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Duryodhana

From Academic Kids

In the Mahabharata Duryodhana is the eldest son of the blind king Dhritarashtra by Queen Gandhari, and the eldest of the Kaurava brothers.

He ruled the lands of the Kuru family since forcing the Pandavas to exile following the infamous dice game, till his defeat in the great war of Kurukshetra. He had a personal enmity with his cousin Bhima. Both he and Bhima were well-built and both mastered the same weapon, the mace. The two engaged in a life-and-death combat, which was the ultimate battle of the entire war. Both warriors were evenly matched throughout, and there are several versions of Duryodhana's defeat at Bhima's hand; the most popular one is that Bhima crushed Duryodhana's thigh with his mace, which was supposed to have been illegal because it constituted "hitting below the belt". Thus, Bhima emerged victorious, and Duryodhana's death marked the end of the great war. As he was dying, he gave a tacit approval to Ashwathama to murder Prince Dhrishtadhyumna, and some other members of the Pandavas clan.

Literaly, Duryodhana means "hard to conquer". His chariot bore a flag depicting a hooded cobra.

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