cars, looked extremely handsome. The citizens,
some on foot and some in excellent cars, with their
wives and followers were there by hundreds and thousands.
And there was the lord Haladhara (Valarama), roving
at will, hilarious with drink, accompanied by (his
wife) Revati, and followed by many musicians and vocalists.
There came Ugrasena also, the powerful king of he
Vrishni race, accompanied by his thousand wives and
followed by sweet singers. And Raukmineya and
Shamva also, ever furious in battle, roved there, excited
with drink and adorned with floral wreaths of great
beauty and with costly attires, and disported themselves
like a pair of celestials. And Akrura and Sarana
and Gada, and Vabhru, and Nisatha, and Charudeshna,
and Prithu, Viprithu, and Satyaka, and Satyaki, and
Bhangakara, and Maharava, and Hardikya, and Uddhava,
and many others whose names are not given, accompanied
by their wives that followed by bands of singers,
adorned that mountain-festival. When that delightful
festival of immense grandeur commenced, Vasudeva and
Partha went about, together, beholding everything around.
While wandering there, they saw the handsome daughter
of Vasudeva, Bhadra by name, decked with every ornament,
in the midst of her maids. As soon as Arjuna beheld
her he was possessed by the god of desire. Then,
O Bharata, that tiger among men, Krishna, observing
Partha contemplate her with absorbed attention, said
with a smile, ’How is this? Can the heart
of one that rangeth the woods be agitated by the god
of desire? This is my sister, O Partha, and the
uterine sister of Sarana. Blest be thou, her name
is Bhadra and she is the favourite daughter of my
father. Tell me if thy heart is fixed upon her,
for I shall then speak to my father myself.’
“Arjuna answered, ’She is Vasudeva’s
daughter and Vasudeva’s (Krishna) sister; endued
with so much beauty, whom can she not fascinate?
If this thy sister, this maid of the Vrishni race,
becometh my wife, truly may I win prosperity in everything.
Tell me, O Janardana, by what means I may obtain her.
To get her I will achieve anything that is achievable
“Vasudeva answered, ’O bull amongst men,
self-choice hath been ordained for the marriage of
Kshatriyas. But that is doubtful (in its consequences),
O Partha, as we do not know this girl’s temper
and disposition. In the case of Kshatriyas that
are brave, a forcible abduction for purposes of marriage
is applauded, as the learned have said. Therefore
O Arjuna, carry away this my beautiful sister by force,
for who knows what she may do at a self-choice.’
Then Krishna and Arjuna, having thus settled as to
what should be done sent some speedy messengers unto
Yudhishthira at Indraprastha, informing him of everything.
The strong-armed Yudhishthira, as soon as he heard
it, gave his assent to it.’”
(Subhadra-harana Parva continued)