Mahabharata Bhishma Parva Chapter 55:2

Mahabharata Bhishma Parva (Bhagavat-Gita Parva) Chapter 55:2

Neither the welkin, nor the cardinal points of the compass nor the earth, nor the sun, could be distinguished, O best of men, in consequence of the arrows shot by Kiritin.[1] And many were the elephants there deprived of the standards (on their backs), and many car-warriors also, deprived of their steeds. And some leaders of car divisions were seen wandering, having abandoned their cars. And other car-warriors, deprived of their cars, were seen to wander hither and thither, weapon in hand and their arms graced with Angadas. And riders of steeds abandoning their steeds and of elephants abandoning their elephants from fear of Arjuna, O king, fled away in all directions. And kings were seen felled or falling from cars and elephants and steeds in consequence of Arjuna's shafts. And Arjuna, assuming a fierce countenance, cut off with his terrible shafts, the upraised arms of warriors, mace in grasp, and arms bearing swords, O king, or darts, or quivers, or shafts, or bows, or hooks, or standards, all over the field. And spiked maces broken in fragments, and mallets, O sire, and bearded darts, and short arrows, and swords also, in that battle, and sharp-edged battle-axes, and lances, O Bharata, and shields broken into pieces, and coats of mail also, O king,[2] and standards, and weapons of all kinds thrown away and umbrellas furnished with golden staves, and iron hooks also, O Bharata, and goads and whips, and traces also, O sire, were seen strewn over the field of battle in heaps. There was no man in thy army, O sire, who could advance against the heroic Arjuna in battle. Whoever, O king, advanced against Pritha's son in battle, pierced by sharp shafts was despatched to the other world. When all these combatants of thine broke had fled away, Arjuna and Vasudeva blew their excellent conches.

Thy sire Devavrata then, beholding the (Kuru) host routed, smilingly addressed the heroic son of Bharadwaja in the battle and said, 'This mighty and heroic son of Pandu, viz., Dhananjaya, accompanied by Krishna, is dealing with (our) troops as he alone is competent to deal with them. He is incapable of being vanquished in battle today by any means, judging by his form that we see now so like unto that of the Destroyer himself at the end of the Yuga. This vast host again (of ours) is incapable of being rallied. Behold, looking at one another, our troops are flying away. Yon Sun, robbing in every way the vision of the whole world, is about to reach that best of mountains called Asta.[3] For this, O bull among men, I think that the hour is come for the withdrawal (of the army). The warriors, who have all been tired and struck with panic, will never fight.' Having said this unto Drona that best of preceptors, Bhishma, that mighty car-warrior, caused thy army to be withdrawn. And then when the sun set, the withdrawal of both thy army and theirs took place, O sire, and twilight set in.



  1. The sense is that all these were entirely shrouded by Arjuna's arrows.
  2. The true reading is Charmanam and not Varmanam: also bhumipa and bhutale.
  3. i.e., is about to set.