मल्लं समाह्वयत
20 ताव उभौ सुमहॊत्साहाव उभौ तीव्रपराक्रमौ
    मत्ताव इव महाकायौ वारणौ षष्टिहायनौ
21 चकर्ष थॊर्भ्याम उत्पाट्य भीमॊ मल्लम अमित्रहा
    विनथन्तम अभिक्रॊशञ शार्थूल इव वारणम
22 तम उथ्यम्य महाबाहुर भरामयाम आस वीर्यवान
    ततॊ मल्लाश च मत्स्याश च विस्मयं चक्रिरे परम
23 भरामयित्वा शतगुणं गतसत्त्वम अचेतनम
    परत्यापिंषन महाबाहुर मल्लं भुवि वृकॊथरः
24 तस्मिन विनिहते मल्ले जीमूते लॊकविश्रुते
    विराटः परमं हर्षम अगच्छथ बान्धवैः सह
25 संहर्षात परथथौ वित्तं बहु राजा महामनः
    बल्लवाय महारङ्गे यदा वैश्रवणस तदा
26 एवं स सुबहून मल्लान पुरुषांश च महाबलान
    विनिघ्नन मत्स्यराजस्य परीतिम आवहथ उत्तमाम
27 यथास्य तुल्यः पुरुषॊ न कश चित तत्र विथ्यते
    ततॊ वयाघ्रैश च सिंहैश च थविरथैश चाप्य अयॊधयत
28 पुनर अन्तःपुर गतः सत्रीणां मध्ये वृकॊथरः
    यॊध्यते सम विराटेण सिंहैर मत्तैर महाबलैः
29 बीभत्सुर अपि गीतेन सुनृत्तेन च पाण्डवः
    विराटं तॊषयाम आस सर्वाश चान्तःपुर सत्रियः
30 अश्वैर विनीतैर जवनैस तत्र तत्र समागतैः
    तॊषयाम आस नकुलॊ राजानं राजसत्तम
31 तस्मै परथेयं परायच्छत परीतॊ राजा धनं बहु
    विनीतान वृषभान थृष्ट्वा सहथेवस्य चाभिभॊ
32 एवं ते नयवसंस तत्र परच्छन्नाः पुरुषर्षभाः
    कर्माणि तस्य कुर्वाणा विराट नृपतेस तथा

Mahabharata Book IV Chapter 12: Transliteration

 1 [janam]
     evaṃ matsyasya nagare vasantas tatra pāṇḍavāḥ
     ata ūrdhvaṃ mahāvīryāḥ kim akurvanta vai dvija
 2 [vai]
     evaṃ te nyavasaṃs tatra pracchannāḥ kurunandanāḥ
     ārādhayanto rājānaṃ yad akurvanta tac chṛṇu
 3 yudhiṣṭhiraḥ sabhāstāraḥ sabhyānām abhavat priyaḥ
     tathaiva ca virāṭasya saputrasya viśāṃ pate
 4 sa hy akṣahṛdayajñas tān krīḍayām āsa pāṇḍavaḥ
     akṣavatyāṃ yathākāmaṃ sūtrabaddhān iva dvijān
 5 ajñātaṃ ca virāṭasya vijitya vasu dharmarāj
     bhrātṛbhyaḥ puruṣavyāghro yathārhaṃ sma prayacchati
 6 bhīmaseno 'pi māṃsāni bhakṣyāṇi vividhāni ca
     ati sṛṣṭāni matsyena vikrīṇāti yudhiṣṭhire
 7 vāsāṃsi parijīrṇāni labdhāny antaḥpure 'rjunaḥ
     vikrīṇānaś ca sarvebhyaḥ pāṇḍavebhyaḥ prayacchati
 8 sahadevo 'pi gopānāṃ veṣam āsthāya pāṇḍavaḥ
     dadhi kṣīraṃ ghṛtaṃ caiva pāṇḍavebhyaḥ prayacchati
 9 nakulo 'pi dhanaṃ labdhvā kṛte karmaṇi vājinām
     tuṣṭe tasmin narapatau pāṇḍavebhyaḥ prayacchati
 10 kṛṣṇāpi sarvān bhrātṝṃs tān nirīkṣantī tapasvinī
    yathā punar avijñātā tathā carati bhāminī
11 evaṃ saṃpādayantas te tathānyonyaṃ mahārathāḥ
    prekṣamāṇās tadā kṛṣṇām ūṣuś channā narādhipa
12 atha māse caturthe tu brahmaṇaḥ sumahotsavaḥ
    āsīt samṛddho matsyeṣu puruṣāṇāṃ susaṃmataḥ
13 tatra mallāḥ samāpetur digbhyo rājan sahasraśaḥ
    mahākāyā mahāvīryāḥ kālakhañjā ivāsurāḥ
14 vīryonnaddhā balodagrā rājñā samabhipūjitāḥ
    sinha skandhakaṭi grīvāḥ svavadātā manasvinaḥ
    asakṛl labdhalakṣās te raṅge pārthiva saṃnidhau
15 teṣām eko mahān āsīt sarvamallān samāhvayat
    āvalgamānaṃ taṃ raṅge nopatiṣṭhati kaś cana
16 yadā sarve vimanasas te mallā hatacetasaḥ
    atha sūdena taṃ mallaṃ yodhayām āsa matsyarāj
17 codyamānas tato bhīmo duḥkhenaivākaron matim
    na hi śaknoti vivṛte pratyākhyātuṃ narādhipam
18 tataḥ sa puruṣavyāghraḥ śārdūlaśithilaṃ caran
    praviveśa mahāraṅgaṃ virāṭam abhiharṣayan
19 babandha kakṣyāṃ kaunteyas tatastaṃ harṣayañ janam
    tatas taṃ vṛtra saṃkāśaṃ bhīmo mallaṃ samāhvayat
20 tāv ubhau sumahotsāhāv ubhau tīvraparākramau
    mattāv iva mahākāyau vāraṇau ṣaṣṭihāyanau
21 cakarṣa dorbhyām utpāṭya bhīmo mallam amitrahā
    vinadantam abhikrośañ śārdūla iva vāraṇam
22 tam udyamya mahābāhur bhrāmayām āsa vīryavān
    tato mallāś ca matsyāś ca vismayaṃ cakrire param
23 bhrāmayitvā śataguṇaṃ gatasattvam acetanam
    pratyāpiṃṣan mahābāhur mallaṃ bhuvi vṛkodaraḥ
24 tasmin vinihate malle jīmūte lokaviśrute
    virāṭaḥ paramaṃ harṣam agacchad bāndhavaiḥ saha
25 saṃharṣāt pradadau vittaṃ bahu rājā mahāmanaḥ
    ballavāya mahāraṅge yathā vaiśravaṇas tathā
26 evaṃ sa subahūn mallān puruṣāṃś ca mahābalān
    vinighnan matsyarājasya prītim āvahad uttamām
27 yadāsya tulyaḥ puruṣo na kaś cit tatra vidyate
    tato vyāghraiś ca siṃhaiś ca dviradaiś cāpy ayodhayat
28 punar antaḥpura gataḥ strīṇāṃ madhye vṛkodaraḥ
    yodhyate sma virāṭeṇa siṃhair mattair mahābalaiḥ
29 bībhatsur api gītena sunṛttena ca pāṇḍavaḥ
    virāṭaṃ toṣayām āsa sarvāś cāntaḥpura striyaḥ
30 aśvair vinītair javanais tatra tatra samāgataiḥ
    toṣayām āsa nakulo rājānaṃ rājasattama
31 tasmai pradeyaṃ prāyacchat prīto rājā dhanaṃ bahu
    vinītān vṛṣabhān dṛṣṭvā sahadevasya cābhibho
32 evaṃ te nyavasaṃs tatra pracchannāḥ puruṣarṣabhāḥ
    karmāṇi tasya kurvāṇā virāṭa nṛpates tadā


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