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Yahudit [Judith]

Yahudit [Judith]

Chapter 1

1 In the twelfth year of the reign of Nabuchodonosor, who reigned in Nineveh, the great city.
2 In the days of Arphaxad, who reigned over the Medes in Ecbatane. In Ecbatane he built walls round about of stones hewn three cubits broad and six cubits long.
3 He made the height of the wall seventy cubits, the breadth of it fifty cubits, set the towers of it upon the gates of it a hundred cubits high, and the breadth of it in the foundation threescore cubits.
4 He made the gates of it, even gates that were raised to the height of seventy cubits. The breadth of them was forty cubits, for the going forth of his mighty armies, and for the setting in array of his footmen.
5 Even in those days king Nabuchodonosor made war with king Arphaxad in the great plain, which is the plain in the borders of Ragau [Tobit 1:14].
6 There came to him all those who dwelt in the hill country, and all that dwelt by Euphrates, Tigris, and Hydaspes. From the plain of Arioch the king of the Elymeans, and very many nations of the sons of Chelod, assembled themselves to the battle.
7 Then Nabuchodonosor king of the Assyrians sent to all that dwelt in Persia, to all that dwelt westward, to those that dwelt in Cilicia, Damascus, Lebanon, AntiLebanon, to all that dwelt upon the sea coast,
8 to those among the nations that were of Carmel, Galaad, the higher Galilee, the great plain of Esdrelom,
9 all that were in Samaria and the cities of it, beyond Yordan to Yerusalem, Betane, Chelus, Kades, the river of Egypt, Taphnes, Ramesse, all the land of Gesem until you come beyond Tanis and Memphis,
10 and to all the inhabitants of Egypt, until you come to the borders of Ethiopia.
11 But all the inhabitants of the land made light of the commandment of Nabuchodonosor king of the Assyrians. They did not go with him to the battle, for they were not afraid of him. Yea, he was before them as one man, they sent away his ambassadors from them without effect, and with disgrace.
12 Therefore Nabuchodonosor was very angry with all this country, and swore by his throne and kingdom he would surely be avenged upon all those coasts of Cilicia, Damascus, and Syria, and that he would kill with the sword all the inhabitants of the land of Moab, the children of Ammon, all Yahud, and all that were in Egypt, till you come to the borders of the two seas.
13 He marched in battle array with his power against king Arphaxad in the seventeenth year, and he prevailed in his battle. He overthrew all the power of Arphaxad, all his horsemen, and all his chariots.
14 He became lord of his cities, came to Ecbatane, took the towers, spoiled the streets, and turned the beauty into shame.
15 He also took Arphaxad in the mountains of Ragau, smote him through with his darts, and destroyed him utterly that day.
16 So he returned afterward to Nineveh, both he and all his company of sundry nations being a very great multitude of men of war. He took his ease, and banqueted, both he and his army, a hundred and twenty days.

Chapter 2
1 In the eighteenth year, the two and twentieth day of the first month, there was talk in the house of Nabuchodonosor king of the Assyrians that he should, as he said, avenge himself on all the earth.
2 So he called to him all his officers, and all his nobles. He communicated with them his secret counsel, and concluded the afflicting of the whole earth out of his own mouth.
3 They decreed to destroy all flesh that did not obey the commandment of his mouth.
4 When he ended his counsel, Nabuchodonosor king of the Assyrians called Holofernes the chief captain of his army, which was next to him, and said to him:
5 Thus says the great king, the lord of the whole earth, Behold, you shall go forth from my presence, take with you men that trust in their own strength, of footmen a hundred and twenty thousand, the number of horses with their riders twelve thousand.
6 You shall go against all the west country, because they disobeyed my commandment.
7 You shall declare to them that they prepare for me earth and water, for I will go forth in my wrath against them. I will cover the whole face of the earth with the feet of my army, and I will give them for a spoil to them.
8 Their dead will fill their valleys and brooks, the river will be filled with their dead till it overflows.
9 I will lead them captives to the utmost parts of all the earth.
10 You go forth. Take beforehand all their coasts for me. If they will yield themselves to you, you shall reserve them for me till the day of their punishment.
11 But concerning those who rebel, let your eye not spare them. Put them to the slaughter, spoil them wheresoever you go.
12 As I live, and by the power of my kingdom, whatsoever I speak I will do by my hand.
13 Take heed that you transgress none of the commandments of your lord, but accomplish them fully, as I command you, do not delay to do them.
14 Holofernes went forth from the presence of his lord, and called all the governors, captains, and the officers of the army of Assur.
15 He mustered the chosen men for the battle, as his lord commanded him, unto an hundred and twenty thousand, and twelve thousand archers on horseback.
16 He ranged them, as a great army is ordered for the war.
17 He took a very great number of camels and asses for their carriages, also sheep, oxen, and goats without number for their provision.
18 He took plenty of victual for every man of the army, and very much gold and silver out of the king's house.
19 He and all his power went forth to go before king Nabuchodonosor in the voyage, to cover all the face of the earth westward with their chariots, horsemen, and their chosen footmen.
20 A great number of sundry countries came with them like locusts, like the sand of the earth, the multitude was without number.
21 They went forth of Nineveh three days journey toward the plain of Bectileth, and pitched from Bectileth near the mountain which is at the left hand of the upper Cilicia.
22 He took all his army, his footmen, horsemen, and chariots, and went from there into the hill country.
23 He destroyed Phud and Lud, spoiled all the children of Rasses, and the children of Yisrayah which were toward the wilderness at the south of the land of the Chellians.
24 Then he went over Euphrates, went through Mesopotamia, and destroyed all the high cities that were upon the river Arbonai, till you come to the sea.
25 He took the borders of Cilicia, killed all that resisted him, and came to the borders of Yahphet, which were toward the south, over against Arabia.
26 He surrounded all the children of Madian, burned up their tabernacles, and spoiled their sheepcotes.
27 Then he went down into the plain of Damascus in the time of wheat harvest, burnt up all their fields, destroyed their flocks and herds, spoiled their cities, utterly wasted their countries, and smote all their young men with the edge of the sword.
28 Therefore the fear and dread of him fell upon all the inhabitants of the sea coasts, which were in Sidon and Tyre. Those who dwelt in Sur and Ocina, all that dwelt in Jemnaan, and those who dwelt in Azotus and Ascalon, feared him greatly.

Chapter 3
1 So they sent ambassadors to him to treat of peace, saying:
2 Behold, we the servants of Nabuchodonosor the great king lie before you. Use us as shall be good in your sight.
3 Behold, our houses, all our places, all our fields of wheat, flocks, herds, all the lodges of our tents, lie before your face. Use them as it pleases you.
4 Behold, even our cities and the inhabitants of it are your servants, come and deal with them as seems good to you.
5 So the men came to Holofernes, and declared to him after this manner.
6 He came down toward the sea coast, both he and his army, set garrisons in the high cities, and took out of them chosen men for aid.
7 So they and all the country round about received them with garlands, with dances, and with timbrels.
8 Yet he did cast down their frontiers, and cut down their [Easter] groves. He decreed to destroy all the gods of the land, that all nations should worship Nabuchodonosor only, and that all tongues and tribes should call upon him as God.
9 He came over against Esdraelon near Yahudah [Judaea], opposite the great strait of Yahudah.
10 He pitched between Geba and Scythopolis, and there he tarried a whole month, that he might gather together all the carriages of his army.

Chapter 4
1 Now the children of Yisrayah [Israel], that dwelt in Yahudah, heard all that Holofernes the chief captain of Nabuchodonosor king of the Assyrians did to the nations, after what manner he spoiled all their temples, and brought them to nothing.
2 Therefore they were exceedingly afraid of him, were troubled for Yerusalem [Jerusalem], and for the temple of Yahwah their Father.
3 They were newly returned from the captivity, and all the people of Yahudah were lately gathered together. The vessels, the altar, and the house, were sanctified after the profanation.
4 Therefore they sent into all the coasts of Samaria, the villages, to Bethoron, Belmen, Jericho, to Choba, Esora, and to the valley of Salem.
5 They possessed themselves beforehand of all the tops of the high mountains, fortified the villages that were in them, and laid up victuals for the provision of war, for their fields were of late reaped.
6 Joacim the high priest, who was in those days in Yerusalem, wrote to those who dwelt in Bethulia, and Betomestham, which is over against Esdraelon toward the open country, near to Dothaim,
7 charging them to keep the passages of the hill country. By them there was an entrance into Yahudah, and it was easy to stop those who would come up, because the passage was narrow, for two men at the most.
8 The children of Yisrayah did as Joacim the high priest commanded them, with the ancients of all the people of Yisrayah, which dwelt at Yerusalem.
9 Then every man of Yisrayah cried to Yahwah with great fervency, with great vehemency they humbled their souls.
10 Both they, their wives, their children, their cattle, every stranger, hireling, and their servants bought with money, put sackcloth upon their loins.
11 Thus every man, woman, little children, and the inhabitants of Yerusalem, fell before the temple, cast ashes upon their heads, and spread out their sackcloth before the face of Yahwah. They also put sackcloth about the altar.
12 They earnestly cried to the Father of Yisrayah all with one consent, that He would not give their children for a prey, their wives for a spoil, the cities of their inheritance to destruction, and the sanctuary to profanation and reproach, for the nations to rejoice at.
13 So Yahwah heard their prayers, and looked upon their afflictions. The people fasted many days in all Yahudah and Yerusalem before the sanctuary of Yahwah Almighty.
14 Joacim the high priest, and all the priests that stood before Yahwah, those who minister unto Yahwah, had their loins girt with sackcloth, and offered the daily burnt offerings, with the vows and free gifts of the people.
15 They had ashes on their mitres, and cried to Yahwah with all their power, that He would look upon all the house of Yisrayah graciously.
Chapter 5
1 It was declared to Holofernes, the chief captain of the army of Assur, that the children of Yisrayah prepared for war. They shut up the passages of the hill country, fortified all the tops of the high hills, and laid impediments in the campaign countries.
2 He was very angry, and called all the princes of Moab, the captains of Ammon, and all the governors of the sea coast.
3 He said to them: Tell me now, you sons of Canaan, who is this people that dwells in the hill country. What are the cities that they inhabit, what is the multitude of their army, what is their power and strength, what king is set over them, or captain of their army?
4 Why have they more than all the inhabitants of the west determined to not come and meet me?
5 Then Achior, the captain of all the sons of Ammon, said: Let my lord now hear a word from the mouth of your servant. I will declare to you the truth concerning this people, which dwells near you, and inhabits the hill countries. No lie shall come out of the mouth of your servant.
6 This people are descended from the Chaldeans.
7 They sojourned before in Mesopotamia, but they would not follow the gods of their fathers, which were in the land of Chaldea.
8 They left the way of their ancestors, and worshipped the King of heaven, the Father whom they knew. They cast out from them the face of their gods, and they fled into Mesopotamia, and sojourned there many days.
9 Their Father commanded them to depart from the place where they sojourned, and to go into the land of Canaan. They dwelt there, were increased with gold and silver, and with very much cattle.
10 When a famine covered all the land of Canaan, they went down into Egypt, and sojourned there. They were nourished, and became a great multitude, so that one could not number their nation.
11 Therefore the king of Egypt rose up against them, dealt subtilly with them, brought them low with laboring in brick, and made them slaves.
12 They cried unto their Father, and He smote all the land of Egypt with incurable plagues. So the Egyptians cast them out of their sight.
13 Yahwah dried the Red Sea before them.
14 He brought them to mount Sinai, and Cades-Barne, and cast forth all that dwelt in the wilderness.
15 So they dwelt in the land of the Amorites. They destroyed by their strength all them of Esebon, and passing over Yordan they possessed all the hill country.
16 They cast forth before them the Canaanite, the Perezite, the Jebusite, the Sychemite, and all the Gergesites. They dwelt in that country many days.
17 They prospered while they did not sin before their Father, because the Father that hates iniquity was with them.
18 When they departed from the way which He appointed them, they were destroyed in many very severe battles, were led captives into a land that was not theirs, the temple of their Father was cast to the ground, and their cities were taken by the enemies.
19 Now they are returned to their Father, are come up from the places where they were scattered, have possessed Yerusalem, where their sanctuary is, and are seated in the hill country, for it was desolate.
20 Now therefore, my lord and governor, if there be any error against this people, and they sin against their Father, let us consider that this shall be their ruin. Let us go up, and we shall overcome them.
21 But if there is no iniquity in their nation, let my lord pass by now, unless their Father defend them, and we become a reproach before all the world.
22 When Achior finished these sayings, all the people standing round about the tent murmured. The chief men of Holofernes, all that dwelt by the sea side, and in Moab, spoke that he should kill him.
23 We will not be afraid of the face of the children of Yisrayah. Lo, it is a people that have no strength nor power for a strong battle.
24 Now therefore, lord Holofernes, we will go up, and they shall be a prey to be devoured of all your army.

Chapter 6
1 When the tumult of men that were about the council was ceased, Holofernes the chief captain of the army of Assur said to Achior and all the Moabites before all the company of other nations:
2 Who are you, Achior, and the hirelings of Ephrayim, that you prophesied against us as today, and said that we should not make war with the people of Yisrayah, because their Father will defend them? Who is Lord but Nabuchodonosor?
3 He will send his power, and will destroy them from the face of the earth, their Father shall not deliver them. We his servants will destroy them as one man. They are not able to sustain the power of our horses.
4 With them we will tread them under foot, their mountains shall be drunken with their blood, their fields shall be filled with their dead bodies, and their footsteps shall not be able to stand before us, for they shall utterly perish: says king Nabuchodonosor, lord of all the earth. He said: None of my words shall be in vain.
5 You, Achior, a hireling of Ammon, who spoke these words in the day of your iniquity, shall see my face no more from this day, until I take vengeance of this nation that came out of Egypt.
6 Then the swords of my army, and the multitude of those who serve me, shall pass through your sides. You shall fall among the dead, when I return.
7 My servants shall bring you back into the hill country, and set you in one of the cities of the passages.
8 You shall not perish, till you are destroyed with them.
9 If you persuade yourself in your mind that they shall be taken, do not let your countenance fall. I spoke it, and none of my words shall be in vain.
10 Then Holofernes commanded his servants that waited in his tent, to take Achior, bring him to Bethulia, and deliver him into the hands of the children of Yisrayah.
11 So his servants took him, brought him out of the camp, into the plain, from the midst of the plain into the hill country, and came to the fountains that were under Bethulia [meaning: virginity. it is: Shechem].
12 When the men of the city saw them, they took up their weapons, and went out of the city to the top of the hill. Every man that used a sling kept them from coming up by casting of stones against them.
13 Nevertheless having gotten secretly under the hill, they bound Achior, cast him down, left him at the foot of the hill, and returned to their lord.
14 The Yisrayahites descended from their city, came to him, loosed him, brought him to Bethulia, and presented him to the governors of the city,
15 which in those days were Ozias the son of Micha, of the tribe of Simeon, and Chabris the son of Gothoniel, and Charmis the son of Melchiel.
16 They called together all the ancients of the city, and all their youth ran together, and their women, to the assembly. They set Achior in the midst of all their people. Then Ozias asked him of that which was done.
17 He answered and declared to them the words of the council of Holofernes, and all the words that he spoke in the midst of the princes of Assur, and whatsoever Holofernes spoke proudly against the house of Yisrayah.
18 Then the people fell down and worshipped Yahwah, and cried to Yahwah, saying:
19 O Yahwah Father of heaven, behold their pride, pity the low estate of our nation, and look upon the face of those that are sanctified to you today.
20 They comforted Achior, and praised him greatly.
21 Ozias took him out of the assembly to his house, and made a feast to the elders. They called on the Father of Yisrayah all that night for help.

Chapter 7
1 The next day Holofernes commanded all his army, and all his people which were come to take his part, that they should move their camp against Bethulia, to take beforehand the ascents of the hill country to make war against the children of Yisrayah.
2 Their strong men moved their camps in that day. The army of the men of war was a hundred and seventy thousand footmen, and twelve thousand horsemen, beside the baggage, and other men that were afoot among them, a very great multitude.
3 They camped in the valley near Bethulia, by the fountain. They spread themselves in breadth over Dothaim even to Belmaim, and in length from Bethulia unto Cynamon, which is over against Esdraelon.
4 Now the children of Yisrayah were greatly troubled when they saw the multitude of them, and said every one to his neighbor: These men will lick up the face of the earth. Not the high mountains, nor the valleys, nor the hills, are able to bear their weight.
5 Then every man took up his weapons of war, and when they had kindled fires upon their towers, they remained and watched all that night.
6 In the second day Holofernes brought forth all his horsemen in the sight of the children of Yisrayah which were in Bethulia,
7 viewed the passages up to the city, came to the fountains of their waters, took them, set garrisons of men of war over them, and he himself removed toward his people.
8 Then all the chief of the children of Esau came to him, and all the governors of the people of Moab, and the captains of the sea coast, and said:
9 Let our lord now hear a word, that there not be an overthrow in your army.
10 This people of the children of Yisrayah do not trust in their spears, but in the height of the mountains where they dwell, because it is not easy to come up to the tops of their mountains.
11 My lord, do not fight against them in battle array, and there shall not so much as one man of your people perish.
12 Remain in your camp, keep all the men of your army. Let your servants get into their hands the fountain of water which issues forth from the foot of the mountain.
13 All the inhabitants of Bethulia have their water there, so thirst shall kill them. They shall give up their city. We and our people shall go up to the tops of the mountains that are near, and will camp upon them, to watch that none go out of the city.
14 So they and their wives and their children shall be consumed with fire, and before the sword come against them, they shall be overthrown in the streets where they dwell.
15 Thus you shall render them an evil reward; they rebelled, and did not meet your person peaceably.
16 These words pleased Holofernes and all his servants, and he appointed to do as they spoke.
17 So the camp of the children of Ammon departed, and with them five thousand of the Assyrians. They pitched in the valley, took the waters, and the fountains of the waters of the children of Yisrayah.
18 Then the children of Esau went up with the children of Ammon, and camped in the hill country over against Dothaim. They sent some of them toward the south, and toward the east over against Ekrebel, which is near to Chusi, that is upon the brook Mochmur. The rest of the army of the Assyrians camped in the plain, and covered the face of the whole land. Their tents and carriages were pitched to a very great multitude.
19 The children of Yisrayah cried to Yahwah their Father, because their heart failed, for all their enemies surrounded them round about, and there was no way to escape out from among them.
20 Thus all the company of Assur remained about them, both their footmen, chariots, and horsemen, four and thirty days, so that all their vessels of water failed all the inhibitants of Bethulia.
21 The cisterns were emptied, they did not have enough water to drink their fill for one day, they gave them drink by measure.
22 Therefore their young children were out of heart, their women and young men fainted for thirst and fell down in the streets of the city, and by the passages of the gates. There was no longer any strength in them.
23 Then all the people assembled to Ozias, to the chief of the city, both young men, women, and children, cried with a loud voice, and said before all the elders:
24 Yahwah be judge between us and you. You did us great injury, in that you did not require peace of the children of Assur.
25 Now we have no helper. Yahwah sold us into their hands, that we should be thrown down before them with thirst and great destruction.
26 Now call them to you, deliver the whole city for a spoil to the people of Holofernes, and to all his army.
27 It is better for us to be made a spoil to them, than to die for thirst. We will be his servants, that our souls may live, and not see the death of our infants before our eyes, nor our wives nor our children to die.
28 We take to witness against you the heaven, the earth, and the Father of our fathers, which punishes us according to our sins and the sins of our fathers, that he not do according as we said this day.
29 Then there was great weeping with one consent in the midst of the assembly, they cried unto Yahwah with a loud voice.
30 Then Ozias said to them: brothers, be of good courage, let us endure yet five days, in the which space Yahwah our Father may turn His mercy toward us. He will not forget us utterly.
31 If these days pass, and no help come unto us, I will do according to your word.
32 He dispersed the people, every one to their own charge. They went to the walls and towers of their city, and sent the women and children into their houses, they were brought very low in the city.

Chapter 8
1 Now at that time Yahudith heard of it (who was the daughter of Merari, the son of Ox, the son of Yahusef, the son of Ozel, the son of Elcia, the son of Ananias, the son of Gedeon, the son of Raphaim, the son of Acitho, the son of Eliu, the son of Eliab, the son of Nathanael, the son of Samael, the son of Salasadal, the son of Yisrayah).
2 Manasses was her husband, of her tribe and kindred, who died in the barley harvest.
3 As he stood overseeing those who bound sheaves in the field, the heat came upon his head, he fell on his bed, and died in the city of Bethulia. They buried him with his fathers in the field between Dothaim and Balamo.
4 So Yahudith was a widow in her house three years and four months.
5 She made a tent upon the top of her house, put sackcloth upon her loins, and wore her widow's apparel.
6 She fasted all the days of her widowhood, save the eves of the sabbaths, the sabbaths, the eves of the new moons, the new moons, the feasts, and solemn days of the house of Yisrayah.
7 She was also of a goodly countenance, and very beautiful to behold. Her husband Manasses left her gold, silver, menservants, maidservants, cattle, and lands, and she remained upon them.
8 There was none that gave her an ill word, she feared Yahwah greatly.
9 She heard the evil words of the people against the governor, that they fainted for lack of water. Yahudith heard all the words that Ozias spoke to them, that he swore to deliver the city to the Assyrians after five days.
10 She sent her waitingwoman, that had the government of all things that she had, to call Ozias, Chabris, and Charmis, the ancients of the city.
11 They came to her, and she said to them: Hear me now, O you governors of the inhabitants of Bethulia. Your words that you spoke before the people today are not right, touching this oath which you made and pronounced between Yahwah and you. You promised to deliver the city to our enemies, unless within these days Yahwah turn to help you.
12 Who are you that tempts Yahwah today, and stand instead of Yahwah among the children of men?
13 If you try Yahwah Almighty you shall never know anything.
14 You cannot find the depth of the heart of man, nor can you perceive the things that He thinks. How then can you search out Yahwah, who made all these things, and know His mind, or comprehend His purpose? Nay, my brothers, do not provoke Yahwah our Father to anger.
15 If He will not help us within these five days, He has power to defend us when He will, even every day, or to destroy us before our enemies.
16 Do not bind the counsels of Yahwah our Father. Yahwah is not as man, that He may be threatened. Neither is He as the son of man, that He should be wavering.
17 Therefore let us wait for salvation of Him. Call upon Him to help us, and He will hear our voice, if it please Him.
18 There arose none in our age, nor is there any now in these days (neither tribe, nor family, nor people, nor city among us), which worship gods made with hands, as was before.
19 For this reason our fathers were given to the sword, for a spoil, and had a great fall before our enemies.
20 But we know no god, therefore we trust He will not despise us, nor any of our nation.
21 For if we be taken so, all Yahudah shall lie waste, and our sanctuary shall be spoiled. He will require the profanation of it at our mouth.
22 The slaughter of our brothers, the captivity of the country, and the desolation of our inheritance, He will turn upon our heads among the Gentiles, wheresoever we shall be in bondage. We shall be an offence and a reproach to all those who possess us.
23 Our servitude shall not be directed to favor, Yahwah our Father shall turn it to dishonor.
24 O brothers, let us show an example to our brothers, their hearts depend upon us, the sanctuary, the house, and the altar, rest upon us.
25 Moreover let us give thanks to Yahwah our Father, who tries us, even as He tried our fathers.
26 Remember what things He did to Abraham, how He tried Isaac, and what happened to Yaacob in Mesopotamia of Syria, when he kept the sheep of Laban his mother's brother.
27 He did not try us in the fire, as He did them for the examination of their hearts, nor did He take vengeance on us. But Yahwah does scourge those who come near Him, to admonish them.
28 Then Ozias said to her: All that you spoke you spoke with a good heart, and there is none that may gainsay your words.
29 This is not the first day where your wisdom is manifested. From the beginning of your days all the people have known your understanding, because the disposition of your heart is good.
30 But the people are very thirsty, and compel us to do to them as we spoke, to bring an oath upon ourselves which we will not break.
31 Pray for us, because you are a righteous woman. Yahwah will send rain to fill our cisterns, and we shall faint no more.
32 Then Yahudith said to them: Hear me. I will do a thing, which shall go throughout all generations to the children of our nation.
33 You shall stand this night in the gate, I will go forth with my waitingwoman. Yahwah will visit Yisrayah by my hand within the days you promised to deliver the city to our enemies.
34 Do not enquire of my act. I will not declare it to you, till the things that I do are finished.
35 Then Ozias and the princes said to her: Go in peace, and Father Yahwah be before you, to take vengeance on our enemies.
36 So they returned from the tent, and went to their wards.

Chapter 9
1 Yahudith fell upon her face, put ashes upon her head, and uncovered the sackcloth with which she was clothed. About the time that the incense of that evening was offered in Yerusalem in the house of Yahwah Yahudith cried with a loud voice, and said:
2 O Yahwah Father of my father Simeon, to whom you gave a sword to take vengeance of the strangers who loosened the girdle of a maid to defile her, discovered the thigh to her shame, and polluted her virginity to her reproach. You said: It shall not be so. Yet they did so.
3 So you gave their rulers to be slain, being deceived they dyed their bed in blood, smote the servants with their lords, and the lords upon their thrones.
4 You gave their wives for a prey, their daughters to be captives, and all their spoils to be divided among your dear children who were moved with your zeal, abhorred the pollution of their blood, and called upon you for aid. O Father, O my Father, hear me also, a widow.
5 You not only wrought those things, but also the things which fell out before, and which ensued after. You thought upon the things which are now, and which are to come.
6 Yea, what things you did determine were ready at hand, and said: Lo, we are here. All your ways are prepared, and your judgments are in your foreknowledge.
7 Behold, the Assyrians are multiplied in their power, they are exalted with horse and man, they glory in the strength of their footmen, they trust in shield, spear, bow, and sling. They do not know that you are Yahwah who break the battles. Yahwah is your Name.
8 Throw down their strength in your power, and bring down their force in your wrath. They purposed to defile your sanctuary, to pollute the tabernacle where your glorious Name rests, and to cast down the horn of your altar with sword.
9 Behold their pride, and send your wrath upon their heads. Give into my hand, who am a widow, the power I conceive.
10 Smite the servant with the prince by the deceit of my lips, and the prince with the servant. Break down their stateliness by the hand of a woman.
11 Your power does not stand in multitude, nor your might in strong men. You are a Father of the afflicted, a helper of the oppressed, an upholder of the weak, a protector of the forlorn, a savior of those who are without hope.
12 I pray you, I pray you, O Father of my father, Father of the inheritance of Yisrayah, Father of the heavens and earth, Creator of the waters, King of every creature, hear my prayer.
13 Make my speech and deceit to be their wound and stripe, who purposed cruel things against your covenant, your hallowed house, against the top of Zion, and against the house of the possession of your children.
14 Make every nation and tribe to acknowledge that you are the Father of all power and might, that there is no other but you who protects the people of Yisrayah.

Chapter 10
1 She ceased to cry to the Father of Yisrayah, and made an end of all these words.
2 She rose where she had fallen down, called her maid, and went down into the house where she abode in the sabbath days, and in her feast days.
3 She pulled off the sackcloth which she had on, put off the garments of her widowhood, washed her body all over with water, anointed herself with precious ointment, braided the hair of her head, put on a tire upon it, and put on her garments of gladness, with which she was clad during the life of Manasses her husband.
4 She took sandals upon her feet, put about her her bracelets, her chains, her rings, her earrings, all her ornaments, and decked herself bravely, to allure the eyes of all men that should see her.
5 She gave her maid a bottle of wine, a cruse of oil, a bag filled with parched corn, lumps of figs, and with fine bread. She folded all these things together, and laid them upon her.
6 They went forth to the gate of the city of Bethulia, and found Ozias, the ancients of the city, Chabris, and Charmis standing there.
7 When they saw that her countenance was altered, and her apparel was changed, they wondered at her beauty very greatly. They said to her:
8 Yahwah, the Father of our fathers, give you favor. Accomplish your enterprizes to the glory of the children of Yisrayah, and to the exaltation of Yerusalem. Then they worshipped Yahwah.
9 She said to them: Command the gates of the city to be opened to me, that I may go forth to accomplish the things of which you spoke with me. So they commanded the young men to open to her, as she spoke.
10 When they did so, Yahudith went out, she, and her maid with her. The men of the city looked after her until she was gone down the mountain, till she passed the valley, and could see her no more.
11 They went straight forth in the valley. The first watch of the Assyrians met her,
12 took her, and asked her: Of what people are you? Where do you come from? Where do you go? She said: I am a woman of the Hebrews, I fled from them. They shall be given you to be consumed.
13 I am coming before Holofernes the chief captain of your army, to declare words of truth. I will show him a way, where he shall go, and win all the hill country without losing the body or life of any one of his men.
14 When the men heard her words, and beheld her countenance, they wondered greatly at her beauty, and said to her:
15 You saved your life, in that you hurried to come down to the presence of our lord. Come to his tent, some of us shall conduct you until they deliver you to his hands.
16 When you stand before him, do not be afraid in your heart. Show to him according to your word, and he will treat you well.
17 They chose out of them a hundred men to accompany her and her maid, and they brought her to the tent of Holofernes.
18 There was a concourse throughout all the camp, for her coming was noised among the tents. They came about her, as she stood outside the tent of Holofernes, till they told him of her.
19 They wondered at her beauty, and admired the children of Yisrayah because of her. Everyone said to his neighbor: Who would despise this people that have among them such women? Surely it is not good that one man of them be left who being let go might deceive the whole earth.
20 Those who lay near Holofernes went out, and all his servants, and they brought her into the tent.
21 Holofernes rested upon his bed under a canopy, which was woven with purple, gold, emeralds, and precious stones.
22 So they showed her to him, he came out before his tent with silver lamps going before him.
23 When Yahudith was come before him and his servants they all marvelled at the beauty of her countenance. She fell down upon her face, and did reverence to him. His servants took her up.

Chapter 11
1 Holofernes said to her: Woman, be of good comfort, do not fear in your heart. I never hurt any that was willing to serve Nabuchodonosor, the king of all the earth.
2 If your people that dwell in the mountains had not set light by me, I would not have lifted up my spear against them. They did these things to themselves.
3 Tell me why you fled from them, and came to us. You are come for safeguard. Be of good comfort, you shall live this night, and hereafter.
4 None shall hurt you, but will treat you well, as they do the servants of king Nabuchodonosor my lord.
5 Yahudith said to him: Receive the words of your servant, allow your handmaid to speak in your presence, I will declare no lie to my lord this night.
6 If you will follow the words of your handmaid, Yahwah will bring the thing to pass by you perfectly, my lord shall not fail of his purposes.
7 Nabuchodonosor king of all the earth lives, and as his power lives, who sent you for the upholding of every living thing. Not only men serve him by you, but also the beasts of the field, the cattle, and the fowls of the air, live by your power under Nabuchodonosor and all his house.
8 We heard of your wisdom and your policies. It is reported in all the earth that you are excellent in all the kingdom, mighty in knowledge, and wonderful in feats of war.
9 Concerning the matter which Achior spoke in your council, we heard his words. The men of Bethulia saved him, and he declared to them all that he spoke to you.
10 O lord and governor, respect his word, lay it up in your heart, for it is true. Our nation can not be punished, nor can sword prevail against them, except they sin against their Father.
11 So that my lord not be defeated and frustrate of his purpose, death is even now fallen upon them. Their sin overtakes them when they provoke their Father to anger whensoever they do that which is not fit to be done.
12 Their victuals fail them, all their water is scant. They have determined to lay hands upon their cattle, and purposed to consume all those things Yahwah forbids them to eat by His laws.
13 They are resolved to spend the firstfruits of the the tenths of wine and oil, which they had sanctified and reserved for the priests that serve in Yerusalem before the face of our Father, the which things it is not lawful for any of the people so much as to touch with their hands.
14 They sent some to Yerusalem, they who dwell there did the like, to bring them a licence from the senate.
15 When they bring them word, they will quickly do it, and they shall be given to you to be destroyed the same day.
16 I your handmaid, knowing all this, fled from their presence. Yahwah sent me to work things with you, by which all the earth shall be astonished, whosoever shall hear it.
17 Your servant is religious, and serves the Father of heaven day and night. My lord, I will remain with you. Your servant will go out by night into the valley, and I will pray to Yahwah. He will tell me when they commit their sins.
18 I will come and show it to you. Then you will go forth with all your army, and there will be none of them that can resist you.
19 I will lead you through the midst of Yahudah, until you come before Yerusalem. I will set your throne in the midst of it. You shall drive them as sheep that have no shepherd, and a dog shall not so much as open his mouth at you. These things were told me according to my foreknowledge, they were declared to me, and I am sent to tell you.
20 Her words pleased Holofernes, and all his servants. They marvelled at her wisdom, and said:
21 There is not such a woman from one end of the earth to the other, both for beauty of face, and wisdom of words.
22 Holofernes said to her: Yahwah did well to send you before the people, that strength might be in our hands and destruction upon those who lightly regard my lord.
23 You are both beautiful in your countenance, and witty in your words. Surely, if you do as you spoke your Father shall be my Father, you shall dwell in the house of king Nabuchodonosor, and shall be renowned through the whole earth.

Chapter 12
1 He commanded to bring her in where his plate was set, bade that they should prepare for her of his own meats, and that she should drink of his own wine.
2 Yahudith said: I will not eat of it, unless there be an offence. Provision shall be made for me of the things that I brought.
3 Holofernes said to her: If your provision should fail, how should we give you the like? Ihere are none with us of your nation.
4 Yahudith said to him: As your soul lives, my lord, your handmaid shall not spend those things I have, before Yahwah work by my hand the things He determined.
5 The servants of Holofernes brought her into the tent, and she slept till midnight. She arose when it was toward the morning watch,
6 and sent to Holofernes, saying: Let my lord command that your handmaid may go forth to prayer.
7 Holofernes commanded his guard that they should not stop her. Thus she abode in the camp three days. She went out in the night into the valley of Bethulia, and washed herself in a fountain of water by the camp.
8 When she came out, she begged Yahwah Father of Yisrayah to direct her way to the raising up of the children of her people.
9 She came in clean, and remained in the tent until she ate her meat at evening.
10 In the fourth day Holofernes made a feast to his own servants only, and called none of the officers to the banquet.
11 He said to Bagoas the eunuch, who had charge over all that he had: Go, persuade this Hebrew woman who is with you, that she come to us, and eat and drink with us.
12 Lo, it will be a shame for our person if we let such a woman go, not having had her company. If we do not draw her to us, she will laugh us to scorn.
13 Bagoas went from the presence of Holofernes, came to her, and he said: Let this fair damsel not fear to come to my lord, to be honored in his presence, drink wine, be merry with us, and be made this day as one of the daughters of the Assyrians, who serve in the house of Nabuchodonosor.
14 Yahudith said to him: Who am I, that I should gainsay my lord? I will speedily do whatsoever pleases him, it shall be my joy to the day of my death.
15 She arose, and decked herself with her apparel and all her woman's attire. Her maid went and laid soft skins on the ground for her over against Holofernes, which she received of Bagoas for her daily use, that she might sit and eat upon them.
16 When Yahudith came in and sat down, Holofernes was ravished with her in his heart. His mind was moved, and he greatly desired her company. He waited a time to deceive her, from the day that he saw her.
17 Holofernes said to her: Drink now, and be merry with us.
18 Yahudith said: I will drink now, my lord, because my life is magnified in me this day more than all the days since I was born.
19 She took and ate and drank before him what her maid prepared.
20 Holofernes took great delight in her, and drank more wine than he had drunk at any time in one day since he was born.

Chapter 13
1 His servants made haste to depart when the evening was come. Bagoas shut his tent outside, and dismissed the waiters from the presence of his lord. They went to their beds, for they were all weary, because the feast was long.
2 Yahudith was left alone in the tent, and Holofernes lying alone upon his bed, filled with wine.
3 Yahudith commanded her maid to stand outside her bedchamber, and to wait for her. Coming forth, as she did daily, she said she would go forth to her prayers, and she spoke to Bagoas according to the purpose.
4 So all went forth and none was left in the bedchamber, neither little nor great. Standing by his bed, Yahudith said in her heart: O Yahwah, Father of all power, look at this present upon the works of my hands for the exaltation of Yerusalem.
5 Now is the time to help your inheritance, to execute your enterprizes to the destruction of the enemies which are risen against us.
6 She came to the pillar of the bed, which was at Holofernes' head, and took down his sword from there.
7 She approached to his bed, took hold of the hair of his head, and said: Strengthen me, O Yahwah Father of Yisrayah, this day.
8 She smote twice upon his neck with all her might, and she took away his head from him.
9 His body tumbled down from the bed, and pulled down the canopy from the pillars. She went forth, and gave Holofernes' head to her maid.
10 She put it in her bag of meat. They both went together according to their custom to prayer. When they passed the camp, they compassed the valley, went up the mountain of Bethulia, and came to the gates of it.
11 From afar off Yahudith said to the watchmen at the gate: Open, open the gate. Yahwah, even our Father, is with us, to show His power in Yerusalem, and His forces against the enemy, as He did today.
12 When the men of her city heard her voice, they hurried to go down to the gate of their city, and they called the elders of the city.
13 They all ran together, both small and great, for it was strange to them that she was come. They opened the gate, received them, made a fire for a light, and stood round about them.
14 She said to them with a loud voice: Praise, praise Yahwah, praise Yahwah, I say. He did not take away His mercy from the house of Yisrayah. He destroyed our enemies tonight by my hands.
15 She took the head out of the bag, showed it, and said to them: Behold! The head of Holofernes, the chief captain of the army of Assur! Behold the canopy where he did lie in his drunkenness. Yahwah smote him by the hand of a woman.
16 As Yahwah lives, who kept me in my way that I went, my countenance deceived him to his destruction, and yet he did not commit sin with me, to defile and shame me.
17 All the people were wonderfully astonished, bowed themselves, worshipped Yahwah, and said with one accord: Blessed be you, O our Father, who this day brought to nothing the enemies of your people.
18 Ozias said to her: O daughter, blessed are you of the most high Father above all the women upon the earth. Blessed be Yahwah, who created the heavens and the earth, who directed you to the cutting off of the head of the chief of our enemies.
19 Your confidence shall not depart from the heart of men who remember the power of Yahwah, forever.
20 Yahwah turn these things to you for a perpetual praise, to visit you in good things. You did not spare your life for the affliction of our nation, you revenged our ruin, walking a straight way before our Father. All the people said: So be it, so be it.

Chapter 14
1 Yahudith said to them: Hear me now, my brothers. Take this head, hang it upon the highest place of your walls.
2 As soon as the morning appears, and the sun shall come forth upon the earth, everyone take his weapons. Every valiant man go forth out of the city, and set you a captain over them, as though you would go down into the field toward the watch of the Assyrians. But do not go down.
3 They shall take their armor, go into their camp, raise up the captains of the army of Assur, and run to the tent of Holofernes, but shall not find him. Fear shall fall upon them, and they shall flee before your face.
4 You, and all that inhabit the coast of Yisrayah, shall pursue them, and overthrow them as they go.
5 Before you do these things, call Achior the Ammonite, that he may see and know him who despised the house of Yisrayah, and that sent him to us as it were to his death.
6 They called Achior out of the house of Ozias. He came, and saw the head of Holofernes in a man's hand in the assembly of the people. He fell down on his face, and his spirit failed.
7 When they recovered him, he fell at Yahudith's feet, reverenced her, and said: Blessed are you in all the tabernacles of Yahudah. All nations shall be astonished hearing your name.
8 Now tell me all the things that you did in these days. Yahudith declared to him in the midst of the people all that she did, from the day she went forth until that hour she spoke to them.
9 When she left off speaking, the people shouted with a loud voice, and made a joyful noise in their city.
10 When Achior saw all that the Father of Yisrayah did, he believed in Yahwah greatly, circumcised the flesh of his foreskin, and was joined to the house of Yisrayah to this day.
11 As soon as the morning arose, they hung the head of Holofernes upon the wall. Every man took his weapons, and they went forth by bands to the straits of the mountain.
12 When the Assyrians saw them, they sent to their leaders, who came to their captains and tribunes, and to every one of their rulers.
13 They came to Holofernes' tent, and said to him that had the charge of all his things: Waken our lord. The slaves are bold to come down against us to battle, that they may be utterly destroyed.
14 Bagoas went in, and knocked at the door of the tent, for he thought he slept with Yahudith.
15 Because none answered, he opened it, went into the bedchamber, and found him cast upon the floor dead, his head taken from him.
16 He cried with a loud voice, with weeping, sighing, a mighty cry, and tore his garments.
17 He went into the tent where Yahudith lodged. When he did not find her, he leaped out to the people, and cried:
18 These slaves dealt treacherously. One woman of the Hebrews brought shame upon the house of king Nabuchodonosor. Behold, Holofernes lies upon the ground without a head.
19 When the captains of the Assyrian army heard these words, they tore their coats. Their minds were wonderfully troubled, there was a cry, a very great noise throughout the camp.

Chapter 15
1 When those who were in the tents heard, they were astonished at the thing that was done.
2 Fear and trembling fell upon them, so there was no man that dared abide in the sight of his neighbor. Rushing out all together, they fled into every way of the plain, and of the hill country.
3 Those who camped in the mountains round about Bethulia fled away. The children of Yisrayah, every one that was a warrior among them, rushed out upon them.
4 Ozias sent to Betomasthem, to Bebai, Chobai, Cola, and to all the coasts of Yisrayah, such as should tell the things that were done, and that all should rush forth upon their enemies to destroy them.
5 When the children of Yisrayah heard it, they all fell upon them with one consent, and killed them unto Chobai. Likewise also those who came from Yerusalem, from all the hill country (for men told them what things were done in the camp of their enemies), those who were in Galaad, and in Galilee, chased them with a great slaughter until they were past Damascus and the borders of it.
6 The residue that dwelt at Bethulia fell upon the camp of Assur, spoiled them, and were greatly enriched.
7 The children of Yisrayah who returned from the slaughter had that which remained. The villages and the cities, that were in the mountains and in the plain, got many spoils, for the multitude was very great.
8 Joacim the high priest, and the ancients of the children of Yisrayah that dwelt in Yerusalem, came to behold the good things that Yahwah showed to Yisrayah, to see Yahudith, and to salute her.
9 When they came to her, they blessed her with one accord, and said to her: You are the exaltation of Yerusalem, you are the great glory of Yisrayah, you are the great rejoicing of our nation.
10 You did all these things by your hand. You did much good to Yisrayah, and Yahwah is pleased. Blessed be you of the Almighty Yahwah for evermore. All the people said: So be it.
11 The people spoiled the camp the space of thirty days. They gave Holofernes' tent to Yahudith, all his plates, beds, vessels, and all his stuff. She took it, laid it on her mule, made her carts ready, and laid them there.
12 Then all the women of Yisrayah ran together to see her, blessed her, and made a dance among them for her. She took branches in her hand, and gave to the women that were with her.
13 They put a garland of olive upon her, and her maid that was with her. She went before all the people in the dance, leading all the women. All the men of Yisrayah followed with garlands in their armor, and with songs in their mouths.

Chapter 16
1 Yahudith began to sing this thanksgiving in all Yisrayah, and all the people sang after her this song of praise.
2 Yahudith said: Begin to my Father with timbrels, sing to Yahwah with cymbals, tune to Him a new psalm, exalt Him, and call upon His Name.
3 Yahwah breaks the battles. Among the camps, in the midst of the people, He delivered me out of the hands of those who persecuted me.
4 Assur came out of the mountains from the north, he came with ten thousands of his army, the multitude of which stopped the rivers, their horsemen covered the hills.
5 He bragged that he would burn up my borders, kill my young men with the sword, dash the sucking children against the ground, make my infants as a prey, and my virgins as a spoil.
6 But the Almighty Yahwah disappointed them by the hand of a woman.
7 The mighty one did not fall by the young men, nor did the sons of the Titans smite him, nor high giants set upon him. Yahudith the daughter of Merari weakened him with the beauty of her countenance.
8 She put off the garment of her widowhood for the exaltation of those who were oppressed in Yisrayah, anointed her face with ointment, bound her hair in a tire, and took a linen garment, to deceive him.
9 Her sandals ravished his eyes, her beauty took his mind prisoner, and the sword passed through his neck.
10 The Persians quaked at her boldness, and the Medes were daunted at her hardiness.
11 My afflicted shouted for joy, and my weak ones cried aloud. They were astonished, lifted up their voices, but they were overthrown.
12 The sons of the damsels pierced them through, and wounded them as fugitives children. They perished by the battle of Yahwah.
13 I will sing to Yahwah a new song. O Yahwah, you are great and glorious, wonderful in strength, and invincible.
14 Let all creatures serve you. You spoke, and they were made. You sent forth your spirit, and it created them. There is none that can resist your voice.
15 The mountains shall be moved from their foundations with the waters, the rocks shall melt as wax at your presence, yet you are merciful to those who fear you.
16 All sacrifice is too little for a sweet savor to you, all the fat is not sufficient for your burnt offering, but he who fears Yahwah is great at all times.
17 Woe to the nations that rise up against my kindred! Yahwah Almighty will take vengeance of them in the day of judgment, putting fire and worms in their flesh. They shall feel them, and weep forever.
18 As soon as they entered into Yerusalem, they worshipped Yahwah. As soon as the people were purified, they offered their burnt offerings, their free offerings, and their gifts.
19 Yahudith dedicated all the stuff of Holofernes which the people gave her. She gave the canopy which she took out of his bedchamber for a gift to Yahwah.
20 The people continued feasting in Yerusalem before the sanctuary for the space of three months, and Yahudith remained with them.
21 After this time everyone returned to his own inheritance. Yahudith went to Bethulia, remained in her own possession, and was in her time honorable in all the country.
22 Many desired her, but none knew her all the days of her life after Manasses her husband was dead, and was gathered to his people.
23 She increased more and more in honor, became old in her husband's house, being an hundred and five years old, and made her maid free. She died in Bethulia, and they buried her in the cave of her husband Manasses.
24 The house of Yisrayah lamented her seven days. Before she died, she distributed her goods to all those who were nearest of kindred to Manasses her husband, and to those who were the nearest of her kindred.
25 There was none who made the children of Yisrayah afraid in the days of Yahudith, nor a long time after her death.

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