He ceased: and King Sugriva cried
To sage Hanúmán 1 by his side:
'Summon the Vánar legions, those
Who dwell about the Lord of Snows:
Those who in Vindhyan groves delight,
Kailása's, or Mahendra's height,
Dwell on the Five bright Peaks, or where
Mandar's white summit cleaves the air:
Wherever they are wandring free
In highlands by the western sea,
On that east hill whence springs the sun,
Or where he sinks when day is done.
Call the great chiefs whose legions till
The forests of the Lotus Hill, 1b
Where every one in strength and size
With the stupendous Anjan 2b vies.
Call those, with tints ot burnished gold
Whom Mahás'aila's caverns hold:
Those who on Dhúnira roam, or hide
In the wild woods on Meru's side.
Call those who, brilliant as the sun,
On high Mahárun leap and run,
Quaffing sweet juices that distil
From odorous trees upon the hill,
Call those whom tranquil haunts delight
Where dwell the sage and anchorite
In groves that through their wide extent
Exhale a thousand blossoms' scent.
Send out, send out: from coast to coast
Assemble all the Vánar host:
With force, with words, with gifts of price
Compel, admonish and entice.
Already envoys have been sent
To warn them of their lord's intent.
Let others urged by thee repeat
My mandate that their steps be fleet.
Those lords who yielding to the sway
Of love's delight would fain delay,
Urge hither with the utmost speed,
Or with thee to my presence lead:
And those who linger to the last
Until ten days be come and passed,
And dare their sovereign to defy.
For their offence shall surely die.
Thousands, yea millions, shall there be,
Obedient to their king's decree,
The lions of the Vánar race,
Assembled from each distant place.
Forth shall they haste like hills in size,
Or mighty clouds that veil the skies,
And swiftly speeding on their way
Bring all our legions in array.'
He ceased: the son of Váyu 1 heard,
Submissive to his sovereign's word;
And sent his rapid envoys forth
To east and west and south and north.
They bent their airy course afar
Along the paths of bird and star,
And sped through ether farther yet
Where Vishnu's splendid sphere is set. 2
By sea, on hill, by wood and lake
They called to arms for Ráma's sake,
As each with terror in his breast
Obeyed his awful king's behest.
Three million Vánars, fierce and strong
As Anjan's self, a wondrous throng.
Sped from the spot where Ráma still
Gazed restless from the woody hill.
Ten million others, brave and bold,
With coats that shone like burning gold,
Came flying from the mountain crest
Where sinks the weary sun to rest.
Impetuous from the northern skies,
Wnere Mount Kailása's summits rise,
Ten hundred millions hasted, hued
Like manes of lions, ne'er subdued:
The dwellers on Himálaya's side,
Whose food his roots and fruit supplied,
With rangers of the Vindhyan chain
And neighbours of the Milky Main. 3
Some from the palm groves where they fed,
Some from the woods of betel sped:
In countless numbers, fierce and brave,
They came from mountain, lake, and cave.
As on their way the Vánars went
To rouse each distant armament,
They chanced that wondrous tree to view
That on Himálaya's summit grew.
Of old upon that sacred height
Was wrought Mahes'var's 4 glorious rite,
Which every God in heaven beheld,
And his glad heart with triumph swelled.
There from pure seed at random sown
Bright plants with luscious fruit had grown,
And, sweet as Amrit to the taste,
The summit of the mountain graced.
Who once should eat the virtuous fruit
That sprang from so divine a root,
One whole revolving moon should be
From every pang of hunger free.
The Vánars culled the fruit they found
Ripe on the sacrificial ground
With rare celestial odours sweet,
To lay them at Sugríva's feet.
Those noble envoys scoured the land
To summon every Vánar band
Then swiftly homeward at the head
Of countless armaments they sped.
They gathered by Kishkindhá's wall.
They thronged Sugríva's palace hall,
And, richly laden, bare within
That fruit of heavenly origin.
Their gifts before their king they spread,
And thus in tones of triumph said:
'Through every land our way we took
To visit hill and wood and brook,
And all thy hosts from east to west
Flock hither at their lord's behest.'
Sugríva with delighted look
The present of his envoys took.
Then bade them go, with gracious speech
Rewarding and dismissing each.
368:1 Válmíki and succeeding poets make the second vowel in this name long or Short at their pleasure.
368:1b Some of the mountains here mentioned are fabulous and others it is impossible to identify. Sugríva means to include all the mountains of India from Kailás the residence of the God Kuvera, regarded as one of the loftiest peaks of the Himálayas, to Mabendra in the extreme south, from the mountain in the east where the sun is said to rise to Astáchal or the western mountain where he sets. The commentators give little assistance: that Mahás'aila, &c. are certain mountains is about all the information they give.
368:2b One of the celestial elephants of the Gods who protect the four quarters and intermediate points of the compass.
369:1 Va'yu or the Wind was the father of Hanumán.
369:2 The path or station of Vishnu is the space between the seven Risbis or Ursa Major, and Dhruva or the polar star.
369:3 One of the seven seas which surround the earth in concentric circles.
369:4 The title of Mahes'var * or Mighty Lord is sometimes given to Indra, but more generally to S'iva whom it here denotes.