SB 10.90.42

saṅkhyānaṁ yādavānāṁ kaḥ  

kariṣyati mahātmanām

yatrāyutānām ayuta-  

lakṣeṇāste sa āhukaḥ

Who can count all the great Yādavas, when among them King Ugrasena alone was accompanied by an entourage of thirty trillion attendants?

30 trillion+ is a very big number, however, the population of Yadavs seems to be quite large at that time:

The members of the Yadu dynasty are virtually innumerable; indeed, just to educate their children the Yadus employed 38,800,000 teachers. - SB 10.90

The Yadu dynasty produced innumerable great men of famous deeds. Even in tens of thousands of years, O King, one could never count them all. - SB 10.90

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    it cannot be trillion as understood today. The whole earth's area is around 200 million square miles, 30.10^12 divided by 2.10^8 is an impossible population density even if yadavas lived all over the world.
    – S K
    Feb 28, 2018 at 15:08
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    Most of the Hindu scriptures are written in poems so makes sense they use poetic devices like Exaggeration/hyperbole literary-devices.com/content/hyperbole Feb 28, 2018 at 15:27
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    Here's another absurd figure from the Mahabharata: "Yudhishthira said,--O son of Suvala, I know that I have untold wealth. But why is it, O Sakuni, that thou askest me of my wealth? Let tens of thousands and millions and millions and tens of millions and hundreds of millions and tens of billions and hundreds of billions and trillions and tens of trillions and hundreds of trillions and tens of quadrillions and hundreds of quadrillions and even more wealth be staked by thee. I have as much. With that wealth, O king, I will play with thee." Feb 28, 2018 at 17:13
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    @sv. There were much smallest units too..what if wealth unit is too too small here?
    – YDS
    Feb 28, 2018 at 17:49
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    @YDS - Ok . I think i saw value of gems equated with grains and other items. But those were small numbers compared to this . Mar 1, 2018 at 5:57

1 Answer 1


Refer the numbering system here comparing Sanskrit and western numbering:

शङ्कु (śaṅku) 1,00,000 koṭi 1012 10,00,00,00,00,000 One trillion

Perhaps what is stated above in your question is an exaggerated figure, what we normally term as "Atishyokti".

It's just like when we ask some one how many people came to watch the match, so if a person does not have an idea about the exact figures then perhaps he will reply (rather than not replying) that there were thousands and thousands of people, but that doesn't mean 1000 times 1000 or 10,00,000 .. as has been interpreted above:

yatrāyutānām ayuta-  

lakṣeṇāste sa āhukaḥ

Just quoting some population figures as stated here before/after Vedic age:

Proto-Vedic Period - World population 4 million; India is 100,000. -10,000

-4000: India's population is 1 million.

2600: Harappa and Mohenjo-daro have populations of 100,000.

Late Vedic Period

2000: World population: 27 million. India: 5 million

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    i think..that's how numbers are written...who writes exact numbers for big figures..for an instance most of the time people write 1.76 lakh crore for 2G scam.. and if someone writes it to Sanskrit, i believe it will be similar to the Qn's verse..
    – YDS
    Feb 28, 2018 at 15:39

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