~ 43. A Stranger Comes to Janaka's Court ~


Many princes came to Janaka's court, hoping to lift the bow and marry Sita. They all failed.
One day, a stranger arrived. "I will lift and string the bow!' he said.
The stranger bent down. He lifted the bow, but then he slipped, and the bow pinned him to the ground. 
King Janaka's guards could not free him, but Sita stepped forward and, all alone, lifted the bow, freeing the stranger.
The stranger was not grateful. He shouted at Sita, "If I cannot lift the bow, no man can!"
Then he stormed out of the court.
That stranger was Ravana.



Inspired by: Sita: An Illustrated Retelling of the Ramayana by Devdutt Pattanaik
Notes: This story is on p. 48 of the book. The story of Ravana attempting the marriage test comes from the Chhau dance-theater of Odisha, Jharkhand and Bihar.



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