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Judith , CHAPTER 1

1

It was the twelfth year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar, who ruled over the Assyrians in the great city of Nineveh. At that time Arphaxad was ruling over the Medes in Ecbatana.

2

Around Ecbatana he built a wall of hewn stones, three cubits thick and six cubits long. He made the walls seventy cubits high and fifty cubits wide.

3

At its gates he raised towers one hundred cubits high with foundations sixty cubits wide.

4

He made its gates seventy cubits high and forty cubits wide to allow passage of his mighty forces, with his infantry in formation.

5

At that time King Nebuchadnezzar waged war against King Arphaxad in the vast plain that borders Ragau.

6

Rallying to him were all who lived in the hill country, all who lived along the Euphrates, the Tigris, and the Hydaspes, as well as Arioch, king of the Elamites, in the plains. Thus many nations joined the ranks of the Chelodites.

7

Then Nebuchadnezzar, king of the Assyrians, contacted all the inhabitants of Persia and all who lived in the west, the inhabitants of Cilicia and Damascus, Lebanon and Antilebanon, and all who lived along the seacoast,

8

the peoples of Carmel, Gilead, Upper Galilee, and the vast plain of Esdraelon,

9

and all in Samaria and its cities, and west of the Jordan as far as Jerusalem, Bethany, Chelous, Kadesh, and the river of Egypt; Tahpanhes, Raamses, all the land of Goshen,

10

Tanis, Memphis and beyond, and all the inhabitants of Egypt as far as the borders of Ethiopia.

11

But all the inhabitants of the whole land made light of the summons of Nebuchadnezzar, king of the Assyrians, and would not join him in the war. They were not afraid of him, since he was only a single opponent. So they sent back his envoys empty-handed and disgraced.

12

Then Nebuchadnezzar fell into a violent rage against all the land, and swore by his throne and his kingdom that he would take revenge on all the territories of Cilicia, Damascus, and Syria, and would destroy with his sword all the inhabitants of Moab, Ammon, the whole of Judea, and all those living in Egypt as far as the coasts of the two seas.

13

In the seventeenth year he mustered his forces against King Arphaxad and was victorious in his campaign. He routed the whole force of Arphaxad, his entire cavalry, and all his chariots,

14

and took possession of his cities. He pressed on to Ecbatana, took its towers, sacked its marketplaces, and turned its glory into shame.

15

He captured Arphaxad in the mountains of Ragau, ran him through with spears, and utterly destroyed him once and for all.

16

Then he returned to Nineveh with all his consolidated forces, a very great multitude of warriors; and there he and his forces relaxed and feasted for one hundred and twenty days.