Bible (Wycliffe)/Esther

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43448Wycliffe's Bible — Esther

Chapter 1


1 In the daies of kyng Assuerus, that regnede fro Ynde `til to Ethiopie, on an hundrid and seuene and twenti prouynces, whanne he sat in the seete of his rewme,

2 the citee Susa was the bigynnyng of his rewme.

3 Therfor in the thridde yeer of his empire he made a greet feeste to alle hise princes and children, the strongeste men of Persis, and to the noble men of Medeis, and to the prefectis of prouynces, bifor him silf,

4 to schewe the richessis of the glorie of his rewme, and the gretnesse, and boost of his power in myche tyme, that is, an hundrid and `foure scoor daies.

5 And whanne the daies of the feeste weren fillid, he clepide to feeste al the puple that was foundun in Susa, fro the moost `til to the leeste; and he comaundide the feeste to be maad redi bi seuene daies in the porche of the orcherd and wode, that was set with the kyngis ournement and hond.

6 And tentis of `the colour of the eir, and of gold, and of iacynct, susteyned with coordis of bijs, and of purpur, hangiden on ech side, whiche weren set in cerclis of yuer, and weren vndur set with pilers of marble; also seetis at the maner of beddis of gold and of siluer `weren disposid on the pawment arayede with smaragde and dyuerse stoon; which pawment peynture made fair bi wondurful dyuersite.

7 Sotheli thei, that weren clepid to meet, drunkun in goldun cuppis, and metes weren borun in with othere `and othere vessels; also plenteuouse wiyn, and `the best was set, as it was worthi to the greet doyng of the kyng.

8 And `noon was that constreynede `men not willynge to drynke; but so the kyng hadde ordeyned, `makynge souereyns of hise princes `to alle boordis, that ech man schulde take that, that he wolde.

9 Also Vasthi, the queen, made a feeste of wymmen in the paleis, where kyng Assuerus was wont to dwelle.

10 Therfor in the seuenthe dai, whanne the kyng was gladdere, and was hoot of wiyn aftir ful myche drinkyng, he comaundide Nauman, and Baracha, and Arbana, and Gabatha, and Zarath, and Abgatha, and Charchas, seuene oneste and chast seruauntis, `that mynistriden in his siyt,

11 that thei schulden brynge in bifor the kyng the queen Vasti, with a diademe set on hir heed, to schewe hir fairnesse to alle the puplis and prynces; for sche was ful fair.

12 And sche forsook, and dispiside to come at the comaundement of the kyng, which he hadde sent bi the oneste and chast seruauntes. Wherfor the kyng was wrooth, and kyndlid bi fulgreet woodnesse; and he axide the wise men,

13 whiche bi the `kyngis custom weren euere with hym, and he dide alle thingis bi the counsel of hem, kunnynge the lawis and ritis of grettere men;

14 forsothe the firste and the nexte weren Carsena, and Sechaaba, Admatha, and Tharsis, and Mares, and Marsana, and Manucha, seuene duykis of Persis and of Medeis, that sien the face of the kyng, and weren wont to sitte the firste aftir hym;

15 `the kyng axide hem, to what sentence the queen Vasthi schulde be suget, that nolde do the comaundement of kyng Assuerus, which he hadde sent bi the onest and chast seruauntis.

16 And Manucha answeride, in audience of the kyng and of the pryncis, The queen Vasthi hath not oneli dispisid the kyng, but alle the pryncis and puplis, that ben in alle prouynces of kyng Assuerus.

17 For the word of the queen schal go out to alle wymmen, that thei dispise her hosebondis, and seie, Kyng Assuerus comaundide, that the queen Vasthi schulde entre to hym, and sche nolde.

18 And bi this saumple alle the wyues of prynces of Persis and of Medeis schulen dispise the comaundementis of hosebondis; wherfor the indignacioun of the kyng is iust.

19 If it plesith to thee, `a comaundement go out fro thi face, and `be writun bi the lawe of Persis and of Medeis, which it is vnleueful to be passid, that Vasthi entre no more to the kyng, but anothir womman, which is betere than sche, take `the rewme of hir.

20 And be this puplischid in to al the empire of thi prouynces, which is ful large, that alle wyues, both of grettere men and of lesse, yyue onour to her hosebondis.

21 His counsel pleside the kyng and the prynces, and the kyng dide bi the counsel of Manucha;

22 and he sente pistlis bi alle the prouyncis of his rewme, as ech folk myyte here and rede, in dyuerse langagis and lettris, that hosebondis ben prynces and the grettere in her housis; and `he sente, that this be pupplischid bi alle puplis.

Chapter 2


1 Therfor whanne these thingis weren doon, aftir that the indignacioun of kyng Assuerus was coold, he bithouyte of Vasthi, and what thingis sche hadde do, ethir what thingis sche suffride.

2 And the children and the mynystris of the kyng seiden to `the kyng, Damyselis, virgyns `and faire, be souyt to the kyng; and `men ben sent,

3 that schulen biholde bi alle prouinces damesels faire and virgyns; and brynge thei hem to the citee Susa, and bitake thei in to the hows of wymmen, vndur the hond of Egei, the onest seruaunt and chast, which is the souereyn and kepere of the kyngis wymmen; and take the damesels ournement of wymmen, and other thingis nedeful to vsis.

4 And which euer damesele among alle plesith the iyen of the kyng, regne sche for Vasti. The word pleside the kyng; and he comaundide to be don so, as thei counceliden.

5 Forsothe a man, a Jew, was in the citee Susa, Mardoche bi name, the sone of Jair, sone of Semei, sone of Cys, of the generacioun of Gemyny;

6 that was translatid fro Jerusalem in that tyme, wherynne Nabugodonosor, kyng of Babiloyne, hadde translatid Jechonye, kyng of Juda;

7 which Mardoche was the nurschere of Edissa, the douyter of his brothir, which douytir was clepid Hester bi anothir name, and sche hadde lost bothe fadir and modir; sche was ful fair, and semeli of face; and whanne hir fadir and modir weren deed, Mardoche `purchaside hir in to a douytir to hymsilf.

8 And whanne the comaundement of the kyng was ofte pupplischid, and bi his comaundement many faire virgyns weren brouyt to Susa, and weren bitakun to Egey, the onest seruaunt and chast, also Hester among othere damesels was bytakun to hym, that sche schulde be kept in the noumbre of wymmen.

9 And sche pleside hym, and foond grace in his siyt, that he hastide the ournement of wymmen, and bitook to hir her partis, and seuene the faireste damesels of the kyngis hows; and he ournede and araiede bothe hir and damesels suynge hir feet.

10 And `sche nolde schewe to hym hir puple and hir cuntrei; for Mardoche hadde comaundid to hir, that in al maner sche schulde be stille of this thing.

11 And he walkide ech dai bifor the porche of the dore, in which the chosun virgyns weren kept, and he dide the cure of the helthe of Hester, and wolde wite, what bifelde to hyr.

12 And whanne the tyme of alle damesels bi ordre was comun, that thei schulden entre to the kyng, whanne alle thingis weren fillid that perteyneden to wymmens atire, the tweluethe monethe was turned; so oneli that thei weren anoyntid with oile of `myrte tre bi sixe monethis, and bi othere sixe monethis `thei vsiden summe pymentis and swete-smellynge oynementis.

13 And thei entriden to the kyng, and what euer thing perteynynge to ournement thei axiden, thei token; and thei weren araied as it pleside hem, and passiden fro the chaumbre of wymmen to the kyngis bed.

14 And sche that hadde entrid in the euentid, yede out in the morwetid; and fro thennus thei weren led forth in to the secounde housis, that weren vndur the hond of Sagazi, onest seruaunt and chast, that was gouernour of the kyngis concubyns; and sche hadde not power to go ayen more to the kyng, no but the kyng wolde, `and had comaundid hir to come bi name.

15 Sotheli whanne the tyme was turned aboute bi ordre, the dai neiyede, wherynne Hester, the douyter of Abiahel, brother of Mardoche, `whom he hadde purchasid in to a douyter to hym silf, ouyte entre to the kyng; and sche axide not wymmenus ournement, but what euer thingis Egei, the onest seruaunt and chast, kepere of virgyns, wolde, he yaf these thingis to hir to ournement; for sche was ful schapli, and of fairnesse that may not liytli be bileuyd, and sche semyde graciouse and amyable to the iyen of alle men.

16 Therfor sche was lad to the bed of kyng Assuerus, in the tenthe monethe, which is clepid Cebeth, in the seuenthe yeer of his rewme.

17 And the kyng feruentli louyde hir more than alle wymmen, and sche hadde grace and mercy bifor hym ouer alle wymmen; and he settide the diademe of rewme `on hir heed, and he made hir to regne in the stide of Vasthi.

18 And he comaundide a ful worschipful feeste to be maad redi to alle hise princes and seruauntis, for the ioynyng togidere and the weddyngis of Hester; and he yaf rest to alle prouynces, and yaf yiftis aftir the worschipful doyng of a prynce.

19 And whanne virgyns weren souyt also the secounde tyme, and weren gaderid togidere, Mardochee dwellide at the yate of the kyng.

20 Hester hadde not yit schewid hir cuntrei and puple, bi comaundement of hym; for whi what euer thing he comaundide, Hester kepte, and sche dide so alle thingis, as sche was wont in that tyme, in which he nurschide hir a litil child.

21 Therfor in that tyme, wherynne Mardochee dwellide at the `yate of the king, Bagathan and Thares, twei seruauntis of the kyng, weren wrothe, `that weren porteris, and saten in the first threisfold of the paleis; and thei wolden rise ayens the kyng, and sle hym.

22 Which thing was not hid fro Mardochee, and anoon he telde to the queen Hester, and sche to the kyng, bi the name of Mardochee, that hadde teld the thing to hir.

23 It was souyt, and it was foundun, and ech of hem was hangid in a iebat; and `it was sent to storyes, and was bitakun to bookis of yeeris, `bifor the kyng.

Chapter 3


1 Aftir these thingis kyng Assuerus enhaunside Aaman, the sone of Amadathi, that was of the kynrede of Agag, and settide his trone aboue alle the princes whiche he hadde.

2 And alle the seruauntis of the kyng, that lyuyden in the yatis of the paleis, kneliden, and worschipiden Aaman; for the emperour hadde comaundid so to hem; Mardochee aloone bowide not the knees, nethir worschipide hym.

3 `To whom the children of the kyng seiden, that saten bifore at the yatis of the paleis, Whi kepist `thou not the comaundementis of the kyng, othere wise than othere men?

4 And whanne thei seiden ful ofte these thingis, and he nolde here, thei tolden to Aaman, `and wolden wite, whether he contynuede in sentence; for he hadde seid to hem, that he was a Jew.

5 And whanne Aaman hadde herd this thing, and hadde preued `bi experience, that Mardochee bowide not the kne to hym, nethir worschipide hym, he was ful wrooth,

6 and he ledde for nouyt to sette hise hondis on Mardochee aloone; for he hadde herd, that Mardochee was of the folc of Jewis, and more he wolde leese al the nacioun of Jewis, that weren in the rewme of Assuerus.

7 In the firste monethe, whos nam is Nysan, in the tweluethe yeer of the rewme of Assuerus, lot was sent in to a vessel, which lot is seid in Ebrew phur, `bifor Aaman, in what dai and in what monethe the folk of Jewis ouyte to be slayn; and the tweluethe monethe yede out, which is clepid Adar.

8 And Aaman seide to the king Assuerus, A puple is scaterid bi alle the prouynces of thi rewme, and is departid fro it silf togidere, and vsith newe lawis and cerymonyes, and ferthermore it dispisith also the comaundementis of the kyng; and thou knowest best, that it spedith not to thi rewme, `that it encreesse in malice bi licence.

9 If it plesith thee, `deme thou that it perisch, and Y schal paie ten thousynde of talentis to the keperis of thi tresour.

10 Therfor the kyng took `fro his hond the ryng which he vside, and yaf it to Aaman, the sone of Amadathi, of the kynrede of Agag, to the enemy of Jewis.

11 And the kyng seide to hym, The siluer, which thou bihiytist, be thin; do thou of the puple that, that plesith thee.

12 And the scryuens of the kyng weren clepid in the firste monethe Nysan, in the threttenthe dai of the same monethe; and it was writun, as Aaman hadde comaundid, to alle prynces of the kyng, and to domesmen of prouynces and of dyuerse folkis, that ech folk myyte rede and here, `for dyuersite of langagis, bi the name of kyng Assuerus. And lettris aseelid with

13 the ring of the kyng weren sent bi the corouris of the kyng to alle hise prouynces, that thei schulden sle, and `do awei alle Jewis, fro a child to an eld man, litle children and wymmen, in o dai, that is, in the thrittenthe dai of the tweluethe monethe, which is clepid Adar; and that thei schulden take awei the goodis of Jewis.

14 Forsothe the sentence `in schort of the pistlis was this, that alle prouyncis schulden wite, and make hem redi to the forseid dai. And the coroures, that weren sent, hastiden to fille the comaundement of the kyng; and anoon the comaundement hangide in Susa, `while the kyng and Aaman maden feeste, and `the while that alle Jewis wepten, that weren in the citee.

Chapter 4


1 And whanne Mardochee hadde herd these thingis, he to-rente hise clothis, and he was clothid in a sak, and spreynt aische on the heed, and he criede with greet vois in the street of the myddis of the citee, and schewide the bitternesse of his soule,

2 and he yede with this yellyng `til to the yatis of the paleis; for it was not leueful a man clothid with a sak to entre in to the halle of the kyng.

3 Also in alle prouynces, citees, and places, to which the cruel sentence of the king was comun, was greet weilyng, fastyng, yellyng, and wepyng anentis the Jewis, and many Jewis vsiden sak and aische for bed.

4 Sotheli the dameselis and onest seruauntis and chast of Hester entriden, and telden to hir; which thing sche herde, and was astonyed; and sche sente a cloth to Mardochee, that whanne the sak was takun a wei, he schulde clothe hym therynne; which cloth he nolde take.

5 And aftir that Athac, the onest seruaunt and chast, `was clepid, whom the kyng hadde youe a mynystre to hir, sche comaundide, that he schulde go to Mardochee, and lerne of hym, whi he dide this thing.

6 And Athac yede out, and yede to Mardochee stondynge in the street of the citee, bifor the dore of the paleis;

7 which schewide to Athac alle thingis that bifelden, hou Aaman hadde bihiyt to bryng siluer in to tresours of the kyng for the deeth of Jewis.

8 Also he yaf to Athac the copie of the comaundement, that hangide in Susa, to schewe to the queen, and to moneste hir for to entre to the kyng, and to biseche hym for hir puple.

9 And Athac yede ayen, and telde to Hester alle thingis, whiche Mardochee hadde seid.

10 And sche answeryde to hym, and seide, that he schulde seie to Mardochee, Alle the seruauntis of the kyng,

11 and alle prouyncis that ben vndur his lordschip, knowen, that whether a man ether a womman not clepid entrith in to the ynnere halle of the kyng, he schal be slayn anoon with outen ony tariyng, no but in hap the kyng holdith forth the goldun yerde `to hym for `the signe of merci, and he mai lyue so; therfor hou mai Y entre to the kyng, which am not clepid to hym now bi thritti daies?

12 And whanne Mardochee hadde herd `this thing, he sente efte to Hester,

13 and seide, Gesse thou not, that thou schalt delyuer oonli thi lijf, for thou art in the hows of the kyng, bifor alle Jewis;

14 for if thou art stille now, Jewis schulen be delyuered bi another occasioun, and thou and the hows of thi fadir schulen perische; and who knowith, whether herfor thou camist to the rewme, that thou schuldist be maad redi in sich a tyme?

15 And eft Hester sente these wordis to Mardochee,

16 Go thou, and gadere togidere alle Jewis, whiche thou fyndist in Susa, and preie ye for me; ete ye not, nether drynke ye in thre daies and thre nyytis, and Y with myn handmaydis schal fast in lijk maner; and thanne Y not clepid schal entre to the kyng, and Y schal do ayens the lawe, and Y schal bitake me to deth and to perel.

17 Therfor Mardochee yede, and dide alle thingis, whiche Hester hadde comaundid to hym.

Chapter 5


1 Forsothe in the thridde dai Hester was clothid in `the kyngis clothis, and stood in the porche of the kyngis hows, that was `the ynnere ayens the kyngis halle; and he sat on his trone, in the consistorie of the paleis, ayens the dore of the hows.

2 And whanne he hadde seyn Hester, the queen, stondynge, sche pleside hise iyen, and he helde forth ayens hir the goldun yerde, which he helde in the hond; and sche neiyide, and kisside the hiynesse of his yerde.

3 And the king seide to hir, Hester, the queen, what `wolt thou? what is thin axyng? Yhe, thouy thou axist the half part of my rewme, it schal be youun to thee.

4 And sche answeride, If it plesith the kyng, Y biseche, that thou come to me to dai, and Aaman with thee, to the feeste, which Y haue maad redi.

5 And anoon the king seide, Clepe ye Aaman soone, that he obeie to the wille of Hester. Therfor the kyng and Aaman camen to the feeste, which the queen hadde maad redi to hem.

6 And the king seide to hir, aftir that he hadde drunk wiyn plenteuousli, What axist thou, that it be youun to thee, and for what thing axist thou? Yhe, thouy thou axist the half part of my rewme, thou schalt gete.

7 To whom Hester answeride, My axyng and preieris ben these.

8 If Y haue founde grace in the siyt of the kyng, and if it plesith the kyng, that he yyue to me that, that Y axe, and that he fille myn axyng, the kyng and Aaman come to the feeste, which Y haue maad redi to hem; and to morewe Y schal opene my wille to the kyng.

9 Therfor Aaman yede out glad and swift `in that dai. And whanne he hadde seyn Mardochee sittynge bifor the yatis of the paleys, and not oneli to haue not rise to hym, but sotheli nether moued fro the place of his sittyng, he was ful wrooth;

10 and `whanne the ire was dissymelid, he turnede ayen in to his hows, and he clepide togidire `to him silf frendis, and Zares, his wijf;

11 and he declaride to hem the greetnesse of his richessis, and the cumpeny of children, and with hou greet glorie the kyng hadde enhaunsid hym aboue alle hise princis and seruauntis.

12 And he seide after these thinges, Also the queen Hester clepide noon other man with the kyng to the feeste, outakun me, anentis `which queen Y schal ete also to morewe with the kyng.

13 And whanne Y haue alle these thingis, Y gesse that Y haue no thing, as long as Y se Mardochee, Jew, sittynge bifor the `kyngis yatis.

14 And Zares, his wijf, and othere frendis answeriden to hym, Comaunde thou an hiy beem to be maad redi, hauynge fifti cubitis of heiythe; and seie thou eerly to the kyng, that Mardochee be hangid theronne; and so thou schalt go glad with the kyng to the feeste.

15 And the counsel plesyde him, and he comaundide an hiy cros to be maad redi.

Chapter 6


1 The kyng ledde that nyyt with out sleep, and he comaundide the stories and the bookis of yeeris `of formere tymes to be brouyt to hym. And whanne tho weren red in his presense,

2 me cam to the place, where it was writun, hou Mardochee hadde teld the tresouns of Gabathan and Thares, oneste seruauntis, couetynge to strangle kyng Assuerus.

3 And whanne the kyng hadde herd this, he seide, What onour and meede gat Mardochee for this feithfulnesse? And hise seruauntis and mynystris seiden to hym, Outirli he took no meede.

4 And anoon the kyng seide, Who is in the halle? Sotheli Aaman hadde entrid in to the ynnere halle of the kyngis hows, to make suggestioun to the kyng, that he schulde comaunde Mardochee to be hangid on the iebat, which was maad redi to him.

5 And the children answeriden, Aaman stondith in the halle.

6 And the kyng seide, Entre he. And whanne he was comun yn, the kyng seide to hym, What owith to be don to the man, whom the kyng desirith onoure? Aaman thouyte in his herte, and gesside, that the kyng wolde onoure noon othere man no but hym silf;

7 and he answeride, The man, whom the kyng couetith to onoure,

8 owith to be clothid with the kyngis clothis, and to be set on the hors which is of the kyngis sadel, and to take the kyngis diademe on his heed;

9 and the firste of the princes and stronge men of the kyng holde his hors, and go bi the stretis of the citee, and crie, and seie, Thus he schal be onourid, whom euer the kyng wole onoure.

10 Therfor the kyng seide to hym, Haste thou, and whanne `a stoole and hors is takun, do thou, as thou hast spoke, to Mardochee the Jew, that sittith bifor the yatis of the paleis; be thou war, that thou leeue not out ony thing of these, whiche thou hast spoke.

11 Therfor Aaman took `a stoole and hors, and yede, and criede bifor Mardochee clothid in the strete of the citee, and set on `the hors, He is worthi this onour, whom euer the kyng wole onoure.

12 And Mardochee turnede ayen to the yate of the paleis, and Aaman hastide to go in to his hows, morenynge, and with the heed hilid.

13 And he teld to Zares, his wijf, and to frendis alle thingis that hadden bifelde to hym. To whom the wise men, whiche he hadde in counsel, and his wijf, answeriden, If Mardochee, bifor whom thou hast bigunne to falle, is of the seed of Jewis, thou schalt not mowe ayenstonde hym, but thou schalt falle in his siyt.

14 Yit while thei spaken, the oneste seruauntis and chast of the kyng camen, and compelliden hym to go soone to the feeste, which the queen hadde maad redi.

Chapter 7


1 Therfor the kyng and Aaman entriden to the feeste, to drynke with the queen.

2 And the kyng seide to hir, yhe, in the secounde dai, aftir that he was hoot of the wiyn, Hester, what is thin axyng, that it be youun to thee, and what wolt thou be doon? Yhe, thouy thou axist the half part of my rewme, thou schalt gete.

3 To whom sche answeride, A! king, if Y haue founde grace in thin iyen, and if it plesith thee, yyue thou my lijf to me, for which Y preie, and my puple, for which Y biseche.

4 For Y and my puple ben youun, that we be defoulid, and stranglid, and that we perische; `and Y wolde, that we weren seeld in to seruauntis and seruauntessis, `and the yuel `were suffrable, and Y `were stille weilynge; but now oure enemy is, whos cruelte turneth `in to the kyng.

5 And kyng Assuerus answeride, and seide, Who is this, and of what power, that he be hardi to do these thingis?

6 And Hester seide, Oure worste aduersarie and enemy is this Aaman. Which thing he herde, and was astonyde anoon, and `suffride not to bere the semelaunt of the kyng and of the queen.

7 Forsothe the kyng roos wrooth, and fro the place of the feeste he entride in to a gardyn biset with trees. And Aaman roos for to preie Hester, the queen, for his lijf; for he vndurstood yuel maad redi of the kyng to hym.

8 And whanne the kyng turnede ayen fro the gardyn `biset with wode, and hadde entrid in to the place of feeste he foond that Aaman felde doun on the bed, wherynne Hester lai. And the king seide, `Also he wole oppresse the queen, while Y am present, in myn hows. The word was not yit goon out of the kyngis mouth, and anoon thei hiliden his face.

9 And Arbona seide, oon of the onest seruauntis and chast, that stoden in the seruyce of the kyng, Lo! the tre hauynge fifti cubitis of heiythe stondith in the hows of Aaman, which tre he hadde maad redi to Mardochee, that spak for the kyng. To whom the kyng seide, Hange ye Aaman in that tre.

10 Therfor Aaman was hangid in the iebat, which he hadde maad redi to Mardochee, and the ire of the kyng restide.

Chapter 8


1 In that dai kyng Assuerus yaf to Hester, the queen, the hows of Aaman, aduersarie of Jewis. And Mardochee entride bifor the face of the kyng; for Hester knoulechide to hym, that he was `hir fadris brother.

2 Therfor the kyng took the ryng, which he hadde comaundid to be resseyued fro Aaman, and yaf to Mardochee. Forsothe Hester ordeynede Mardochee ouer hir hows.

3 And Hester was not appaied with these thingis, and felde doun to the feet of the kyng, and wepte, and spak to hym, and preiede, that he schulde comaunde the malice of Aaman of Agag, and hise worste castis, whiche he hadde thouyte out ayens Jewis, `to be maad voide.

4 And the kyng bi custom helde forth the goldun yerde of the kyng with his hond, bi which the signe of merci was schewid. `Therfor sche roos vp,

5 and stood bifor hym, and seide, If it plesith the kyng, and if Y haue founde grace bifor hise iyen, and if my preier is not seyn `to be contrarie to hym, Y biseche, that the elde lettris of Aaman, traitour and enemy of Jewis, by whiche he hadde comaundid hem to perische in alle the prouynces of the kyng, be amendid bi newe pistlis;

6 for hou schal Y mowe suffre the deth, and the sleyng of my puple?

7 And kyng Assuerus answeride to Hester, the queen, and to Mardochee, Jew, Y grauntide the hows of Aaman to Hester, the queen, and Y comaundide hym to be hangid `on the cros, for he was hardi to sette hond ayens the Jewis.

8 Therfor write ye to Jewis, as it plesith to you, `bi the name of the kyng, and aseele ye the lettris with my ring. For this was the custom, that no man durste ayenseie the pistlis, that weren sente in the kyngis name, and weren aseelid with his ryng.

9 And whanne the dyteris and `writeris of the kyng weren clepid; `sotheli it was the tyme of the thridde monethe, which is clepid Siban, in the thre and twentithe dai of that monethe; pistlis weren writun, as Mardochee wolde, to Jewis, and to princes, and to procuratouris, and to iugis, that weren souereyns of an hundrid and seuene and twenti prouynces, fro Iynde `til to Ethiope, to prouynce and to prouynce, to puple and to puple, bi her langagis and lettris, and to Jewis, that thei myyten rede and here.

10 And tho pistlis, that weren sent `bi the kyngis name, weren aseelid with his ryng, and sent bi messangeris, whiche runnen aboute bi alle prouynces, and camen with newe messagis bifor the elde lettris.

11 To whiche the kyng comaundide, that thei schulden clepe togidere the Jewis bi alle citees, `and comaunde to be gaderid togidere, that thei schulden stonde for her lyues; and schulden sle, and do awei alle her enemyes, with her wyues and children, and alle howsis.

12 And o dai of veniaunce, that is, in the thrittenthe dai of the tweluethe monethe Adar, was ordeined bi alle prouynces.

13 And the schort sentence of the pistle was this, that it were maad knowun in alle londis and puplis, that weren suget to the empire of kyng Assuerus, that the Jewis ben redi to take veniaunce of her enemyes.

14 And the messangeris yeden out, bifor berynge swift messages; and the comaundement of the kyng hangide in Susa.

15 Sotheli Mardochee yede out of the paleis and of the kyngis siyt, and schynede in the kyngis clothis, that is, of iacynct and of colour of the eir, and he bar a goldun coroun in his heed, and was clothid with a mentil of selk and of purpur; and al the citee fulli ioiede, and was glad.

16 Forsothe a newe liyt semede to rise to the Jewis,

17 ioie, onour, and daunsyng, at alle puplis, citees, and alle prouynces, whidur euere the comaundementis of the kyng camen, a wondurful ioie, metis, and feestis, and an hooli dai, in so myche, that many of an other folk and sect weren ioyned to the religioun and cerymonyes of hem; for the greet drede of the name of Jewis `hadde asaylid alle hem.

Chapter 9


1 Therfor in the thrittenthe dai of the tweluethe monethe, which we seiden now bifore to be clepid Adar, whanne sleyng was maad redi to alle Jewis, and her enemyes settiden tresoun to blood, ayenward Jewes bigunnen to be the hiyere, and to venge hem of aduersaries.

2 And thei weren gaderid togidere bi alle citees, castels, and places, to stretche forth hond ayens her enemyes and pursueris; and no man was hardi to ayenstonde, for the drede of her gretnesse hadde persid alle puplis.

3 For whi bothe the iugis, duykis, and procuratouris of prouynces, and ech dignyte, that weren souereyns of alle places and werkis, enhaunsiden Jewis, for the drede of Mardochee,

4 whom thei knewen to be prince of the paleis, and to mow do ful myche; and the fame of his name encreeside ech dai, and flei bi the mouthis of alle men.

5 Therfor the Jewis smytiden her enemyes with greet veniaunce, and killiden hem, and yeldiden to tho enemyes that, that thei hadden maad redi to do to `the Jewis,

6 in so myche, that also in Susa thei killiden fyue hundrid men, with out the ten sones of Aaman of Agag, the enemye of Jewis, of whiche these ben the names;

7 Phasandatha, Delphon, and Esphata,

8 and Phorata, and Adalia, and Aridatha,

9 and Ephermesta, and Arisai, and Aridai, and Vaizatha.

10 And whanne the Jewis hadden slayn hem, thei nolden take preies of the catels of hem.

11 And anoon the noumbre of hem, that weren slayn in Susa, was teld to the kyng.

12 Which seide to the queen, Jewis han slayn fyue hundrid men in the citee of Susa, and othere ten sones of Aaman; hou grete sleyng gessist thou, that thei haunten in alle prouynces? what axist thou more? and what wolt thou, that Y comaunde to be doon?

13 To whom sche answeride, If it plesith the kyng, power be youun to the Jewis, that as thei han do to dai in Susa, so do thei also to morewe, and that the ten sones of Aaman be hangid vp in iebatis.

14 And the kyng comaundide, that it schulde be doon so; and anoon the comaundement hangide in Susa, and the ten sones of Aaman weren hangid.

15 Therfor whanne the Jewis weren gaderid togidere, in the fourtenthe dai of the monethe Adar, thre hundrid men weren slayn in Susa, and the Jewis token not awei the catel of tho men.

16 But also bi alle the prouynces, that weren suget to the lordschip of the kyng, Jewis stoden for her lyues, whanne her enemyes and pursueris weren slayn, in so myche, that fyue and seuenti thousynde of slayn men `weren fillid, and no man touchide ony thing of the catelis of hem.

17 Forsothe the thrittenthe dai of the monethe Adar was o dai of sleyng at alle Jewis, and in the fourtenthe dai thei ceessiden to sle; which thei ordeyneden to be solempne, that therynne in ech tyme aftirward thei schulden yyue tent to metis, to ioye, and to feestis.

18 And thei, that hauntiden sleyng in the citee of Susa, `lyueden in sleyng in the thrittenthe and fourtenthe dai of the same monethe. But in the fiftenthe dai thei ceessiden to sle; and therfor thei ordeyneden the same dai solempne of feestis and of gladnesse.

19 Forsothe these Jewis, that dwelliden in borow townes not wallid and vilagis, demeden the fourtenthe dai of the monethe Adar of feestis, and of ioie, so that thei be ioiful therynne, and sende ech to other partis of feestis and of metis.

20 Therfor Mardochee wroot alle these thingis, and sente these thingis comprehendid bi lettris to the Jewis, that dwelliden in alle prouynces of the kyng, as wel to Jewis set nyy as fer,

21 that thei schulden resseyue the fourtenthe and the fiftenthe dai of the monethe Adar `for feestis, and euer whanne the yeer turneth ayen, `thei schulden halowe with solempne onour;

22 for in tho daies the Jewis vengiden hem silf of her enemyes, and morenyng and sorewe weren turned in to gladnesse and ioie; and these daies schulden be daies of feestis, and of gladnesse, and `that thei schulden sende ech to other partis of metis, and `yyue litle yiftis to pore men.

23 Forsothe the Jewis resseyueden in to solempne custom alle thingis, whiche thei bigunnen to do in that tyme, and whiche thingis Mardochee hadde comaundid bi lettris to be doon.

24 Sotheli Aaman, the sone of Amadathi, of the kynrede of Agag, the enemy and aduersarie of Jewis, thouyte yuel ayens hem, to sle hem and to do awei, and he sente phur, which is interpretid in oure langage `in to lot.

25 And afterward Hester entride to the kyng, and bisouyte, that `hise enforsyngis schulden be maad voide bi the lettris of the kyng, and that the yuel, which he hadde thouyt ayenus the Jewis, schulde turne ayen in to his heed. `Forsothe thei hangiden on the cros `bothe hym and hise sones.

26 And fro that tyme these daies weren clepid `Phurym, that is, of lottis, for `phur, that is, lot, was sent in to a vessel; and the Jewis resseyueden on hem silf, and on her seed, and on alle men that wolden be couplid to her religioun, alle thingis that weren doon, and ben conteyned in the volym of the pistle, `that is, of this book,

27 and whiche thingis thei suffriden, and whiche thingis weren chaungid aftirward, that it be not leueful to ony man to passe with out solempnyte these `daies, which the scripture witnessith, and certeyn tymes axen, while the yeeris comen contynuely oon aftir an other.

28 These ben the daies, whiche neuer ony foryetyng schal do awei, and bi alle generaciouns alle prouynces, that ben in al the world, schulen halewe; nether `ony citee is, in which the daies of Phurym, that is, of lottis, schulen not be kept of Jewis, and of the generacioun of hem, which is bounden to these cerymonyes.

29 And Hester, the queen, the douyter of Abiahel, and Mardochee, the Jew, writiden also the secounde pistle, that this solempne dai schulde be halewid aftirward with al bisynesse.

30 And thei senten to tho Jewis, that dwelliden in an hundrid and seuene and twenti prouynces of kyng Assuerus, that thei schulden haue pees, and resseyue the trewthe,

31 and kepe the daies of lottis, and halewe with ioie in her tyme, as Mardochee and Hester hadden ordeyned; and thei resseiueden the fastyngis, and the cries, and the daies of lottis, to be kept of hem silf and of her seed,

32 and `that thei schulden resseyue among hooli bookis alle thingis that ben conteyned in the storie of this book, which is clepid Hester.

Chapter 10


1 Forsothe kyng Assuerus made tributarye ech lond, and alle the ilis of the see;

2 whos strengthe and empire and dignyte and hiynesse, by which he enhaunside Mardochee, ben writun in the bookis of Medeis and of Persis;

3 and how Mardochee of the kyn of Jewis was the secounde fro king Assuerus, and was greet anentis Jewis, and acceptable to the puple of hise britheren, and he souyte goodis to his puple, and spak tho thingis, that perteyneden to the pees of his seed.

4 And Mardochee seide, These thingis ben doon of God.

5 Y haue mynde on the dreem, which `Y siy, signifiynge these same thingis, and no thing of tho was voide.

6 A litil welle, that wexide in to a flood, and was turned in to the liyt and sunne, and turnede ayen in to ful many watris, is Hester, whom the kyng took in to wijf, and wolde that sche were his queen.

7 Sotheli twei dragouns, Y am and Aaman;

8 folkis that camen togidere, ben these, that enforsiden to do a wei the name of Jewis.

9 Sotheli my folk Israel it is, that criede to the Lord; and the Lord made saaf his puple, and delyueride vs fro alle yuels, and dide grete signes and wondris among hethene men;

10 and he comaundide twei lottis to be, oon of Goddis puple, and the tother of alle hethene men.

11 And euer either lot cam in to `determynd dai thanne fro that tyme bifor God and alle folkis.

12 And the Lord hadde mynde on his puple, and hadde merci on his eritage.

13 And these daies schulen be kept in the monethe Adar, in the fourtenthe `and the fiftenthe dai of the same monethe, with al bisynesse and ioie of the puple gaderid in to o cumpenye, in to alle generaciouns of the puple of Israel aftirward.

Chapter 11


1 In the fourthe yeer, whanne Ptolome and Cleopatra regneden, Dositheus, that seide hym silf to be a prest and of the kyn of Leuy, and Ptolome, his sone, brouyten this pistle of lottis in to Jerusalem, which pistle thei seiden, that Lysimachus, the sone of Ptolome, translatide.

2 In the secounde yeer, whanne Artaxerses the moost regnyde, Mardochee, the sone of Jairy, sone of Semei, sone of Cys, of the lynage of Beniamyn, siy a dreem in the firste dai of the monethe Nysan;

3 and Mardochee was a man Jew, that dwellide in the citee of Susa, a grete man, and amonge the firste men of the kyngis halle.

4 Sotheli he was of that noumbre of prisoneris, which Nabugodonosor, the kyng of Babiloyn, hadde translatid fro Jerusalem with Jeconye, kyng of Judee.

5 And this was `his dreem. Voices and noises and thundris and erthemouyngis and troblyng apperiden on the erthe.

6 And lo! twei grete dragouns, and maad redi ayens hem silf in to batel;

7 at the cry `of which alle naciouns weren stirid togidere, to fiyte ayens the folc of iust men.

8 And that was a day of derknessis, and of perel, of tribulacioun, and of angwisch, and grete drede was on erthe.

9 And the folc of iust men dredynge `her yuels was disturblid, and maad redi to deeth.

10 And thei crieden to God; and whanne thei crieden, a litil welle encreesside in to a ful greet flood, and turnede ayen in to ful many watris.

11 The liyt and the sunne roos; and meke men weren enhaunsid, and deuouriden noble men.

12 And whanne Mardochee hadde seyn this thing, and hadde rise fro the bed, he thouyte, what God wolde do, and he hadde fast set in soule, and couetide to wite, what the dreem signyfiede.

Chapter 12


1 Forsothe Mardochee dwellide that tyme in the halle of the kyng, with Bagatha and Thara, oneste seruauntis of the kyng, that weren porteris of the paleis.

2 And whanne he hadde vndurstonde the thouytis of hem, and hadde bifor seyn ful diligentli the bisynessis, he lurnyde that thei enforsiden to set hond on kyng Artaxerses, and he telde of that thing to the kyng.

3 And whanne enqueryng was had of euer eithir, the kyng comaundide hem, `that knoulechiden, to be led to deth.

4 Forsothe the kyng wroot in bookis that, that was doon, but also Mardochee bitook the mynde of the thing to lettris.

5 And the kyng comaundide hym, that he schulde dwelle in the halle of the paleis, and yaf to hym yiftis for the tellynge.

6 Forsothe Aaman, the sone of Amadathi, a bugei, was moost glorius bifor the kyng, and he wolde anoye Mardochee, and his puple, for the `tweyne oneste seruauntis of the king `that weren slayn.

Chapter 13


1 The gretteste kyng Artaxerses, fro Iynde `til to Ethiope, seith helthe to the princes and duykys of an hundrid and seuene and twenti prouynces, whiche princes and duykis ben suget to his empire.

2 Whanne Y was lord of ful many folkis, and Y hadde maad suget al the world to my lordschip, Y wolde not mysuse the greetnesse of power, but gouerne sugetis bi merci and softnesse, that thei, ledynge lijf in silence with outen ony drede, schulden vse pees couetid of alle deedli men.

3 Sotheli whanne Y axide of my counselours, hou this myyte be fillid, oon, Aaman bi name, that passide othere men in wisdom and `feithfulnesse, and was the secounde aftir the kyng,

4 schewide to me, that a puple was scaterid in al the roundnesse of londis, which puple vside newe lawis, and dide ayens the custom of alle folkis, and dispiside the comaundementis of kyngis, and defoulide bi his discencioun the acordyng of alle naciouns.

5 And whanne we hadden lerned this thing, and sien, that o folk rebel ayens al the kynde of men vside weiward lawis, and was contrarie to oure comaundementis, and disturblide the pees and acording of prouynces suget to vs,

6 `we comaundiden, that whiche euere Aaman `schewide, which is souereyn of alle prouynces, and is the secounde fro the kyng, and whom we onouren in `the place of fadir, thei with her wiues and children be doon awei of her enemyes, and noon haue merci on hem, in the fourtenthe dai of the twelfithe monethe Adar, of present yeer;

7 that cursid men go doun to hellis in o dai, and yelde pees to oure empire, which thei hadden troblid.

8 Forsothe Mardochee bisouyte the Lord, and was myndeful of alle `hise werkys, and seide,

9 Lord God, kyng almyyti, alle thingis ben set in thi lordschip, `ethir power, and `noon is, that may ayenstonde thi wille; if thou demest for to saue Israel, we schulen be delyuered anoon.

10 Thou madist heuene and erthe, and what euer thing is conteyned in the cumpas of heuene.

11 Thou art Lord of alle thingis, and `noon is that ayenstondith thi maieste.

12 Thou knowist alle thingis, and woost, that not for pride and dispit and ony coueytise of glorie Y dide this thing, that Y worschipide not Aaman moost proud;

13 for Y was redi `wilfuli to kisse, yhe, the steppis of hise feet for the helthe of Israel, but Y dredde,

14 lest Y schulde bere ouere to a man the onour of my God, and lest Y schulde worschipe ony man outakun my God.

15 And now, Lord kyng, God of Abraham, haue thou merci on thi puple, for oure enemyes wolen leese vs, and do awei thin eritage;

16 dispise not thi part, which thou ayenbouytist fro Egipt.

17 Here thou my preier, and be thou merciful to the lot, and the part of thin eritage; and turne thou oure morenyng in to ioie, that we lyuynge herie thi name, Lord; and close thou not the mouthis of men heriynge thee.

18 And al Israel with lijk mynde and bisechyng criede to the Lord, for certeyn deeth neiyede to hem.

Chapter 14


1 Also the queen Hester fledde to the Lord, and dredde the perel, that neiyede.

2 And whanne sche hadde put awei the kyngis clothis, sche took clothis couenable to wepyngis and morenyng; and for dyuerse oynementis sche `fillide the heed with aische and dust, and `made meke hir bodi with fastyngys; and with tobreidyng awei of heeris, sche fillide alle places, in which sche was wont to be glad;

3 and bisouyte the Lord God of Israel, and seide, My Lord, which aloone art oure kyng, helpe me a womman left aloone, and of whom noon othere helpere is outakun thee;

4 my perel is in my hondis.

5 Y haue herd of my fadir, that thou, Lord, tokist awei Israel fro alle folkis, and oure fadris fro alle her grettere men bifore, that thou schuldist welde euerlastynge eritage; and thou hast do to hem, as thou hast spoke.

6 We synneden in thi siyt, and therfor thou hast bitake vs in to the hondis of oure enemyes;

7 for we worschipiden the goddis of hem.

8 Lord, thou art iust; and now it suffisith not to hem, that thei oppressen vs with hardeste seruage, but thei aretten the strengthe of her hondis to the power of idols,

9 and wolen chaunge thi biheestis, and do awei thin eritage, and close the mouthis of men heriynge thee, and quenche the glorie of thi temple and auter,

10 that thei opene the mouthis of hethene men, and preise the strengthe of ydols, and preche a fleischli kyng with outen ende.

11 Lord, yyue thou not thi kyngis yerde to hem, that ben noyt, lest thei leiyen at oure fallyng; but turne thou the councel of hem on hem, and distrie thou hym, that bigan to be cruel ayens vs.

12 Lord, haue thou mynde, and schewe thee to vs in the tyme of tribulacioun; and, Lord, kyng of goddis and of al power, yyue thou trist to me;

13 yyue thou a word wel dressid in my mouth in the siyt of the lioun, and turne ouer his herte in to the hatrede of oure enemy, that bothe he perische, and othere men that consenten to hym.

14 But delyuere vs in thin hond, and helpe me, hauynge noon othere help no but thee, Lord, that hast the kunnyng of alle thingis;

15 and knowist that Y hate the glorie of wickid men, and that Y wlate the bed of vncircumcidid men, and of ech alien.

16 Thou knowist my freelte and nede, that Y holde abhomynable the signe of my pride and glorie, which is on myn heed in the daies of my schewyng, and that Y wlate it `as the cloth of a womman hauynge vncleene blood, and Y bere not in the daies of my stillenesse,

17 and that Y eet not in the boord of Aaman, nether the feeste of the kyng pleside me, and Y drank not the wiyn of moiste sacrifices,

18 and that thin handmayde `was neuere glad, sithen Y was translatid hidur til in to present dai, no but in thee, Lord God of Abraham.

19 `God stronge aboue alle, here thou the vois of hem, that han noon othere hope, and delyuere thou vs fro the hond of wickid men, and delyuere thou me fro my drede.

Chapter 15


1 And `he sente to hir, no doute that ne Mardochee sente to Hester, that sche schulde entre to the kyng, and preie for hir puple, and for hir cuntrei.

2 He seide, Be thou myndeful of the daies of thi mekenesse, hou thou were nurschid in myn hond; for Aaman, ordeyned the secounde fro the kyng, spak ayens vs in to deth;

3 and thou inwardli clepe the Lord, and speke to the kyng for vs, and delyuere vs fro deeth.

4 Forsothe in the thridde dai sche `puttide of the clothis of hir ournyng, and was cumpassid with hir glorie.

5 And whanne sche `schinede in the kyngis clothing, and hadde inwardli clepid the Gouernour of alle thingis and the sauyour God, sche took twei seruauntis,

6 and sotheli sche leenyde on oon, as not susteynynge to bere hir body, for delices and ful greet tendirnesse;

7 but the tother `of the seruauntessis suede the ladi, and bar vp the clothis fletinge doun `in to the erthe.

8 `Sotheli sche was bisched with `colour of roosis `in the cheer, and with pleasaunt and schynynge iyen sche hilide the soreuful soule, and drawun togidere with ful myche drede.

9 Therfor sche entride thorouy alle the doris bi ordre, and stood ayens the kyng, where he sat on the seete of his rewme, and was clothid in the kyngis clothis, and schynyde in gold and preciouse stoonys, and was dredeful in siyt.

10 And whanne he hadde reisid the face, and hadde schewid the woodnesse of herte with brennynge iyen, the queen felde doun; and whanne the colour was chaungid in to palenesse, sche restide the heed slidun on the handmaide.

11 And God turnede the spirit of the kyng in to myldenesse, and he hastide, and dredde, `and skippyde out of the seete; and he `susteynede hir with hise armes, til sche cam ayen to hir self; and he spak faire bi these wordis,

12 Hester, what hast thou? Y am thi brother; nyle thou drede, thou schalt not die;

13 for this lawe is not maad for thee, but for alle men.

14 Therfor neiye thou, and touche the ceptre, `that is, the kyngis yerde.

15 And whanne sche was stille, he took the goldun yerde, and `puttide on hir necke; and he kisside hir, and seide, Why spekist thou not to me?

16 And sche answeride, Lord, Y siy thee as an aungel of God, and myn herte was troblid for the drede of thi glorye;

17 for, lord, thou art ful wondurful, and thi face is ful of graces.

18 And whanne sche spak, eft sche felde doun, and was almest deed.

19 Sotheli the kyng was troblid, and alle hise mynystris coumfortiden hir.

Chapter 16


1 The grete kyng Artaxerses, fro Yinde `til to Ethiopie, seith helthe to the duykis and pryncis of an hundrid and seuene and twenti prouynces, that obeien to oure comaundement.

2 Many men mysusen in to pride the goodnesse and onour of princes, which is youun to hem;

3 and not oneli thei enforsen to oppresse sugetis to kyngis, but thei beren not glorie youun to hem, and maken redy tresouns ayens hem, that yauen the glorie.

4 And thei ben not apaied to do not thankyngis for benefices, and to defoule in hem silf the lawis of curtesie; but also thei demen, that thei moun fle the sentence of God seynge alle thingis.

5 And thei breken out in to so mych woodnesse, that thei enforsen with the roopis of leesyngis to distrie hem, that kepen diligentli offices bitakun to hem, and doen so alle thingis, that thei ben worthi the preisyng of alle men;

6 while bi sutil fraude `false men disseyuen the symple eeris of kyngis, `and gessynge othere men bi her owne kynde.

7 Which thing is preuyd bothe bi elde stories, and bi these thingis that ben doen ech dai; hou the studies of kyngis ben maad schrewid bi yuele suggestiouns of summen.

8 Wherfor it is to purueye for the pees of alle prouynces.

9 And thouy we comaunden dyuerse thingis, ye owen not to gesse, that it cometh of the vnstablenesse of oure soule; but that we yyuen sentence for the maner and nede of tymes, as the profit of the comyn thing axith.

10 And that ye vndurstonde opynliere that, that we seyen; Aaman, the sone of Amadathi, a man of Macedoyne bi soule and folk, and an alien fro the blood of Persis, and defoulynge oure pitee with his cruelte, was a pilgrym, ethir a straunger, and was resseyued of vs;

11 and he feelide in hym silf so grete curtesie of vs, that he was clepid oure fadir, and was worschipid of alle men the secounde aftir the kyng;

12 which Aaman was reisid in to so greet bolnyng of pride, that he enforside to pryue us of the rewme and spirit.

13 For bi summe newe and vnherd castis he axide in to deeth Mardochee, bi whos feith and benefices we liuen, and the felowe of oure rewme Hester, with al hir folk;

14 and he thouyte these thingis, that whanne thei weren slayn, he schulde sette tresoun to `oure aloonenesse, and that he schulde translate the rewme of Persis in to Macedoynes.

15 Forsothe we founden not the Jewis in ony gilt outirli, that weren ordeyned to deth by the worste of deedli men; but ayenward that thei vsen iust lawis,

16 and ben the sones of the hiyeste and moste God, and `euere lyuynge, bi whos benefice the rewme was youun bothe to oure fadris and to vs, and is kept `til to dai.

17 Wherfor wyte ye, that tho lettris ben voide, whiche thilke Aaman sente vndur oure name.

18 For which greet trespas bothe he that ymagynede, and al his kynrede, hangith in iebatis bifor the yatis of this citee, `that is, Susa; for not we, but God yeldide to hym that, that he desseruyde.

19 Forsothe this comaundement, which we senden now, be set forth in alle citees, that it be leueful to Jewis to vse her lawis.

20 `Whyche Jewis ye owen helpe, that thei moun sle hem, that maden hem silf redi to the deeth of Jewis, in the thrittenthe dai of the tweluethe monethe, which is clepyd Adar;

21 for Almyyti God turneth this dai of weilyng and morenyng in to ioye to hem.

22 Wherfor and ye han this dai among othere feeste daies, and halowe it with al gladnesse; that it be knowun aftirward,

23 that alle men, that obeien feithfuli to Persis, resseyuen worthi meed for feith; sotheli that thei, that setten tresoun to the rewme of hem, perischen for the felony.

24 Forsothe ech prouynce and citee, that wole not be parcenere of this solempnytee, perische bi swerd and fier; and be it `doon awey so, that not oneli it be with out weie to men but also to beestis with outen ende, for ensaumple of dispisyng and vnobedience.