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p. 275


(Sambhava Parva continued)

"Vaisampayana said, 'Then, O king, the mighty son of Bharadyaja presented himself before Drupada, and addressing that monarch, said, 'Know me for thy friend.' Thus addressed by his friend, the son of Bharadwaja, with a joyous heart, the lord of the Panchalas was ill-able to bear that speech. The king, intoxicated with the pride of wealth, contracted his brows in wrath, and with reddened eyes spake these words unto Drona, 'O Brahmana, thy intelligence is scarcely of a high order, inasmuch as thou sayest unto me, all on a sudden, that thou art my friend! O thou of dull apprehension, great kings can never be friends with such luckless and indigent wights as thou! It is true there had been friendship between thee and me before, for we were then both equally circumstanced. But Time that impaireth everything in its course, impaireth friendship also. In this world, friendship never endureth for ever in any heart. Time weareth it off and anger destroyeth it too. Do not stick, therefore, to that worn-off friendship. Think not of it any longer. The friendship I had with thee, O first of Brahmanas, was for a particular purpose. Friendship can never subsist between a poor man and a rich man, between a man of letters and an unlettered mind, between a hero and a coward. Why dost thou desire the continuance of our former friendship? There may be friendship or hostility between persons equally situated as to wealth or might. The indigent and the affluent can neither be friends nor quarrel with each other. One of impure birth can never be a friend to one of pure birth; one who is not a car-warrior can never be a friend to one who is so; and one who is not a king never have a king for his friend. Therefore, why dost thou desire the continuance of our former friendship?'

"Vaisampayana continued, 'Thus addressed by Drupada, the mighty son of Bharadwaja became filled with wrath, and reflecting for a moment, made up his mind as to his course of action. Seeing the insolence of the Panchala king, he wished to check it effectually. Hastily leaving the Panchala capital Drona bent his steps towards the capital of the Kurus, named after the elephant.'"

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