In devi mahaAtmayam we find details of battles between demons and goddesses.

Some of the famous ones are

Mahishasura Shumbha nishumbha ChanDa-munDa

I think these armies were higher in number than that of mahabharata

So what was the total number of army employed in these battles?

Information in detail like number of cavalry, infantry, archery and other soldiers.

These can be found in durga saptashati and markandeya puarana.

1 Answer 1


The Devi MAhatmyam or Sri Chandi has three sections - 1. Madhukaitava Vadha or the slaying of the demons Madhu and Kaitva. 2. MahishAsura Vadha and 3. Shumbha Nishumbha Vadha.

In the the first section, there are no battles involving army. So, in this section nothing relevant found.

In section 2 there are some mentions. Here the commander in chief of MahishAsura as well as few other powerful Asuras went to fight Devi. There they are mentioned as accompanied by very large troops.

The relevant verses from the Madhyama Charitah are as follows:

MahishAsurosenAnishchikshurAkhyA mahAsurah |
Yuyudhe chAmarashchAnyaishchaturangavalAmbitah || 41
RathAnAmayutyaih shadbhirudagrAkhyo mahAsurah |
AyudhyatAyutanAncha sahasrena mahAhanuh || 42

At that time, the powerful Asura called Chikshura, who was the commander-in-chief of MahishAsura, and another Asura called ChAmara, went to the battle scene surrounded with elephants, horses, chariots and infantry troops. 41

The Udagra Asura started the battle being surrounded by 6 thousands chariots. And the Asura called MahAhanu battled being surrounded by crores of chariots on his side. 42

PanchAshadbhishcha niyutairasilomA mahAsurah |
AyutAnAm shataih shadbhirvAskAlo yuyudhe rane || 43
GajavAjisahasraughairanekyaih parivAritah |
Vrito rathAnAm kotyA cha yuddhe tasminnayudhyate || 44

And, then the MahAsura called Asiloma started to fight with 5 crores of chariots on his side, and the VAskala Asura had 6 lakhs of chariots fighting for him. 43

The Asura called ParivArita also started to fight along with thousands and thousands of elephants, horses and crores of chariots. 44

In the last section there are no such mentions, at least no mention of such large troops. Devi creating from her breath a troop of 500 fighters and similar others are only mentioned.

  • In dhumra locahana and shubha nishumbha its there i think May 29, 2018 at 12:45
  • Okay I will check again. I have gone through the entire text but cursorily. I will update if needed. @RakeshJoshi
    – Rickross
    May 29, 2018 at 12:46
  • First word of verse 43 says panchAshadbhishcha indicating 50 .. second line says shataih meaning by the 100s, verse 44 says kotya meaning by the crores. Verse 42 says sahasrena for Mahahanuh implying 1000 and shadbhir for udagra meaning by the 100s. Are the translated numbers greatly inflated or am I missing the point somewhere ? May 29, 2018 at 14:12
  • @VishwanathN And who'll count the Ayut, the niyut? FYI the book that i have follows the 30 or so commentaries that are there on Sri Chandi.
    – Rickross
    May 29, 2018 at 14:38
  • I have checked again the Shumbh-Nishumbha section. But could not find anything. @RakeshJoshi
    – Rickross
    May 29, 2018 at 14:40

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