The Mahabharata Home
Vaisampayana said,--"that heroic and foremost of the Pandavas endued with great energy, crossing the White mountains, subjugated the country of the Limpurushas ruled by Durmaputra, after a collision involving a great slaughter of Kshatriyas, and brought the region under his complete sway. Having reduced that country, the son of Indra (Arjuna) with a collected mind marched at the head of his troops to the country called Harataka, ruled by the Guhakas. Subjugating them by a policy of conciliation, the Kuru prince beheld (in that region) that excellent of lakes called Manasa and various other lakes and tanks sacred to the Rishis. And the exalted prince having arrived at the lake Manasa conquered the regions ruled by the Gandharvas that lay around the Harataka territories. Here the conqueror took, as tribute from the country, numerous excellent horses called Tittiri, Kalmasha, Manduka. At last the son of the slayer of Paka, arriving in the country of North Harivarsha desired to conquer it. Thereupon certain frontier-guards of huge bodies and endued with great strength and energy, coming to him with gallant hearts, said, 'O son of Pritha, this
country can be never conquered by thee. If thou seekest thy good, return hence. He that entereth this region, if human, is sure to perish. We have been gratified with thee; O hero, thy conquests have been enough. Nor is anything to be seen here, O Arjuna, that may be conquered by thee. The Northern Kurus live here. There cannot be war here. Even if thou enterest it, thou will not be able to behold anything, for with human eyes nothing can be seen here. If, however thou seekest anything else, O Bharata tell us, O tiger among men, so that we may do thy bidding. Thus addressed by them, Arjuna smilingly addressing them, said,--'I desire the acquisition of the imperial dignity by Yudhishthira the just, of great intelligence. If your land is shut against human beings, I shall not enter it. Let something be paid unto Yudhishthira by ye as tribute. Hearing these words of Arjuna, they gave him as tribute many cloths and ornaments of celestial make, silks of celestial texture and skins of celestial origin.
"It was thus that tiger among men subjugated the countries that lay to the North, having fought numberless battles with both Kshatriya and robber tribes. And having vanquished the chiefs and brought them under his sway he exacted from them much wealth, various gems and jewels, the horses of the species called Tittiri and Kalmasha, as also those of the colour of the parrot's wings and those that were like the peacocks in hue and all endued with the speed of the wind. And surrounded, O king, by a large army consisting of the four kinds of forces, the hero came back to the excellent city of Sakraprastha. And Partha offered the whole of that wealth, together with the animals he had brought, unto Yudhishthira the just. And commanded by the monarch, the hero retired to a chamber of the palace for rest."
Next: Section XXVIII