Mahabharata Bhishma Parva Chapter 118

Mahabharata Bhishma Parva (Bhagavat-Gita Parva) Chapter 118

Sanjaya said,—"Sikhandin, O bull among men, approaching Bhishma in battle, struck him in the centre of the chest with ten broad-headed arrows The son of Ganga, however, O Bharata, only looked at Sikhandin with wrath and as if consuming the Panchala prince with that look. Remembering his femininity, O king, Bhishma, in the very sight of all, struck him not. Sikhandin, however, understood it not. Then Arjuna, O monarch, addressed Sikhandin, saying,—'Rush quickly and slay the grandsire. What needst thou say, O hero? Slay the mighty car-warrior Bhishma. I do not see any other warrior in Yudhishthira's army who is competent to fight with Bhishma in battle, save thee, O tiger among men. I say this truly.' Thus addressed by Partha, Sikhandin, O bull of Bharata's race, quickly covered the grandsire with diverse kinds of weapons. Disregarding those shafts, thy sire Devavrata began, with his shafts, to check the angry Arjuna only in that battle.

And that mighty car-warrior, O sire, began also to despatch, with his shafts of keen points, the whole army of the Pandavas to the other world. The Pandavas also, O king, after the same manner, supported by their vast host, began to overwhelm Bhishma like the clouds covering the maker of day. O bull of Bharata's race, surrounded on all sides, that Bharata hero consumed many brave warriors in that battle like a raging conflagration in the forest (consuming numberless trees). The prowess that we then beheld there of thy son (Dussasana) was wonderful, inasmuch as he battled with Partha and protected the grandsire at the same time. With that feat of thy son Dussasana, that illustrious bowman, all the people there were highly gratified. Alone he battled with all the Pandavas having Arjuna amongst them; and he fought with such vigour that the Pandavas were unable to resist him. Many car-warriors were in that battle deprived of their cars by Dussasana. And many mighty bowmen on horseback and many mighty-warriors, elephants, pierced with Dussasana's keen shafts, fell down on the earth. And many elephants, afflicted with his shafts, ran away in all directions. As a fire fiercely blazeth forth with bright flames when fed with fuel, so did thy son blaze forth, consuming the Pandava host. And no car-warrior, O Bharata, of the Pandava host ventured to vanquish or even proceed against that warrior of gigantic proportions, save Indra's son (Arjuna) owning white steeds and having Krishna for his charioteer.

Then Arjuna also called Vijaya, vanquishing Dussasana in battle, O king, in the very sight of all the troops, proceeded against Bhishma. Though vanquished, thy son, however, relying upon the might of Bhishma's arms, repeatedly comforted his own side and battled with the Pandavas with great fierceness. Arjuna, O king, fighting with his foes in that battle, looked exceedingly resplendent.[1] Then Sikhandin, in that battle, O king, pierced the grandsire with many arrows whose touch resembled that of the bolts of heaven and which were as fatal as the poison of the snake. These arrows, however, O monarch, caused thy sire little pain, for the son of Ganga received them laughingly. Indeed, as a person afflicted with heat cheerfully receives torrents of rain, even so did the son of Ganga received those arrows of Sikhandin. And the Kshatriyas there, O king, beheld Bhishma in that great battle as a being of fierce visage who was incessantly consuming the troops of the high-souled Pandavas.



  1. Both the Bengal and the Bombay texts read Arjunas in the second line of 21: The Burdwan Pundits are for correcting it as Arjunam. I do not think the correction happy.