The answer to this question will never be justified since the details about battle strategies, weapons, formations (vyuhas) are pretty big. However, here is an overview of the Classification of Warriors In Ancient India, military units, divisions, and Vyuhas.
What we know today is just a small overview of the weapons and strategies used but the actual number was far greater than that.
Hierarchical Classification of Warriors In Ancient India
First, we have to understand the basics of the army division on both sides and how the hierarchy of soldiers was maintained.
- Padatik- Infantrymen.
- Ashvarohi – Horseman. One Ashvarohi = 12 Infantrymen.
- Gaja – Soldier on an Elephant. One Gaja = 12 Ashvarohi.
- ArdhaRathi – A soldier on a chariot who is considered equal to one Gaja.
- Rathi- A warrior who is considered equal to 12 Ardharathis
- AtiRathi – A warrior who is considered equal to 12 Rathis
- Maharathi – A warrior who is considered equal to 12 Atirathis
- Ati-Maharathi – A warrior who is considered equal to 12 Maharathis.
- Mahamaharathis – A warrior who is considered equal to 24 Ati-Maharathis.
Classification of Warriors In Ancient India
There are 5 Major Classifications of Warrior In Ancient India
A warrior capable of attacking 5,000 warriors at the same time.
A warrior capable of fighting with 12 Rathi category warriors or 60,000 warriors at the same time, discreet in his mastery of all styles of weapons and combat skills. Lava, Jarasandha, Kusha, Vibheeshana, Jambavan, Kritavarma, Bhima, Bhurisravas, Satyaki, Kuntibhoja, Devantak, Mahi Ravana, and Pradyumna, etc. were Atirathis.
A warrior capable of fighting 12 Atirathi category warriors or let’s say 720,000 warriors at the same time, prudent in his mastery of all varieties of weapons and combat skills. Parashurama, Abhimanyu, Vali, Alambusha, Angada, Ashwatthama, Atikaya, Lakshmana, Balaram Bhishma, Drona, Kumbhakarna, Sugriva, Ravana, Ghatotkachaa, etc. were Maharathis.
A warrior capable of fighting 12 Maharathi category warriors or 8,640,000 warriors at the same time; prudent in his mastery of all varieties of combat and weapon skills; skilled in coming up with & destroying all strategies (vyuhas); able to fight against all illusions & win against opponents in such situations. Hanuman, Rama, Krishna, Arjuna, and Meghanada are considered as Atimaharathis
A warrior capable of fighting 24 Atimaharathi class warriors or 207,360,000 warriors simultaneously. They are supreme Warriors & almost invincible. This includes Only Vishnu, Shiva, Brahma, Shakti, Manikanta, Kartikeya, Ganesha.
Now, if we look at Mahabharta only there will be this Classification of Warriors In Ancient India:-
Classification of Warriors from the Kaurava Side:
Sakuni, King of Gandhar and uncle of Kauravas
Sudhakshina, the ruler of the Kambojas
Jayadrath, the king of the Sindhu and brother in law of Kauravas
All 99 brothers of Duryodhana, together with Dushasan, are single Rathis
Duryodhana is assessed as a warrior adequate 8 Rathis
Duryodhana’s son Lakshmana and also the son of Dushasana
Bhurisravas, the son of Somadatta
Bhoja chief Kritavarman
Kripa, also known as Kripacharya, the son of Saradwat
The ruler of Madras, Salya
Asvathama, the son of Guru Drona and the avatar of Lord Shiva. (according to Bhishma; but the only pre-condition is that Asvathama needs to become very angry to unleash his full potential.)
Vrishasena, the son of Karna
The ruler of Pragjyotisha, the brave Bhagadatta
Alambhusha, the Chief of Rakshasas
Bhishma, even though he never classified himself. Later it had been disclosed
Karna is equal to 2 Maharathi.
Classification of Warriors from the Pandava Side:
Yudhishthira the son of Pandu and Kunti, is a Rathi.
Sahadev and Nakul are single Rathis
Sikhandi, the son of the king of the Panchalas
Bhima is considered adequate 8 Rathis.
Ghatotkacha, prince of Rakshasas and master of all illusions, son of Bhima and Hidimba.
The son of Drupuda, Dhrishtadyumna
Kuntibhoja, the maternal uncle of Pandavas
Satyaki of the Vrishni race
Drupuda, King of Panchalas
Arjuna is equal to 2 Maharathi warriors.
Dhrishtaketu, the son of Sisupala, the king of the Chedis
Abhimanyu, the son of Arjuna is equal to 2 Maharathi.
All sons of Draupadi are Maharathis
Here, I explained all the Classification of Warriors In Ancient India in a Hierarchical manner. Share and spread the Knowledge.