nakulaḥ sahadevaś ca
kāśyaś ca parameṣv-āsaḥ
śikhaṇḍī ca mahā-rathaḥ
dhṛṣṭadyumno virāṭaś ca
drupado draupadeyāś ca
saubhadraś ca mahā-bāhuḥ
śańkhān dadhmuḥ pṛthak pṛthak
Translation of Bhagavad Gita 1.16-18
King Yudhishthira, the son of Kunti, blew his conchshell, the Ananta-vijaya, and Nakula and Sahadeva blew the Sughosa and Manipuspaka. That great archer the King of Kasi, the great fighter Sikhandi, Dhrishtadyumna, Virata, the unconquerable Satyaki, Drupada, the sons of Draupadi, and the others, O King, such as the mighty-armed son of Subhadra, all blew their respective conchshells.
Commentary by Sri A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada of Gaudiya Sampradaya:
Sanjaya informed King Dhritarashtra very tactfully that his unwise policy of deceiving the sons of Pandu and endeavoring to enthrone his own sons on the seat of the kingdom was not very laudable. The signs already clearly indicated that the whole Kuru dynasty would be killed in that great battle. Beginning with the grandsire, Bhishma, down to the grandsons like Abhimanyu and others—including kings from many states of the world—all were present there, and all were doomed. The whole catastrophe was due to King Dhritarashtra, because he encouraged the policy followed by his sons.
Commentary by Sri Vishvanatha Chakravarthi Thakur of Gaudiya Sampradaya:
Texts 15-16: The names of the conch shells are listed here, starting with Krishna’s Pancajanya.
Texts 17-18: The word aparajitah means unconquerable. However, it can be read capa rajitah, by including the previous ca as part of the word instead a separate word meaning “and”, in which case it means “equipped with a bow.”
Commentary by Sri Ramanuja of Sri Sampradaya:
1.1 – 1.19 Dhrtarastra said — Sanjaya said — Duryodhana, after viewing the forces of Pandavas protected by Bhima, and his own forces protected by Bhisma conveyed his views thus to Drona, his teacher, about the adequacy of Bhima’s forces for conquering the Kaurava forces and the inadequacy of his own forces for victory against the Pandava forces. He was grief-stricken within. Observing his (Duryodhana’s) despondecny, Bhisma, in order to cheer him, roared like a lion, and then blowing his conch, made his side sound their conchs and kettle-drums, which made an uproar as a sign of victory. Then, having heard that great tumult, Arjuna and Sri Krsna the Lord of all lords, who was acting as the charioteer of Arjuna, sitting in their great chariot which was powerful enough to conquer the three worlds; blew their divine conchs Srimad Pancajanya and Devadatta. Then, both Yudhisthira and Bhima blew their respective conchs separately. That tumult rent asunder the hearts of your sons, led by Duryodhana. The sons of Dhrtarastra then thought, ‘Our cause is almost lost now itself.’ So said Sanjaya to Dhrtarastra who was longing for their victory. Sanjaya said to Dhrtarastra: Then, seeing the Kauravas, who were ready for battle, Arjuna, who had Hanuman, noted for his exploit of burning Lanka, as the emblem on his flag on his chariot, directed his charioteer Sri Krsna, the Supreme Lord-who is overcome by parental love for those who take shelter in Him who is the treasure-house of knowledge, power, lordship, energy, potency and splendour, whose sportive delight brings about the origin, sustentation and dissolution of the entire cosmos at His will, who is the Lord of the senses, who controls in all ways the senses inner and outer of all, superior and inferior — by saying, ‘Station my chariot in an appropriate place in order that I may see exactly my enemies who are eager for battle.
Commentary by Sri Sridhara Swami of Rudra Sampradaya:
Sri Sridhara Swami did not comment on this sloka.
Commentary by Sri Madhvacharya of Brahma Sampradaya:
Sri Madhvacharya did not comment on this sloka.
Commentary by Sri Keshava Kashmiri of Kumara Sampradaya:
The purport is that the conchshell Pancajanya of Lord Krishna and the conch shells Devadatta, Paundram, Anantavijaya, Sughosa and Manipuspaka of the five Panadvas are renowned and famous; but in the army of Duryodhana there are no famous conch shells with any names. The point is whoever has aligned themselves with the Supreme Lord Krishna as their protector, undoubtedly without question will always be victorious. Then the warriors of the Pandava army began to sound their conch shells. Sikhandi is the son of Drupada who was born out of penance especially to slay Bhishma. Dristradyumna was born from a fire sacrifice especially to slay Drona. Satyaki was invincible like Arjuna never knowing defeat. So this verse is indirectly revealing to Dhritarastra that he should not entertain any ideas that his son Duryodhana will be victorious in the battle even with the assistance of Bhishma and Drona.
Commentary by Sri Adi Shankaracharya of Advaita Sampradaya:
1.16 Sri Sankaracharya did not comment on this sloka. The commentary starts from 2.10.
Commentary by Sri Abhinavagupta of Kaula Tantra Sampradaya:
1.12 — 1.29 Sri Abhinavgupta did not comment upon this sloka.
Sanskrit Shloka Without Transliteration Marks:
nakulah sahadevas ca
kasyas ca paramesv-asah
sikhandi ca maha-rathah
dhrstadyumno viratas ca
drupado draupadeyas ca
saubhadras ca maha-bahuh
sankhan dadhmuh prthak prthak
Sanskrit to English Word for Word Meanings:
ananta-vijayam — the conch named Ananta-vijaya; rājā — the king; kuntī-putraḥ — the son of Kuntī; yudhiṣṭhiraḥ — Yudhiṣṭhira; nakulaḥ — Nakula; sahadevaḥ — Sahadeva; ca — and; sughoṣa-maṇipuṣpakau — the conches named Sughoṣa and Maṇipuṣpaka; kāśyaḥ — the King of Kāśī (Vārāṇasī); ca — and; parama-iṣu-āsaḥ — the great archer; śikhaṇḍī — Śikhaṇḍī; ca — also; mahā-rathaḥ — one who can fight alone against thousands; dhṛṣṭadyumnaḥ — Dhṛṣṭadyumna (the son of King Drupada); virāṭaḥ — Virāṭa (the prince who gave shelter to the Pāṇḍavas while they were in disguise); ca — also; sātyakiḥ — Sātyaki (the same as Yuyudhāna, the charioteer of Lord Kṛṣṇa); ca — and; aparājitaḥ — who had never been vanquished; drupadaḥ — Drupada, the King of Pāñcāla; draupadeyāḥ — the sons of Draupadī; ca — also; sarvaśaḥ — all; pṛthivī-pate — O King; saubhadraḥ — Abhimanyu, the son of Subhadrā; ca — also; mahā-bāhuḥ — mighty-armed; śańkhān — conchshells; dadhmuḥ — blew; pṛthak pṛthak — each separately.