दमयन्ती 1 N. of the daughter of Bhīma, king of the Vidarbhas. [She was so called because by her matchless beauty she subdued the pride of all lovely women; cf. N.2.18 :-- भुवनत्रयसुभ्रुवामसौ दमयन्ती कमनीयतामदम् । उदियाय यतस्तनुश्रिया दमयन्तीति ततो$भिधां दधौ ॥ A golden swan first described to her the beauty and virtues of king Nala, and through him she communicated her love to Nala. Afterwards at the Svayaṁvara she chose Nala for her husband from out of a host of competitors among whom were the four gods Indra, Agni, Yama, and Varuṇa themselves, and the lovely pair spent some years very happily. But their happiness was not destined to last long. Kali, envious of the good fortune of Nala, entered his body, and induced him to play at dice with his brother Puskara. In the heat of the play the infatuated monarch staked and lost everything except himself and his wife. Nala and Damayantī were, therefore, driven out of the kingdom, 'clad in a single garment'. While wandering through the wilderness, Damayantī had to pass through several trying adventures, but her devotion to her husband remained entirely unshaken. One day while she was asleep, Nala in the frenzy of despair abandoned her, and she was obliged to go to her father's house. After some time she was united with her husband, and they passed the rest of their lives in the undisturbed enjoyment of happiness. See Nala and Ṛituparna also.] -2 N. of a flowering plant (Mar. मोगरी).
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