Damayanti's living in the house of the King of the Chedis

बृहदश्व उवाच सा तच्छ्रुत्वानवद्याङ्गी सार्थवाहवचस्तदा। जगाम सह तेनैव सार्थेन पतिलालसा॥
Brihadashva said: Thereupon that beauteous lady, hearing the words of the leader of the caravan, went away with the company of travellers, hoping to find out her lord.

अथ काले बहुतिथे वने महति दारुणे। तडागं सर्वतोभद्रं पद्मसौगन्धिकं महत्॥ ददृशुर्वणिजो रम्यं प्रभूतयवसेन्धनम्। बहुपुष्पफलोपेतं नानापक्षिनिषेवितम्॥ निर्मलस्वादुसलिलं मनोहारि सुशीतलम्। सुपरिश्रान्तवाहास्ते निवेशाय मनो दधुः॥
Thus many days passed over, when the merchants saw in the midst of that fearful and extensive forest a very large lake, which was all-beautiful, pregnant with lotuses, most delight-some, containing abundant grasses and fuels and also various sorts of delicious fruits and flowers (on its banks) and inhabited by several kinds of birds; and also finding the water of the lake to be pure and tasteful, most charming and cool, these tired traverllers made up their mind up stop there.

सम्मते सार्थवाहस्य विविशुर्वनमुत्तमम्। उवास सार्थः सुमहान् वेलामासाद्य पश्चिमाम्॥
The caravan dispersed itself into the forest at the behest of its leader. But when the day (i.e., the sun) slanted down the west, that great company took its quarters there.

अथार्धरात्रसमये नि:शब्दस्तिमिते तदा। सुप्ते सार्थे परिश्रान्ते हस्तियूथमुपागमत्॥ पानीपार्थं गिरिनदीं मदप्रस्रवणाविलाम्। अथापश्यत सार्थं तं सार्थजान् सुबहून् गजान्॥
Then, at midnight, when cverything was hushed and silence prevailed, the travellers fell into sleep, while there came a multitude of elephants. And while going to the mountain stream to drink its water, soiled by their own exudations, they saw the merchants as well as a good number of other elephants possessed by them.

तान् चाम्यगजान् दृष्ट्वा सर्वे वनगजास्तदा। समाद्रवन्त वेगेन जिघांसन्तो मदोत्कटाः॥
Beholding those domesticated elephants, the wild ones, maddened at the fury, rushed towards them with the object of killing them, while the juice was exuding from their temples.

तेषामापततां वेग: करिणां दुःसहोऽभवत्। नगाचादिव शीर्णानां शृङ्गाणां पततां क्षितौ।॥
The violence of the forward rush of these elephants became intolerable, even as the fall of the peaks, broken from the mountain tops, directed towards the ground.

स्पन्दतामपि नागानां मार्गा नष्टा वनोद्भवाः। मार्ग संस्थ्य संसुप्तं पद्मिन्याः सार्थमुत्तमम्॥
The course of the rushing elephants through the paths of the woods was hindered, as the good caravan was sleeping, obstructing the way to the lake filled with lotuses.

ते तं ममर्दुः सहसा चेष्टमानं महीतले। हाहाकारं प्रमुञ्चन्तः सार्थिकाः शरणार्थिनः॥ ते वनगुल्मांश्चधावन्तो निद्राधा बहवोऽभवन्। केचिद् दन्तैः करैः केचित् केचित् पद्भ्यां हता गजैः।।
The elephants, all on a sudden, crushed the caravan, which was sleeping in the ground. Then the merchants, uttering the cries of Ah! and Alas! sought for protection. Blinded by sleep, they all rushed towards the bushes and the forest (for protection). But some of them were killed by the tusks of those elephants and some by trunks, as also some were killed by their legs.

निहतोष्ट्राश्वबहुलाः पदातिजनसंकुलाः। भयादाधावमानाश्च परस्परहतास्तदा॥ घोरान् नादान विमुञ्चन्तो निपेतुर्धरणीतले। वृक्षेष्वारुह्य संरब्धाः पतिता विषमेषु च॥
Thus a large number of camels and horses was killed; as also the countless men, who were on their legs, killed one another, as they were all rushing in terror. Several of the merchants, who were crying loudly, fell down on the surface of the earth; several others climbed on trees; and some again fell down on uneven ground.

एवं प्रकारैर्बहुभिर्दैवेनाक्रम्य हस्तिभिः। राजन् विनिहतं सर्वं समृद्धं सार्थमण्डलम्॥
O king! thus accidentally attacked by a large number of elephants, the good merchants underwent a great loss.

आराव: सुमहांश्चासीत् त्रैलोक्यभयकारकः। एषोऽग्निरुत्थितः कष्टस्त्रायध्वंधावताधुना॥ रत्नराशिर्विशीर्णोऽयं गृहणीध्वं की प्रधावत।
Then there arose a great uproar, terrifying the three worlds, and also there broke out a fire. "O! save us from this trouble. Do you now fly away? These heaps of gems are scattered on all sides. Take them. Why do you fly?

सामान्यमेतद् द्रविणं न मिथ्यावचनं मम॥
These riches are nothing. My words are not untrue.

एवमेवाभिभाषन्तो विद्रवन्ति भयात् तदा। पुनरेवाभिधास्यामि चिन्तयध्वं सुकातराः॥
You terror-stricken ones! think upon the words that I tell you again. Exclaiming in the way as above, they all ran about in fright.

तस्मिंस्तथा वर्तमाने दारुणे जनसंक्षये। दमयन्ती च बुबुधे भयसंत्रस्तमानसा॥
While that terrible slaughter prevailed, Damayanti rose up with a mind agitated by terror and anxiety.

अपश्यद् वैशसं तत्र सर्वलोकभयंकरम्। अदृष्टपूर्वं तद् दृष्ट्वा बाला पद्मनिभेक्षणा॥ संसक्तवदनाश्वासा उत्तस्थौ भयविह्वला। ये तु तत्र विनिर्मुक्ताः सार्थात् केचिदविक्षताः॥ तेऽब्रुवन् सहिताः सर्वे कस्येदं कर्मणः फलम्। नूनं न पूजितोऽस्माभिर्मणिभद्रो महायशाः॥ तथा यक्षाधिपः श्रीमान् न वै वैश्रवणः प्रभुः। न पूजा विघ्नकर्तृणामथवा प्रथमं कृता॥ शकुनानां फलं वाथ विपरीतमिदंध्रुवम्। ग्रहा न विपरीतास्तु किमन्यदिदमागतम्॥
There the maiden, possessing eyes like the lotus-leaves, saw the effects of that unforeseen accident. viz., the slaughter, which meant to frighten all the worlds. On her awakening, she became insensible with fear; and also with an affected countenance, she became out of breath. Those of the caravan, who escaped from the slaughter unhurt, all assembled together and talked on the action of which that (the slaughter) was the result. 'Surely we have not worshipped that well-reputed Maharudra or that auspicious and magnanimous king of the Yakshas, Vaisravana. Or it might be that we have not worshipped the deities that cause distresses. Or perhaps we have not paid them the first offerings. 'Or this unnatural circumstance is the sure result of the birds (we beheld). Our presiding stars unfavourable; what else there is, from which this calamity has ensued?'

अपरे त्वब्रुवन् दीना ज्ञातिद्रव्यविनाकृताः। यासावध महासार्थे नारी हुन्मत्तदर्शना॥ प्रविष्टा विकृताकारा कृत्वा रूपममानुषम्। तयेयं विहिता पूर्वं माया परमदारुणा॥
Other again, distressed and deprived of wealth and friends as they were, said, 'That mad-like woman of unnatural look came are not among this mighty company of merchants, assuming an inhuman appearance. It is by her that this terrible illusion had been prearranged.

राक्षसी वाध्रुवं यक्षी पिशाची वा भयंकरी। तस्याः सर्वमिदं पापं नात्र कार्या विचारणा॥ पश्यामो यदि तां पापां सार्थनीं नैकदुःखदाम्। लोष्टभिः पांसुभिश्चैव तृणैः काष्ठैश्च मुष्टिभिः॥
This woman must surely be a Rakshasi or a Yakshi or a dreadful Pishachni. All this evil has been wrought by her, regarding which there should be no scruples. 'Should I again find out that vicious woman, who is the slayer of merchants, giving innumerable sufferings to them, I must kill her by either (throwing) stones or dust or grass or wood or by strokes of the hand.'

अवश्यमेव हन्यामः सार्थस्य किल कृत्यकाम्। दमयन्ती तु तच्छ्रुत्वा वाक्यं तेषां सुदारुणम्॥ ह्रीता भीता च संविग्ना प्राद्रवद् यत्र काननम्। आशङ्कमाना तत्पापमात्मानं पर्यदेवयत्॥
Damayanti, hearing their words, afflicted with fright and shame; and she on suspicion of their evil designs fled into the forest, greatly terrified. She also upbraided herself, saying-

अहो ममोपरि विधेः संरम्भो दारुणो महान्। नानुबध्नाति कुशलं कस्येदं कर्मणः फलम्॥
'Oh! the god's anger is violent and great upon me; and hence it is that peace never follows me. Of what deed (or misdeed) is this the result?

न स्मराम्यशुभं किचित् कृतं कस्यचिदण्वपि। कर्मणा मनसा वाचा कस्येदं कर्मणः फलम्॥
I do not remember that I have ever done any harm to any body, either by actions or thought or by speeches. Of what deed (or misdeed) is this, therefore, the result?

नूनं जन्मान्तरकृतं पापमापतितं महत्। अपश्चिमामिमां कष्टामापदं प्राप्तवत्यहम्॥
I have met with these sufferings, which are the results of that great calamity that has befallen me. Certainly all these are owing to was my perpetrating a cruel deed during my past existence.

भर्तृराज्यापहरणं स्वजनाच्च पराजयः। भ! सह वियोगश्च तनयाभ्यां च विच्युतिः॥ निर्नाथता वने वासो बहुव्यालनिषेविते। अथापरेयुः सम्प्राप्ते हतशिष्टा जनास्तदा॥ देशात् तस्माद् विनिष्क्रम्य शोचन्ते वैशसं कृतम्। भ्रातरं पितरं पुत्रं सखायं च नराधिप।॥
The consequence of that calamity are the loss of kingdom by my husband; his defeat (at dice) by his relatives; my separation from my husband, son and my daughter, and also this my unprotected condition; and my exile in these woods abounding in all classes of beasts of prey.' O king! thereupon the next day the rest of the merchants, who survived the slaughter, departed from the country, lamenting for the loss of their brothers, fathers, sons and relatives.

अशोचत् तत्र वैदर्भी किं नु मे दुष्कृतं कृतम्। योऽपि मे निर्जनेऽरण्ये सम्प्राप्तोऽयं जनार्णवः॥ स हतो हस्तियूथेन मन्दभाग्यान्ममैव तत्। प्राप्तव्यं सुचिरं दुःखं नूनमद्यापि वै मया॥
The daughter of the king of the Vidharbhas again lamented, saying, 'What a misdeed I had committed in the past! As the result of my misfortune, the crowd of men, whose company I have found in this solitary wood, was all destroyed by elephants. As it seems, surely I shall have to suffer certain distresses for a pretty long period.

नाप्राप्तकालो म्रियते श्रुतं वृद्धानुशासनम्। या नाहमद्य मृदिता हस्तियूथेन दुःखिता।॥
I have heard from old men that none dies before his time. Had this not been true, my afflicted self would surely have been crushed to death this day by the herd of elephants.

न ह्यदैवकृतं किंचिन्नराणामिह विद्यते। न च मे बालभावेऽपरि किंचित् पापकृतं कृतम्॥ कर्मणा मनसा वाचा यदिदं दुःखमागतम्।
Indeed, there exists nothing of men that does not fall within the category of destiny. I had committed no crime even in my childhood, either in action, thought or speech, for which reason this great calamity might befall me.

मन्ये स्वयंवरकृते लोकपालाः समागताः॥ प्रत्याख्याता मया तत्र नलस्यार्थाय देवताः। नूनं तेषां प्रभावेण वियोगं प्राप्तवत्यहम्॥ एवमादीनि दुःखार्ता सा विलप्य वराङ्गना। प्रलापानि तदा तानि दमयन्ती पतिव्रता॥
On the occasion of the Svayamvara, the assembled divine guardians of the worlds were neglected by me, for the sake of king Nala; and surely I think. it is through their potent interference, that I have been suffering from this separation.' That fair complexioned Damayanti, devoted to her husband, uttering these words of grief, became greatly afflicted with sorrows and looked pale.

हतशेषैः सह तदा ब्राह्मणैर्वेदपारगैः। अगच्छद् राजशार्दूल चन्द्रलेखेव शारदी॥ गच्छन्ती साचिराद् बाला पुरमासादयन्महत्। सायाह्ने चेदिराजस्य सुबाहोः सत्यदर्शिनः॥
O foremost of kings! even as the autumnal moon herself, she then went away with the Brahmanas, conversant with the texts of the Vedas, who survived that terrible slaughter. In the course of her going with haste, the maiden arrived in the evening at the great city of truthful Subahu, the king of the Chedis.

अथ वस्त्रार्धसंवीता प्रविवेश पुरोत्तमम्। तां विह्वलां कृशां दीनां मुक्तकेशीममार्जिताम्॥ उन्मत्तामिव गच्छन्तीं ददृशुः पुरवासिनः। प्रविशन्तीं तु तां दृष्ट्वा चेदिराजपुरीं तदा॥ अनुजग्मुस्तत्र बाला चामिपुत्राः कुतूहलात्। सा तैः परिवृतागच्छत् समीपं राजवेश्मनः॥
When she entered that good city, half dressed, the citizens saw her terror-stricken, very weak and helpless, of loosened hairs, unbathed and faring even as a mad woman. Through curiosity the boys of the city pursued her, while they saw her enter into the city of the king of the Chedis. Then the damsel, thus surrounded by the boys, came to the front of the palace.

तां प्रासादगतापश्यद् राजमाता जनैर्वृताम्। धात्रीमुवाच गच्छैनामानयेह ममान्तिकम्॥
From the palace the Queen-mother beheld her surrounded by a large number of persons; and asked her nurse to go and bring her before her Highness.

जनेन क्लिश्यते बाला दुःखिता शरणार्थिनी। तादृग् रूपं च पश्यामि विद्योतयति मे गृहम्॥
The Queen-mother also saw her, vexed by the people, helpless, overpowered by sorrows and seeking for protection, but the splendour of her beauty was such that it illumined the whole palace.

उन्मत्तवेषा कल्याणी श्रीरिवायतलोचना। सा जनं वारयित्वा तं प्रासादतलमुत्तमम्॥ आरोग्य विस्मिता राजन् दमयन्तीमपृच्छत। एवमप्यसुखाविष्टा बिभर्षि परमं वपुः॥
That beautiful and large-eyed lady, even as Sri herself, looked like a mad woman. Then, O king, the nurse ordering the crowd to disperse, took her into the palace and, struck with amazement, inquired of Damayanti, saying: 'How do you, oppressed with sorrow, bear a graceful form.

भासि विद्युदिवाभ्रेषु शंस मे कासि कस्य वा। न हि ते मानुषं रूपं भूषणैरपि वर्जितम्॥
Do you blaze like lightning in the midst of clouds? O! tell me who are you and to whom do you belong? Surely your beauty is not human, although you are not decked in ornaments.

असहाया नरेभ्यश्च नोद्विजस्यमरप्रभे। तच्छ्रुत्वा वचनं तस्या भैमी वचनमब्रवीत्॥
you effulgent one like unto the celestials! although you are helpless, yet you are unmoved by these (outraging) persons?' Hearing these words of the nurse, the daughter of king Bhima spoke the (following) words to her,

मानुषीं मां विजानीहि भर्तारं समनुव्रताम्। सैरन्ध्रीजातिसम्पन्नं भुजिष्यां कामवासिनीम्॥ फलमूलाशनामेकां यत्रसायंप्रतिश्रयाम्। असंख्येयगुणो भर्ता मां च नित्यमनुव्रतः॥
'Know that I am a woman, devoted to my husband; and a female-servant, belonging to a high caste. Know also that I stay wherever I like and subsist on fruits and roots. I am lonely; and I stop when evening draws nigh. My lord possesses innumerable virtues; and he was ever devoted to me.

भक्तामहपि तं वीरं छायेवानुगता पथि। तस्य दैवात् प्रसङ्गोऽभूदतिमात्रं सुदेवने॥ द्यूते स निर्जितश्चैव वनमेक उपेयिवान्। तमेकवसनं वीरमुन्मत्तमिव विह्वलम्॥ आश्वासयन्ती भर्तारमहमप्यगमं वनम्। स कदाचिद् वने वीरः कस्मिंश्चित् कारणान्तरे॥
I was also attached to that heroic one, following him in his course even as a shadow. It so happened that once he was engaged in the play at dice, at which he was defeated; and in consequence thereof he came alone into the wood. Beholding my heroic husband, wearing a single piece of cloth, maniac-like and afflicted with grief, I also followed him into the forest with a view to console him. Once on a time, that warlike one, for some reason go to in forest.

क्षुत्परीतस्तु विमनास्तदप्येकं व्यसर्जयत्। तमेकवसना नग्नमुन्मत्तवदचेतसम्॥ अनुव्रजन्ती बहुला न स्वपामि निशास्तदा। ततो बहुतिथे काले सुप्तामुत्सृज्य मां क्वचित्॥ वाससोऽर्धं परिच्छिद्य त्यक्तवान् मामनागसम्। तं मार्गमाणा भर्तारं दह्यमाना दिवानिशम्॥
He oppressed with hunger, lost, in the woods, that single piece of cloth out of carelessness. Following him, naked, maniaclike and devoid of all his senses as he was, I, with a single piece of cloth on, could not sleep for several nights. Thus many days passed away when I fell asleep. He then tore off onehalf of my garment and forsook me there, although I had not done to him any harm. Hence it is that I fare about seeking my husband and burn day and night in distress.

साहं कमलगर्भाभमपश्यन्ती हृदि प्रियम्। न विन्दाम्यमरप्रख्यं प्रियं प्राणेश्वरं प्रभुम्॥
Thus afflicted, I am unable to find out my lord, who is the darling of my heart and whose splendour is like the filaments of the lotuses. I do not see my lord, who is the delight of my heart, my own presiding god, most beloved of me and who again is like the celestials in appearance.

तामश्रुपरिपूर्णाक्षीं विलपन्ती तथा बहु। राजमाताब्रवीदार्ता भैमीमार्तस्वरां स्वयम्॥ वसस्व मयि कल्याणि प्रीतिमें परमा त्वयि। मृगयिष्यन्ति ते भद्रे भर्तारं पुरुषा मम॥
The Queen-mother herself addressed the daughter of Bhima, whose eyes were full of tears, bewailing in the above manner and whose voice was choked up in sorrow. O blessed lady! O gentle one! stay here with me. I am much pleased with you. Mymen will seek your husband in the woods.

अपि वा स्वयमागच्छेत् परिधावन्नितस्ततः। इहैव वसती भद्रे भर्तारमुपलप्स्यसे॥
It may so happen that he shall come here of himself in course of his roving about in the forest. O gentle one! do you live here now; and you shall get your husband back.'

राजमातुर्वचः श्रुत्वा दमयन्ती वचोऽब्रवीत्। समयेनोत्सहे वस्तुं त्वयि वीरप्रजायिनि॥ उच्छिष्टं नैव भुञ्जीयां न कुर्यां पादधावनम्। न चाहं पुरुषानन्यान् प्रभाषेयं कथंचन॥
Hearing these words of the Queen-mother, Damayanti spoke to her; 'O mother of heroes! I dare reside with you, provided that I shall not have to eat the remnants of a dish, nor I shall have ever to speak with other men.

प्रार्थयेद् यदि मां कश्चिद् दण्ड्यस्ते स पुमान् भवेत्। वध्यश्च तेऽसकृन्मन्द इति मे व्रतमाहितम्॥
If any body shall solicit me (to be his wife), that person must be punished by you. Or should he solicit me repeatedly, that criminal person shall be punished with death. This is the vow that I have prearranged.

भर्तुरन्वेषणार्थं तु पश्येयं ब्राह्मणानहम्। यद्येवमिह वत्स्यामि त्वत्सकाशे न संशयः॥
'I will find out those Brahmanas, who will search for my husband. Should you arrange all this, I shall no doubt live with you.'

अतोऽन्यथा न मे वासो वर्तते हृदये क्वचित्। तां प्रहष्टेन मनसा राजमातेदमब्रवीत्॥
If it is otherwise, to live does not find place in my heart.' The Queen-mother said to her:

सर्वमेतत् करिष्यामि दिष्ट्या ते व्रतमीदृशम्। एवमुक्त्वा ततो भैमी राजमाता विशाम्पते॥ उवाचेदं दुहितरं सुनन्दा नाम भारत। सैरन्ध्रीमभिजानीष्व सुनन्दे देवरूपिणीम्॥
'I will do all this. Very good is this your vow.' O monarch! the daughter of king Bhima was thus addressed by the Queen-mother. O Bharata! she called her daughter Sunanda and spoke to her this: 'O Sunanda! know well that this maiden is a goddess, even as your Shairindhri (a high class maid-servant).

वयसा तुल्यतां प्राप्ता सखी तव भवत्वियम्। एतया सह मोदस्व निरुद्विग्नमनाः सदा॥
As she is of the same age with yourself, do you take the lady as your companion and also play with her always without any apprehension in the mind.'

ततः परमसंहष्टा सुनन्दा गृहमागमत्। दमयन्तीमुपादाय सखीभिः परिवारिता॥
Thereupon Sunanda, having received Damayanti with the greatest delight, conducted her into her own apartinents, attended by all her companions.

स तत्र पूज्यमाना वै दमयन्ती व्यनन्दत। सर्वकामैः सुविहितैर्निरुद्वेगावसत् तदा॥
Damayanti was highly gratified with the respectful behaviour of her companion; and she lived there for some time, because all her desires were excellently satisfied.