Magadha Kingdom

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This article is about the kingdom of Magadha in Indian epic literature. For the historical kingdom, see Magadha.

Magadha was an ancient Indian kingdom according to Vedic and post-Vedic texts such as the Epics, particularly the Mahabharata.[1]

Jarasandha had friendly relations with Chedi king Shishupala, Kuru king Duryodhana and Anga king Karna. In the Indian Epics, Magadha is states to be a kingdom with the capital Pataliputra (near modern Patna), a city on the banks of the river Ganges.

Mentions in the Mahabharata[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)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ National Geographic Society (2007). National Geographic Essential Visual History of the World. National Geographic. p. 48. ISBN 978-1-4262-0091-5. 

External links[edit]