Book Of Deuteronomy

BOOK OF DEUTERONOMY: EXPLANATORY NOTES

ABBREVIATIONSCA: Gower, Confessio AmantisCMCursor mundiCT: Chau­cer, Canterbury TalesDBTELA 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; MEDMiddle English DictionaryNOABNew Oxford Annotated BibleOEDOxford English DictionaryOFPOld French Paraphrase, British Library, MS Egerton 2710, cited by folio and column; Whiting: Whiting, Proverbs, Sentences, and Pro­verbial PhrasesYorkYork Plays, ed. Beadle. For other abbreviations, see Textual Notes.

2281–2616 Though most of these stories occur variously in Deuteronomy, which is a book that repeats (and reinterprets) the events of the Mosaic time, they are given here in accordance with the ordering and accounting of Numbers, not Deuteronomy. Deuteronomy proper, therefore, is given relatively small attention: lines 2617–77. While the treatment of Numeric ma­terial as Deu­teronomistic seems authorial (see note to lines 2277–80, above), the omis­sion of all but the end of Deuteronomy is in keeping with OFP, which relates only the death of Moses (“Old French Parallels,” p. 209). It would seem, then, that theParaphrase-poet has taken OFP (or its like) as a model for the sequence and extent of his paraphrase, but has opted to alter the location of the division between books in order to produce a more uniform length between books.

2333 To Cades then thei toke the gatte. The Paraphrase-poet has confused the ge­og­raphy of the wanderings in the wilderness, mistaking Paran (lines 2021–22) as a separate location from the oasis of Kadesh. But these seem to be one and the same place, Kadesh being the specific location within the region of Paran. Rather than a sequence of stops as the Paraphrase presents it, the Bible seems clear in presenting a direct migration from Sinai to Kadesh in Paran within roughly nine months of the theophany. It was at this oasis that the Israelites spent the majority of their forty years in the wilderness. Thus most of Numbers, from 10:11 to 21:3, deals with the various events that occurred at the Kadesh oasis. Numbers 13:26 explicitly records that the spies were sent into Canaan from the encampment at Kadesh, and it was there that both the rebellion of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram and the bloom­ing of Aaron’s rod occurred.

2335–40 This second mention of an incident at Meribah is greatly abbreviated. The first paraphrased Exodus 17:1–7; see explanatory note to lines 1897–1916.

2339–40 qwylke was cald / allway the Watur of Stryfe. See Numbers 20:13, which makes the etymology clear: the place was called Meribah, which means “quarrel.”

2341 Becawse of stryvyng in that stede. There is no biblical connection made between Miriam’s death and the various incidents at Kadesh, though one can ima­gine how such a tradition began, given the proximity of the events in the Bible.

2353 Herrott, the kyng of Cananews. There is confusion about whether Arad (Herrott) is a location or the name of the otherwise unidentified Canaanite king. While the poet follows the Vulgate in assuming the latter, other texts (e.g., the Masoretic) take Arad as the name of a town roughly twenty miles south­east of Hebron near Masada.

2407 Seon was strekyn with his awn stave. The detail that Sihon is killed with his own sword is not found in the Bible, nor in HS, nor older sources such as Jose­phus, whose Jewish Antiquities 4.5.2 reports only that Sihon was killed. The idea of a tyrant or enemy struck down with his own blade is a common bib­lical trope, however. David beheads Goliath with the giant’s own blade, for instance, and Judith does the same to Holofernes.

2503–08 And Balam ther mad prophecyse / that Crist suld come amang ther kynd . . . of Israel owt suld spryng. Numbers 24 obviously makes no attempt to read Christ into the interpretation of Balaam’s prophecy. On the sudden intrusion of a Chris­tological reading at this point in the narrative, see the introduction.

2523–32 Numbers 25:1 does not mention Balaam’s role in advising Balak to tempt the Israelites with beautiful young Moabite women, saying only that the men began to have sex with them. The blame of Balaam comes later, in Numbers 31:16, the discrepancy probably being the result of the separate strands of tra­ditional material being redacted together here. The connection of Ba­laam to the apostasy at Peor was a strong one, however, being also reported in 2 Peter 2:15, Jude 11, and Apocalypse 2:14. As K notes (1:clxxxvi), the Para­phrase-poet is probably deriving his account at this point from HS Num. 34 (1239). The poet might also be looking at OFP 21a (Ohlander, “Old French Parallels,” p. 210). Both sources move up the attribution of Balaam’s guilt from 31 in order to meet the initial discussion of the apostasy.

2551 twenty milia went. Numbers 25:9 gives the number dead in this latest plague as 24,000.

2573 He fand thre hunderth thowssand men. This number stands quite against Numbers 26:51, where the total number of Israelites counted is 601,730.

2587 Fyve hethyn kynges. Unnamed here, the five kings of Midian are Evi, Rekem, Zur, Hur, and Reba (Numbers 31:8).

2627–28 And ye sall hald Josue / your duke when I am dede. One of many anachronistic applications of medieval conventions onto the biblical narrative. Note also that Joshua must be duke of the Israelites because God is implicitly king.

2655 A whyt clowde down fro Hevyn dyscend. Neither the Bible nor HS Deut. 20 (1259–60) say anything about Moses ascending into Heaven within a white cloud, a detail, as Ohlander notes, that is akin to OFP 22a (“Old French Parallels,” p. 210). The association of a cloud with Moses’ death goes back to rabbinical literature, but it can also be found in Josephus, Jewish Antiquities 4.8.48, where it is said that “as he was going to embrace Eleazar and Joshua, and was still discoursing with them, a cloud stood over him on the sudden, and he disappeared in a certain valley, although he wrote in the holy books that he died, which was done out of fear lest they should venture to say, that be­cause of his extraordinary virtue he went to God.” Although Josephus seems hesitant to affirm the ascension of Moses, other Jewish sources are clear in making the connection. One tradition even provides a rationale for the cloud: God wrapped Moses in the cloud in order to protect him from the angels who were jealous of the man and might well have attacked him upon his arrival in Heaven. Other Jewish traditions, however, follow the Bible in clearly stating that Moses’ body remains in an unmarked grave yet on the earth, where he was perhaps buried by God Himself (following one reading of Deuteronomy 34:6).

2671–72 Wherfor we wott withowtyn were / his sawle unto Hevyn is hent. The move to the present tense in this unequivocal state­ment hints at an unspoken theo­logical conclusion: from a Christian perspective, Moses can only be in Heaven if he participated in Christ’s Grace at the Harrowing of Hell. The poet’s opinion, shared by most exegetes, is that there is “no doubt” that he did so.


BOOK OF DEUTERONOMY: 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).

2281, 83 Lines indented to leave space for an initial capital; first letter of line 2281 writ­ten in the middle of the space.

2291 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 21v): no heading.

2300 twelft. S: th twelft.

2312 awn. So L, K. S: all.

2342 Moyses. S: y inserted above the line.

2345 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 22r): no heading.

2348 welth. So L, K. S: mony welth.

2358 bot. So L, K. S: be.

2366 fyne. S: inserted above the line.

2368 rowed. So L, K. S: sowed.
syne. So L, K. S: synd.

2373 releved. So L, K. S: rewled.

2397 Seon. So L, K. S: was kyng Seon.

2401 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 22v): no heading.

2404 to. S: inserted above canceled and.

2408 that. S: at inserted above the line.

2410 of. S: inserted above the line.

2432 hym. So L, K. S: þem.

2433 consell. So L, K. S: conse.

2438 mo than. So L, K. S omits.

2439 To fyght. So L, K. S omits.

2441 Balam. S: inserted above canceled Abram in another ink.

2451 Balam. S: inserted above canceled Abram.

2452 cummand. So L, K. S: cunnand.

2453 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 23r): no heading.

2454 Balame. S: inserted above canceled Abram.

2462 Amoryse. So L, O. S, K: Amonyse.

2466 beste wyse. So L, K. S: best awyce.

2467 He. S: inserted above the line.

2474 suld. S: inserted above the line.

2475 Ser. So L, K. S: sers.

2477 that. So K. S, L omit.

2481 Ye. So L, K. S: The.

2492 he. S: inserted above the line.

2503 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 23v): no heading.
prophecyse. So L, K. S: prophecy.

2534 for. So L, K. S omits.
fand. So L, K. S: cowd fand.

2535–36 So L, K. S omits lines.

2537 way. S: inserted above the line, waye or wayd.

2555 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 24r): no heading.

2556 flee. S: flere flee.

2568 Calaphe. S: Car Calaphe.

2570 foes. So L, K. S: fors.

2578 host. So L, K. S: hest.

2580 had. So L, K. S: þen had.

2605 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 24v): no heading.
throly. S: inserted above the line.

2611 cuntré. S: g cuntre.

2622 I. So L, K. S omits.

2629 you avayle. So K. S: abayle. L: avale.

2635 ne. So L, K. S: þen.

2637 how. So S, L. K: hou.

2658 well. S: inserted below the line.

2659 Marginalia in S (at top of fol. 25r): no heading.
 
Print Copyright Info Purchase

Book Of Deuteronomy


DEUTRONOMII.

[AARON’S BUDDING ROD (NUMBERS 17:1–12)]
 





2285




2290






2295




2300






2305




2310




2315






2320




2325



 
191.
Thoo folke, fulfylled with felony,
   that God fed faurty yer before,
To Moyses had thei ever envy
   and unto Aron mekyll more.
Thei sayd all he was unworthy
   to be ther sufferan byschop thore.
Then Moyses had ordand in hye
   to wytt of God qwylke worthy ware.
“Lordyns,” he sayd, “take tent
   to stynt this stryvyng strang.
Fro God sall grace be sentt
   who dos well, and who wrang.

192.
“To morne I byd ther be ordand,
   of all the kynrendys of alevyn
A man to take ther cawse on hand
   In all that nedfull is to nevyn,
And ylkon of them bryng a wand
   Into the Arke of God of Hevyn.
Aron, my brother, his sall stand
   als for the twelft; then ar thei evyn.
Ylk man, that thei not myse,
   sall wrytt his kynraden name,
And Aron sall wrytt on hys
   ‘Levy’ and lay that same.”

193.
So on the morn thei mett on ond,
   the elevyn princese mekyll of price.
And ylkon wrott within his wand.
   And Aron wand for Levy lese.
Then unto Moyses war thei tane
   as formost wytte and most wyse.
In the Arke of God he layd ylkon
   And closed yt at ther awn devyse.
Thei prade with hert and hend,
   ylkon in ther degree,
That God sume seyn suld send
   who suld ther byschope be.

194.
Full sone on the morne thei com clene
   that specialté to spyre and spye.
The alevyn princes all be dene
   fand all ther wandes ded and drye.
Bot Aron wand bayr leves grene
   and flowrs fayr to syght semly.
Therby thei wyst withowtyn wene
   God lufed the lyneg of Levy.
That wand was done to tent
   in the Arke of the Tabernakyll,
For yt suld be on ment
   how God dyd ther merakyll.
 

(see note)(t-note)


even more

their sovereign bishop at that time

learn from God who was worthy
Gentlemen; take heed
cease
shall; (t-note)



Tomorrow
eleven tribes (kinfolk)

necessary to invoke
each one

his [wand] shall
as; twelfth [tribe] (i.e., Levi); (t-note)
deceive
tribe’s
(see note)
lay [it there] in the same way


all together
eleven princes of much worth
wrote [his tribe’s name] upon
Aaron’s rod for Levi stands
taken
since [he was] of the most wit

(t-note)
prayed

sign should send




favor to spy out and see
forthwith
dead and dried up
Aaron’s; bore green leaves
flowers
without doubt
lineage (tribe)
afterward placed

henceforth remembered

 
[THE INCIDENT AT MERIBAH (NUMBERS 20:1–13)]
 


2330




2335




2340
 
195.
Then sessed ther stryve, yf yt ware late,
   Agayns Aron, that ay was clene.
And he stud styll in his astate,
   byschop, os he had eyr bene.
To Cades then thei toke the gatte,
   a soyle that was full seldom sene.
And ther began a new debate
   for watur wantyng, os I wene.
Then Moyses, os God wold,
   owt of the roche full ryfe
Broyght watur, qwylke was cald
   allway the Watur of Stryfe.
 

ceased their anger, though
who always was pure
still remained in his estate
been before
Kadesh; path

(see note)
as I understand
desired
out of the rock abundantly
which; called; (see note)
(i.e., Meribah)

 
[DEATHS OF MIRIAM AND AARON (NUMBERS 20:1, 23–29)]
 





2345




2350


 
196.
Becawse of stryvyng in that stede
   agayns Moyses with yll entent,
Thor Moyses systur Mary was dede;
   for hyr mekyll mone was ment.
And Aron sone wex wyll of rede
   for eld and seknes that was sentt.
He dyed with mony bowsom bede;
   we hope his sawle to welth is went.
His soyne Eleaser
   to byschope then chase thei.
And how thei forthermer fare,
   yett sume dele sall we say.
 

place; (see note)
(t-note)
There Moses’ sister Miriam died
much moaning was made
soon grew helpless; (t-note)
age
died; humble prayers
soul to reward (i.e., Heaven); (t-note)
son Eleazar
chose
further fared
some more will

 
[BATTLE OF HORMAH (NUMBERS 21:1–3)]
 



2355




2360




 
197.
Herrott, the kyng of Cananews,
   when he herd tell the new tythand
How Moyses come with mony Jewes
   and wold with strengh dystroy his land,
With them wold he take no trewse,
   bot sone his ost he had ordand.
And Moyses furth his men remeuys
   tyll thei thoo folke on feldes fand.
Sone ware thei in prese,
   and full smertly can smytte.
The overhand had Moyses,
   and the kyng was dyscumfete.
 

Arad; Canaanites; (see note)
tiding


truce
soon his host; gathered up; (t-note)
moves
those; fields found
the press [of battle]
hard they strike [each other]
upper hand
defeated

 
[THE ISRAELITES COMPLAIN AND ARE PUNISHED WITH SERPENTS (NUMBERS 21:4–9)]
 

2365




2370




2375






2380




2385






2390




2395




2400
 
198.
Thor gatte thei gudes full grett plenté,
   and for that welth thei wold not fyne,
Bot furthe thei sewed more forto se,
   and that suyng thei rowed syne.
For thei come in a wast cuntré,
   wher thei fand nother bred ne wyne.
Therfor begane debate to be
   that Moyses wold thai war putt to pyne.
Bot he sone them releved
   and mend ther myschawnce.
Then was God with them grevede,
   and sone He sent venjance.

199.
Wyld wormes wex them amang,
   full mekyll of fors and fell os fyre,
Qwylke sume with toth, and sume with tang,
   bott and brent them bone and lyre.
To Moyses fast then can thei gang
   for socur os to ther soveran syre.
And all yf thei had wryed hym wrang,
   his wyll was to do ther desyre.
He prayd God them to amend
   and forgyf ther trespasse.
And thor God hath hym kend
   to cast a worme of brasse

200.
And als a seyn hym forto rayse.
   And thus then told He in His tayle:
“Als sone os thei yt sees,” He says,
   “of all hurtes thei sall be hole.”
And so was done by dyverse days,
   wherso thei went be down or dale.
To Arnon Fluyd thei toke the ways,
   that lyged then low in a vayle.
A sutherun syre Seon
   was kyng of Amaryce;
Abowt that flud Arnon
   was he man mekyll in price.
 

There they got goods
cease [the battle]; (t-note)
forth they pursued
pursuing they regretted afterwards; (t-note)
desolate country
found neither bread nor wine

[saying] that; wished; pain
relieved; (t-note)





serpents came up
great of strength and cruel as fire
Which some; tooth; tongue
bit and burned; flesh
quickly; they go
succor as; high lord
accused



there; ordered
serpent of brass


as a sign to raise it


whole

wherever; by hill or dale
Arnon River
lay low in a valley at that time
sovereign sire [named] Sihon; (t-note)
the Amorites
river
a man of much worth

 
[KING SIHON DEFEATED (NUMBERS 21:21–32)]
 





2405




2410


 
201.
And for Moyses hys men wold save
   and hald them sownd by se and sand,
He send to Seon leve to crave
   to lede his folke thrughowt his land.
Bot Seon sayd he suld not have,
   bot sone thei suld be bon in band.
Seon was strekyn with his awn stave;
   Moyses dystroyed all that wold stand.
Ther wan thei welth gud on,
   more then men myght of tell.
In a cyté cald Esmon,
   thor drest thei them to dwell.
 

(t-note)
safe in all ways
to ask for permission
lead his people (i.e., the Israelites); (t-note)

bound in irons
stricken with his own sword; (see note)
(t-note)
won; in abundance
(t-note)
Heshbon
they prepared

 
[DEFEAT OF KING OG (NUMBERS 21:33–35)]
 



2415




2420




 
202.
Whyls thei sojornde in that cyté,
   a land was nere that heyght Basan,
And Og was kyng of that cuntré.
   Of Ebrews herd he tythand then.
He ordand hym ther bayn to be,
   bot God that all gud consell can
Ordand that overcomyn was he,
   and Ebrews all that wrschepe wan.
Thus logyd thei in sere landes
   and conquerd sere kyngdome
And held them in ther handes,
   or thei come to the flome.
 


Bashan

news
determined himself to be their destruction
knows

honor won
lived; several


before they came; river [Jordan]

 
[KING BALAK, BALAAM, AND BALAAM’S ASS (NUMBERS 22:1–24:25)]
 

2425




2430




2435






2440




2445






2450




2455




2460






2465




2470






2475




2480






2485




2490




2495






2500




2505






2510




2515




2520
 
203.
Yett wonned on, ose ther way lyse,
   heyght Balake, a kyng full cruell,
And he was mayster of Moabyse,
   a folke that was full fers and fell.
How Ebrew over all then wan the price,
   be dyverse tythynges herd he tell.
And for thei ware of were so wyse,
   he drede hym more with them to mell.
He cald to hys consell
   to se what ware to do,
To take trewse or batell.
   And thus thei told hym to:

204.
“The Ebrews ar men full myghty
   and mony mo than we may bryng.
To fyght with them ware grett foly;
   ther God is with them in all thyng.
Bot Balam, the prophett, wones herby,
   that God wyll graunt all his askyng.
Make hym go curse that cumpany
   and wary them both old and yong.
Then sall ther god withdraw
   his helpe, wher in thei treyste.
So sall thei lyg full low
   and lyfe evyn as us lyst.”

205.
The kyng in hast, ys no at hyde,
   hath send his servant, os thei ordand,
And Balam wold no langer byd,
   he com furth as the kyng cummand.
His ase stud styll when he suld ryde,
   and Balame bett hym with a wand.
The best spake and told in that tyde
   how that he saw an angell stand
The way hym forto lett.
   Then was the prophett flayde;
Hamward his hede he sett,
   bot sone the angell sayd,

206.
“Hald furth thi gatt, os thou began,
   unto the kyng of Amoryse.
When thou comys to Flom Jordan
   and sees wher the chylder of Israel lyys,
God bydes thee that thou them not ban
   bot blesse them all on the beste wyse.
And He sall be with thee thor then
   and save thee from all yll enmyse.”
Then past the prophett playn,
   evyn os the angell hym lede.
The kyng was then full fayn,
   for he wened well have spede.

207.
All his entent he told hym tyll:
   that he suld wary the Jews allway.
He sayd, “Ser, have us unto an hyll
   wher we may se all ther aray.”
Then was he fayn that to fulfyll.
   Unto the heghtest hyll hasted thei.
And ther the prophet stod full styll,
   and thus to them cane he say,
“Ye chylder of Israel,
   that myrth full lang hath myst,
Tythynges to yow I tell:
   God byddes that ye be blest

208.
“With all gudnese, ase he begane
   To Abraham your fader free,
To Ysac and to Jacob then,
   of whos kynradyn all comyn ar ye.
Ye sall conquer all Chanan
   and have yt in your pawsté.”
Then was the kyng a carefull man,
   when that he herd yt so suld be.
Full sore he was aschamed,
   for he that fyght had soyght.
And Balaam fast he blamed,
   for that he band them noyght.

209.
He prayd to wary them on all wyse
   so that he myght them bett and bynd.
Agayns hys boyde he blyst them thryse,
   and als he sayd, so suld thei fynd.
Then Balac, kyng of Moabyse,
   went away as wroth os wynd.
And Balam ther mad prophecyse
   that Crist suld come amang ther kynd.
He sayd a sterne suld ryse
   of Jacob begynnyng,
And a wand of mekyll price
   of Israel owt suld spryng,

210.
Qwylke suld conquere kyng and cuntré
   of Moabyse in mony a sted.
And suns of Seth, also sayd he,
   suld be hent from handes of dede.
The stern to Crist may lykynd be
   to lyght them that lay low os led;
The wand, Mary his moyder fre,
   that suld com of the Jew kynred.
Thes wordes was fro God sent.
   Kyng Balake cursed that qwylle,
Bot Balaam, or ever he went,
   he wroyght a weked wyle.
 

dwelled one, as their direction took them
called Balak
the Moabites
cruel
won the glory
by diverse tidings
because; war
feared; to meddle; (t-note)
council; (t-note)
[it] were [best]
truce or battle




many more [in number]; (t-note)
folly; (t-note)

Balaam; lives close by; (t-note)


trouble
their
in whom they trust [so much]
lie very low (be brought low)
it pleases us


there is nothing to hide
as they instructed
delay; (t-note)
(t-note)
ass stood still; (t-note)
beat; stick; (t-note)
beast spoke; place

prevent
terrified
his (the ass’s) head



gait, as you
(t-note)
the River Jordan
children; lie
curse
from this wise beast; (t-note)
there at that time; (t-note)
wicked enemies
went; openly
led him
very glad
had high hopes to have success


his (Balaam’s) intent he (Balak) told to him
how he should fear; always; (t-note)
(Balaam); take; (t-note)
their numbers
he (Balak) happy to fulfill that [request]; (t-note)
highest


(t-note)
happiness so long have missed
Tidings






lineage you are all come

power
sorrowful
(t-note)



cursed


curse them in all ways
beat and bind [in irons]
command he (Balaam) blessed
experience

angry as wind
(see note)(t-note)
peoples
star

scepter of great glory
would spring forth


Which should
Moabites in all places
the children
seized by the hands of death
star; likened
as low as lead
noble mother
from the Jewish kindred
were
time
before he left
wicked stratagem

 
[APOSTASY AT PEOR DUE TO BALAAM (NUMBERS 25:1–18, 31:16)]
 





2525




2530






2535




2540






2545




2550




2555






2560




2565



 
211.
He saw the kyng was not well payd,
   therfor sum comforth wold he kene.
“Ser, I sall thee lere,” he sayd,
   “to stroye Moyses and all his men.
Gayr damsels be gayly gratt
   to seke in cytes, neyn or ten.
And when thei ar ryghtly arayde,
   unto the Ebrews send them then.
Grett myrth ther sall thei make
   to yong men evyn and morne
And gayr them God forsake.
   So sall thei sone be lorne.”

212.
The kyng hath sent, os he can say,
   for fayrest wemen that men fand.
He did theym cloth in rych array
   and thus to theym he command,
“Loke wysly that ye wend your way
   to our enmyse of uncowth land,
And fowndes to gayr them leyf ther lay.
   Lett Belfagor be ther warrand.”
Tho wemen werly soyght
   this falshed to fulfyll.
The Ebrews groched noyght
   forto werke all ther wyll.

213.
Thei leved the law that Moyses lent
   and unto mawmentré mad ther mene.
And for thei so to syn assent,
   God was greved unto them ylkon.
To Moyses told He His entent
   and bad tyte venjance suld be tone.
With wo so twenty milia went,
   and wemen war full wyll of wone.
Fynnes, a full fell man,
   Eleazar son was hee,
Sloght ther maysters than;
   the remnand fast can flee.

214.
And forthi that this Fyneys
   dystroyed them that ware Goddes enmyse,
Forto be byschop God hym chese
   aftur his fader for His servys.
And for His sake He grawnt peyse
   unto all Ebrews that ware wyse,
And sayd He suld ther kynd encresse
   unto grett reverence forto ryse.
With Moyses then was none
   that he lede over the se,
Bot thei ware ded ylkon
   bot Calaphe and Josue.
 

very pleased
make known
teach; (see note)
[how] to destroy
Cause damsels that are finely attired
to be sought out in the cities, nine
rightly gathered
Hebrews

evening and morning
cause them to forsake God
soon be lost


as
for the fairest women that men could find; (t-note)
clothe in rich garments; (t-note)
you make your way
(t-note)
enemies of foreign
hasten to cause them to leave their faith
Baal-peor be their protector
carefully

complained not



abandoned
idolatry cast their lots
because they thus to sin assented


quick vengeance should be taken
20,000 died; (see note)
and women[, too,] were fully without hope
Phinehas; dangerous

Slaughtered their [the idolaters’] teachers; (t-note)
remnant; (t-note)


because
enemies
chose
service
peace (life)
were wise
their lineage increase




Caleb and Joshua; (t-note)

 
[CENSUS OF THE NEW GENERATION (NUMBERS 26:1–65)]
 


2570




2575




2580
 
215.
Then commawnd God unto Moysen,
   for he suld fayn his foes to fere,
That he suld reckyn the remnand then
   of all tho that myght armys bere.
He fand thre hunderth thowssand men
   that myghty were to wend in were
Withowtyn prestes and clerkes to ken,
   qwylke twenty-thre milia ware.
God bad Moyses be wyse
   and that his host ware grayde
To stroye the Moabyse,
   that had them thor betrayd.
 


should be glad to make his enemies afraid; (t-note)
count the remnant
bear arms
(see note)

to count
which were 23,000 [in number]

were prepared
destroy the Moabites
there; (t-note)

 
[HOLY WAR AGAINST MIDIAN (NUMBERS 31:1–54)]
 





2585




2590






2595




2600




 
216.
Moyses withowtyn more abayd,
   twelfe milia toke he them amang;
Ther leder Fyneys he made
   them forto gyd wher thei suld gang.
To Moabyse full ryght thei rode
   and stroyde them all with strokes strang.
Fyve hethyn kynges with cuntreys brayd
   in few days to ded thei dang.
Balam thei have not leved,
   that fyrst conseld the kyng:
Fynyes stroke of his hed
   for his fals consellyng.

217.
All batels thus thei broyght to end;
   then past thei home with mekyll pride.
No tong in Erth myght tell the tend
   Of welth that thei have in that tyde.
Ryght to the flome all folke was frend;
   to do them dere durst non abyd.
Two of ther lyneg ther wold lend,
   bycawse the land was large and wyd;
That was Gad and Ruben.
   The kynrendes toke to rede
And asked leve of Moysen
   to dwell styll in that stede.
 

more waiting
12,000 [men]
Phinehas
guide; should go
the Moabites
slaughtered
heathen; countries broad; (see note)
they beat to death
left [alive]
counseled
struck off



battles
went; much
tongue on Earth; tenth [part]
time
river [Jordan]; were [now] friendly
none dared to cause them hurt
lineage (i.e., twelve tribes); remain


These kindreds; advice
permission
place

 
[GAD AND REUBEN DESIRE TO STAY IN JAZER (NUMBERS 32:1–42)]
 

2605




2610




2615

 
218.
Thus prayde thei throly, all and sume,
   bot Moyses made this connand then
That thei suld passe over the flome
   and helpe to conquere Canan.
And when thei Gerico had wun
   into ther boundom, best and man,
Unto that cuntré suld thei come
   and be ther styll, os thei begane.
Ten cytes made Moyses
   in tyme thei sojournd thore,
To them that cuntré chese
   to have and hald ever moyre.
 

earnestly; (t-note)
pact
river
Canaan
Jericho
their possession, beast
they should; (t-note)
be there again, as
cities
in [the] time they sojourned there
For those who; chose

 
[MOSES’ DEPARTING WORDS TO THE PEOPLE (DEUTERONOMY 31–34)] 
 




2620




2625






2630




2635




2640






2645




2650






2655




2660






2665




2670




2675     

 
219.
Then Moyses both with hert and hand
   loved his God of grett powere,
For he wyst that he suld from them wend.
   He told the folke his consell clere.
He sayd, “Sers, I sall sun make end,
   for Canan come I not nere.
Kepes commawnmentes, os I have kend,
   and other law loke ye non lere.
Elyazar sall byschop be
   to stand in Aron stede,
And ye sall hald Josue
   your duke when I am dede.

220.
“That on may mekyll you avayle
   that God yow here gyf mynd and myght;
That other sall wend in batell
   and fell your foys with fors in fyght.
Therfor in fayth loke ye not fayle,
   bot ever in trowth be trew and ryght.
Then nawder enmyse, ne yll consell
   sall do yow dere be day or nyght.
Have mynd how God hath wroght
   for yow and your ofspryng.
Loke ye forgeyt Hym noyght,
   bot thanke Hym over all thyng.

221.
“Sone sall ye passe Flom Jordan
   to the land that yow levest wore.
And when ye come to Canan
   and hath all that God heyght yow thore,
Loke ye dystroy all mawmentes then
   of fendes that ye fynd yow before,
And part the land as ye well can
   aftur your lynage, lesse and more.
Whoso hath most meneye,
   born all of a blode,
Them nedes the most cuntré
   to fynd ther bestes fode.”

222.
As Moyses thus his consell kend
   to can the law and kepe yt well,
A whyt clowde down fro Hevyn dyscend
   and coverd hym over ylka dele.
He was away when thei lest wend,
   bot wheder ward wyst thei not well.
Ne more thei herd of his end,
   ne his grave cowd no man fynd ne fele.
Thei soyght and sayd “Alas!”
   with mornyng them amang,
Os yt no wonder was,
   for he had led them lang.

223.
Moyses mad end in this maner.
   Full mekyll mone was for hym ment.
To God his dedes war ever dere,
   for trew in trowth was his entent.
Full leve he was Goddes law to lere,
   os long os he on lyfe was lent.
Wherfor we wott withowtyn were
   his sawle unto Hevyn is hent.
This boke thus end wyll we
   that made is of Moysen,
And tell furth of Josue.
   God grawnt us myrth. Amen.
 



knew; go

soon make an end [of life]
near; (t-note)
Keep the commandments, as; taught
not learn
Eleazar
Aaron’s place
consider Joshua; (see note)



That one (Eleazar); avail; (t-note)

That other (Joshua) shall go
foes; force
in your faithfulness

neither enemies, nor wicked counsel; (t-note)
wound by
(t-note)





the River Jordan
you were promised

promised to you there
idols
fiends
divide
lineage
the most numbers
a [single] bloodline
They require
find food for their beasts


counsel told
know
descended; (see note)
entirely
least knew
to where they knew not; (t-note)
(t-note)
nor; could; nor feel

mourning
As it was not surprising
for a long time



A very great moaning
deeds were always dear

glad; know
as long as he was living
know without doubt; (see note)
gone



joy

Go to Book of Joshua