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Krishna Dwaipayana Vyasa
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 454 pages of information about Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa Bk. 3 Pt. 1.

“Vrihadaswa said, ’O king, O thou that never fallest off, listen attentively with thy brothers, I will narrate the history of a prince more miserable than thyself.  There was a celebrated king among the Nishadhas, named Virasena.  He had a son named Nala, versed in (the knowledge of) virtue and wealth.  It hath been heard by us that, that king was deceitfully defeated by Pushkara, and afflicted with calamity, he dwelt in the woods with his spouse.  And, O king, while he was living in the forest, he had neither slaves nor cars, neither brother nor friends with him.  But thou art surrounded by thy heroic brothers like unto the celestials, and also by foremost regenerate ones like unto Brahma himself.  Therefore, it behoveth thee not to grieve.’

“Yudhishthira said, ’I am anxious to hear in detail, O thou foremost of eloquent men, the history of the illustrious Nala.  It behoveth thee therefore to relate it unto me.’”

SECTION LIII

“Vrihadaswa said, ’There was a king named Nala, the son of Virasena.  And he was strong, and handsome, and well-versed in (the knowledge of) horses, and possessed of every desirable accomplishment.  And he was at the head of all the kings, even like the lord of the celestials.  And exalted over all, he resembled the sun in glory.  And he was the king of the Nishadhas, intent on the welfare of the Brahmanas, versed in the Vedas, and possessed of heroism.  And he was truth-telling, fond of dice, and the master of a mighty army.  And he was the beloved of men and women, and of great soul and subdued passions.  And he was the protector (of all), and the foremost of bowmen, and like unto Manu himself.  And like him, there was among the Vidarbhas (a king named) Bhima, of terrible prowess, heroic and well-disposed towards his subjects and possessed of every virtue. (But withal) he was childless.  And with a fixed mind, he tried his utmost for obtaining issue.  And, O Bharata there came unto him (once) a Brahmarshi named Damana.  And, O king of kings, desirous of having offspring, Bhima, versed in morality, with his queen gratified that illustrious Rishi by a respectful reception.  And Damana, well-pleased, granted unto the king and his consort a boon in the form of a jewel of a daughter, and three sons possessed of lofty souls and great fame. (And they were called respectively) Damayanti, and Dama and Dama, and illustrious Damana.  And the three sons were possessed of every accomplishment and terrible mien and fierce prowess.  And the slender-waisted Damayanti, in beauty and brightness, in good name and grace and luck, became celebrated all over the world.  And on her attaining to age, hundreds of hand-maids, and female slaves, decked in ornaments, waited upon her like Sachi herself.  And Bhima’s daughter of faultless features, decked in every ornament, shone in the midst of her hand-maids, like the luminous lightning of the clouds.  And the large-eyed damsel was possessed of great beauty

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