This article is part of  Sundara Kandam of Sage Valmiki

Tenth Chapter

Seeing of Mandodhari

(This chapter gives further description of the harem of Ravana, It gives a vivid description of Ravana, his women and his wife Mandodhari.It ends describing the happy Hanuman who mistook Mandodari for Sita)

Hanuman who was searching there, saw a cot, which was fit to be in the land of Devas, which was great, which had special parts made of gold and ivory, which had bed covers inlaid with diamonds, which had extremely costly special seats and which was fully decorated by gems and crystals. 1-2

He also saw a particular very special seat which was decorated all over by gold, which was shining like sun, which was very broad and which had all things which end sorrow 3

On one side of the seat he saw a very special umbrella, which glittered like the moon and which was decorated by many very special garlands. 4

On all four sides women were fanning the cot with white fan with soft bristles, it was scented by collection of many perfumes, several incense generating smoke were wafting about it, very precious bed sheets made of wool and hides covered it and all around it was decorated by garlands made of several rare flowers. 5-6

That monkey chief Hanuman saw on the shining bed on the cot, the Chief of Rakshasas, who was of the colour of deep black cloud, who was wearing special glittering ear studs, who was having red eyes, who was having very long hands, who was wearing cloths with golden zari, who had applied the highly perfumed paste of red sandal, who wore precious ornaments which was like the streaks of lightning in the red clouded sky of the dusk, who was handsome, who could assume any form that he wished, who was equal to the immobile Mandhara mountain with its several trees and bushes, who wore several pretty ornaments, who was tired after love play during the night, who was the darling of Rakshasa ladies, who created pleasant life to the Rakshasas and who was not showing the effect of alcohol that he has drunk. 7-11

Nearing Ravana, who was like a hissing serpent, Hanuman, who could even scare very strong people, was scared and confused and stepped back. 12

Afterwards that monkey chief Hanuman climbed a stairs reached another hall and from there carefully examined the sleeping king of Rakshasas.  13

That costly bed on which the chief of Rakshasas was sleeping looked like garden in which an elephant was sleeping after trampling over it. 14

He saw the two hands of the Rakshasa king, which was attached to his golden shoulders, which were long, which were like the flags of Indra, which had scars made by the tusks of elephant Iravatha, which were starting from his thick shoulders having the scars made by Vajrayudha, which was having the wounds made by Vishnu’s wheel, which was attached to his equal and thick shoulders, which had good hands and fingers, which had ideally shaped fingers and thumb, which were able and were like iron bars, which were round and resembled the trunk of an elephant, which were lying on the clean bed and which were like five headed serpents.  15-18

He looked at his two hands which were well covered with specially cold specially scented sandal wood which was as red as the blood of rabbits, which were decorated, which was applied with mixture of several scents, which was massaged by great ladies, which used to make devas, yakshas, Pannagas, gandarwas and Danavas weep, which were kept on the bed and which resembled pythons sleeping on both his sides.  19-21

That mountain like Rakshasa with his two hands shined like the perfectly shaped Mandhara Mountain with its two peaks. 22

The breath of the sleeping king of rakshasas which was having the sweet smelling scent of mango flower, pongamia flower and Vakula flower, which was having the smell of many food items and which was having the reeking smell of alcoholic drinks spread throughout that area, came out of his very big mouth.   23-24

Hanuman saw in that hall, Ravana who was shining with a slightly out of place crown made of precious gems and pearls, who was having a glittering face because of his ear studs, who was having a fat long and broad chest applied with the paste of red sandal which was shining because of his garlands, who was wearing a white silk upper cloth which was slipping down, who was wearing a very costly yellow silk, who was having red eyes, who appeared as if he was a mountain made of black gram, who was breathing like a serpent, who was like a royal elephant sleeping in the river Ganges amidst huge crowds, who was having the entire body shining by the light provided by golden lamps, who was like a cloud lit on all four sides by streaks of lightning, who was a great individual and who was having love towards his wife ,.sleeping along with his wives who slept at the corners of his feet. 25-30

He saw many of them(wives) who were having shining faces like the moon, who were wearing pretty ear studs, and who were wearing flower garlands which never fade. 31

He also saw some experts in dance and music who were seated and wearing the great ornaments worn by Ravana on his shoulders and lap. 32

He saw them wearing shoulder bangles of molten gold and ear studs made of diamond and other precious stones. 33

Due to their pretty glittering ear studs and faces like moon, that Vimana was shining like the sky because of a collection of stars. 34

Those narrow hipped ladies of Ravana were sleeping in various places due to tiresomeness caused by various exercises like lovemaking. 35

One lady was sleeping in the dancing pose with pretty Mudhras(symbols) shown by her hands and with many of her pretty parts exposed. 36

One lady who was sleeping embracing the Veena looked like a boat afloat in a mighty river, which was tied by the tendrils of Lotus plant. 37

A black eyed sleeping beauty with the Madduka (a type of drum) kept in her armpits, looked like a mother with her darling baby. 38

Another lady with very pretty breasts who was also pretty all over was sleeping embracing a drum and looked like a lady embracing her husband whom she has met after a very long separation. 39

Another lotus-eyed beauty was asleep embracing the Veena and appeared as if she had met her boy friend when nobody is around. 40

Another very passionate lady who was a dancer was sleeping embracing the Vipanchika (a stringed instrument) and appeared as if she was sleeping in tight embrace of her husband. 41

Another lady with eyes like wine was asleep embracing the drum with her golden coloured soft voluptuous and pretty body. 42

One flawless pretty lady was holding the drum in her armpits between her arms and breast and was sleeping tired because of her passion.  43

Another lady was sleeping with the two pieces of the drum (thabla) in her tight embrace and appeared as if she was holding her husband and baby in her hands. 44

Another lotus leaf eyed lady was holding with her two stretched hands the giant drum and was sleeping because of exertions of zest.  45

Another lady who was asleep with the slightly tilted Ghata (earthen pot musical instrument) looked like a small hill of the multi coloured flower garlands, which were kept fresh by sprinkling of water. 46

A young girl, who was deep asleep, was hiding her gold pot like breasts with hands and sleeping.  47

A full moon-faced lady with lotus petal like eyes forgot herself in her love zest and was sleeping embracing another lady with a pretty backside.  48

Many noble ladies in their great passion were sleeping embracing tightly to their breasts several musical instruments like they would embrace their lover. 49

That monkey then saw another very pretty lady sleeping on a beautiful bed in a place away from these ladies.  50

That great hero Hanuman who was the son of wind God saw the sleeping Mandodari, who was wearing very prettily crafted ornaments made of pearls and other precious gems, who by her natural luster was an ornament for that great house, who was a dear, who was white in colour, who was chief queen of that harem, who was golden in colour, who was having a pretty appearance and who was well made up, Hanuman mistook her for Sita because she was the epitome of youth and beauty and became extremely pleased and happy. 51-54

Exhibiting his monkey qualities he clapped his hands, kissed his own tail, became happy, jumped here and there, sang, ran, climbed on the pillar and jumped from there.  55

Thus ends the tenth chapter of Sundara Kanda which is in the Ramayana which is the first epic written by Valmiki.

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