Fourth Book Of Kings (2 Kings)

FOURTH BOOK OF KINGS (2 KINGS): EXPLANATORY NOTES


ABBREVIATIONS: CA: Gower, Confessio Amantis; CM: Cursor mundi; CT: Chau­cer, Canterbury Tales; DBTEL: A Dic­tionary of Biblical Tradition in English Literature, ed. Jeffrey; HS: Peter Comes­tor, Historia Scholastica, cited by book and chapter, followed by Patrologia Latina column in paren­theses; K: Kalén-Ohlander edition; MED: Middle English Dictionary; NOAB: New Oxford Annotated Bible; OED: Oxford English Dictionary; OFP: Old French Paraphrase, British Library, MS Egerton 2710, cited by folio and column; Whiting: Whiting, Proverbs, Sentences, and Pro­verbial Phrases; York: York Plays, ed. Beadle. For other abbreviations, see Textual Notes.

11913–16 The poet is probably thinking of Romans 15:4, though similar statements by Paul can be found in 1 Corinthians 9:9 and 2 Timothy 3:16.

12001–02 Thore in that cyté wonned a man / that Moyses Law wold never lett. In 4 Kings (2 Kings) 1:13, the third individual sent to fetch Elijah is not, as here, a loyal Jew sent alone. Rather, he is another captain, leading a third company of fifty men. The poet’s source for this change is unknown.

12006 within his sell whore he was sett. The Bible specifically describes Elijah as sitting atop a hill (4 Kings [2 Kings] 1:9), a location followed by HS 4 Reg. 1 (1387). The poet’s alteration from hilltop to a cell — a small, secluded dwelling — brings Elijah into the hagiographic tradition of hermit saints living in solitude in the wilderness.

12053–55 Enoch and Elijah, both taken up by God without dying (for the account of the former, see Genesis 5:22–24), were the source of much postbiblical commentary, especially among Christian writers who could not rationalize admittance to Heaven without acceptance of Christ as God — an impossibility for two men who lived long before the birth of Jesus of Nazareth. These writers eventually came to agreement that the two men had been transported to the Earthly Paradise where they awaited Christ’s Second Coming. As early as the time of Justin Martyr in the second century, Enoch and Elijah were thus identified as the Two Witnesses of Apocalypse, two mysterious figures who will appear at the end-times to witness for Christ in the final battle against the Antichrist. This identification grew more secure in the Middle Ages; it is accepted essentially as dogma, for instance, in the twelfth-century Glossa Ordinaria. Building out of Apocalypse 11:3–13, it was said in these traditions that during the Apocalypse Enoch and Elijah would preach against the Antichrist and convert the Jews; the Antichrist would then kill the two witnesses, who would willingly offer up their lives so that they could participate fully in the love of Christ by being resurrected into their “purified” forms. It was thought that they would, indeed, be resurrected three and a half days later, and thereafter taken into Heaven just prior to the Second Coming. Though reference to this legend is not made in HS, the stories of Enoch and Elijah were very much a part of the Middle English literary landscape, appearing in works as widespread as CM and The Pricke of Conscience to performative works like the mystery plays (see especially Chester’s “Harrowing of Hell,” “Prophecies of Antichrist,” and “Antichrist” plays).

12072 two hunderth shepe be yere. 4 Kings (2 Kings) 3:4 and HS 4 Reg. 4 (1388) both number the tribute as 200,000 sheep in total. This much smaller (and, frankly, more realistic) number also appears in OFP 98a.

12129–32 Similar comments about the identical names but separate identities of the kings of Israel and Judah at this point in the narrative occur in HS 4 Reg. 1 (1387) and OFP 98d.

12134 Godolé. See note to line 11670.

12158 my husband . . . Obedias. The husband is not named in the Bible (4 Kings [2 Kings] 4), but compare 3 Kings (1 Kings) 18:3 and stanza 927. HS 4 Reg. 5 (1389), gives the name here: “uxor scilicet Abdiæ,” an identification also found in OFP 99a: “Femme ert Obedias et sa muiller.” These identifications appear to derive ultimately from Josephus, Jewish Antiquities 9.4.2.

12174–75 my sun that is full fayr and free, / Thei say thei sall have hym forfett. In 4 Kings (2 Kings) 4:1, the widow is threatened with the taking of two children into slavery, not one. So, too, HS 4 Reg. 5 (1389).

12355 flesch. K suggests that in order to maintain the rhyme flesch should be pronounced “fless,” as if sch = s (1:cxxviii). The end-rhyme would thus be only orthographically broken, perhaps evidence that the text of this Yorkshire poem (where –sh appears as –s; see, e.g., Joas for Joash in line 13619) has passed through more southern scribal hands. Note, however, that the current text is consistent in its presentation of flesch(e) in all positions, even appearing to demand an –sh pronunciation for rhyme at lines 12046, 48 (flesch : fresch). Another explanation, therefore, might be that the palatization of s to sh is underway in the poet’s own dialect, in which case the present line may simply be an off-rhyme.

12479–80 Thus may men lyghtly lere / forto trow wemens tales. Naaman’s conclusion that his experience can serve as a pedagogical exercise for all men who might think to believe the words of women is neither biblical nor from Comestor (HS 4 Reg. 8 [1391]). It appears the Paraphrase-poet has instead added this embellishment to further underscore the positive actions of Naaman’s loyal Israelite serving-girl, whose central role in revealing God’s power to the Aramean otherwise goes largely unnoted.

12679–80 In 4 Kings (2 Kings) 6:6, the axhead is retrieved when Elisha throws a stick into the water, which miraculously causes the iron to float. So, too, HS 4 Reg. 9 (1392). Compare OFP 102a.

12761–64 Then forto loke he led his knave . . . for baners and for basnettes bryght. These lines are difficult to construe, even more difficult to get to match the biblical source. In 4 Kings (2 Kings) 6:16–17, the theme of vision in this story is underscored in the fact that the servant is pointedly unable to see Elisha’s army until the prophet prays that his eyes be opened. Only then is the army revealed: made up of horses and chariots of fire (an image hearkening back to the taking of Elijah into Heaven).

12802 thei wend all had bene feld. The appearance of feld here, echoing back to line 12734 and the plan to assassinate Elisha, serves as a further marker of divine justice: the Arameans have, both narratively and orthographically, had the tables turned on them.

12821 Sauns fayle. While it is true that this particular French expression, and a few others like it, had by the time of the composition of the Paraphrase become common in English, it is hard not to wonder if there might not be subtle political points being made in its usage. The only other appearance of the phrase in the poem is at line 8721, where it is spoken by Absolom.

12929–32 The prophett that wyll noyght for us pray . . . sall be done to dede this day / for all the tales that he has told. 4 Kings (2 Kings) 6:31 gives no explanation why the king’s wrath turns against Elisha, but Josephus comments that this is because Elisha failed to “pray to God to provide them some exit and way of escape out of the miseries with which they were surrounded” (Jewish Antiquities 9.4.3), a detail picked up by Comestor. The blameworthy tales Elisha has told (line 12932) would thus seem to be either his statements of being both in God’s favor and in favor of Israel, or, sarcastically, his lack of words before God.

13002 Arabys. The poet thus replaces the Hittites of 4 Kings (2 Kings) 7:6, who would be unfamiliar to his audience.

13035 spyre and spye. K (3:102) notes the same phrase in Gawain, line 2093.

13075 Evyn in the entryng was he slayn. Implied here, but specified in 4 Kings (2 Kings) 7:20 and HS 4 Reg. 11 (1394), is the detail that the unbeliever is trampled to death by the people as they seek out the food.

13085–86 For als He made both erth and ayre / and with His Word all wardly wyght. I have capitalized Word in accordance with the extended Christological readings of John 1:1, which would regard the “active” half of God’s speeches in Genesis as the second person of the Trinity. This would seem very much in keeping with the theological position of the Paraphrase-poet, who makes clear his own Trinitarian leanings.

13109–10 Of holy men then here wyll He / that for us profers ther prayer. While one could read this as referring to either the intercession of saints (to which we might compare the poet’s earlier praise of Mary and her “mediacy” in our salvation — lines 7–8) or the efficacy of confession (to which we might compare Samuel’s earlier comments on the necessity of maintaining a priesthood — lines 5513–14), the poet seems to intend both. In the following lines he deems it “gud wysdome” (line 13111) to send prayers to God via the saints, and that we should, here on earth, listen to those we know are wise (which has all the ring of a plug for the priesthood). These positions, it must be noted, would stand very much against those of Wycliffe and the Lollards.

13131–40 In both the Bible and HS, the story of the siege of Samaria is followed by the story of the Shunammite woman whose lands are restored to her by Elisha’s actions (which is a continuation of 4 Kings [2 Kings] 4:8–37). This story includes Gehazi and ignores his curse of leprosy (and his implied exile), which earlier occur in 5:27. It may be the case, then, that the Par­a­phrase-poet recognized the story as potentially out of chronology and omit­ted it. For certain, his omission of the story allows him to dwell on the after­math of the siege by tying Ben-hadad’s illness to his defeat, a connec­tion not made in the Bible but appearing in Josephus, Jewish Antiquities 9.4.6, whence it appears in HS 4 Reg. 12 (1394).

13163–64 Els may thou mater gyf / to do hym more dysese. This original line is a clever one: on the surface it reads simple enough, stating that to tell the king the truth — that he will soon die — would cause him more discomfort than a lie. In light of Hazael’s subsequent regicidal actions, however, it also carries the weight of foreshadowing on the part of the prophet: to do other than talking to the king would be causing him more discomfort. See explanatory note to lines 13193–94.

13193–94 yll lechyng for hym he layd / so that his lyf last not lang. Ill-doctoring, indeed: 4 Kings (2 Kings) 8:15 tells how Hazael, having relieved the king’s anxieties by assuring him of a full recovery, spread a wet cloth over the king’s face and smo­thered him. Thus, as reported in line 13202, Hazael makes himself king of Syria.

13209 Godolé. See note to line 11670.

13227–29 Sant Elysew . . . Ely. Both the Bible (2 Chronicles 21:12) and Josephus (Jewish Antiquities 9.5.2) agree in identifying the prophet-writer of the rebuke as Elijah, and are silent regarding Elisha’s possible involvement. This would be difficult to correlate with biblical timelines, which record Elijah’s ascension as occurring about four years earlier. Comestor, apparently aware of this chronological issue, alters his text to term Elisha the writer and is silent about Elijah’s possible involvement (HS 4 Reg. 13 [1395]). The Paraphrase takes an intriguing middle ground that remains true to the Bible while maintaining the chronology: the letter is a prophecy of Elijah, written before his ascension and delivered, years later, by Elisha (see OFP 105c).

13263 With Ethyopes and Arabyse. HS 4 Reg. 13 (1395) says nothing of Ethiopians, while 2 Chronicles 21:16 identifies the advancing Arabs as being those who live near the Ethiopians. The Paraphrase-poet follows OFP 105c, however, in identifying them equally as attackers.

13266 the eldest, Occozias. 2 Chronicles 21:17 and 22:1 call Ahaziah his youngest son. HS 4 Reg. 13 (1395) and OFP 105d do not mention his age. The poet, it seems, has let an expectation of primogeniture dictate his reading of the text.

13278 Kyng Benedab. Both copies of the Paraphrase (and its other editors) agree on the reading here, which follows OFP 105d in identifying the besieged king as Ben-hadad. This is surely a mistake, however. The poet told the story of Ben-hadad’s death less than a hundred lines earlier, along with the information that Hazael succeeded him (lines 13129–13200). Likewise, the primary authoritative sources (see, e.g., 4 Kings [2 Kings] 9:14 and 2 Chronicles 22:5), identify the besieged king as Hazael.

13380 Godolé. See note to line 11670.

13427 Sant Elysew. Both copies of the Paraphrase (and its other editors) read thus, which appears to be a mistake original to the poet. The prophecy was made by Elijah, as rightly referenced in 4 Kings (2 Kings) 9:36 and in both HS 4 Reg. 14 (1396) and OFP 106c.

13442 sexty chylder. 4 Kings (2 Kings) 10:1 gives the number of sons as seventy, as does HS 4 Reg. 15 (1396). The Paraphrase-poet here follows something like OFP 107a.

13532 Byschop Joiada. Jehoiada cannot, of course, be a bishop (a Christian title) in the context of his Jewish milieu. The decision to term him thus, rather than the more historical “priest,” is a means for the poet to help his readers relate to the Old Testament.

13533 his wyf. That the woman who helps Jehoiada to hide the child is the priest’s wife is a detail not from 4 Kings (2 Kings) but from 2 Chronicles 22:11, where she is also named Jehoshabeath.

13677–78 yeres aght and fawrty / regned he. According to 2 Chronicles 24:1, Joash reigned for forty years, coming to the throne at age seven (so, too, Josephus, Jewish Antiquities 9.8.4, and HS 4 Reg. 16 [1398]).

13681 Long aftur this so yt befell. The poet skips the reign of Jehoahaz of Israel, son of Jehu, to go to his son named, Joash.

13758 thryty thowssand. 4 Kings (2 Kings) gives no number to the size of Amaziah’s army, while 2 Chronicles 25:5 gives the count as 300,000 (so, too, Josephus, Jewish Antiquities 9.9.1). The number here appears to come from OFP 109d.

13767 A thowsand men. Judah’s hiring of a mercenary army from Israel is noted in 2 Chronicles 25:26, where the number of men given is 100,000, which is followed by HS 4 Reg. 19 (1399) and Josephus, Jewish Antiquities 9.9.1. The source for the Paraphrase-poet’s number is not known.

13782 Moabyse. 4 Kings (2 Kings) 14:7 and 2 Chronicles 25:14 refer to his target as Edom and the Edomites. So, too, HS 4 Reg. 19 (1400) and OFP 109d. The poet’s source is unknown.

13824 Ozi. 4 Kings (2 Kings) 15 names him Azarias, but 2 Chronicles 26 calls him Ozias (Uzziah). I have followed the latter not only for its closeness to the Middle English, but also for its clearer differentiation from other characters of the same name.

13825–14004 This digression into the story of Jonas (based on the book of Jonas) is interpolated into the account at 4 Kings (2 Kings) 14:25. Comestor did not include Jonas in HS, so the poet is perhaps following something like OFP (see Bonnard, Les Traductions de la Bible, p. 102, and Baker, Die versifizierte Übersetzung, p. 38) as both a source of the story and its interpolation here. Jonas’ story is also famously told in Middle English in the poem Patience.

13862 Cecile. Jonas 1:3 gives their destination as Tarshish. The Paraphrase-poet has apparently copied over the error from OFP 110c, which reads “cesile.” K (3:125) explains the discrepancy: “Tarshish, traditionally located in Spain, here probably identified with Tarsus, Lat. T(h)arsus or T(h)arsi, capital of Cilicia. This name was easily confused with Sicily.” Compare, too, Baker, Die versifizierte Übersetzung, p. 38.

13921 Your Savyour thus has me send. This slip into a Trinitarian reading of God is, as far as I can tell, original to the Paraphrase. It is striking not only for the paucity of Christ references in the poem but also for the clever way it sets up the parallel between Jonas’ experience and Christ’s (see note to lines 13965–68).

13927–28 To Hell your cyté sall dyscend, / als other fyfe hath done before. The parallel being made, apparently original to the poet, is to the destruction by God of Sodom and Gomorrah and the other cities of the Pentapolis (see note to lines 433– 35, above).

13965–68 As the prophet Jonas / was thre days in the se, / So Cryst in erthe here was / bered be days thre. This parallel between Jonas’ three days in the whale and Christ’s three-day burial has its basis in Matthew 12:40 and does not appear in OFP. It does, however, have a long tradition in exegesis; see, for example, its appearance in the Biblia Pauperum (plate .g.). Interestingly, L does not include the parallel, reading instead: “Thus this prophet Ionas / was come vnto Ninive. / And thurgh it gun he pas / prechand be days thre.”

14012 Ozi. See note to line 13824.

14077–88 The Paraphrase-poet completes the books of Kings with a stanza informing his audience that Uzziah’s pride and punishment ought to be a warning against those who would question the Church and try to take on those tasks meant for its ordained churchmen. One would be hard-pressed not to see in this a rebuke of reformative movements like those associated with Lollardy.

14088b EXPLICIT LIBRI REGUM. Not hardly. The poet has paraphrased up to 4 Kings (2 Kings) 15:7, leaving him some ten chapters shy of completing the fourth and final book. Surprisingly, there is no indication that this material, which includes such important and fascinating stories as the Assyrian conquest of Israel, the story of Sennacherib and Hezekiah, the reformations of Josiah, and the conquest of Judah by the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar, is missing. The majority of this material is found in HS, so one wonders at its absence here. Of perhaps no coincidence, OFP similarly breaks off from its own narrative near to this point, ending incomplete (in midcouplet) in the midst of the story of Ahaz, king of Judah (4 Kings 16). It may be that the Paraphrase-poet, knowing that OFP was soon to end and seeing nothing of concern in the few French lines remaining (which summarily relate a sequence of inconsequential kings in Israel and Judah), decided to wrap up his own narrative in a seemingly more “complete” fashion by turning to a final exemplum.


FOURTH BOOK OF KINGS (2 KINGS): TEXTUAL NOTES


ABBREVIATIONS: L: MS Longleat 257; H: Heuser edition (partial); K: Kalén-Ohlander edition; O: Ohlander’s corrigenda to K; P: Peck edition (partial); S: MS Selden Supra 52 (base text for this edition).

11905, 96 Lines indented to leave space for an initial capital; first letter of line 11905 written in the middle of the space.

11921 godes. So L, K. S: god.

11922 used. So L, K. S: useid.

11923 bun. S: corrected from bin.

11924 beld. S: frend beld.

11934 hymself. S: hym sell self.

11951 leves. So L, K. S: leue.

11955 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 111r): liber iiijus Regum.

11960 his. So L, K. S omits.

11962 this. So L, K. S: and this.

11967 has. S: has has.

11971 angred. So L, K. S: angard.

11973 Bot wyghtly. So L, K. S: wyttely.

11994 prophet. So S, L. K: prophett.

12005–08 Lines 12005–06 and 12007–08 are transposed in S and marked for correction in the margin.

12013 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 111v): liber iiijus Regum.

12017 se. So L, K. S: sent.

12020 we. So L, K. S: þou.

12021 We. So L, K. S: he.

12022 to. So L, K. S: forto.

12041 Joram. So L, K (ioran). S: Iotan.

12076 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 112r): no heading.

12086 and. So L, K. S omits.

12091–92 So L, K. S omits lines.

12097 mekyll. So L, K. S: myld.

12100 thei. So L. S, K: the.

12127 hys. So L, K. S: hym.

12131 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 112v): liber iiijus Regum.

12144 of. So L, K. S: þat fell of.

12145 then. So L, K. S omits.

12150 helpe. S: hes helpe.

12157 knew. So L, K. S: knaw.

12160 allas. So L, K. S: he was.

12164 whyls. S: wyhyls.

12168 fro. So L, K. S: for.

12169 seler. So L, K. S: soler.
sytt. So L, K. S: fytt.


12180 sytt. So L, K. S: flytt.

12187 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 113r): liber iiijus Regum.

12199 thou. So L, K. S: so.

12202 cover. So L, K. S: couerd.

12209–12 Lines 12209–10 and 12211–12 are transposed in S and marked for correction in the margin.

12225 hyr. So L, K. S omits.

12231 Chyld. So L, K. S: schyld.

12236 I. So L, K. S: þat.

12238 dyseve. So L, K. S: dysese.

12244 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 113v): no heading.

12246 wun. So L, K. S: went (inserted above the line).

12258 myschef. So K. L: myschieve. S: mysche.

12271 Marginalia in S (at left of fol. 113v): gofy or gosy (this may be the end of a phrase cut off in trimming).

12275 To. S: corrected from Th.

12278 fete. So L, K. S: fote.

12298 to. S: l to.

12301 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 114r): liber iiijus Regum.

12312 prophett. So L, K. S: prophe.

12319 Marginalia in S (at left of fol. 114r): Elysew.

12326 sytt. So L, K. S: titt.
S: line 12333 copied and then canceled after this line.


12337 Go. So L, K. S: so.

12341 dyd. S: dyd 3.

12349 of. S: o ser of.
Sarsynes. So K. S: sarsyns. L: Saresins.


12350 Benadab. So S. L, K: Benedab.

12351 prowes. So L, K. S: prows.

12357 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 114v): liber iiijus Regum.
grett. So L, K. S: a grett.


12364 was. S: a inserted above the line.

12370 that. So L, K. S: þer.

12377 unto. So L, K. S: to.

12378 lykyng. S: k lykyng.

12380 me. So L, K. S: þe.

12381 The. So L, K. S: he.

12391 lech ylk. So L, K. S: lech of ylk.

12395 sall. So L, K. S: self.

12396 thi. S: þat þi.

12398 S: line 12404 copied and then canceled, correct line inserted above.

12412 pyrry. S: y pyrry.

12413 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 115r): no heading.

12416 He. So L, K. S: whore he.

12421 So. So L, K. S: gone.

12436 to2. S: r to.

12441 er. So L, K. S: þe.

12443 hele. So L, K. S: he.

12451 bad. S: sayd bad.

12454 I. So L, K. S: þat I.

12462 space. So L, K. S: place.

12469 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 115v): liber iiijus Regum.

12474 helyd. So L, K. S: lelyd.

12476 wole. So L, K. S: wele.

12478 bete. So L, K. S: bote.

12489 gyfyn. So L, K. S: yfyn.

12496 cowrse. So S. L, K: course.

12500 fest. S: inserted above the line.

12513 may. So L, K. S: make.

12527 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 116r): no heading.

12547 heled. S: leh heled.

12569 his. S: inserted above canceled ser.

12574 bene. So L, K. S: haue bene.

12576 thy. So L, K. S: his.

12585 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 116v): no heading.

12587 do. S: inserted above the line.

12589 charge. So L, K. S: charged.
bad. So L, K. S: had.


12590 drewres. So L, K. S: drewrers.

12591 I hym. So L, K. S: yf I.

12592 thanke. So L, K. S: thynke.
of myn. So L, K. S: forto.
hele. S: I hele.


12599 have. So L, K. S: had.

12601 knave. So L, K. S omits.

12620 sede. So L, K. S: stede.

12623 mesellri. So L, K. S: mesell.

12640 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 117r): no heading.

12649 banke. So S. L, K: bank.

12650 bowand. So L, K. S: bownd.

12658 felows. So O. S, K: felews. L: fellays.

12668 becaws. So L, K. S: be caw.

12674 about. So L, K. S omits.
the. S: vnto þe.


12679 boyld. S: byl boyld.

12680 yrn. S: corrected from yrne. K: yrne.

12691 Joram. So L, K. S: þem.

12692 quayntyse. So L, K. S: quaynty.

12694 Joram. So L, K. S: Iordan.

12695 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 117v): no heading.

12698 kenest. So L, K. S omits.

12702 forto. So L, K. S: fort.

12706 fro. So K. L: for. S: frod.

12710 was1. So L, K. S omits.

12726, 28 These lines are transposed in L, with that in line 12726 altered to he. I have maintained the reading of S, despite my feeling that the original might well have followed L.

12729 Dotaym. So L, K. S: Dotan.

12733 go. So L, K. S omits.

12734 and. So L, K. S: and bad.

12741 Dataym. So L, K. S: Datan.

12744 sonderman. So L, K. S: sondran.

12746 in. So L, K. S omits.

12748 heuyd. So L, K. S: fete.

12750 Alas, alas. So L, K. S: als.
full. So L, K. S: fowle.


12753 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 118r): liber iiijus Regum.
sertes. So S. L, K: certes.
we be. So L, K. S: be we.


12760 ryght. S: r corrected from 3.

12763 stave. So L, K. S omits.

12769 of. So L, K. S omits.

12776 sone. So L, K. S: sum.

12787 we. So L, K. S: be.

12801 ware. So L, K. S: þei.

12806 prayd God to. So L, K. S: prayd to god.

12807 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 118v): liber iiijus Regum. De actes Elysew.

12819 kyng. So L, K. S omits.

12821 con. So K. S: þus he.
Sauns fayle. So L, K. S omits. Compare 727:9.


12836 lete. So S, L. K: lette.

12845 knyght. So L, K. S: kyng.

12864 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 119r): no heading.

12866 wo may. So L, K. S: wo men may.

12882 and. S: inserted above canceled of.

12894 shetyng and. So L, K. S: sewtyng.

12897 ware. S: g ware.

12902 ther. So L, K. S: oþer.

12916 for. So L, K. S: forto.

12917 Another. So L, K. S: And other.

12919 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 119v): no heading.

12930 us. So L, K. S omits.

12939 sent men. So L, K. S: omits.
to. So L, K. S: forto.


12940 come. So L, K. S omits.

12964 befor. So L, K. S: for.

12968 slyke. So L, K. S: skyke.

12969 prophet. So L, K. S: prophe.

12971 for. So L, K. S: for þat.

12975 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 120r): no heading.

12991 comys. So L, K. S: comyn.

12998 beld. S: altered from byld.

13002 Arabys. So L, K. S: armys.

13020 that. So L, K. S omits.

13022 trussed. So L, K. S: trassed.

13032 and. So L, K. S: bot.

13033 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 120v): no heading.
of. So L, K. S omits.


13035 this spech. So L, K. S omits.

13037 may. So L, K. S: make.
by. So L, K. S omits.


13042 als. S: inserted above canceled all.
the. S: when þe.


13053 vitaylyng. So L, K. S: waytyng.

13054 all. So L, K. S: of.

13057 sawes. So L, K. S: sanges.

13063 in fere. So L, K. S omits.

13078 he. S: þ he.

13083 That. S: Nat þat.

13085 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 121r): no heading.

13087 amend. So L, K. S omits.

13089 Who. So L, K. S: whoso.

13094 sayve. So S. L, K: save.

13114 are. So L, K. S: ware.

13117 forto. So L, K. S: fort.

13126 to forsake. So K. S: forto sake. L: forto forsake.

13129 forthir. So L, K. S: forþi.

13130 processe. So S, L. K: process.

13136 hym cover. So L, K. S: couer hym.

13140 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 121v): no heading.

13142 he angred. So L, K. S: þe Angor.

13144 take tressour. So L, K. S: take of his tressour.

13149 knew. So L, K. S: hew.

13152 his. So L, K. S omits.

13163 thou. So L, K. S: þe.

13170 con. So L, K. S: con hym.

13172 sorows. So L, K. S: sorow.

13178 this. So L, K. S: is.

13193 yll. S: inserted above canceled ylke.

13197 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 122r): liber iiijus Regum.

rewled. So L, K. S: saued.


13200 had. So L, K. S omits.

13202 ma. S: make.

13204 tyme. So L, K. S omits.

13205 Of. So L, K. S: And of.

13214 hym. So L, K. S omits.

13217 brethyr. So L. S, K: broþer.

13226 myght. So L, K. S: þat my3t.

13237 has. S: a inserted above the line.

13239 doos. So L, K. S omits.

13242 brethyr. So L. S, K: broþer.

13244 how. So L, K. S: hole.

13257 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 122v): no heading.

13272 lest. So L, K. S: left.

13289 that. So L, K. S: yt.

13291 had. So L, K. S: bad.

13293 Jezeraell. So L. S: ierusalem. K: Ie3erael.

13303 Jezeraell. So L, K. S: ierusalem.

13304 as. S: has as.

13305 So. So L, K. S: To.

13308 turn. So L, K. S: turm.

13313 ser. So L, K. S: of.

13314 con. So S. L, K: can.

13317 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 123r): no heading.

13321 kyn. So L, K. S: kyng.

13322 eld. S: n eld.

13326 scheld. So L, K. S: cheld.

13339 pepyll. S: ff pepyll.

13352 was. S: inserted above canceled I.

13358 wound. So L, K. S: wenyng.

13373 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 123v): no heading.

13374 men. So L, K. S: me.

13375 thrast. So L, K. S: trayst.

13382 Jezeraell. So L, K. S: Ieraraell.

13385 contrarye. So L, K. S: conrarye.

13391 Thou. So L, K. S: þat.

13392 sakles. So L, K. S: slakles.

13396 ye. S: letter canceled before (3?).

13398 two. So L, K. S: þo.
wyghtly. S: t inserted above the line.


13408 of. So L, K. S: on.

13415 To. So L, K. S: So.

13416 bot. So L, K. S: bo.

13422 wyt. S: inserted above the line.

13427 sayd. S: inserted above the line.

13431 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 124r): no heading.
sen. So L, K. S: son.
God. S: inserted above canceled þof.


13433 both. So L, K. S: before.

13435 kynred. S: letter (c?) canceled before.

13445 forthy. So L, K. S: in hy.

13450 sone. So L, K. S: saue.

13451 them. So L, K. S: he þem.

13458 down. S: downn.

13478 hym. So L, K. S omits.

13479 thei hym. So S, O. L, K: thei to hym.

13480 thor. S: þer þor.

13481 ther owt. So L, K. S: þe rowt.

13491 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 124v): no heading.

13498 tone. S: altered from tene.

13502 unto. So L, K. S: to.

13514 held. So K. S: hald. L: had.

13518 hyr. So L, K. S: his.

13532 Joiada. So L, K. S: Iorada.

13540 Joiada. So L, K. S: Iorada.

13547 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 125r): no heading.

13561 in. So L, K. S omits.

13564 hyr. So L, K. S: þer.

13585 than. S: inserted above the line.
Joiada. So L, K. S: Iorada.


13587 mony. S: ny inserted above the line.
ma. S: and ma.


13591 thei ta. S: þei ta þei ta.

13596 Joiada. So L, K. S: Iorada.
last in. So K. S: lysted. L: lasted.


13600 wyll. S: wll wyll.

13609 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 125v): no heading.

13613 Joacas. So O. S, L, K: Ioatas.

13623 Joiada. So L, K. S: Iorada.

13634 and. So L, K. S omits.

13636 Joiada. So L, K. S: Iorada.

13648 Joiada. So L, K. S: Iorada.
he has. So L, K. S: yt was.


13649–50 So L, K. S omits lines.

13653 Azaell. S: a inserted above the line.

13657 townes. So L, K. S omits.

13669 Phylysteyns. S: ff Phylysteyns.

13671 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 126r): liber iiijus Regum.
hom. So L, K. S: whom.


13681 this. So L, K. S omits.

13687 so. So L, K. S omits.

13693 comforth. S: þan inserted before, then canceled.

13694 The soth we sone sall knaw. So K. S: þat sath sall sone be knaw n. L: the soth sone shal we knaw.

13695 lang lyf. So L. S: lyf lang lyf. K: lyf lang.

13699 desiring. So L, K. S: lykyng.

13700 both. So L, K. S: beth.

13701 Thre. So L, K. S: þe.

13702 S: line 13700 mistakenly copied and then canceled; line 13702 inserted above.
he layd. So L, K. S: can he lay.


13705 sayd. So L, K. S: say.

13711 When he. So L, K. S: whe.

13717 his. S: þer his.

13719 murdred. So L, K. S: menturd.

13722 of. So L, K. S omits.
werkyng. S: his werkyng.


13723 hid. So L, K. S omits.

13725 neghted. So L, K. S: neght.

13729 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 126v): liber iiijus Regum.

13735 schew. So S. L, K: shew.

13756 them. So L, K. S: þei.

13769 full redy. So L, K. S: full wele redy.

13782 Moabyse. S: Mob Moabyse.

13785 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 127r): no heading.

13814 long. So L, K. S: to long.

13822 wrscheply. So L, K. S: wrschepfully.

13824 Marginalia in S (at right of fol. 127r): Jeroboam.

13843 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 127v): liber iiijus Regum.

13852 hym. So L, K. S: þem.

13854 therfore. So L, K. S: þore.

13860 Hym. So L, K. S: he.

13887 Marginalia in S (at left of fol. 127v, partially cut off): [J]onas [sca]pham.

13901 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 128r): liber iiijus Regum. Jonas.

13902 unwysly. S: altered from wnwysly.

13910 to. S: do to.

13911 Then. So L, K. S: þei.
way. So L, K. S: ways.


13912 delese. So L, K. S: dolese.

13914 and. S: yt and. K reads þe and.

13915 that any man may. So L. S: þat anyman þat may. K: any man þat may.

13916 in. So L, K. S: of.

13924 graunt. So L, K. S: graunt yow.

13941 thei. So L, K. S: þou þei.

13943 over. S: of ouer.

13947 suld in sekkes. So L, K. S: in sekkes suld.

13949 barns. So L, K. S: barons.

13950 ware. So L, K. S: þat.

13956 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 128v): liber iiijus Regum.

13974 he. S: inserted above canceled yt.

13976 pennance. So S. L, K: penance.

13982 sone may. So L, K. S: may sone.

13983 an. S: an hyll euer.

13992 yvyn. So L, K. S: euyn.

14002 we. So L, K. S omits.

thynges. So L, K. S: kynges.


14004 to end. So L, K. S: to þe end.

14005 Jeroboam we told of. So K. S: Ioroboam. L: Ieroboam that we told of (omits Kyng).

14011 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 129r): liber iiijus Regum.

14012 carpe. So L, K. S: cappe.

14025 Goddes. So S, L. K: Godes.

14033 surquidry. So L, K. S: syche degre.

14051 ware. So L, K. S: warer.

14063 meselry. S: melle meselry.

14065 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 129v): no heading.

14067 felows. So L, K. S: felews.

14070 cyté. S: inserted above canceled reme.

14079 ylke. S: yll ylke.

14084 drese. So L, K. S: drefe.

14087 trowth. So L, K. S: trowt.
 
Print Copyright Info Purchase

Fourth Book Of Kings (2 Kings)


 
LIBER QUARTUS REGUM.
 

 
[AHAZIAH TURNS TO IDOLATRY, IS REBUKED BY ELIJAH (1:1–18)]
 

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993.
In this Faurt Boke of Kynges to ken
   wher lykyng and wher luf lyse,
Us nedes to nevyn the names of men,
   of kynges, of dukes, of prinsese of price,
And of ther werkyng wher and qwen
   by dyverse dedes forto devyse.
Insampels sere sall we se then
   how grett relefe therof may ryse;
For as lerned men may loke,
   Sant Paule telles old and yyng:
“All that is wryttyn in boke
   is lefed for our lernyng.”

994.
Kyng Occozi was Acab sun
   and had his welthis all in his weld.
And yf the fader a foyle war fun,
   the sun was more fole, and that he feld.
To make hym godes he has begun,
   os paynyms used in yowth and eld.
To gud God wold he not be bun,
   bot Belsabub he made his beld,
Was god of Acaron,
   a nacion not to nevyn.
Hys hope was all hym on.
   He toke no hed to Hevyn.

995.
So lang in lust his lyfe he lede
   hym lyst to lere no lefull layre.
The dome of God nothyng he dred,
   bot ever he dyd myse more and more.
Fro a hegh sted — thor was he sted —
   he fell and hurt hymself full sore
So that he lay seke in his bed,
   and fast thus ordand he therfore:
His messyngers he send
   to Belsabub at wytt
Whedder his seknes suld mend,
   or he suld dy on yt.

996.
And als thei went, befor fand thei
   the prophett Ely in a playn.
He asked wheder thei ware on way,
   and thei sayd hym the soth certayn
All how ther lord in langur lay.
   He bad them boldly turn agayn:
“And to your lord salfly ye say:
   of this seknes he sall be slayn,
Bycause he hopes his hele
   of Belsabub forto have
And leves Hym that is lele
   and all seknes may save.”

997.
The messyngers agayn con wend
   this bodword boldly forto bere.
Thei told hym all that tale tyll end
   as thei with Ely warned were.
Then was Kyng Occozi yll tend;
   full grett othes then con he swere
Old Ely with shame forto shend
   so that his demyng suld noyght dere.
He cald his steward strang
   this forward to fulfyll
And bad hym wyghtly gang
   and bryng Ely hym tyll.

998.
“He sall be pyned in my palas
   and lernyd swylke lesynges forto tell.”
The steward hastely sembled has
   fyfty folke, both ferse and fell.
To Ely playnly con he pase
   and moved this mater them omell
How that the kyng yll angred was,
   and that he myght not byd ne dwell
Bot wyghtly wend hym to
   and fand to ese his hert.
“And yf thou wyll not so do,
   with greve thou sall be gert.”

999.
The prophett answerd sone and sayd,
   “Thi manase may not marre to me,
For all thi fayre I am not flayd;
   therfor a fote I wyll not flee.
And that God is with me wele payd,
   ensampyll here sone sall thou see.
Thou sall be brent for all thi brayd
   and all this cowrt that come with thee.”
By this word was end,
   God wold do hys desyre.
A fyre from Hevyn dyscend
   and brent them bone and lyre.

1000.
Unto the kyng com non of tho
   to tell hym how this werke was wroyght.
Bot when he wyst, he was full wo
   and sayd yt suld be full dere boyght.
He ordand men ose mony moo
   and bad the prophet suld be broyght.
Bot thei ware ryght sone served so
   as the fyrst fyfty that hym soyght.
Thei ware brent ylkon
   with fyre that on them fest.
Then was the kyng wyll of woyne;
   he wyst not what was best.

1001.
Thore in that cyté wonned a man
   that Moyses Law wold never lett.
The kyng to hym commawnd then
   the prophett with fayrnes to fett.
He went and warly to hym wan
   within his sell whore he was sett.
As curtasly ose ever he can
   and with grett gladnes he hym grett
And sayd, “Ser, have mercy
   on me and my meneye!”
Then to hym sayd Ely,
   “What is thi wyll with me?”

1002.
“A, ser,” he says, “full wele I knaw
   God goverence thee in word and dede.
We ar charged with full grett aw
   unto the kyng thee forto lede.
And thou wyll se tyll our saw,
   so may thou make us mekyll mede;
And yf thou wyll not ydder draw,
   we mun be ded withoutyn drede.
We sall noyght do ne say
   in this gate thee to greve.
Bot, gud ser, and thou may,
   have mynd of our myscheve!”

1003.
The prophett saw thei sorewd so
   and herd them carpe so curtasly.
He graunt hym with them to go.
   so wentt thei same to Samary.
Then went Ely with other mo
   to carpe with the kyng Occozi.
He fraynd yf he suld flyt ther fro
   or els of that same sekenes to dy.
He sayd, “Sen thou takes rede
   of Belsabub, the fend,
Als sone thou sall be ded
   and with that warlow wend.”

1004.
So sodanly he mad endyng
   aftur his werkys wele worthy wore.
He had non ayre, old ne yyng,
   his state ne his sted to restore.
His brother Joram was crowned kyng
   and lord of Israel, lese and more.
He was wele wars in all thyng
   then any had bene hym before.
He melled with mawmentry
   and lyfed in lust of flesch.
Acab ne Occozi
   was never to fylth so fresch.
 

make known; (t-note)

invoke



various

(see note)

books
left


Ahaziah; Ahab’s
control
fool was found [to be]
foolish; suffered
himself gods; (t-note)
pagans used [to do] all the time; (t-note)
bound; (t-note)
Baal-zebub; comfort; (t-note)
Ekron
mention





desired to learn no lawful lore
judgment; feared
sin
place; placed
(t-note)





die of it



Elijah


illness



health

true; (t-note)




pronouncement
(t-note)


oaths
kill
(t-note)

(t-note)




tortured

(t-note)
fierce and cruel

among them
(t-note)

(t-note)


grief; afflicted








burned; evil




flesh







(t-note)




perplexed



dwelled; (see note)
disobey

fetch
(t-note)
cell; (see note)

greets

company




(t-note)

fear

(t-note)


(t-note)
(t-note)
(t-note)












(i.e., Elijah); counsel


devil




heir

Jehoram; (t-note)

much worse

meddled in idolatry



 
[ELIJAH TAKEN INTO HEAVEN (2:1–25)]
 


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1005.
In this mene tyme that I of tell
   was gud Ely, Goddes prophett trew,
Rayvesched up in flesch and fell
   in a chare byrnand, bryght of hew,
And in Paradyse dyght to dwell
   with Eunoke that our elders knew.
With Antecryst sall the mete and mell.
   and aftur hym leved Elysew,
A prophett proved of price,
   to nevyn in ylk nede,
In word and werke full wyse,
   als we sall aftur rede.
 



flesh and skin (whole body)
burning chariot
placed; (see note)
Enoch
they meet and fight
Elisha

mention


 
[JEHORAM AND JEHOSHAPHAT’S WAR AGAINST MOAB (3:1–27)]
 





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1006.
Kyng Joram was a gentyll knyght,
   all yf he lyfed unlafully,
Aftur his fader, that Acab heygh,
   and aftur his brother, Kyng Occozi.
He geydderd folke, for he wold fyght
   agayns the kyng of Moaby
Of hym forto recover his ryght,
   and this was his encheson why:
The Moabyse ware bun
   to gyf Kyng Acab clere,
For thei in pese suld wun,
   two hunderth shepe be yere.

1007.
And now thei say, what so yt ment,
   that thei wyll pay swylk payn no more.
The kyng thynkes loth to lose his rent,
   wher his fader was fest before.
Unto Jerusalem has he sent
   to Josaphat, that was kyng thore,
And prayd hym forto take entent
   and help his ryght forto restore.
Josaphat says, “I sall
   helpe all that ever I may.”
And same so went thei all
   in full ryall aray.

1008.
Bot qwen the gayre was gudly grayd
   and thei all redy forto ryde,
Kyng Joram then the prophett prayd
   forto tell them what suld betyde.
Elysew answerd hym and sayd,
   “I am not sent to save thi syde.
With Josaphat is God wele paid;
   His helpe fro hym He wolle not hyde.
I say yow sothfastly
   that for his luf alone
Ye sall have the vyctory
   of your enmys ylkone.”

1009.
Then went thei furth with mekyll glee.
   syght of ther enmys sone thei have.
Als the prophett sayd that yt suld be,
   sone ware thei skomfett, knyght and knave.
Thei conquerd sone all that cuntré
   and mad ther rebels to ryn and rave.
The kyng for ferd was fayn to fle
   tyll a cyté hymselfe to save.
And ther he wund with wo,
   for Ebrews all abowt
Besegede that cyté so
   that he suld never wyn owtt.

1010.
And when he saw he suld be shent,
   a sotelté full sone he dyght.
Unto the walles wyghly he went
   wher Ebrews of hym myght have syght.
His eldest sun in hand he hent
   and heved his sword hegh apon hyght.
He bretynd hym forto be brynt
   als sacrafyce to God Almyght.
Ebrews con on hym loke;
   in hert thei had pyté.
That sege sone thei forsoke
   and went to ther cuntré.
 


even if; unlawfully



Moab

reason
Moabites were required

peace should live
sheep each year; (see note)



tribute

(t-note)

Jehoshaphat








gear; prepared
(t-note)

occur
Elisha

satisfied; (t-note)







(t-note)


they were discomfited; (t-note)






Besieged
win [a way] out


destroyed
trick




cut him into pieces to be burned





 
[JEHOSHAPHAT DIES; ANOTHER JEHORAM REIGNS (8:16)]
 





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1011.
Kyng Josaphat agayn ys gone
   to Jerusalem the redy way.
Sone aftur seknes has hym tone
   so that he dyed that aghtdane day.
For hym was mad full mekyll mone,
   for lely lufed he Godes Lay.
Joram, hys sun, full sone on one
   resaved his reme by ryght aray.
Now be we ware for wathe
   to tell thire kynges twa,
For Joram heygh thei bathe,
   of Israel and of Juda.

1012.
Bot this Joram that I now of tell
   had wedded a wyf heyght Godolé,
Doyghhtur of Kyng Acab and Jezabell
   and systur unto Kyng Occozé.
And Joram, the kyng of Israel,
   brother unto hyr was he;
Therfor was frendschep them omell
   with beld os brether aght to be.
Now leve we ther two kynges
   that governd all Ebrew,
And tell furth ferly thynges
   of the prophett Elysew.
 



taken
on the eighth day

loyally; Law
Jehoram; (t-note)

aware to be cautious; (see note)
these kings apart
named; (t-note)




Athaliah; (see note)




among them
comfort


wondrous
(t-note)

 
[ELISHA’S MIRACLE TO HELP THE WIDOW OF OBADIAH (4:1–7)]
 

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1013.
He sojornd then in Samary,
   and mony of seknes con he save
And be poyntes of prophecy
   what any man wold aftur crave.
A woman come with carfull crye
   that hoped of hym helpe to have.
Scho sayd, “Ser, have of me mercy!
   Bot thou me red, els may I rave.”
“Dame,” he sayd, “be styll
   and putt wepyng away!
Say me what is thi wyll,
   I sall helpe and I may.”

1014.
“A, ser,” scho says, “full wele thou knew
   my husband that heyght Obedias,
That in his tyme to God was trew,
   now is he ded, my lord, allas!
When Jezabell Goddes prophetes slew
   that in this land then wonnand was,
One hunderth held he hale of hew
   whyls all perels con overpase.
He sold up all his gud
   and broyght hym in grett dett
For to fynd them ther fode
   and fro greve them to gete.

1015.
“In a seler he dyd them sytt
   whore that non sargandes suld them see.
Now is he ded and the dett unqwyte,
   and ylka man askes his dett of me.
And wele wars tythandes tell thei yett:
   my sun that is full fayr and free,
Thei say thei sall have hym forfett.
   Then are we lorn, both I and he.
And, ser, sen all this dede
   was done for our Goddes sake,
Unto my harme take hede
   and help my sytt to slake!”

1016.
“Dame,” he sayd, “I sall thee tell
   thrugh myght of God to mend thi mode.
What has thou in thi howse at sell?”
   “Sertes, ser,” scho sayd, “non erthly gud
Bot a lytell oyle in a vessell
   to fynd me and my chyld oure fud,
Als lang os we sall same dwell.”
   He says, “I wold thou understod.
Go home and fand to gete
   into thin howse this day
Of vessell small and grett
   ose mony as ever thou may.

1017.
“Borow of thi neghtbours nere and ferre
   all that ar tume, both tub and tune.
Wend into thi hows, thi dore thou spare
   and be within, thou and thi sun.
When that thi vessell ordand are,
   lett sum oyle into ylkon run,
And sone thou sall thi mornyng marre,
   for Goddes fuson sall thore be fun.”
Scho wroyght, and als God wyld
   hyr kare full kyndly cover,
All tho vessels ware fyld
   so full that oyle went over.

1018.
Then was the woman ferly fayn,
   And to the prophett fast scho rane.
Scho sayd hym all the soth certayn,
   and to hyr he commawnd thane,
“Wend home unto thi howse agayn,
   sell oyle and pay ever ylk man.
And lyf thou and thi lytyll swayn
   furth of the remnand as ye cane.”
Thus was hyr oyle encrest
   that all hyr dett was payd,
And so hyr sorow sest
   als Elysew had sayd.
 

(t-note)
illnesses



(t-note)

Unless; advise, I may go mad



if


(t-note)
Obadiah; (see note)

(t-note)

dwelling
[of them] he kept healthy of skin (i.e., alive)
(t-note)

put himself; debt

keep; (t-note)


cellar; (t-note)
officials
unpaid

news
(see note)

lost



grief; (t-note)




to sell



(t-note)








empty; barrel
lock



mourning cease; (t-note)
abundance; discovered

(t-note)




wondrously glad



(t-note)


remnant




 
[ELISHA’S MIRACLES OF A CHILD IN SHUNEM (4:8–37)]
 




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1019.
A man wunned with his wyf to weld
   besyd that cyté of Samary
Whor Elysew oft toke his beld;
   and his wyf drowped oft drerely
Bycawse scho was gone in gret eld
   and had no barn hyr husband by.
When Elysew to hyr beheld,
   he sent his servant Gyezi
And bad bryng hyr hym tyll
   hyr sorowyng forto say,
For he wold with gud wyll
   amend yt yf he may.

1020.
Scho come to hym os he hyr bad,
   and told hym all hyr purpase playn:
“Chyld with my husband never I had,
   therfor my hert hath mekyll payn.”
“Dame,” he sayd, “be blyth and glad,
   and here I hete thee for certayn
That with a sun thou sal be sted
   or tyme I com eft here agayn.”
Scho sayd, “For grett Goddes sake,
   gud ser, dyseve me noght!”
He says, “I undertake
   God wyll that this be wroyght.”

1021.
Gud hope in hyr hert scho hang
   that all his saws suld suth be fun,
And with hyr husband or oght lang
   consayved scho and bare a sun.
Then mad thei grett myrth them amang
   and kepyt yt warly whor thei wun
To tyme that it couth speke and gang,
   and then new grevance is begun.
The chyld toke evyll and dyed
   thre yeres fro yt was born.
The mother wept and cryd,
   “Alas, now am I lorn!”

1022.
Scho went furth als a wod woman
   for the prophett by fyrth and fell,
And at the last to hym scho wan
   whore he wund on the Mount Carmele.
“A, ser,” scho sayd, “no red I con;
   my myschef now may no man tell.
Alas, the whyle that I began
   to aske a chyld with me to dwell!
I wened when I yt bare
   to make me myrth ever more.
Now is my mornyng mare
   then ever yt was before.

1023.
“Ser, for a chyld I con thee pray,
   noyght forto gab me ne begyle.
Then wold I thou had sayd me nay
   lever then to lyf so schort a whyle.
And yf thou be prophett verray,
   as schews thi mervelys mony a myle,
Geyte me my sun; els wyll I say
   that yt was wroyght with wekyd wyle.”
The prophett had pyté,
   swylk mone that woman ment.
To his servant sayd he,
   “Gyezi, thou take entent!

1024.
“Have here my stafe and wend thi way
   with this woman fast on thi fete.
Apon hyr sun doun thou yt lay
   and fand yf thou fele any hete.
Yf he ryse noyght by this aray,
   com thou agayn me forto mete;
And then sall I myself assay
   on Goddes behalf hyr bale to bete.”
He wentt with pase full playn,
   and aftur his word he wroyght;
Bot sone he come agayn
   and sayd he rose noyght.

1025.
Then Elyse this pase thus purvayd.
   he voyde all pepyll owt of that place.
The chyld unto his body he layd,
   hand to hand and face to face,
And unto God hertly he prayd.
   The chyld has lyf in lytyll space.
“Have here thi sun, dame, now,” he sayd,
   “and love God gudly of grace!”
Then was hyre hert full lyght,
   to love Hym was hyr lyst.
So con God schew His myght
   to them that in Hym tryst.
 

dwelled; live
(i.e., Shunem)
took his rest
fell often into depression
great age
children

Gehazi
(t-note)







(t-note)


promise

before the time; (t-note)

(t-note)





words should be found truthful

(t-note)

safely; (t-note)
go

ill


lost


as a mad woman
(i.e., everywhere)

lived

(t-note)









mock me

rather than
a true prophet

(t-note)



(t-note)




(t-note)





misery to relieve






course; prepared








desire; (t-note)


 
[ELISHA’S MIRACLES OF THE LOAVES AND THE HEALING OF NAAMAN (4:38–5:19)]
 





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1026.
Aftur this tym began to be
   grett hungur over all that land
And pestilence in sere cuntré
   for fawt of fode that no man fand.
And Elysew that tym was he
   in wyldernese allway wonnand.
To hym soyght pepyll grett plenté;
   fro Hevyn helpe was in his hand.
With erbys and other gud
   God ordand for that spence,
So that non fayle fode
   in that prophett presence.

1027.
A man that wonned that forest by
   purvayd the prophett to rehete.
To his fode ordand he forthi
   a lytell seke full of fayr qwete,
And ten lovys bare he hym in hy
   of the same flour for his awn mete
And twenty other of barly.
   We may wele wytt thei ware not grette.
“Vowchesave, gud ser,” he sayd,
   “to take this gyft of me.”
The prophett was wele payd,
   and thus then ordand he.

1028.
His servant to hym con he call
   and bad hym gare the folke go sytt
And part this bred amang them all
   so that ylkon have sum of yt.
The servant sayd, “Ser, so I sall,
   bot in that werk wyll be not wytt.
To swylk a pepyll yt is full small
   yf ylkon suld have bot a bytt.
Me thynke, ser, yt ware nede
   to take sum other red,
For here is folke to fede
   a hunderth that fayles bred.”

1029.
The prophett sayd, “Go herdely,
   for yf thei hungur never so yll,
God is of myght to multyplye
   to ylk man his mete at wyll.”
Als he commawnd, dyd Gyezi;
   he served them full fayr and styll.
When all war fed, ther leved by
   als mony folk mo forto fyll.
Thus sendes God socur sone
   to them that His Laws wyll lere.
Bot mekyll more was done,
   als men may aftur here.

1030.
In Syry landes of Sarsynes
   wund a kyng, Benadab his name,
And a prince proved of grett prowes,
   Naman nevynd, of nobyll fame.
He was renownd of grett ryches
   and non so hend haldyn at hame.
Bot defawt felyd he in his flesch,
   with lepur was he lath and lame.
That was grett harm to here,
   for his lord lufed hym wele
And folk both ferre and nere
   grett helpe on hym con fele.

1031.
His wyfe was fayre of flesch and fell
   and of gud maners mekyll more,
And with hyr wund a damsell
   that fro Ebrews was stolyn before.
Scho sayd, “Thor wuns in Israel
   a prophett that may sayfe all sore.”
This tale oft tyms con scho tell
   and sayd, “Wold God my lord ware thore!
For certes he suld be hale
   or he past that provynce.”
The lady told this tale
   untyll hyr lord the prince,

1032.
On qwat maner the maydyn yyng
   sayd how that his bote suld be.
When he herd tell of this tythyng,
   full mekyll myrth in hert had he.
He went and told unto the kyng
   and sayd, “Lord, yf thi lykyng be
To gyf me leve a lytyll thyng
   that myght be medcyn unto me!”
The kyng sayd, “Tell us tyll
   what consell that thou hath kend.
I sall help with gud wyll
   thi myrth forto amend.”

1033.
He says, “Ser, with my wyf at hame
   dwellys a lytyll damsell,
And scho hath told unto hyr dame
   a prophett is in Israel
That be nevynyng of his goddes name
   hath myght of maystres forto mell
And forto lech ylk lame,
   whedder yt be maynd or mesell.”
Kyng Benedab says, “I am kend
   with Joram, kyng of Jews.
Unto hym sall I send
   to traw thi tales in trews.”

1034.
He mad a lettur to be lele
   in thies wordes wrschypfully:
“I, kyng of Syry, under my seall
   sendes worschep, os wele is worthy,
To Joram, the kyng of Israel,
   as frend that I fast in affy
At helpe my servand to have hele,
   Naman, chefe of my chyvalry.
Of his lepur leche hym so
   faythfully withoutyn fayle
As thou wyll ever I do
   thyng that may thee avayle.”

1035.
Naman ordand full rych aray:
   somers with cloghes, sylke and satayn,
Ten payr of garmentes gud and gay
   with pyrry and with pure ermyn,
Talentes of sylver of assay,
   sex milia besantes of gold fyne,
The prophett forto plese and pay.
   He hoped to have his medcyn.
With full clene cumpany
   that he had ever at hand
He soyght to Samary,
   ferre owt in Ebrews land.

1036.
So with this letters is he went
   full wrschypfully, this may we wene.
Kyng Joram told he his entent
   and toke hym letturs them betwene,
And sone in hand he has them hent.
   And when he all the suth had sene,
His ryche robes he rofe and rent
   and sayd, “Alas! what may this mene?
Wenes the kyng of Syry
   that I have God at wyll
To do all my desyre
   men forto spare and spyll?

1037.
“Occasions sekes he now, I se,
   how he may make my lordschep lese,
And thus he says be a sotelté
   so for to dryfe me to dystres.”
When Elysew herd how that he
   had ryfyn his wedes so in wodnese,
He sayd, “Send Naman unto me,
   then sall thei se that suthnes.
In Israel er prophettes lele,
   mo then is ned to nevyn,
That his seknes sall hele
   thrugh the helpe of God of Hevyn.”

1038.
Kyng Joram that before was rad
   now wex he lyxsom of his late,
And the prince Naman was full glad
   that the prophett heyght to amend his state.
With all the harnays that he thore had
   to hym he toke the gayneste gatte.
Then Elysew to his servand bad
   go speke with hym withoutyn the gatte.
“And when thou sees hym com,
   say I tell hym this tale:
To wasche hym in the flom
   sevyn sythys, he sal be hale.”

1039.
Then com this nobyll prince Naman
   full playnly to the prophett place.
Bot Gyezi sone unto hym wan
   and sayd, “My maystur this message mase:
Go wesch thee in the Flom Jordan
   sevyn sythys in certayn space,
And so he says thou sal be than
   salved of seknes that thou hase.”
Then was the prynce not payd.
   He cald his men togeydder,
And to them thus he sayd,
   “Wherto ar we comyn hydder?

1040.
“Ar not at hame in our land
   als clene waturs that we com fra,
In Damaske and in Syrry rynnand,
   both Farfar flud and Abbana?
I wened the prophett with his hand
   suld have helyd me betwyx us twa.
His warke ys noyght, now I warrand,
   therfor agayn fast wole we ga.
Folke sayd, or we come here,
   that he cowth bete all bales.
Thus may men lyghtly lere
   forto trow wemens tales.”

1041.
He removed sone all his aray,
   for in hert was he angerd yll.
Sum of his men can to hym say,
   “Ser, yf that yt ware thi wyll,
Of this poynt we wole thee pray:
   the prophettes consell to fulfyll.
For thrugh his myght, mend yf it may,
   harme may non towch thee untyll.
Yf he had gyfyn grett thyng
   to do for thi releve,
Thou suld noyght make grochyng
   for dred his god to greve.

1042.
“And this thyng that he now of ment
   is lytyll and may be for the best.”
Unto ther sawes then he assent,
   and to the flom the cowrse thei kest.
He wesch hym ther with gud entent
   sevyn sythes or ever he rest,
And hertly hele sone has he hent,
   that no fowle fylth on his flesch was fest.
Bot evyn os a yyng chyld
   ys soft and semly sene,
So was his flesch unfyled
   of all that corupcion clene.

1043.
Thus when he was be sythes sevyn
   weschyn clene both flesch and fell,
So mekyll joy myght no man nevyn
   os ther was mad them omell.
He cryd and sayd with stabyll stevyn,
   “Now wyll I say wherso I dwell:
Ther is no god in Erth ne Hevyn
   bot only God of Israel,
Ne non that myght may schew
   to save men of sekenes
Bot only Elysew.
   A prophet proved he es.”

1044.
Than counsayld all that cumpany,
   because that thei so comforth ere,
At wend agayn to Samary
   the prophett presand forto bere.
The prince proferd hym in hy
   sylver and gold and other gere.
The prophett sayd, “Gramercy,
   bot swylke welthes aw us non to were.
Sen God heled thee thus,
   thanke Hym of His gud dede!
Yt falys noyght untyll us
   therfor forto take mede.

1045.
“And, ser, I say thee for certayn:
   the werkes that God here wyll have wroyght
By His myght and His power playn,
   aw nawder to be sold ne boyght.
Sen thou ys hale, wend hom agane,
   and thanke Hym hertly in thi toyght!”
The prince says, “Certes, so wyll I fayn;
   all other goddes to nevyn ar noyght.
His trewth I take me tyll
   als lang os I may lyfe;
And, ser, for that same skyll
   I pray thee me to gyfe

1046.
“Two horssus lade of erth of this land
   in privay place yt forto lay.
That I theron may stably stand
   my Cryatur when I sall pray.
For I wott He is all-weldand
   and that His lordschep sall last ay
That me hath heled both hede and hand.
   Ther ar no mo that men mend may.
Bot when the kyng of Syry
   sees this werke on this wyse,
I wott he wyll desyre
   forto make sacrafyce

1047.
“To Beall that is blake and blo,
   in whom he hopes to have releve.
And bot I gladly with hym go,
   agayns me wyll he malyce meve.
Then yf I wend with other mo
   forto eschew a more myschefe,
Pray thou thi God betwyx yow two
   so that He take yt not to greve.
Fore my hert sall be hale
   to hym that salves all sare.”
The prophett says, “I sall
   pray fast for thi wele fare.”
 

(t-note)

many countries
lack

always dwelling


herbs
expense

(t-note)



nourish
therefore
wheat
loaves; in haste
food
other [loaves]; (t-note)
large


glad




(t-note)



wisdom





who need bread


boldly; (t-note)



Gehazi; (t-note)









Syria; Saracens; (t-note)
lived; Ben-hadab; (t-note)
(t-note)
Naaman called

courteous
(see note)
leprosy
(t-note)







lived
(t-note)




[made] whole
before he left; (t-note)




young
remedy


(t-note)
(t-note)

(t-note)
(t-note)









invoking
exercise
heal; (t-note)
maimed or leprous


(t-note)
believe; (t-note)


legal
(t-note)
seal
honor

in trust
cure

heal






packhorses

precious stones; ermine; (t-note)
(t-note)
6,000

(t-note)


journeyed



(t-note)





ripped and tore

Believes






lessen my authority

(t-note)

clothes; madness


are true prophets; (t-note)
more; mention
(t-note)




cheerful in his mood

promised

straightest road
(t-note)


(t-note)
river
seven times





makes

(t-note)

healed of the sickness
pleased





(t-note)


the Pharpar and Abana rivers
thought
(t-note)
naught
(t-note)

triumph over all ills
learn; (see note)
believe women’s


company







difficult; (t-note)







their words; assented
took; (t-note)



remained; (t-note)


undefiled





mention
among
steady voice
wherever


power; (t-note)








gifts
at once

Thanks
ought; accept


(t-note)
reward









name






burdened





(t-note)









unless


greater


wholly



 
[GEHAZI’S GREED AND PUNISHMENT (5:20–27)]
 

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1048.
The prince so turnes hym home in hy;
   full mery ware his men ylkon.
Elysew convayd hym curtasly,
   bot ryches wold he resave none.
Therfor his servant Geezi
   toyght yt was ungraydly gone.
Full fast he ordand hym forthi
   at have sum to hisself alon.
Aftur them radly he ran;
   hym had bettur bene styll.
The prince persayved hym than
   and sayd, “What is thy wyll?”

1049.
“A, ser,” he sayd, “sen ye con wend,
   ar new men with my maystur lyght,
Two of his kyn of lang tym kend,
   and both thei byde with hym all nyght.
And for he wold ther myrth amend,
   he bad me ryn aftur yow ryght,
And prays yow that ye wold hym send
   two cloghes and two besandes bryght
His frendes with forto plese.
   This may hym gretly gayn.”
To do that hym myght ese
   the prince was farly fayn.

1050.
Two somers charge be lyve he bad
   with dyverse drewres forto dele.
“Bot I hym mensk, els am I mad,
   and thanke hym hertly of myn hele.”
Then Gyezi was wunder glad
   for wynyng of this werldly wele.
Unto his awn howse he yt had
   so fro his maystur yt forto fele.
For prively he yt keped
   and wend all had bene wele.
Bot bettur hym ware have slepyd,
   his maystur wyst ylk dele.

1051.
And sone his knave to hym he cald:
   “Gyezi, whore has thou bene?”
“Maystur,” he sayd, “here I me hald
   to wayte your wyll, wele may ye wene.”
“Bewsir,” he sayd, “Thou ert to bald
   and says not soth, that sal be sene.
I herd the tales all that thou told
   unto the prince yow two betwene.
I saw ferre in the feld
   when thou toke gold and fee.
Bot thou sall never yt weld
   with wyn, I warn yt thee.

1052.
"Thou wyst I wold no welthys wyn
   when he swylke bewtes to me con bede.
Thou herd me say how yt was syn
   for Godes werke to take mede.
The same seknes that he was in,
   for thou hath done swylk dede,
Sall come to thee and all thi kyn
   ever more persewand in thi sede.”
Full sone was Gyezi
   then aftur his maystur dome
Maynhed with mesellri
   and all that of hym come.

1053.
We have herd how that prince Naman
   was saved of all seknes sere,
And Gyezi was mad messell than
   and aftur hym all his kyn clere.
So se we how God wyll and con
   ordand well for His frendes dere,
Als He with Elysew began.
   Bot mekyll mor yett men may here.
And sen sere ferles fell,
   yt is gud to saye sum.
Of on wyll we tell,
   was sene besyd the flum.
 

in haste



(t-note)
improperly



(t-note)

(t-note)




kinsmen; acknowledged; (see note)
stay




(t-note)

what might ease him (Elisha); (t-note)
very glad


packhorses quickly; (t-note)
gifts; (t-note)
honor; (t-note)
(t-note)

wealth

hide


(t-note)
knew every part of it


(t-note)


know
Fair sir



far; field
payment

joy



extend





(t-note)

master’s doom (proclamation)
Crippled with leprosy; (t-note)
are descended










since such wonders occurred

one
river

 
[ELISHA’S MIRACLE OF THE AXHEAD (6:1–7)]
 




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1054.
Sant Elysew, Goddes prophet gud,
   and other that wold with hym byde,
Toyght fayre forto be nere the flud
   to soyjorn in that somer tyd.
He ordand wryghes and ydder yode
   and chese ther place by the flome syde
And hewed down trese swylk os thor stod
   to make a howse them forto hyde,
Whore thei myght wynly wun
   fro wynd and wedders wete
And also fro the sun,
   that thor gafe full grete hete.

1055.
A tree ther on the banke con stand
   that to a balke was bowand best.
A wryght when he that faceon fand,
   to hew yt down wold he have no rest.
His ax, that he ther had ordand,
   fayled and was noyght fully fest.
Therfor the hed owt of his hand
   fell whore the watur was depest.
Then was he wyll of wytt,
   so all his felows wore.
Bot he had borowd yt,
   his mornyng was the more.

1056.
Unto the prophett fast he hym ment,
   at fall to fete he wold not fyne.
“Maystur, mercy, I mun be shent
   bot yf I have Goddes helpe and thin.
Myn ax hed in the watur is went,
   therfor my tym now mun I tyne,
And like more harme forto hent
   becaws I wot yt was not myne.
I borowd yt at my frend,
   and bot he may it have,
He wyll hold me unhend.
   Gud ser, helpe me to save!”

1057.
The prophett sayd, “Con thou me tell
   about the place betwyx us two?”
“Yay, ser, forsoth,” he says, “yt fell
   in the myddes of the flud o ferre me fro.”
Thei went and wold no lengur dwell,
   the prophett prayd ever os thei go.
The watur boyld up os a well;
   the hevy yrn com up also
Evyn unto the prophett hand.
   Then was the wryght full glade.
The word went all that land
   how he his axhed hade.
 


others who; dwell

(t-note)
carpenters; there went

trees such as there

live
damp weather




(t-note)
for a beam was very suitable; (t-note)
shape found


held fast
axhead


(t-note)
Because
mourning







may I lose
suffer
(t-note)


unworthy




(t-note)




(t-note)
heavy iron; (t-note)




 
[ELISHA THWARTS AN ARAMEAN ATTACK (6:8–23)]
 

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12875

 
1058.
Sone aftur this the kyng of Syry,
   Ser Benedab, that we of tell,
Was moved in anger and in yre
   agayns the kyng of Israel.
He cald Phylysteyns fell ose fyre
   and moved his malyce them omell.
To stroy Joram was his desyre,
   bot with quayntyse he wold hym quell.
He wyst a privay strayt
   wher Joram oft con gang.
Ther bad he them go wayte
   and murther hym them amang.

1059.
Forto fulfyll this fals entent
   his kenest knyghtes he cald by name.
Unto that way wyghtly thei wentt,
   als he had sayd to do that same.
Sant Elysew wyst how thei ment.
   Kyng Joram forto sheld fro shame
His message sone to hym he sent
   and bad he suld hold hym at hame
And pase noyght owt of toun
   fro dred of more myschefe,
For his enmys ware bown
   with hatred hym to grefe.

1060.
When Kyng Joram wyst of this wrang,
   that he was warned, he was full fayn.
The knyghtes when thei had lygen lang
   in wayte, then went thei hame agayn.
Kyng Benedab of sorow sang
   when he wyst his warke was in vayn,
And sayd his men themself amang
   his privay consell couth noyght layn.
He sware who yt ascryd
   that his wyll was unwroyght,
Fro yt myght be aspyd
   with bale yt suld be boyght.

1061.
The knyghtes themself sakles knew
   and herd hym make slyke manasyng,
Sayd, “Ser, we sal be fown trew
   and no consell to bere ne bryng.
Thor is a prophett Elysew
   that at his wyll may wytt all thyng.
And thei both are of Ebrew,
   we wott well he hath warned the kyng.
He dwels in Dotaym,
   a cyté here nere besyde.
Bot yf yt ware by hym,
   thi spech myght never be spyde.”

1062.
Then bad the kyng go grett plenté
   and that this fatur fast ware feld.
“Sett a sege to that same cyté
   whore in thei sayd the prophett dweld,
And bryng that mawment unto me
   that of swylke maystres has hym meld.
He sall be hanged heygh on a tre
   bycause he has our consell teld.”
To Dataym then thei soyght,
   and seged yt sone thei have.
Bot all ther werke was noyght,
   God wold His sonderman save.

1063.
Fell on a morn the prophett man
   luked furth, and in the feld he fand
Wele mo men then we nowmer can,
   harnest full wele both heuyd and hand.
Unto his maystur fast he ran,
   “Alas, alas!” full lowd cryand,
“That we ware born, now may we ban
   bot we be lyve may lefe this land.
For sertes sone we be ded,
   our enmyse are so nere.”
The prophett says, “I red
   that thou mend thi chere.

1064.
“Hopes thou not that I may have
   os mony men and more of myght
Fro all Sarsyns me forto save
   and forto maynten me in my ryght?”
Then forto loke he led his knave:
   on that other syd a selcowth syght.
He saw no sted to styre his stave
   for baners and for basnettes bryght.
Then sayd the prophett, “Loo!
   Thies men are at my wyll
Whatso I byd them do
   with forse yt to fulfyll.”

1065.
His servant sayd, “The kyng of Syre
   myght never rayse so rych aray.”
The prophett says, “Wele mo then thire
   may I have redy ylka day
To do whatever I wyll desyre.”
   Then unto God thus con he pray
Thyr hethyn folk, fulfylled of yre,
   sone of ther syght be tane away.
Hastely he had his bowne:
   God so his sand has sent.
Thei fayled syght as sone
   and wyst not whore thei went.

1066.
The prophett then began to go
   to them that waytt hym with wrang.
He and his man withoutyn mo
   went all ther enmys evyn amang.
He sayd to them, “Who seke ye so?”
   Thei sayd, “To take a traytur strang,
On Elysew, hym sall we slo.”
   He says, “So may ye lygg full lang!
He went fro this cyté
   sythyn a sevyn nyght past.
And ye wyll wend with me,
   we sall fynd hym at last.

1067.
“Yow forto led I sall not layn
   tyll ye se hym all opynly.”
Thei say, “We sall ye sew certayn,
   for that carll we wold fayn com by.”
He led them furth with pase full playn
   into the cyté of Samary.
Of that fayr was Kyng Joram fayn,
   for thei had wayte hym with envy.
The gates full sone ware sperd,
   thei wend all had bene feld.
Of Ebrews noyce thei hard,
   then was ther comforth keld.

1068.
The prophett then Sant Elysew
   prayd God to graunt agayn ther syght.
Sone ylkon of them other knew;
   then ware thei mased all owt of myght.
Ylkon trowd other was untrew
   to lede them so withoutyn lyght.
Abowt was mony bold Ebrew
   to welcom them, os yt was ryght,
With mony upbraydynges brayd
   and skornyng wordes gud wone.
In bale thore thei abade,
   and comforth kene thei none.

1069.
Thei saw how thei ware broyght in bale
   and clossed evyn in ther enmys hend.
The kyng asked the prophett counsayle
   how thei myght best of them make end.
Sant Elysew con say, “Sauns fayle,
   that thei be dede, I dyffend.
Thou hath noyght wun them in batell,
   ne aftur them no sand thou send.
Sen God thus hath them sent
   by His myght us amang,
Yf thei suld here be shent,
   me thynke then werke we wrang.

1070.
“And, ser, also thei trespast noyght
   sen tyme thei com to this cuntré.
Aftur myself thei say thei soyght,
   that mater lyges alon to me.
I red thei be to beldyng broyght
   for this nyght in this same cyté,
And to morn mete unto them boyght,
   and aftur fode lete them go free.
So sall we wrschep wyn
   of all thir men ever more,
And other all of ther kyn
   to do us favour therfor.”

1071.
The kyng sayd, “Ser, I vouchsave
   that thei be led os thou wyll lere.”
The prophett gart them herber have
   and bad no noye suld neght them nere,
And on the morn both knyght and knave
   had mete and drynke and meré chere,
And nothyng for ther cost to crave,
   bot bad them wend furth all in fere.
To ther cuntré thei come
   withoutyn lake of lym.
The prophett went hym home
   agayn to Dotaym.

1072.
Thei went full fast unto thei fynd
   Kyng Benedab with dukes hym by.
Thei told hym how thei ware mad blynd
   with Elysew, the prophett myghty,
And how he them as presoners pynd
   within that cyté of Samary.
And sythyn he held them noyght behynd,
   bot convayd them all curtasly
And so with beld them broyght
   owt of ther enmyse hand.
The kyng grett wounder toyght
   that thei slyke frenschep fand.

1073.
He sayd, “The prophett is myghty
   that so wele owt of wo may wyn.
Bot Kyng Joram, our yll enmy,
   he sall aby or ever we blyn.
Yf we persew hym prevely,
   the prophett sall sett debate therin.
With opyn batell wende wyll I
   and dyng hym doun for all his dyn.”
His barons sayd also,
   “We sall ye never forsake.
Full gladly wyll we go
   this vyag forto take.”
 

Syria



fierce as fire
among
(t-note)
cunning; (t-note)
knew; path
did go; (t-note)
ordered; (t-note)
murder



bravest; (t-note)


what they meant to do
(t-note)



(t-note)





very glad; (t-note)
lain long





revealed





knew they were innocent
threats
found


(t-note)


Dothan; (t-note)

Unless it was through him
spied


(t-note)
traitor quickly was killed; (t-note)


idolater



(t-note)


messenger; (t-note)


[It] befell; prophet’s servant
(t-note)
can count
armed; (t-note)

(t-note)

quickly
(t-note)

advise



Believe

Saracens
(t-note)
(see note)
side [they saw] a strange
(t-note)
helmets






(t-note)

Many more than these




taken; (t-note)
boon






awaited; (see note)
delay



slay; (t-note)
remain

a week ago
If



deny

follow

a very quick pace
Samaria


bolted; (t-note)
knew; hidden
sounds they heard
dashed



(t-note)
(t-note)
astonished




outspoken
aplenty





trapped
(t-note)

Without doubt; (see note); (t-note)
forbid




destroyed







advise; protection

tomorrow food
(t-note)
honor






instruct
safe harbor
trouble come near them
(t-note)


all together

without injury




until



pinned



help


(t-note)



(t-note)

suffer; cease



strike; sorrow



expedition

 
[ARAMEAN SIEGE OF SAMARIA (6:24–7:20)]
 




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13080
 
1074.
So sayd his Sarsyns all be dene
   that fro that ded thei wold not dwell.
So grett an ost was seldome sene
   os thei sone ordand them omell
Of erlys, barons, and knyghtes kene,
   and commyn folk full ferse and fell.
So went thei furth by cuntres clene
   unto the land of Israel.
And charyottes with vytale
   gate thei full grett plenté,
For that thei wold noyght fayle
   of Samary cyté.

1075.
Unto the cyté rayked thei ryght
   and sone enseged yt all about.
Kyng Joram when he saw that syght,
   forto be ded he was in dowtt.
His enmyse dered hym day and nyght
   with full scharpe shetyng and with schowt.
Unto tho men he had no myght,
   ne to no place he myght pase owt.
When ther vytels ware gone,
   began hungur full grett.
Then ware thei wyll of wone,
   for no more myght thei geytt.

1076.
When whette and wyn and oyle con pase,
   then ete thei up all ther fee.
Thei myght sell the hed of an asse
   for aghtene pennys of moné.
Of two wemen grett pyté was
   that samyn wund in that cyté.
That on of them cryd, “Alas!”
   fell doun before the kynges kne.
The kyng wened that hyr wyll
   had bene mete forto crave.
He sayd, “Woman, be styll!
   of me thou may non have.

1077.
“Yt may not helpe on me to crye,
   I have no mete to mend thi chere.”
“A, lord,” scho sayd, “I aske mercy
   and a ryghtwyse dome for Dryghten dere.
Another woman, lord, and I,
   when fode fayled both ferre and nerre,
We made connand of cumpany
   to ete our barnys both in fere.
And, lord, my barn is etyn,
   and I for hungur spyll.
Away hyrs has scho gettyn
   and wyll noyght forward fulfyll.”

1078.
When Kyng Joram herd hyr thus say,
   that care com to his hert full cold.
He says, “Woman, wend hens away!
   My sorow is more by mony-fold.
The prophett that wyll noyght for us pray
   and myght amend us and he wold,
He sall be done to dede this day
   for all the tales that he has told.”
Wyght men he bad furth wend
   stryke of his hed at home.
Bot God was ever his frend
   and warned hym or thei come.

1079.
He told to other prophettes mo
   that samyn ware wonnand with wyn:
“The kyng hath sent men me to slo,
   bot when thei come this close within,
Spere our gattes, lett them not go!
   Thei sall not dere us with ther dyn.
The kyng sall sone come aftur so,
   and then sall we make his bale to blyn.”
Evyn als he sayd was done:
   tho men ware haldyn styll.
The kyng com aftur sone
   and sayd the prophett untyll:

1080.
“Us thynke, ser, thou dos noyght thi dett,
   that wyll not pray to God for me
And sees how that I am umsett
   with fellows folke and may not flee.”
And with tho wordes for gref he grett,
   the prophet of hym had pyté.
He sayd, “Ser kyng, thi mornyng lett!
   To have helpe hastely I hete thee.
Befor this tym to morn,
   here in this same cyté,
Of wyn and oyle and corn
   sall all men have plenté.”

1081.
The kyng was of that word full fayn
   and his gud Ebrews yyng and old
Bycause thei had oft sene certayn
   all trew that he befor had told.
Bot on ther was spake ther agayn
   and brast owt with thir wordes bold.
He sayd, “Bot God fro Hevyn yt rayn,
   slyke welth may not com in our wold.”
The prophet says, “Thou sall se
   this same that I of mell.
Bot for thou trows noyght me,
   ther with thou sall not dele.”

1082.
Als the prophett sayd, sone aftur fell,
   for he askyd nothyng God to greve.
Besyde that same cyté con dwell
   faur messell men in gret myscheve.
Ylkon con to other tell,
   “We wun here owt of all releve.
The hethyn men is myrth omell,
   to them for mete is best we meve.
For yf thei wyll us slo,
   that suld to us be levere
Then thus to wun in wo
   and fele defawt forever.

1083.
“And yf thei with mete mend our chere,
   then have we not wast all our way.”
So went thei furth all faur in fere
   agayns the evyn on the sam day.
The hethyn oft, or thei com nere,
   ylkon con untyll other say,
“The Ebrews comys in armys clere.
   The feldes ar full of rych aray.”
And sone sum other sayd,
   als yt semed unto ther syght,
“All Ebrews ar arayd
   us forto fell with fyght.”

1084.
Kyng Benedab fast mad hym boun
   to lett all be withoutyn beld.
He sayd, “I hard never swylke a sownd
   of folke sen fyrst I was a chyld.
I warrand Egyp is comyn doun
   with Arabys full wod and wyld.
Fast wyll I flee and take sum toun,
   for, and we byde, we be begyld.”
He hyed hym fast before
   and left all his aray.
Them toyght thei wysest ware
   that fyrst myght wyn away.

1085.
Thei ware so mased in ther mode
   that of ther tressour toke thei none.
Thei forgatte all ther erthly gud,
   that greved noyght when thei ware gone.
The faur seke men full softly yode,
   thei wend have fon men mony one.
Ther lyst was most to lyfes fode,
   and therof fand thei full gud wone.
Thei ete and dranke ther fyll,
   to warn them was no wyght.
And thore thei held them styll
   and rested all that nyght.

1086.
Thei ware up erly on the morn
   and trussed togeydder gold and fee.
And to ther howse thei have it born
   with other gud full grett plenté.
Then went thei furth the gattes beforn
   and told semers of that cyté:
“The hethyn has ther loges lorn,
   and thei ar went, this warrand we.”
Tho kepers told the kyng
   how the faur seke men sayd.
He was glad of that tythyng,
   and hastely he purvayd.

1087.
The chef of all his chevalry
   he bad then wend in wyll and toyght
Aftur this spech forto spyre and spye
   whedder thies sawes bene soth or noyght.
“Thay may lyg in a buschement by
   tyll we out of our beld be broyght,
And fall on us so sodanly.
   Therfor is gud the soth be soyght.”
His knygh went and fand,
   als the seke men con say,
All welthes wele ordand
   and the men went away.

1088.
Thei fand in chambers and in hall
   sylver and gold and garmentes gud
And garners full, both grett and small,
   with whette and flour for mannys fode.
Grett vessels in ther cayves we call,
   with wyn and oyle full styll thei stod,
And stalworthy stedes in ther stall
   with charyottes charged as thei yode.
Thei fand ther vitaylyng
   to releve all that land.
Unto Joram the kyng
   this was joyfull tythand.

1089.
Kyng Joram wyst by sawes sere
   that his enmys war went away.
No mervell yf he had gud chere
   that lang had fun so fell affray.
Sone gart he crye be clarions clere
   and to his Ebrews con he say
That thei suld pase furth fast in fere
   and ylkon geyte gud that he may.
Then, both by hors and man,
   grett ryches have thei broyght.
Every on had plenté then
   that befor had ryght noyght.

1090.
No ferly yf tho folke ware fayn,
   and thei thanked God, os was worthy.
And als thei enturd in agayn
   into the cyté of Samary,
The man that sayd, bot God yt rayn,
   ther mete suld never so multyply,
Evyn in the entryng was he slayn.
   So was fulfylled the prophecy
Qwylk Elysew by word wroyght,
   that sayd he suld yt se,
Bot for he trowd yt noyght,
   no help therof had he.
 

straightway
deed

together

fierce and strong; (t-note)









besieged (encircled)


harmed
(t-note)


(t-note)





did pass away
cattle; (t-note)

eighteen pence; money

together dwelled











judgment from the Lord; (t-note)
(t-note)

agreement; (t-note)
eat our children all together



[the] covenant



sorrow
go

(see note)
if; (t-note)
(i.e., executed)


off

before



together were dwelling with joy
(t-note)
(t-note)
Bar
injure

sorrow to cease






duty

beset
fierce
wept

cease
assure









(t-note)


Unless
such; (t-note)
(t-note)
speak
because; believe; (t-note)





(t-note)
leprous


among [themselves]


preferable

feel emptiness




together
evening


(t-note)
fields







courage; (t-note)
heard


Arabs; (see note); (t-note)

if we remain; deceived












pleasure
they found a great amount



(t-note)



packed up; (t-note)



[the] gatekeepers
abandoned
attest



(t-note)


(t-note)

look and see; (t-note)
truth
ambush nearby; (t-note)
shelter



(t-note)






granaries

cellars



(t-note)
(t-note)

news


many signs; (t-note)


long; experienced such terrible fear


as one; (t-note)













(see note)


(t-note)


 
[A DIGRESSION ON DESPAIR, AND THE EXAMPLE OF JUDAS]
 





13085




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13125



 
1091.
Heyre may we fynd by fygur fayre
   exsempyll schewd to our syght
That no man suld be in dyspare
   of Goddes mercy, ne of His myght.
For als He made both erth and ayre
   and with His Word all wardly wyght,
So is His myght to amend or payre
   aftur ther wyll is wrang or ryght.
Who in dyspare makes end
   so fro all fayth to fayle,
Thei fayr furth with the Fend
   to byde ever in his bayle.

1092.
This case was kend by cursed Judas,
   qwylke sold his Lord that all may sayve.
He trowd not trew for that trespase,
   therfor he wold no mercy crave.
He was so sett with Satanas
   that with a cord that cursed knave
Hanged hymself. And so he has
   his home in Hell and ever sall have.
What syn so we have done,
   yf we to trowth wyll tent,
God wyll forgyf als sone
   as we wyll ryght repent.

1093.
Also we may exempyll se
   and by swylke case have knawyng clere:
All yf ourself so synfull be
   that God wyll not our prayers here,
Of holy men then here wyll He
   that for us profers ther prayer.
Then is yt gud wysdome that we
   send our saynges by sanctes sere
And speke, whyls we have space,
   to them we wott are wyse,
Of God to gett us grace
   sone of our syns to ryse.

1094.
The Fend is qwaynt us forto qwell
   bot yf we lefe his lare lyghtly.
For and we in his donger dwell,
   he makes our myse to multyply,
As yt with Judas fyrst befell.
   For he mystrest in Goddes mercy,
He hanged hymself and is in Hell
   with wo, as his werke was worthy.
God graunt us spech and space
   sone to forsake our syne,
And so to gete His grace
   that we to welth may wyne!
 

figuration

(t-note)

(see note); (t-note)

harm; (t-note)

(t-note)

the Devil




(t-note)







listen






Even
hear
(see note)


prayers by many saints
(time on earth)
know; (t-note)




cunning; destroy; (t-note)

if we; power
errors





(t-note)


 
[THE DEATH OF BEN-HADAD (8:7–15)]
 


13130




13135




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13165




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13185






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13195




13200
 
1095.
Now forthir of this same to see
   our processe playnly to declare:
Kyng Benedab com to his cuntré
   and herd tell of this ferly fare,
How four messell mad hym to flee
   and all wyght men that with hym ware.
Swylk schame ther in his hert had he
   no comforth myght hym cover of care.
For he so fayntly fled
   and lefed all in that sted,
He lay seke in his bede
   in dowt forto be ded.

1096.
With no kyns medcyns wold he mell,
   so was he angred inwardly.
He cald a prince heygh Azabell,
   and bad hym take tressour and cumpany,
And wend furth fast, for nothyng dwell,
   unto that cyté of Samary,
And pray the prophett hym forto tell
   whedder he sall lyfe or dy.
The prince the cuntré knew;
   he went, and sone he fand
The prophett Elysew
   and proferd hym his presand.

1097.
“Syr, the kyng of Syry certayn
   is seke, and hydder he hath me send
To wytt sum certayn of his payn,
   wedder yt sall sesse or sone make end.
He prays thee take this presand playn.”
   The prophett says, “That may not me amend.
Bot have yt home with thee agayn
   and say hym als thou sall be kend.
Lere hym that he sall lyfe
   and in that poynt hym plese;
Els may thou mater gyf
   to do hym more dysese.

1098.
“Bot hardely I to thee hete:
   within few days his ded is nere.”
The prophett then began to grete
   and forto mon and make yll chere.
When Azaell saw hym so lete,
   the cause full fast he con enquere.
He sayd, “For thou sall make thee mete
   to wayte Ebrews with sorows sere.”
Azaell answerd ryght,
   “That ded I wyll deny.
I am no man of myght
   forto make swylke maystry.”

1099.
The prophett hert was hevy os led.
   He sayd, “In thiself this I se.
The kyng of Syry sall sone be ded,
   in lyfe no langer last sall he.
And thou sall stand furth in his sted
   as crownd kyng of that cuntré.
Then sall thou werke by weked red
   and stroy this reme, that rewys me.
Bot I am fayn forwhy
   I sall noyght se that syght.
For of grett eld am I,
   me fayles both mynd and myght.”

1100.
The prince agayn his gate has grayd
   als glad a man as he may gang.
Unto the kyng of Syry he sayd,
   “Ser, thou sall fare well and wax strang.”
Bot yll lechyng for hym he layd
   so that his lyf last not lang,
And with the paynyms so he purvayd
   that he was mad kyng them amang.
He rewled them so in rest
   and mad ther myrthes more.
Thei sayd he was the best
   of all that had bene before.
 

(t-note)
(t-note)
(see note)

lepers


relieve of sorrow; (t-note)

left; place

(t-note)


deal
(t-note)
Hazael
(t-note)




(t-note)


(t-note)









told
Instruct

(see note); (t-note)
discomfort


firmly; assure

weep
moan
behave
(t-note)
yourself fit
ambush; many; (t-note)







(t-note)




through wicked advice
realm; rues
glad because





road has taken



doctoring; (see note); (t-note)

pagans

(t-note)


(t-note)

 
[REIGN OF JORAM OF JUDAH (8:16–24; 2 CHRONICLES 21:4–20)]
 





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13270


 
1101.
Now lefe we this Azaell
   that kyng of Syré hymself con ma,
And Joram, kyng of Israel;
   a lytyll tyme we lefe them twa.
Of that other Joram wyll we tell,
   kyng of Jerusalem and of Juda.
He wedded the doyghtur of Jezabell
   and Kyng Acab doyghtur alswa.
Hyr name was Godolé,
   als clerkes may clerly knaw.
Thrught hyr ordanyng was he
   to lef God and His Law.

1102.
For scho was comyn of paynyms kyn,
   scho mad hym on hyr mawmentes mene.
When he to govern con begyn,
   he slogh up all his kynred clene,
Fyrst his brethyr, he wold not blyn,
   and sythyn his dukes dughty be dene.
Hym toyght no wrschep more to wyn
   then greve them that gud men had bene.
Thus may gud womans wyll
   to God full gretly plese,
And als whore thei ar yll
   gare do full grett dysese.

1103.
To tyrantré so con he tent,
   no gaine myght hym bettur glad.
Sant Elysew unto hym sent
   a byll that his maystur had made.
Ely, whyls he in land was lent,
   mad prophecy in bokes brad,
And of this mater then he ment
   to bye, all yf yt long abad.
For all behoved be done,
   poyntes of ther prophecys,
Auder sythyn or sone.
   The wrytt was on this wyse:

1104.
“Joram, for thou has left the Law
   that Moyses in his lyf con lere,
And unto dewlys thi dedes doos draw
   and of Hevyn has no hast to here,
And for thou has kylled, as we knaw,
   thi brethyr and thi dukes dere,
Her is assygned in this saw
   how thou sall suffer sorows sere.
Enmys sall on thee fall
   and defoule thee before
Thi wyfes and wemen all
   that thou wold wrschept wore.

1105.
“Thi suns and thi doyghturs sall be slone,
   als thou hath kyld other of thi kyn,
And sythyn thiself sall be tone
   with wo that thou sall never owt wyn.
Thi lygham and thi lyms ylk one
   sall rankell and thou royte within,
And medcyn sall thou never have none
   bot fall to fylth for thi syn.
And so sall thou make end
   with wo, as ys worthy.”
All this care was contened
   with poyntes of prophecy.

1106.
And for all suld wurth on swylke wyse
   as God by prophettes purvayd has,
With Ethyopes and Arabyse
   sone all his wyfes unwrschept was.
And all his suns with doles dyes
   bot one, the eldest, Occozias.
Hymself royted and myght not ryse,
   with hydows payn so con he pase.
For unlafull lyfyng
   thus was his endyng vyle.
Then Occozi was kyng,
   bot he lest lytyll whyle.
 


did make; (t-note)

(t-note)
(i.e., Jehoram); (t-note)


also
Athaliah; (see note)






to practice her idolatry; (t-note)

murdered
brothers; (t-note)
brave dukes forthwith
honor







tyranny; attend
(t-note)
Elisha; (see note)

Elijah; remaining


tarried long (took a long time to occur)


Either then



(t-note)
teach
devilry; (t-note)
hear

(t-note)

many; (t-note)



desired to be honored


slain

taken

body
fester; rot


(t-note)





happen in such ways

Ethiopians and Arabs; (see note)
dishonored
sorrow died
Ahaziah
He himself (i.e., Joram) rotted
die
(i.e., contrary to the Law)


lasted; (t-note)

 
[JORAM OF ISRAEL WOUNDED (8:25–29; 2 CHRONICLES 22:4–6)]
 



13275




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13295






13300




13305



 
1107.
Now lefe we the kyng Occozi.
   of other Joram wyll we tell
That soyjornd kyng in Samary
   and led that land of Israel.
He geydderd hym grett cumpany
   with Kyng Benedab more forto mell,
Bycause he had wun with maystry
   Ramatha and thor con he dwell.
Joram wold wyn agayn
   that cyté yf he myght;
Bot his werke was in vayn,
   that boldenese dere he boyght.

1108.
To Ramatha he con persew
   and seged yt on ylka syd.
And sone ther had he note all new:
   with a dart a wound full wyde.
He feled yt so that few yt knew,
   bot ther he myght no langer byde.
He had a steward that heyygh Jew,
   to hym he toke his ost that tyd.
He went to Jezeraell
   softly, for he was sare.
Thore wonned Qwene Jezabell,
   his moyder we ment of are.

1109.
With hyr with lechyng thor he lay,
   for nerre home he myght not pase.
Kyng Occozi, his cosyn, herd say
   how that his eme yll wounded was.
He ordand hym full rych aray
   of hors and harnes that he has.
To Jezeraell he toke the way,
   and of his fare full fast he as.
So sojorn thei in fere
   with Jezabell, the qwene.
Full sone ther sall thei here
   that sall turn them to tene.
 

Ahaziah

remained


Ben-hadad (see note); interfere; (see note)
violence
Ramoth-Gilead



cost him dearly



besieged
troubles

received it [in such a way]; (t-note)
stay
who was named Jehu; (t-note)
host at that time
Jezreel; (t-note)
injured
dwelled
spoke of earlier


medical help
closer to home

uncle


(t-note)
(t-note)
together; (t-note)


what shall; sorrow; (t-note)

 
[JEHU PURGES ISRAEL’S ROYAL HOUSE AND RELIGION (9:1–10:36)]
 


13310




13315




13320






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13375




13380






13385




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13405




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13480




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13495




13500






13505




13510


 
1110.
The nobyll prophett Elysew,
   als God ordand them two omell,
He sent another prophet trew
   and bad hym go and tythynges tell
Unto the dughty duke ser Jew
   in the ost whore he con dwell,
And that he suld anoynt hym new
   forto be kyng of Israel:
“Say God hath ordand so
   that he that forse sall fell
And venge hym on them two:
   Joram and Jezabell.

1111.
“And bad hym stroy up all the kyn
   of Kyng Acab in elka eld,
For he to Nabot dyd grett syne
   that slogh hym falsly for his feld.
And Jesabell gart all begyn,
   and sythyn scho gart with spere and scheld
A hunderth prophettes lyfes to twyn
   for all the welth that thei had in weld.”
The prophett went to Jew
   and told hym all this chaunce,
How the prophett Elysew
   bad hym go take vengance.

1112.
And when he had sayd his errand
   betwyx them two full prevely,
Thore he anoynt hym with his hand
   and cald hym kyng of Samary
And of all els in Israel land,
   and then he wendes his way in hy.
The pepyll asked to understand
   what this sendyng suld sygnyfye.
The duke told them tythyng
   how Joram suld be ded,
And how he suld be kyng
   and stand furth in his sted.

1113.
Then was grett myrth to see them mete,
   so wylly to that warke thei wore.
Thei spred ther cloghes befor his fete
   and raysed hym kyng, ose fell therfor,
And holy unto hym thei hete
   to be his men forevermore.
And then thei gate the gaynest strett
   to Jezarell, for Joram was thore.
When Kyng Joram hard say
   hys ost com on swylke a wyse,
He wend full wele that thei
   had overcomyn his enmyse,

1114.
And therfor was he ferly fayn.
   All yf his wound werkyd hym yll,
He rayse and went Duke Jew agayn
   to welcom hym with word and wyll.
Tyll Nabod feld he passed playn,
   and in that sted then stod he styll,
And with a dart thor was he slayn
   the propfecy to fulfyll.
Lyke to his fader before,
   forto venge Nabod blod
Hys body left thei thore
   to bestes and foules fod.

1115.
Kyng Occozi, his cosyn, saw
   how that his eme to ded was dyght.
Therfor on dregh he con hym draw
   and ordand hym full fast to flyght.
Bot als he rayd furth by a raw,
   the dukes men of hym had syght,
And to hym thrast thei in a thraw
   so that he lost his lyves lyght.
Hys men his body bare
   to Jerusalem cyté.
That comyng was grett care
   to his moyder Godolé.

1116.
Duke Jew with his clene cumpany
   enturd the cyté of Jezeraell.
“Welcom, our kyng!” the folke con crye
   and mad hym homeg them omell.
All this was care and contrarye
   unto the fals Quene Jezabell.
To a hygh tour con scho hy,
   and thore scho cast out wordes fell.
Scho cryd to the duke, “Ser Jew,”
   and oft scho con record,
“Thou fals traytur untrew
   sakles hath slayn thi lord.”

1117.
Scho wered hym with wordes kene.
   He spyrd who spake tho wordes bold.
Thei sayd, “Ser, Jezabell, the quene,
   Kyng Acab wyf ye knaw of old.”
Then at hyr wordes he was full tene.
   He bad two men that wyghtly wold,
“Go cast hyr down yow two betwene,
   so sall hyr sayng sowr be sold.”
To that werke ware thei prest
   and hasted them full fast.
Over the wall thei hyr kest
   that all hyr bowels brast.

1118.
The duke was sett in Joram se,
   resavyd with alkyns reverence ryfe.
Thei mad grett fest with mekyll gle,
   and all thei love God of His lyfe.
On Jezabell yett mynd had he,
   all yf scho had styrd mekyll stryf.
He bad hyr cors suld bered be
   because scho was a kynges wyfe.
Bot with hundes was scho etyn
   or any man com thare.
To bereyng was noyght gettyn
   bot nayles and banes bare.

1119.
Kyng Jew then cald his princese of price
   and sayd, “Sers, loke ye mervell noyght
That I have wroyght now in this wyse,
   both kyng and qwene tyll end broyght.
This is for nokyns covetyse,
   that sall ye wyt wele in your toyght.
Bot God in whom all lordschep lyse,
   He wold that vengance suld be soyght
For Nabod, that nobyll man,
   that was slayn for his feld.
For Sant Elysew sayd then
   bestes suld ther bodes weld.”

1120.
Then answere all that folke in fere,
   “Ser, of this fare ar we full fayn.
For sen God wold that yt so were,
   no gud man suld say thor agayn.”
Then sent he folke both fere and nere
   to seke on ylka syd certayn
Kyng Acab kynred to conquere.
   Thei sessyd not or all ware slayn.
Both man and chyld and wyfe
   full wyghtly had ther wage.
Thei left not on on lyfe
   that langed to that lynage.

1121.
To hym was told then prevely
   that ther was sexty chylder yyng,
Kyng Acab suns, in Samary
   to soyjorn thore in save kepyng.
And to that cyté he sent forthy
   and bad men suld byd for nothyng
Bot stryk of all ther hedes in hy
   and unto hym be lyve them bryng.
To hym tho hedes ware fette,
   and sone he wold not blyn
Bot on the walles them sett
   in sygne of Acab syn.

1122.
Kyng Jew then wold no langer lend
   in Jezeraell so styll to stand.
To Samary then wold he wend,
   the chefe cyté of Israel land.
All folke that were to Acab frend,
   he feld them down wher he them fand,
And all fals prophettes he schope to shend
   that Jesabell thor had ordand.
And all by a sotell sleght
   ordand he yt suld be.
He gart cry all on heght
   throught owt all that cuntré

1123.
That he wold make thor sacrafyce
   to Beall, that was god of Tyre.
And all that wold werke on that wyse
   he sayd suld have his helpe to hyre.
The fals prophettes full fast con ryse,
   to do that ded was ther desyre.
And sone thei soyght for that assysse
   to Samary, both sun and syre.
The kyng this forward fest,
   when thei ware samned so,
Who so lufed Beall best
   into the tempyll at go.

1124.
He sayd, “Tho that have bene abowt
   to wrschep hym with word and wyll,
Within the tempyll sall thei hym lowt
   and all ther sacrafyce thor fulfyll.
All other folk sall byd ther owt
   and pray to hym be stevyn full styll.”
All this was done withoutyn dowt.
   Who lufed hym best sone lyked yll.
The fals prophettes ylkon
   with wyfes and chylder yyng
Into the tempyll ar gone
   at bydyng of the kyng.

1125.
When all the fals prophettes ware past
   into the tempyll of ylk eld,
The dures and wyndows spered he fast,
   and when he them wele festyd feld,
Att ylka corner gart he cast
   als mekyll wod os men myght weld,
And brynt all up with wyndes blast
   that non myght be tyll other beld.
Yf any withoutt ware leved
   that to Beall had tone,
He gart strykke of ther hed.
   so ware thei stroyd ylkon.

1126.
Then gart he layte thurgh all that land
   who wold be boun unto Beall,
And mawmentes, that ware made with hand
   of sylver and gold and gud metall,
He stroke all down and lete non stand
   with the belders in bowre and hall,
So that the folke no favour fand
   bot in grett God that governs all.
Both be est and west
   thei wrschept God allway.
Then regned he in gud rest
   and rewled in ryght aray.
 

Elisha
together


brave; Jehu; (t-note)
company; (t-note)


thus; (t-note)





family; (t-note)
of every age; (t-note)
Naboth
vineyard
caused all to begin
made; (t-note)
end
in possession
Jehu









the land of Israel
goes; haste
(t-note)

the news





gather
willing


promised

took the most direct route
(t-note)
heard how
in such a way
knew



wondrously glad
Even; (t-note)
rose; [to meet] Duke Jehu

Naboth’s field






as food for beasts and birds



unto death was struck


hedgerow; (t-note)
(t-note)
(t-note)



sadness
Athaliah; (see note)



(t-note)

homage among them
(t-note)

haste
fierce

repeat
(t-note)
without cause; (t-note)


worried
asked

(t-note)
very angry
(t-note)

talking be bitterly rewarded



burst out


Joram’s seat (i.e., throne)
every kind of

(t-note)

even though she had stirred
ordered that her corpse; buried

dogs
before
burying; retrieved; (t-note)
[anything] but; bones; (t-note)


honored princes



no kind of covetousness
know well; mind; (t-note)

desired


Elisha; (see note); (t-note)



people as one

since; (t-note)
speak against it
far and near; (t-note)
every
Ahab’s family
until

reward
one alive
belonged



(see note)


therefore; (t-note)
not delay at all
strike off; haste
quickly
brought
(t-note)
(t-note)
sign


remain

go


killed; (t-note)
caused to die
ordained (i.e., by her actions)
cunning trick

caused it to be cried out




Baal
worship




son and father (i.e., all of them)
agreement made
gathered





(t-note)
submit to him; (t-note)
(t-note)
(t-note)
words

pleased







every age
doors; barred; (t-note)
he had them well enclosed

as much wood


remained
given [honor]; (t-note)

destroyed every one


searched
loyal; (t-note)
idols


dwellers

except




 
[ATHALIAH’S REIGN OVER JUDAH (11:1–3; 2 CHRONICLES 22:10–12)]
 



13515




13520






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13530




13535

 
1127.
Kyng Acab doyghtur Godolé
   held all Juda in hyr awn power.
Yt was grett sorow hyr forto se
   hyr sun body broyght on bere.
Hyr brother Joram, ded was he,
   and Jezabell, hyr moyder dere,
And all hyr kyn in that cuntré.
   This was full herd to hyr at here.
Therfor grett athes scho sware
   to venge hyr vilansly
And to stroy les and mare
   the kynred of Kyng Davy.

1128.
Scho sayd, “Sen thei thus begyn
   Kyng Acab kynred forto sla,
Ther sall never none of David kyn
   lyf to be kyng of Juda.”
Scho gart dystroy both more and myn
   that scho wyst ware comyn of that kyn swa.
Bot a yyng chyld away con wyn
   by helpe of Byschop Joiada.
He was hyd with his wyf
   in a chamber full fast,
And so thei sayved his lyf
   unto sex yer was past.
 

Athaliah
(t-note)

son’s body; bier

(t-note)

very hard for her to hear
oaths
villainously
(i.e., everyone)




Ahab’s family

live



Jehoiada; (see note); (t-note)
(I.e., the boy); his (Jehoiada’s); (see note)
bedroom

six years were

 
[JOASH ANOINTED AND ATHALIAH OVERTHROWN (11:4–21; 2 CHRONICLES 23:1–27)]
 




13540




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13585




13590




13595

 
1129.
The chyldes name was cald Joas,
   Kyng Acaze sun forsoth was he.
Bot thore wyst no mo how yt was
   bot Joiada and his mene.
He thynkes with all the helpe he has
   to sett hym in Kyng David se
Over Juda with power to pase,
   qwylke that tyme governs Godolé.
He sent clerkes that he knew
   thurghowt all that cuntré
To prestes and prophettes trew
   and dekyns in sere degré.

1130.
He bad thei suld com certan day
   to Jerusalem at make offerand.
Unto hys sand durst non say nay,
   for he was byschop of that land.
To Jerusalem the toke the way,
   redy to do all his commawnd.
When all ware geydderd in gud aray,
   he sayd, “Sers, ye sall understand:
God heyght to Kyng David
   and furth to hys barn teme
To be kynges of this kyth
   of Juda and Jerusalem.

1131.
“And in this tym is so betyd
   als Godlé hath ordand evyn:
Of David kyn may non be kyd,
   bot thei be stroyd aftur hyr stevyn.
Here is a chyld that I have hyd
   and noryscht now yeres sevyn.
That he be kyng, this wold I byd,
   for nere that kyn is non to nevyn.
And so sall God be payd,
   for els is all owt gone.”
Be all assent thei sayd,
   “Ser, we ar payd ylkon.”

1132.
Into the Tempyll thei toke the gate,
   and Joas for ther kyng thei ken.
Thei raysed hym up in kynges astate,
   in David se thei sett hym then.
The byschope bad men yeme the gate
   for Godolé and for hyr men,
And, yf thei com to make debate,
   to slo them and thei ware slyke ten.
Scho gate hyr men of myght
   unto the Tempyll to gang.
To ded thore was scho dyght;
   sum toyght scho lyfed overlang.

1133.
The gud byschop than Joiada
   cast down the tempyll of Beall
And other mawmentes mony ma
   that men had mad of sere metall.
Then all the kynred of Juda
   gart he sone togeydder call,
And Joas for ther kyng thei ta
   and sett hym in Kyng David stall.
He lyfed in pese and rest
   and wed a worthy wyfe.
To pay God was he prest
   whyls Joiada last in lyfe.
 

Joash
Ahaziah’s son truly

company; (t-note)

David’s throne




(t-note)
deacons of every rank




message dared

they took



promised
children's offspring
land



(t-note)
Athaliah
known
command; (t-note)



mention
pleased


pleased each one



acknowledged

throne
watch


such


death



(t-note)

idols; (t-note)
much metal


took; (t-note)



please; eager
(t-note)

 
[HAZAEL THREATENS JERUSALEM; JEHOAHAZ REIGNS IN ISRAEL (12:17–13:9)]
 




13600




13605






13610




13615




13620
 
1134.
Bot aftur sone so yt befell
   that in his trewth he wex untrew,
Als we sall sone here aftur tell,
   bot fyrst we wyll nevyn noyes new.
The kyng of Syre, ser Azell,
   with mony Sarsyns con persew
To stroy Kyng Jew of Israel
   by the prophecies of Elysew.
Thei brynt town and cyté
   to Samary on ylka syde.
Kyng Jew was fayn to flee
   and fro ther harm hym to hyd.

1135.
He regned twenty-sevyn yer,
   full ryall kyng in rych aray,
And then he dyed with sorows sere,
   when all his welth was went away.
And Joacas, hys sun so dere,
   was crowned kyng aftur his day.
Bot he was noyght, als men may lere,
   lyke to his fader in lefull lay.
Kyng Jew sun Joacas
   now leve we renand thore,
And of yyng Kyng Joas
   now wyll we muster more.
 


grew

mention; (t-note)
Hazael
Saracens (i.e., pagans)
Jehu

burned





years; (t-note)



Jehoahaz; (t-note)


lawful loyalty

reigning
Joash

 
[DEATHS OF JEHOIADA, HIS SON, AND JOASH (12:19–21; 2 CHRONICLES 24:15–27)]
 





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13680
 
1136.
Grett wrschep in his yowth he wan
   ay whyls he in God con trow.
Bot Joiada, that nobyll man,
   dyed aftur then in lytyll thraw,
And Zacary, his sun, was than
   ordand byschop of ther law.
Kyng Joas sone aftur begane
   to yll dedes hym forto draw.
He forsoke Goddes servyce
   and lyfed in mawmentry.
All wroyght on that same wyse
   that used hys cumpany.

1137.
The laws of God hym lyst not lere.
   That was foly, and so he fand.
Bot for hys werkes to God ware dere
   whyls Joiada had lyf in land,
He warned hym by prophettes sere
   his yll lyf to lef of hand.
And Zacary was byschop nere;
   he styrd hym most, I understand.
And for he proved hym playn
   how he his myse suld mende,
In the Tempyll was he slayn
   evyn at the auter ende.

1138.
To serve God as he con stand,
   so was he kyld with Kyng Joas.
All the grett favour that he fand
   in Joiada forgettyn he has.
And for he was to God grocheand,
   his powere sone gun payre and pas,
And full hard hape com hym on hand
   with grett were, os he worthy was.
The kyng of Syre, Azaell,
   that we spake of before,
With grett ost on hym fell
   and stroyd up all that store.

1139.
He cast down castels, townes, and towrs,
   ther myght no strenght agayn hym stand.
He brynt ther burghes, hales, and bowrs
   and all ther frutt wher he it fand.
Kyng Joas than full lowly lowrs,
   and lever he was to lefe of hand
All ryches and erthly honowrs
   then forto lose his lyf in land.
He gafe them all the thressour
   and all the vessel of price
That his elders before
   had sett to Godes servyce.

1140.
Phylysteyns then ware ferly fayn
   for goddes that thei togeydder brast.
Kyng Azaell went hom agayn
   with tressour all withoutyn taste.
Kyng Joas lyfed with mekyll payn,
   for Jerusalem was roved and rast.
Sythyn with hys awn men was he slayn,
   for all that cyté so had he wast.
Of yeres aght and fawrty
   regned he befor his dede.
Then his sun Amazi
   was crownned in his sted.
 

honor
ever while
Jehoiada; (t-note)
in a short time
Zechariah




idolatry




it pleased him not to follow
(t-note)
But because
(t-note)
many
to let go

stirred

sins

altar



killed by

(t-note)
insulting; (t-note)
disintegrate
fortune
uncertainty
(t-note)


destroyed all that possession


(t-note)

halls, and homes
their fruit
frowns
leave behind


treasury
worth




very glad; (t-note)
goods; packed up
(t-note)
without difficulties

plundered
Then
laid waste
forty-eight years; (see note)

Amaziah

 
[ELISHA’S DEATH AND HIS FINAL MIRACLE (13:10–21)]
 





13685




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13740
 
1141.
Long aftur this so yt befell:
   another kyng that heygh Joas
Governd that land of Israel
   aftur his fader, Kyng Jocas.
Sant Elysew then thor con dwell,
   and in that same tyme seke he was.
Kyng Joas when he herd so tell,
   to vysett hym grett hast he has.
His seknes so sore he plenyd
   and sayd, “Ser, and thou dy,
My strenght mon be restrened;
   therfor I am sory.”

1142.
The prophett comforth than the kyng
   and sayd, “The soth we sone sall knaw
Wher thou sall lang lyf in lykyng
   and be owt of thi enmys aw.”
A bow he gart unto hym bryng
   and bad the kyng bend yt and draw
And schote arows at his desiring
   evyn as hym lyst both hegh and law.
Thre arows schott he sone,
   the bow than down he layd,
And when he so had done,
   the prophet was noyght payd.

1143.
He sayd, “Ser, had thou schott all thies,
   thou suld have had lordschep in land
And overcomyn all thin enmyse,
   the Phylysteyns, whore thou them fand;
And now bycause thou schott bot thryse,
   bot thre tyms thou getes the overhand.”
When he had sayd on this wyse,
   the kyng went home full sore wepand.
Then dyed Sant Elysew,
   and for he lufed His Lay,
God sent full grett vertu
   for hym aftur his day.

1144.
When he was dede, his cors thei dyght
   in a grave stalworthy of stone.
A man was murdred on a nyght
   with thefes that had his tressour tone.
And for he suld be owt of syght
   that of ther werkyng wytt suld none,
That ded cors thei had hid full ryght
   thor Elysew was layd alone.
And when yt neghted nere
   to the cors of Elysew,
Yt rayse up hole and fere
   and told this tale for trew,

1145.
How that he was with enmys slayn
   and stylly stokyn under the stones,
And how God gaf hym lyf agayn
   by vertu of tho blessed bones.
So may men see yt was certayn
   that he lyfed nobly for the nones,
When God wold schew swylke power playn
   aftur his ded ofter then ones.
For oft tyms seke and sore
   that to that place persew,
Full wele waryscht thei wore
   and hole of hyd and hew.
 

(see note); (t-note)
Jehoash

Jehoahaz
Elisha
sick
(t-note)
visit
mourned
if you die




(t-note)
(t-note)
Whether; (t-note)
fear


(t-note)
(t-note)
(t-note)
(t-note)

pleased


all these [arrows]; (t-note)


wherever

you will get the upper hand
(t-note)


God’s Law




corpse; (t-note)


(t-note)
thieves; goods stolen
none should know; (t-note)
dead body; (t-note)
where
approached near; (t-note)

rose; whole and healthy
truth


(t-note)
quietly stuck



all the time
openly; (t-note)
more often than once


relieved
made completely whole

 
[JEHOASH AGAINST ARAM; AMAZIAH OF JUDAH (13:22–14:22; 2 CHRONICLES 25:1–28)]
 





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13805




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13820




 
1146.
The kyng of Syre, Ser Azaell,
   that named was an nobyll man,
Dyed aftur sone, and so befell
   that aftur hym regned his sun Adan.
Joas, the kyng of Israel,
   wered on hym and thryse wrschep wan,
Als Elysew before con tell
   by thre arows that ware schott than.
All that was lost before,
   both cytés, town, and toure,
By strengh he con restore
   and gate full grett honoure.

1147.
The kyng of Jerusalem Amasy,
   a herdy man of hert and hand,
Toyght he wold have the maystry
   of hethyn folke whore he them fand.
He sembled sone grett cumpany
   of harnest men thryty thowssand,
And to Kyng Joas of Samary
   sent he a full fayr presand
Of sylver and of gold,
   a thowsand besandes bryght,
And prayd hym that he wold
   help hym with folke to fyght.

1148.
Kyng Joas was of this presand payd.
   Therfor be lyve to hym he lent
A thowsand men ryght wele arayd
   to wend with hym whorso he went.
And when thei ware full redy grad,
   God told Kyng Amazi His entent:
The folke that Kyng Joas had purvayd,
   He bad thei suld agayn be sent.
For and thei with hym yode,
   He sayd yt suld bewarre:
“Ther lyfyng is not gud,
   therfore led them no ferre.”

1149.
This commawndment fro he had knawn,
   for he wold gare no grevance grove,
Tho men he dyd sone be withdrawn;
   that toyght them was grett reprove.
And furth he went than with his awn,
   to Moabyse fast con he move.
He stroyd all that was sett or sawn
   and gatt gold to his awn behove
More then men myght tell,
   and went home agayn.
The folk of Israel
   therfor ware nothyng fayn.

1150.
Bot grett dyspyte them toyght therby
   that he had swylke hape in his hende,
For he refused ther cumpany
   and wold not lett them with hym wend.
Then this prowd Kyng Amazi,
   when God had hym swylke socur send,
He lad his lyf in lechery
   and in Goddes Law hym lyst not lend.
And when prophettes hym blamed,
   in tene he told them tyll
Thei suld be shent and shamed
   bot yf thei held them styll.

1151.
So hegh pride in his hert he has
   hym thynke no prince suld be his peyre.
He sent unto the Kyng Joas
   letturs mad in this manere
That he and all that with hym was
   suld serve hym on sydes sere;
Or els with playn ware wold he pas
   hym and his kyndome to conquere.
Kyng Joas sent agayn
   he was noyght ferd therfore;
Yf he ware mekyll of mayn,
   he sayd Goddes myght was more.

1152.
To tell of all ther toyle that tyd
   wold take long tym or all ware told.
Kyng Amazi for his grett pride
   was putt to myschef mony-fold.
How he had herme, is not to hyde,
   when Kyng Joas had hym in hold.
His awn men gatt hym so on syd
   that he was kylled with cares cold.
Thei broyght hym to bereyng
   in Jerusalem wrscheply,
And after hym was kyng
   his sun that heyght Ozi.
 




Ben-hadad

warred upon








Amaziah


(t-note)
assembled




bezants




gift glad
quickly
(see note)
wherever
fully made ready; (t-note)

provided
should be sent back
if; went


farther



cause; [to] grow
caused quickly to be


Moabites; (see note); (t-note)
sown

(t-note)


not glad



such fortune




led
he cared not to follow


destroyed
unless



peer



every side
war


afraid
great in strength



struggle at that time
before; (t-note)


harm
in his control


burying
honorably; (t-note)

Uzziah; (see note); (t-note)

 
[JEROBOAM II BECOMES KING OF ISRAEL (14:23–28)]
 

13825




13830




13835

 
1153.
Sone aftur this the kyng Joas
   dyed in the cyté of Samary.
Jeroboam, his sun, than was
   kyng crowned of that cumpany.
Unto hym come a prophett Jonas
   and told to hym by prophecy
Agayns the kyng of Syre to pase,
   for sone he suld have vyctory.
He ordand hym and yode
   with baytell ryght arayd,
And all was done in dede
   evyn als the prophet sayd.
 

(see note)





go





 
[STORY OF JONAS (JONAS 1:1–4:11)]
 




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14000




 
1154.
Now in this tym is forto tell
   how God to men musters his myght,
And of grett ferlys that befell
   to this prophet that Jonas hyght,
And how God unto hym con tell
   of Ninivé that day and nyght
Unto His resons ware rebell.
   And for He wold rewle them ryght,
He bad Jonas go preche
   to tho men evyn and morn
And His Law to them teche
   so that thei ware noyght lorn.

1155.
Jonas herd tell of Nynyvé
   and of the folke so fell thei wore
And yll-doers in all degré,
   therfor he dred hym to come thore.
He gate hym schypmen over the se
   and ordand hym full fast therfore
In sum fere cuntré forto be,
   that God and he suld mete no more.
This was a foull foly
   when he so fondly dyd.
God ys ever Allmyghty,
   from Hym may noyght be hyd.

1156.
With maryners full sone he mett
   that sayd thei suld sayle to Cecile.
Gud hyre to have thore he them hett
   to helpe hym to that uncouth yle.
Bot in the se when thei ware sett
   and fro the land full mony a myle,
Swylke stormes blew and on them bett
   thei wened to be lorn in lytyll whyle.
The merchandes them amang
   cast owt the ryches fele,
Bot the storme was so strang
   thei had no hope of hele.

1157.
So when thei ware thus stratly sted
   in poynt that perell never to pase,
Thei kest lotes als ther counsel red,
   and sone the lote fell on Jonas.
Thei layted whore he lay on a bed,
   and asked hym what he done has.
He sayd, “Fro God thus am I fled,
   and all this wo for me yt was.
I knaw to God my gylt
   and all my weked toyght.
Bettur ys that I be spylt
   then tho that trespast noyght.”

1158.
When thei this herd, thei had pyté
   that his lyf suld no langer last.
Bot for yt myght no bettur be,
   into the se thei have hym cast.
Then sayled thei fast to ther cuntré,
   and fro all perels are thei past.
And with a whalle sone hent was he
   that nawder flesch ne bon brast.
Thre days and thre nyghtes
   was he within that whalle.
So con God schew His myghtes
   apon His frendes to fall.

1159.
When thre days and thre nyghtes ware gone,
   that fysch unto the banke hym broyght
And in that land leved hym alon
   whylke God bad fyrst he suld have soyght.
With mornyng then he mad his mone
   and wyst he had unwysly wroyght.
Another tyme God hath hym tone
   and told unto hym eft His toyght:
“Wende unto Nynyvé
   and tell to more and myn:
Both thei and ther cyté
   sall synke down for ther syne

1160.
“In faurty days bot yf thei pray
   and do swylke penance as to Me pays.”
Then Jonas went wyghtly his way,
   he durst no langer make delese.
That cyté was, als we here say,
   so mekyll and so wyde of ways
That unethes that any man may
   a fote pase thrugh yt in thre days.
Jonas enturd within,
   als God had hym purvayd.
To preche con he begyn
   and thus to them he sayd:

1161.
“Your Savyour thus has me send
   to warn yow how His wylles wore:
‘Bot yf ye wyll your myse amend
   and graunt to greve your God no more,
Or faurty days ben comyn tyll end,
   sall ye have sorows sere and sore.
To Hell your cyté sall dyscend,
   als other fyfe hath done before.
Thei used unkyndly syn,
   als ye werke now all ways.
Be lyve bot yf ye blyn,
   your cyté synkes,’ He says.”

1162.
Sone all tho folke of Nynyvie,
   qwen thei herd of this carfull cry,
Graunt ther gylt with grett pety
   and mekly asked of God mercy.
And the kyng of that same cyté,
   the qwene, and all ther cumpany
Laft all ther ray of ryalté,
   and sekes and hayres thei hent in hy.
And so cled sat thei down
   full low both more and lese,
And cast powder over ther croun
   in maner of meknese.

1163.
When thei ware then thus stratly sted,
   the kyng gart be his commawndment
That all folk suld in sekkes be cled
   and to mete suld thei take no tent.
Yyng barns also suld not be fed
   bot that the lyf ware in them lent,
Nore bestes also suld not be led
   to fude or faurty days ware went,
So that both man and best
   suld pray and fast fro mete
Of syns to be releschest
   and forgyfnes to gete.

1164.
When God saw them so benly bow
   and do His bedyng bowsomly
And holly heyght in Hym to trow
   and forsake all ther mawmentry,
Ther lyfyng then He con alow
   and graunt them grace and gud mercy.
This schewys to uus all holly how
   all sall have welth that are worthy.
As the prophet Jonas
   was thre days in the se,
So Cryst in erthe here was
   bered be days thre.

1165.
Then stalked he fro that cyté styll,
   and the pepyll fast with penance prayd.
He luged hym heyght under a hyll
   to se what suld be aftur grayd.
And ay he loked that cyté untyll
   when yt suld synke, os he had sayd.
And for yt stud, hym angerd yll,
   bot God was of ther pennance payd.
And thayr prayer Hym plessed,
   therfor had thei ther boune.
Jonas was yll dysplessed
   with hete of the sun full sone,

1166.
Als yt in somer seson is sene.
   Bot God, that sone may send all seele,
He mad an yvyn grofe grene,
   that umbrayd hym ever ylk dele.
So sat he styll two hyllys betwen;
   that all suld wast, he wend full wele.
And to hymself he sayd in tene,
   “This fayr is fals, fully I fele.”
Bot on the morn be prime
   then wex his mervell more.
The son was clere that tyme,
   and the yvyn was noyght thore.

1167.
Then had he tene for that the tre
   was so away went on that nyght.
God sayd to hym, “Why greves thou thee
   for thyng that is not in thi myght?
Me lykes to sayve now Nynivé
   because thei ar repentand ryght.”
Then sayd he, “Lord, have mynd of me
   that I myght sone to ded be dyght
And fro this lyfe be reft!”
   Thus leve we of ther thynges
And tell furth whore we left
   to end the Boke of Kynges.
 



wonders
is called Jonas

Nineveh
(t-note)


those

abandoned



fierce
evildoers in every way
(t-note)
hired for himself shipmen
(t-note)
far

folly


(t-note)



Sicily; (see note)
Good wages; promised



Such; beat
believed they would be dead

many

living


in dire straits
amid indications
cast lots as their beliefs advised

searched




thought

those who




(t-note)



whale soon seized
nor bone were broken








left

mourning; moan; (t-note)
knew; worked unwisely; (t-note)
Once more; taken


more and less (i.e., everyone)




unless
(t-note)
(t-note)
delays; (t-note)

great; (t-note)
scarcely; (t-note)
on foot; (t-note)






(see note)
Unless; sins

(t-note)
Before; are come to an end
many
(see note)
five
unnatural

Unless you quickly cease




sorrowful
pity



Abandoned; array of royalty
sackcloth and hairshirts they seized in haste
(t-note)
(i.e., everyone)
ashes; (t-note)




caused
be clad in sackcloth; (t-note)
food; heed
Young children; (t-note)
unless; (t-note)

before; spent


released
(t-note)


obediently
humbly
wholly promise; trust
idolatry


show to us
bliss
(see note)


buried




set himself high

ever; unto that city
(t-note)

gladdened; (t-note)

reward





happiness; (t-note)
ivy grow green; (t-note)
covered; every part

knew full well
grief

by [the hour of] prime


(t-note)






It pleases me
repenting

death be taken

(t-note)

(t-note)

 
[ZACHARIAH AND UZZIAH (14:29–15:7; 2 CHRONICLES 26:1–23)]
 

14005




14010




14015






14020




14025






14030




14035




14040






14045




14050






14055




14060






14065




14070




14075






14080




14085     



 
1168.
Kyng Jeroboam we told of before
   of Israel and of Samary,
He dyed when he myght lyf no more,
   when faurty yeres ware gone fully.
And in his sted was crowned thor
   his eldest sun heyght Zacary.
Hym wyll we lefe now styll in store
   and carpe furth of Kyng Ozi.
Jerusalem and Juda
   begane he to governe wele.
Bot sythyn he fayled ther fra
   with foly, that con he fele.

1169.
Ay whyls he was a nobyll man,
   all had daynteth with hym to dele.
He wered on Sarsyns and so wan
   grett wrschep and grett werdly wele.
To by and byg fast he began
   borows fayre and cetys fele,
And wele lufed was he than
   ay whyls he was of lyvyng lele.
Goddes Tempyll ryght he arayd
   and mad gret cost theron,
Evyn as yt was purvayd
   in tyme of Salamon.

1170.
He was chefe of all chevalry
   whore so he come in all cuntré.
On mold was no man so myghty,
   ne none so grett of gold ne fee.
So was he sett in surquidry
   he held non half so gud os he.
Therfor he fell in fond foly
   and past all over his awn degré.
The Jews used ylk yere
   to make a fest of price
And hald that day full dere
   with solempne sacrafyce.

1171.
And so befell on that same day
   Kyng Ozi wyll no langer byd.
Into the Tempyll he toke the way,
   and to the auter he hym hyed.
He revescht hym in ryche aray,
   as byschopes used in that tyd.
“I sall gyf sens,” thus con he say,
   so was he sett in pomp and prid.
To the sensurs he brayd
   and gaf sens full gud sped.
The prestes ware not apayd
   and blamed hym for that ded.

1172.
“Syr kyng,” thei say, “to sayve thi grace,
   swylk offyce is not unto thee.
Non aw at entur into this place
   bot connand clerkes of dygnyté,
As prelates that the power has
   and prestes and dekyns of degré.”
Unto ther tales no tent he tas;
   that boyght he sone, all men myght se.
God toke vengance in hye
   and sent on hym ryght thore
The evyll of meselry.
   so foule was none before.

1173.
He was so lothly on to loke
   that none had lyst with hym to lend.
Bot frendes and felows hym forsoke
   themself fro seknes to dyffend.
The lordes and knyghtes that counsell toke
   owt of the cyté hym to send.
And thor he wonned with wo and woke
   and so in myschef mad his end,
For he tent not to
   presthed ne to prelate,
And putt hymself to do
   that fell not for his astate.

1174.
Be this ensampyll may we se,
   sen vengance thore so sone was sene,
Us ow to honour ylke degré
   of Holy Kyrke that kept is clene,
And noyght to wene ourself that we
   be worthy swylk maters to mene,
Bot als thei deme in dew degré
   to drese our dedes on days be dene.
God graunt us well to werke
   and so to lyfe and end
In trowth of Holy Chyrche
   that we to welth may wend!
 

(t-note)



place
named Zachariah
(t-note)
speak forth; Uzziah; (see note); (t-note)







pleasure
warred against the Arabs
honor; worldly wealth

towns; cities strong

loyal [to God]
(t-note)







On the earth

(t-note)










wait

altar; hastened
ravished himself
in that time
give incense

rushed

pleased; (t-note)





None ought
knowledgeable


he takes no heed



leprosy; (t-note)



loathly; (t-note)
desire
(t-note)

decision made
(t-note)
dwelled; misery

he does not listen to


estate


example; (see note)
since; there; soon; seen
We ought; each rank; (t-note)
Church; pure
think
consider
Except as they judge; manner
arrange; deeds; straightway; (t-note)


(t-note)
bliss; journey

 

 
EXPLICIT LIBRI REGUM.
 
(see note)
 

Go to Book of Job