Magadha Kingdom

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
This article is about the kingdom of Magadha in Indian epic literature. For the historical kingdom, see Magadha.

Magadha was a kingdom ruled by Vedic civilization kings. Jarasandha was the greatest among them during epic times. His capital was Rajagriha or Rajgir a modern hill resort in Bihar. Jarasandha's continuous assault on the Yadava kingdom of Surasena resulted in their withdrawal from central India to western India. Jarasandha was a threat not only for Yadavas but also for Kurus. Pandava Bhima killed him in a wrestling duel. Thus Yudhisthira, the Pandava king, could complete his campaign of bringing the whole of Indian kingdoms to his sway, release the imprisoned kings and start his preparations for the Rajsuya sacrifice.

Jarasandha had friendly relations with Chedi king Shishupala, Kuru king Duryodhana and Anga king Karna. After the epic age, in Kali Yuga, Magadha became the foremost of Indian kingdoms with the new capital Pataliputra, a port city on the banks of the river Ganges. Nandas and Mauryas ruled this kingdom. The Mauryas built the celebrated Mauryan Empire that spanned almost whole of India. This empire was formidable even to the Greek warrior Alexander.

Contents

References in Mahabharata[edit]

Link of Magadha with Chedi Kingdom and the Puru clan[edit]

  • Mbh 1.63

The following passage tends to link the Magadha rulers with the Puru dynasty of kings (an ancient Indian royal dynasty in which the Kuru dynasty was a subset and the Pandavas and Kauravas were born.) It also makes Magadha a province under the Chedi Empire in some point of time in history.

There was a king of the name of Uparichara. That king of the Paurava (a king belonging to the Puru clan) race, called also Vasu, conquered the excellent and delightful kingdom of Chedi under instructions from Indra. Vasu had five sons. The emperor installed his sons as governors of various provinces. His son Vrihadratha was installed in Magadha and was known by the name of Maharatha. Another son of his was Pratyagraha; and another, Kusamva, who was also called Manivahana. The two others were Mavella, and Yadu.

King Amvuvicha of Magadha[edit]

  • Mbh 1.206

Words of Karna, in a meeting in the royal court of Hastinapura

It hath been heard by us that there was, of old, a king by name Amvuvicha. Having his capital at Rajagriha, he was the king of all the Magadha chiefs. He never attended to his affairs. All his exertion consisted in inhaling the air. All his affairs were in the hands of his minister. And his minister, named Mahakarni, became the supreme authority in the state. Regarding himself all powerful, he began to disregard the king. And the wretch himself appropriated everything belonging unto the king, his queens and treasures and sovereignty. But the possession of all these, instead of satisfying his avarice, only served to inflame him the more. Having appropriated everything belonging to the king, he even coveted the throne. But it hath been heard by us that with all his best endeavours he succeeded not in acquiring the kingdom of the monarch, his master, even though the latter was inattentive to business and content with only breathing the air.

King Jarasandha of Magadha and ancient Indian politics[edit]

  • MBh 2.15

The whole chapter, 2.15, of Mahbharata, depicts the political scenario of ancient India, due to the military and political power exerted by Magadha king Jarasandha on the kingdoms and kings of that period. The entire chapter, describes the advice of the Yadava hero viz. Vasudeva Krishna to the Pandava king Yudhisthira

The dominance of Jarasandha over the Ailas, Ikshwakus and Yadavas[edit]

Vasudeva Krishna said to Pandava king, Yudhisthira,--'O great king, thou art a worthy possessor of all the qualities essential for the performance of the Rajasuya sacrifice. Thou knowest everything, O Bharata. I shall, however, still tell thee something. Those persons in the world that now go by the name of Kshatriyas are inferior (in everything) to those Kshatriyas that Bhargava Rama, the son of Jamadagnya, exterminated.' O lord of the earth, thou knowest what form of rule these Kshatriyas, guided by the instructions traditionally handed down from generation to generation, have established amongst their own order, and how far they are competent to perform the Rajasuya sacrifice. The numerous royal lines and other ordinary Kshatriyas all represent themselves to be the descendants of Aila and Ikshwaku. The descendants of Aila, O king, as, indeed, the kings of Ikshwaku's race, are, each divided into a hundred separate dynasties. The descendants of Yayati and the Bhojas (a subgroup of Yadavas) are great, both in extent (number) and accomplishments. O king, these last are to-day scattered all over the earth. And all the Kshatriyas worship the prosperity of those monarchs. At present, however, O monarch, king Jarasandha, overcoming that prosperity enjoyed by their whole order, and overpowering them by his energy hath set himself over the heads of all these kings. And Jarasandha, enjoying the sovereignty over the middle portion of the earth (Mathura), resolved to create a disunion amongst ourselves. O monarch, the king who is the lord paramount of all kings, and in whom alone the dominion of the universe is centered, properly deserves to be called an emperor.

The allies of Jarasandha[edit]

And, O monarch, king Sisupala endued with great energy, hath placed himself under his protection and hath become the generalissimo of his forces. And, O great king, the mighty Vaka, the king of the Karusha Kingdom, capable of fighting by putting forth his powers of illusion, waiteth, upon Jarasandha, as his disciple. There are two others, Hansa and Dimvaka, of great energy and great soul, who have sought the shelter of the mighty Jarasandha. There are others also viz., Dantavakra, Karusha, Karava, Meghavahana, that wait upon Jarasandha. He also that beareth on his head that gem which is known as the most wonderful on earth, that king of the Yavanas, who hath chastised Muru and Naraka, whose power is unlimited, and who ruleth the west like another Varuna, who is called Bhagadatta, and who is the old friend of thy father, hath bowed his head before Jarasandha, by speech and specially by act. In his heart, however, tied as he is by affection to thee, he regardeth thee as a father regardeth his child. O king, that lord of the earth who hath his dominions on the west and the south, who is thy maternal uncle and who is called Purujit, that brave perpetuator of the Kunti race, that slayer of all foes, is the single king that regardeth thee from affection. He whom I did not formerly slay, that wicked wretch amongst the Chedis, who represented himself in this world as a divine personage and who hath become known also as such, and who always beareth, from foolishness, the signs that distinguish me that king of Vanga, Pundra and the Kiratas, endowed with great strength, and who is known on earth by the names of Paundraka Vasudeva hath also espoused the side of Jarasandha. And, O king of kings, Bhishmaka, the mighty king of the Bhojas, the friend of Indra, who governs a fourth part of the world, who by his learning conquered the Pandyas and the Kratha-Kausikas, whose brother the brave Akriti was like Rama, the son of Jamdagni, hath become a servitor to the king of Magadha. We are his relatives and are, therefore, engaged every day in doing what is agreeable unto him. But although we regard him much, still he regardeth us not and is engaged in doing us ill. And, O king, without knowing his own strength and the dignity of the race to which he belongeth, he hath placed himself under Jarasandhas shelter at sight of the latter's blazing fame alone.

Jarasandha had two supporters called Hansa and Dimvaka, both of whom were incapable of being slain by weapons. Well-conversant with the science of politics and morality, in counsel they were the foremost of all intelligent men. They two and Jarasandha, I believe, are more than a match for three worlds. O brave king, it was for this reason that the powerful Kukkura, Andhaka and Vrishni tribes (sub groups of Yadavas), acting from motives of policy, did not deem it proper to fight with him.

The migration of royal tribes due to Jarasandha[edit]

Impact of Jarasandha on other kingdoms

And, O exalted one, the eighteen tribes of the Bhojas, from fear of Jarasandha, have all fled towards the west; so also have the Surasenas, the Bhadrakas, the Vodhas, the Salwas, the Patachchavas, the Susthalas, the Mukuttas, and the Kulindas, along with the Kuntis. And the king of the Salwayana tribe with their brethren and followers; and the southern Panchalas and the eastern Kosalas have all fled to the country of the Kuntis. So also the Matsyas and the Sannyastapadas, overcome with fear, leaving their dominions in the north, have fled into the southern country. And so all the Panchalas, alarmed at the power of Jarasandha, have left their own kingdom and fled in all directions.

Jarasandha's enmity towards Yadavas[edit]

Some time before, the foolish Kansa, having persecuted the Yadavas, married two of the daughters of Jarasandha. They are called Asti and Prapti and they are the sisters-in-law of Sahadeva. Strengthened by such an alliance, the fool persecuting his relatives gained an ascendancy over them all. But by this conduct he earned great obloquy. The wretch also began to oppress the old kings of the Bhoja tribe, but they, to protect themselves from the persecution of their relative, sought our help. Having bestowed upon Akrura the handsome daughter of Ahuka, with Sankarshana as my second I did a service to my relatives, for both Kansa and Sunaman were slain by me assisted by Rama. But after the immediate cause of fear was removed (by the death of Kansa), Jarasandha, his father-in-law, took up arms. Ourselves consisting of the eighteen younger branches of the Yadavas arrived at the conclusion that even if we struck our enemies continually with excellent weapons capable of taking the lives of the foes, we should still be unable to do anything unto him even in three hundred years. He hath two friends that are like unto the immortals, and in point of strength the foremost of all men endued with might. They are called Hansa and Dimvaka who are both incapable of being slain by weapons. The mighty Jarasandha, being united with them, becomes incapable, I think, of being vanquished by even the three worlds. O thou foremost of all intelligent men, this is not our opinion alone but all other kings also are of the same mind. There lived, O monarch, a king of the name of Hansa, who was slain by Rama (Valadeva) after a battle of eighteen days. But, O Bharata, hearing people say that Hansa had been killed, Dimvaka, O king, thought that he could not live without Hansa. He accordingly jumped into the waters of the Yamuna and killed himself. Afterwards when Hansa, the subjugator of hostile heroes, heard that Dimvaka, had killed himself, he went to the Yamuna and jumped into its waters. Then, O bull of the Bharata race, king Jarasandha, hearing that both Hansa and Dimvaka had been killed, returned to his kingdom with an empty heart. After Jarasandha had returned, O slayer of all foes, we were filled with pleasure and continued to live at Mathura. Then the widow of Hansa and the daughter of Jarasandha, that handsome woman, grieved at the death of her lord, went unto her father, and repeatedly urged, O Monarch, the king of Magadha, saying,--O slayer of all foes, kill thou the slayer of my husband.

The migration of Yadavas from Mathura[edit]

Then, O great king, remembering the conclusion to which we had come of old we became exceedingly cheerless and fled from Mathura. Dividing our large wealth into small portions so as to make each portion easily portable, we fled from fear of Jarasandha, with our cousins and relatives. Reflecting upon everything, we fled towards the west. There is a delightful town towards the west called Kusasthali, adorned by the mountains of Raivata. In that city, O monarch, we took up our abode. We rebuilt its fort and made it so strong that it has become impregnable even to the Gods. And from within it even the women might fight the foe, what to speak of the Yadava heroes without fear of any kind? O slayer of all foes, we are now living in that city. And, O tiger of the Kuru race, considering the inaccessibility of that first of mountains and regarding themselves as having already crossed the fear of Jarasandha, the descendants of Madhu have become exceedingly glad. Thus, O king, though possessed of strength and energy, yet from the oppressions of Jarasandha we have been obliged to repair to the mountains of Gomanta, measuring three Yojanas in length. Within each yojana have been established one and twenty posts of armed men. And at intervals of each yojana are hundred gates with arches which are defended by valorous heroes engaged in guarding them. And innumerable Kshatriyas invincible in war, belonging to the eighteen younger branches of the Yadavas, are employed in defending these works.

The development of Yadava military against Jarasandha[edit]

In our race, O king, there are full eighteen thousand brothers and cousins. Ahuka hath had a hundred sons, each of whom is almost like a god (in prowess), Charudeshna with his brother Chakradeva, Satyaki, myself, Valadeva the son of Rohini, and my son Samva who is equal unto me in battle—these seven, O king are Atirathas. Besides these, there are others, O king, whom I shall presently name. They are Kritavarman, Anadhrishti, Samika, Samitinjaya, Kanka, Sanku and Kunti. These seven are Maharathas. There are also two sons of Andhakabhoja, and the old king himself. Endued with great energy these are all heroes, each mighty as the thunderbolt. These Maharathas, choosing the middle country, are now living amongst the Vrishnis.

Yudhisthira could become an emperor if he eliminate Jarasandha[edit]

O thou art the best of the Bharata line, thou alone art worthy of being an emperor. It behoveth thee, O Bharata, to establish thy empire over all the Kshatriyas. But this is my judgment, O king, that thou wilt not be able to celebrate the Rajasuya sacrifice as long as the mighty Jarasandha liveth. By him have been immured in his hillfort numerous monarchs, like a lion that hath deposited the slain bodies of mighty elephants within a cave of the king of mountains. O slayer of all enemies, king Jarasandha, desirous of offering in sacrifice hundred monarchs, adored for his fierce ascetic penances the illustrious god of gods, the lord of Uma. It is by this means that the kings of the earth have been vanquished by Jarasandha. And, O best of monarchs, he hath by that means been able to fulfill the vow he had made relative to his sacrifice. By defeating the kings with their troops and bringing all of them as captives into this city, he had swelled its crowds enormously. We also, O king, from fear of Jarasandha, at one time had to leave Mathura and fly to the city of Dwaravati. If, O great king, thou desirest to perform this sacrifice, strive to release the kings confined by Jarasandha, as also to compass his death. O son of the Kuru race, otherwise this undertaking of thine can never be completed. O thou foremost of intelligent men if the Rajasuya is to be performed by thee, you must do this in this way and not otherwise. This, O king, is my view (on the matter). Do, O sinless one, as thou thinkest. Under these circumstances, O king, having reflected upon everything, taking note of causes, tell us what thou thyself thinkest proper."

Jarasandha's Missile attack on Mathura[edit]

  • Mbh.2.19

The mighty king of Magadha from his city of Girivraja, whirling a mace ninety-nine times, hurled it towards Mathura. At that time Krishna of wonderful deeds was residing at Mathura. The handsome mace hurled by Jarasandha fell near Mathura at a distance of ninety-nine yojanas from Gririvraja The citizens beholding the circumstance well, went unto Krishna and informed him of the fall of the mace. The place where the mace fell is adjacent to Mathura and is called Gadavasan.

This could be a meteorite fall. Chances of this to be a missile attack from Magadha (Rajgir) (in Bihar) to Mathura (in Uttar Pradesh) is very unlikely.

Vasudeva Krishna's final plan to eliminate Jarasandha[edit]

  • Mbh.2.20

Krishna said,--both Hansa and Dimvaka have fallen; Kansa also with all his followers has been slain. The time hath, therefore come for the destruction of Jarasandha. He is incapable of being vanquished in battle even by all the celestials and the Asuras (fighting together). We think, however, that he should be vanquished in a personal struggle with bare arms. In me is policy, in Bhima is strength and in Arjuna is triumph; and therefore, as prelude to performing the Rajasuya, we will certainly achieve the destruction of the ruler of Magadha

Jarasandha's Parentage and his death[edit]

  • Mbh.2.17, 2.24

Jarasandha's father was the king Vrihadvala of Magadha. His mother was a princess from Kasi Kingdom (MBh.2.17). Jarasandha was slain by the 2nd Pandava, Bhima, the brother of Pandava king Yudhisthira, through fierce wrestling, after he approached the king, accompanied by Vasudeva Krishna and Arjuna disguised as Brahmanas (MBh 2.24), (13,147). Jarasandha's son Sahadeva was installed in the throne of Magadha after his death. He became an ally of the Pandavas.

Jarasandha and Karna were friends[edit]

Jarasandha, the ruler of Magadha, having by conciliation and honours obtained Karna for a friend, had challenged all the Kshatriyas of the world, except the Kauravas and the Yadavas (8,8)

Hearing of the fame of Karna's might, the ruler of the Magadhas, king Jarasandha, challenged him to a single combat. Both conversant with the celestial weapons, a fierce battle took place between them in which they struck each other with diverse kinds of arms. At last when their arrows were exhausted and bows and swords were broken and they both became careless, they began, possessed of might as they were, to fight with bare arms. While engaged with him in mortal combat with bare arms, Karna was about to sever the two portions of his antagonist's body that had been united together by Jara. The king (of Magadha), then after feeling himself very much pained, cast off all desire of hostility and addressed Karna, saying, 'I am gratified.' From friendship he then gave unto Karna the town Malini. Before this, that tiger among men and subjugator of all foes (viz., Karna) had been king of the Angas only, but from that time the grinder of hostile forces began to rule over Champa also, agreeably to the wishes of Duryodhana (12,5)

Karna's promise to anyone who will discover the location of Arjuna for him in Kurukshetra War:- I shall give a hundred female slaves, with golden collars, belonging to the country of the Magadhas, and of very youthful age. (8,38).

Krishna, Bhima and Arjuna travel to Magadha[edit]

  • Mbh.2.20

This passage gives information about the route from Kuru Kingdom to Magadha Kingdom

Route taken by Bhima, Arjuna and Krishna from Kuru Kingdom to Magadha Kingdom to meet Jarasandha as per Mahabharata

Having set out from the country of the Kurus, they passed through Kuru-jangala and arrived at the charming lake of lotuses. Passing over the hills of Kalakuta, they then went on crossing the Gandaki, the Sadanira (Karatoya), and the Sarkaravarta and the other rivers taking their rise in the same mountains. They then crossed the delightful Sarayu and saw the country of Eastern Kosala. Passing over that country they went to Mithila and then crossing the Mala and Charamanwati, the three heroes crossed the Ganges and the Sone and went on towards the east. At last those heroes of unfaded glory arrived at Magadha in the heart of (the country of) Kushamva. Reaching then the hills of Goratha, they saw the city of Magadha that was always filled with kine and wealth and water and rendered handsome with the innumerable trees standing there.

Description of the Magadha Capital Girivraja[edit]

  • Mbh.2.21

The five hills surrounding the city[edit]

Filled with flocks and herds and its stock of water never exhausted, and adorned also with fine mansions standing in excellent array, it is free from every kind of calamity. The five large hills of Vaihara, Varaha, Vrishava, Rishigiri, and the delightful Chaitya, all of high peaks and overgrown with tall trees of cool shade and connected with one another, seem to be jointly protecting the city of Girivraja. The breasts of the hills are concealed by forests of delightful and fragrant Lodhras having the ends of their branches covered with flowers.

The hermitage of Gautama[edit]

It was here that the illustrious Gautama of rigid vows begat on the Sudra woman Ausinari (the daughter of Usinara) Kakshivat and other celebrated sons, the mighty monarchs of Anga, and Vanga and other countries. The forests of delightful Pippalas and beautiful Lodhras standing near the side of Gautama's abode.

The stronghold of the Naga tribes[edit]

There dwelt in old days those Nagas, Arvuda and Sakravapin, those persecutors of all enemies, as also the Naga Swastika and that other excellent Naga called Manu. Manu himself had ordered the country of the Magadhas to be never afflicted with drought, and Kaushika and Manimat also have favoured the country. Owning such a delightful and impregnable city, Jarasandha is ever bent on seeking the fruition of his purposes unlike other monarchs.

The people[edit]

  • Mbh.2.22

The impregnable city of Girivraja was full of cheerful and well-fed inhabitants belonging to all the four orders, and where festivities were perennial.

King Jayatsena of Magadha, with his allied Kings[edit]

  • MBh 1.67

The tale of births of Asuras, an extract from Mahabharata, actually mention many kings in the Magadha region allied with king Jayatsena of Magadha, who had taken part in the Kurukshetra War with many of the other kings mentioned here. He is thus depicted as having Asura culture, like Jarasandha himself.

That Asura who was the younger brother of Vritra and known as Krodhahantri became noted on earth as king Danda. That other Asura who was known by the name Krodhavardhana became noted on earth as the monarch, Dandadhara. The eight sons of the Kaleyas that were born on earth all became great kings endued with the prowess of tigers. The eldest of them all became king Jayatsena in Magadha. The second of them became noted on earth as Aparajita. The third of them was born on earth as the king of the Nishadas. That other amongst them who was known as the fourth was noted on earth as Srenimat, that best of royal sages. That great Asura amongst them who was the fifth, became noted on earth as king Mahanjas, the oppressor of enemies. That great Asura possessing great intelligence who was the sixth of them became noted on earth as Abhiru, that best of royal sages. The seventh of them became known throughout earth, from the centre to the sea, as king Samudrasena well acquainted with the truths of the scriptures. The eighth of the Kaleyas known as Vrihat became on earth a virtuous king ever engaged in the good of all creatures.

Jayatsena was another prominent Magadha king, contemporary to Jarasandha, probable an ally and vassal of Jarasandha during his reign and later attained independent, ruling his own part of Magadha. He was invited in the Yudhisthira's Rajasuya sacrifice. (MBh 2.43). He is said to contribute to Pandavas army in the Kurukshetra War. The king of Magadha, Jayatsena of great strength, brought with him for Yudhishthira an Akshauhini of troops (5,19).

Magadhas defeated by Bhishma[edit]

  • Mbh.13.44

During the occasion of abduction of the Kasi princesses

Having defeated all the Magadhas, the Kasis, and the Kosalas, Kuru warrior Bhishma brought away by force two maidens for Vichitravirya, the Kuru prince.

Magadha visited by Bhima during his military campaign[edit]

  • Mbh.2.29

This war took place before the Kurukshetra War, when Bhima lead a military campaign to collect tribute for Yudhisthira's Rajasuya sacrifice.

Bhima vanquished in battle the Submas and the Prasuhmas. And winning them over to his side, the son of Kunti, possessed of great strength, marched against Magadha. On his way he subjugated the monarchs known by the names of Danda and Dandadhara, And accompanied by those monarchs, the son of Pandu marched against Girivraja. After bringing the son of Jarasandha under his sway by conciliation and making him pay tribute, the hero then accompanied by the monarchs he had vanquished, marched against Kansa.

Magadha defeated by Karna during his military campaign[edit]

  • Mbh.3.252

This war took place before the Kurukshetra War, when Karna lead a military campaign to collect tribute for Duryodhana

Then descending from the mountain and rushing to the east, Karna reduced the Angas, and the Bangas, and the Kalingas, and the Mandikas, and the Magadhas the Karkakhandas; and also included with them the Avasiras, Yodhyas, and the Ahikshatras. Having (thus) conquered the eastern quarter Karna then presented himself before Batsa-bhumi.

Magadha defeated by Vasudeva Krishna[edit]

This war took place before the Kurukshetra War

The Angas, the Vangas, the Kalingas, the Magadhas, the Kasis, the Kosalas, the Vatsyas, the Gargyas, the Karushas and the Paundras,--all these he vanquished in battle. (7,11).

Ekalavya, the son of the ruler of the Nishadas, and the Kalingas and the Magadhas, and the Gandharas and the king of Kasi, and many rulers assembled together in the midst of the desert were vanquished by Vasudeva Krishna. (16.6).

Magadhas in Kurukshetra War[edit]

Some Magadha kings allied with the Pandavas where some other allied with the Kauravas, in the Kurukshetra War

On the Pandava Side[edit]

  • The king of Magadha, Jayatsena of great strength, brought with him for Yudhishthira an Akshauhini of troops (5,19).This reference is confusing since all other references in Mahabharata, indicate that Jayatsena joined the Kaurava side and was slain by the Pandava hero Abhimanyu.
  • Even as Pandavas are, so are their followers, Karuva's mighty enemies, viz., the kings of the Panchalas, the Kekayas, the Matsyas, and the Magadhas (5,53).
  • The son of Jarasandha, the king of Magadha, and Dhrishtaketu, the king of the Chedis, have separately come to Pandava side, each accompanied by an Akshauhini of troops.(5,57).
  • Magadha king Sahadeva, the son of Jarasandha, was one of the seven generals in the Pandava army. Summoning then those warriors eager for battle, viz., Drupada and Virata, and that bull of Sini's race, and Dhrishtadyumna the prince of Panchala, and king Dhrishtaketu, and prince Shikhandi of Panchala, and Sahadeva, the ruler of the Magadhas, Yudhishthira duly appointed them in the command of his seven divisions. (5,158).
  • Sahadeva, the Magadha king was slain by Bhishma the generallisimo of the Kaurava army (8,6):- The chief of the Magadhas sleepeth on the field of battle, slain by Bhishma.

On the Kaurava Side[edit]

  • The standard of Duryodhana guiding many hundreds and thousands of divisions bore the device of an elephant worked in gems. Paurava and the ruler of the Kalingas, and Salya, these Rathas took up their position in Duryodhana's van. On a costly car with his standard bearing the device of a bull, and guiding the very van (of his division), the ruler of the Magadhas marched against the foe. (6,17). And with a division that consisted of ten thousand active elephants, the king of Magadha followed that large car division. (6,18). The invincible ruler of the Magadhas ((6-82,109,115), (7-112), (9,2), stays on the Kaurava side.
  • It is not clear who this king of Magadhas was. But some references in Mahabharata hints that he was Jayatsena. It can be concluded that king Jayatsena allied with the Kauravas. Jayatsena of Magadha was described as one of the seven warriors who protected Kaurava warrior Shalya against the Pandava warrior Sweta. (6,47). He was also mentioned as battling for Kauravas in various occasions (6,107). The mighty Jayatsena the son of Jarasandha, the prince of the Magadhas was slain in battle by Abhimanyu (8,5), )(8,73).
  • Bhima destroyed the elephant division of Magadha (6,62)
  • Magadha army is mentioned to be a part of Kaurava army in many occasions (6-51,56,88), (7,20), (8-22,45,46,70), (9,33)
  • Abhimanyu slew the son of the Magadha king (7,46
  • Satyaki slew Vaghradatta a prince of Magadha (7,104)
  • Arjuna slays the two Magadha chiefs Danda and Dandadhara (8,18)
  • Vabhru's son that prince of the Magadhas, afflicted with arrows by Pandava Sahadeva's son, fell down.(8,85)

Magadha listed as a kingdom of Ancient India (Bharata Varsha)[edit]

  • MBh (6,9)

the Videhas, the Magadhas, the Swakshas, the Malayas, the Vijayas, the Angas, the Vangas, the Kalingas, the Yakrillomans;

The youngest Pandava, Sahadeva, married the daughter of Jarasandha[edit]

  • MBh (15,25)

The daughter of the king of Magadha who was known by the name of Jarasandha, is the wife of the youngest son of Madri viz Sahadeva.

Magadhas as a caste of people[edit]

Magadha was not only the name of a kingdom but the name of a caste, a mixed class formed by the intermixture of the basic castes of ancient India. (3,234), (7,80), (13,118), (14,64), (15-23,38), (12,58).

  • The son begotten by a Vaisya upon a Kshatriya woman becomes a Vandi or Magadha. (13,48).
  • The son begotten by Vaisya, upon a woman of the Brahmana order is called a Magadha, while the son that he gets upon a Kshatriya woman is called a Vamaka. (13,49).
  • Like Sutas, they make songs in praise of kings and battle heroes (14,64).
  • The Kshatriyas called Atirathas, Amvashthas, Ugras, Vaidehas, Swapakas, Pukkasas, Tenas, Nishadas, Sutas, Magadhas, Ayogas, Karanas, Vratyas, and Chandalas have all sprung from the four original orders by intermixture with one another (12,296)

Magadha became the most important mahajanapada in about two years.

See also[edit]

Kingdoms of Ancient India

Magadha

References[edit]