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Antiquities (Greek Text) Book 6.

From the death of Eli to the death of king Saul

1. Philistines ruined, for stealing the Ark. Its return

2. Under Samuel, the Hebrews defeat the Philistines

3. Samuel's sons go wrong. The people demand a king

4. Samuel appoints Saul as king, by God's command

5. Saul defeats the Ammanites and takes their spoils

6. Saul's successful attack on the Philistines

7. Saul is told to wipe out the Amalekites

8. Samuel anoints David as king to replace Saul

9. David kills Philistine Goliath in combat

10. Saul gives David his daughter in marriage

11. With Jonathan's help, David escapes from Saul

12. David flees to Abimelech, etc. Saul's revenge

13. David refuses to kill king Saul. Death of Samuel

14. Saul and witch of Dor. Samuel's ghost. Death of Saul

Chapter 1. [001-018]
Destruction of the Philistines, for taking away the Ark. The Ark's sacred power and its return to the Hebrews


[1] Λαβόντες δ' οἱ Παλαιστῖνοι τὴν τῶν πολεμίων κιβωτὸν αἰχμάλωτον, ὡς προειρήκαμεν μικρὸν ἔμπροσθεν, εἰς Ἄζωτον ἐκόμισαν πόλιν καὶ παρὰ τὸν αὐτῶν θεὸν ὥσπερ τι λάφυρον, Δαγὼν δ' οὗτος ἐκαλεῖτο, τιθέασι. [2] τῇ δ' ἐπιούσῃ πάντες ὑπὸ τὴν τῆς ἡμέρας ἀρχὴν εἰσιόντες εἰς τὸν ναὸν προσκυνῆσαι τὸν θεὸν ἐπιτυγχάνουσιν αὐτῷ τοῦτο ποιοῦντι τὴν κιβωτὸν: ἔκειτο γὰρ ἐπ' αὐτῆς ἀποπεπτωκὼς τῆς βάσεως, ἐφ' ἧς ἑστὼς διετέλει: καὶ βαστάσαντες πάλιν ἐφιστᾶσιν αὐτὸν ἐπὶ ταύτης δυσφορήσαντες ἐπὶ τῷ γεγενημένῳ. πολλάκις δὲ φοιτῶντες παρὰ τὸν Δαγὼν καὶ καταλαμβάνοντες ὁμοίως ἐπὶ τοῦ προσκυνοῦντος τὴν κιβωτὸν σχήματος κείμενον ἐν ἀπορίᾳ δεινῇ καὶ συγχύσει καθίσταντο. [3] καὶ τελευταῖον ἀπέσκηψεν εἰς τὴν τῶν Ἀζωτίων πόλιν καὶ τὴν χώραν αὐτῶν φθορὰν τὸ θεῖον καὶ νόσον: ἀπέθνησκον γὰρ ὑπὸ δυσεντερίας, πάθους χαλεποῦ καὶ τὴν ἀναίρεσιν ὀξυτάτην ἐπιφέροντος πρὶν ἢ τὴν ψυχὴν αὐτοῖς εὐθανάτως ἀπολυθῆναι τοῦ σώματος, τὰ ἐντὸς ἀναφέροντες [ἐξεμοῦντες] διαβεβρωμένα καὶ παντοίως ὑπὸ τῆς νόσου διεφθαρμένα: τὰ δ' ἐπὶ τῆς χώρας μυῶν πλῆθος ἀνελθὸν ἐπὶ τῆς γῆς κατέβλαψε μήτε φυτῶν μήτε καρπῶν ἀποσχόμενον. [4] ἐν δὴ τούτοις ὄντες τοῖς κακοῖς οἱ Ἀζώτιοι καὶ πρὸς τὰς συμφορὰς ἀντέχειν οὐ δυνάμενοι συνῆκαν ἐκ τῆς κιβωτοῦ ταύτας αὐτοῖς ἀνασχεῖν, καὶ τὴν νίκην καὶ τὴν ταύτης αἰχμαλωσίαν οὐκ ἐπ' ἀγαθῷ γεγενημένην. πέμπουσιν οὖν πρὸς τοὺς Ἀσκαλωνίτας ἀξιοῦντες τὴν κιβωτὸν αὐτοὺς παρὰ σφᾶς δέχεσθαι. [5] τοῖς δὲ οὐκ ἀηδὴς ἡ τῶν Ἀζωτίων δέησις προσέπεσεν, ἀλλ' ἐπινεύουσι μὲν αὐτοῖς τὴν χάριν, λαβόντες δὲ τὴν κιβωτὸν ἐν τοῖς ὁμοίοις δεινοῖς κατέστησαν: συνεξεκόμισε γὰρ αὑτῇ τὰ τῶν Ἀζωτίων ἡ κιβωτὸς πάθη πρὸς τοὺς ἀπ' ἐκείνων αὐτὴν δεχομένους: καὶ πρὸς ἄλλους παρ' αὑτῶν ἀποπέμπουσιν Ἀσκαλωνῖται. [6] μένει δ' οὐδὲ παρ' ἐκείνοις: ὑπὸ γὰρ τῶν αὐτῶν παθῶν ἐλαυνόμενοι πρὸς τὰς ἐχομένας ἀπολύουσι πόλεις. καὶ τοῦτον ἐκπεριέρχεται τὸν τρόπον τὰς πέντε τῶν Παλαιστίνων πόλεις ἡ κιβωτὸς ὥσπερ δασμὸν ἀπαιτοῦσα παρ' ἑκάστης τοῦ πρὸς αὐτὰς ἐλθεῖν ἃ δι' αὐτὴν ἔπασχον.
* * *

001 When the Philistines had captured the ark of the Hebrews, as I said a little while back, they brought it to the city of Azotus and put it beside their own god, who was called Dagon, as one of the spoils. 002 Next morning, when they went into his temple to worship their god, they found him adoring the ark, for he lay there, having fallen down from the plinth on which he had stood. They lifted him and set him up again, disturbed by the episode, and when several times they came to Dagon and found him lying flat, as if adoring the ark, they were in terrible distress and turmoil. 003 At last a dreadful disease came on the city and region of The Azotians, for they died of dysentery or flux, a severe illness that suddenly killed them, for before the soul could properly be released from the body, as in a quiet death, they brought up their entrails and vomited what they had eaten, all rotted by the disease. Many mice also came up from the ground and damaged the produce of their region, sparing neither plants nor fruits. 004 While in this state and hardly able to bear their plight, the Azotians reckoned they were suffering this because of the ark, and that their victory in capturing it had done them no good. So they sent to the people of Askalon and asked them to take the ark from them. 005 This desire of the Azotians was not unwelcome, so they granted them that favour. When they received the ark, they fell into the same state as the Azotians, for the ark brought the same disasters to those who took it from them, so the Askalonites sent it away to others. 006 But it did not remain with those either, for since the same evils pursued them they sent it on to the neighbouring cities. In this way, the ark went around the five cities of the Philistines, as though imposing these evils as a tax to be paid for its arrival among them.


[7] Ἀπειρηκότες δὲ τοῖς κακοῖς οἱ πεπειραμένοι καὶ τοῖς ἀκούουσιν αὐτὰ διδασκαλία γινόμενοι τοῦ μὴ προσδέξασθαι τὴν κιβωτόν ποτε πρὸς αὑτοὺς ἐπὶ τοιούτῳ μισθῷ καὶ τέλει, τὸ λοιπὸν ἐζήτουν μηχανὴν καὶ πόρον ἀπαλλαγῆς αὐτῆς. [8] καὶ συνελθόντες οἱ ἐκ τῶν [πέντε] πόλεων ἄρχοντες, Γίττης καὶ Ἀκάρων καὶ Ἀσκάλωνος ἔτι δὲ Γάζης καὶ Ἀζώτου, ἐσκόπουν τί δεῖ ποιεῖν. καὶ τὸ μὲν πρῶτον ἐδόκει τὴν κιβωτὸν ἀποπέμπειν τοῖς οἰκείοις, ὡς ὑπερεκδικοῦντος αὐτὴν τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ συνεπιδημησάντων αὐτῇ τῶν δεινῶν διὰ τοῦτο καὶ συνεισβαλόντων μετ' ἐκείνης εἰς τὰς πόλεις αὐτῶν: [9] ἦσαν δὲ οἱ λέγοντες τοῦτο μὲν μὴ ποιεῖν μηδ' ἐξαπατᾶσθαι τὴν αἰτίαν τῶν κακῶν εἰς ἐκείνην ἀναφέροντας: οὐ γὰρ ταύτην εἶναι τὴν δύναμιν αὐτῇ καὶ τὴν ἰσχύν: οὐ γὰρ ἄν ποτ' αὐτῆς κηδομένου τοῦ θεοῦ ὑποχείριον ἀνθρώποις γενέσθαι. ἡσυχάζειν δὲ καὶ πρᾴως ἔχειν ἐπὶ τοῖς συμβεβηκόσι παρῄνουν αἰτίαν τούτων οὐκ ἄλλην ἢ μόνην λογιζομένους τὴν φύσιν, ἣ καὶ σώμασι καὶ γῇ καὶ φυτοῖς καὶ πᾶσι τοῖς ἐξ αὐτῆς συνεστῶσι κατὰ χρόνων περιόδους τίκτει τοιαύτας μεταβολάς. [10] νικᾷ δὲ τὰς προειρημένας γνώμας ἀνδρῶν ἔν τε τοῖς ἐπάνω χρόνοις συνέσει καὶ φρονήσει διαφέρειν πεπιστευμένων συμβουλία καὶ τότε μάλιστα δοξάντων: ἁρμοζόντως λέγειν τοῖς παροῦσιν, οἳ μήτ' ἀποπέμπειν ἔφασαν τὴν κιβωτὸν μήτε κατασχεῖν, ἀλλὰ πέντε μὲν ἀνδριάντας ὑπὲρ ἑκάστης πόλεως χρυσοῦς ἀναθεῖναι τῷ θεῷ χαριστήριον, ὅτι προενόησεν αὐτῶν τῆς σωτηρίας καὶ κατέσχεν ἐν τῷ βίῳ διωκομένους ἐξ αὐτοῦ παθήμασιν, οἷς οὐκέτι ἦν ἀντιβλέψαι, τοσούτους δὲ τὸν ἀριθμὸν μύας χρυσοῦς τοῖς κατανεμηθεῖσιν αὐτῶν καὶ διαφθείρασι τὴν χώραν ἐμφερεῖς: [11] ἔπειτα βαλόντας εἰς γλωσσόκομον αὐτοὺς καὶ θέντας ἐπὶ τὴν κιβωτὸν ἅμαξαν αὐτῇ καινὴν κατασκευάσαι, καὶ βόας ὑποζεύξαντας ἀρτιτόκους τὰς μὲν πόρτις ἐγκλεῖσαι καὶ κατασχεῖν, μὴ ταῖς μητράσιν ἐμποδὼν ἑπόμεναι γένωνται, πόθῳ δ' αὐτῶν ὀξυτέραν ποιῶνται τὴν πορείαν: ἐκείνας δ' ἐξελάσαντας τὴν κιβωτὸν φερούσας ἐπὶ τριόδου καταλιπεῖν αὐταῖς ἐπιτρέψαντας ἣν βούλονται τῶν ὁδῶν ἀπελθεῖν: [12] κἂν μὲν τὴν Ἑβραίων ἀπίωσι καὶ τὴν τούτων χώραν ἀναβαίνωσιν, ὑπολαμβάνειν τὴν κιβωτὸν αἰτίαν τῶν κακῶν, ἂν δὲ ἄλλην τράπωνται, μεταδιώξωμεν αὐτὴν, ἔφασαν, μαθόντες ὅτι μηδεμίαν ἰσχὺν τοιαύτην ἔχει.
* * *

007 When those who experienced these woes were exhausted by them and those who heard about them learned not to admit the ark among them, since they paid so dear a tax for it, they finally looked for ways and means to be rid of it. 008 The officers of the five cities, Gitta and Ekron and Askalon, Gaza and Ashdod, met to consider what should be done. At first they thought it best to send the ark back to its own people, admitting that God had taken vengeance on them, and that the woes they had suffered had come to the cities with it and on account of it. 009 But some said they should not do that, or let themselves be tricked into regarding it as the reason for the evils, since it could not have such power and force over them, for if God had so highly regarded it, it would not have fallen into their hands. They urged them to calm down and accept patiently what had happened to them as something caused by nature, which, at certain times produces such changes in bodies, in the earth, in plants and in everything that grows from the earth. 010 But the advice that prevailed over this came from some men, believed to have been distinguished in former times for understanding and prudence and who just then seemed to speak most aptly. These said the right thing was neither to send the ark away nor to keep it, but to dedicate five golden images, one for each city, as thank-offerings to God, for saving them and keeping them alive when their lives were threatened by sicknesses that they could not avoid; and to make five golden mice like those that devoured and destroyed their region. 011 These they should put in a bag and lay them upon the ark, and making a new cart for it, they should yoke milch cows to it, and shut up their calves and keep them from them in case they slowed their mothers by following them and so the cows might return too soon, out of desire for those calves. Then they would drive these cows that carried the ark and leave it at a place where three roadways met, and so leave it to the cows to go along whichever of those paths they pleased. 012 If they went towards the Hebrews and up to their region, they should take it that the ark was the reason for their troubles, but if they turned to another path, "Let us follow it, knowing that it has no such power."


[13] Ἔκριναν δ' αὐτὰ καλῶς εἰρῆσθαι καὶ τοῖς ἔργοις εὐθὺς τὴν γνώμην ἐκύρωσαν. καὶ ποιήσαντες μὲν τὰ προειρημένα προάγουσιν [τὴν ἅμαξαν] ἐπὶ τὴν τρίοδον καὶ καταλιπόντες ἀνεχώρησαν, τῶν δὲ βοῶν τὴν ὀρθὴν ὁδὸν ὥσπερ ἡγουμένου τινὸς αὐταῖς ἀπιουσῶν ἠκολούθουν οἱ τῶν Παλαιστίνων ἄρχοντες, ποῦ ποτε στήσονται καὶ πρὸς τίνας ἥξουσι βουλόμενοι μαθεῖν. [14] κώμη δέ τίς ἐστι τῆς Ἰούδα φυλῆς Βήθης ὄνομα: εἰς ταύτην ἀφικνοῦνται αἱ βόες, καὶ πεδίου μεγάλου καὶ καλοῦ τὴν πορείαν αὐτῶν ἐκδεξαμένου παύονται προσωτέρω χωρεῖν στήσασαι τὴν ἅμαξαν αὐτόθι. θέα δὲ ἦν τοῖς ἐν τῇ κώμῃ καὶ περιχαρεῖς ἐγένοντο: θέρους γὰρ ὥρᾳ πάντες ἐπὶ τὴν συγκομιδὴν τῶν καρπῶν ἐν ταῖς ἀρούραις ὑπάρχοντες ὡς εἶδον τὴν κιβωτὸν ὑφ' ἡδονῆς ἁρπαγέντες καὶ τὸ ἔργον ἐκ τῶν χειρῶν ἀφέντες ἔδραμον εὐθὺς ἐπὶ τὴν ἅμαξαν. [15] καὶ καθελόντες τὴν κιβωτὸν καὶ τὸ ἄγγος, ὃ τοὺς ἀνδριάντας εἶχε καὶ τοὺς μύας, τιθέασιν ἐπί τινος πέτρας, ἥτις ἦν ἐν τῷ πεδίῳ, καὶ θύσαντες λαμπρῶς τῷ θεῷ καὶ κατευωχηθέντες τήν τε ἅμαξαν καὶ τοὺς βόας ὡλοκαύτωσαν. καὶ ταῦτ' ἰδόντες οἱ τῶν Παλαιστίνων ἄρχοντες ἀνέστρεψαν ὀπίσω.
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013 They judged that these had spoken well, and instantly followed their advice. Having made the objects described, they brought the cart to where three roads met and left it and retired, and the cows went the right way as if someone were driving them, with the officers of the Philistines following, to learn where they would stop and to whom they would go. 014 There was a village of the tribe of Judas named Bethshemesh, and though there was a large, fertile plain ahead of them, there the cows went and proceeded no further, but stopped the cart there. The villagers all saw it, and as it was summer and all were in the fields gathering their crops, as soon as they saw the ark, they dropped the work from their hands for sheer joy, and ran to the cart. 015 Then, taking down the ark and the vessel with the images, and the mice, they set them on a rock that stood in the plain, and after a splendid sacrifice to God and a festival, they offered the cart and the cows as a holocaust. When the Philistine officers saw this, they returned home.


[16] Ὀργὴ δὲ καὶ χόλος τοῦ θεοῦ μέτεισιν ἑβδομήκοντα τῶν ἐκ τῆς Βήθης κώμης, οὓς οὐκ ὄντας ἀξίους ἅψασθαι τῆς κιβωτοῦ, ἱερεῖς γὰρ οὐκ ἦσαν, καὶ προσελθόντας αὐτῇ βαλὼν ἀπέκτεινεν. ἔκλαυσαν δὲ ταῦτα παθόντας αὐτοὺς οἱ κωμῆται, καὶ πένθος ἐπ' αὐτοῖς ἤγειραν οἷον εἰκὸς ἐπὶ θεοπέμπτῳ κακῷ καὶ τὸν ἴδιον ἕκαστος ἀπεθρήνει: [17] τοῦ τε μένειν τὴν κιβωτὸν παρ' αὐτοῖς ἀναξίους ἀποφαίνοντες αὑτοὺς καὶ πρὸς τὸ κοινὸν τῶν Ἑβραίων πέμψαντες ἐδήλουν ἀποδεδόσθαι τὴν κιβωτὸν ὑπὸ τῶν Παλαιστίνων. κἀκεῖνοι γνόντες τοῦτο ἀποκομίζουσιν αὐτὴν εἰς Καριαθιαρεὶμ γείτονα πόλιν τῆς Βήθης κώμης. [18] ἔνθα τινὸς Λευίτου τὸ γένος Ἀμιναδάβου δόξαν ἔχοντος ἐπὶ δικαιοσύνῃ καὶ θρησκείᾳ καταβιοῦντος εἰς οἰκίαν τὴν κιβωτὸν ἤγαγον, ὥσπερ εἰς πρέποντα τῷ θεῷ τόπον ἐν ᾧ κατῴκει δίκαιος ἄνθρωπος. ἐθεράπευον δὲ τὴν κιβωτὸν οἱ τούτου παῖδες καὶ τῆς ἐπιμελείας ταύτης ἕως ἐτῶν εἴκοσι προέστησαν: τοσαῦτα γὰρ ἔμεινεν ἐν τῇ Καριαθιαρεὶμ ποιήσασα παρὰ τοῖς Παλαιστίνοις μῆνας τέσσαρας.
* * *

016 But the wrath of God struck dead seventy persons of the village of Bethshemesh, who had approached the ark which, not being priests, they were unworthy to touch. The villagers wept for the victims and lamented them as was normal when so great a misfortune is sent from God, and each one mourned for his own. 017 Then, deeming themselves unworthy to have the ark stay with them, they sent to the general council of the Israelites to say that the ark had been sent back by the Philistines. Hearing it, they brought it away to Kariathjearim, a city in the neighbourhood of Bethes. 018 Living there was Abinadab, a Levite by birth, a man reputed for his just and religious lifestyle, and they brought the ark to his house, as a place fit for God to dwell, since a righteous man lived there. His sons tended to the ark and had charge of it for twenty years, for it stayed in Kariathjearim all that time, after being only four months with the Philistines.

Chapter 2. [019-030]
Under Samuel, the Hebrews defeat the Philistines


[19] Τοῦ δὲ λαοῦ παντὸς ἐκείνῳ τῷ χρόνῳ, καθ' ὃν εἶχεν ἡ τῶν Καριαθιαρειμιτῶν πόλις τὴν κιβωτὸν, ἐπ' εὐχὰς καὶ θυσίας τραπέντος τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ πολλὴν ἐμφανίζοντος τὴν περὶ αὐτὸν θρησκείαν καὶ φιλοτιμίαν, ὁ προφήτης Σαμουῆλος ἰδὼν αὐτῶν τὴν προθυμίαν, ὡς εὔκαιρον πρὸς οὕτως ἔχοντας εἰπεῖν περὶ ἐλευθερίας καὶ τῶν ἀγαθῶν τῶν ἐν αὐτῇ, χρῆται λόγοις οἷς ᾤετο μάλιστα τὴν διάνοιαν αὐτῶν προσάξεσθαι καὶ πείσειν: [20] "ἄνδρες, γὰρ εἶπεν, οἷς ἔτι νῦν βαρεῖς μὲν πολέμιοι Παλαιστῖνοι, θεὸς δ' εὐμενὴς ἄρχεται γίνεσθαι καὶ φίλος, οὐκ ἐπιθυμεῖν ἐλευθερίας δεῖ μόνον, ἀλλὰ καὶ ποιεῖν δι' ὧν ἂν ἔλθοι πρὸς ὑμᾶς, οὐδὲ βούλεσθαι μὲν ἀπηλλάχθαι δεσποτῶν ἐπιμένειν δὲ πράττοντας ἐξ ὧν οὗτοι διαμενοῦσιν: [21] ἀλλὰ γίνεσθε δίκαιοι, καὶ τὴν πονηρίαν ἐκβαλόντες τῶν ψυχῶν καὶ θεραπεύσαντες αὐτὴν ὅλαις ταῖς διανοίαις προστρέπεσθε τὸ θεῖον καὶ τιμῶντες διατελεῖτε: ταῦτα γὰρ ὑμῖν ποιοῦσιν ἥξει τὰ ἀγαθά, δουλείας ἀπαλλαγὴ καὶ νίκη πολεμίων, ἃ λαβεῖν οὔθ' ὅπλοις οὔτε σωμάτων ἀλκαῖς οὔτε πλήθει συμμάχων δυνατόν ἐστιν: οὐ γὰρ τούτοις ὁ θεὸς ὑπισχνεῖται παρέξειν αὐτά, τῷ δ' ἀγαθοὺς εἶναι καὶ δικαίους: ἐγγυητὴς δὲ αὐτοῦ τῶν ὑποσχέσεων ἐγὼ γίνο [22] μαι." ταῦτ' εἰπόντος ἐπευφήμησε τὸ πλῆθος ἡσθὲν τῇ παραινέσει καὶ κατένευσεν αὑτὸ παρέξειν κεχαρισμένον τῷ θεῷ. συνάγει δ' αὐτοὺς ὁ Σαμουῆλος εἴς τινα πόλιν λεγομένην Μασφάτην: κατοπτευόμενον τοῦτο σημαίνει κατὰ τὴν τῶν Ἑβραίων γλῶτταν: ἐντεῦθεν ὑδρευσάμενοί τε σπένδουσι τῷ θεῷ καὶ διανηστεύσαντες ὅλην τὴν ἡμέραν ἐπ' εὐχὰς τρέπονται.
* * *

019 While the citizens of Kariathjearim had the ark, all the people turned to prayers and sacrifices to God and were careful and zealous in his worship. Seeing their fervour the prophet Samuel thought it time to speak of regaining their freedom and its blessings, so he spoke to them in words he felt would best move their hearts: 020 "Men of Israel, whose serious enemies are still the Philistines, now that God has begun to be your gracious friend you should not only yearn for freedom but take the means to gain it, nor simply wish to be rid of your lords and masters while continuing to behave as their subjects. 021 Be righteous, and casting evil from your souls, turn to the divine Majesty with all your hearts and persevere in honouring him. If you do so you will prosper and be freed from your slavery and win victory over your enemies, which you cannot achieve by weapons or physical prowess or the number of your allies. It is not by those means that God has promised to grant these blessings, but by being good and righteous. And I personally go as guarantor for these promises." 022 The people applauded his words, pleased with the exhortation, and devoted themselves to whatever God wished. So Samuel gathered them at a city called Masphate, which, in the Hebrew means a watch-tower, where they drew water and poured it out to God and fasted all day, devoting themselves to prayer.


[23] Οὐ λανθάνουσι δὲ τοὺς Παλαιστίνους ἐκεῖ συναχθέντες, ἀλλὰ μαθόντες οὗτοι τὴν ἄθροισιν αὐτῶν μεγάλῃ στρατιᾷ καὶ δυνάμει κατ' ἐλπίδα τοῦ μὴ προσδοκῶσι μηδὲ παρεσκευασμένοις ἐπιπεσεῖσθαι τοῖς Ἑβραίοις ἐπέρχονται. [24] καταπλήττει δ' αὐτοὺς τοῦτο καὶ εἰς ταραχὴν ἄγει καὶ δέος, καὶ δραμόντες πρὸς Σαμουῆλον, ἀναπεπτωκέναι τὰς ψυχὰς αὐτῶν ὑπὸ φόβου καὶ τῆς προτέρας ἥττης ἔφασκον καὶ διὰ τοῦτ' ἠρεμεῖν, ἵνα μὴ κινήσωμεν τὴν τῶν πολεμίων δύναμιν, σοῦ δ' ἀναγαγόντος ἡμᾶς ἐπ' εὐχὰς καὶ θυσίας καὶ ὅρκους γυμνοῖς καὶ ἀνόπλοις ἐπεστράτευσαν οἱ πολέμιοι: ἐλπὶς οὖν ἡμῖν οὐκ ἄλλη σωτηρίας, ἢ μόνη ἡ παρὰ σοῦ καὶ τοῦ θεοῦ [25] ἱκετευθέντος ὑπὸ σοῦ παρασχεῖν ἡμῖν διαφυγεῖν Παλαιστίνους." ὁ δὲ θαρρεῖν τε προτρέπεται καὶ βοηθήσειν αὐτοῖς τὸν θεὸν ἐπαγγέλλεται καὶ λαβὼν ἄρνα γαλαθηνόν, ὑπὲρ τῶν ὄχλων θύει καὶ παρακαλεῖ τὸν θεὸν ὑπερσχεῖν αὐτῶν τὴν δεξιὰν ἐν τῇ πρὸς Παλαιστίνους μάχῃ καὶ μὴ περιιδεῖν αὐτοὺς δεύτερον δυστυχήσαντας. ἐπήκοος δὲ γίνεται τῶν εὐχῶν ὁ θεὸς, καὶ προσδεξάμενος εὐμενεῖ καὶ συμμάχῳ τῇ διανοίᾳ τὴν θυσίαν ἐπινεύει νίκην αὐτοῖς καὶ κράτος. [26] ἔτι δ' ἐπὶ τοῦ βωμοῦ τὴν θυσίαν ἔχοντος τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ μήπω πᾶσαν διὰ τῆς ἱερᾶς φλογὸς ἀπειληφότος προῆλθεν ἐκ τοῦ στρατοπέδου ἡ τῶν πολεμίων δύναμις καὶ παρατάσσεται εἰς μάχην, ἐπ' ἐλπίδι μὲν νίκης, ὡς ἀπειλημμένων ἐν ἀπορίᾳ τῶν Ἰουδαίων μήτε ὅπλα ἐχόντων μήτε ὡς ἐπὶ μάχῃ ἐκεῖσε ἀπηντηκότων, περιπίπτουσι δὲ οἷς οὐδ' εἰ προύλεγέ τις ῥᾳδίως ἐπείσθησαν. [27] πρῶτον μὲν γὰρ αὐτοὺς ὁ θεὸς κλονεῖ σεισμῷ καὶ τὴν γῆν αὐτοῖς ὑπότρομον καὶ σφαλερὰν κινήσας τίθησιν, ὡς σαλευομένης τε τὰς βάσεις ὑποφέρεσθαι καὶ διισταμένης εἰς ἔνια τῶν χασμάτων καταφέρεσθαι, ἔπειτα βρονταῖς καταψοφήσας καὶ διαπύροις ἀστραπαῖς ὡς καταφλέξων αὐτῶν τὰς ὄψεις περιλάμψας καὶ τῶν χειρῶν ἐκκροτήσας τὰ ὅπλα, γυμνοὺς εἰς φυγὴν ἀπέστρεψεν. [28] ἐπεξέρχεται δὲ Σαμουῆλος μετὰ τῆς πληθύος καὶ πολλοὺς κατασφάξας κατακολουθεῖ μέχρι Κορραίων τόπου τινὸς οὕτω λεγομένου, καὶ καταπήξας ἐκεῖ λίθον ὥσπερ ὅρον τῆς νίκης καὶ τῆς φυγῆς τῶν πολεμίων, ἰσχυρὸν αὐτὸν προσαγορεύει σύμβολον τῆς παρὰ τοῦ θεοῦ γενομένης αὐτοῖς κατὰ τῶν ἐχθρῶν ἰσχύος.
* * *

023 Their gathering was not hidden from the Philistines, who on learning that so large a group had assembled attacked the Hebrews with an army of mighty strength hoping to catch them unawares and unprepared. 024 This terrified them with confusion and fear so they ran to Samuel and said that their spirits were low and fearful from their former defeat. "That is why we were doing nothing, for fear of rousing the might of our enemies, but while you brought us here for prayer and sacrifices and taking oaths, our enemies marched against us, and we are unprotected and unarmed. Our only hope of safety is through you and the God you implore, to help us escape from the Philistines." 025 But he bade them raise their spirits and promised them God's help, and then taking a suckling lamb, he sacrificed it for the crowds and implored God to raise his right hand over them when they fought the Philistines and not to abandon them or let them fall into a second defeat. God graciously heard and accepted his prayers and sacrifice and became their ally, giving them victory and power over their enemies. 026 While the sacrifice was still upon the altar it, not yet wholly consumed it by the sacred fire, the enemy forces marched from their camp and prepared for battle in hope of victory, since the Jews were badly placed without their weapons and not set up in fighting order. But the outcome was such as would hardly be credited even if it had been foretold. 027 For, firstly, God disturbed the enemy with an earthquake, moving the ground under them and making it tremble and shake, so that they staggered and some fell into its gaping chasms. Then he brought down thunder upon them and sent flashes os lightning which almost burned their faces, and shook the weapons from their hands so that they had to flee away unarmed. 028 Samuel and the people rushed upon them, killing many of them, as far as a place called Korraia, and there he set up a stone to mark their victory and the enemy's flight, calling it the Stone of Power, as a sign of the power that God had given them against their enemies.


[29] Οἱ δὲ μετ' ἐκείνην τὴν πληγὴν οὐκέτ' ἐστράτευσαν ἐπὶ τοὺς Ἰσραηλίτας, ἀλλ' ὑπὸ δέους καὶ μνήμης τῶν συμβεβηκότων ἡσύχαζον: ὃ δ' ἦν πάλαι θάρσος τοῖς Παλαιστίνοις ἐπὶ τοὺς Ἑβραίους, τοῦτ' ἐκείνων μετὰ τὴν νίκην ἐγένετο. [30] καὶ Σαμουῆλος στρατεύσας ἐπ' αὐτοὺς ἀναιρεῖ πολλοὺς καὶ τὰ φρονήματ' αὐτῶν εἰς τὸ παντελὲς ταπεινοῖ καὶ τὴν χώραν ἀφαιρεῖται, ἣν τῶν Ἰουδαίων ἀπετέμοντο πρότερον κρατήσαντες τῇ μάχῃ: αὕτη δ' ἦν μέχρι πόλεως Ἀκάρων ἀπὸ τῶν τῆς Γίττης ὅρων ἐκτεταμένη. ἦν δὲ κατ' ἐκεῖνον τὸν καιρὸν φίλια τοῖς Ἰσραηλίταις τὰ ὑπολειπόμενα τῶν Χαναναίων.
* * *

029 After this blow, they invaded the Israelites no more, but stayed quiet from fear and the memory of what had happened. As a result of this victory the courage that the Philistines had formerly shown against them passed over to the Hebrews. 030 Samuel campaigned against them and slew many and entirely humbled their proud hearts and took from them the region they had previously taken from the Jews after defeating them in battle, the region stretching from the borders of Gitta to the city of Akaron. The other Canaanites were at this time in friendship with the Israelites.

Chapter 3. [031-044]
Samuel's sons go wrong, and the people call for a king. God's warning against the monarchy


[31] Ὁ δὲ προφήτης Σαμουῆλος διακοσμήσας τὸν λαὸν καὶ πόλιν αὐτοῖς ἀποδοὺς εἰς ταύτην ἐκέλευσε συνερχομένοις περὶ τῶν πρὸς ἀλλήλους κρίνεσθαι διαφορῶν, αὐτὸς δὲ δι' ἔτους ἐπερχόμενος τὰς πόλεις ἐδίκαζεν αὐτοῖς καὶ πολλὴν ἐβράβευεν εὐνομίαν ἐπὶ χρόνον πολύν.
* * *

031 When the prophet Samuel had set the people in order he assigned them a city in each district where they could come for judgment of any disputes they had. He himself visited the cities twice yearly, to sit as judge, and in this way he kept up a good standard of justice for a long time.


[32] ἔπειθ' ὑπὸ γήρως βαρυνόμενος καὶ τὰ συνήθη πράττειν ἐμποδιζόμενος τοῖς υἱοῖς τὴν ἀρχὴν καὶ τὴν προστασίαν τοῦ ἔθνους παραδίδωσιν, ὧν ὁ μὲν πρεσβύτερος Ἰοῦλος προσηγορεύετο, τῷ δὲ νεωτέρῳ Ἐβίᾳ ὄνομα ἦν. προσέταξε δὲ τὸν μὲν ἐν Βεθήλῳ πόλει καθεζόμενον κρίνειν, τὸν δ' ἕτερον ἐν Βερσουβεὶ μερίσας τὸν ὑπακουσόμενον ἑκατέρῳ λαόν. [33] ἐγένοντο δὲ σαφὲς οὗτοι παράδειγμα καὶ τεκμήριον τοῦ μὴ τὸν τρόπον ὁμοίους τοῖς φύσασι γίνεσθαί τινας, ἀλλὰ τάχα μὲν χρηστοὺς καὶ μετρίους ἐκ πονηρῶν, τότε μέν γε φαύλους ἐξ ἀγαθῶν παρέσχον αὑτοὺς γενομένους: [34] τῶν γὰρ τοῦ πατρὸς ἐπιτηδευμάτων ἐκτραπόμενοι καὶ τὴν ἐναντίαν ὁδὸν ἀπελθόντες δώρων καὶ λημμάτων αἰσχρῶν καθυφίεντο τὸ δίκαιον, καὶ τὰς κρίσεις οὐ πρὸς τὴν ἀλήθειαν, ἀλλὰ πρὸς τὸ κέρδος ποιούμενοι καὶ πρὸς τρυφὴν καὶ πρὸς διαίτας πολυτελεῖς ἀπονενευκότες πρῶτον μὲν ὑπεναντία ταῦτα ἔπρασσον τῷ θεῷ, δεύτερον δὲ τῷ προφήτῃ πατρὶ δ' ἑαυτῶν, ὃς πολλὴν καὶ τοῦ τὸ πλῆθος εἶναι δίκαιον σπουδὴν εἰσεφέρετο καὶ πρόνοιαν.
* * *

032 But when worn out with age and no longer able for his accustomed work, he handed over the leadership and presidency of the people to his sons, of whom the elder was called Joel and the younger's name was Abiah. He assigned them to stay and judge the people, one at the city of Bethel and the other at Beersheba, and divided the people into districts to be under the one or other. 033 These provide a clear example and proof of how people's characters differ. Some, though born of wicked parents, may be good and prudent while others can be evil, though born of good parents. 034 For, turning from their father's way and going the opposite way, these perverted justice for the filthy lucre of gifts and bribes and gave judgment not according to truth, but according to bribery, and they turned aside to luxury and high living. Not only was this offensive to God, it was also contrary to the will of their father the prophet, who had taken such care to teach the people righteousness.


[35] Ὁ δὲ λαὸς ἐξυβριζόντων [εἰς] τὴν προτέραν κατάστασιν καὶ πολιτείαν τῶν τοῦ προφήτου παίδων χαλεπῶς τε τοῖς πραττομένοις ἔφερε καὶ πρὸς αὐτὸν συντρέχουσι, διέτριβε δ' ἐν Ἀρμαθᾶ πόλει, καὶ τάς τε τῶν υἱῶν παρανομίας ἔλεγον καὶ ὅτι γηραιὸς ὢν αὐτὸς ἤδη καὶ παρειμένος ὑπὸ τοῦ χρόνου τῶν πραγμάτων οὐκέτι τὸν αὐτὸν προεστάναι δύναται τρόπον: ἐδέοντό τε καὶ ἱκέτευον ἀποδεῖξαί τινα αὐτῶν βασιλέα, ὃς ἄρξει τοῦ ἔθνους καὶ τιμωρήσεται Παλαιστίνους ὀφείλοντας ἔτ' αὐτοῖς δίκας τῶν προτέρων ἀδικημάτων. [36] ἐλύπησαν δὲ σφόδρα τὸν Σαμουῆλον οἱ λόγοι διὰ τὴν σύμφυτον δικαιοσύνην καὶ τὸ πρὸς τοὺς βασιλέας μῖσος: ἥττητο γὰρ δεινῶς τῆς ἀριστοκρατίας ὡς θείας καὶ μακαρίους ποιούσης τοὺς χρωμένους αὐτῆς τῇ πολιτείᾳ. [37] ὑπὸ δὲ φροντίδος καὶ βασάνου τῆς ἐπὶ τοῖς εἰρημένοις οὔτε τροφῆς ἐμνημόνευσεν οὔτε ὕπνου, δι' ὅλης δὲ τῆς νυκτὸς στρέφων τὰς περὶ τῶν πραγμάτων ἐννοίας διεκαρτέρει.
* * *

035 But the people, angry at how the prophet's sons harmed their former constitution and government, hurried to the prophet, then living in the city of Armatha, to tell him what was going on, and of his sons' lawlessness. As he himself was old and too weakened by age to still oversee matters in the same way, they implored him to appoint someone as king over them, to rule the nation and punish the Philistines as they deserved, for their past wrongs. 036 The message greatly troubled Samuel, due to his innate love of justice and his hatred of kingly rule, for he strongly favoured aristocracy, as the system most conducive of godliness and prosperity for its followers. 037 His concern and turmoil at what they had said left him unable to either eat or sleep, but he lay awake all night thinking on these matters.


[38] Ἔχοντι δὲ οὕτως ἐμφανίζεται τὸ θεῖον καὶ παραμυθεῖται μὴ δυσφορεῖν ἐφ' οἷς ἠξίωσε τὸ πλῆθος, ὡς οὐκ ἐκεῖνον ὑπερηφανήσοντας ἀλλ' ἑαυτὸν, εἰ μὴ βασιλεύσει μόνος: ταῦτα δὲ ἀφ' ἧς ἡμέρας ἐξήγαγεν αὐτοὺς ἀπ' Αἰγύπτου μηχανᾶσθαι τὰ ἔργα: λήψεσθαι μέντοι γε οὐκ εἰς μακρὰν μετάνοιαν αὐτοὺς ἐπίπονον, ὑφ' ἧς οὐδὲν μὲν ἀγένητον ἔσται τῶν ἐσομένων, ἐλεγχθήσονται δὲ καταφρονήσαντες καὶ βουλὰς οὐκ εὐχαρίστους πρὸς ἐμὲ καὶ τὴν σὴν προφητείαν λαβόντες. [39] κελεύω δή σε χειροτονεῖν αὐτοῖς ὃν ἂν ἐγὼ προείπω βασιλέα προδηλώσαντα ποταπῶν τε πειραθήσονται βασιλευόμενοι κακῶν καὶ διαμαρτυράμενον ἐφ' οἵαν σπεύδουσι μεταβολήν."
* * *

038 While he was in this state, God appeared to him and comforted him, saying that he need not worry about what the people wanted, for it was not he, but God Himself whom they despised, by not wanting him as their only king. They had been plotting this deed from the day they came out of Egypt, and would soon bitterly repent what they had done, but their future repentance could not undo what had been done. "They will be repaid for their contempt and ingratitude to me and to your prophetic office. 039 So I command you to appoint as their king the one I shall show you, but first describe the evils kingly government will bring upon them and tell them publicly what a great change they are hurrying into."


[40] Ταῦτ' ἀκούσας Σαμουῆλος ἅμα ἕῳ συγκαλέσας τοὺς Ἰουδαίους ἀποδείξειν αὐτοῖς βασιλέα ὡμολόγησεν, ἔφη δὲ δεῖν πρῶτον μὲν αὐτοῖς ἐκδιηγήσασθαι τὰ παρὰ τῶν βασιλέων ἐσόμενα καὶ ὅσοις συνενεχθήσονται κακοῖς: "γινώσκετε γὰρ ὅτι πρῶτον μὲν ὑμῶν ἀποσπάσουσι τὰ τέκνα καὶ τὰ μὲν αὐτῶν ἁρματηλάτας εἶναι κελεύσουσι, τοὺς δ' ἱππεῖς καὶ σωματοφύλακας, δρομεῖς δὲ ἄλλους καὶ χιλιάρχους καὶ ἑκατοντάρχους, ποιήσουσι δὲ καὶ τεχνίτας ὁπλοποιοὺς καὶ ἁρματοποιοὺς καὶ ὀργάνων τέκτονας γεωργούς τε καὶ τῶν ἰδίων ἀγρῶν ἐπιμελητὰς καὶ σκαπανεῖς ἀμπέλων, [41] καὶ οὐδέν ἐστιν ὃ μὴ κελευόμενοι ποιήσουσιν ἀνδραπόδων ἀργυρωνήτων τρόπον: καὶ τὰς θυγατέρας δ' ὑμῶν μυρεψοὺς ἀποφανοῦσι καὶ ὀψοποιοὺς καὶ σιτοποιούς, καὶ πᾶν ἔργον ὃ θεραπαινίδες ἐξ ἀνάγκης πληγὰς φοβούμεναι καὶ βασάνους ὑπηρετήσουσι. κτῆσιν δὲ τὴν ὑμετέραν ἀφαιρήσονται καὶ ταύτην εὐνούχοις καὶ σωματοφύλαξι δωρήσονται καὶ βοσκημάτων ἀγέλας τοῖς αὑτῶν προσνεμοῦσι. [42] συνελόντι δ' εἰπεῖν, δουλεύσετε μετὰ πάντων τῶν ὑμετέρων τῷ βασιλεῖ σὺν τοῖς αὑτῶν οἰκέταις: ὃς γενόμενος μνήμην ὑμῖν τῶνδε τῶν λόγων γεννήσει καὶ τῷ πάσχειν αὐτὰ μεταγινώσκοντας ἱκετεῦσαι τὸν θεὸν ἐλεῆσαί τε ὑμᾶς καὶ δωρήσασθαι ταχεῖαν ἀπαλλαγὴν τῶν βασιλέων: ὁ δ' οὐ προσδέξεται τὰς δεήσεις, ἀλλὰ παραπέμψας ἐάσει δίκην ὑποσχεῖν ὑμᾶς τῆς αὑτῶν κακοβουλίας."
* * *

040 Hearing this, Samuel called the Jews early in the morning and declared that he was to appoint them a king, but that he must first describe to them how they would be treated by their kings and what evils they would have to bear. "You must realise that first of all they will take away your sons from you and force some to drive their chariots and be their cavalry and bodyguards, to be runners and captains of thousands and of hundreds. They will also make them artisans, armourers and makers of chariots and instruments. They will make them farm and cultivate their fields and dig their vineyards. 041 There will be nothing they will not do under orders, like servants bought at a price. Your daughters they will make confectioners and cooks and bakers, and they will have to do all sorts of work like female slaves, for fear of blows and punishments. They will take what you own, to give to their eunuchs and bodyguards, and give your herds of livestock to those who serve them. 042 Briefly, you and all that is yours, will be slaves to your king, like his domestic staff. When this happens, you will remember what I now say, and when you repent of what you have done, you will beg God for mercy and speedy relief from your kings, but he will not accept your prayers. He will ignore you and let you suffer the punishment your evil conduct has deserved."


[43] Ἦν δ' ἄρα καὶ πρὸς τὰς προρρήσεις τῶν συμβησομένων ἀνόητον τὸ πλῆθος καὶ δύσκολον ἐξελεῖν τῆς διανοίας κρίσιν ἤδη παρὰ τῷ λογισμῷ καθιδρυμένην: οὐδὲ γὰρ ἐπεστράφησαν οὐδ' ἐμέλησεν αὐτοῖς τῶν Σαμουήλου λόγων, ἀλλ' ἐνέκειντο λιπαρῶς καὶ χειροτονεῖν ἠξίουν ἤδη τὸν βασιλέα καὶ μὴ φροντίζειν τῶν ἐσομένων: [44] ἐπὶ γὰρ τιμωρίᾳ τῶν ἐχθρῶν ἀνάγκη τὸν πολεμήσοντα σὺν αὑτοῖς ἔχειν, καὶ οὐδὲν ἄτοπον εἶναι τῶν πλησιοχώρων βασιλευομένων τὴν αὐτὴν ἔχειν αὐτοὺς πολιτείαν. ὁρῶν δ' αὐτοὺς μηδ' ὑπὸ τῶν προειρημένων ἀπεστραμμένους ὁ Σαμουῆλος, ἀλλ' ἐπιμένοντας "νῦν μὲν, εἶπεν, ἄπιτε πρὸς αὑτοὺς ἕκαστος, μεταπέμψομαι δὲ ὑμᾶς εἰς δέον, ὅταν μάθω παρὰ τοῦ θεοῦ τίνα δίδωσιν ὑμῖν βασιλέα."
* * *

043 But the foolish people turned a deaf ear to the predictions of what would happen, being too wicked to let go of the decision, however unwisely taken. They could not be turned from their purpose and would not heed Samuel's words, but stubbornly insisted on their demand that he appoint them a king now, and not worry about the future, 044 for they needed one to fight on their side and avenge them on their enemies. When their neighbours were ruled by kings, it was no way absurd that they too should have the same form of rule. So seeing that his words had not diverted them from their purpose but that they held firm, Samuel said, "Let each of you go home for now. I will send for you at the right time, when I have learned from God whom he gives you as king."

Chapter 4. [045-067]
Samuel appoints Saul as king of Israel, by God's command


[45] Ἦν δέ τις ἐκ τῆς Βενιαμίτιδος φυλῆς ἀνὴρ εὖ γεγονὼς καὶ ἀγαθὸς τὸ ἦθος, Κεὶς ὄνομα: τούτῳ παῖς ὑπῆρχεν, ἦν δὲ νεανίας τὴν μορφὴν ἄριστος καὶ τὸ σῶμα μέγας τό τε φρόνημα καὶ τὴν διάνοιαν ἀμείνων τῶν βλεπομένων: Σαοῦλον αὐτὸν ἐκάλουν. [46] οὗτος ὁ Κείς, ὄνων αὐτῷ ἐκ τῆς νομῆς καλῶν ἀποπλανηθεισῶν, ἥδετο γὰρ αὐταῖς ὡς οὐκ ἄλλῳ τινὶ τῶν κτημάτων, τὸν υἱὸν μεθ' ἑνὸς θεράποντος ἐπὶ ζήτησιν τῶν κτηνῶν ἐξέπεμψεν: ὁ δ' ἐπεὶ τὴν πάτριον περιῆλθε φυλὴν εἰς τὰς ἄλλας ἀφίκετο, οὐδ' ἐν ταύταις δ' ἐπιτυχὼν ἀπιέναι διεγνώκει, μὴ ποιήσῃ περὶ αὑτοῦ τῷ πατρὶ λοιπὸν φροντίδα. [47] τοῦ δ' ἑπομένου θεράποντος ὡς ἐγένοντο κατὰ τὴν Ἁραμαθὰ πόλιν εἶναι προφήτην ἐν αὐτῇ φήσαντος ἀληθῆ καὶ πρὸς αὐτὸν βαδίζειν συμβουλεύσαντος, γνώσεσθαι γὰρ παρ' αὐτοῦ τὸ περὶ τῶν ὄνων τέλος, οὐθὲν ἔχειν πορευθέντας εἶπεν ἀντὶ τῆς προφητείας ὃ παράσχωσιν αὐτῷ: κεκενῶσθαι γὰρ ἤδη τῶν ἐφοδίων. [48] τοῦ δ' οἰκέτου τέταρτον αὐτῷ παρεῖναι σίκλου φήσαντος καὶ τοῦτο δώσειν, ὑπὸ γὰρ ἀγνοίας τοῦ μὴ λαμβάνειν τὸν προφήτην μισθὸν ἐπλανῶντο, παραγίνονται καὶ πρὸς ταῖς πύλαις παρατυγχάνοντες παρθένοις ἐφ' ὕδωρ βαδιζούσαις ἐρωτῶσιν αὐτὰς τοῦ προφήτου τὴν οἰκίαν. αἱ δὲ σημαίνουσι καὶ σπεύδειν παρεκελεύσαντο πρὶν αὐτὸν εἰς τὸ δεῖπνον κατακλιθῆναι: πολλοὺς γὰρ ἑστιᾶν καὶ προκατακλίνεσθαι τῶν κεκλημένων. [49] ὁ δὲ Σαμουῆλος διὰ τοῦτο πολλοὺς ἐπὶ τὴν ἑστίαν τότε συνήγαγε: δεομένῳ γὰρ κατὰ πᾶσαν ἡμέραν αὐτῷ τοῦ θεοῦ προειπεῖν τίνα ποιήσει βασιλέα τῇ παρελθούσῃ τοῦτον μηνύσαντος, πέμψειν γὰρ αὐτός τινα νεανίσκον ἐκ τῆς Βενιαμίτιδος φυλῆς κατὰ τήνδε τὴν ὥραν, αὐτὸς [μὲν] ἐπὶ τοῦ δώματος καθεζόμενος ἐξεδέχετο τὸν καιρὸν γενέσθαι, πληρωθέντος δ' αὐτοῦ καταβὰς ἐπὶ τὸ δεῖπνον ἐπορεύετο. [50] συναντᾷ δὲ τῷ Σαούλῳ καὶ ὁ θεὸς αὐτῷ σημαίνει τοῦτον εἶναι τὸν ἄρξειν μέλλοντα. Σαοῦλος δὲ πρόσεισι τῷ Σαμουήλῳ καὶ προσαγορεύσας ἐδεῖτο μηνύειν τὴν οἰκίαν τοῦ προφήτου: ξένος γὰρ ὢν ἀγνοεῖν ἔφασκε. [51] τοῦ δὲ Σαμουήλου αὐτὸν εἶναι φράσαντος καὶ ἄγοντος ἐπὶ τὸ δεῖπνον, ὡς τῶν ὄνων ἐφ' ὧν τὴν ζήτησιν ἐκπεμφθείη σεσωσμένων τά τε πάντα ἀγαθὰ ἔχειν αὐτῷ κεκυρωμένα, προστυχών "ἀλλ' ἥττων, εἶπεν, ἐγὼ, δέσποτα, ταύτης τῆς ἐλπίδος καὶ φυλῆς μικροτέρας ἢ βασιλέας ποιεῖν καὶ πατριᾶς ταπεινοτέρας τῶν ἄλλων πατριῶν. σὺ δὲ παίζεις καὶ γέλωτά με τίθεσαι περὶ μειζόνων ἢ κατὰ τὴν ἐμὴν χώραν διαλεγόμενος. [52] ὁ δὲ προφήτης ἀγαγὼν αὐτὸν ἐπὶ τὴν ἑστίαν κατακλίνει καὶ τὸν ἀκόλουθον ἐπάνω τῶν κεκλημένων: οὗτοι δ' ἦσαν ἑβδομήκοντα τὸν ἀριθμόν: προστάσσει δὲ τοῖς διακόνοις παραθεῖναι τῷ Σαούλῳ μερίδα βασιλικήν. ἐπεὶ δὲ κοίτης ὥρα προσῆγεν οἱ μὲν ἀναστάντες ἀπελύοντο πρὸς αὑτοὺς ἕκαστοι, ὁ δὲ Σαοῦλος παρὰ τῷ προφήτῃ σὺν τῷ θεράποντι κατεκοιμήθη.
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045 There was a man of the tribe of Benjamin, well born and virtuous whose name was Kish. He had a son named Saul, a handsome and tall youth, whose prudence and understanding were even finer than his looks. 046 This Kish had some fine donkeys that had wandered from the pasture where they fed, and he valued them more than all his other animals. So he sent out his son along with a servant to search for the animals, and after searching through his own tribe and other tribes without finding them, he decided to go home, not to cause his father to worry about him. 047 As they were near the city of Armatha, his servant told him a prophet lived in it who declared truth, and advised him to go and find out from him what had happened the donkeys. He replied that if they went to him they had nothing to repay him for his prophecy, since their money was spent. 048 The servant said he had still the fourth of a shekel and that he could give this to him, not realising that the prophet would accept no reward. So they went to him and near the gates they met some girls going to fetch water and asked directions to the prophet's house. They pointed it out and told them to hurry before he sat down to supper, for he had invited many to a feast and used to take his seat before his guests arrived. 049 Now Samuel had gathered so many to his feast for a reason: every day he prayed God to foretell to him whom to make king, and the previous day he had said he would send a young man from the tribe of Benjamin about this hour. So he sat on his housetop waiting for the hour, and at the right moment he came down to supper. 050 Then, as he met Saul, God revealed to him that this was the one who was to rule. Saul came up to Samuel, greeted him and asked him which was the prophet's house, since as he was a stranger he did not know it. 051 Samuel said it was himself, and led him in to supper, assuring him that the donkeys he was seeking had been found, and that great things were destined for him. Saul replied, "But master, I am too small to hope for any such thing, and from a tribe too small to produce kings, and of a humbler family than many others. You only mock me and will make me a laughing-stock, by telling me of matters too high for my station." 052 Still, the prophet led him in to the feast followed by his servant, and made him sit above the other invited guests, seventy in number, and told the servants to set the royal portion before Saul. When it was time to go to bed, all the rest got up and went home, but Saul and his servant stayed on with the prophet, and slept there.


[53] Ἅμα δὲ ἡμέρᾳ Σαμουῆλος ἀναστήσας αὐτὸν ἐκ τῆς κοίτης προύπεμπε καὶ γενόμενος ἔξω τῆς πόλεως ἐκέλευσε τὸν μὲν θεράποντα ποιῆσαι προελθεῖν, ὑπολείπεσθαι δὲ αὐτὸν: ἔχειν γὰρ αὐτῷ τι φράσαι [μηδενὸς ἄλλου παρόντος]. [54] καὶ ὁ μὲν Σαοῦλος ἀποπέμπεται τὸν ἀκόλουθον, λαβὼν δ' ὁ προφήτης τὸ ἅγιον ἔλαιον καταχεῖ τῆς τοῦ νεανίσκου κεφαλῆς καὶ κατασπασάμενος "ἴσθι, φησὶ, βασιλεὺς ὑπὸ τοῦ θεοῦ κεχειροτονημένος ἐπί τε Παλαιστίνους καὶ τὴν ὑπὲρ Ἑβραίων ἄμυναν. τούτων δὲ ἔσται σοι σημεῖον ὅ σε βούλομαι προγινώσκειν: [55] ὅταν ἀπέλθῃς ἐντεῦθεν καταλήψῃ τρεῖς ἀνθρώπους ἐν τῇ ὁδῷ προσκυνῆσαι τῷ θεῷ πορευομένους εἰς Βέθηλα, ὧν τὸν μὲν πρῶτον τρεῖς ἄρτους ὄψει κομίζοντα, τὸν δὲ δεύτερον ἔριφον, ὁ τρίτος δὲ ἀσκὸν οἴνου φέρων ἀκολουθήσει. ἀσπάσονται δέ σε οὗτοι καὶ φιλοφρονήσονται καὶ δώσουσί σοι ἄρτους δύο, σὺ δὲ λήψῃ. [56] κἀκεῖθεν ἥξεις εἰς τὸ Ῥαχήλας καλούμενον μνημεῖον, ὅπου συμβαλεῖς τῷ σεσῶσθαί σου τὰς ὄνους εὐαγγελιουμένῳ: ἔπειτ' ἐκεῖθεν ἐλθὼν εἰς Γεβαθὰ προφήταις ἐκκλησιάζουσιν ἐπιτεύξῃ καὶ γενόμενος ἔνθεος προφητεύσεις σὺν αὐτοῖς, ὡς πάνθ' ὅντιν' ὁρῶντα ἐκπλήττεσθαί τε καὶ θαυμάζειν λέγοντα "πόθεν εἰς τοῦτο εὐδαιμονίας ὁ Κεισαίου παῖς παρῆλθεν;" ὅταν δέ σοι ταῦτα γένηται τὰ σημεῖα, [57] τὸν θεὸν ἴσθι μετὰ σοῦ τυγχάνοντα, ἄσπασαί τε τὸν πατέρα σου καὶ τοὺς συγγενεῖς. ἥξεις δὲ μετάπεμπτος εἰς Γάλγαλα ὑπ' ἐμοῦ, ἵνα χαριστήρια τούτων θύσωμεν τῷ θεῷ." φράσας ταῦτα καὶ προειπὼν ἀποπέμπει τὸν νεανίσκον: τῷ Σαούλῳ δὲ πάντα κατὰ τὴν Σαμουήλου προφητείαν ἀπήντησεν.
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053 At daybreak, Samuel roused him from his bed to send him on his way, and when outside the city, he asked him to send his servant ahead, but to wait himself, as he had something to tell him with nobody else present. 054 So Saul sent away his servant. Then the prophet took a vessel of oil and poured it upon the head of the young man and kissed him and said, "Be king, ordained by God, against the Philistines, to avenge what the Hebrews have suffered from them, and here is a sign of it, that I want you to note. 055 When leave here, you will find on the road three men going to worship God at Bethel; you will see the first carrying three loaves of bread, the second a kid goat and the third will follow with a skinful of wine. These will greet you and speak nicely to you and give you two of their loaves, which you shall accept. 056 You will come to a place called Rachel's Monument, where you will be told the good news that your donkeys are safe. Then when you come to Gabatha, you shall meet a company of prophets and you will be seized with the divine Spirit and prophesy along with them, until everyone who sees you will be astounded and say, "How has the son of Kish reached such a height?' 057 When these signs happen to you, then know that God is with you. Say goodbye to your father and your relatives, and come to Galgala when I send for you, that we may offer a thanksgiving sacrifice to God for these blessings." When Samuel had said this and made these predictions, he sent the young man away, and everything happened to Saul as Samuel had predicted.


[58] Ὡς δὲ ἦλθεν εἰς τὴν οἰκίαν τοῦ συγγενοῦς αὐτοῦ Ἀβηνάρου, καὶ γὰρ ἐκεῖνον τῶν ἄλλων οἰκείων μᾶλλον ἔστεργεν, ἀνερωτῶντος περὶ τῆς ἀποδημίας καὶ τῶν κατ' αὐτὸν γεγονότων τῶν μὲν ἄλλων οὐδὲν ἀπεκρύψατο οὐδ' ὡς ἀφίκοιτο παρὰ Σαμουῆλον τὸν προφήτην οὐδ' ὡς ἐκεῖνος αὐτῷ σεσῶσθαι τὰς ὄνους ἔφρασε, περὶ δὲ τῆς βασιλείας καὶ τῶν κατ' αὐτὴν, [59] ἃ φθόνον ἀκουόμενα καὶ ἀπιστίαν ἔχειν ᾤετο, σιωπᾷ πρὸς αὐτὸν καὶ οὐδὲ πρὸς εὔνουν σφόδρα δοκοῦντα εἶναι καὶ περισσότερον τῶν ἀφ' αἵματος ὑπ' αὐτοῦ στεργόμενον ἀσφαλὲς ἢ σῶφρον ἔδοξε μηνύειν λογισάμενος οἶμαι τὴν ἀνθρωπίνην φύσιν οἵα ταῖς ἀληθείαις ἐστίν, ὅτι βεβαίως οὐδεὶς οὔτε φίλων οὔτε συγγενῶν οὐδ' ἄχρι τῶν παρὰ τοῦ θεοῦ λαμπρῶν ἀποσώζει τὴν διάθεσιν, ἀλλὰ πρὸς τὰς ὑπεροχὰς κακοήθεις τυγχάνουσιν ἤδη καὶ βάσκανοι.
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058 When Saul reached the house of his kinsman Abner, his favourite relative, and was asked about his journey and how he had fared during it, he concealed nothing from him about the rest, his coming to The prophet Samuel, and how he told him the donkeys were found, but about the kingdom and related matters, 059 news of which he thought would bring him envy and distrust, he was silent. He did not think it safe or prudent to tell him, although he seemed very friendly to him and he loved him above the rest of his relatives, for, I suppose, he reflected on how human nature really is, that none of our friends or relatives is so firm as to stay cordially disposed when God shines on one, but always feel malice and envy toward those who are highly placed.


[60] Σαμουῆλος δὲ καλεῖ τὸν λαὸν εἰς Μασφὰ πόλιν καὶ πρὸς αὐτὸν διατίθεται λόγους, οὓς κατ' ἐντολὴν φράζειν ἔλεγε τοῦ θεοῦ, ὅτι τὴν ἐλευθερίαν αὐτοῖς ἐκείνου παρασχόντος καὶ τοὺς πολεμίους δουλώσαντος ἀμνημονήσειαν τῶν εὐεργεσιῶν, καὶ τὸν μὲν θεὸν ἀποχειροτονοῦσι τῆς βασιλείας οὐκ εἰδότες ὡς συμφορώτατον ὑπὸ τοῦ πάντων ἀρίστου προστατεῖσθαι, [61] θεὸς δὲ πάντων ἄριστος, αἱροῦνται δ' ἔχειν ἄνθρωπον βασιλέα, ὃς ὡς κτήματι τοῖς ὑποτεταγμένοις κατὰ βούλησιν καὶ ἐπιθυμίαν καὶ τῶν ἄλλων παθῶν ὁρμὴν χρήσεται τῆς ἐξουσίας ἀφειδῶς ἐμφορούμενος, ἀλλ' οὐχ ὡς ἴδιον ἔργον καὶ κατασκεύασμα τὸ τῶν ἀνθρώπων γένος οὕτως διατηρῆσαι σπουδάσει, ὁ θεὸς δὲ κατὰ ταύτην τὴν αἰτίαν κήδοιτο. ἀλλ' ἐπεὶ δέδοκται ταῦτα ὑμῖν καὶ κεκράτηκεν ἡ πρὸς τὸν θεὸν ὕβρις, τάχθητε πάντες κατὰ φυλάς τε καὶ σκῆπτρα καὶ κλήρους βάλετε."
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060 Samuel called the people together to the city of Masphate and put these words before them, which he said he spoke at God's command: That when he had won them freedom and enslaved the enemy, they had forgotten his good deeds and rejected God as their King, not seeing the benefit of being ruled by the best of beings, for God is best of all. 061 They chose to have a man for their king, though kings will use their subjects as beasts, as their own will and inclination and other passions dictate, helplessly carried away by the lust of power, instead of trying to keep the race of mankind as God's work and creation, in the way that He would want. "But since you have planned and decided this insult to God, come by tribes and families and cast lots about it."


[62] Ποιησάντων δὲ τοῦτο τῶν Ἑβραίων ὁ τῆς Βενιαμίτιδος κλῆρος ἐξέπεσε, ταύτης δὲ κληρωθείσης ἔλαχεν ἡ Ματρὶς καλουμένη πατριὰ, ἧς κατ' ἄνδρα κληρωθείσης λαγχάνει ὁ Κεισαίου βασιλεύειν παῖς Σαοῦλος. [63] γνοὺς δὲ τοῦθ' ὁ νεανίσκος φθάσας ἐκποδὼν αὑτὸν ἐποίει μὴ βουλόμενος οἶμαι δοκεῖν τὴν ἀρχὴν ἑκὼν λαμβάνειν, ἀλλὰ τοσαύτην ἐνεδείξατο ἐγκράτειαν καὶ σωφροσύνην, ὥστε τῶν πλείστων οὐδ' ἐπὶ μικραῖς εὐπραγίαις τὴν χαρὰν κατασχεῖν δυναμένων, ἀλλ' εἰς τὸ πᾶσι γενέσθαι φανεροὺς προπιπτόντων, ὁ δ' οὐ μόνον οὐδὲν ἐνέφηνε τοιοῦτον ἐπὶ βασιλείᾳ καὶ τῷ τοσούτων καὶ τηλικούτων ἐθνῶν ἀποδεδεῖχθαι δεσπότης, ἀλλὰ καὶ τῆς ὄψεως αὑτὸν τῆς τῶν βασιλευθησομένων ἐξέκλεψεν καὶ ζητεῖν αὐτὸν καὶ περὶ τοῦτο πονεῖν παρεσκεύασεν. [64] ὧν ἀμηχανούντων καὶ φροντιζόντων, ὅτι καὶ γένοιτο ἀφανὴς ὁ Σαοῦλος, ὁ προφήτης ἱκέτευε τὸν θεὸν δεῖξαι ποῦ ποτ' εἴη καὶ παρασχεῖν εἰς ἐμφανὲς τὸν νεανίσκον. [65] μαθὼν δὲ παρὰ τοῦ θεοῦ τὸν τόπον ἔνθα κρύπτεται ὁ Σαοῦλος πέμπει τοὺς ἄξοντας αὐτὸν καὶ παραγενόμενον ἵστησι μέσον τοῦ πλήθους. ἐξεῖχε δὲ ἁπάντων, καὶ τὸ ὕψος ἦν βασιλικώτατος.
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062 When the Hebrews did so, the lot fell on the tribe of Benjamin, and within it the Matri family was chosen; and individually it fell to Saul, son of Kish, to be their king. 063 When the young man knew of this, he quickly went away and hid himself, not wishing, I suppose, to seem to want to take over the leadership. He showed such restraint and modesty, that while most people are unable to contain their joy on winning even small prizes, but insist on displaying themselves to everyone, not only did he do nothing of that kind when he was appointed master of so many great tribes, but he stole away and hid himself from the sight of those he was to rule and made them seek him out with great difficulty. 064 When the people were at a loss and anxious at Saul's disappearance, the prophet implored God to show where he was and bring the young man before them. 065 Learning from God the place where Saul was hidden, he sent men to bring him and when he arrived, they set him in the middle of the people. He was taller than any of them and his stature was most majestic.


[66] Λέγει δὲ ὁ προφήτης: "τοῦτον ὑμῖν ὁ θεὸς ἔδωκε βασιλέα: ὁρᾶτε δὲ ὡς καὶ κρείττων ἐστὶ πάντων καὶ τῆς ἀρχῆς ἄξιος." ὡς δ' ἐπευφήμησε τῷ βασιλεῖ σωτηρίαν ὁ λαὸς, τὰ μέλλοντα συμβήσεσθαι καταγράψας αὐτοῖς ὁ προφήτης ἀνέγνω τοῦ βασιλέως ἀκροωμένου καὶ τὸ βιβλίον τίθησιν ἐν τῇ τοῦ θεοῦ σκηνῇ ταῖς μετέπειτα γενεαῖς μαρτύριον ὧν προείρηκε. [67] ταῦτ' ἐπιτελέσας ὁ Σαμουῆλος ἀπολύει τὴν πληθύν. καὶ αὐτὸς δὲ εἰς Ἀρμαθὰ παραγίνεται πόλιν, πατρὶς γὰρ ἦν αὐτῷ, Σαούλῳ δὲ ἀπερχομένῳ εἰς Γαβαθὴν, ἐξ ἧς ὑπῆρχε, συνήρχοντο πολλοὶ μὲν ἀγαθοὶ τὴν προσήκουσαν βασιλεῖ τιμὴν νέμοντες, πονηροὶ δὲ πλείους, οἳ καταφρονοῦντες αὐτοῦ καὶ τοὺς πολλοὺς ἐχλεύαζον καὶ οὔτε δῶρα προσέφερον οὔτ' ἐν σπουδῇ καὶ λόγῳ τὸ ἀρέσκεσθαι τὸν Σαοῦλον ἐτίθεντο.
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066 Then the prophet said, God gives you this man as your king: see how he is taller than any of the people and worthy of this dominion." So as soon as the people had acclaimed, "God save the king," the prophet wrote down what would happen and read it in the hearing of the king and deposited the book in the Tent of God, as a witness to future generations of what he had foretold. 067 With that accomplished, Samuel dismissed the people and came to his own region, the city of Armatha. Saul went off to Gaba where he came from, and many were loyal and paid him the respect due to him, but most were disloyal and despised him and scorned the others, and neither gave him giftts nor made an effort in act or word to win Saul's favour.

Chapter 5. [068-094]
Saul defeats the Ammanites and takes their spoils


[68] Μηνὶ δ' ὕστερον ἄρχει τῆς παρὰ πάντων αὐτῷ τιμῆς ὁ πρὸς Ναάσην πόλεμος τὸν τῶν Ἀμμανιτῶν βασιλέα: οὗτος γὰρ πολλὰ κακὰ τοὺς πέραν τοῦ Ἰορδάνου ποταμοῦ κατῳκημένους τῶν Ἰουδαίων διατίθησι μετὰ πολλοῦ καὶ μαχίμου στρατεύματος διαβὰς ἐπ' αὐτούς: [69] καὶ τὰς πόλεις αὐτῶν εἰς δουλείαν ὑπάγεται ἰσχύι μὲν καὶ βίᾳ πρὸς τὸ παρὸν αὐτοὺς χειρωσάμενος, σοφίᾳ δὲ καὶ ἐπινοίᾳ πρὸς τὸ μηδ' αὖθις ἀποστάντας δυνηθῆναι τὴν ὑπ' αὐτῷ δουλείαν διαφυγεῖν ἀσθενεῖς ποιῶν: τῶν γὰρ ἢ κατὰ πίστιν ὡς αὐτὸν ἀφικνουμένων ἢ λαμβανομένων πολέμου νόμῳ τοὺς δεξιοὺς ὀφθαλμοὺς ἐξέκοπτεν. [70] ἐποίει δὲ τοῦθ', ὅπως τῆς ἀριστερᾶς αὐτοῖς ὄψεως ὑπὸ τῶν θυρεῶν καλυπτομένης ἄχρηστοι παντελῶς εἶεν. [71] καὶ ὁ μὲν τῶν Ἀμμανιτῶν βασιλεὺς ταῦτ' ἐργασάμενος τοὺς πέραν τοῦ Ἰορδάνου ἐπὶ τοὺς Γαλαδηνοὺς λεγομένους ἐπεστράτευσε καὶ στρατοπεδευσάμενος πρὸς τῇ μητροπόλει τῶν πολεμίων, Ἰαβὶς δ' ἐστὶν αὕτη, πέμπει πρὸς αὐτοὺς πρέσβεις κελεύων ἤδη παραδοῦναι σφᾶς αὐτοὺς ἐπὶ τῷ τοὺς δεξιοὺς αὐτῶν ὀφθαλμοὺς ἐξορύξαι, ἢ πολιορκήσειν ἠπείλει καὶ τὰς πόλεις αὐτῶν ἀναστήσειν: τὴν δ' αἵρεσιν ἐπ' αὐτοῖς εἶναι, πότερόν ποτε βραχύ τι τοῦ σώματος ἀποτεμεῖν θέλουσιν ἢ παντάπασιν ἀπολωλέναι. [72] οἱ δὲ Γαλαδηνοὶ καταπλαγέντες πρὸς οὐδέτερον μὲν ἐτόλμησαν οὐδὲν εἰπεῖν οὔτ' εἰ παραδιδόασιν αὑτοὺς οὔτ' εἰ πολεμοῦσιν, ἀνοχὴν δ' ἡμερῶν ἑπτὰ λαβεῖν ἠξίωσαν, ἵνα πρεσβευσάμενοι πρὸς τοὺς ὁμοφύλους παρακαλέσωσι συμμαχεῖν αὐτοῖς καὶ εἰ μὲν ἔλθοι βοήθεια πολεμῶσιν, εἰ δ' ἄπορα εἴη τὰ παρ' ἐκείνων παραδώσειν αὑτοὺς ἔφασκον ἐπὶ τῷ παθεῖν ὅτι ἂν αὐτῷ δοκῇ.
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068 In the following month his war with Naases, the king of the Ammanites, began to win him the respect of everybody, for this man had done great harm to the Jews living beyond the Jordan by his campaign against them with a great military force. 069 With violent force he also reduced their cities to slavery, subduing them not only for the present, but with subtlety and foresight weakening them so that later they could not escape from their slavery to him. He gouged out the right eyes of those who either came to him in trust or were captured by him under the rules of war, 070 which he did to render them completely unserviceable [in war,]
with their left eyes covered by their shields. 071 When the king of the Ammanites had done this to the men across the Jordan, he led his army against the people called Galadites and having encamped at the capital of his enemies, which was the city of Jabis, he sent envoys to them, ordering them either to hand themselves over, when they would have their right eyes gouged out, or be besieged and have their cities destroyed. Their choice was between losing a small member of their body, or being killed. 072 The Galadites were so frightened that they dared not make a choice, either to give themselves up or go to war, so they asked for a reprieve of seven days, to send envoys to their countrymen and ask them to be their allies. If they came to their help they would fight, but if they were unable to help them, they would submit and suffer whatever he decided.


[73] Ὁ δὲ Ναάσης καταφρονήσας τοῦ τῶν Γαλαδηνῶν πλήθους καὶ τῆς ἀποκρίσεως αὐτῶν δίδωσί τε αὐτοῖς τὴν ἀνοχὴν καὶ πέμπειν πρὸς οὓς ἂν θέλωσι συμμάχους ἐπιτρέπει. πέμπουσιν οὖν εὐθὺς κατὰ πόλιν τοῖς Ἰσραηλίταις οἳ ἤγγελλον τὰ παρὰ τοῦ Ναάσου καὶ τὴν ἀμηχανίαν ἐν ᾗ καθειστήκεσαν. [74] οἱ δ' εἰς δάκρυα καὶ λύπην ὑπὸ τῆς ἀκοῆς τῶν περὶ τοὺς Ἰαβισηνοὺς προήχθησαν καὶ πέρα τούτων οὐδὲν αὐτοῖς ἄλλο πράττειν συνεχώρει τὸ δέος: γενομένων δὲ τῶν ἀγγέλων καὶ ἐν τῇ Σαούλου τοῦ βασιλέως πόλει καὶ τοὺς κινδύνους ἐν οἷς εἶναι συνέβαινε τοὺς Ἰαβισηνοὺς φρασάντων, ὁ μὲν λαὸς ταὐτὰ τοῖς πρώτοις ἔπασχεν: ὠδύρετο γὰρ τὴν συμφορὰν τὴν τῶν συγγενῶν: [75] ὁ δὲ Σαοῦλος ἀπὸ τῶν περὶ τὴν γεωργίαν παραγενόμενος ἔργων εἰς τὴν πόλιν ἐπιτυγχάνει κλαίουσι τοῖς αὑτοῦ πολίταις, καὶ πυθόμενος τὴν αἰτίαν τῆς συγχύσεως καὶ κατηφείας αὐτῶν μανθάνει τὰ παρὰ τῶν ἀγγέλων. [76] καὶ ἔνθεος γενόμενος ἀποπέμπει μὲν τοὺς Ἰαβισηνοὺς ὑποσχόμενος αὐτοῖς ἥξειν βοηθὸς τῇ τρίτῃ τῶν ἡμερῶν καὶ πρὶν ἥλιον ἀνασχεῖν κρατήσειν τῶν πολεμίων, ἵνα καὶ νενικηκότας ἤδη καὶ τῶν φόβων ἀπηλλαγμένους ὁ ἥλιος ἐπιτείλας ἴδῃ: ὑπομεῖναι δ' ἐκέλευσέ τινας αὐτῶν ἡγησομένους τῆς ὁδοῦ.
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073 With contempt for the Galadite populace and their response, Naases gave them a reprieve, allowing them to send to whoever they pleased for help. Immediately they sent to the Israelites, city by city, telling of Naases' threat and of the plight in which they stood. 074 The hearers wept and grieved about the situation of the Jabisenes, but their fear let them do nothing more. When the messengers came to the city of king Saul and declared the perils of the Jabisenes, the people were as troubled as in the other cities, about the disaster facing their relatives. 075 Then as Saul returned to the city from working on his farm he found his fellow citizens weeping, and on enquiring about the cause of their confusion and sadness learned the messengers' news. 076 Inspired with a divine fury he sent the envoys from the Jabisenes away with a promise to come to their help before sunrise on the third day and defeat their enemies, that the rising sun would see them beaten and the others set free from their fears. He ordered some of them to wait and serve them as guides on the route.


[77] Βουλόμενος δὲ φόβῳ ζημίας τὸν λαὸν ἐπὶ τὸν πρὸς Ἀμμανίτας ἐπιστρέψαι πόλεμον καὶ συνελθεῖν αὐτοὺς ὀξύτερον, ὑποτεμὼν τῶν αὐτοῦ βοῶν τὰ νεῦρα ταὐτὰ διαθήσειν ἠπείλησε τοὺς ἁπάντων, εἰ μὴ πρὸς τὸν Ἰόρδανον ὡπλισμένοι κατὰ τὴν ἐπιοῦσαν ἀπαντήσουσιν ἡμέραν καὶ ἀκολουθήσουσιν αὐτῷ καὶ Σαμουήλῳ τῷ προφήτῃ, ὅπου ποτ' ἂν αὐτοὺς ἀγάγωσι. [78] τῶν δὲ δι' εὐλάβειαν τῆς κατεπηγγελμένης ζημίας εἰς τὸν ὡρισμένον καιρὸν συνελθόντων ἐξαριθμεῖται ἐν Βαλᾶ τῇ πόλει τὸ πλῆθος: εὑρίσκει δὲ τὸν ἀριθμὸν χωρὶς τῆς Ἰούδα φυλῆς εἰς ἑβδομήκοντα μυριάδας συνειλεγμένους, τῆς δὲ φυλῆς ἐκείνης ἦσαν μυριάδες ἑπτά. [79] διαβὰς δὲ τὸν Ἰόρδανον καὶ σχοίνων δέκα δι' ὅλης τῆς νυκτὸς ἀνύσας ὁδὸν φθάνει μὲν ἥλιον ἀνίσχοντα, τριχῇ δὲ τὸ στράτευμα διελὼν ἐπιπίπτει πανταχόθεν αἰφνιδίως οὐ προσδοκῶσι τοῖς ἐχθροῖς, καὶ συμβαλὼν εἰς μάχην ἄλλους τε πολλοὺς ἀποκτείνει τῶν Ἀμμανιτῶν καὶ Ναάσην τὸν βασιλέα. [80] τοῦτο λαμπρὸν ἐπράχθη τῷ Σαούλῳ τὸ ἔργον καὶ πρὸς πάντας αὐτὸν διήγγειλε τοὺς Ἑβραίους ἐπαινούμενον καὶ θαυμαστῆς ἀπολαύοντα δόξης ἐπ' ἀνδρείᾳ: καὶ γὰρ εἴ τινες ἦσαν οἳ πρότερον αὐτοῦ κατεφρόνουν, τότε μετέστησαν ἐπὶ τὸ τιμᾶν καὶ πάντων ἄριστον νομίζειν: οὐ γὰρ ἤρκεσεν αὐτῷ τοὺς Ἰαβισηνοὺς σεσωκέναι μόνον, ἀλλὰ καὶ τῇ τῶν Ἀμμανιτῶν ἐπιστρατεύσας χώρᾳ πᾶσαν αὐτὴν καταστρέφεται καὶ πολλὴν λαβὼν λείαν λαμπρὸς εἰς τὴν οἰκείαν ὑπέστρεψεν. [81] ὁ δὲ λαὸς ὑφ' ἡδονῆς τῶν Σαούλῳ κατωρθωμένων ἔχαιρε μὲν ὅτι τοιοῦτον ἐχειροτόνησε βασιλέα, πρὸς δὲ τοὺς οὐδὲν ὄφελος αὐτὸν ἔσεσθαι τοῖς πράγμασι λέγοντας ἐβόων: "ποῦ νῦν εἰσὶν οὗτοι" καὶ "δότωσαν δίκην" καὶ πάνθ' ὅσα φιλεῖ λέγειν ὄχλος ἐπ' εὐπραγίαις ἠρμένος πρὸς τοὺς ἐξευτελίζοντας ἔναγχος τοὺς τούτων αἰτίους. [82] Σαοῦλος δὲ τούτων μὲν ἠσπάζετο τὴν εὔνοιαν καὶ τὴν περὶ αὐτὸν προθυμίαν, ὤμοσε δὲ μήτινα περιόψεσθαι τῶν ὁμοφύλων ἀναιρούμενον ἐπ' ἐκείνης τῆς ἡμέρας: ἄτοπον γὰρ εἶναι τὴν ὑπὸ τοῦ θεοῦ δεδομένην νίκην αἵματι φῦραι καὶ φόνῳ τῶν πρὸς ἀλλήλους συγγενῶν ἑορτάζειν.
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077 Wishing to stir the people towards this war on the Ammanites by fear of loss and to instantly get them together, he cut the sinews of his oxen and threatened to do the same to any who did not come with their armour to the Jordan the next day and follow him and the prophet Samuel wherever they would lead. 078 So out of fear of the threatened loss they came together at the appointed time to the city of Bala, where he counted them and found that those assembled, besides that of the tribe of Judas, were seven hundred thousand, plus seventy thousand of that tribe. 079 So he crossed the Jordan and continued marching thirty furlongs all that night, and came to Jabesh before sunrise and divided the army into three companies, and suddenly attacked from every side, when the enemy were unsuspecting, and in the ensuing battle they killed many of the Ammanites, including their king Naases. 080 Saul's splendid exploit was reported with high praise to all the Hebrews, so that he won a fine reputation for bravery. Any who had earlier despised him now changed their minds and honoured him and reckoned him the best of all, for not content with having saved the Jabisenes, he invaded the region of the Ammanites and laid it all waste and returned gloriously to his own region with a large booty. 081 The people were greatly pleased at Saul's excellent deeds and were glad that they had made him king, and turned on those who had claimed he would be of no benefit to their state, saying, "Where are they now, that we may deal with them?" and the usual things that people elated with success say of people who had recently disparaged those achieved it. 082 But while Saul appreciated their goodwill and affection he vowed not to see any of his countrymen killed that day, as it was wrong to mix this victory God had given them with the blood and murder of their kinsmen, instead of feasting with each other.


[83] Σαμουήλου δὲ φήσαντος καὶ δευτέρᾳ δεῖν χειροτονίᾳ Σαούλῳ τὴν βασιλείαν ἐπικυρῶσαι συνίασι πάντες εἰς Γάλγαλα πόλιν: ἐκεῖ γὰρ αὐτοὺς ἐκέλευσεν ἐλθεῖν. καὶ πάλιν ὁρῶντος τοῦ πλήθους ὁ προφήτης χρίει τὸν Σαοῦλον τῷ ἁγίῳ ἐλαίῳ καὶ δεύτερον ἀναγορεύει βασιλέα. καὶ οὕτως ἡ τῶν Ἑβραίων πολιτεία εἰς βασιλείαν μετέπεσεν. [84] ἐπὶ γὰρ Μωυσέος καὶ τοῦ μαθητοῦ αὐτοῦ [Ἰησοῦ], ὃς ἦν στρατηγὸς, ἀριστοκρατούμενοι διετέλουν: μετὰ δὲ τὴν ἐκείνου τελευτὴν ἔτεσι τοῖς πᾶσι δέκα καὶ πρὸς τούτοις ὀκτὼ τὸ πλῆθος αὐτῶν ἀναρχία κατέσχε. [85] μετὰ ταῦτα δ' εἰς τὴν προτέραν ἐπανῆλθον πολιτείαν τῷ κατὰ πόλεμον ἀρίστῳ δόξαντι γεγενῆσθαι καὶ κατ' ἀνδρείαν περὶ τῶν ὅλων δικάζειν ἐπιτρέποντες: καὶ διὰ τοῦτο τὸν χρόνον τοῦτον τῆς πολιτείας κριτῶν ἐκάλεσαν.
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083 When Samuel had said he would confirm the kingdom to Saul by ordaining him a second time, they all came together to the city of Galgala, where he told them to meet. Once again in the sight of the people the prophet anointed Saul with the holy oil, appointing him king, and so the Hebrew polity changed into a monarchy. 084 Back in the days of Moses and his disciple their general, Joshua, they had remained an aristocracy, but after the death of Joshua, for a full eighteen years the people had been in an anarchy, 085 after which they returned to their former government, letting themselves be judged by whoever seemed to be the best and bravest warrior, which is why they called this the period of their polity that of the Judges.


[86] Ἐκκλησίαν δὲ Σαμουῆλος ποιήσας ὁ προφήτης τῶν Ἑβραίων "ἐπόμνυμαι, φησίν, ὑμῖν τὸν μέγιστον θεὸν, ὃς τοὺς ἀδελφοὺς ἐκείνους, λέγω δὴ Μωυσῆν καὶ Ἀαρῶνα, παρήγαγεν εἰς τὸν βίον καὶ τοὺς πατέρας ἡμῶν ἐξήρπασεν Αἰγυπτίων καὶ τῆς ὑπ' αὐτοῖς δουλείας, μηδὲν μήτ' αἰδοῖ χαρισαμένους μήτε ὑποστειλαμένους φόβῳ μήτε ἄλλῳ τινὶ πάθει παραχωρήσαντας εἰπεῖν, εἴ τι μοι πέπρακται σκαιὸν καὶ ἄδικον ἢ κέρδους ἕνεκα ἢ πλεονεξίας ἢ χάριτος τῆς πρὸς ἄλλους: [87] ἐλέγξαι δὲ εἰ καὶ τῶν τοιούτων τι προσηκάμην [μόσχον ἢ πρόβατον], ἃ πρὸς τροφὴν ἀνεμέσητον δοκεῖ λαμβάνειν, ἢ εἴ τινος ὑποζύγιον εἰς ἐμὴν ἀποσπάσας χρείαν ἐλύπησα, τούτων ἕν τι κατειπεῖν παρόντος ὑμῶν τοῦ βασιλέως." οἱ δὲ ἀνέκραγον τούτων οὐδὲν ὑπ' αὐτοῦ γεγονέναι, προστῆναι δὲ ὁσίως αὐτὸν καὶ δικαίως τοῦ ἔθνους.
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086 The prophet Samuel called another assembly and said to them, "I appeal to you by God Almighty, who brought into the world those excellent brothers Moses and Aaron and rescued our forefathers from the Egyptians and their slavery, please do not say anything merely to gratify me, nor suppress anything out of fear, or be swayed by any other passion, but tell me, What have I ever done that was cruel or unjust? Or what have I done for profit or covetousness, or partiality? 087 Accuse me, if I have even taken such a thing as an ox or a sheep, or anything else which may lawfully be used for food. If I have caused grief by taking any man's beast of burden for my own use, let him accuse meof it here in the presence of your king." They cried out that he had done no such thing, but had ruled the nation in holiness and justice.


[88] Σαμουῆλος δὲ ταύτης ἐξ ἁπάντων τῆς μαρτυρίας αὐτῷ γενομένης "ἐπεὶ δεδώκατέ μοι, φησί, τὸ μηδὲν ἄτοπον ἔθ' ὑμᾶς περὶ ἐμοῦ δύνασθαι λέγειν, φέρε νῦν μετὰ παρρησίας ἀκούσατέ μου λέγοντος, ὅτι μεγάλα ἠσεβήσατε εἰς τὸν θεὸν αἰτησάμενοι βασιλέα. [89] διαμνημονεύειν δὲ ὑμᾶς προσῆκεν, ὅτι σὺν ἑβδομήκοντα μόνοις ἐκ τοῦ γένους ἡμῶν ὁ πάππος Ἰάκωβος διὰ λιμὸν εἰς Αἴγυπτον ἦλθε, κἀκεῖ πολλῶν μυριάδων ἐπιτεκνωθεισῶν, ἃς εἰς δουλείας καὶ χαλεπὰς ὕβρεις ἤγαγον οἱ Αἰγύπτιοι, ὁ θεὸς εὐξαμένων τῶν πατέρων χωρὶς βασιλέως παρέσχεν αὐτοῖς ῥύσασθαι τῆς ἀνάγκης τὸ πλῆθος Μωυσῆν αὐτοῖς καὶ Ἀαρῶνα πέμψας ἀδελφοὺς, οἳ ἤγαγον ὑμᾶς εἰς τήνδε τὴν γῆν, ἣν νῦν ἔχετε. [90] καὶ τούτων ἀπολαύσαντες ἐκ τοῦ θεοῦ προδεδώκατε τὴν θρησκείαν καὶ τὴν εὐσέβειαν. οὐ μὴν ἀλλὰ καὶ τοῖς πολεμίοις ὑποχειρίους γενομένους ἠλευθέρωσε πρῶτον μὲν Ἀσσυρίων καὶ τῆς ἐκείνων ἰσχύος ὑπερτέρους ἀπεργασάμενος, ἔπειτα Ἀμμανιτῶν κρατῆσαι παρασχὼν καὶ Μωαβιτῶν καὶ τελευταίων Παλαιστίνων. καὶ ταῦτ' οὐ βασιλέως ἡγουμένου διεπράξασθε, ἀλλ' Ἰφθάε καὶ Γεδεῶνος στρατηγούντων. [91] τίς οὖν ἔσχεν ὑμᾶς ἄνοια φυγεῖν μὲν τὸν θεὸν, ὑπὸ βασιλέα δὲ εἶναι θέλειν; ἀλλ' ἐγὼ μὲν ἀπέδειξα τοῦτον ὃν αὐτὸς ἐπελέξατο, ἵνα μέντοι γε φανερὸν ποιήσω τὸν θεὸν ὀργιζόμενον καὶ δυσχεραίνοντα τῇ τῆς βασιλείας ὑμῶν αἱρέσει, δηλῶσαι τοῦθ' ὑμῖν [τὸν θεὸν] παρασκευάσω διὰ σημείων ἐναργῶς: ὃ γὰρ οὐδέπω πρότερον εἶδεν ὑμῶν οὐδεὶς ἐνταῦθα γεγενημένον, θέρους ἀκμῇ χειμῶνα, αἰτησάμενος τὸν θεὸν παρέξω τοῦτο νῦν ὑμῖν ἐπι [92] γνῶναι." καὶ ταῦτα εἰπόντος πρὸς τὸ πλῆθος τοῦ Σαμουήλου βρονταῖς σημαίνει τὸ θεῖον καὶ ἀστραπαῖς καὶ χαλάζης καταφορᾷ τὴν τοῦ προφήτου περὶ πάντων ἀλήθειαν, ὡς τεθαμβηκότας αὐτοὺς καὶ περιδεεῖς γινομένους ἁμαρτεῖν τε ὁμολογεῖν καὶ κατ' ἄγνοιαν εἰς τοῦτο προπεσεῖν, καὶ ἱκετεύειν τὸν προφήτην ὡς πατέρα χρηστὸν καὶ ἐπιεικῆ τὸν θεὸν αὐτοῖς εὐμενῆ καταστῆσαι καὶ ταύτην ἀφεῖναι τὴν ἁμαρτίαν, ἣν πρὸς οἷς ἐξύβρισαν ἄλλοις καὶ παρηνόμησαν προσεξειργάσαντο. [93] ὁ δὲ ὑπισχνεῖται καὶ παρακαλέσειν τὸν θεὸν συγγνῶναι περὶ τούτων αὐτοῖς καὶ πείσειν, συνεβούλευε μέντοι δικαίους εἶναι καὶ ἀγαθοὺς καὶ μνημονεύειν ἀεὶ τῶν διὰ τὴν παράβασιν τῆς ἀρετῆς αὐτοῖς κακῶν συμπεσόντων καὶ τῶν σημείων τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ τῆς Μωυσέος νομοθεσίας, εἰ σωτηρίας αὐτοῖς καὶ τῆς μετὰ τοῦ βασιλέως εὐδαιμονίας ἐστὶν ἐπιθυμία. [94] εἰ δὲ τούτων ἀμελήσουσιν, ἔλεγεν ἥξειν αὐτοῖς τε καὶ τῷ βασιλεῖ μεγάλην ἐκ θεοῦ πληγήν. καὶ Σαμουῆλος μὲν ταῦτα τοῖς Ἑβραίοις προφητεύσας ἀπέλυσεν αὐτοὺς ἐπὶ τὰ οἰκεῖα βεβαιώσας ἐκ δευτέρου τῷ Σαούλῳ τὴν βασιλείαν.
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088 When all had testified to this, Samuel said, "Since you grant that you cannot accuse me of any wrong up, come now and listen while I speak with great freedom. You have acted most impiously against God, in asking for a king. 089 You should have remembered how in time of a famine our grandfather Jacob sent down into Egypt with seventy souls all of our stock, and how they multiplied there to many thousands, whom the Egyptians brought into slavery and cruel bondage, and how at the prayers of our fathers, God sent the brothers Moses and Aaron and enabled them, without a king, to save the people from their plight and bring them into this land you now possess. 090 Yet after enjoying these things from God, you became traitors to worship and religion. Not only that, but he saved you when you fell into the power of your enemies, first by raising you above the might of the Assyrians and then letting you defeat the Ammanites and the Moabites, and finally the Philistines. This you achieved not under the leadership of a king, but under Jephtha and Gideon as generals. 091 What madness makes you forsake God and ask to be under a king? Yes, I did appoint for you the one that He chose, but to show you how angry and displeased God is at your choice of kingly rule, I will arange for him to show you plainly through signs. For by my prayers I will have God show you something that none of you has ever seen before, a winter storm at harvest time." 092 As Samuel said this to the crowd, the divinity indicated the truth of all the prophet had said by thunder and lightning and hailstones, so that they were amazed and terrified and confessed their sins but said it had been through ignorance, and they implored the prophet, as a tender and gentle father, to get God to mercifully forgive their sin and any other offenses or transgressions they had committed. 093 He promised to implore God to forgive them these sins and persuade him on their behalf, but warned them to be righteous and good and to always remember the evils that had befallen them for their lapses from virtue, and to remember the signs God had shown them and the legislation of Moses, if it was their wish to be safe and prosperous under their king. 094 He said that if they grew careless of these things, God would strike them and their king with a mighty blow. When Samuel had prophesied this to the Hebrews he sent them home, having confirmed the kingdom to Saul the second time.

Chapter 6. [095-130]
Saul's successful attack on the Philistines


[95] Οὗτος δ' ἐπιλέξας ἐκ τοῦ πλήθους ὡς τρισχιλίους τοὺς μὲν δισχιλίους ὥστε σωματοφυλακεῖν αὐτὸν λαβὼν αὐτὸς διέτριβεν ἐν πόλει Βεθήβῳ, Ἰωνάθῃ δὲ τῷ παιδὶ τοὺς λοιποὺς δοὺς ὥστε σωματοφυλακεῖν αὐτὸν εἰς Γεβὰλ ἔπεμψεν. ὁ δ' ἐκπολιορκεῖ τι φρούριον τῶν Παλαιστίνων οὐ πόρρω Γεβάλων. [96] οἱ γὰρ Παλαιστῖνοι καταστρεφόμενοι τοὺς Ἰουδαίους τά τε ὅπλα αὐτοὺς ἀφῃροῦντο καὶ τοὺς ὀχυρωτάτους τῆς χώρας τόπους φρουραῖς κατελαμβάνοντο καὶ σιδηροφορεῖν χρῆσθαί τε καθάπαξ ἀπηγόρευον σιδήρῳ, καὶ διὰ ταύτην τὴν πρόρρησιν οἱ γεωργοὶ, εἴποτε δεήσει' αὐτοὺς ἐπισκευάσαι τι τῶν ἐργαλείων, ἢ ὕνιν ἢ δίκελλαν ἢ ἄλλο τι τῶν εἰς γεωργίαν χρησίμων, φοιτῶντες εἰς τοὺς Παλαιστίνους ταῦτα ἔπραττον. [97] ὡς δὲ ἠκούσθη τοῖς Παλαιστίνοις ἡ τῆς φρουρᾶς ἀναίρεσις ἀγανακτήσαντες καὶ δεινὴν ὕβριν τὴν καταφρόνησιν ἡγησάμενοι στρατεύουσιν ἐπὶ τοὺς Ἰουδαίους πεζῶν μὲν τριάκοντα μυριάσιν ἅρμασι δὲ τρισμυρίοις, ἵππον δὲ ἑξακισχιλίαν ἐπήγοντο: [98] καὶ στρατοπεδευσαμένων πρὸς πόλει Μαχμὰ τοῦτο Σαοῦλος ὁ τῶν Ἰουδαίων βασιλεὺς μαθὼν εἰς Γάλγαλα καταβαίνει πόλιν καὶ διὰ πάσης κηρύσσει τῆς χώρας ἐπ' ἐλευθερίᾳ καλῶν τὸν λαὸν ἐπὶ τὸν πόλεμον τὸν πρὸς Παλαιστίνους, τὴν δύναμιν ἐκφαυλίζων αὐτῶν καὶ διασύρων ὡς οὐκ ἀξιόλογον οὐδ' ὥστε φοβεῖσθαι διακινδυνεύειν πρὸς αὐτούς. [99] κατανοήσαντες δὲ τὸ πλῆθος τῶν Παλαιστίνων οἱ τοῦ Σαούλου κατεπλάγησαν, καὶ οἱ μὲν εἰς τὰ σπήλαια καὶ τοὺς ὑπονόμους ἔκρυψαν αὑτοὺς, οἱ πλείους δὲ εἰς τὴν πέραν τοῦ Ἰορδάνου γῆν ἔφυγον: αὕτη δ' ἦν Γάδου καὶ Ῥουβήλου.
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095 From among the people he chose about three thousand men, taking two thousand of them live in as his bodyguards in the city of Bethel and giving the rest as bodyguards to his son Jonathan, whom he sent to Gebala; and he besieged and took a garrison of Philistines, not far from Gebala. 096 When the Philistines had defeated the Jews they took away their weapons and put garrisons into the strongholds of the region and forbade them tools of iron, or the use of iron for any purpose. Under this embargo, if the farmers needed to sharpen any worktool, ploughshare or spade or anything else for farming, they had to come to the Philistines for it. 097 When the Philistines heard of the destruction of their garrison they were enraged and saw it as a terrible affront, and went to war against the Jews with three hundred thousand infantry and thirty thousand chariots and six thousand horses. 098 When they had pitched camp at the city of Machma the king of the Hebrews, Saul, learned of it and went down to the city of Galgala and sent heralds all over the region in the name of liberty, calling them to war against the Philistines, whose strength he downplayed, scorning them as not so powerful or great that one need fear a war with them. 099 When Saul's entourage realised the real numbers of the Philistines, they were very afraid and some of them hid in caves and underground dens, while the majority fled to the land beyond the Jordan belonging to Gad and Rubel.


[100] Πέμψας δὲ Σαοῦλος πρὸς τὸν προφήτην ἐκάλει πρὸς αὑτὸν συνδιασκεψόμενον περὶ τοῦ πολέμου καὶ τῶν πραγμάτων. ὁ δὲ περιμένειν αὐτὸν ἐκέλευσεν αὐτόθι καὶ παρασκευάζειν θύματα: μετὰ γὰρ ἡμέρας ἑπτὰ πρὸς αὐτὸν ἥξειν, ὅπως θύσωσι τῇ ἑβδόμῃ τῶν ἡμερῶν, ἔπειθ' οὕτως συμβάλωσι τοῖς πολεμίοις. [101] καὶ περιμένει μὲν ὡς ὁ προφήτης ἐπέστειλεν, οὐκέτι μέντοι γε διατηρεῖ τὴν ἐντολήν, ἀλλ' ὡς ἑώρα βραδύνοντα μὲν τὸν προφήτην, αὑτὸν δὲ ὑπὸ τῶν στρατιωτῶν καταλειπόμενον, λαβὼν τὰ θύματα τὴν θυσίαν ἐπετέλει: ἐπεὶ δὲ τὸν Σαμουῆλον ἤκουσε προσιόντα ὑπαντησόμενος ἐξῆλθεν. [102] ὁ δ' οὐκ ὀρθῶς αὐτὸν ἔφη πεποιηκέναι παρακούσαντα ὧν ἐπέστειλεν αὐτὸς καὶ φθάσαντα τὴν παρουσίαν, ἣν κατὰ βούλησιν γινομένην τοῦ θείου πρὸς τὰς εὐχὰς καὶ τὰς θυσίας τὰς ὑπὲρ τοῦ πλήθους προλάβοι κακῶς ἱερουργήσας καὶ προπετὴς γενόμενος. [103] ἀπολογουμένου δὲ τοῦ Σαούλου καὶ περιμεῖναι μὲν τὰς ἡμέρας ἃς ὥρισε λέγοντος, ὑπὸ δὲ ἀνάγκης καὶ ἀναχωρήσεως μὲν τῶν αὑτοῦ στρατιωτῶν διὰ φόβον, στρατοπεδείας δὲ τῶν ἐχθρῶν ἐν Μαχμᾶ καὶ ἀκοῆς τῆς ἐπ' αὐτὸν εἰς Γάλγαλα καταβάσεως ἐπειχθῆναι πρὸς τὴν θυσίαν. [104] ὑπολαβὼν δὲ ὁ Σαμουῆλος "ἀλλὰ σύγε, φησίν, εἰ δίκαιος ἦσθα καὶ μὴ παρήκουσας ἐμοῦ μηδ' ὧν ὑπέθετό μοι περὶ τῶν παρόντων ὁ θεὸς ὠλιγώρησας ταχύτερος ἢ συνέφερε τοῖς πράγμασι γεγονὼς, σοί τ' αὐτῷ πλεῖστον ἂν [105] βασιλεῦσαι χρόνον ἐξεγένετο καὶ τοῖς σοῖς ἐγγόνοις." καὶ Σαμουῆλος μὲν ἀχθόμενος ἐπὶ τοῖς γεγενημένοις ἀνεχώρησε παρ' αὑτὸν, Σαοῦλος δὲ εἰς Γαβαὼν πόλιν ἔχων ἑξακοσίους μεθ' ἑαυτοῦ μόνον ἧκε σὺν Ἰωνάθῃ τῷ παιδί. τούτων δὲ οἱ πλείους οὐκ εἶχον ὅπλα τῆς χώρας σπανιζούσης σιδήρου καὶ τῶν ὅπλα χαλκεύειν δυναμένων: οὐ γὰρ εἴων οἱ Παλαιστῖνοι ταῦτα εἶναι, καθὼς μικρὸν ἔμπροσθεν δεδηλώκαμεν. [106] διελόντες δ' εἰς τρία μέρη τὴν στρατιὰν οἱ Παλαιστῖνοι καὶ κατὰ τοσαύτας ὁδοὺς ἐπερχόμενοι τὴν τῶν Ἑβραίων χώραν ἐπόρθουν, βλεπόντων τε Σαούλου τοῦ βασιλέως αὐτῶν καὶ τοῦ παιδὸς Ἰωνάθου ἀμῦναί τε τῇ γῇ, μεθ' ἑξακοσίων γὰρ μόνων ἦσαν, οὐ δυναμένων. [107] καθεζόμενοι δ' αὐτός τε καὶ ὁ παῖς αὐτοῦ καὶ ὁ ἀρχιερεὺς Ἐχίας ἀπόγονος ὢν Ἠλὶ τοῦ ἀρχιερέως ἐπὶ βουνοῦ ὑψηλοῦ καὶ τὴν γῆν λεηλατουμένην ὁρῶντες ἐν ἀγωνίᾳ δεινῇ καθεστήκεσαν. συντίθεται δὲ ὁ Σαούλου παῖς τῷ ὁπλοφόρῳ, κρύφα πορευθέντες αὐτοὶ εἰς τὴν τῶν πολεμίων παρεμβολὴν ἐκδραμεῖν καὶ ταραχὴν ἐμποιῆσαι καὶ θόρυβον [αὐτοῖς]. [108] τοῦ δὲ ὁπλοφόρου προθύμως ἕπεσθαι φήσαντος ὅποι ποτ' ἂν ἡγῆται, κἂν ἀποθανεῖν δέῃ, προσλαβὼν τὴν τοῦ νεανίσκου συνεργίαν καὶ καταβὰς ἀπὸ τοῦ βουνοῦ πρὸς τοὺς πολεμίους ἐπορεύετο. ἦν δὲ τὸ τῶν πολεμίων στρατόπεδον ἐπὶ κρημνοῦ, τρισὶν ἄκραις εἰς λεπτὸν ἀπηκονημέναις μῆκος πέτρας ἐν κύκλῳ περιστεφανούσης ὥσπερ προβόλοις τὰς ἐπιχειρήσεις ἀπομαχόμενον. [109] ἔνθεν συνέβαινεν ἠμελῆσθαι τὰς φυλακὰς τοῦ στρατοπέδου διὰ τὸ φύσει περιεῖναι τῷ χωρίῳ τὴν ἀσφάλειαν καὶ παντὶ νομίζειν ἀμήχανον εἶναι κατ' ἐκείνας οὐκ ἀναβῆναι μόνον ἀλλὰ καὶ προσελθεῖν. [110] ὡς οὖν ἧκον εἰς τὴν παρεμβολὴν ὁ Ἰωνάθης παρεθάρσυνε τὸν ὁπλοφόρον καὶ "προσβάλωμεν τοῖς πολεμίοις, ἔλεγε, κἂν μὲν ἀναβῆναι κελεύσωσι πρὸς αὑτοὺς ἡμᾶς ἰδόντες σημεῖον τοῦτο νίκης ὑπολάμβανε, ἐὰν δὲ φθέγ [111] ξωνται μηδὲν ὡς οὐ καλοῦντες ἡμᾶς ὑποστρέψωμεν." προσιόντων δὲ αὐτῶν τῷ στρατοπέδῳ τῶν πολεμίων ὑποφαινούσης ἤδη τῆς ἡμέρας ἰδόντες οἱ Παλαιστῖνοι πρὸς ἀλλήλους ἔλεγον ἐκ τῶν ὑπονόμων καὶ σπηλαίων προιέναι τοὺς Ἑβραίους, καὶ πρὸς Ἰωνάθην καὶ τὸν ὁπλοφόρον αὐτοῦ "δεῦτε, ἔφασαν, ἀνέλθετε πρὸς ἡμᾶς, ἵνα [112] ὑμᾶς τιμωρησώμεθα τῶν τετολμημένων ἀξίως." ἀσπασάμενος δὲ τὴν φωνὴν ὁ τοῦ Σαούλου παῖς ὡς νίκην αὐτῷ σημαίνουσαν παραυτίκα μὲν ἀνεχώρησαν ἐξ οὗπερ ὤφθησαν τόπου τοῖς πολεμίοις, παραμειψάμενοι δὲ τοῦτον ἐπὶ τὴν πέτραν ἧκον ἔρημον οὖσαν τῶν φυλαττόντων διὰ τὴν ὀχυρότητα. [113] κἀκεῖθεν ἀνερπύσαντες μετὰ πολλῆς ταλαιπωρίας ἐβιάσαντο τὴν τοῦ χωρίου φύσιν ἀνελθεῖν ἐπὶ τοὺς πολεμίους, ἐπιπεσόντες δ' αὐτοῖς κοιμωμένοις ἀποκτείνουσι μὲν ὡς εἴκοσι, ταραχῆς δὲ καὶ ἐκπλήξεως αὐτοὺς ἐγέμισαν, ὡς τινὰς μὲν φυγεῖν τὰς πανοπλίας ἀπορρίψαντας, [114] οἱ δὲ πολλοὶ μὴ γνωρίζοντες ἑαυτοὺς διὰ τὸ ἐκ πολλῶν ἐθνῶν εἶναι πολεμίους ὑπονοοῦντες ἀλλήλους, καὶ γὰρ εἴκαζον ἀναβῆναι πρὸς αὐτοὺς τῶν Ἑβραίων οὐ δύο μόνους, εἰς μάχην ἐτράποντο. καὶ οἱ μὲν αὐτῶν ἀπέθνησκον κτεινόμενοι, τινὲς δὲ φεύγοντες κατὰ τῶν πετρῶν ὠθούμενοι κατεκρημνίζοντο.
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100 Saul sent to call the prophet to come and confer with him about the war and public policy, and was told to wait there for him and to prepare sacrifices, for he would come to him after seven days, and on the seventh of those days he would sacrifice before going out to battle with their enemies. 101 So he waited as the prophet said but did not keep his other command, for as he saw the prophet delaying and that his soldiers were deserting, he took the sacrifices and offered them. Then hearing that Samuel had arrived, he went out to meet him. 102 The prophet said he had done wrong in disobeying the message he had sent him and not waiting until his arrival, as decreed by the divine will, but had acted too quickly in offering for the people the prayers and sacrifices he himself should have made. 103 Saul excused himself by saying that he had waited the days set by Samuel and had been forced to hurry in offering his sacrifice, as his soldiers were leaving him, fearing the enemy's camp at Machma, for a rumour had gone round that they were marching upon him at Galgala. 104 Samuel replied, "If you had been righteous and had not disobeyed me or slighted God's commands to me about this matter by acting too soon, you would have been allowed to reign a long time and your descendants after you." 105 So Samuel went home vexed by what had occurred, and Saul went with his son Jonathan to the city of Gebala with only six hundred men, most of them unarmed since iron and ironsmiths who could make weapons were scarce in that region, for as we explained a while back, the Philistines did not allow them. 106 The Philistines divided their army into three and going in three directions, ravaged the land of the Hebrews, while king Saul and his son Jonathan saw them but were unable to defend the land, having only six hundred men. 107 When he and his son and Abiah the high priest, a descendant of Eli the high priest, were sitting on a high hill watching the land being devastated, they were greatly disturbed. Then Saul's son agreed with his armour-bearer to go secretly to the enemy's camp and create commotion and uproar among them. 108 When the armour-bearer readily promised to follow wherever he should lead, even if he must die in the attempt, Jonathan and the young man descended from the hill and went toward the enemy. The enemy camp was on a clifftop with three peaks, ending in a long and narrow tip, with a crags around them like defence lines to prevent any attempted attack. 109 The nature of the place was so secure that the guarding of the camp was neglected, as they thought it impossible to ascend to the camp from that side, or even to approach it. 110 When they reached the camp, Jonathan encouraged his armour-bearer, "Let us attack the enemy" he said, "and if, when they see us, they bid us come up to them, take that for a sign of victory, but if they say nothing and do not call us to come up, let us turn back." 111 As they were approaching the enemy camp just after daybreak, the Philistines saw it and said to each other, "The Hebrews are coming from their dens and caves." To Jonathan and to his armour-bearer they said, "Come on up to us, and we will teach you a good lesson for this rash venture." 112 Saul's son accepted the call as a sign of victory and instantly left the place where they were seen by their enemies and relocated to the cliff where there was nobody on guard because of its strength. 113 From there, with great difficulty given the nature of the place, they toiled their way up until they got within reach of the enemy. Then they attacked them during their sleep and killed about twenty of them, causing great disorder and alarm. Some threw away all their armour and fled, 114 but most of them, being of different nations and never dreaming that only two of the Hebrews had climbed up to them, mistook each other for the enemy and fought it out, so that some were killed and others in their flight fell down headlong from the cliff.


[115] Τῶν δὲ τοῦ Σαούλου κατασκόπων τεταράχθαι τὸ στρατόπεδον τῶν Παλαιστίνων φρασάντων τῷ βασιλεῖ Σαοῦλος ἠρώτα, μή τις εἴη τῶν αὑτοῦ κεχωρισμένος. ἀκούσας δὲ τὸν υἱὸν καὶ σὺν αὐτῷ τὸν ὁπλοφόρον ἀπεῖναι κελεύει τὸν ἀρχιερέα λαβόντα τὴν ἀρχιερατικὴν στολὴν προφητεύειν αὐτῷ περὶ τῶν μελλόντων. τοῦ δὲ νίκην ἔσεσθαι καὶ κράτος κατὰ τῶν πολεμίων φράσαντος ἐπεξέρχεται τοῖς Παλαιστίνοις καὶ τεταραγμένοις προσβάλλει καὶ φονεύουσιν ἀλλήλους. [116] προσρέουσι δὲ αὐτῷ καὶ οἱ πρότερον εἴς τε τοὺς ὑπονόμους καὶ εἰς τὰ σπήλαια συμφυγόντες ἀκούσαντες ὅτι νικᾷ Σαοῦλος: γενομένων δὲ ὡς μυρίων ἤδη τῶν Ἑβραίων διώκει τοὺς πολεμίους κατὰ πᾶσαν ἐσκορπισμένους τὴν χώραν. εἴτε δὲ ὑπὸ τῆς ἐπὶ τῇ νίκῃ χαρᾶς οὕτω παραλόγως γενομένῃ, συμβαίνει γὰρ μὴ κρατεῖν τοῦ λογισμοῦ τοὺς οὕτως εὐτυχήσαντας, εἴθ' ὑπὸ ἀγνοίας εἰς δεινὸν προπίπτει καὶ πολλὴν ἔχον κατάμεμψιν ἔργον: [117] βουλόμενος γὰρ αὑτῷ τε τιμωρῆσαι καὶ δίκην ἀπολαβεῖν παρὰ τῶν Παλαιστίνων ἐπαρᾶται τοῖς Ἑβραίοις, ἵν' εἴ τις ἀποσχόμενος τοῦ φονεύειν τοὺς ἐχθροὺς φάγοι καὶ μὴ μέχρι νὺξ ἐπελθοῦσα τῆς ἀναιρέσεως καὶ τῆς διώξεως αὐτοὺς παύσει τῶν πολεμίων, οὗτος ἐπάρατος ᾖ. [118] τοῦ δὲ Σαούλου τοῦτο φήσαντος, ἐπεὶ κατά τινα δρυμὸν ἐγένοντο βαθὺν καὶ μελισσῶν γέμοντα τῆς Ἐφράμου κληρουχίας, ὁ τοῦ Σαούλου παῖς οὐκ ἐπακηκοὼς τῆς τοῦ πατρὸς ἀρᾶς οὐδὲ τῆς ἐπ' αὐτῇ τοῦ πλήθους ὁμολογίας ἀποθλίψας τι κηρίον τοῦ μέλιτος ἤσθιε. [119] μεταξὺ δὲ γνοὺς, ὅτι μετὰ δεινῆς ἀρᾶς ὁ πατὴρ ἀπεῖπε μὴ γεύσασθαί τινα πρὸ ἡλίου δυσμῶν, ἐσθίων μὲν ἐπαύσατο, ἔφη δὲ οὐκ ὀρθῶς κωλῦσαι τὸν πατέρα: μετὰ μείζονος γὰρ ἰσχύος ἂν καὶ προθυμίας διώκοντας, εἰ τροφῆς μετελάμβανον, πολλῷ πλείονας τῶν ἐχθρῶν καὶ λαβεῖν καὶ φονεῦσαι.
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115 When Saul's spies reported to their king that the camp of the Philistines was in a panic, Saul enquired if anyone had left the army and heard that his son was missing along with his armour-bearer, he ordered the high priest to put on his priestly vestments and prophesy to him what the outcome would be. As he said it would be victory and triumph over their enemies, he went out against the Philistines and attacked them as they were in confusion and killing each other. 116 On hearing that Saul was winning, those who had fled to the dens and caves came running to his help. When about ten thousand Hebrews showed up he pursued the enemy who were scattered all over the region. But then, whether from ignorance or from the joy of so surprising a victory, for people often fail to think clearly after a stroke of good fortune, he did something terrible and very blameworthy. 117 In his eagerness to take revenge and punish the Philistines, he invoked a curse upon the Hebrews if anyone stopped to eat and ceased killing the enemy or broke off the pursuit before nightfall made them do so. 118 When Saul had said this, when they reached a wood belonging to the tribe of Ephraim which was thick and full of bees, Saul's son, who did not hear his father make the curse, or hear the people confirming it, broke off part of a honeycomb and ate it. 119 Soon he learned of his father's curse forbidding them to taste anything before sunset, and stopped eating but said that his father's embargo was not good, for if they had taken along some food they would have pursued the enemy with more vigour and force and captured and killed many more of them.


[120] Πολλὰς γοῦν κατακόψαντες μυριάδας τῶν Παλαιστίνων δείλης ὀψίας ἐπὶ διαρπαγὴν τοῦ στρατοπέδου τῶν Παλαιστίνων τρέπονται, καὶ λείαν πολλὴν καὶ βοσκήματα λαβόντες κατασφάζουσι καὶ ταῦτ' ἔναιμα κατήσθιον. ἀπαγγέλλεται δὲ τῷ βασιλεῖ ὑπὸ τῶν γραμματέων, ὅτι τὸ πλῆθος εἰς τὸν θεὸν ἐξαμαρτάνει θῦσαν καὶ πρὶν ἢ τὸ αἷμα καλῶς ἀποπλῦναι καὶ τὰς σάρκας ποιῆσαι καθαρὰς ἐσθίον. [121] καὶ Σαοῦλος κελεύει κυλισθῆναι λίθον μέγαν εἰς μέσον καὶ κηρύσσει θύειν ἐπ' αὐτοῦ τὸν ὄχλον τὰ ἱερεῖα καὶ τὰ κρέα μὴ σὺν τῷ αἵματι δαίνυσθαι: τοῦτο γὰρ οὐκ εἶναι τῷ θεῷ κεχαρισμένον. τοῦτο δὲ πάντων κατὰ τὴν πρόσταξιν τοῦ βασιλέως ποιησάντων ἵστησιν ἐκεῖ βωμὸν ὁ Σαοῦλος καὶ ὡλοκαύτωσεν ἐπ' αὐτοῦ ἐκεῖ τῷ θεῷ. τοῦτον πρῶτον βωμὸν κατεσκεύασεν.
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120 Still they cut off many thousands of the Philistines, and late in the evening set to despoiling the Philistine camp, taking a large amount of booty and livestock which they killed and ate along with their blood. The scribes reported to the king how the people were sinning against God in their sacrifices and were eating before the blood was well washed off and the meat had been purified. 121 Then Saul had a great stone rolled into the middle and proclaimed that the crowd should sacrifice upon it and not eat the flesh along with the blood, as this was not pleasing to God. When all did as the king directed, Saul raised an altar there and offered holocausts to God there. This was the first altar built by Saul.


[122] Ἄγειν δ' εὐθὺς τὴν στρατιὰν ἐπὶ τὴν παρεμβολὴν τῶν πολεμίων ἐπὶ τὴν διαρπαγὴν τῶν ἐν αὐτῇ βουλόμενος πρὶν ἡμέρας καὶ τῶν στρατιωτῶν οὐκ ὀκνούντων ἕπεσθαι, πολλὴν δ' εἰς ἃ προστάττει προθυμίαν ἐνδεικνυμένων, καλέσας ὁ βασιλεὺς Ἀχίτωβον τὸν ἀρχιερέα κελεύει αὐτὸν γνῶναι, εἰ δίδωσιν αὐτοῖς ὁ θεὸς καὶ συγχωρεῖ βαδίσασιν ἐπὶ τὸ στρατόπεδον τῶν ἐχθρῶν διαφθεῖραι τοὺς ἐν αὐτῷ τυγχάνοντας. [123] εἰπόντος δὲ τοῦ ἱερέως μὴ ἀποκρίνεσθαι τὸν θεόν "ἀλλ' οὐ δίχα αἰτίας, εἶπεν ὁ Σαοῦλος, πυνθανομένοις ἡμῖν φωνὴν οὐ δίδωσιν ὁ θεὸς, ὃς πρότερον αὐτὸς προεμήνυσε πάντα καὶ μηδ' ἐπερωτῶσιν ἔφθασε λέγων, ἀλλ' ἔστι τι λανθάνον ἐξ ἡμῶν ἁμάρτημα πρὸς αὐτὸν αἴτιον τῆς σιωπῆς. [124] καὶ ὄμνυμί γε τοῦτον αὐτὸν, ἦ μὴν κἂν ὁ παῖς ὁ ἐμὸς Ἰωνάθης ᾖ τὸ ἁμάρτημα τοῦτο ἐργασάμενος ἀποκτείνειν αὐτὸν καὶ τὸν θεὸν οὕτως ἱλάσασθαι, ὡς ἂν εἰ καὶ παρ' ἀλλοτρίου καὶ μηδὲν ἐμοὶ [125] προσήκοντος τὴν ὑπὲρ αὐτοῦ δίκην ἀπελάμβανον." τοῦ δὲ πλήθους τοῦτο ποιεῖν ἐπιβοήσαντος παραχρῆμα πάντας ἵστησιν εἰς ἕνα τόπον, ἵσταται δὲ καὶ αὐτὸς σὺν τῷ παιδὶ κατ' ἄλλο μέρος καὶ κλήρῳ τὸν ἡμαρτηκότα μαθεῖν ἐπεζήτει: καὶ λαγχάνει δοκεῖν οὗτος εἶναι Ἰωνάθης. [126] ἐπερωτώμενος δὲ ὑπὸ τοῦ πατρὸς τί πεπλημμέληκε καὶ τί παρὰ τὸν βίον οὐκ ὀρθῶς οὐδὲ ὁσίως αὑτῷ διαπραξαμένῳ συνέγνωκε "πάτερ, εἶπεν, ἄλλο μὲν οὐδὲν, ὅτι δὲ χθὲς ἀγνοῶν τὴν ἀρὰν αὐτοῦ καὶ τὸν ὅρκον μεταξὺ διώκων τοὺς πολεμίους ἐγεύσατο κηρίων. Σαοῦλος δ' ἀποκτείνειν αὐτὸν ὄμνυσι καὶ τῆς γενέσεως καὶ τῆς φύσεως τῶν φίλτρων ἐτίμησε τὸν ὅρκον. [127] ὁ δ' οὐ καταπλήττεται τὴν ἀπειλὴν τοῦ θανάτου, παραστησάμενος δ' εὐγενῶς καὶ μεγαλοφρόνως "οὐδ' ἐγώ σε, φησίν, ἱκετεύσω φείσασθαί μου, πάτερ, ἥδιστος δέ μοι ὁ θάνατος ὑπέρ τε τῆς σῆς εὐσεβείας γινόμενος καὶ ἐπὶ νίκῃ λαμπρᾷ: μέγιστον γὰρ παραμύ [128] θιον τὸ καταλιπεῖν Ἑβραίους Παλαιστίνων κεκρατηκότας." ἐπὶ τούτοις ὁ λαὸς πᾶς ἤλγησε καὶ συνέπαθεν ὤμοσέ τε μὴ περιόψεσθαι τὸν αἴτιον τῆς νίκης Ἰωνάθην ἀποθανόντα. καὶ τὸν μὲν οὕτως ἐξαρπάζουσι τῆς τοῦ πατρὸς ἀρᾶς, αὐτοὶ δὲ εὐχὰς ὑπὲρ τοῦ νεανίσκου ποιοῦνται τῷ θεῷ ὥστε αὐτὸν ἀπολῦσαι τοῦ ἁμαρτήματος.
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122 Before daylight Saul wished to lead his men into the enemy camp to loot it and the soldiers were not unwilling but were eager to do as he directed, the king called Ahitob the high priest and told him to find out if God would grant and allow them to go to the enemy camp, and destroy anyone they found in it. 123 When the priest said that God gave no answer, Saul replied, "Not without cause does God refuse to answer our queries, whereas a short while ago he told us in advance whatever we wanted to know. It must be some sin against him that is hidden from us, which is causing this silence. 124 I swear by him that even if the sinner should prove to be my own son Jonathan, I will kill him and so make atonement to God, just as if I were punishing a stranger not related to me, to avenge him." 125 When the populace shouted to him to do so, he put them all on one side and he and his son stood on the other side and he sought to find out the offender by lot; but the lot seemed to point to Jonathan. 126 When his father asked where he had erred and what guilt or profanity he was aware of in the course of his life, he replied, "Nothing father, except that yesterday while in pursuit of the enemy, I tasted of a honeycomb, not knowing of the curse and oath you had sworn." Saul then swore to kill him setting the keeping of his oath above the bonds of fatherhood and of nature. 127 Not appalled at the threat of death, the lad nobly and generously offered himself and said, "I do not ask you, father, to spare me. Death will be very acceptable to me if it comes from your piety and for a glorious victory, for it is the greatest consolation to me to leave the Hebrews victors over the Philistines." 128 At this all the people were full of sorrow and sympathy, and swore that they would not let Jonathan the cause of their victory be killed. So they rescued him from the danger of his father's curse, and prayed to God to forgive the young man's sin.


[129] Καὶ ὁ Σαοῦλος εἰς τὴν ἑαυτοῦ πόλιν ὑπέστρεψε διαφθείρας ὡσεὶ μυριάδας ἓξ τῶν πολεμίων. βασιλεύει δὲ εὐτυχῶς, καὶ τὰ πλησιόχωρα τῶν ἐθνῶν πολεμήσας χειροῦται τό τε Ἀμμανιτῶν καὶ Μωαβιτῶν Παλαιστίνους Ἰδουμαίους [Ἀμαληκίτας τε] καὶ τὸν βασιλέα τῆς Σωβᾶς. ἦσαν δὲ παῖδες αὐτῷ τρεῖς μὲν ἄρσενες Ἰωνάθης καὶ Ἰησοῦς καὶ Μέλχισος, θυγατέρες δὲ Μερόβη καὶ Μιχαάλ. [130] στρατηγὸν δὲ εἶχε τὸν τοῦ θείου παῖδα Ἀβήναρον: Νῆρος δ' ἐκεῖνος ἐκαλεῖτο, Νῆρος δὲ καὶ Κεὶς ὁ Σαούλου πατὴρ ἀδελφοὶ ἦσαν, υἱοὶ δ' Ἀβελίου. ἦν δὲ καὶ πλῆθος ἁρμάτων Σαούλῳ καὶ ἱππέων, οἷς δὲ πολεμήσειε νικήσας ἀπηλλάσσετο, καὶ τοὺς Ἑβραίους εἰς εὐπραγίας καὶ μέγεθος εὐδαιμονίας προηγάγετο καὶ τῶν ἄλλων ἀπέδειξεν ἐθνῶν δυνατωτέρους, καὶ τῶν νέων τοὺς δὴ καὶ μεγέθει καὶ κάλλει διαφέροντας φύλακας τοῦ σώματος ἐποιεῖτο.
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129 So having killed about sixty thousand of the enemy, Saul returned to his own city and ruled successfully and fought the neighbouring nations and subdued the Ammanites and Moabites and Philistines and Edomites and Amalekites, and the king of Zobah. He had three male children, Jonathan and Joshua and Melchis, and two daughters, Merob and Melcha. 130 He had also Abner, the son of his uncle Ner, as general of his army, for Ner and Saul's father Kish were brothers. Saul had also many chariots and cavalry and whenever he made war he returned victorious and brought the Hebrews to success and prosperity, raising them above other nations, and took for his bodyguards any of the young men who were of notable size and beauty.

Chapter 7. [131-155]
Saul is told to wipe out the Amalekites


[131] Σαμουῆλος δὲ παραγενόμενος πρὸς τὸν Σαοῦλον πεμφθῆναι πρὸς αὐτὸν ἔφασκεν ὑπὸ τοῦ θεοῦ, ὅπως αὐτὸν ὑπομνήσῃ, ὅτι βασιλέα προκρίνας αὐτὸν ἁπάντων ὁ θεὸς ἀπέδειξε, καὶ διὰ τοῦτο πείθεσθαι καὶ κατήκοον αὐτῷ γενέσθαι ὡς αὐτοῦ μὲν ἔχοντος τὴν τῶν ἐθνῶν ἡγεμονίαν, τοῦ δὲ θεοῦ καὶ τὴν κατ' ἐκείνου καὶ τῶν ὅλων πραγμάτων. [132] λέγειν τοίνυν ἔφασκε τὸν θεὸν: "ἐπεὶ πολλὰ κακὰ τοὺς Ἑβραίους Ἀμαληκῖται διέθηκαν κατὰ τὴν ἔρημον, ὅτε ἐξελθόντες ἀπ' Αἰγύπτου εἰς τὴν νῦν ὑπάρχουσαν αὐτοῖς ἐστέλλοντο χώραν, κελεύω πολέμῳ τιμωρησάμενον τοὺς Ἀμαληκίτας καὶ κρατήσαντα μηδέν' αὐτῶν ὑπολιπεῖν, [133] ἀλλὰ πάσης διεξελθεῖν ἡλικίας ἀρξαμένους ἀπὸ γυναικῶν κτείνειν καὶ νηπίων καὶ τοιαύτην ὑπὲρ ὧν τοὺς προγόνους ὑμῶν εἰργάσαντο τιμωρίαν ἀπολαβεῖν, φείσασθαι δὲ μήτε ὑποζυγίων μήτε τῶν ἄλλων βοσκημάτων εἰς ὠφέλειαν καὶ κτῆσιν ἰδίαν, ἅπαντα δ' ἀναθεῖναι τῷ θεῷ καὶ τὸ Ἀμαλήκου ὄνομα ταῖς Μωυσέος κατακολουθήσαντ' ἐντολαῖς ἐξαλεῖψαι.
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131 Samuel came to Saul and told him that he was sent to remind him how God had preferred him before all others and ordained him king; that he must therefore defer to and obey him, since while he ruled over the other tribes, God still ruled over him and over all things. 132 He said that God's directions were "Since the Amalekites did the Hebrews much harm while they were in the wilderness in their flight from Egypt while journeying to the land that is now their own, I command you to punish the Amalekites with war. When you have subdued them, leave none of them alive, 133 but pursue them young and old and kill them, beginning with the women and the infants, for they must be punished for what they did to our ancestors. So spare nothing, whether beasts of burden or other cattle, and do not keep any of them for your own use and possession, but sacrifice them all to God, and blot out the name of Amalek entirely, as Moses commanded."


[134] Ὁμολογεῖ δὲ ποιήσειν Σαοῦλος τὰ προστασσόμενα, τὴν δὲ πειθαρχίαν τὴν πρὸς τὸν θεὸν οὐκ ἐν τῷ ποιήσασθαι τὴν πρὸς τοὺς Ἀμαληκίτας στρατείαν λογιζόμενος εἶναι μόνον, ἀλλὰ καὶ τὴν ἑτοιμότητα καὶ τὸ τάχος ἀναβολῆς οὐ προσούσης ἔτι μᾶλλον ἐμφανίζει, ἀθροίζει τε πᾶσαν τὴν δύναμιν καὶ ταύτην ἐξαριθμήσας ἐν Γαλγάλοις εὑρίσκει τῶν Ἰσραηλιτῶν ἔξω τῆς Ἰούδα φυλῆς περὶ τεσσαράκοντα μυριάδας: ἥδε γὰρ ἡ φυλὴ καθ' αὑτήν ἐστι στρατιῶται τρισμύριοι. [135] Σαοῦλος δ' ἐμβαλὼν εἰς τὴν τῶν Ἀμαληκιτῶν χώραν ἐνέδρας πολλὰς καὶ λόχους περὶ τὸν χειμάρρουν τίθησιν, ὡς μὴ μόνον ἐκ τοῦ φανεροῦ μαχομένους αὐτοὺς κακῶς ποιεῖν, ἀλλὰ καὶ μὴ προσδοκῶσι κατὰ τὰς ὁδοὺς ἐπιπίπτειν καὶ κυκλουμένους ἀναιρεῖν: καὶ δὴ συμβαλὼν αὐτοῖς εἰς μάχην τρέπεται τοὺς πολεμίους καὶ διαφθείρει πάντας φεύγουσιν ἐπακολουθῶν. [136] ὡς δ' ἐκεῖνο τὸ ἔργον αὐτῷ κατὰ τὴν τοῦ θεοῦ προφητείαν ἐχώρησε, ταῖς πόλεσι τῶν Ἀμαληκιτῶν προσέβαλε καὶ τὰς μὲν μηχανήμασι, τὰς δὲ ὀρύγμασιν ὑπονόμοις καὶ τείχεσιν ἔξωθεν ἀντῳκοδομημένοις, τὰς δὲ λιμῷ καὶ δίψει, τὰς δὲ ἄλλοις τρόποις ἐκπολιορκήσας καὶ λαβὼν κατὰ κράτος ἐπὶ σφαγὴν γυναικῶν καὶ νηπίων ἐχώρησεν, οὐδὲν ὠμὸν οὐδ' ἀνθρωπίνης σκληρότερον διαπράσσεσθαι φύσεως ἡγούμενος, πρῶτον μὲν πολεμίους ταῦτα δρῶν, ἔπειτα προστάγματι θεοῦ, ᾧ τὸ μὴ πείθεσθαι κίνδυνον ἔφερε. [137] λαμβάνει δὲ καὶ τὸν βασιλέα τῶν ἐχθρῶν Ἄγαγον αἰχμάλωτον, οὗ θαυμάσας τὸ κάλλος καὶ τὸ μέγεθος τοῦ σώματος σωτηρίας ἄξιον ἔκρινεν οὐκέτι τοῦτο ποιῶν κατὰ βούλησιν τοῦ θεοῦ, πάθει δὲ νικώμενος ἰδίῳ καὶ χαριζόμενος ἀκαίρως περὶ ὧν οὐκ εἶχεν ἀκίνδυνον ἐξουσίαν οἴκτῳ. [138] ὁ μὲν γὰρ θεὸς οὕτως ἐμίσησε τὸ τῶν Ἀμαληκιτῶν ἔθνος, ὡς μηδὲ νηπίων φείσασθαι κελεῦσαι πρὸς ἃ μᾶλλον ἔλεος γίνεσθαι πέφυκε, Σαοῦλος δὲ αὐτῶν τὸν βασιλέα καὶ τὸν ἡγεμόνα τῶν εἰς Ἑβραίους κακῶν ἔσωσε τῆς μνήμης ὧν ἐπέστειλεν ὁ θεὸς τὸ τοῦ πολεμίου κάλλος ἐπίπροσθεν ποιησάμενος. [139] συνεξήμαρτε δ' αὐτῷ καὶ τὸ πλῆθος: καὶ γὰρ ἐκεῖνοι τῶν ὑποζυγίων καὶ τῶν βοσκημάτων ἐφείσαντο καὶ διήρπασαν μὴ τηρεῖν αὐτὰ τοῦ θεοῦ κελεύσαντος τά τε ἄλλα χρήματα καὶ τὸν πλοῦτον ἐξεφόρησαν, εἰ δέ τι μὴ σπουδῆς ἦν ἄξιον ὥστε κεκτῆσθαι διέφθειραν.
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134 So Saul promised to do as he was ordered, and thinking that his obedience to God would be shown not just by making war on the Amalekites, but more fully by promptness and speed, he made no delay but instantly gathered all his forces, and after counting them in Galgala, he found them to be about four hundred thousand of the Israelites besides the tribe of Judas, and by itself that tribe contained thirty thousand. 135 Saul then invaded the region of the Amalekites and set many men in several parties in ambush at the river, so as not only to trounce them in open battle but also to attack them unexpectedly on the highway and thereby encircle and kill them. He fought and defeated the enemy and pursuing them as they fled, killed them all. 136 When that had succeeded as God had foretold, he attacked the cities of the Amalekites. He besieged them and took them by force, partly by war- machines, partly by mines dug underground and partly by building walls around them; and some they defeated by hunger and thirst and some they besieged in other ways. Having taken them by force he proceeded to kill the women and children, thinking that in this he was acting neither cruelly or inhumanly; first, because those he was dealing with were enemies, and also because it was done by God's command, whom it was dangerous not to obey. 137 He also captured the enemy king, Agag, whose beauty and size he admired so much that he thought him worth sparing. This, however, was not according to God's will, but giving way to human feeling and allowing himself to be moved with an untimely pity which was not safe for him to indulge. 138 For God hated the nation of the Amalekites so much that he ordered Saul not to pity even the infants, for whom by nature we feel most sympathy, but Saul spared their king and ruler from the ruin the Hebrews inflicted on his people, as though preferring the fine appearance of the enemy to the purpose for which God had sent him. 139 The populace was guilty along with him, for they spared the herds and the flocks and took them as booty, when God had ordered them not to spare them. They also carried off the rest of their wealth, destroying only what was worthless.


[140] Νικήσας δὲ Σαοῦλος ἅπαντας τοὺς ἀπὸ Πηλουσίου τῆς Αἰγύπτου καθήκοντας ἕως τῆς Ἐρυθρᾶς θαλάσσης διέφθειρε πολεμίους παραλιπὼν τὸ τῶν Σικιμιτῶν ἔθνος: οὗτοι γὰρ ἐν τῇ Μαδιηνῇ χώρᾳ μέσοι κατῴκηνται. πρὸ δὲ τῆς μάχης πέμψας παρήγγειλεν αὐτοῖς ἀναχωρεῖν, μὴ τοῖς Ἀμαληκίταις κοινωνήσωσι συμφορᾶς: συγγενεῖς γὰρ αὐτοὺς ὄντας Ῥαγουήλου τοῦ Μωυσέος πενθεροῦ σώζειν αἰτίαν ἔχειν.
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140 When Saul had conquered all these Amalekites from Pelusium in Egypt to the Red Sea, he ravaged all the rest of the enemy's region. But he did not touch the nation of the Sikimites, although they lived in the heart of the region of Madian, for before the battle Saul had sent to tell them to leave there in case they should share in the ruin of the Amalekites. He had a good reason to spare them, as they were related to Raguel, Moses's father-in-law.


[141] Καὶ Σαοῦλος μὲν ὡς μηδενὸς παρακούσας ὧν ὁ προφήτης ἐπέστειλε μέλλοντι τὸν πρὸς Ἀμαληκίτας ἐκφέρειν πόλεμον, ἀλλ' ὡς ἐπὶ πᾶσιν ἐκείνοις ἀκριβῶς πεφυλαγμένοις νενικηκὼς τοὺς πολεμίους οἴκαδε πρὸς αὑτὸν ὑπέστρεψε χαίρων ἐπὶ τοῖς κατωρθωμένοις. [142] ὁ δὲ θεὸς ἄχθεται τῇ τε τοῦ βασιλέως τῶν Ἀμαληκιτῶν σωτηρίᾳ καὶ τῇ τῶν βοσκημάτων διαρπαγῇ τοῦ πλήθους, ὅτι μὴ συγχωρήσαντος αὐτοῦ ταῦτ' ἐπράχθη: δεινὸν γὰρ ἡγεῖτο νικᾶν μὲν καὶ περιγίνεσθαι τῶν ἐχθρῶν ἐκείνου τὴν ἰσχὺν διδόντος αὐτοῖς, καταφρονεῖσθαι δὲ καὶ παρακούεσθαι μηδὲ ὡς ἄνθρωπον βασιλέα. [143] μετανοεῖν οὖν ἔλεγε πρὸς τὸν προφήτην Σαμουῆλον ἐπὶ τῷ χειροτονῆσαι βασιλέα τὸν Σαοῦλον μηδὲν ὧν αὐτὸς κελεύει πράττοντα, τῇ δ' οἰκείᾳ βουλήσει χρώμενον. σφόδρα ταῦτ' ἀκούσας ὁ Σαμουῆλος συνεχύθη καὶ δι' ὅλης τῆς νυκτὸς παρακαλεῖν ἤρξατο τὸν θεὸν καταλλάττεσθαι τῷ Σαούλῳ καὶ μὴ χαλεπαίνειν. [144] ὁ δὲ τὴν συγγνώμην οὐκ ἐπένευσεν εἰς τὸν Σαοῦλον αἰτουμένῳ τῷ προφήτῃ λογισάμενος οὐκ εἶναι δίκαιον ἁμαρτήματα χαρίζεσθαι παραιτήσει: οὐ γὰρ ἐξ ἄλλου τινὸς φύεσθαι μᾶλλον ἢ τοῦ μαλακίζεσθαι τοὺς ἀδικουμένους: θηρωμένους γὰρ δόξαν ἐπιεικείας καὶ χρηστότητος λανθάνειν αὐτοὺς ταῦτα γεννῶντας. [145] ὡς οὖν ἀπεῖπεν ὁ θεὸς τῇ τοῦ προφήτου δεήσει καὶ δῆλοςἦν μεταμελόμενος, ἅμ' ἡμέρᾳ Σαμουῆλος εἰς Γάλγαλα παραγίνεται πρὸς Σαοῦλον: θεασάμενος δ' αὐτὸν ὁ βασιλεὺς προστρέχει καὶ κατασπασάμενος "τῷ θεῷ, φησίν, εὐχαριστῶ δόντι μοι τὴν νίκην, ἅπαντα [146] μέντοι γε τὰ κελευσθέντα ὑπ' αὐτοῦ πέπρακται." Σαμουῆλος δὲ πρὸς τοῦθ' ὑπολαβὼν "πόθεν οὖν ἀκούω θρεμμάτων, εἶπε, καὶ ὑποζυγίων βοῆς ἐν τῷ στρατοπέδῳ;" ὁ δὲ τὸν λαὸν ταῦτ' εἰς θυσίας ἀπεκρίνατο τετηρηκέναι: τὸ μέντοι γε τῶν Ἀμαληκιτῶν γένος πᾶν ἐξηφανίσθαι κατὰ τὴν ἐντολὴν καὶ περιλείπεσθαι ἄλλον μηδένα, πρὸς δ' αὐτὸν ἀγαγεῖν μόνον τηρήσαντα αὐτῶν τὸν βασιλέα, περὶ οὗ τί δεῖ ποιεῖν βουλεύσεσθαι πρὸς ἀλλήλους ἔφασκεν. [147] ὁ δὲ προφήτης οὐχὶ θυσίαις ἔλεγεν ἥδεσθαι τὸ θεῖον, ἀλλὰ τοῖς ἀγαθοῖς καὶ δικαίοις. οὗτοι δέ εἰσιν οἱ τῇ βουλήσει καὶ ταῖς ἐντολαῖς αὐτοῦ κατακολουθοῦντες καὶ μηδὲν ἄλλο πραχθήσεσθαι καλῶς ὑφ' ἑαυτῶν νομίζοντες ἢ ὅτι ἂν ποιήσωσι τοῦ θεοῦ κεκελευκότος: καταφρονεῖσθαι γὰρ οὐχ ὅταν αὐτῷ μὴ θύῃ τις, ἀλλ' ὅταν ἀπειθεῖν δοκῇ. [148] παρὰ δὲ τῶν οὐχ ὑποτασσομένων οὐδ' ἀληθῆ καὶ μόνην τῷ θεῷ κεχαρισμένην θρησκευόντων θρησκείαν, οὔτ' ἂν πολλὰ καὶ πιμελῆ καταθύσωσιν ἱερεῖα, οὔτ' ἂν κόσμον ἀναθημάτων ἐξ ἀργύρου καὶ χρυσοῦ πεποιημένων προσφέρωσι, δέχεται ταῦτ' εὐμενῶς, ἀλλ' ἀποστρέφεται καὶ δείγματα τῆς πονηρίας οὐκ εὐσέβειαν ἡγεῖται. [149] τοῖς δ' ἓν καὶ μόνον τοῦθ' ὅτι περ ἂν φθέγξηται καὶ κελεύσῃ ὁ θεὸς διὰ μνήμης ἔχουσι καὶ τεθνάναι μᾶλλον ἢ παραβῆναί τι τούτων αἱρουμένοις ἐπιτέρπεται, καὶ οὔτε θυσίαν ἐπιζητεῖ παρ' αὐτῶν καὶ παρὰ θυόντων δὲ, κἂν ᾖ λιτά, τῆς πενίας ἥδιον τὴν τιμὴν ἢ παρὰ τῶν πλουσιωτάτων δεξιοῦται. [150] σὺ τοίνυν ἴσθι σαυτὸν δι' ὀργῆς ὄντα τῷ θεῷ: κατεφρόνησας γὰρ καὶ κατημέλησας ὧν ἐπέστειλε. πῶς οὖν οἴει τὴν θυσίαν ἂν αὐτὸν προσβλέπειν ἐξ ὧν κατέκρινεν ἀπολέσθαι γινομένην; πλὴν εἰ μὴ νομίζεις ὅμοιον ὄλεθρον τὸ θύεσθαι ταῦτα τῷ θεῷ. προσδόκα τοίνυν τὴν βασιλείαν ἀφαιρεθησόμενος καὶ τὴν ἐξουσίαν, ἀφ' ἧς [151] ὁρμώμενος τοῦ παρασχόντος σοι θεοῦ ταύτην ἠμέλησας." Σαοῦλος δὲ ἀδικεῖν ὡμολόγει καὶ τὴν ἁμαρτίαν οὐκ ἠρνεῖτο: παραβῆναι γὰρ τὰς ἐντολὰς τοῦ προφήτου: κατὰ μέντοι γε δέος καὶ τὸν ἀπὸ τῶν στρατιωτῶν φόβον μὴ κωλῦσαι διαρπάζοντας αὐτοὺς τὴν λείαν μηδ' ἐπισχεῖν. ἀλλὰ συγγίνωσκε καὶ πρᾷος ἴσθι: φυλάξεσθαι γὰρ εἰς τοὐπιὸν ἁμαρτεῖν, παρεκάλει δὲ τὸν προφήτην ὑποστρέψαντα θυσίας χαριστηρίους ἐπιτελέσαι τῷ θεῷ: ὁ δὲ, οὐ γὰρ ἑώρα τὸν θεὸν διαλλαττόμενον, ἀπῄει πρὸς ἑαυτόν.
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141 At this Saul returned home with joy, for his glorious exploits and for defeating his enemies, as if he had not neglected anything the prophet had told him to do when he was going to war on the Amalekites and as if he had done exactly all that he should have done. 142 But God was grieved that the king of the Amalekites was spared alive and that the people had taken the livestock as booty, for these things were done without his permission. He thought it intolerable for them to conquer their enemies by the power he gave them and then so grossly scorn and disobey him, which even a mere mortal king would not endure. 143 So he told the prophet Samuel that he regretted having made Saul king since he did not obey him but followed his own inclinations. Samuel was distraught when he heard it and all that night implored God to forgive Saul and not to be angry with him, 144 but even at the prophet's request he did not pardon Saul, not seeing fit to forgive sins at his petition, since wrongs increase if those who are wronged are lenient, and if they seek to appear gentle and kindly, before they know it, other sins have flourished. 145 When God rejected the prophet's intercession and it was clear he would not change his mind, at break of day Samuel met Saul at Galgala. Seeing him, the king ran and embraced him and said, "I thank God, who gave me victory, for I have done everything he has commanded me." 146 Samuel replied, "Then how is it that I can hear the bleating of the sheep and the lowing of the livestock in the camp?" Saul replied that the people had reserved them for sacrifices, but that the Amalekite nation was entirely destroyed as he had been ordered, and that nobody except their king was left alive. He had brought him to him, so that they could discuss what to do with him. 147 But the prophet said, "God does not delight in sacrifices, but in good and righteous men who follow his will and his laws and never think something is well done unless they do it as God directs them. He is offended not by failure to sacrifice, but by a person's disobeying him. 148 From those who do not obey him in the spirit of true and acceptable worship, he will not accept sacrifices, no matter how covered in fat, or gifts no matter how ornamental. Even if made of gold and silver, he will reject them and reckon them objects of evil and not of piety. 149 He delights in those who remember this one thing, to do whatever God says or tells them to do, preferring to die than to break any of those commands, and from he demands no sacrifice. When these do sacrifice, no matter how small their offering, he accepts it more from their poverty than the offerings of the richest men who sacrifice to him. 150 Be aware, therefore, that you are under the wrath of God, for you have despised and neglected what he ordered you. How do you think he will accept a sacrifice from things he has doomed to destruction? Do you imagine that offering a sacrifice to God is the same as to destroy it. Therefore your kingdom and the authority you have abused by disobeying the God who gave it to you, will be taken from you." 151 Saul confessed that he had acted wrongly and did not deny his sin, for breaking the prophet's orders. He said that it was from fear of the soldiers that he did not stop them from capturing the booty. "But forgive me," he said, "and be merciful to me, for I will be careful not to offend in the future." He implored the prophet to return with him so that he could offer his thank-offerings to God, but Samuel went home, knowing that God would not pardon him.


[152] Σαοῦλος δὲ κατασχεῖν βουλόμενος τὸν Σαμουῆλον ἐλλαμβάνεται τῆς διπλοίδος καὶ βιαίας τῆς ὁλκῆς διὰ τὸ μεθ' ὁρμῆς ἀπιέναι τὸν Σαμουῆλον γενομένης διασχίζει τὸ ἱμάτιον. [153] τοῦ δὲ προφήτου τὴν βασιλείαν οὕτως [αὐτοῦ] διασχισθῆναι φήσαντος καὶ λήψεσθαι ταύτην ἀγαθὸν καὶ δίκαιον, ἐμμένειν γὰρ τὸν θεὸν τοῖς περὶ αὐτοῦ κεκριμένοις ὡς τοῦ μεταβάλλεσθαι καὶ στρέφειν τὴν γνώμην ἀνθρωπίνου πάθους ὄντος οὐχὶ θείας ἰσχύος, [154] ὁ Σαοῦλος ἀσεβῆσαι μὲν ἔλεγεν, ἀγένητα δὲ ποιῆσαι τὰ πεπραγμένα μὴ δύνασθαι: τιμῆσαί γε μὴν αὐτὸν παρεκάλει τοῦ πλήθους ὁρῶντος σὺν αὐτῷ παραγενόμενον τὸν θεὸν προσκυνῆσαι. δίδωσι δὲ τοῦτο Σαμουῆλος αὐτῷ καὶ συνελθὼν προσκυνεῖ τῷ θεῷ. [155] ἄγεται δὲ καὶ ὁ τῶν Ἀμαληκιτῶν βασιλεὺς Ἄγαγος πρὸς αὐτόν: καὶ πυνθανομένου, πῶς εἴη πικρὸς ὁ θάνατος, εἶπεν "ὡς σὺ πολλὰς μητέρας Ἑβραίων ἐπὶ τέκνοις ὀδύρεσθαι καὶ πένθος ἄγειν ἐποίησας, οὕτως ὀδυνήσεις ἐπὶ σαυτῷ διαφθαρέντι τὴν μητέρα." καὶ κελεύει παραχρῆμα αὐτὸν ἐν Γαλγάλοις ἀποθανεῖν. καὶ αὐτὸς δὲ εἰς Ἅρμαθον πόλιν ἀπαλλάσσεται.
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152 Wanting to detain Samuel, Saul took hold of his cloak, and because Samuel set off with such a vigorous stride, the cloak was torn. 153 The prophet said that the kingdom would be torn from him in the same way and be given to a good and upright man. For God held to what he had decreed about him, since to change one's decisions is typical of human passions, but is not the way of divine power. 154 Saul said that he had done wrong, but that what was done could not be undone. All he asked was that he show him the honour of letting the people see them worshipping God together, so Samuel granted him that favour and went with him to worship God. 155 When Agag, king of the Amalekites, was brought to him, the king said, "How bitter is death?" Samuel replied, "As you have made many Hebrew mothers mourn and bewail the loss of their children, so by your death, you will cause your mother to mourn you too." He instantly gave orders to kill him at Galgala and then went off to the city of Armatha.

Chapter 8. [156-169]
The prophet Samuel anoints David as king, to replace Saul


[156] Σαοῦλος δὲ ὁ βασιλεὺς αἰσθόμενος ὧν πειραθείη κακῶν ἐχθρὸν αὑτῷ τὸν θεὸν κατασκευάσας, εἰς τὸ βασίλειον ἀναβαίνει Γαβᾶ, σημαίνει βουνὸν ἑρμηνευόμενον τὸ ὄνομα, καὶ μετ' ἐκείνην οὐκέτι τὴν ἡμέραν εἰς ὄψιν ἔρχεται τῷ προφήτῃ. [157] Σαμουήλῳ δὲ λυπουμένῳ περὶ αὐτοῦ παύσασθαι μὲν τῆς φροντίδος ἐκέλευσεν ὁ θεός, λαβόντι δὲ τὸ ἅγιον ἔλαιον εἰς Βηθλέμην ἀπελθεῖν πόλιν πρὸς Ἰεσσαῖον παῖδα Ὠβήδου καὶ χρῖσαι τῶν υἱῶν αὐτοῦ ὃν ἂν αὐτὸς ἐπιδείξῃ βασιλέα γενησόμενον. ὁ δὲ εὐλαβεῖσθαι φήσας, μὴ τοῦτο μαθὼν Σαοῦλος ἀνέλῃ λοχήσας αὐτὸν ἢ καὶ φανερῶς, ὑποθεμένου τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ δόντος ἀσφαλείας ὁδὸν ἧκεν εἰς τὴν προειρημένην πόλιν. [158] καὶ πάντες αὐτὸν ἠσπάζοντό τε καὶ τὴν αἰτίαν τῆς ἀφίξεως ἀνηρώτων, ἔλεγε δὲ ἥκειν ἵνα θύσῃ τῷ θεῷ. ποιήσας οὖν τὴν θυσίαν καλεῖ τὸν Ἰεσσαῖον μετὰ τῶν τέκνων ἐπὶ τὰ ἱερὰ καὶ θεασάμενος αὐτοῦ τὸν πρεσβύτατον υἱὸν εὐμεγέθη καὶ καλὸν εἴκασεν ἐκ τῆς εὐμορφίας τοῦτον εἶναι τὸν μέλλοντα βασιλεύειν. [159] διαμαρτάνει δὲ τῆς τοῦ θεοῦ προνοίας: ἐπερωτήσαντι γὰρ αὐτὸν, εἰ χρίσει τῷ ἐλαίῳ τὸν νεανίσκον, ὃν αὐτός τε θαυμάζει καὶ τῆς βασιλείας ἄξιον ἔκρινεν, οὐ τὰ αὐτὰ βλέπειν ἀνθρώπους εἶπε καὶ θεόν: [160] ἀλλὰ σὺ μὲν εἰς τὸ κάλλος ἀπιδὼν τοῦ νεανίσκου καὶ δὴ τοῦτον ἡγῇ ἄξιον τοῦ βασιλεύειν εἶναι, ἐγὼ δ' οὐ σωμάτων εὐμορφίας ἔπαθλον ποιοῦμαι τὴν βασιλείαν ἀλλὰ ψυχῶν ἀρετῆς καὶ ζητῶ ὅστις ταύτης ἐστὶ τελέως εὐπρεπὴς, εὐσεβείᾳ καὶ δικαιοσύνῃ καὶ ἀνδρείᾳ καὶ πειθοῖ ἐξ ὧν τὸ [161] τῆς ψυχῆς συνίσταται κάλλος κατακεκοσμημένος." ταῦτα φράσαντος τοῦ θεοῦ πάντας ἐκέλευσεν αὐτῷ τὸν Ἰεσσαῖον τοὺς υἱοὺς ἐπιδεῖξαι Σαμουῆλος: ὁ δὲ πέντε ἄλλους ἐποίησεν ἐλθεῖν, ὧν ὁ μὲν πρεσβύτερος Ταλίαβος, ὁ δεύτερος Ἀμινάδαβος, Σάμαλος ὁ τρίτος, ὁ τέταρτος Ναθαναῆλος, καὶ Ῥάηλος ὁ πέμπτος ἐκαλεῖτο, ὁ δὲ ἕκτος Ἄσαμος. [162] ἰδὼν δὲ καὶ τούτους ὁ προφήτης μηδὲν χείρους τοῦ πρεσβυτέρου ταῖς μορφαῖς ἐπηρώτησε τὸν θεὸν, τίνα τούτων αἱρεῖται βασιλέα. εἰπόντος δ' οὐδένα πυνθάνεται τοῦ Ἰεσσαίου, μὴ πρὸς τούτοις αὐτῷ καὶ ἄλλοι παῖδές εἰσι. [163] φήσαντος δὲ εἶναι Δαβίδην τοὔνομα, ποιμαίνειν δὲ καὶ τῆς τῶν βοσκημάτων φυλακῆς ἐπιμελεῖσθαι κελεύει καλεῖν αὐτὸν ἐν τάχει: κατακλιθῆναι γὰρ εἰς εὐωχίαν οὐκ εἶναι δυνατὸν αὐτοῖς ἐκείνου μὴ παρόντος. [164] ὡς δ' ἧκεν ὁ Δαβίδης μεταπεμφθεὶς ὑπὸ τοῦ πατρὸς, παῖς ξανθὸς μὲν τὴν χρόαν γοργὸς δὲ τὰς ὄψεις καὶ καλὸς ἄλλως "οὗτός ἐστιν, εἰπὼν ἡσυχῇ πρὸς αὑτὸν Σαμουῆλος, ὁ βασιλεύειν ἀρέσας τῷ θεῷ" κατακλίνεται μὲν αὐτός, κατακλίνει δ' ὑφ' αὑτὸν τὸν νεανίσκον καὶ τὸν Ἰεσσαῖον μετὰ καὶ τῶν παίδων. [165] ἔπειτα λαβὼν ὁρῶντος τοῦ Δαβίδου τὸ ἔλαιον ἀλείφει τ' αὐτὸν καὶ πρὸς τὸ οὖς ἠρέμα λαλεῖ καὶ σημαίνει τοῦθ', ὅτι βασιλεύειν αὐτὸν ὁ θεὸς ᾕρηται, παρῄνει δ' εἶναι δίκαιον καὶ κατήκοον αὐτοῦ τῶν προσταγμάτων: οὕτως γὰρ αὐτῷ παραμενεῖν τὴν βασιλείαν εἰς πολὺν χρόνον καὶ τὸν οἶκον λαμπρὸν καὶ περιβόητον γενήσεσθαι, καταστρέψεσθαι δὲ καὶ Παλαιστίνους, καὶ οἷς ἂν ἔθνεσι πολεμῇ νικῶντα καὶ περιόντα τῇ μάχῃ κλέος ἀοίδιμον ζῶντά τε ἕξειν καὶ τοῖς μετ' αὐτὸν ἀπολείψειν.
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156 Aware of the plight he had brought on himself and feeling at odds with God, king Saul went up to his palace at Gaba, which means a hill, and from that day no longer came into the presence of the prophet. 157 When Samuel grieved for him, God told him set aside this anguish and take the holy oil and go to Bethlehem, to Jesse, son of Obed, and anoint as their future king the one of his sons He would show him. Samuel said he was afraid that if he learned of it, Saul would kill him secretly or even openly. But he went to the aforesaid city, with the help of God brought him safely there. 158 When they all greeted him and asked about the reason for his coming, he said he came to sacrifice to God. After preparing the sacrifice, he called Jesse and his sons to share in it, and when he saw that his eldest son was a tall and handsome man, he guessed by his beauty that he was the one to be their future king. 159 But he misinterpreted God's providence, for when Samuel asked God if he should anoint this youth whom he admired and thought worthy of the kingship, God said, "Men do not see as God sees. 160 You admire this youth for his fine looks and so think him worthy to reign, while I give the kingship as a reward not for physical beauty but for spiritual virtue, and seek one perfect in beauty of that kind, in piety and righteousness and fortitude and obedience, for in these the beauty of the soul consists." 161 When God had said this, Samuel got Jesse to show him all his sons. So he had five more of his sons come to him. Eliab was the eldest, Aminadab the second, Shammall the third, Nathaniel the fourth, Rael the fifth and Asam the sixth. 162 When the prophet saw that these appeared no way inferior to the eldest, he asked God which of them whom he chose for their king, but God said it was none of them, so he asked Jesse if he had not some other sons besides these. 163 When he said he had one more, called David, but that he was out herding and guarding the flocks, he quickly had him called, saying that they could not sit down to the feast until he arrived. 164 When David came, sent for by his father, he was of a tan complexion, keen sighted and handsome in every way. "This is the one," Samuel said quietly, "whom it pleases God to make our king." So he set the boy next to him and then Jesse and his other sons. 165 Later, in David's sight he took oil and anointed him and whispered in his ear to say that God had chosen him to reign, and urged him to be just and to obey to his commandments. In this way his kingdom would last a long time and his house would be glorious and renowned. He said that he would destroy the Philistines and whenever he went to war against other nations he would survive the battle and be victorious, and enjoy celebrity throughout his life, and leave it behind to his descendants.


[166] Καὶ Σαμουῆλος μὲν ἀπαλλάσσεται ταῦτα παραινέσας, πρὸς δὲ τὸν Δαβίδην μεταβαίνει τὸ θεῖον καταλιπὸν Σαοῦλον. καὶ ὁ μὲν προφητεύειν ἤρξατο τοῦ θείου πνεύματος εἰς αὐτὸν μετοικισαμένου, τὸν Σαοῦλον δὲ περιήρχετο πάθη τινὰ καὶ δαιμόνια πνιγμοὺς αὐτῷ καὶ στραγγάλας ἐπιφέροντα, ὡς τοὺς ἰατροὺς ἄλλην μὲν αὐτῷ θεραπείαν μὴ ἐπινοεῖν, εἰ δέ τίς ἐστιν ἐξᾴδειν δυνάμενος καὶ ψάλλειν ἐπὶ κινύρᾳ τοῦτον ἐκέλευσαν ζητήσαντας, ὁπόταν αὐτῷ προσίῃ τὰ δαιμόνια καὶ ταράττῃ, ποιεῖν ὑπὲρ κεφαλῆς στάντα ψάλλειν τε καὶ τοὺς ὕμνους ἐπιλέγειν. [167] ὁ δὲ οὐκ ἠμέλησεν, ἀλλὰ ζητεῖσθαι προσέταξε τοιοῦτον ἄνθρωπον: φήσαντος δέ τινος αὐτῷ τῶν παρόντων ἐν Βηθλεέμῃ πόλει τεθεᾶσθαι Ἰεσσαίου μὲν υἱὸν, ἔτι [δὲ] παῖδα τὴν ἡλικίαν, εὐπρεπῆ δὲ καὶ καλὸν τά τε ἄλλα σπουδῆς ἄξιον καὶ δὴ καὶ ψάλλειν εἰδότα καὶ ᾄδειν ὕμνους καὶ πολεμιστὴν ἄκρον, πέμψας πρὸς τὸν Ἰεσσαῖον ἐκέλευσεν ἀποστέλλειν αὐτῷ τὸν Δαβίδην τῶν ποιμνίων ἀποσπάσαντα: βούλεσθαι γὰρ αὐτὸν ἰδεῖν περὶ τῆς εὐμορφίας καὶ τῆς ἀνδρείας ἀκούσας τοῦ νεανίσκου. [168] ὁ δὲ Ἰεσσαῖος πέμπει τὸν υἱὸν καὶ ξένια δοὺς κομίσαι τῷ Σαούλῳ. ἐλθόντι δὲ ἥσθη καὶ ποιήσας ὁπλοφόρον διὰ πάσης ἦγε τιμῆς: ἐξῄδετο γὰρ ὑπ' αὐτοῦ καὶ πρὸς τὴν ἀπὸ τῶν δαιμονίων ταραχήν, ὁπότε αὐτῷ ταῦτα προσέλθοι, μόνος ἰατρὸς ἦν λέγων τε τοὺς ὕμνους καὶ ψάλλων ἐν τῇ κινύρᾳ καὶ ποιῶν ἑαυτοῦ γίνεσθαι τὸν Σαοῦλον. [169] πέμπει τοίνυν πρὸς τὸν πατέρα τοῦ παιδὸς Ἰεσσαῖον ἐᾶσαι παρ' αὐτῷ τὸν Δαβίδην κελεύων: ἥδεσθαι γὰρ αὐτῷ βλεπομένῳ καὶ παρόντι: τὸν δ' οὐκ ἀντειπεῖν τῷ Σαούλῳ, συγχωρῆσαι δὲ κατέχειν.
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166 With this advice, Samuel left him and the divine power left Saul and moved to David, who began to prophesy when the divine Spirit moved to him. But some devilish disorder came over Saul, making him feel suffocated and ready to choke, and his doctors could think of no other remedy than to seek someone who could sing and play the harp. Then when the demons disturbed him he could have that person stand over him, making music and singing. 167 Without delay he told them to seek out such a one, and a bystander said that in the city of Bethlehem he had seen a son of Jesse, still no more than a child, but handsome and fair and fine in every way, who was skilled in playing the harp and in singing songs, and would be an excellent soldier in war. So he sent to Jesse and told him to have David leave the flocks and send him to him, for he wished to see him after hearing praise of the young man's beauty and bravery. 168 So Jesse sent his son and gave him gifts to take to Saul. When he came he was pleased with him and made him his armour-bearer and held him in high esteem, for he was charmed by him and whenever he was troubled when the demons assailed him, was his only doctor, singing and playing the harp and bringing Saul back to his right mind. 169 He sent to Jesse, the boy's father, to let David stay with him, as he was delighted with the sight of him and having his company. In order not to oppose Saul, he granted this request.

Chapter 9. [170-192]
David kills Goliath the Philistine, in single combat


[170] Χρόνοις δ' ὕστερον οὐ πολλοῖς οἱ Παλαιστῖνοι πάλιν συνελθόντες καὶ δύναμιν ἀθροίσαντες μεγάλην ἐπίασι τοῖς Ἰσραηλίταις καὶ μεταξὺ Σωκοῦς καὶ Ἀζηκοῦς καταλαμβανόμενοι στρατοπεδεύονται. ἀντεπεξάγει δ' αὐτοῖς τὴν στρατιὰν καὶ Σαοῦλος καὶ ἐπί τινος ὄρους στρατοπεδευσάμενος ἀναγκάζει τοὺς Παλαιστίνους τὸ μὲν πρῶτον στρατόπεδον καταλιπεῖν, ὁμοίως δ' ἐπί τινος ὄρους ἀντικρὺ τοῦ καταληφθέντος ὑπὸ τοῦ Σαούλου στρατοπεδεύσασθαι. [171] διίστη δ' ἀπ' ἀλλήλων τὰ στρατόπεδα μέσος αὐλὼν τῶν ὀρῶν ἐφ' ὧν ἦν. καταβὰς οὖν τις τῶν ἐκ τοῦ Παλαιστίνων στρατοπέδου Γολιάθης ὄνομα: πόλεως δὲ Γίττης ἀνὴρ παμμεγεθέστατος: ἦν γὰρ πηχῶν τεσσάρων καὶ σπιθαμῆς ὅπλα τῇ φύσει τοῦ σώματος ἀναλογοῦντα περικείμενος: θώρακα μὲν γὰρ ἐνεδέδυτο σταθμὸν ἄγοντα πέντε χιλιάδας σίκλων, κόρυθα δὲ καὶ κνημῖδας χαλκέας ὁποίας εἰκὸς ἦν ἀνδρὸς οὕτω παραδόξου τὸ μέγεθος σκεπάσαι μέρη, δόρυ δὲ ἦν οὐ κοῦφον βάσταγμα δεξιᾶς, ἀλλ' ἐπὶ τῶν ὤμων αὐτὸ αἴρων ἔφερεν, εἶχε δὲ καὶ λόγχην ἑξακοσίων σίκλων, εἵποντο δὲ πολλοὶ βαστάζοντες τὰ ὅπλα: [172] στὰς τοίνυν ὁ Γολίαθος οὗτος μεταξὺ τῶν παρατάξεων βοήν τε ἀφίησι μεγάλην καὶ πρὸς τὸν Σαοῦλον καὶ τοὺς Ἑβραίους λέγει: "μάχης μὲν ὑμᾶς καὶ κινδύνων ἀπαλλάττω: τίς γὰρ ἀνάγκη τὴν στρατιὰν ἡμῶν συμπεσοῦσαν κακοπαθεῖν; [173] δότε δ' ὅστις ἐμοὶ μαχεῖται τῶν ὑμετέρων, καὶ βραβευθήσεται τὰ τοῦ πολέμου ἑνὶ τῷ νενικηκότι: δουλεύσουσι γὰρ ἐκεῖνοι τοῖς ἑτέροις, ὧν ἂν ὁ νικήσας γένηται: πολὺ δὲ κρεῖττον εἶναι καὶ σωφρονέστατον ἑνὸς κινδύνῳ λαβεῖν ὃ βούλεσθε ἢ τῷ [174] ἁπάντων." ταῦτ' εἰπὼν ἀνεχώρησεν εἰς τὸ τῶν οἰκείων στρατόπεδον. τῇ δ' ἐχομένῃ πάλιν ἐλθὼν τοὺς αὐτοὺς ἐποιήσατο λόγους, καὶ μέχρι τεσσαράκοντα ἡμερῶν οὐ διέλειπε προκαλούμενος ἐπὶ τοῖς προειρημένοις τοὺς πολεμίους, ὡς καταπλαγῆναι αὐτόν τε τὸν Σαοῦλον καὶ τὴν στρατιάν. καὶ παρετάσσοντο μὲν ὡς εἰς μάχην, οὐκ ἤρχοντο δὲ εἰς χεῖρας.
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170 Not long after this, the Philistines again gathered a large force against the Israelites, and seized a place between Socus and Azekus, where they encamped. Saul led out his army to oppose them, and by pitching his own camp on a particular hill, forced the Philistines to leave their first encampment and move to another hill, across from Saul's camp. 171 Their two camps were separated by a valley, in between the hills on which they lay. Down from the camp of the Philistines came a man named Goliath, from the city of Gitta, a man of vast size. He was four cubits and a span tall and had about him weapons suited to his physique. His breastplate weighed five thousand shekels and his helmet and greaves of brass made to protect the limbs of so large a man. His spear was not light enough to carry in his right hand, but was carried on his shoulders; and he had a lance that weighed six hundred shekels, and many men followed carrying his armour. 172 As this Goliath stood between the opposing armies he shouted aloud to Saul and the Hebrews, "I will spare you from battle and its dangers, for what need is there for your army to fall and to suffer? 173 Give me one of your men who will fight me and as his prize the victor shall decide the war, and the others shall serve the side to which the victor belongs. Surely it is better and more prudent to gain your aims by risking one man rather than everyone." 174 After saying this he retired to his own camp, but came again the next day and used the same words. Over a period of forty days he did not cease challenging the enemy in the same words, until Saul and his army were dismayed by it, while they put themselves in array as though to fight, but did not actually come to battle.


[175] Τοῦ δὲ πολέμου συνεστηκότος τοῖς Ἑβραίοις καὶ τοῖς Παλαιστίνοις Σαοῦλος ἀπέλυσε τὸν Δαβίδην πρὸς τὸν πατέρα Ἰεσσαῖον ἀρκούμενος αὐτοῦ τοῖς τρισὶν υἱοῖς, οὓς ἐπὶ συμμαχίαν καὶ τοὺς κινδύνους ἔπεμψεν. [176] ὁ δὲ τὸ μὲν πρῶτον ἐπὶ τὰ ποίμνια πάλιν καὶ τὰς νομὰς τῶν βοσκημάτων παραγίνεται, μετ' οὐ πολὺ δὲ ἔρχεται εἰς τὸ στρατόπεδον τῶν Ἑβραίων πεμφθεὶς ὑπὸ τοῦ πατρὸς κομίσαι τε τοῖς ἀδελφοῖς ἐφόδια καὶ γνῶναι τί πράττουσι. [177] τοῦ δὲ Γολιάθου πάλιν ἐλθόντος καὶ προκαλουμένου καὶ ὀνειδίζοντος, ὅτι μηδείς ἐστιν ἀνδρεῖος ἐν αὐτοῖς, ὃς εἰς μάχην αὐτῷ τολμᾷ καταβῆναι, μεταξὺ τοῖς ἀδελφοῖς ὁμιλῶν Δαβίδης περὶ ὧν ἐπέστειλεν ὁ πατὴρ ἀκούσας βλασφημοῦντος τὴν στρατιὰν καὶ κακίζοντος τοῦ Παλαιστίνου ἠγανάκτησε καὶ πρὸς τοὺς ἀδελφοὺς αὐτοῦ εἶπεν ἑτοίμως ἔχειν μονομαχῆσαι τῷ πολεμίῳ. [178] πρὸς τοῦθ' ὁ πρεσβύτατος τῶν ἀδελφῶν Ἰάναβος ἐπέπληξεν αὐτῷ τολμηρότερον παρ' ἡλικίαν καὶ ἀμαθῆ τοῦ προσήκοντος εἰπών, ἐκέλευσέ τε πρὸς τὰ ποίμνια καὶ τὸν πατέρα βαδίζειν. καταιδεσθεὶς δὲ τὸν ἀδελφὸν ὑπεχώρησε καὶ πρός τινας τῶν στρατιωτῶν ἀπελάλησεν, ὅτι θέλοι μάχεσθαι τῷ προκαλουμένῳ. [179] δηλωσάντων δ' εὐθὺς τῷ Σαούλῳ τὴν τοῦ νεανίσκου προαίρεσιν μεταπέμπεται αὐτὸν ὁ βασιλεύς, καὶ πυθομένου τί βούλεται λέγειν "μὴ ταπεινὸν ἔστω τὸ φρόνημα μηδ' εὐλαβὲς, ὦ βασιλεῦ: καθαιρήσω γὰρ ἐγὼ τὴν ἀλαζονείαν τοῦ πολεμίου χωρήσας αὐτῷ διὰ μάχης καὶ τὸν ὑψηλὸν καὶ μέγαν ὑπ' ἐμαυτῷ βαλών. [180] γένοιτο μὲν ἂν αὐτὸς οὕτως καταγέλαστος, ἔνδοξον δὲ τὸ σὸν στράτευμα, εἰ μηδ' ὑπ' ἀνδρὸς πολεμεῖν ἤδη δυναμένου καὶ πιστευομένου παράταξιν καὶ μάχας, ἀλλ' ὑπὸ παιδὸς ἔτι δοκοῦντος καὶ ταύτην ἔχοντος τὴν ἡλικίαν ἀποθάνοι."
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175 At the start of this war between the Hebrews and the Philistines, Saul sent away David to his father Jesse and contented himself with the three sons he had sent to help him and share in the dangers of the war. 176 At first David returned to feed his sheep and flocks, but after a while he was sent by his father to the camp of the Hebrews to take food to his brothers and learn how they were doing. 177 When Goliath came again and challenged and mocked them for having among them no man brave enough to come down and fight him. Meanwhile David was talking with his brothers about the business he was sent for by his father, and he heard the Philistine taunting the army and was angry and said to his brothers, "I am ready to fight this enemy in single combat." 178 His eldest brother, Eliab, reproached him for speaking rashly and unwisely for one so young and told him go back to his flocks and his father. So abashed at his brother's words he went away, but still said to some of the soldiers that he wanted to fight the man who challenged them. 179 When they told Saul of the young man's courage, the king sent for him to come to him and when he asked him he replied, "O king, do not be downcast or afraid, for I will curb the insolence of the enemy by going to fight him and bring him down, tall and great as he is. 180 Let him be a laughing stock and your army will have great glory when he is killed by one who is not yet of man's estate, or fit for fighting, or ready to be entrusted with leading an army, or planning a battle, but by one who looks like a child and really is one in age."


[181] Τοῦ δὲ Σαούλου τὸ μὲν τολμηρὸν αὐτοῦ καὶ τὴν εὐψυχίαν θαυμάζοντος, οὐ θαρροῦντος δὲ ἐπ' αὐτῷ διὰ τὴν ἡλικίαν, ἀλλ' ἀσθενέστερον εἶναι διὰ ταύτην πρὸς εἰδότα πολεμεῖν μάχεσθαι λέγοντος, "ταῦτ', εἶπε Δαβίδης, ἐπαγγέλλομαι τῷ θεῷ θαρρῶν ὄντι μετ' ἐμοῦ: πεπείραμαι γὰρ αὐτοῦ τῆς βοηθείας. [182] λέοντα γὰρ ἐπελθόντα μού ποτε τοῖς ποιμνίοις καὶ ἁρπάσαντα ἄρνα διώξας καταλαμβάνω καὶ τὸν μὲν ἄρνα τοῦ στόματος ἐξαρπάζω τοῦ θηρὸς, αὐτὸν δ' ὁρμήσαντα ἐπ' ἐμὲ τῆς οὐρᾶς βαστάσας καὶ προσρήξας τῇ γῇ διαφθείρω. [183] ταὐτὸ δὲ καὶ ἄρκον ἀμυνόμενος διατίθεμαι. νομιζέσθω δὴ καὶ ὁ πολέμιος ἐκείνων εἶναι τῶν θηρίων ὀνειδίζων ἐκ πολλοῦ τὴν στρατιὰν καὶ βλασφημῶν ἡμῶν τὸν θεὸν, ὃς αὐτὸν ὑποχείριον ἐμοὶ θήσει."
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181 Saul was amazed at David's audacity and commitment but dared not rely on him at his age, thinking that he must be too puny to fight a man skilled in war. "But," said David, "I undertake this task trusting in the God who is with me, since I have felt his help already. 182 For I once pursued and caught a lion that was attacking my flocks and had taken a lamb, and I snatched the lamb from the beast's mouth and when it sprang at me I took it by the tail and dashed it to the ground. 183 When defending myself against a bear I did the same, so let our opponent be seen as one of these wild beasts, and he who has for so long mocked our army and blasphemed our God, will be brought by him under my power."


[184] Τῇ προθυμίᾳ τοιγαροῦν καὶ τῇ τόλμῃ τοῦ παιδὸς ὅμοιον γενέσθαι τέλος παρὰ τοῦ θεοῦ Σαοῦλος εὐξάμενος "ἄπιθι, φησί πρὸς τὴν μάχην." καὶ περιθεὶς αὐτῷ τὸν αὑτοῦ θώρακα καὶ περιζώσας τὸ ξίφος καὶ περικεφαλαίαν ἁρμόσας ἐξέπεμψεν. [185] ὁ δὲ Δαβίδης βαρυνόμενος ὑπὸ τῶν ὅπλων, οὐκ ἐγεγύμναστο γὰρ οὐδ' ἐμεμαθήκει φέρειν ὅπλα, "ταῦτα μέν, εἶπεν, ὦ βασιλεῦ, σὸς ἔστω κόσμος τοῦ βαστάζειν δυναμένου, συγχώρησον δὲ ὡς δούλῳ σου καὶ ὡς ἐγὼ βούλομαι μαχεσθῆναι." τίθησιν οὖν τὰ ὅπλα καὶ τὴν βακτηρίαν ἀράμενος καὶ πέντε λίθους ἐκ τοῦ χειμάρρου βαλὼν εἰς τὴν πήραν τὴν ποιμενικὴν καὶ σφενδόνην ἐν τῇ δεξιᾷ χειρὶ φέρων ἐπὶ τὸν Γολίαθον ἐπορεύετο. [186] καταφρονεῖ δὲ οὕτως ἰδὼν αὐτὸν ὁ πολέμιος ἐρχόμενον καὶ προσέσκωψεν, ὡς οὐχ οἷα πρὸς ἄνθρωπον ὅπλα νενόμισται ταῦτ' ἔχων μέλλοι μάχεσθαι, οἷς δὲ κύνας ἀπελαύνομεν καὶ φυλασσόμεθα. μὴ αὐτὸν ἀντὶ ἀνθρώπου κύνα εἶναι δοκεῖ; ὁ δ' οὐχὶ τοιοῦτον ἀλλὰ καὶ χείρω κυνὸς αὐτὸν νομίζειν ἀπεκρίνατο. κινεῖ δὲ πρὸς ὀργὴν τὸν Γολίαθον, καὶ ἀρὰς αὐτῷ τίθεται ἐκ τῆς προσηγορίας τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ δώσειν ἠπείλησε τὰς σάρκας αὐτοῦ τοῖς ἐπιγείοις καὶ τοῖς μεταρσίοις διασπάσασθαι: [187] ἀμείβεται δ' αὐτὸν ὁ Δαβίδης: "σὺ μὲν ἐπέρχῃ μοι ἐν ῥομφαίᾳ καὶ δόρατι καὶ θώρακι, ἐγὼ δὲ χωρῶν ἐπὶ σὲ τὸν θεὸν ὥπλισμαι, ὃς σέ τε καὶ πᾶσαν ὑμῶν στρατιὰν χερσὶ ταῖς ἡμετέραις διολέσει. καρατομήσω μὲν γάρ σε σήμερον καὶ τὸ ἄλλο σῶμα τοῖς ὁμοφύλοις κυσὶ παραβαλῶ, μαθήσονται δὲ πάντες, ὅτι προέστηκεν Ἑβραίων τὸ θεῖον καὶ ὅπλα ἡμῖν καὶ ἰσχὺς τοῦτ' ἔστι κηδόμενον, ἡ δ' ἄλλη παρασκευὴ καὶ δύναμις ἀνωφελὴς θεοῦ μὴ παρόντος." [188] ὁ δὲ Παλαιστῖνος ὑπὸ βάρους τῶν ὅπλων εἰς ὠκύτητα καὶ δρόμον ἐμποδιζόμενος βάδην ἐπὶ τὸν Δαβίδην παραγίνεται καταφρονῶν καὶ πεποιθὼς γυμνὸν ὁμοῦ καὶ παῖδα ἔτι τὴν ἡλικίαν ἀπόνως ἀναιρήσειν.
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184 Saul prayed that with God's help the result might not go against the boy's commitment and boldness, and said, "Go on to the fight." So putting his own breastplate around him and his sword into his belt and fitting his helmet on his head he sent him off. 185 But David felt burdened by the armour, for he had not been trained to it, nor had he learned to bear arms, so he said, "Keep this armour for yourself, O king, who are able to bear it, but let me fight as your servant and as I myself wish." So he laid aside the armour and taking his staff with him and putting five stones from the brook into a shepherd's bag and with a sling in his right hand, he went towards Goliath. 186 But seeing him come in such a fashion the enemy scorned and jibed at him for not having the usual weapons of a man going out to fight, but those that are used for driving away and warding off dogs. He said, "Do you take me not for a man, but a dog?" To which he replied, "Not even for a dog, but for something worse stirred the wrath of Goliath, who cursed him in the name of God and threatened to give his flesh to the beasts of the earth and to the fowls of the air, to be torn in pieces by them. David replied, 187 "You come to me with sword and spear and breastplate, but I come against you with God for my armour, who will destroy you and all your army by my hands. For this day I will cut off your head and throw the rest of your body to the dogs, and all people shall learn that the divinity presides over the Hebrews, and his care is our armour and strength, and other equipment or power is useless if God is not there." 188 Though he tried to run to meet David, the Philistine could only come slowly, due to the weight of his armour. Scorning him, he felt sure of killing him, unarmed as he was and in age still a child.


[189] Ἀπαντᾷ δὲ ὁ νεανίσκος μετὰ συμμάχου μὴ βλεπομένου τῷ πολεμίῳ: θεὸς δ' ἦν οὗτος. καὶ ἀνελόμενος ἐκ τῆς πήρας ὧν εἰς αὐτὴν κατέθηκεν ἐκ τοῦ χειμάρρου λίθων ἕνα καὶ ἁρμόσας τῇ σφενδόνῃ βάλλει ἐπὶ τὸν Γολίαθον εἰς τὸ μέτωπον: καὶ διῆλθεν ἕως τοῦ ἐγκεφάλου τὸ βληθέν, ὡς εὐθὺς καρωθέντα πεσεῖν τὸν Γολίαθον ἐπὶ τὴν ὄψιν. [190] δραμὼν δ' ἐφίσταται τῷ πολεμίῳ κειμένῳ καὶ τῇ ῥομφαίᾳ τῇ ἐκείνου μάχαιραν οὐκ ἔχων αὐτὸς ἀποτέμνει τὴν κεφαλὴν αὐτοῦ. [191] πεσὼν δ' ὁ Γολίαθος ἧττα καὶ φυγὴ γίνεται Παλαιστίνοις: τὸν γὰρ δοκιμώτατον ἰδόντες ἐρριμμένον καὶ περὶ τῶν ὅλων δείσαντες οὐκέτι μένειν διέγνωσαν, ἀλλ' αἰσχρᾷ καὶ ἀκόσμῳ φυγῇ παραδόντες ἑαυτοὺς ἐξαρπάζειν τῶν κινδύνων ἐπειρῶντο. Σαοῦλος δὲ καὶ πᾶς ὁ τῶν Ἑβραίων στρατὸς ἀλαλάξαντες ἐκπηδῶσιν εἰς αὐτοὺς καὶ πολλοὺς ἀποσφάττοντες διώκουσιν ἄχρι τῶν Γίττης ὁρίων καὶ τῶν πυλῶν τῶν Ἀσκάλωνος. [192] καὶ θνήσκουσι μὲν τῶν Παλαιστίνων εἰς τρισμυρίους, δὶς δὲ τοσοῦτοι τραυματίαι γίνονται. Σαοῦλος δὲ ὑποστρέψας εἰς τὸ στρατόπεδον αὐτῶν διαρπάζει τὸ χαράκωμα καὶ ἐνέπρησε: τὴν κεφαλὴν δὲ Γολιάθου Δαβίδης εἰς τὴν ἰδίαν σκηνὴν ἐκόμισε καὶ τὴν ῥομφαίαν ἀνέθηκε τῷ θεῷ.
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189 But the youth faced his opponent with an invisible assistant at his side, who was God himself. And taking from his shepherd's bag one of the stones from the brook that he had put there, and fitting it to his sling, he slung it and struck the Philistine in the forehead and sank into his brain, so that Goliath was stunned and fell upon his face. 190 Then he ran and stood over his prostrate opponent and cut off his head with his own sword, not having one himself. 191 Once Goliath fell the Philistines were defeated and fled, for when they saw their champion lying prostrate they panicked at the reversal of their fortunes and resolved to stay no longer, but took to base and shameful flight to save themselves from the danger. But Saul and the whole Hebrew army raised a shout and rushed at them and killed many and pursued the rest to the borders of Gitta and the gates of Askalon. 192 Thirty thousand of the Philistines were killed and twice as many wounded. Saul then returned to their camp and pulled their stronghold to pieces and burned it, while David carried the head of Goliath into his own tent and dedicated his sword to God.

Chapter 10. [193-204]
Saul promises David his daughter Melcha as wife, but on a dangerous condition


[193] Φθόνον δὲ καὶ μῖσος τοῦ Σαούλου πρὸς αὐτὸν αἱ γυναῖκες ἐρεθίζουσιν: ὑπαντῶσαι γὰρ τῇ στρατιᾷ νικηφόρῳ μετὰ κυμβάλων καὶ τυμπάνων καὶ παντοίας χαρᾶς ᾖδον αἱ μὲν γυναῖκες, [ὡς] πολλὰς Σαοῦλος ἀπώλεσε Παλαιστίνων χιλιάδας, αἱ παρθένοι δὲ, ὡς μυριάδας Δαυίδης ἀφανίσειε. [194] τούτων δὲ ἀκούων ὁ βασιλεύς, ὡς τὸ μὲν ἔλαττον τῆς μαρτυρίας αὐτὸς λάβοι, τὸ δὲ τῶν μυριάδων πλῆθος ἀνατεθείη τῷ νεανίσκῳ, καὶ λογισάμενος μηδὲν οὕτω μετὰ λαμπρὰν εὐφημίαν ἢ τὴν βασιλείαν ὑστερεῖν αὐτῷ φοβεῖσθαι καὶ ὑποπτεύειν ἤρξατο τὸν Δαυίδην. [195] καὶ τῆς μὲν πρώτης τάξεως, ἐπεὶ τῷ δέει πλησίον αὐτοῦ καὶ λίαν ἐγγὺς ἐδόκει, ἐποίησε γὰρ αὐτὸν ὁπλοφόρον, μεταστήσας ἀποδείκνυσι χιλίαρχον δοὺς αὐτῷ χώραν ἀμείνονα μὲν ἀσφαλεστέραν δὲ ὡς ἐνόμιζεν αὑτῷ: ἐβούλετο γὰρ εἰς τοὺς πολεμίους αὐτὸν ἐκπέμπειν καὶ τὰς μάχας ὡς ἐν τοῖς κινδύνοις τεθνηξόμενον.
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193 The women stoked up Saul's envy and hatred of David, for as they met the victorious army with cymbals and drums and all the signs of rejoicing, the women were singing that "Saul had slain many thousands of Philistines" and the virgins that "David had destroyed tens of thousands." 194 When the king heard this and that he was getting the smaller share of the credit while the bulk of it, in "myriads," was attributed to the young man, he reflected that after such mighty applause the only thing missing to him was the kingdom, so he began to be afraid and suspicious of David. 195 Therefore he moved him from the rank he had formerly given him as his armour-bearer, which he now feared had him too close to himself, and made him officer over a thousand, an apparent promotion made for the sake of his own security, wishing to send him into battles against the enemy, in the hope that he would be killed amid the dangers.


[196] Δαυίδης δὲ πανταχοῦ τὸν θεὸν ἐπαγόμενος ὅποι ποτ' ἀφίκοιτο κατώρθου καὶ διευπραγῶν ἐδείκνυτο, ὡς δι' ὑπερβολὴν τῆς ἀνδρείας τόν τε λαὸν αὐτοῦ καὶ τὴν Σαούλου θυγατέρα παρθένον ἔτι οὖσαν λαβεῖν ἔρωτα καὶ τοῦ πάθους ὑπερκρατοῦντος γενέσθαι φανερὰν καὶ διαβληθῆναι πρὸς τὸν πατέρα. [197] ὁ δ' ὡς ἀφορμῇ χρησάμενος τῆς ἐπὶ Δαυίδην ἐπιβουλῆς ἡδέως ἤκουσε καὶ δώσειν προθύμως αὐτῷ τὴν παρθένον πρὸς τοὺς τὸν ἔρωτα μηνύσαντας αὐτῆς ἔφη γενησόμενον ἀπωλείας καὶ κινδύνων αἴτιον αὐτῷ ληψομένῳ: "κατεγγυῶ γὰρ, εἶπεν, αὐτῷ τὸν τῆς θυγατρός μου γάμον, ἂν ἑξακοσίας μοι κομίσῃ κεφαλὰς τῶν πολεμίων. [198] ὁ δὲ καὶ γέρως οὕτω λαμπροῦ προτεθέντος καὶ βουλόμενος ἐπ' ἔργῳ παραβόλῳ καὶ ἀπίστῳ λαβεῖν κλέος ὁρμήσει μὲν ἐπὶ τὴν πρᾶξιν, διαφθαρήσεται δὲ ὑπὸ τῶν Παλαιστίνων καὶ χωρήσει μοι τὰ κατ' αὐτὸν εὐπρεπῶς: ἀπαλλαγήσομαι γὰρ αὐτοῦ δι' ἄλλων αὐτὸν ἀλλ' [199] οὐχὶ δι' ἐμαυτοῦ κτείνας." διάπειραν δὴ τῆς τοῦ Δαυίδου διανοίας κελεύει τοὺς οἰκέτας λαμβάνειν, πῶς ἔχει πρὸς τὸ γῆμαι τὴν κόρην. οἱ δ' ἤρξαντο διαλέγεσθαι πρὸς αὐτόν, ὅτι στέργει μὲν αὐτὸν ὁ βασιλεὺς Σαοῦλος καὶ ὁ λαὸς ἅπας, βούλεται δ' αὐτῷ κηδεῦσαι τὴν θυγατέρα. [200] ὁ δὲ "μικρὸν ἄρ' ὑμῖν, εἶπε, δοκεῖ γαμβρὸν γενέσθαι βασιλέως: ἐμοὶ δ' οὐχὶ τοιοῦτον φαίνεται καὶ μάλιστα ὄντι ταπεινῷ καὶ δόξης καὶ τιμῆς ἀμοίρῳ." Σαοῦλος δὲ ἀγγειλάντων αὐτῷ τῶν οἰκετῶν τὰς τοῦ Δαυίδου ἀποκρίσεις "οὐ χρημάτων, ἔφη, δεῖσθαί με φράζετε αὐτῷ οὐδὲ ἔδνων, ἀπεμπολᾶν γὰρ ἔστιν οὕτως τὴν θυγατέρα μᾶλλον ἢ συνοικίζειν, γαμβροῦ δὲ ἀνδρείαν ἔχοντος καὶ τὴν ἄλλην ἀρετὴν ἅπασαν, ἣν ὁρᾶν ὑπάρχουσαν αὐτῷ. [201] βούλεσθαι δή με παρ' αὐτοῦ λαβεῖν ἀντὶ τοῦ γάμου τῆς θυγατρὸς οὐ χρυσὸν οὐδ' ἄργυρον οὐδ' ὅπως ταῦτα ἐκ τῶν τοῦ πατρὸς οἰκιῶν κομίσῃ, Παλαιστίνων δὲ τιμωρίαν καὶ κεφαλὰς αὐτῶν ἑξακοσίας. [202] αὐτῷ τε γὰρ ἐμοὶ τούτων οὐδὲν ἂν οὔτε ποθεινότερον οὔτε λαμπρότερον οὔτε προτιμότερον δῶρον γένοιτο, τῇ τε παιδί μου πολὺ τῶν νενομισμένων ἔδνων ζηλωτότερον τὸ συνοικεῖν ἀνδρὶ τοιούτῳ καὶ μαρτυρουμένῳ τὴν τῶν πολεμίων ἧτταν.
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196 But David had God with him wherever he went, so that he greatly prospered, and his great courage was known to the people, and Saul's daughter, who was still a virgin, fell in love with him with so strong a passion that it was evident and was reported to her father. 197 He received this news with pleasure, seeing it as a possible trap for David, and to those who told him of her love he indicated that he would willingly give the girl to him in marriage since the risk it involved could bring about his downfall. He said, "I pledge myself to marry my daughter to him if he will bring me six hundred heads of the enemy." 198 He reckoned that the offer of such a splendid reward and the chance of glory by a deed so dangerous and incredible, would instantly set him into action so that he would be killed by the Philistines, "and nicely fulfil my plans for him. I shall be freed of him while having him killed by others and not by myself." 199 So he ordered his servants to test David's reaction to the idea of marrying the girl, so they began to tell him how king Saul loved him as he did all the people and wished to give him his daughter in marriage. 200 He replied, "Does it seem to you a small thing to be made the king's son-in-law? It does not seem so to me, especially as one so lowly and with no inherited glory or honour." When told by his servants of David's answer Saul said, "Tell him that I do not want from him any money or dowry, which would be putting my daughter for sale rather than giving her in marriage, but I want a son-in-law who is brave and has all other kinds of virtue," which he saw David that possessed. 201 His desire, he said, in return for marrying his daughter, was not gold or silver, or whatever he might bring from his father's house, but the execution of Philistines and indeed six hundred of their heads. 202 "No more desirable or glorious present could be given to me. Instead of any of the usual dowries for my daughter, I would much rather her to marry a man of that kind, who has the credit of defeating our enemy."


[203] Κομισθέντων δὲ τούτων πρὸς τὸν Δαυίδην τῶν λόγων ἡσθεὶς τὸν Σαοῦλον ἐσπουδακέναι νομίζων αὐτοῦ περὶ τὴν συγγένειαν, οὐδὲ βουλεύσασθαι περιμείνας οὐδ' εἰ δυνατὸν ἢ δύσκολόν ἐστι τὸ προκείμενον ἔργον τῷ λογισμῷ περινοήσας ὥρμησεν εὐθὺς μετὰ τῆς ἑταιρίας ἐπὶ τοὺς πολεμίους καὶ τὴν ὑπὲρ τοῦ γάμου κατηγγελμένην πρᾶξιν καί, θεὸς γὰρ ἦν ὁ πάντα ποιῶν εὐμαρῆ καὶ δυνατὰ τῷ Δαυίδῃ, κτείνας πολλοὺς καὶ κεφαλὰς ἑξακοσίων ἀποτεμὼν ἧκε πρὸς τὸν βασιλέα διὰ τῆς τούτων ἐπιδείξεως τὸν ἀντὶ τούτων γάμον ἀπαιτῶν. [204] Σαοῦλος δὲ οὐκ ἔχων ἀναφυγεῖν ἐκ τῶν ὑπεσχημένων, αἰσχρὸν γὰρ ὑπελάμβανεν ἢ ψεύσασθαι δοκεῖν ἢ δι' ἐπιβουλὴν ἵν' ὡς ἀδυνάτοις ἐπιχειρῶν ὁ Δαυίδης ἀποθάνῃ τὸν γάμον ἐπηγγέλθαι, δίδωσιν αὐτῷ τὴν θυγατέρα Μελχὰν ὀνόματι.
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203 When these words were reported to David he was pleased and imagined that Saul was really eager to have him as a relative. So, not waiting to deliberate further or ponder the possibility or difficulty of what was proposed, he and his companions instantly attacked the enemy and went about doing what was required for the marriage. Since God made all things easy and possible to David, he killed many and cut off the heads of six hundred and came to show them to the king and asked for the marriage in return. 204 As he could not go back on his word, and ashamed to be seen to have made a false promise, or to have plotted to send David on an impossible mission to bring about his death, Saul gave him his daughter, whose name was Melcha.

Chapter 11. [205-241]
Saul continues plotting against David, but with help from Jonathan and Melcha, he escapes


[205] Ἔμελλε δὲ οὐκ ἐπὶ πολὺ τοῖς γεγενημένοις ἐμμένειν Σαοῦλος ἄρα: ὁρῶν γὰρ τὸν Δαυίδην παρὰ τῷ θεῷ καὶ παρὰ τοῖς ὄχλοις εὐδοκιμοῦντα κατέδεισε, καὶ τὸν φόβον οὐκ ἔχων ἀποκρύψασθαι περὶ μεγάλων ὄντα βασιλείας τε καὶ ζωῆς, ὧν καὶ θατέρου στερηθῆναι συμφορὰ δεινή, κτείνειν τὸν Δαυίδην διεγνώκει καὶ προστάσσει τὴν ἀναίρεσιν αὐτοῦ Ἰωνάθῃ τῷ παιδὶ καὶ τοῖς πιστοτάτοις τῶν οἰκετῶν. [206] ὁ δὲ τὸν πατέρα τῆς ἐπὶ τῷ Δαυίδῃ μεταβολῆς θαυμάσας οὐκ ἐπὶ μετρίοις ἀπὸ τῆς πολλῆς εὐνοίας ἀλλ' ἐπὶ θανάτῳ γενομένης, καὶ τὸν νεανίσκον ἀγαπῶν καὶ τὴν ἀρετὴν αὐτοῦ καταιδούμενος λέγει πρὸς αὐτὸν τὸ τοῦ πατρὸς ἀπόρρητον καὶ τὴν προαίρεσιν. [207] συμβουλεύει μέντοι φυλάσσεσθαι γενόμενον ἐκποδὼν τὴν ἐπιοῦσαν ἡμέραν: αὐτὸς γὰρ ἀσπάσεσθαι τὸν πατέρα καὶ καιροῦ παραφανέντος αὐτῷ διαλεχθήσεσθαι περὶ αὐτοῦ καὶ τὴν αἰτίαν μαθήσεσθαι καὶ ταύτην ἐκφαυλίσειν, [208] ὡς οὐ δεῖν ἐπ' αὐτῇ κτείνειν τοσαῦτα μὲν ἀγαθὰ τὸ πλῆθος ἐργασάμενον εὐεργέτην δ' αὐτοῦ γεγενημένον, δι' ἃ καὶ συγγνώμην ἂν ἐπὶ τοῖς μεγίστοις ἁμαρτήμασιν εἰκότως εὕρατο. δηλώσω δέ σοι τὴν τοῦ πατρὸς γνώμην." Δαυίδης δὲ πεισθεὶς συμβουλίᾳ χρηστῇ ὑπεξίσταται τῆς τοῦ βασιλέως ὄψεως.
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205 Saul would not stay long in that state, for when he saw David honoured by God and by the people, he feared him. Unable to conceal his fear about things as vital as his kingdom and his life, losing either of which would be a disaster, he wanted David dead and ordered his son Jonathan and the most faithful of his servants to kill him. 206 Amazed at his father's total change regarding David, from showing him such goodwill to seeking to have him killed, and because he loved the young man and revered him for his virtue, Jonathan told him of his father's secret orders and his plans. 207 He advised him to be sure to be absent the next day, when he would greet his father, and if opportunity arose, would discuss it with him and learn the reason for his antipathy. 208 He would show how little basis there was for it, or for killing a man who had done so many good things for the people and been so good to him, reason enough to pardon him, even had he committed the greatest of crimes. "And I will inform you of my father's decision." David followed this good advice and kept out of the king's sight.


[209] Τῇ δ' ἐπιούσῃ πρὸς τὸν Σαοῦλον Ἰωνάθης ἐλθὼν ὡς ἱλαρόν τε καὶ χαίροντα κατέλαβεν ἤρξατο λόγους αὐτῷ περὶ τοῦ Δαυίδου προσφέρειν: "τί καταγνοὺς αὐτοῦ μικρὸν ἢ μεῖζον ἀδίκημα, πάτερ, προσέταξας ἀνελεῖν ἄνδρα μέγα μὲν αὐτῷ πρὸς σωτηρίαν ὄφελος γεγενημένον, μεῖζον δὲ πρὸς τὴν Παλαιστίνων τιμωρίαν, [210] ὕβρεως δὲ καὶ χλεύης ἀπαλλάξαντα τὸν Ἑβραίων λαὸν ἣν ἐπὶ τεσσαράκοντα ἡμέρας ὑπέμεινε μόνος τολμῶν ὑποστῆναι τὴν τοῦ πολεμίου πρόκλησιν, καὶ μετὰ ταῦτα κομίσαντα μὲν ὅσας ἐπετάχθη κεφαλὰς τῶν ἐχθρῶν, λαβόντα δ' ἐπὶ τούτῳ γέρας τὴν ἐμὴν ἀδελφὴν πρὸς γάμον, ὡς ἂν ἀλγεινὸς αὐτοῦ γένοιθ' ἡμῖν ὁ θάνατος οὐ διὰ τὴν ἀρετὴν μόνον, ἀλλὰ καὶ διὰ τὴν συγγένειαν: συναδικεῖται γὰρ αὐτοῦ τῷ θανάτῳ καὶ ἡ σὴ θυγάτηρ χηρείαν πρὶν ἢ τῆς συμβιώσεως εἰς ὄνησιν ἐλθεῖν μέλλουσα πειράζειν. [211] ταῦτα λογισάμενος μεταβαλοῦ πρὸς τὸ ἡμερώτερον καὶ μηδὲν ποιήσῃς κακὸν ἄνδρα πρῶτον μὲν εὐεργεσίαν εὐεργετήσαντα μεγάλην τὴν σὴν σωτηρίαν, ὅτε σοι τοῦ πονηροῦ πνεύματος καὶ τῶν δαιμονίων ἐγκαθεζομένων τὰ μὲν ἐξέβαλεν, εἰρήνην δὲ ἀπ' αὐτῶν τῇ ψυχῇ σου παρέσχεν, δεύτερον δὲ τὴν ἀπὸ τῶν πολεμίων ἐκδικίαν: [212] αἰσχρὸν γὰρ τούτων ἐπιλελῆσθαι." τούτοις παρηγορεῖται τοῖς λόγοις Σαοῦλος καὶ μηδὲν ἀδικήσειν τὸν Δαυίδην ὄμνυσι τῷ παιδί: κρείττων γὰρ ὀργῆς καὶ φόβου δίκαιος λόγος. Ἰωνάθης δὲ μεταπεμψάμενος τὸν Δαυίδην σημαίνει τε αὐτῷ χρηστὰ καὶ σωτήρια τὰ παρὰ τοῦ πατρὸς ἄγει τε πρὸς αὐτόν, καὶ παρέμεινε τῷ βασιλεῖ Δαυίδης ὥσπερ ἔμπροσθεν.
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209 Next day, when Jonathan went to Saul and saw him in a cheerful and happy mood, he began to talk about David. "Father, what crime, small or great, do you find so wicked in David, that you to order us to kill one who has done so much for your own safety, and still more to subdue the Philistines? 210 This man saved the Hebrews from the haughty mockery they suffered for all of forty days, when he alone was brave enough to take up the enemy's challenge, and then took the assigned number of heads of our enemies and as a reward received my sister in marriage. His death would grieve us greatly, not just due to his virtue, but due to our kinship, for killing him will wrong your daughter, making her a widow before enjoying their proper intercourse. 211 Consider this, and become more gentle and do not harm a man was so good as to spare you to us, for when you were held by the evil spirit and by demons, he expelled them and brought you inner peace from their assaults, as well as avenging us against our enemies. To forget such benefits would be ignoble." 212 With these words Saul was pacified and swore to his son not to harm David, for his righteous speech overcame the king's anger and fear. So Jonathan sent for David and brought him from his father the good news that his life would be spared. Then he led him to his father, and David continued with the king as before.


[213] Κατὰ δὲ τοῦτον τὸν καιρὸν τῶν Παλαιστίνων στρατευσαμένων πάλιν ἐπὶ τοὺς Ἑβραίους πέμπει μετὰ στρατιᾶς τὸν Δαυίδην πολεμήσοντα τοῖς Παλαιστίνοις, καὶ συμβαλὼν πολλοὺς αὐτῶν ἀπέκτεινε καὶ νικήσας ἐπάνεισι πρὸς τὸν βασιλέα. προσδέχεται δ' αὐτὸν ὁ Σαοῦλος οὐχ ὡς ἤλπισεν ἀπὸ τοῦ κατορθώματος, ἀλλ' ὑπὸ τῆς εὐπραγίας αὐτοῦ λυπηθεὶς ὡς ἐπισφαλέστερος αὐτὸς ἐκ τῶν ἐκείνου πράξεων γενόμενος. [214] ἐπεὶ δὲ πάλιν αὐτὸν προσελθὸν τὸ δαιμόνιον ἐθορύβει πνεῦμα καὶ συνετάραττε, καλέσας εἰς τὸ δωμάτιον ἐν ᾧ κατέκειτο κατέχων τὸ δόρυ προσέταξε τῷ ψαλμῷ καὶ τοῖς ὕμνοις ἐξᾴδειν αὐτόν. ἐκείνου δὲ τὰ κελευσθέντα ποιοῦντος διατεινάμενος ἀκοντίζει τὸ δόρυ: καὶ τὸ μὲν προιδόμενος ὁ Δαυίδης ἐξέκλινε, φεύγει δὲ εἰς τὸν οἶκον τὸν αὑτοῦ καὶ δι' ὅλης ἔμεινεν ἡμέρας αὐτόθι.
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213 About this time, when the Philistines set out again against the Hebrews, Saul sent David with an army to fight them, and he killed many of them in battle and returned victorious to the king. Saul did not welcome him as expected after the success, for his fame upset the king, who reckoned that he would be a danger to him after such glorious deeds. 214 When the demoniac spirit came upon him and left him disordered and disturbed, he called David into the bed-chamber where he lay and with a spear in his hand, commanded him to charm him by playing on his harp and singing. While David did as he was told, he threw the spear at him with great force, but David sensed it coming and ducked it, then fled to his own house and stayed there all that day.


[215] Νυκτὸς δὲ πέμψας ὁ βασιλεὺς ἐκέλευσεν αὐτὸν ἄχρι τῆς ἕω φυλάττεσθαι μὴ καὶ λάθῃ παντελῶς ἀφανὴς γενόμενος, ἵνα παραγενόμενος εἰς τὸ δικαστήριον καὶ κρίσει παραδοὺς ἀποκτείνῃ. Μελχὰ δὲ ἡ γυνὴ Δαυίδου θυγάτηρ δὲ τοῦ βασιλέως τὴν τοῦ πατρὸς μαθοῦσα διάνοιαν τῷ ἀνδρὶ παρίσταται δειλὰς ἔχουσα τὰς περὶ αὐτοῦ ἐλπίδας καὶ περὶ τῆς ἰδίας ψυχῆς ἀγωνιῶσα: οὐδὲ γὰρ αὑτὴν ζῆν ὑπομενεῖν ἐκείνου στερηθεῖσαν. [216] καί "μή σε, φησίν, ὁ ἥλιος ἐνταυθοῖ καταλάβῃ: οὐ γὰρ ἔτ' ὄψεταί σε. φεῦγε δ' ἕως τοῦτό σοι δύναται παρασχεῖν ἡ παροῦσα νύξ: καὶ ποιήσει δέ σοι ταύτην ὁ θεὸς μακροτέραν: ἴσθι γὰρ σαυτὸν ἂν εὑρεθῇς ὑπὸ τοῦ πατρὸς ἀπολούμενον." καὶ καθιμήσασα διὰ θυρίδος αὐτὸν ἐξέσωσεν: [217] ἔπειτα σκευάσασα τὴν κλίνην ὡς ἐπὶ νοσοῦντι καὶ ὑποθεῖσα τοῖς ἐπιβολαίοις ἧπαρ αἰγός, ἅμ' ἡμέρᾳ τοῦ πατρὸς ὡς αὐτὴν πέμψαντος ἐπὶ τὸν Δαυίδην ὠχλῆσθαι διὰ τῆς νυκτὸς εἶπε τοῖς παροῦσιν ἐπιδείξασα τὴν κλίνην κατακεκαλυμμένην καὶ τῷ πηδήματι τοῦ ἥπατος σαλεύοντι τὴν ἐπιβολὴν πιστωσαμένη τὸ κατακείμενον τὸν Δαυίδην ἀσθμαίνειν. [218] ἀπαγγειλάντων δὲ τῶν πεμφθέντων, ὅτι γένοιτο διὰ τῆς νυκτὸς ἀσθενέστερος, ἐκέλευσεν οὕτως ἔχοντα κομισθῆναι: βούλεσθαι γὰρ αὐτὸν ἀνελεῖν. ἐλθόντες δὲ καὶ ἀνακαλύψαντες τὴν κλίνην καὶ τὸ σόφισμα τῆς γυναικὸς εὑρόντες ἀπήγγειλαν τῷ βασιλεῖ. [219] μεμφομένου δὲ τοῦ πατρὸς αὐτήν, ὅτι σώσειε μὲν τὸν ἐχθρὸν αὐτοῦ κατασοφίσαιτο δ' αὐτόν, ἀπολογίαν σκήπτεται πιθανήν: ἀπειλήσαντα γὰρ αὐτὴν ἀποκτείνειν ἔφησε τυχεῖν ἐκ τοῦ δέους τῆς πρὸς τὸ σωθῆναι συνεργίας: ὑπὲρ ἧς συγγνῶναι καλῶς ἔχειν αὐτῇ κατ' ἀνάγκην ἀλλὰ μὴ κατὰ προαίρεσιν γενομένης: "οὐ γὰρ οὕτως, ἔλεγεν, οἶμαι τὸν ἐχθρὸν ἐζήτεις ἀποθανεῖν, ὡς ἐμὲ σώζεσθαι." καὶ συγγινώσκει δὲ τῇ κόρῃ Σαοῦλος. [220] ὁ δὲ Δαυίδης ἐκφυγὼν τὸν κίνδυνον ἧκε πρὸς τὸν προφήτην Σαμουῆλον εἰς Ἀραμαθὰ καὶ τὴν ἐπιβουλὴν αὐτῷ τὴν τοῦ βασιλέως ἐδήλωσε καὶ ὡς παρὰ μικρὸν ὑπ' αὐτοῦ τῷ δόρατι βληθεὶς ἀποθάνοι, μήτ' ἐν τοῖς πρὸς αὐτὸν κακὸς γενόμενος μήτ' ἐν τοῖς πρὸς τοὺς πολεμίους ἀγῶσιν ἄνανδρος, ἀλλ' ἐν ἅπασι μετὰ [τοῦ] θυμοῦ καὶ ἐπιτυχής. τοῦτο δ' ἦν αἴτιον Σαούλῳ τῆς πρὸς Δαυίδην ἀπεχθείας.
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215 That night the king sent officers with orders to guard him until morning and not let him escape, intending to bring him into the judgment-hall, to hand him over to judgment and death. When David's wife, Melcha, the king's daughter, realised her father's plan, she came to her husband, with little hope of his safety and greatly concerned for her own life too, for she could not bear to live if he were taken from her. She said, 216 "Let the sun not find you here when it rises, for if it does, it will be your last time to see it. Get away while night gives you the chance and may God lengthen it for your sake, for surely if my father finds you, you are a dead man." So she let him down from the window by a rope and saved him. 217 Then she fitted up a bed for him as if he were sick and put a goat's liver under the bed-clothes. At daylight, when her father sent to seize David, she told those who came that he had been ill during the night and showed them the covered bed and, by the pulsing liver which caused the bed-clothes to move, made them think that David was breathing like an asthmatic. 218 When the messengers reported that he had not been well in the night, Saul told them to bring him as he was, for he meant to kill him and they came and uncovered the bed and found out the woman's ruse, and told it to the king. 219 Then, when her father blamed her for saving his enemy and playing a trick against himself, she made the plausible defense that it was fear that made her help him escape, since he had threatened to kill her. She should be forgiven for helping him, because it was not done of her own free choice, but under duress. She said, "I do not suppose that you were more eager to kill your enemy than that I should be saved." So Saul forgave the girl. 220 When he had escaped from this danger, David came to the prophet Samuel at Armatha and told him the traps the king had laid for him and how he had very nearly been killed when Saul threw a spear at him, although he had done him no wrong, nor been cowardly in battle with his enemies, but had succeeded in them all, by God's help; but that this very thing was the reason for Saul's hatred of David.


[221] Μαθὼν δ' ὁ προφήτης τὴν τοῦ βασιλέως ἀδικίαν καταλείπει μὲν τὴν πόλιν Ἀραμαθάν, ἀγαγὼν δὲ τὸν Δαυίδην ἐπί τινα τόπον Γαλβουὰθ ὄνομα ἐκεῖ διέτριβε σὺν αὐτῷ. ὡς δ' ἀπηγγέλη τῷ Σαούλῳ παρὰ τῷ προφήτῃ τυγχάνων ὁ Δαυίδης πέμψας ὁπλίτας πρὸς αὑτὸν ἄγειν προσέταξε συλλαμβάνοντας. [222] οἱ δ' ἐλθόντες πρὸς τὸν Σαμουῆλον καὶ καταλαβόντες προφητῶν ἐκκλησίαν τοῦ θείου μεταλαμβάνουσι πνεύματος καὶ προφητεύειν ἤρξαντο: Σαοῦλος δ' ἀκούσας ἄλλους ἔπεμψεν ἐπὶ τὸν Δαυίδην: κἀκείνων ταὐτὸ τοῖς πρώτοις παθόντων πάλιν ἀπέστειλεν ἑτέρους: προφητευόντων δὲ καὶ τῶν τρίτων τελευταῖον ὀργισθεὶς αὐτὸς ἐξώρμησεν. [223] ἐπεὶ δ' ἐγγὺς ἦν ἤδη, Σαμουῆλος πρὶν ἰδεῖν αὐτὸν προφητεύειν ἐποίησεν. ἐλθὼν δὲ πρὸς αὐτὸν Σαοῦλος ὑπὸ τοῦ πολλοῦ πνεύματος ἐλαυνόμενος ἔκφρων γίνεται καὶ τὴν ἐσθῆτα περιδύσας ἑαυτὸν καταπεσὼν ἔκειτο δι' ὅλης ἡμέρας τε καὶ νυκτὸς Σαμουήλου τε καὶ Δαυίδου βλεπόντων.
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221 When the prophet learned of the king's injustice, he left the city of Armatha and took David to a place called Galboa and stayed there with him. When Saul was told that David was with the prophet, he sent soldiers to him with orders to take him and bring him to him. 222 When they came to Samuel and found some prophets assembled there, they shared in the divine Spirit and began to prophesy. When Saul heard of it, he sent others to David, who prophesied in the same way. When he sent others but this third group also prophesied, he was finally angry and hurried there himself. 223 As he came near the place, Samuel, before seeing him, caused him to prophesy. When Saul reached him, he was disordered in mind and fiercely agitated by a spirit. Taking off his clothes, he fell down and lay on the ground all that day and night, in the sight of Samuel and David.


[224] Ἰωνάθης δὲ ὁ Σαούλου παῖς ἀφικομένου πρὸς αὐτὸν ἐκεῖθεν Δαυίδου καὶ περὶ τῆς τοῦ πατρὸς ἀποδυρομένου ἐπιβουλῆς καὶ λέγοντος, ὡς οὐδὲν ἀδικήσας οὔτ' ἐξαμαρτὼν σπουδάζοιτο ὑπὸ τοῦ πατρὸς αὐτοῦ φονευθῆναι, μήθ' ἑαυτῷ τοῦθ' ὑπονοοῦντι πιστεύειν παρεκάλει μήτε τοῖς διαβάλλουσιν, εἴ τινες ἄρα εἰσὶν οἱ τοῦτο πράττοντες, ἀλλ' αὐτῷ προσέχειν καὶ θαρρεῖν: μηδὲν γὰρ τοιοῦτον ἐπ' αὐτῷ φρονεῖν τὸν πατέρα: φράσαι γὰρ ἂν αὐτῷ περὶ τούτου καὶ σύμβουλον παραλαβεῖν τῇ κοινῇ γνώμῃ καὶ τἆλλα πράττοντα. [225] ὁ δὲ Δαυίδης ὤμνυεν ἦ μὴν οὕτως ἔχειν, καὶ πιστεύοντ' ἠξίου προνοεῖν αὐτοῦ μᾶλλον ἢ καταφρονοῦντ' ἐπ' ἀληθέσι τοῖς λόγοις τότε ἀληθὲς ὑπολαβεῖν, ὅταν ἢ θεάσηται [πεφονευμένον αὐτὸν] ἢ πύθηται: μηδὲν λέγειν δ' αὐτῷ τὸν πατέρα περὶ τούτων ἔφασκεν εἰδότα τὴν πρὸς αὐτὸν φιλίαν καὶ διάθεσιν.
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224 Afterwards Saul's son Jonathan met David and he complained to him of the traps his father set for him and said that though he had committed no evil and had not offended him, he was still eager to have him killed. Jonathan urged him not to believe his suspicions, or the lies of those who spread those rumours, if any were doing so, but to depend on him and take heart, for his father had no such intention, or he would have tolk him so and have taken his advice, as he used to consult with him before acting in other matters. 225 But David swore that it was so, and asked him to believe him and help him come safe, rather than despise what, in all sincerity, he told him. He would believe his words soon enough, if he either personally saw him killed or heard of it from others! His father did not tell him of these things because he knew of their friendship and bond.


[226] Λυπηθεὶς δ' ἐφ' ὅτῳ πιστωσάμενος τὴν τοῦ Σαούλου προαίρεσιν Ἰωνάθης οὐκ ἔπεισεν ἐπηρώτα, τίνος ἐξ αὐτοῦ βούλεται τυχεῖν. ὁ δέ "οἶδα γάρ, ἔφη, πάντα σε χαρίζεσθαί μοι καὶ παρέχειν ἐθέλοντα: νουμηνία μὲν εἰς τὴν ἐπιοῦσάν ἐστιν, ἔθος δ' ἔχω δειπνεῖν σὺν τῷ βασιλεῖ καθήμενος: [227] εἰ δή σοι δοκεῖ πορευθεὶς ἔξω τῆς πόλεως ἐν τῷ πεδίῳ λανθάνων διαμενῶ, σὺ δ' ἐπιζητήσαντος αὐτοῦ λέγε πορευθῆναί με εἰς τὴν πατρίδα Βηθλέεμ' ἑορτήν μου τῆς φυλῆς ἀγούσης προστιθεὶς ὅτι σύ μοι συγκεχώρηκας. κἂν μὲν οἷον εἰκὸς καὶ σύνηθές ἐστι λέγειν ἐπὶ φίλοις ἀποδημοῦσιν "ἐπ' ἀγαθῷ βεβάδικεν" εἴπῃ, ἴσθι μηδὲν ὕπουλον παρ' αὐτοῦ εἶναι μηδ' ἐχθρόν: ἂν δ' ὡς ἄλλως ἀποκρίνηται τοῦτ' ἔσται τεκμήριον τῶν κατ' ἐμοῦ βεβουλευμένων. [228] μηνύσεις δέ μοι τὴν διάνοιαν τὴν τοῦ πατρὸς οἴκτῳ τε νέμων τοῦτο καὶ φιλίᾳ, δι' ἣν πίστεις τε παρ' ἐμοῦ λαβεῖν ἠξίωκας αὐτός τε ἐμοὶ δοῦναι δεσπότης ὤν. εἰ δ' εὑρίσκεις τι ἐν ἐμοὶ πονηρόν, αὐτὸς ἄνελε καὶ φθάσον τὸν πατέρα."
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226 When Jonathan found that Saul's plan was so well proven, he asked what he wanted him do for him. David replied, "I know that in everything you want to satisfy me and get me what I desire. Tomorrow is the new moon, when I would usually have sat down to supper with the king. 227 If you agree, I will leave the city and hide myself, and if Saul asks why I am absent, tell him that I have gone to my own city of Bethlehem for a festival of my own tribe, adding that you gave me permission to do so. If he should says the usual thing when friends go away, "Good for him!" then be assured that I need fear no secret harm or enmity from him; but if he answers otherwise, it will be a sure sign that he has plans against me. 228 So tell me of your father's mood, out of your sympathy and friendship for me, for you and I have exchanged assurances, like those of a master to his servant. But if you find any wickedness in me, do not wait for your father but kill me yourself."


[229] Πρὸς δὲ τὸ τελευταῖον δυσχεράνας τῶν λόγων Ἰωνάθης ποιήσειν ταῦτ' ἐπηγγείλατο κἄν τι σκυθρωπὸν ὁ πατὴρ αὐτοῦ καὶ τὴν ἀπέχθειαν ἐμφανίζον ἀποκρίνηται μηνύσειν. ἵνα δ' αὐτῷ θαρρῇ μᾶλλον, ἐξαγαγὼν αὐτὸν εἰς ὕπαιθρον καὶ καθαρὸν ἀέρα οὐδὲν παρήσειν ὑπὲρ τῆς Δαυίδου σωτηρίας ὤμνυε: [230] "τὸν γὰρ θεόν, εἶπε, τοῦτον ὃν πολὺν ὁρᾷς καὶ πανταχοῦ κεχυμένον, καὶ πρὶν ἑρμηνεῦσαί με τοῖς λόγοις τὴν διάνοιαν ἤδη μου ταύτην εἰδότα, μάρτυρα ποιοῦμαι τῶν πρὸς σὲ συνθηκῶν, ὡς οὐκ ἀνήσω τὸν πατέρα πολλάκις αὐτοῦ τῆς προαιρέσεως διάπειραν λαμβάνων, πρὶν ἢ καταμαθεῖν ἥτις ἐστὶ καὶ παρὰ τοῖς ἀπορρήτοις αὐτοῦ τῆς ψυχῆς γενέσθαι. [231] καταμαθὼν δ' οὐκ ἀποκρύψομαι, καταμηνύσω δὲ πρὸς σὲ καὶ πρᾷον ὄντα καὶ δυσμενῶς διακείμενον. οἶδε δὲ οὗτος ὁ θεός, πῶς αὐτὸν εἶναι μετὰ σοῦ διὰ παντὸς εὔχομαι: ἔστι μὲν γὰρ νῦν καὶ οὐκ ἀπολείψει σε, ποιήσει δέ σε τῶν ἐχθρῶν ἄντε ὁ πατὴρ ὁ ἐμὸς ᾖ ἄντ' ἐγὼ κρείττονα. [232] σὺ μόνον μνημόνευε τούτων, κἂν ἀποθανεῖν μοι γένηται τὰ τέκνα μου σῶζε, καὶ τὴν ὑπὲρ τῶν παρόντων μοι ἀμοιβὴν εἰς ἐκεῖνα κατάθου." ταῦτ' ἐπομόσας ἀπολύει τὸν Δαυίδην εἴς τινα τόπον ἀπελθεῖν τοῦ πεδίου φράσας, ἐν ᾧ γυμναζόμενος διατελεῖ: γνοὺς γὰρ τὰ παρὰ τοῦ πατρὸς ἥξειν πρὸς αὐτὸν ἔφησεν ἐκεῖ μόνον ἐπαγόμενος παῖδα. [233] καὶ τρία ἀκόντια δὲ βαλὼν ἐπὶ τὸν σκοπὸν κομίσαι τῷ παιδὶ προστάσσω τὰ ἀκόντια: κεῖσθαι γὰρ ἔμπροσθεν αὐτοῦ. "καὶ ἂν ταῦτα, φησίν, ἀκούσῃς γίνωσκε μηδὲν εἶναι φαῦλον παρὰ τοῦ πατρός: ἂν δὲ τὰ ἐναντία τούτων ἀκούσῃς μου λέγοντος, καὶ τὰ ἐναντία παρὰ τοῦ βασιλέως προσδόκα. [234] τῆς μέντοι γε ἀσφαλείας τεύξῃ παρ' ἐμοῦ καὶ οὐδὲν μὴ πάθῃς ἄτοπον: ὅπως δὲ μνησθῇς τούτων παρὰ τὸν τῆς εὐπραγίας καιρὸν σκόπει καὶ τοῖς υἱοῖς μου γενοῦ χρήσιμος." Δαυίδης μὲν οὖν ταύτας λαβὼν παρὰ Ἰωνάθου τὰς πίστεις εἰς τὸ συγκείμενον ἀπηλλάγη χωρίον.
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229 Jonathan was angry at these last words and gave his promised to tell him if his father's answers implied anything dire, or any enmity towards him. But to give him more confidence, he took him out into the pure air and swore that he would leave nothing undone for David safety. 230 He said, "I appeal to God, whom you see shining all round you, and knows my mind before I put it into words, to witness my covenant with you, that I will not cease my frequent efforts to find out my father's purpose until I learn the inmost secrets of his soul. 231 When I have learnt them, I will not conceal them from you, but whether he is well or badly disposed I will tell you. For God knows how I pray that he may be with you always. He is with you now and will not forsake you and will set you above your enemies, even if my father were one of them, or even I myself. 232 Just remember this moment, and if it happens that I die, save the lives of my children and repay to them the kindness you now receive." After swearing this, he sent David away to go to a place in the plain where he used to perform his exercises. Then when he knew his father's mind he would come to him there, with just one servant. 233 He said, "If I shoot three spears at the mark and then have my servant bring the spears to me, for will fall in front of him, you will know you have nothing to fear from my father; but if you hear me say the opposite, expect the opposite from the king. 234 In this way I will care for your safety so that you suffer no harm. In your time of prosperity, be sure not to forget this, and be kind to my children." Having got these assurances from Jonathan, David went off to the agreed place.


[235] Τῇ δ' ἐχομένῃ, νεομηνία δ' ἦν, ἁγνεύσας ὡς ἔθος εἶχεν ὁ βασιλεὺς ἧκεν ἐπὶ τὸ δεῖπνον, καὶ παρακαθεσθέντων αὐτῷ τοῦ μὲν παιδὸς Ἰωνάθου ἐκ δεξιῶν Ἀβενήρου δὲ τοῦ ἀρχιστρατήγου ἐκ τῶν ἑτέρων, ἰδὼν τὴν τοῦ Δαβίδου καθέδραν κενὴν ἡσύχασεν ὑπονοήσας οὐ καθαρεύσαντα αὐτὸν ἀπὸ συνουσίας ὑστερεῖν. [236] ὡς δὲ καὶ τῇ δευτέρᾳ τῆς νουμηνίας οὐ παρῆν ἐπυνθάνετο παρὰ τοῦ παιδὸς Ἰωνάθου, ὅτι καὶ τῇ παρελθούσῃ καὶ ταύτῃ τοῦ δείπνου καὶ τῆς ἑστιάσεως ὁ τοῦ Ἰεσσαίου παῖς ἀπολέλειπται. ὁ δὲ πεπορεῦσθαι κατὰ τὰς συνθήκας ἔφησεν αὐτὸν εἰς τὴν ἑαυτοῦ πατρίδα τῆς φυλῆς ἑορτὴν ἀγούσης ἐπιτρέψαντος αὐτοῦ: παρακαλέσαι μέντοι καὶ αὐτὸν ἐλθεῖν ἐπὶ τὴν θυσίαν καὶ εἰ συγχωρηθείη φησὶν ἀπέρχεσθαι: [237] τὴν γὰρ εὔνοιάν μου τὴν πρὸς αὐτὸν ἐπίστασαι." τότε τὴν πρὸς Δαυίδην τοῦ πατρὸς Ἰωνάθης ἐπέγνω δυσμένειαν καὶ τρανῶς τὴν ὅλην αὐτοῦ βούλησιν εἶδεν: οὐ γὰρ κατέσχε Σαοῦλος τῆς ὀργῆς, ἀλλὰ βλασφημῶν ἐξ αὐτομόλων γεγενημένον καὶ πολέμιον ἀπεκάλει καὶ κοινωνὸν τοῦ Δαυίδου καὶ συνεργὸν ἔλεγεν καὶ μήτ' αὐτὸν αἰδεῖσθαι μήτε τὴν μητέρα αὐτοῦ ταῦτα φρονοῦντα καὶ μηδὲ βουλόμενον πεισθῆναι τοῦθ', ὅτι μέχρις οὗ περίεστι Δαυίδης ἐπισφαλῶς αὐτοῖς τὰ τῆς βασιλείας ἔχει. "μετάπεμψαι τοιγαροῦν αὐτόν, [238] ἔφησεν, ἵνα δῷ δίκην." ὑποτυχόντος δ' Ἰωνάθου, "τί δ' ἀδικοῦντα κολάσαι θέλεις;" οὐκέτ' εἰς λόγους καὶ βλασφημίας τὴν ὀργὴν ὁ Σαοῦλος ἐξήνεγκεν, ἀλλὰ ἁρπάσας τὸ δόρυ ἀνεπήδησεν ἐπ' αὐτὸν ἀποκτεῖναι θέλων. καὶ τὸ μὲν ἔργον οὐκ ἔδρασε διακωλυθεὶς ὑπὸ τῶν φίλων, φανερὸς δ' ἐγένετο τῷ παιδὶ μισῶν τὸν Δαυίδην καὶ διαχρήσασθαι ποθῶν, ὡς παρὰ μικρὸν δι' ἐκεῖνον αὐτόχειρ καὶ τοῦ παιδὸς γεγονέναι.
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235 Next day, which was the new moon, the king came to supper after purifying himself in the traditional way, and sat his son Jonathan next to him on his right side and his army general, Abner, on the other side. He saw David's seat empty, but said nothing, thinking that he had not purified himself since having sexual intercourse. 236 But when he was not there either on the second of the month, he asked his son Jonathan why Jesse's son was missing from the supper and the feast, that day and the day before. He said he had given him permission to go to his own city where his tribe was holding a festival and had also invited him to come to their sacrifice. "With your permission," he added, "I will go there, for you know how well I love him." 237 Then Jonathan came to know his father's hatred of David and plainly saw his disposition, for Saul could not restrain his anger, but rebuked Jonathan and called him the son of a renegade and an enemy, and called him David's partner and helper, and that his behaviour showed how little he cared for himself, or for his mother, when he could not see that their throne was not secure as long David was alive. Then he said "Now send for him and I will give him justice!" 238 When Jonathan replied, "What wrong did he do, for you to punish him?" Saul no longer vented his anger in words and blasphemies, but snatched up his spear and jumped at him as if to kill him. His friends stopped him from doing the deed, but it was clear to his son how he hated David and so craved to be rid of him that on his account he almost killed his son by his own hand.


[239] Καὶ τότε μὲν ὁ τοῦ βασιλέως παῖς ἐκπηδήσας [ἀπὸ] τοῦ δείπνου καὶ μηδὲν ὑπὸ λύπης προσενέγκασθαι δυνηθείς, κλαίων αὑτὸν μὲν τοῦ παρὰ μικρὸν ἀπολέσθαι τοῦ κατακεκρίσθαι δ' ἀποθανεῖν Δαυίδην διενυκτέρευσεν. ἅμα δὲ ἡμέρᾳ πρὸ τῆς πόλεως εἰς τὸ πεδίον ὡς γυμνασόμενος μὲν δηλώσων δὲ τῷ φίλῳ τὴν τοῦ πατρὸς διάθεσιν, ὡς συνέθετο, πρόεισι. [240] ποιήσας δὲ ὁ Ἰωνάθης τὰ συγκείμενα τὸν μὲν ἑπόμενον ἀπολύει εἰς τὴν πόλιν παῖδα, ἦν δ' ἠρεμία τῷ Δαυίδῃ παρελθεῖν εἰς ὄψιν αὐτῷ καὶ λόγους. ἀναφανεὶς δ' οὗτος πίπτει πρὸ τῶν Ἰωνάθου ποδῶν καὶ προσκυνῶν σωτῆρα αὐτοῦ τῆς ψυχῆς ἀπεκάλει. [241] ἀνίστησι δ' ἀπὸ τῆς γῆς αὐτόν, καὶ περιπλακέντες ἀλλήλους μακρά τε ἠσπάζοντο καὶ δεδακρυμένα τήν τε ἡλικίαν ἀποθρηνοῦντες αὑτῶν καὶ τὴν ἐφθονημένην ἑταιρίαν καὶ τὸν μέλλοντα διαχωρισμόν, ὃς οὐδὲν αὐτοῖς ἐδόκει θανάτου διαφέρειν. μόλις δ' ἐκ τῶν θρήνων ἀνανήψαντες καὶ μεμνῆσθαι τῶν ὅρκων ἀλλήλοις παρακελευσάμενοι διελύθησαν.
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239 Too grieved to eat anything, the king's son quickly left the supper, and spent the night in tears, both because he had nearly been killed and because the death of David had been decreed. As soon as it was day, he went out into the plain outside the city, apparently for gymnastics, but really to inform his friend of his father's attitude, as he had agreed. 240 Then, when Jonathan had done the necessary, he sent his servant back to the city, and went off himself into the desert to meet David and talk with him. He came and fell at Jonathan's feet and bowed down to him, calling him his life-saver, 241 But he lifted him from the ground and they embraced each other in a long and tearful greeting. They grieved for their passing youth and for their envied friendship and for their coming separation, which seemed no different from death to them. Finally they stopped grieving, and urging each other to recall their mutual oaths, they parted company.

Chapter 12. [242-270]
David flees to Abimelech, then to the Philistines. Saul's revenge on Abimelech


[242] Δαυίδης δὲ φεύγων τὸν βασιλέα καὶ τὸν ἐξ αὐτοῦ θάνατον εἰς Ναβὰν παραγίνεται πόλιν πρὸς Ἀβιμέλεχον τὸν ἀρχιερέα, ὃς ἐπὶ τῷ μόνον ἥκοντα ἰδεῖν καὶ μήτε φίλον σὺν αὐτῷ μήτ' οἰκέτην παρόντα ἐθαύμασε καὶ τὴν αἰτίαν τοῦ μηδένα εἶναι σὺν αὐτῷ μαθεῖν ἤθελεν. [243] ὁ δὲ πρᾶξιν ἀπόρρητον ἐπιταγῆναι παρὰ τοῦ βασιλέως ἔφησεν, εἰς ἣν συνοδίας αὐτῷ βουλομένῳ λαθεῖν οὐκ ἔδει: τοὺς μέντοι θεράποντας εἰς τόνδε μοι τὸν τόπον ἀπαντᾶν προσέταξα." ἠξίου δὲ λαβεῖν ἐφόδια: φίλου γὰρ αὐτὸν ποιήσειν ἔργον παρασχόντα καὶ πρὸς τὸ προκείμενον συλλαμβανομένου. [244] τυχὼν δὲ τούτων ᾔτει καὶ ὅπλον τι μετὰ χεῖρας ῥομφαίαν ἢ δοράτιον: παρῆν δὲ καὶ Σαούλου δοῦλος γένει μὲν Σύρος Δώηγος δὲ ὄνομα τὰς τοῦ βασιλέως ἡμιόνους νέμων: ὁ δ' ἀρχιερεὺς ἔχειν μὲν αὐτὸς οὐδέν τι εἶπε τοιοῦτον, εἶναι δὲ τὴν Γολιάθου ῥομφαίαν, ἣν ἀποκτείνας τὸν Παλαιστῖνον αὐτὸς ἀναθείη τῷ θεῷ.

242 But David fled from the king who wanted him killed and came to the city of Naba, to Abimelech the priest, who was amazed to see him coming alone with no friend or servant, and wanted to know why there was nobody with him. 243 He replied that he came on a secret mission from the king for which he had no need of anyone to accompany him. "But I have ordered my servants to meet me at a particular place." He asked for something to eat, saying that if he supplied them he would be acting like a friend and help him in his mission. 244 When he got these, he also asked if he had any weapons to hand, either sword or spear. A servant of Saul's was present, a Syrian named Doeg, who looked after the king's mules. The high priest said that he had nothing of the kind but added, "Here is the sword of Goliath, which you dedicated to God when you killed the Philistine."


[245] λαβὼν δὲ ταύτην ὁ Δαβίδης ἔξω τῆς τῶν Ἑβραίων χώρας εἰς Γίτταν διέφυγε τὴν Παλαιστίνων, ἧς Ἄγχους ἐβασίλευεν. ἐπιγνωσθεὶς δὲ ὑπὸ τῶν τοῦ βασιλέως οἰκετῶν καὶ φανερὸς αὐτῷ γενόμενος μηνυόντων ἐκείνων, ὅτι Δαυίδης ὁ πολλὰς ἀποκτείνας Παλαιστίνων μυριάδας εἴη, δείσας μὴ πρὸς αὐτοῦ θάνῃ καὶ τὸν κίνδυνον ὃν ἐξέφυγε παρὰ Σαούλου παρ' ἐκείνου πειράσῃ προσποιεῖται μανίαν καὶ λύσσαν, ὡς ἀφρὸν κατὰ τοῦ στόματος αὐτοῦ φερόμενον καὶ τὰ ἄλλα ὅσα συνίστησι μανίαν πίστιν παρὰ τῷ Γίττης βασιλεῖ γενέσθαι τῆς νόσου. [246] καὶ τοῖς οἰκέταις ὁ βασιλεὺς προσδυσχεράνας ὡς ἔκφρονα πρὸς αὐτὸν ἀγάγοιεν ἄνθρωπον ἐκέλευσε τὸν Δαυίδην ὡς τάχος ἐκβάλλειν.
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245 Taking it, David fled from the Hebrew territory into that of the Philistines under king Achus, and when the king's servants recognised him and introduced him to the king as the David who had killed many thousands of the Philistines, he feared for his life, that he would suffer from him the danger he had just escaped from Saul. So he acted like a madman and lunatic, with spittle running from his mouth and other such things to make the king of Gitta believe they were the symptoms of the illness. 246 The king was very angry that his servants had brought him a madman and he ordered them to expel David instantly.


[247] Διασωθεὶς δὲ οὗτος ἐκ τῆς Γίττης εἰς τὴν Ἰούδα παραγίνεται φυλὴν καὶ ἐν τῷ πρὸς Ἀδολλάμῃ πόλει σπηλαίῳ διατρίβων πέμπει πρὸς τοὺς ἀδελφοὺς δηλῶν αὐτοῖς ἔνθα εἴη. οἱ δὲ μετὰ πάσης συγγενείας ἧκον πρὸς αὐτόν: καὶ τῶν ἄλλων δὲ ὅσοις ἢ χρεία ἦν ἢ φόβος ἐκ Σαούλου τοῦ βασιλέως συνερρύησαν πρὸς αὐτὸν καὶ ποιεῖν τὰ ἐκείνῳ δοκοῦντα ἑτοίμως ἔχειν ἔλεγον. ἐγένοντο δὲ οἱ πάντες ὡσεὶ τετρακόσιοι. [248] θαρρήσας δὲ ὡς καὶ χειρὸς αὐτῷ καὶ συνεργίας ἤδη γεγενημένης ἀπάρας ἐκεῖθεν ἀφικνεῖται πρὸς τὸν τῶν Μωαβιτῶν βασιλέα, καὶ τοὺς γονεῖς αὐτοῦ εἰς τὴν ἑαυτοῦ χώραν προσδεξάμενον ἕως οὗ ἐπὶ τὸ καθ' αὑτὸν τέλος ἔχειν παρεκάλει: κατανεύσαντος δ' αὐτοῦ τὴν χάριν καὶ πάσης τοὺς γονεῖς τοῦ Δαυίδου τιμὴς παρ' ὃν ἐτύγχανον παρ' αὐτῷ χρόνον ἀξιώ
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247 When David had escaped from Gitta like this, he came to the tribe of Judas and lived in a cave near the city of Adullam. Then he sent to his brothers to tell them where he was, and they came to him with all their relatives. Many others also, who were either needy or afraid of king Saul, came and banded together and said they were ready to obey his orders; in all they numbered about four hundred. 248 Taking courage now that such a force had come to help him, he moved from there and came to the king of the Moabites and asked him to make his parents welcome in his land until he had settled his affairs. He granted him this favour and showed every respect to David's parents in the time they were with him.


[249] σαντος αὐτὸς τοῦ προφήτου κελεύσαντος αὐτὸν τὴν μὲν ἐρημίαν ἐκλιπεῖν, πορευθέντα δ' εἰς τὴν κληρουχίαν τῆς Ἰούδα φυλῆς ἐν αὐτῇ διάγειν πείθεται καὶ παραγενόμενος εἰς Σάριν πόλιν ἐν αὐτῇ κατέμενε. [250] Σαοῦλος δ' ἀκούσας ὅτι μετὰ πλήθους ὀφθείη ὁ Δαυίδης οὐκ εἰς τυχόντα θόρυβον καὶ ταραχὴν ἐνέπεσεν, ἀλλ' εἰδὼς τὸ φρόνημα τοῦ ἀνδρὸς καὶ τὴν εὐτολμίαν οὐδὲν ἐξ αὐτοῦ μικρὸν ἀνακύψειν ἔργον ἐφ' οὗ κλαύσεσθαι πάντως καὶ πονήσειν ὑπενόησε. [251] καὶ συγκαλέσας τοὺς φίλους καὶ τοὺς ἡγεμόνας καὶ τὴν φυλὴν ἐξ ἧς αὐτὸς ἦν πρὸς αὑτὸν ἐπὶ τὸν βουνὸν οὗ τὸ βασίλειον εἶχε, καὶ καθίσας ἐπ' Ἀρούρης, τόπος ἦν τις τιμῆς, πολιτικῆς περὶ αὐτὸν οὔσης τάξεως σωματοφυλάκων λέγει πρὸς αὐτούς: "ἄνδρες ὁμόφυλοι, μέμνησθε μὲν οἶδ' ὅτι τῶν ἐμῶν εὐεργεσιῶν, ὅτι καὶ ἀγρῶν τινας ἐποίησα δεσπότας καὶ τιμῶν τῶν ἐν τῷ πλήθει καὶ τάξεων ἠξίωσα. [252] πυνθάνομαι τοιγαροῦν, εἰ μείζονας τούτων δωρεὰς καὶ πλείονας παρὰ τοῦ Ἰεσσαίου παιδὸς προσδοκᾶτε: οἶδα γὰρ ὅτι πάντες ἐκείνῳ προστέθεισθε τοὐμοῦ παιδὸς Ἰωνάθου αὐτοῦ τε οὕτως φρονήσαντος καὶ ὑμᾶς ταῦτα πείσαντος: [253] οὐ γὰρ ἀγνοῶ τοὺς ὅρκους καὶ τὰς συνθήκας τὰς πρὸς Δαυίδην αὐτῷ γεγενημένας, οὐδ' ὅτι σύμβουλος μὲν καὶ συνεργὸς Ἰωνάθης ἐστὶ τῶν κατ' ἐμοῦ συντεταγμένων, μέλει δὲ ὑμῶν οὐδενὶ περὶ τούτων, ἀλλὰ τὸ ἀποβη [254] σόμενον ἡσυχάζοντες σκοπεῖτε." σιωπήσαντος δὲ τοῦ βασιλέως ἄλλος μὲν οὐδεὶς ἀπεκρίνατο τῶν παρόντων, Δώηγος δ' ὁ Σύρος ὁ τὰς ἡμιόνους αὐτοῦ βόσκων εἶπεν, ὡς ἴδοι τὸν Δαυίδην εἰς Ναβὰν πόλιν πρὸς Ἀβιμέλεχον ἐλθόντα τὸν ἀρχιερέα τά τε μέλλοντα παρ' αὐτοῦ προφητεύσαντος μαθεῖν καὶ λαβόντα ἐφόδια καὶ τὴν ῥομφαίαν τοῦ Γολιάθου πρὸς οὓς ἐβούλετο μετὰ ἀσφαλείας προπεμφθῆναι.

249 When told by the prophet to leave the desert and to go and live in the region allotted to the tribe of Judas, David obeyed and went to the city of Saris in that area, where he remained. 250 Saul was very disturbed and worried when he heard that David had been seen accompanied by a crowd, for knowing his spirit and courage he suspected he would stir up something not inconsiderable that would cause him major trouble and distress. 251 He called together his friends and officers and his native tribe to the hill where he had his palace and sitting on a place called Aroura with his high courtiers and bodyguards, he said to them, "My fellow tribesmen, I am sure you remember my benefits to you, making some of you landowners and honouring you as officers over the people and over the ranks. 252 So I ask you, do you expect more and greater favours from the son of Jesse? For I know that you are all inclined to him and even my own son Jonathan shares that view and advocates it to you. 253 I am not unaware of his oaths and promises to David and that Jonathan acts as counsellor and helper to those ranged against me and none of you intervenes in this affair, but you silently watch to see what will come of it." 254 When the king fell silent none of the others present made any answer, but then Doeg the Syrian, who took care of his mules, told how he had seen David coming to the city of Naba to Abimelech the high priest and learning of the future by his prophecies, and how he received food and the sword of Goliath from him, and was sent on by him in safety to wherever he wanted to go.


[255] Μεταπεμψάμενος οὖν τὸν ἀρχιερέα καὶ πᾶσαν αὐτοῦ τὴν γενεὰν Σαοῦλος "τί παθὼν ἐξ ἐμοῦ, εἶπε, δεινὸν καὶ ἄχαρι τὸν Ἰεσσαίου παῖδα προσεδέξω καὶ σιτίων μὲν αὐτῷ μετέδωκας καὶ ὅπλων ὄντι τῆς ἐμῆς βασιλείας ἐπιβούλῳ, τί δὲ δὴ περὶ τῶν μελλόντων ἐχρημάτιζες; οὐ γὰρ δή σε φεύγων ἐμὲ καὶ μισῶν τὸν ἐμὸν [256] οἶκον ἐλάνθανεν." ὁ δ' ἀρχιερεὺς οὐκ ἐπ' ἄρνησιν ἐτράπη τῶν γεγονότων, ἀλλὰ μετὰ παρρησίας ταῦτα παρασχεῖν ὡμολόγει οὐχὶ Δαυίδῃ χαριζόμενος, ἀλλ' αὐτῷ: "πολέμιον γὰρ σὸν οὐκ εἰδέναι ἔφασκε, πιστὸν δὲ ἐν τοῖς μάλιστα δοῦλον καὶ χιλίαρχον καὶ τὸ τούτων μεῖζον γαμβρόν τε ἤδη καὶ συγγενῆ. [257] ταῦτα δ' οὐκ ἐχθροῖς παρέχειν τοὺς ἀνθρώπους, ἀλλὰ τοῖς εὐνοίᾳ καὶ τιμῇ τῇ πρὸς αὐτοὺς ἀρίστοις. προφητεῦσαι δὲ οὐ νῦν πρῶτον αὐτῷ, πολλάκις δὲ καὶ ἄλλοτε τοῦτο πεποιηκέναι: φήσαντι δὲ ὑπὸ σοῦ πεμφθῆναι κατὰ πολλὴν σπουδὴν ἐπὶ πρᾶξιν τῷ μηδὲν παρασχεῖν ὧν ἐπεζήτει σοὶ μᾶλλον ἀντιλέγειν ἢ ἐκείνῳ περὶ αὐτῶν ἐλογιζόμην. [258] διὸ μηδὲν πονηρὸν κατ' ἐμοῦ φρονήσῃς μηδὲ πρὸς ἃ νῦν ἀκούεις Δαυίδην ἐγχειρεῖν πρὸς ταῦτα τὴν τότε μου δοκοῦσαν φιλανθρωπίαν ὑποπτεύσῃς: φίλῳ γὰρ καὶ γαμβρῷ σῷ καὶ χιλιάρχῳ παρέσχον, οὐ πολεμίῳ."
* * *

255 Saul then sent for the high priest and all his clan and said, "What wrong or injury have you suffered from me, that you welcomed the son of Jesse and gave him food and weapons, when he was plotting to take over my kingdom? And why did you prophecy to him about future events? For you were not unaware that he was fleeing from me and hates my family." 256 The high priest did not try to deny what had happened, but boldly affirmed that he had supplied these things, not for David's sake, but for Saul's. He said, "I did not see him as your enemy but as your faithful servant and officer, and even more, your son-in-law and kinsman. 257 Such favours are not granted to opponents but to those whom people deem to show them the most goodwill and respect. Nor was this my first time to prophesy for him, for I have often done so at other times too. So when he said he was sent in great haste by you to do something, I would have thought that not to give him any of what he sought would be to refuse you rather than him. 258 So do not think badly of me, or in light of what is now said of David's plans blame me for what then seemed to me an act of kindness, for I treated him as your friend, son-in-law and officer, and not as your enemy."


[259] Ταῦτα λέγων ὁ ἀρχιερεὺς οὐκ ἔπεισε τὸν Σαοῦλον: δεινὸς γὰρ ὁ φόβος μηδ' ἀληθεῖ πιστεύειν ἀπολογίᾳ: κελεύει δὲ τοῖς ὁπλίταις περιστᾶσιν αὐτὸν ἀποκτεῖναι. μὴ θαρρούντων δ' ἐκείνων ἅψασθαι τοῦ ἀρχιερέως, ἀλλὰ τὸ θεῖον εὐλαβουμένων μᾶλλον ἢ τὸ παρακοῦσαι τοῦ βασιλέως, τῷ Σύρῳ Δωήγῳ προστάσσει τὸν φόνον. [260] καὶ παραλαβὼν ὁμοίους αὑτῷ πονηροὺς ἐκεῖνος ἀποκτείνει τὸν Ἀβιμέλεχον καὶ τὴν γενεὰν αὐτοῦ: ἦσαν δὲ πάντες ὡσεὶ πέντε καὶ τριακόσιοι. πέμψας δὲ Σαοῦλος καὶ εἰς τὴν πόλιν τῶν ἱερέων Ναβὰν πάντας τε αὐτοὺς ἀπέκτεινεν οὐ γυναικῶν οὐ νηπίων οὐδ' ἄλλης ἡλικίας φεισάμενος, αὐτὴν δὲ ἐνέπρησε. [261] διασώζεται δὲ παῖς [εἷς] Ἀβιμελέχου Ἀβιάθαρος ὄνομα. ταῦτα μέντοι συνέβη, καθὼς προεφήτευσεν ὁ θεὸς τῷ ἀρχιερεῖ Ἠλὶ διὰ τὰς τῶν υἱῶν αὐτοῦ δύο παρανομίας εἰπὼν διαφθαρήσεσθαι τοὺς ἐγγόνους.

259 The high priest's words did not persuade Saul, whose fear was too strong to let him credit even so justified an apology, so he ordered his warriors to surround and kill him. But when they did not dare to touch the high priest, revering God rather than obeying the king, he ordered Doeg the Syrian to do the killing. 260 So enlisting bad men like himself, he killed Abimelech and all his family, about three hundred and eighty-five in all. Saul also sent to Naba, the city of the priests and killed all who were there, sparing neither women nor children nor people of any age, and burned it. 261 Only one son of Abimelech named Abiathar escaped. These things happened as God had foretold to Eli the high priest, saying that for the transgression of his two sons his descendants would be destroyed.


[262] Σαοῦλος δὲ ὁ βασιλεὺς ὠμὸν οὕτως ἔργον διαπραξάμενος καὶ γενεὰν ὅλην ἀρχιερατικῆς ἀποσφάξας τιμῆς καὶ μήτ' ἐπὶ νηπίοις λαβὼν οἶκτον μήτ' ἐπὶ γέρουσιν αἰδῶ, καταβαλὼν δὲ καὶ τὴν πόλιν, ἣν πατρίδα καὶ τροφὸν τῶν ἱερέων καὶ προφητῶν αὐτόθι τὸ θεῖον ἐπελέξατο καὶ μόνην εἰς τὸ τοιούτους φέρειν ἄνδρας ἀπέδειξε, μαθεῖν ἅπασι παρέσχε καὶ κατανοῆσαι τὸν ἀνθρώπινον τρόπον, [263] ὅτι μέχρις οὗ μέν εἰσιν ἰδιῶταί τινες καὶ ταπεινοὶ τῷ μὴ δύνασθαι χρῆσθαι τῇ φύσει μηδὲ τολμᾶν ὅσα θέλουσιν ἐπιεικεῖς εἰσι καὶ μέτριοι καὶ μόνον διώκουσι τὸ δίκαιον, καὶ πρὸς αὐτῷ τὴν πᾶσαν εὔνοιάν [τε] καὶ σπουδὴν ἔχουσι τότε, καὶ περὶ τοῦ θείου πεπιστεύκασιν, ὅτι πᾶσι τοῖς γινομένοις ἐν τῷ βίῳ πάρεστι καὶ οὐ τὰ ἔργα μόνον ὁρᾷ τὰ πραττόμενα, ἀλλὰ καὶ τὰς διανοίας ἤδη σαφῶς οἶδεν, ἀφ' ὧν μέλλει ταῦτα ἔσεσθαι: [264] ὅταν δὲ εἰς ἐξουσίαν παρέλθωσι καὶ δυναστείαν, τότε πάντ' ἐκεῖνα μετεκδυσάμενοι καὶ ὥσπερ ἐπὶ σκηνῆς προσωπεῖα τὰ ἤθη καὶ τοὺς τρόπους ἀποθέμενοι μεταλαμβάνουσι τόλμαν ἀπόνοιαν καταφρόνησιν ἀνθρωπίνων τε καὶ θείων, [265] καὶ ὅτε μάλιστα δεῖ τῆς εὐσεβείας αὐτοῖς καὶ τῆς δικαιοσύνης ἔγγιστα τοῦ φθονεῖσθαι γεγενημένοις καὶ πᾶσι φανεροῖς ἐφ' οἷς ἂν νοήσωσιν ἢ πράξωσι καθεστῶσι, τόθ' ὡς οὐκέτι βλέποντος αὐτοὺς τοῦ θεοῦ ἢ διὰ τὴν ἐξουσίαν δεδιότος οὕτως ἐμπαροινοῦσι τοῖς πράγμασιν. [266] ἃ δ' ἂν ἢ φοβηθῶσιν ἀκούσαντες ἢ μισῶσι θελήσαντες ἢ στέρξωσιν ἀλόγως, ταῦτα κύρια καὶ βέβαια καὶ ἀληθῆ καὶ ἀνθρώποις ἀρεστὰ καὶ τῷ θεῷ δοκοῦσι, τῶν δὲ μελλόντων λόγος αὐτοῖς οὐδὲ εἷς: [267] ἀλλὰ τιμῶσι μὲν [τοὺς] πολλὰ ταλαιπωρήσαντας, τιμήσαντες δὲ φθονοῦσι, καὶ παραγαγόντες εἰς ἐπιφάνειαν οὐ ταύτης ἀφαιροῦνται μόνον τοὺς τετυχηκότας, ἀλλὰ διὰ ταύτην καὶ τοῦ ζῆν ἐπὶ πονηραῖς αἰτίαις καὶ δι' ὑπερβολὴν αὐτῶν ἀπιθάνοις: κολάζουσι δ' οὐκ ἐπ' ἔργοις δίκης ἀξίοις, ἀλλ' ἐπὶ διαβολαῖς καὶ κατηγορίαις ἀβασανίστοις, οὐδ' ὅσους ἔδει τοῦτο παθεῖν, ἀλλ' ὅσους ἀποκτεῖναι δύνανται. [268] τοῦτο Σαοῦλος ἡμῖν ὁ Κείσου παῖς, ὁ πρῶτος μετὰ τὴν ἀριστοκρατίαν [καὶ] τὴν ἐπὶ τοῖς κριταῖς πολιτείαν Ἑβραίων βασιλεύσας, φανερὸν πεποίηκε τριακοσίους ἀποκτείνας ἱερέας καὶ προφήτας ἐκ τῆς πρὸς Ἀβιμέλεχον ὑποψίας, ἐπικαταβαλὼν δὲ αὐτοῖς καὶ τὴν πόλιν καὶ τὸν ἐν τρόπῳ τινὶ ναὸν σπουδάσας ἱερέων καὶ προφητῶν ἔρημον καταστῆσαι τοσούτους μὲν ἀνελών, μεῖναι δ' ἐάσας οὐδὲ τὴν πατρίδα αὐτῶν πρὸς τὸ καὶ μετ' ἐκείνους ἄλλους γενέσθαι.

262 In committing so gross a crime as murdering a whole family of high priestly rank, with no pity for infants or respect for the aged, and destroying the city that God had chosen as the property and support of the priests and prophets living there, designated as the only city for their education, king Saul teaches a clear lesson about human nature. 263 As long as they are private individuals in a humble station, since it is not in their power to indulge desire or to take whatever they want, people are fair and moderate and only seek what is just and devote their minds and efforts to it. Then they have faith in God, believing him present to all the actions of their lives and that he not only sees what they do but also knows the motives behind those acts. 264 But once they achieve authority and power they discard all such ideas, and like actors in the theatre, lay aside their former parts and roles and assume audacity, insolence and scorn for things both human and divine. 265 They do this just when they stand most in need of piety and righteousness, for it is then most of all that they are exposed to envy, when all they think and say is in full view of everyone. Then it is that they become so insolent in their behaviour, as though God no longer saw them, or even feared them because of their power. 266 Whatever they fear because of rumour, or willfully hate or love beyond reason, seems to them genuine and firm and true and aceptable to mankind and to God, and pay no heed to what will come later. 267 They honour those who worked hard for them but later envy them, and after bringing them to high rank, not only deprive them of their gains but of their lives, on malicious grounds which, for their very excess, should not be believed. They execute people who are condemned on foot of calumnies and unproven accusations, applying this not only to those deserving of punishment but to as many as they can kill. 268 The example of Saul, son of Kish, the first king to reign after the end of our aristocracy and the period of the judges, illustrates this for us, for he slaughtered three hundred priests and prophets because of his suspicion about Abimelech, adding the evil of destroying their city, as though seeking to deprive the temple of both priests and prophets, as he showed by killing so many of them and not even allowing their city to survive, so that others could succeed them.


[269] Ὁ δ' Ἀβιάθαρος ὁ τοῦ Ἀβιμελέχου παῖς ὁ μόνος δυνηθεὶς ἐκ τοῦ γένους τῶν ὑπὸ τοῦ Σαούλου φονευθέντων ἱερέων φυγὼν πρὸς Δαυίδην τὴν τῶν οἰκείων αὐτοῦ συμφορὰν ἐδήλωσε καὶ τὴν τοῦ πατρὸς ἀναίρεσιν. [270] ὁ δ' οὐκ ἀγνοεῖν ἔφη ταῦτα περὶ αὐτοὺς ἐσόμενα ἰδὼν τὸν Δώηγον: ὑπονοῆσαι γὰρ διαβληθήσεσθαι πρὸς αὐτοῦ τὸν ἀρχιερέα τῷ βασιλεῖ, καὶ τῆς ἀτυχίας ταύτης αὐτοῖς αὑτὸν ᾐτιᾶτο. μένειν δ' αὐτόθι καὶ σὺν αὐτῷ διατρίβειν ὡς οὐκ ἐν ἄλλῳ τόπῳ λησόμενον οὕτως ἠξίου.
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269 Abiathar the son of Abimelech, the only one of the priestly family killed by Saul who was able to escape, fled to David and told him of his family's fate and of his father's murder. 270 He said he knew what would happen to them when he saw Doeg, for he suspected that man would falsely accuse the high priest to the king and he blamed himself as the cause of this misfortune. But David asked him to stay on and live with him, for nowhere else could he be better hidden.

Chapter 13. [271-324]
David spares king Saul, when he has chance to kill him. The death of Samuel


[271] Κατὰ δὲ τοῦτον τὸν καιρὸν ἀκούσας ὁ Δαυίδης τοὺς Παλαιστίνους ἐμβεβληκότας εἰς τὴν Κιλλανῶν χώραν καὶ ταύτην διαρπάζοντας δίδωσιν ἑαυτὸν στρατεύειν ἐπ' αὐτοὺς τοῦ θεοῦ διὰ τοῦ προφήτου πυθόμενος εἰ ἐπιτρέπει νίκην. τοῦ δὲ σημαίνειν φήσαντος ἐξώρμησεν ἐπὶ τοὺς Παλαιστίνους μετὰ τῶν ἑταίρων καὶ φόνον τε αὐτῶν πολὺν ἐξέχεε καὶ λείαν ἤλασεν. [272] καὶ παραμείνας τοῖς Κιλλανοῖς ἕως οὗ τὰς ἅλως καὶ τὸν καρπὸν συνεῖλον ἀδεῶς Σαούλῳ τῷ βασιλεῖ μηνύεται παρ' αὐτοῖς ὤν: τὸ γὰρ ἔργον καὶ τὸ κατόρθωμα οὐκ ἔμεινε παρ' οἷς ἐγένετο, φήμῃ δ' ἐπίπαν εἴς τε τὰς τῶν ἄλλων ἀκοὰς καὶ πρὸς τὰς τοῦ βασιλέως διεκομίσθη αὑτό τε συνιστάνον καὶ τὸν πεποιηκότα. [273] χαίρει δὲ Σαοῦλος ἀκούσας ἐν Κίλλα τὸν Δαυίδην, καί "θεὸς ἤδη χερσὶ ταῖς ἐμαῖς ὑπέθετο αὐτόν, εἰπών, ἐπεὶ καὶ συνηνάγκασεν ἐλθεῖν εἰς πόλιν τείχη καὶ πύλας καὶ μοχλοὺς ἔχουσαν", τῷ λαῷ παντὶ προσέταξεν ἐπὶ τὴν Κίλλαν ἐξορμῆσαι καὶ πολιορκήσαντι καὶ ἑλόντι τὸν Δαυίδην ἀποκτεῖναι. [274] ταῦτα δὲ αἰσθόμενος ὁ Δαυίδης καὶ μαθὼν παρὰ τοῦ θεοῦ, ὅτι μείναντα παρ' αὐτοῖς οἱ Κιλλῖται ἐκδώσουσι τῷ Σαούλῳ, παραλαβὼν τοὺς τετρακοσίους ἀπῆρεν ἀπὸ τῆς πόλεως εἰς τὴν ἔρημον ἐπάνω τῆς Ἐνγεδὼν λεγομένης. καὶ ὁ μὲν βασιλεὺς ἀκούσας αὐτὸν πεφευγότα παρὰ τῶν Κιλλιτῶν ἐπαύσατο τῆς ἐπ' αὐτὸν στρατείας.
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271 About this time David heard how the Philistines had attacked the region of Keilah and robbed it, so he offered to fight against them, if God, when consulted by the prophet, promised him victory. When the prophet said God had signalled a victory, with his companions he made a quick attack on the Philistines and shed a large amount of their blood and carried off their booty. 272 He stayed with the people of Keilah until they had safely harvested their corn and other crops. King Saul was told how he was with them since what had been done and its outcome were not confined to the locality, but the story was spread and both the deed and its author were reported to the king. 273 Saul was glad to hear David was in Keilah, and he said, "now God has put him into my hands, having brought him into a city that has walls and gates and bars." So he ordered the whole people to besiege and take it, and to kill David. 274 When David realised this and learned from God that if he stayed, the men of Keilah would hand him over to Saul, he took his four hundred men and retreated to a wilderness near a city called Engedi. When the king heard he had escaped from the people of Keilah, he left off his expedition against him.


[275] Δαυίδης δὲ ἐκεῖθεν ἄρας εἴς τινα τόπον Καινὴν καλουμένην τῆς Ζιφήνης παραγίνεται, εἰς ὃν Ἰωνάθης ὁ τοῦ Σαούλου παῖς συμβαλὼν αὐτῷ καὶ κατασπασάμενος θαρρεῖν τε καὶ χρηστὰς περὶ τῶν μελλόντων ἔχειν ἐλπίδας παρεκάλει καὶ μὴ κάμνειν τοῖς παροῦσι: βασιλεύσειν γὰρ αὐτὸν καὶ πᾶσαν τὴν Ἑβραίων δύναμιν ἕξειν ὑφ' ἑαυτῷ, φιλεῖν δὲ τὰ τοιαῦτα σὺν μεγάλοις ἀπαντᾶν πόνοις. [276] πάλιν δ' ὅρκους ποιησάμενος τῆς εἰς ἅπαντα τὸν βίον πρὸς ἀλλήλους εὐνοίας καὶ πίστεως καὶ τὸν θεὸν μάρτυρα καλέσας, ὧν ἐπηράσατο αὑτῷ παραβάντι τὰ συγκείμενα καὶ μεταβαλλομένῳ πρὸς τἀναντία, τὸν μὲν αὐτόθι καταλείπει μικρὰ τῶν φροντίδων καὶ τοῦ δέους ἐπικουφίσας, αὐτὸς δὲ πρὸς αὑτὸν ἐπανέρχεται. [277] οἱ δὲ Ζιφηνοὶ χαριζόμενοι τῷ Σαούλῳ μηνύουσιν αὐτῷ παρ' αὐτοῖς διατρίβειν τὸν Δαυίδην καὶ παραδώσειν ἔφασαν ἐπ' αὐτὸν ἐλθόντι: καταληφθέντων γὰρ τῶν τῆς Ζιφηνῆς στενῶν οὐκ εἶναι φυγεῖν αὐτὸν πρὸς ἄλλους. [278] ὁ δὲ βασιλεὺς ἐπῄνεσεν αὐτοὺς χάριν ἔχειν ὁμολογήσας τὸν ἐχθρὸν αὐτῷ μεμηνυκόσι, καὶ οὐκ εἰς μακρὰν ἀμείψεσθαι τῆς εὐνοίας ὑποσχόμενος αὐτοὺς ἔπεμψε τοὺς ζητήσοντας τὸν Δαυίδην καὶ τὴν ἐρημίαν ἐξερευνήσοντας, αὐτὸς δ' ἀκολουθήσειν ἀπεκρίνατο. [279] καὶ οἱ μὲν ἐπὶ τὴν θήραν καὶ τὴν σύλληψιν τοῦ Δαυίδου προῆγον τὸν βασιλέα σπουδάζοντες μὴ μόνον αὐτῷ μηνῦσαι τὸν ἐχθρὸν [αὐτῷ τὴν εὔνοιαν], ἀλλὰ καὶ τῷ παρασχεῖν αὐτὸν εἰς ἐξουσίαν φανερωτέραν καταστῆσαι: διήμαρτον δὲ τῆς ἀδίκου καὶ πονηρᾶς ἐπιθυμίας, οἳ μηδὲν κινδυνεύειν ἔμελλον ἐκ τοῦ μὴ ταῦτ' ἐμφανίσαι τῷ Σαούλῳ, [280] διὰ δὲ κολακείαν καὶ κέρδους προσδοκίαν παρὰ τοῦ βασιλέως ἄνδρα θεοφιλῆ καὶ παρὰ δίκην ζητούμενον ἐπὶ θανάτῳ καὶ λανθάνειν δυνάμενον διέβαλλον καὶ παραδώσειν ὑπέσχοντο: γνοὺς γὰρ ὁ Δαυίδης τὴν τῶν Ζιφηνῶν κακοήθειαν καὶ τὴν τοῦ βασιλέως ἔφοδον ἐκλείπει μὲν τὰ στενὰ τῆς ἐκείνων χώρας, φεύγει δὲ ἐπὶ τὴν μεγάλην πέτραν τὴν οὖσαν ἐν τῇ Σίμωνος ἐρήμῳ.

275 David moved from there and came to what was called the New Place, in Ziph. There Saul's son Jonathan, came to him and greeted him and urged him to take heart and to have good hope for the future and not be despondent at his present plight, for he would be king and have all the forces of the Hebrews under him and that such success often comes with great labour and toil. 276 They swore to each other that as long as they lived they would continue in goodwill and fidelity to each other, each calling God to witness the curses he called upon himself if he broke his covenant by acting contrary to it. So after easing his cares and fears, Jonathan left him there and returned home. 277 To gratify Saul, the people of Ziph told him that David was staying with them and that if he came they would hand him over, and that if the king held the ravine of Ziph, David could not escape anywhere else. 278 The king praised and thanked them for letting him know about his enemy, and promised to repay their kindness soon. He also sent men to look for David and search the wilderness where he was, promising that he would follow them. 279 So they went ahead of the king, to hunt for David, eager to show loyalty to Saul, not just by telling him where his enemy was, but even more plainly by handing him over into him, but in this evil desire, they failed. They would have run no risk by concealing this from Saul, 280 but in a spirit of flattery and to win a reward from the king, they falsely accused and promised to hand over to death a man beloved by God, who was unjustly hunted and who might otherwise have stayed hidden. When David heard of the malice of the men of Ziph and of Saul's approach, he left the ravine in that region and fled to the great rock in the wilderness of Simon.


[281] Ὥρμησεν δὲ ἐπ' ἐκείνην διώκειν Σαοῦλος: κατὰ γὰρ τὴν ὁδὸν ἀναχωρήσαντα ἐκ τῶν στενῶν μαθὼν τὸν Δαυίδην ἐπὶ τὸ ἕτερον μέρος τῆς πέτρας ἀπῆρεν. ἀντιπεριέσπασαν δὲ τὸν Σαοῦλον ἀπὸ τῆς διώξεως τοῦ Δαυίδου μέλλοντος ἤδη συλλαμβάνεσθαι Παλαιστῖνοι πάλιν ἐπὶ τὴν Ἑβραίων ἐστρατευκέναι χάραν ἀκουσθέντες: ἐπὶ γὰρ τούτους ἀνέστρεψε φύσει πολεμίους ὄντας αὐτοὺς ἀμύνασθαι κρίνας ἀναγκαιότερον, ἢ τὸν ἴδιον σπουδάζοντα λαβεῖν ἐχθρὸν ὑπεριδεῖν τὴν γῆν κακωθεῖσαν.
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281 Saul hurried there in pursuit of him and learning on the march that David had left the ravine of Ziph, he moved to the far side of the rock. But news that the Philistines had again invaded the Hebrew territory called Saul away from pursuing David, when he was about to be caught. He returned to fighting their natural enemies, the Philistines, judging it more vital to take revenge on them than to waste time catching his personal enemy, and ignore the ravaging of the land.


[282] Καὶ Δαυίδης μὲν οὕτως ἐκ παραλόγου τὸν κίνδυνον διαφυγὼν εἰς τὰ στενὰ τῆς Ἐνγεδηνῆς ἀφικνεῖται: Σαούλῳ δὲ ἐκβαλόντι τοὺς Παλαιστίνους ἧκον ἀπαγγέλλοντές τινες τὸν Δαυίδην ἐν τοῖς Ἐγγεδηνῆς διατρίβειν ὅροις. [283] λαβὼν δὲ τρισχιλίους ἐπιλέκτους ὁπλίτας ἐπ' αὐτὸν ἠπείγετο, καὶ γενόμενος οὐ πόρρω τῶν τόπων ὁρᾷ παρὰ τὴν ὁδὸν σπήλαιον βαθὺ καὶ κοῖλον εἰς πολὺ καὶ μῆκος ἀνεῳγὸς καὶ πλάτος, ἔνθα συνέβαινε τὸν Δαυίδην μετὰ τῶν τετρακοσίων κεκρύφθαι: ἐπειγόμενος οὖν ὑπὸ τῶν κατὰ φύσιν εἴσεισιν εἰς αὐτὸ μόνος θεαθεὶς ὑπό τινος τῶν μετὰ Δαυίδου: [284] καὶ φράσαντος τοῦ θεασαμένου πρὸς τὸν ἐχθρὸν αὐτοῦ παρὰ τοῦ θεοῦ καιρὸν ἔχειν ἀμύνης καὶ συμβουλεύοντος τοῦ Σαούλου ἀποτεμεῖν τὴν κεφαλὴν καὶ τῆς πολλῆς ἄλης αὑτὸν ἀπαλλάξαι καὶ ταλαιπωρίας, ἀναστὰς ἀναίρει μὲν τὴν κροκύδα τοῦ ἱματίου μόνον οὗ Σαοῦλος ἀμπείχετο, μετανοήσας δ' εὐθύς "οὐ δίκαιον, εἶπε, φονεύειν τὸν αὑτοῦ δεσπότην, οὐδὲ τὸν ὑπὸ τοῦ θεοῦ βασιλείας ἀξιωθέντα: καὶ γὰρ εἰ πονηρὸς οὗτος εἰς ἡμᾶς, ἀλλ' οὐκ ἐμὲ δεῖ τοιοῦτον εἶναι [285] πρὸς αὐτόν." τοῦ δὲ Σαούλου τὸ σπήλαιον ἐκλιπόντος προελθὼν ὁ Δαυίδης ἔκραγεν ἀκοῦσαι τὸν Σαοῦλον ἀξιῶν. ἐπιστραφέντος δὲ τοῦ βασιλέως προσκυνεῖ τε αὐτὸν πεσὼν ἐπὶ πρόσωπον, ὡς ἔθος, καί φησιν: "οὐ πονηροῖς, ὦ βασιλεῦ, καὶ ψευδεῖς πλάττουσι διαβολὰς παρέχοντα δεῖ τὰς ἀκοὰς χαρίζεσθαι μὲν ἐκείνοις τὸ πιστεύειν αὐτοῖς, εἰς δὲ τοὺς φιλτάτους ὑπονοίας ἔχειν, ἀλλὰ τοῖς ἔργοις σκοπεῖν τὴν ἁπάντων διάθεσιν. [286] διαβολὴ μὲν γὰρ ἀπατᾷ, σαφὴς δ' ἀπόδειξις εὐνοίας τὰ πραττόμενα: καὶ λόγος μὲν ἐπ' ἀμφότερα πέφυκεν ἀληθής τε καὶ ψευδής, τὰ δὲ ἔργα γυμνὴν ὑπ' ὄψει τὴν διάνοιαν τίθησιν. [287] ἴσθι τοίνυν ἐκ τούτων καλῶς ἔχειν με πρὸς σὲ καὶ τὸν σὸν οἶκον ἐμοὶ πιστεῦσαι δεῖ, καὶ μὴ τοῖς κατηγοροῦσιν ἃ μήτε εἰς νοῦν ἐβαλόμην μήτε δύναται γενέσθαι προσθέμενον μεταδιώκειν τὴν ἐμὴν ψυχὴν καὶ μηδὲν μήθ' ἡμέρας μήτε νυκτὸς ἔχειν διὰ φροντίδος ἢ τὴν ἐμὴν ἀναίρεσιν, ἣν ἀδίκως μεταπορεύῃ: [288] πῶς γὰρ οὐχὶ ψευδῆ περὶ ἐμοῦ δόξαν εἴληφας ὡς ἀποκτεῖναί σε θέλοντος; ἢ πῶς οὐκ ἀσεβεῖς εἰς τὸν θεὸν ἄνθρωπον τήμερον αὑτῷ τιμωρῆσαι δυνάμενον καὶ παρὰ σοῦ λαβεῖν δίκην καὶ μὴ θελήσαντα μηδὲ τῷ καιρῷ χρησάμενον, ὃν εἰ σοὶ κατ' ἐμοῦ περιέπεσεν οὐκ ἂν αὐτὸς παρῆκας, διαχρήσασθαι ποθῶν καὶ νομίζων πολέμιον; [289] ὅτε γάρ σου τὴν πτέρυγα τοῦ ἱματίου ἀπέτεμον, τότε σου καὶ τὴν κεφαλὴν ἠδυνάμην." ἐπιδείξας δὲ τὸ ῥάκος ἰδεῖν πιστεύειν παρεῖχεν. "ἀλλ' ἐγὼ μὲν ἀπεσχόμην δικαίας ἀμύνης, φησί, σὺ δὲ μῖσος ἄδικον οὐκ αἰδῇ κατ' ἐμοῦ τρέφων. ὁ θεὸς ταῦτα δικάσειε καὶ τὸν [290] ἑκατέρου τρόπον ἡμῶν ἐλέγξειε." Σαοῦλος δὲ ἐπὶ τῷ παραδόξῳ τῆς σωτηρίας θαυμάσας καὶ τὴν τοῦ νεανίσκου μετριότητα καὶ φύσιν ἐκπλαγεὶς ἀνῴμωξε: τὸ δ' αὐτὸ κἀκείνου ποιήσαντος αὐτὸν εἶναι δίκαιον στένειν ἀπεκρίνατο: "σὺ μὲν γάρ, φησίν, ἀγαθῶν αἴτιος ἐμοὶ γέγονας, ἐγὼ δὲ σοὶ συμφορῶν. ἐπεδείξω δὲ σήμερον τὴν ἀρχαίων ἔχοντα σαυτὸν δικαιοσύνην, οἳ τοὺς ἐχθροὺς ἐν ἐρημίᾳ λαβόντες σώζειν παρήγγελλον. [291] πέπεισμαι δὴ νῦν, ὅτι σοὶ τὴν βασιλείαν ὁ θεὸς φυλάττει καὶ περιμένει σε τὸ πάντων τῶν Ἑβραίων κράτος. δὸς δέ μοι πίστεις ἐνόρκους μή μου τὸ γένος ἐξαφανίσαι μηδ' ἐμοὶ μνησικακοῦντα τοὺς ἐμοὺς ἐγγόνους ἀπολέσαι, τηρῆσαι δέ μοι καὶ σῶσαι τὸν οἶκον." ὀμόσας δὲ καθὼς ἠξίωκε Δαυίδης Σαοῦλον μὲν εἰς τὴν ἰδίαν ἀπέλυσε βασιλείαν, αὐτὸς δὲ μετὰ τῶν σὺν αὐτῷ εἰς τὴν Μασθηρῶν ἀνέβη στενήν.
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282 In this unexpected way David escaped from the danger and reached the ravine of Engedi, and when Saul had driven the Philistines from the land, some messengers came to tell him David was living near Engedi. 283 So he took three thousand chosen armed men and hurried after him and when he was not far from the place, he saw a deep and hollow cave by the way-side, very long and wide, and there David with his four hundred men were concealed. To answer a call of nature, he entered into it alone, and being seen by one of David's men. 284 The one who saw him told David that God's providence was letting him take revenge on his enemy, and advised him to behead him and so put an end to his wandering plight. He rose and only cut off the edge of the garment Saul was wearing. Even this he soon repented, saying it was not right to kill his master, whom God had thought worthy of the kingdom. "Even if he is wicked towards us, I must not be so towards him." 285 When Saul had left the cave, David came near and called out loud for Saul to hear him. The king turned round and David, according to custom, fell on his face to honour the king and said, "My king, you should not gratify bad men and liars by believing what they say, nor be suspicious of your best friends, but judge each one's loyalty by their actions. 286 Lying leads men astray but men's actions show their goodwill. Words of their nature may be either true or false, but actions make men's intentions plain to view. 287 From them it is well for you to believe in my regard for you and for your house and not to believe those accuse me of things that never came into my mind, and that I could not do. You go further by seeking my life and have no concern by day or night, except to put an end to me, quite unjustly. 288 How have you come to hold this false opinion about me, that I wished to kill you? Or how can you be right with God, when you reckon me your enemy, and want to punish a man who this day had it in his power to take revenge on you, but would not do it? If you had that chance against me, you would not have let it slip. 289 When I cut off the edge off your cloak, I could have done the same with your head." Showing him the piece of cloth he forced him to agree that what he said was true, and added, "I surely have refrained from taking a just revenge upon you, and are you not ashamed to follow me with your unjust hatred? May God do justice and decide between our respective behaviour." 290 Saul was amazed at being so strangely spared, and he groaned, touched by the young man's fairness and good nature. When David also groaned, the king replied that he had the more reason to grieve. "You have done good to me, as I have done evil to you, and you have shown today that you have the justice of the ancients, who decided that men should spare their enemies, even if they catch them in a deserted place. 291 I am now convinced that God is keeping the kingdom for you and that you will rule over all the Hebrews. Give me your assurance upon oath, not to root out my family or destroy my descendants, in memory of the wrong I have done you, but to save and preserve my house." David swore as he wanted and sent Saul back to his own kingdom, but he and his companions went up the ravine of Mastheroth.


[292] Ἀποθνήσκει δὲ κατὰ τοῦτον τὸν καιρὸν καὶ Σαμουῆλος ὁ προφήτης, ἀνὴρ οὐ τῆς τυχούσης ἀπολαύων παρὰ τοῖς Ἑβραίοις τιμῆς: ἐνεφάνισε γὰρ τὴν ἀρετὴν αὐτοῦ καὶ τὴν τοῦ πλήθους πρὸς αὐτὸν εὔνοιαν τὸ πένθος, ὃ ἐπὶ πολὺν χρόνον ὁ λαὸς ἤγετο, καὶ ἡ περὶ τὴν ταφὴν αὐτοῦ καὶ τὴν τῶν νομιζομένων ἀναπλήρωσιν φιλοτιμία τε καὶ σπουδή. [293] θάπτουσι γὰρ αὐτὸν ἐν τῇ πατρίδι Ἀρμεθᾶ καὶ ἐπὶ πολλὰς πάνυ ἡμέρας ἔκλαυσαν, οὐ κοινὸν τοῦτο πάσχοντες ὡς ἐπ' ἀλλοτρίου τελευτῇ, ὡς οἰκεῖον δ' ἕκαστος ἴδιον ποθῶν. [294] ἐγένετο δ' ἀνὴρ δίκαιος καὶ χρηστὸς τὴν φύσιν καὶ διὰ τοῦτο μάλιστα φίλος τῷ θεῷ. ἦρξε δὲ καὶ προέστη τοῦ λαοῦ μετὰ τὴν Ἠλεὶ τοῦ ἀρχιερέως τελευτὴν μόνος μὲν ἔτη δώδεκα, μετὰ δὲ Σαούλου τοῦ βασιλέως δέκα πρὸς τοῖς ὀκτώ. καὶ τὰ μὲν περὶ Σαμουῆλον οὕτω πέρας ἔσχεν.

292 About this time The prophet Samuel died, a man honoured in an extraordinary degree by the Hebrews. For his virtue and the affection the people had for him was shown by their lengthy mourning for him and the solemnity and ceremonial observed in his funeral rites. 293 They buried him in his own town of Armatha, and wept for him many of days, not as though grieving the death of just anyone, but as one linked to each of themselves. 294 He was a righteous man and gentle in his nature and on that account very dear to God. He ruled and presided over the people for twelve years after the death of Eli the high priest, and eighteen years along with Saul the king. So we have finished the story of Samuel.


[295] Ἦν δέ τις τῶν Ζιφηνῶν ἐκ πόλεως Ἐμμᾶν πλούσιος καὶ πολυθρέμματος: τρισχιλίων μὲν γὰρ αὐτῷ ποίμνη προβάτων ἐνέμετο, χιλίων δ' αἰγῶν. ταῦτα Δαυίδης ἀσινῆ τηρεῖν τε καὶ ἀβλαβῆ παρήγγελλε τοῖς σὺν αὐτῷ καὶ μήτε ὑπὸ ἐπιθυμίας μήτε ὑπὸ ἐνδείας μήτε ὑπὸ τῆς ἐρημίας καὶ τοῦ δύνασθαι λανθάνειν καταβλάπτειν, τούτων δ' ἁπάντων ἐπάνω τίθεσθαι τὸ μηδέν' ἀδικεῖν καὶ τὸ τῶν ἀλλοτρίων ἅπτεσθαι δεινὸν ἡγεῖσθαι καὶ πρόσαντες τῷ θεῷ. [296] ταῦτα δ' ἐδίδασκεν αὐτοὺς οἰόμενος ἀνθρώπῳ χαρίζεσθαι ἀγαθῷ καὶ ταύτης τυγχάνειν ἀξίῳ τῆς προνοίας. ἦν δὲ Νάβαλος, τοῦτο γὰρ εἶχεν ὄνομα, σκληρὸς καὶ πονηρὸς τοῖς ἐπιτηδεύμασιν ἐκ κυνικῆς ἀσκήσεως πεποιημένος τὸν βίον, γυναικὸς δ' ἀγαθῆς καὶ σώφρονος καὶ τὸ εἶδος ὡραίας λελαχώς. [297] πρὸς οὖν τὸν Νάβαλον τοῦτον καθ' ὃν ἔκειρε τὰ πρόβατα καιρὸν πέμψας ὁ Δαυίδης ἄνδρας δέκα τῶν σὺν αὐτῷ διὰ τούτων αὐτὸν ἀσπάζεται καὶ συνεύχεται τοῦτο ποιεῖν ἐπ' ἔτη πολλά: παρασχεῖν δὲ ἐξ ὧν δυνατός ἐστιν αὐτῷ παρεκάλει μαθόντα παρὰ τῶν ποιμένων, ὅτι μηδὲν αὐτοὺς ἠδίκησαν, ἀλλὰ φύλακες αὐτῶν τε καὶ τῶν ποιμνίων γεγόνασι πολὺν ἐν τῇ ἐρήμῳ διατρίβοντες ἤδη χρόνον: μετανοήσει δ' οὐδὲν Δαυίδῃ παρασχόμενος. [298] ταῦτα δὲ τῶν πεμφθέντων διακονησάντων πρὸς τὸν Νάβαλον ἀπανθρώπως σφόδρα καὶ σκληρῶς ἀπήντησεν: ἐρωτήσας γὰρ αὐτούς, τίς ἐστι Δαυίδης, ὡς τὸν υἱὸν ἤκουσεν Ἰεσσαίου, "νῦν ἄρα, εἶπε, μέγα φρονοῦσιν ἐφ' αὑτοῖς οἱ δρα [299] πέται καὶ σεμνύνονται τοὺς δεσπότας καταλιπόντες." ὀργίζεται δ' αὐτῶν φρασάντων ὁ Δαυίδης καὶ τετρακοσίους μὲν ὡπλισμένους αὐτῷ κελεύσας ἕπεσθαι, διακοσίους δὲ φύλακας τῶν σκευῶν καταλιπών, ἤδη γὰρ εἶχεν ἑξακοσίους, ἐπὶ τὸν Νάβαλον ἐβάδιζεν ὀμόσας ἐκείνῃ τῇ νυκτὶ τὸν οἶκον αὐτοῦ καὶ τὴν κτῆσιν ὅλην ἀφανίσειν: οὐ γὰρ ἄχθεσθαι μόνον ὅτι γέγονεν ἀχάριστος ἐπ' αὐτοὺς μηδὲν ἐπιδοὺς πολλῇ φιλανθρωπίᾳ πρὸς αὐτὸν χρησαμένοις, ἀλλ' ὅτι καὶ προσεβλασφήμησε καὶ κακῶς εἶπε μηδὲν ὑπ' αὐτῶν λελυπημένος.

295 There was a rich Ziphite from the city of Emman who had a vast number of livestock, who pastured a flock of three thousand sheep and another of a thousand goats. David had instructed his men to leave those flocks along unharmed, even if they coveted them or were in want, and though it could be hidden out in the wilderness. They were to set freedom from injustice above all other motives and to look upon taking what belonged to another man as a horrible crime and contrary to God's will. 296 These were his orders, thinking that the favour he showed him was shown to a good man who was worthy of such care. This man was Nabal, a harsh man with a wicked lifestyle, cynical in behaviour, but he had as wife a woman of a good character, wise and of fine appearance. 297 To this Nabal, David sent ten of his men at sheep shearing time and greeted him through them, and prayed that he might continue as he was for many years to come. He asked him to give him whatever he could, as he had surely learned from his shepherds that we had done them no harm, but had protected them for a long time while living in the wilderness; and he would never repent of anything he gave to David. 298 When the messengers gave this message to Nabal, he roughly mistreated them, demanding to know who David was. Hearing that he was Jesse's son, he said, "Now the fugitives grow insolent and boast about leaving their masters." 299 When they told David this, he was angry and ordered four hundred warriors to follow him, leaving two hundred to take care of the equipment, for he now had six hundred, and went against Nabal. He swore to utterly destroy the whole house and possessions of Nabal that night, angry that not only had he been ungrateful by making no return for the kindness they had shown him, but he had insulted them with foul language when they had given him no reason for displeasure.


[300] Δούλου δέ τινος τῶν τὰ ποίμνια φυλασσόντων τὰ τοῦ Ναβάλου πρὸς τὴν δέσποιναν μὲν ἑαυτοῦ γυναῖκα δ' ἐκείνου κατειπόντος, ὅτι πέμψας ὁ Δαυίδης αὐτῆς πρὸς τὸν ἄνδρα μηδενὸς τύχοι τῶν μετρίων, ἀλλὰ καὶ προσυβρισθείη βλασφημίαις δειναῖς πάσῃ περὶ αὐτοὺς προνοίᾳ καὶ φυλακῇ τῶν ποιμνίων χρησάμενος, [301] γέγονε δὲ τοῦτο ἐπὶ κακῷ τῷ τοῦ δεσπότου καὶ ταῦτ' ἐκείνου φήσαντος Ἀβιγαία, προσηγορεύετο γὰρ οὕτως, ἐπισάξασα τοὺς ὄνους καὶ πληρώσασα παντοίων ξενίων καὶ μηδὲν εἰποῦσα τἀνδρί, ὑπὸ γὰρ μέθης ἀναίσθητος ἦν, ἐπορεύετο πρὸς Δαυίδην: καταβαινούσῃ δὲ τὰ στενὰ τοῦ ὄρους ἀπήντησε Δαυίδης μετὰ τῶν τετρακοσίων ἐπὶ Νάβαλον ἐρχόμενος. [302] θεασαμένη δ' αὐτὸν ἡ γυνὴ κατεπήδησε καὶ πεσοῦσα ἐπὶ πρόσωπον προσεκύνησε καὶ τῶν μὲν Ναβάλου λόγων ἐδεῖτο μὴ μνημονεύειν [οὐ γὰρ ἀγνοεῖν] αὐτὸν ὅμοιον ὄντα τῷ ὀνόματι, Νάβαλος γὰρ κατὰ τὴν Ἑβραίων γλῶτταν ἀφροσύνην δηλοῖ, αὐτὴ δ' ἀπελογεῖτο μὴ θεάσασθαι τοὺς πεμφθέντας ὑπ' αὐτοῦ: [303] "διὸ συγγίνωσκέ μοι, φησί, καὶ τῷ θεῷ χάριν ἔχε κωλύοντί σε μιανθῆναι ἀνθρωπίνῳ αἵματι: μένοντα γάρ σε καθαρὸν ἐκεῖνος αὐτὸς ἐκδικήσει παρὰ τῶν πονηρῶν: ἃ γὰρ ἐκδέχεται κακὰ Νάβαλον ταῦτα καὶ ταῖς τῶν ἐχθρῶν σου κεφαλαῖς ἐμπέσοι. [304] γενοῦ δὲ εὐμενής μοι κρίνας ἀξίαν τοῦ παρ' ἐμοῦ ταῦτα δέξασθαι, καὶ τὸν θυμὸν καὶ τὴν ὀργὴν τὴν ἐπὶ τὸν ἄνδρα μου καὶ τὸν οἶκον αὐτοῦ εἰς τὴν ἐμὴν τιμὴν ἄφες: πρέπει γὰρ ἡμέρῳ σοι καὶ φιλανθρώπῳ τυγχάνειν, [305] καὶ ταῦτα μέλλοντι βασιλεύειν." ὁ δὲ τὰ δῶρα δεξάμενος "ἀλλά σε, φησίν, ὦ γύναι, θεὸς εὐμενὴς ἤγαγε πρὸς ἡμᾶς τήμερον: οὐ γὰρ ἂν τὴν ἐπερχομένην ἡμέραν εἶδες, ἐμοῦ τὸν οἶκον τὸν Ναβάλου διὰ τῆσδε τῆς νυκτὸς ὀμόσαντος ἀπολέσαι καὶ μηδένα ὑμῶν ἀπολείψειν ἀπὸ ἀνδρὸς [ἕως τετραπόδου] πονηροῦ καὶ ἀχαρίστου πρὸς ἐμὲ καὶ τοὺς ἐμοὺς ἑταίρους γενομένου. νῦν δὲ φθάσασα προέλαβες καταμειλίξασθαί μου τὸν θυμὸν κηδομένου σου θεοῦ. ἀλλὰ Νάβαλος μὲν κἂν ἀφεθῇ διὰ σὲ νῦν τῆς τιμωρίας οὐ φεύξεται τὴν δίκην, ἀλλ' ὁ τρόπος αὐτὸν ἀπολεῖ λαβὼν αἰτίαν ἄλλην."

300 One of Nabal's shepherds told his mistress, Nabal's wife, that when David sent to her husband he had received no civil answer but her husband had spoken shamefully to him, though David had taken such care to keep his flocks from harm, and that it would prove harmful to his master and herself. 301 When he said this, Abigail, for that was her name, saddled her donkeys and loaded them with all sorts of gifts, and went to David, saying nothing to her husband of what she was about, for he was in a drunken stupour. As she was going down the ravine, she met David who was coming against Nabal with four hundred men. 302 When the woman saw David, she jumped down from her donkey and fell on her face and bowed to the ground, and begged him not to take to heart the words of Nabal, for he resembled his name, which in the Hebrew means foolishness. So she apologised for not seeing the messengers he had sent. 303 "Forgive me then," she said, "and thank God, who has kept you from the guilt of shedding human blood. As long as you remain innocent, he will avenge you against bad men, and may the woes that await Nabal fall on the heads of your enemies. 304 Be gracious to me and do me the honour of accepting these from me, and for my sake lay aside your anger against my husband and his family. For mildness and mercy become you, as you are to be our king." 305 So he accepted her gifts and said, "Woman, it was only the mercy of God that brought you to us today, otherwise you would not have seen the dawn of another day, for I have sworn to destroy Nabal's house this night, leaving none of you, man or beast, alive to one who was wicked and ungrateful to me and my companions. Now, by God's providence you have forestalled me and cooled my anger. But if for your sake Nabal escapes punishment for the present, he will not evade justice, for his evil conduct will be his ruin another time."


[306] Ταῦτ' εἰπὼν ἀπολύει τὴν γυναῖκα: ἡ δ' εἰς τὸν οἶκον ἐλθοῦσα καὶ καταλαβοῦσα τὸν ἄνδρα μετὰ πολλῶν εὐωχούμενον καὶ κεκαρωμένον ἤδη τότε μὲν οὐδὲν τῶν γεγενημένων διεσάφει, τῇ δὲ ἐπιούσῃ νήφοντι ἅπαντα δηλώσασα παρεθῆναι καὶ πᾶν αὐτῷ νεκρωθῆναι τὸ σῶμα ὑπὸ τῶν λόγων καὶ τῆς ἐπ' αὐτοῖς λύπης ἐποίησε: καὶ δέκα οὐ πλείους ἐπιζήσας ἡμέρας τὸν βίον κατέστρεψεν ὁ Νάβαλος. [307] ἀκούσας δ' αὐτοῦ τὴν τελευτὴν ὁ Δαυίδης ἐκδικηθῆναι μὲν αὑτὸν ὑπὸ τοῦ θεοῦ καλῶς ἔλεγεν: ἀποθανεῖν γὰρ Νάβαλον ὑπὸ τῆς ἰδίας πονηρίας καὶ δοῦναι δίκην αὐτῷ καθαρὰν ἔχοντι τὴν δεξιάν: ἔγνω δὲ καὶ τότε τοὺς πονηροὺς ἐλαυνομένους ὑπὸ τοῦ θεοῦ μηδενὸς τῶν ἐν ἀνθρώποις ὑπερορῶντος, διδόντος δὲ τοῖς μὲν ἀγαθοῖς τὰ ὅμοια, τοῖς δὲ πονηροῖς ὀξεῖαν ἐπιφέροντος τὴν ποινήν. [308] πέμψας δ' αὐτοῦ πρὸς τὴν γυναῖκα συνοικήσουσαν καὶ γαμηθησομένην ἐκάλει πρὸς αὑτόν: ἡ δὲ ἀναξία μὲν εἶναι καὶ ποδῶν ἅψασθαι τῶν ἐκείνου πρὸς τοὺς παρόντας ἔλεγεν, ὅμως δὲ μετὰ πάσης τῆς θεραπείας ἧκε. καὶ συνῴκησε μὲν αὐτῷ ταύτην λαβοῦσα τὴν τιμὴν καὶ διὰ τὸ τὸν τρόπον σώφρονα εἶναι καὶ δίκαιον, τυχοῦσα δ' αὐτῆς καὶ διὰ τὸ κάλλος. [309] εἶχε δὲ Δαυίδης γυναῖκα πρότερον, ἣν ἐξ Ἀβισάρου πόλεως ἔγημε: Μελχὰν δὲ τὴν Σαούλου τοῦ βασιλέως θυγατέρα τὴν γενομένην τοῦ Δαυίδου γυναῖκα ὁ πατὴρ τῷ Φελτίῳ υἱῷ Λίσου συνέζευξεν ἐκ πόλεως ὄντι Γεθλᾶς.
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306 With this he sent the woman away. When she came home and found her husband feasting with many others and already drunk, at the time she told him nothing of the occurrence, but the next day, when he was sober, she told him everthing and at her words and the grief they caused him his whole body took on the look of a corpse. Nabal survived only ten days and then he died. 307 Hearing of his death, David said that God had justly avenged him on this man, since Nabal had died for his wickedness and was punished on account of him, while he had kept his own hands clean. He saw how the wicked are pursued by God, who does not ignore any man, but suitably rewards the good and punishes the wicked as they deserve. 308 He sent to the woman inviting her to come and live with him and be his wife. She answered the messengers that she was not worthy to touch his feet, but she came, with all her servants, and became his wife, in reward for her wise and righteous lifestyle, as well as for her beauty. 309 Now David had already married a wife from the city of Abesar; but Melcha, the daughter of king Saul, who had also been David's wife, had been given in marriage by her father to Phalti, son of Laish, who was of the city of Gallim.


[310] Μετὰ ταῦτά τινες ἐλθόντες τῶν Ζιφηνῶν ἀπήγγειλαν τῷ Σαούλῳ, ὡς εἴη πάλιν ὁ Δαυίδης ἐν τῇ χώρᾳ αὐτῶν καὶ δύνανται συλλαβεῖν αὐτὸν βουλομένῳ συνεργῆσαι. ὁ δὲ μετὰ τρισχιλίων ὁπλιτῶν ἐβάδιζεν ἐπ' αὐτὸν καὶ νυκτὸς ἐπελθούσης ἐστρατοπέδευσεν ἐπί τινι τόπῳ Σίκελλα λεγομένῳ. [311] Δαυίδης δὲ ἀκούσας τὸν Σαοῦλον ἐπ' αὐτὸν ἥκοντα πέμψας κατασκόπους ἐκέλευσε δηλοῦν αὐτῷ, ποῦ τῆς χώρας Σαοῦλος ἤδη προεληλύθοι. τῶν δ' ἐν Σίκελλα φρασάντων διανυκτερεύειν διαλαθὼν τοὺς ἰδίους εἰς τὸ τοῦ Σαούλου στρατόπεδον παραγίνεται ἐπαγόμενος τὸν ἐκ τῆς ἀδελφῆς αὐτοῦ Σαρουίας Ἀβισαῖον καὶ Ἀβιμέλεχον τὸν Χετταῖον. [312] τοῦ δὲ Σαούλου κοιμωμένου καὶ περὶ αὐτὸν ἐν κύκλῳ τῶν ὁπλιτῶν καὶ τοῦ στρατηγοῦ Ἀβενήρου κειμένων, ὁ Δαυίδης εἰσελθὼν εἰς τὸ στρατόπεδον τὸ τοῦ βασιλέως οὔτ' αὐτὸς ἀναιρεῖ τὸν Σαοῦλον ἐπιγνοὺς αὐτοῦ τὴν κοίτην ἐκ τοῦ δόρατος, τοῦτο γὰρ αὐτῷ παρεπεπήγει, οὔτε τὸν Ἀβισαῖον βουλόμενον φονεῦσαι καὶ πρὸς τοῦτο ὡρμηκότα εἴασεν, ἀλλὰ τὸν ὑπὸ τοῦ θεοῦ κεχειροτονημένον βασιλέα φήσας εἶναι δεινὸν ἀποκτεῖναι κἂν ᾖ πονηρός, ἥξειν γὰρ αὐτῷ παρὰ τοῦ δόντος τὴν ἀρχὴν σὺν χρόνῳ τὴν δίκην, ἐπέσχε τῆς ὁρμῆς. [313] σύμβολον δὲ τοῦ κτεῖναι δυνηθεὶς ἀποσχέσθαι λαβὼν αὐτοῦ τὸ δόρυ καὶ τὸν φακὸν τοῦ ὕδατος, ὃς ἦν παρ' αὐτῷ κείμενος τῷ Σαούλῳ, μηδενὸς αἰσθομένου τῶν ἐν τῷ στρατοπέδῳ πάντων δὲ κατακοιμωμένων ἐξῆλθεν, ἀδεῶς πάντ' ἐργασάμενος, ὅσα καὶ τοῦ καιροῦ δόντος αὐτῷ καὶ τῆς τόλμης διέθηκε τοὺς τοῦ βασιλέως. [314] διαβὰς δὲ τὸν χείμαρρον καὶ ἐπὶ τὴν κορυφὴν ἀνελθὼν τοῦ ὄρους, ὅθεν ἔμελλεν ἐξάκουστος εἶναι, ἐμβοήσας τοῖς στρατιώταις τοῦ Σαούλου καὶ τῷ στρατηγῷ Ἀβενήρῳ διανίστησιν αὐτὸν ἀπὸ τοῦ ὕπνου τοῦτόν τε ἐφώνει καὶ τὸν λαόν. ἐπακούσαντος δὲ τοῦ στρατηγοῦ καὶ τίς ὁ καλέσας αὐτόν ἐστιν ἐρομένου Δαυίδης εἶπεν: [315] "ἐγώ, παῖς μὲν Ἰεσσαίου, φυγὰς δὲ ὑμέτερος. ἀλλὰ τί δήποτε μέγας τε ὢν καὶ τὴν πρώτην ἔχων παρὰ τῷ βασιλεῖ τιμὴν οὕτως ἀμελῶς τὸ τοῦ δεσπότου φυλάσσεις σῶμα, καὶ ὕπνος ἡδίων ἐστί σοι τῆς τούτου σωτηρίας καὶ προνοίας; θανάτου γὰρ ἄξια ταῦτα καὶ τιμωρίας, οἵ γε μικρὸν ἔμπροσθεν εἰσελθόντας τινὰς ὑμῶν εἰς τὸ στρατόπεδον οὐκ ἐνοήσατε. ζήτησον οὖν τὸ δόρυ τοῦ βασιλέως καὶ τὸν φακὸν τοῦ ὕδατος καὶ μαθήσῃ, πηλίκον ὑμᾶς ἔλαθε κακὸν ἐντὸς γενόμενον." Σαοῦλος δὲ γνωρίσας τὴν τοῦ Δαυίδου φωνὴν καὶ μαθών, [316] ὅτι λαβὼν αὐτὸν ἔκδοτον ὑπὸ τοῦ ὕπνου καὶ τῆς τῶν φυλασσόντων ἀμελείας οὐκ ἀπέκτεινεν, ἀλλ' ἐφείσατο δικαίως ἂν αὐτὸν ἀνελών, χάριν ἔχειν αὐτῷ τῆς σωτηρίας ἔλεγε καὶ παρεκάλει θαρροῦντα καὶ μηδὲν ἔτι πείσεσθαι δεινὸν ἐξ αὐτοῦ φοβούμενον ἀναχωρεῖν ἐπὶ τὰ οἰκεῖα: [317] πεπεῖσθαι γάρ, ὅτι μηδ' αὐτὸν οὕτως ἀγαπήσειεν, ὡς ὑπ' ἐκείνου στέργεται: ὃς τὸν μὲν φυλάττειν αὐτὸν δυνάμενον καὶ πολλὰ δείγματα τῆς εὐνοίας παρεσχημένον ἐλαύνοι καὶ τοσοῦτον ἐν φυγῇ χρόνον καὶ ταῖς περὶ τὴν ψυχὴν ἀγωνίαις ἠνάγκασε ζῆσαι φίλων καὶ συγγενῶν ἔρημον: αὐτὸς δ' οὐ παύεται ὑπ' αὐτοῦ σωζόμενος, [οὐδὲ τὴν ψυχὴν] φανερῶς ἀπολλυμένην λαμβάνων. [318] ὁ δὲ Δαυίδης πέμψαντα ἀπολαβεῖν ἐκέλευσε τὸ δόρυ καὶ τὸν φακὸν τοῦ ὕδατος ἐπειπών, [ὡς] ὁ θεὸς ἑκατέρῳ τῆς ἰδίας φύσεως καὶ τῶν κατ' αὐτὴν πεπραγμένων ἔσται δικαστής, ὃς ὅτι καὶ κατὰ τὴν παροῦσαν ἡμέραν ἀποκτεῖναί σε δυνηθεὶς ἀπεσχόμην οἶδε."
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310 After this some Ziphites came and told Saul that David had again arrived in their region and that they could catch him with his help. So he came to them with three thousand warriors, and at nightfall encamped at a place called Sikella. 311 When David heard Saul was coming against him, he sent spies with orders to inform him of where Saul had arrived in the region, and when they said he was in Sikella, he secretly left his companions and came to Saul's camp, with Abishai, his sister Sarouia's son and Abimelech the Hittite. 312 Saul was asleep, with the warriors and Abner their officer lying in a circle around him. David entered the king's tent, but though he knew where Saul lay, he neither killed him with the spear that stood alongside him, nor let Abishai kill him, though he wanted to do so. He said it was a terrible thing to kill the one God had ordained king, even though he was wicked, for He who made him king would punish him in due time; so he held back. 313 Still, to show he could have killed him yet refrained from it, he took his spear and the jug of water from beside the sleeping Saul and went off unnoticed by any in the camp, who were all asleep, having done among the king's servants all that opportunity and his audacity let him do. 314 Having crossed the river and reached the top of the hill, from which he could still be heard, he called to Saul's soldiers and their commander, Abner, waking them from their sleep. When the commander heard it and asked who was calling him, David replied, 315 "It is I, the son of Jesse, whom you have on the run. Listen! How can a man of your dignity and rank in the king's court, take so little care of your master's person? Is sleep more important to you than his safety and your care of him? You deserve death by execution, for not noting how some of us entered your camp a little while ago, and got as far as the king himself. If you look for the king's spear and his jug of water, you will learn what could have happened in your camp without your knowledge." 316 When Saul recognised David's voice and understood how he had him in his power during his sleep when his guards neglected him, yet had spared his life when he could justly have killed him, he thanked him for sparing him and urged him to take heart and no longer fear harm from him, but to return home. 317 He was now convinced that he did not love himself as well as he was loved by him. He had expelled the one who could guard him but had proven goodwill towards him and had put him in exile for so long, in fear of his life, deprived of his friends and relatives, though he had spared his life when it was clearly in mortal danger. 318 David bade them send for the spear and the jug of water and take them back, adding that God would be the judge of the intentions and actions of each of them. "He knows that this day, when it was in my power to kill you, I did not do it."


[319] Καὶ Σαοῦλος μὲν δεύτερον διαφυγὼν τὰς Δαυίδου χεῖρας εἰς τὰ βασίλεια καὶ τὴν οἰκείαν ἀπηλλάσσετο, φοβηθεὶς δὲ Δαυίδης, μὴ μένων αὐτόθι συλληφθῇ ὑπὸ τοῦ Σαούλου, συμφέρειν ἔκρινεν εἰς τὴν Παλαιστίνην ἀναβὰς διατρίβειν ἐν αὐτῇ, καὶ μετὰ τῶν ἑξακοσίων, οἳ περὶ αὐτὸν ἦσαν παραγίνεται πρὸς Ἀγχοῦν τὸν Γίττης βασιλέα: μία δ' ἦν αὕτη τῶν πέντε πόλεων. [320] δεξαμένου δ' αὐτὸν τοῦ βασιλέως σὺν τοῖς ἀνδράσι καὶ δόντος οἰκητήριον ἔχων ἅμα καὶ τὰς δύο γυναῖκας Ἀχιμὰν καὶ Ἀβιγαίαν διῆγεν ἐν τῇ Γίττῃ. Σαούλῳ δὲ ταῦτ' ἀκούσαντι λόγος οὐκέτ' ἦν πέμπειν ἐπ' αὐτὸν ἢ βαδίζειν: δὶς γὰρ ἤδη κινδυνεῦσαι παρὰ μικρὸν ἐπ' ἐκείνῳ γενόμενον συλλαβεῖν αὐτὸν σπουδάσαντα. [321] Δαυίδῃ δ' οὐκ ἔδοξεν ἐν τῇ πόλει τῶν Γιττῶν μένειν, ἀλλ' ἐδεήθη τοῦ βασιλέως αὐτῶν, ἵν' ἐπειδὴ φιλανθρώπως αὐτὸν ὑπεδέξατο καὶ τοῦτο χαρίσηται, τόπον τινὰ τῆς χώρας δοὺς αὐτῷ πρὸς κατοίκησιν: αἰδεῖσθαι γὰρ διατρίβων ἐν τῷ πόλει βαρὺς αὐτῷ καὶ φορτικὸς εἶναι. [322] δίδωσι δὲ Ἀγχοῦς αὐτῷ κώμην τινὰ Σέκελλαν καλουμένην, ἣν βασιλεύσας ὁ Δαυίδης ἀγαπῶν ἴδιον κτῆμα ἐτίμησεν εἶναι καὶ οἱ παῖδες αὐτοῦ. ἀλλὰ περὶ μὲν τούτων ἐν ἄλλοις δηλώσομεν: ὁ δὲ χρόνος, ὃν κατῴκησε Δαυίδης ἐν Σεκέλλα τῆς Παλαιστίνης, ἐγένετο μῆνες τέσσαρες πρὸς ταῖς εἴκοσιν ἡμέραις. [323] ἐπερχόμενος δὲ λάθρα τοῖς πλησιοχώροις τῶν Παλαιστίνων Σερρίταις καὶ Ἀμαληκίταις διήρπαζεν αὐτῶν τὴν χώραν καὶ λείαν πολλὴν κτηνῶν καὶ καμήλων λαμβάνων ὑπέστρεφεν: ἀνθρώπων γὰρ ἀπείχετο δεδιὼς μὴ καταμηνύσωσιν αὐτὸν πρὸς Ἀγχοῦν τὸν βασιλέα, τὸ μέντοι γε τῆς λείας μέρος αὐτῷ δωρεὰν ἔπεμπε. [324] τοῦ δὲ βασιλέως πυθομένου, τίσιν ἐπιθέμενος τὴν λείαν ἀπήλασε; τοῖς πρὸς τὸν νότον τῶν Ἰουδαίων τετραμμένοις καὶ ἐν τῇ πεδιάδι κατοικοῦσιν εἰπὼν πείθει τὸν Ἀγχοῦν φρονῆσαι οὕτως: [ἤλπισε γὰρ οὗτος,] ὅτι Δαυίδης ἐμίσησε τὸ ἴδιον ἔθνος, καὶ δοῦλον ἕξειν παρ' ὃν ζῇ χρόνον ἐν τοῖς αὐτοῦ καταμένοντα.
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319 Having twice escaped the hands of David, Saul returned to his kingdom and his house. But David feared that Saul would capture him if he stayed there, and decided to go and live in the land of the Philistines. With his six hundred men he came to Achus, the king of Gitta, one of their five cities. 320 The king received him and his men and gave them living quarters. He also had with him his two wives, Ahinoam and Abigail, and lived in Gitta. When Saul heard it he made no further effort to send to him, or pursue him, because already he had been twice in danger from him, while trying to catch him. 321 David did not want to continue living in Gitta, but asked another favour from the king who had received him so kindly, to give him some place in that region to live in, as he was ashamed to go on living in the city at the king's expense. 322 So Achus gave him a village called Sikella, which later, when he was king, David and his sons were fond of and saw as their special inheritance and about which we shall say more elsewhere. David lived in Sikella, in the land of the Philistines, for four months and twenty days. 323 He covertly attacked the Geshurites and Amalekites, neighbours to the Philistines, laying waste their region and taking much booty of their beasts and camels, before returning. He refrained from enslaving people, fearing they would reveal him to king Achus, but sent part of the booty to him as a gift. 324 When the king asked whom they had attacked when they took the booty, he said they were to the south of the Jews, and people living in the plains. This got the agreement of Achus, who hoped that David now hated his own nation and would stay in his region and that he would have him at his service all his life.

Chapter 14. [325-378]
Saul and the witch of Dor. Samuel's ghost. Death of Saul in battle at Mount Gilboa.


[325] Κατὰ δὲ τὸν αὐτὸν καιρὸν τῶν Παλαιστίνων ἐπὶ τοὺς Ἰσραηλίτας στρατεύειν διεγνωκότων καὶ περιπεμψάντων πρὸς τοὺς συμμάχους ἅπαντας, ἵνα παρῶσιν αὐτοῖς εἰς τὸν πόλεμον εἰς Ῥεγάν, ἔνθεν ἔμελλον ἀθροισθέντες ἐξορμᾶν ἐπὶ τοὺς Ἑβραίους, ὁ τῶν Γιττῶν βασιλεὺς Ἀγχοῦς συμμαχῆσαι τὸν Δαυίδην αὐτῷ μετὰ τῶν ἰδίων ὁπλιτῶν ἐκέλευσε. [326] τοῦ δὲ προθύμως ὑποσχομένου καὶ φήσαντος παραστῆναι καιρόν, ἐν ᾧ τὴν ἀμοιβὴν αὐτῷ τῆς εὐεργεσίας καὶ τῆς ξενίας ἀποδώσει, ποιήσειν αὐτὸν καὶ φύλακα τοῦ σώματος μετὰ τὴν νίκην καὶ τοὺς ἀγῶνας τοὺς πρὸς τοὺς πολεμίους κατὰ νοῦν χωρήσαντας αὐτοῖς ἐπηγγείλατο, τῆς τιμῆς καὶ πίστεως ὑποσχέσει τὸ πρόθυμον αὐτοῦ μᾶλλον αὔξων.
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325 About the same time the Philistines resolved on war against the Israelites and sent to all their allies joining them in the war to gather at Reggan, and together suddenly attack the Hebrews. Then Achus the king of Gitta ordered David with his own warriors to help them against the Hebrews. 326 This he readily promised, saying that the time had come to repay him for his kindness and hospitality. So the king promised to make him his bodyguard after the victory, if the battle with the enemy turned out as they expected, promising this honourable mark of confidence in order to increase his ardour.


[327] Ἔτυχε δὲ Σαοῦλος ὁ τῶν Ἑβραίων βασιλεὺς τοὺς μάντεις καὶ τοὺς ἐγγαστριμύθους καὶ πᾶσαν τὴν τοιαύτην τέχνην ἐκ τῆς χώρας ἐκβεβληκὼς ἔξω τῶν προφητῶν. ἀκούσας δὲ τοὺς Παλαιστίνους ἤδη παρόντας καὶ ἔγγιστα Σούνης πόλεως ἐν τῷ πεδίῳ ἐστρατοπεδευκότας ἐξώρμησεν ἐπ' αὐτοὺς μετὰ τῆς δυνάμεως. [328] καὶ παραγενόμενος πρὸς ὄρει τινὶ Γελβουὲ καλουμένῳ βάλλεται στρατόπεδον ἀντικρὺ τῶν πολεμίων. ταράττει δ' αὐτὸν οὐχ ὡς ἔτυχεν ἡ τῶν ἐχθρῶν δύναμις πολλή τε οὖσα καὶ τῆς οἰκείας κρείττων ὑπονοουμένη, καὶ τὸν θεὸν διὰ τῶν προφητῶν ἐρωτᾷ περὶ τῆς μάχης καὶ τοῦ περὶ ταύτην ἐσομένου τέλους προειπεῖν. [329] οὐκ ἀποκρινομένου δὲ τοῦ θεοῦ ἔτι μᾶλλον ὁ Σαοῦλος κατέδεισε καὶ τὴν ψυχὴν ἀνέπεσε, τὸ κακὸν οἷον εἰκὸς οὐ παρόντος αὐτῷ κατὰ χεῖρα τοῦ θείου προορώμενος. ζητηθῆναι δ' αὑτῷ κελεύει γύναιόν τι τῶν ἐγγαστριμύθων καὶ τῶν τεθνηκότων ψυχὰς ἐκκαλουμένων ὡς οὕτως γνωσομένῳ, ποῖ χωρεῖν αὐτῷ μέλλει τὰ πράγματα: [330] τὸ γὰρ τῶν ἐγγαστριμύθων γένος ἀνάγον τὰς τῶν νεκρῶν ψυχὰς δι' αὐτῶν προλέγει τοῖς δεομένοις τὰ ἀποβησόμενα. μηνυθέντος δ' αὐτῷ παρά τινος τῶν οἰκετῶν εἶναί τι γύναιον τοιοῦτον ἐν πόλει Δώρῳ, λαθὼν πάντας τοὺς ἐν τῷ στρατοπέδῳ καὶ μετεκδὺς τὴν βασιλικὴν ἐσθῆτα δύο παραλαβὼν οἰκέτας, οὓς ᾔδει πιστοτάτους ἄνδρας, ἧκεν εἰς τὴν Δῶρον πρὸς τὴν γυναῖκα καὶ παρεκάλει μαντεύεσθαι καὶ ἀνάγειν αὐτῷ ψυχὴν οὗπερ ἂν αὐτὸς εἴπῃ. [331] τῆς δὲ γυναικὸς ἀπομαχομένης καὶ λεγούσης οὐ καταφρονήσειν τοῦ βασιλέως, ὃς τοῦτο τὸ γένος τῶν μάντεων ἐξήλασεν, οὐδ' αὐτὸν δὲ ποιεῖν καλῶς ἀδικηθέντα μηδὲν ὑπ' αὐτῆς, ἐνεδρεύοντα δὲ εἰς τὰ κεκωλυμένα λαβεῖν αὐτὴν ἵνα δῷ δίκην, ὤμοσε μηδένα γνώσεσθαι μηδὲ παρ' ἄλλον ἄγειν αὐτῆς τὴν μαντείαν, ἔσεσθαι δ' ἀκίνδυνον. [332] ὡς δὲ τοῖς ὅρκοις αὐτὴν ἔπεισε μὴ δεδιέναι, κελεύει τὴν Σαμουήλου ψυχὴν ἀναγαγεῖν αὐτῷ. ἡ δ' ἀγνοοῦσα τὸν Σαμουῆλον ὅστις ἦν καλεῖ τοῦτον ἐξ ᾅδου: φανέντος δ' αὐτοῦ θεασάμενον τὸ γύναιον ἄνδρα σεμνὸν καὶ θεοπρεπῆ ταράττεται, καὶ πρὸς τὴν ὄψιν ἐκπλαγέν, "οὐ σύ, φησίν, ὁ βασιλεὺς εἶ Σαοῦλος;" ἐδήλωσε γὰρ αὐτὸν Σαμουῆλος. [333] ἐπινεύσαντος δ' ἐκείνου καὶ τὴν ταραχὴν αὐτῆς ἐρομένου πόθεν γένοιτο, βλέπειν εἶπεν ἀνελθόντα τῷ θεῷ τινα τὴν μορφὴν ὅμοιον. τοῦ δὲ τὴν εἰκόνα φράζειν [εἰπόντος] καὶ τὸ σχῆμα τοῦ θεαθέντος καὶ τὴν ἡλικίαν [κελεύσαντος] γέροντα μὲν ἤδη καὶ ἔνδοξον ἐσήμαινεν, ἱερατικὴν δὲ περικείμενον διπλοίδα. [334] ἐγνώρισεν ἐκ τούτων ὁ βασιλεὺς τὸν Σαμουῆλον ὄντα καὶ πεσὼν ἐπὶ τὴν γῆν ἠσπάζετο καὶ προσεκύνησε: τῆς δὲ Σαμουήλου ψυχῆς πυθομένης, διὰ τί κινήσειεν αὐτὴν καὶ ἀναχθῆναι ποιήσειεν ἀνάγκην, ἀπωδύρετο τοὺς πολεμίους ἐπικεῖσθαι βαρεῖς αὐτῷ, αὐτὸν δὲ ἀμηχανεῖν τοῖς παροῦσιν ἐγκαταλελειμμένον ὑπὸ τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ μηδὲ προρρήσεως τυγχάνοντα μήτε διὰ προφητῶν μήτε δι' ὀνειράτων καὶ διὰ τοῦτο ἐπὶ σὲ τὸν ἐμοῦ προνοησόμενον κατέφυγον." [335] Σαμουῆλος δὲ τέλος αὐτὸν ἔχοντα ἤδη τῆς μεταβολῆς ὁρῶν "περισσὸν μέν, εἶπεν, ἔτι καὶ παρ' ἐμοῦ βούλεσθαι μαθεῖν τοῦ θεοῦ καταλελοιπότος αὐτόν: ἄκουέ γε μήν, ὅτι βασιλεῦσαι δεῖ Δαυίδην καὶ κατορθῶσαι τὸν πόλεμον, σὲ δὲ καὶ τὴν ἀρχὴν καὶ τὴν ζωὴν [336] ἀπολέσαι τοῦ θεοῦ παρακούσαντα ἐν τῷ πρὸς Ἀμαληκίτας πολέμῳ καὶ τὰς ἐντολὰς αὐτοῦ μὴ φυλάξαντα, καθὼς προεφήτευσά σοι καὶ ζῶν. ἴσθι τοίνυν καὶ τὸν λαὸν ὑποχείριον τοῖς ἐχθροῖς γενησόμενον καὶ σαυτὸν μετὰ τῶν τέκνων αὔριον πεσόντα ἐπὶ τῆς μάχης μετ' ἐμοῦ γενησόμενον."
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327 Saul the king of the Hebrews had expelled from the region the fortune-tellers and soothsayers and all who engaged in such arts, except the prophets. When he heard that the Philistines had arrived and were camped near the city of Shunem in the plain, he hurried out with a force to oppose them. 328 On reaching a mountain called Gelboue, he encamped opposite the enemy, but when he saw the enemy's army he was very anxious, as it seemed to him so numerous and superior to his own, and through the prophets asked God about the battle, to know the outcome in advance. 329 When God did not reply, Saul dreaded all the more and his courage fell, naturally foreseeing that harm would befall him without God at his side. But he told his servants to find out for him some woman ventriloquist who could call up the souls of the dead, so as to know how matters would turn out for him. 330 Ventriloquists of that kind can call up the souls of the dead and by them foretell future events to those who enquire of them. One of his servants told him that there was such a woman in the city of Dor, unknown to anybody in the camp, so Saul put off his royal robes and taking with him two of his most faithful servants went to Dor to the woman and begged her to bring up by divination the soul that he would name. 331 When the woman resisted, saying that she would not defy the king who had banished this sort of divining and that it was wrong for him to lay a trap for a woman who had done him no harm and get her punished for practicing a forbidden art, he swore that nobody would know of it and she would be denounced to nobody for her divining, so she could do so without risk. 332 By this oath he got her to fear no harm and asked her to bring up for him the soul of Samuel. Not knowing who Samuel was, she called him out of Hades. When he appeared and the woman saw a venerable man of divine form, she was disturbed and astounded and said, "Are you not king Saul?" for Samuel told her who he was. 333 When he admitted this as true and asked her why she was so troubled she said that she saw someone of godlike form ascending. When he asked her what he looked like, how he was dressed and how old he was, she told him he was an old man of noble countenance, wearing a priestly mantle. 334 By these signs the king knew that it was Samuel, and he fell down on the ground and greeted and worshipped him. When the soul of Samuel asked why he had disturbed him by having him brought up, he said he did so out of need, for his enemies were pressing upon him and he felt bereft in his God-forsaken situation, unable to get any prediction of the future from prophets or dreams, and that "this is why I take refuge in you, who always took care of me." 335 Seeing that Saul had reached the end of his life Samuel said, "It is useless for one whom God has forsaken to seek to learn from me. But listen, David is to be king and will end this war with success, 336 and you are to lose your throne and your life, because you did not obey God in the war with the Amalekites and did not keep his commandments, as I foretold to you while I lived. So know that the people shall be subjected to their enemies and you and your sons will fall in the battle tomorrow and then you shall be with me."


[337] Ταῦτ' ἀκούσας Σαοῦλος ἄφωνος ὑπὸ λύπης ἐγένετο καὶ κατενεχθεὶς εἰς τοὔδαφος, εἴτε διὰ τὴν προσπεσοῦσαν ἐκ τῶν δεδηλωμένων ὀδύνην, εἴτε διὰ τὴν ἔνδειαν, οὐ γὰρ προσενήνεκτο τροφὴν τῇ παρελθούσῃ ἡμέρᾳ τε καὶ νυκτί, ῥᾳδίως ἔκειτο νέκυς ὥς τις. [338] μόλις δὲ ἑαυτοῦ γενόμενον συνηνάγκασεν ἡ γυνὴ γεύσασθαι ταύτην αἰτουμένη παρ' αὐτοῦ τὴν χάριν ἀντὶ τῆς παραβόλου μαντείας, ἣν οὐκ ἐξὸν αὐτῇ ποιήσασθαι διὰ τὸν ἐξ αὐτοῦ φόβον ἀγνοουμένου τίς ἦν, ὅμως ὑπέστη καὶ παρέσχεν. ἀνθ' ὧν παρεκάλει τράπεζάν τε αὐτῷ παραθεῖναι καὶ τροφήν, ὡς ἂν τὴν ἰσχὺν συλλεξάμενος εἰς τὸ τῶν οἰκείων ἀποσωθῇ στρατόπεδον: ἀντέχοντα δὲ καὶ τελέως ἀπεστραμμένον ὑπὸ ἀθυμίας ἐβιάσατο καὶ συνέπεισεν. [339] ἔχουσα δὲ μόσχον ἕνα συνήθη καὶ τῆς κατ' οἶκον ἐπιμελείας καὶ τροφῆς ἀξιούμενον ὑπ' αὐτῆς, ὡς γυνὴ χερνῆτις καὶ τούτῳ μόνῳ προσαναπαυομένη τῷ κτήματι, κατασφάξασα τοῦτον καὶ τὰ κρέα παρασκευάσασα τοῖς οἰκέταις αὐτοῦ καὶ αὐτῷ παρατίθησι. καὶ Σαοῦλος μὲν διὰ τῆς νυκτὸς ἦλθεν εἰς τὸ στρατόπεδον.
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337 When Saul heard this he was speechless with horror and fell on the floor, either from his grief at what he had learned or from hunger, for he had taken no food the previous day and night, so he simply fell down like a corpse. 338 As soon as he came to, the woman implored him to eat in return for her risking the divination, which because of her fear of the king she dared not do until she knew who he was, but had then carried out. So she begged him to let a table and food be set before him so that he could regain strength and get safely back to his camp. Though in his dejection he resisted this, she insisted and finally persuaded him. 339 She owned one calf that she was very fond of and cared for and hand-fed, and though she was a working woman and it was the only thing she had, she killed it and prepared the meat and set it before his servants and himself. So Saul came to the camp while it was still night.


[340] Δίκαιον δὲ ἀποδέξασθαι τῆς φιλοτιμίας τὴν γυναῖκα, ὅτι καίπερ τῇ τέχνῃ κεκωλυμένη χρήσασθαι ὑπὸ τοῦ βασιλέως, παρ' ἧς ἂν αὐτῇ τὰ κατὰ τὸν οἶκον ἦν ἀμείνω καὶ διαρκέστερα, καὶ μηδέποτε αὐτὸν πρότερον τεθεαμένη οὐκ ἐμνησικάκησε τῆς ἐπιστήμης ὑπ' αὐτοῦ καταγνωσθείσης, οὐκ ἀπεστράφη δὲ ὡς ξένον καὶ μηδέποτε ἐν συνηθείᾳ γεγενημένον, [341] ἀλλὰ συνεπάθησέ τε καὶ παρεμυθήσατο καὶ πρὸς ἃ διέκειτο λίαν ἀηδῶς προετρέψατο, καὶ τὸ μόνον αὐτῇ παρὸν ὡς ἐν πενίᾳ τοῦτο παρέσχεν ἐκτενῶς καὶ φιλοφρόνως, οὔθ' ὑπὲρ εὐεργεσίας ἀμειβομένη τινὸς γεγενημένης οὔτε χάριν μέλλουσαν θηρωμένη, τελευτήσοντα γὰρ [αὐτὸν] ἠπίστατο, φύσει τῶν ἀνθρώπων ἢ πρὸς τοὺς ἀγαθόν τι παρεσχημένους φιλοτιμουμένων, ἢ παρ' ὧν ἂν δύνωνται λαβεῖν ὄφελος τούτους προθεραπευόντων. [342] καλὸν οὖν ἐστι μιμεῖσθαι τὴν γυναῖκα καὶ ποιεῖν εὖ πάντας τοὺς ἐν χρείᾳ γενομένους καὶ μηδὲν ὑπολαμβάνειν ἄμεινον μηδὲ μᾶλλόν τι προσήκειν τῷ τῶν ἀνθρώπων γένει τούτου μηδ' ἐφ' ᾧ τὸν θεὸν εὐμενῆ καὶ χορηγὸν τῶν ἀγαθῶν ἕξομεν. καὶ τὰ μὲν περὶ τῆς γυναικὸς ἐν τοσούτοις ἀρκεῖ δεδηλῶσθαι: [343] τὸν δὲ πόλεσι καὶ δήμοις καὶ ἔθνεσι συμφέροντα λόγον καὶ προσήκοντα τοῖς ἀγαθοῖς, ὑφ' οὗ προαχθήσονται πάντες ἀρετὴν διώξειν καὶ ζηλοῦν δόξαν καὶ μνήμην αἰώνιον παρασχεῖν δυνησόμενον, ποιήσομαι, πολλὴν καὶ βασιλεῦσιν ἐθνῶν καὶ ἄρχουσι πόλεων ἐπιθυμίαν καὶ σπουδὴν τῶν καλῶν ἐνθήσοντα, καὶ πρός τε κινδύνους καὶ τὸν ὑπὲρ τῶν πατρίδων θάνατον προτρεψόμενον, καὶ πάντων καταφρονεῖν διδάξοντα τῶν δεινῶν. [344] ἔχω δ' αἰτίαν τοῦ λόγου τούτου Σαοῦλον τὸν τῶν Ἑβραίων βασιλέα: οὗτος γὰρ καίπερ εἰδὼς τὰ συμβησόμενα καὶ τὸν ἐπικείμενον θάνατον τοῦ προφήτου προειρηκότος οὐκ ἔγνω φυγεῖν αὐτὸν οὐδὲ φιλοψυχήσας προδοῦναι μὲν τοὺς οἰκείους τοῖς πολεμίοις καθυβρίσαι δὲ τὸ τῆς βασιλείας ἀξίωμα, [345] ἀλλὰ παραδοὺς αὑτὸν πανοικὶ μετὰ τῶν τέκνων τοῖς κινδύνοις καλὸν ἡγήσατο εἶναι πεσεῖν μετὰ τούτων ὑπὲρ τῶν βασιλευομένων μαχόμενος, καὶ τοὺς παῖδας ἀποθανεῖν μᾶλλον ἀγαθοὺς ὄντας, ἢ καταλιπεῖν ἐπ' ἀδήλῳ τῷ ποδαποὶ γενήσονται τὸν τρόπον: διάδοχον γὰρ καὶ γένος τὸν ἔπαινον καὶ τὴν ἀγήρω μνήμην ἕξειν. [346] οὗτος οὖν δίκαιος καὶ ἀνδρεῖος καὶ σώφρων ἔμοι γε δοκεῖ μόνος καὶ εἴ τις γέγονε τοιοῦτος ἢ γενήσεται τὴν μαρτυρίαν ἐπ' ἀρετῇ καρποῦσθαι παρὰ πάντων ἄξιος: τοὺς γὰρ μετ' ἐλπίδων ἐπὶ πόλεμον ἐξελθόντας ὡς καὶ κρατήσοντας καὶ σῶς ἐπιστρέψοντας, ἐπειδάν τι διαπράξωνται λαμπρόν, οὔ μοι δοκοῦσι καλῶς ποιεῖν ἀνδρείους ἀποκαλοῦντες, ὅσοι περὶ τῶν τοιούτων ἐν ταῖς ἱστορίαις καὶ τοῖς ἄλλοις συγγράμμασιν εἰρήκασιν: [347] ἀλλὰ δίκαιοι μέν εἰσι κἀκεῖνοι τυγχάνειν ἀποδοχῆς, εὔψυχοι δὲ καὶ μεγαλότολμοι καὶ τῶν δεινῶν καταφρονηταὶ μόνοι δικαίως ἂν λέγοιντο πάντες οἱ Σαοῦλον μιμησάμενοι. τὸ μὲν γὰρ οὐκ εἰδότας τί μέλλει συμβήσεσθαι κατὰ τὸν πόλεμον αὐτοῖς μὴ μαλακισθῆναι περὶ αὐτόν, ἀλλ' ἀδήλῳ τῷ μέλλοντι παραδόντας αὑτοὺς ἐπ' αὐτοῦ σαλεύειν οὔπω γενναῖον, κἂν ἔργα πολλὰ διαπραξάμενοι τύχωσι: [348] τὸ δὲ μηδὲν ἐν τῇ διανοίᾳ χρηστὸν προσδοκῶντας, ἀλλὰ προειδότας ὡς δεῖ θανεῖν καὶ τοῦτο παθεῖν μαχομένους εἶτα μὴ φοβηθῆναι μηδὲ καταπλαγῆναι τὸ δεινόν, ἀλλ' ἐπ' αὐτὸ χωρῆσαι προγινωσκόμενον, τοῦτ' ἀνδρείου ἀληθῶς τεκμήριον ἐγὼ κρίνω. [349] Σαοῦλος τοίνυν τοῦτο ἐποίησεν ἐπιδείξας ὅτι πάντας μὲν προσήκει τῆς μετὰ τὸν θάνατον εὐφημίας γλιχομένους ταῦτα ποιεῖν, ἐξ ὧν ἂν αὑτοῖς ταύτην καταλείποιεν, μάλιστα δὲ τοὺς βασιλέας, ὡς οὐκ ἐξὸν αὐτοῖς διὰ τὸ μέγεθος τῆς ἀρχῆς οὐ μόνον οὐ κακοῖς εἶναι περὶ τοὺς ἀρχομένους, ἀλλ' οὐδὲ μετρίως χρηστοῖς. [350] ἔτι τούτων πλείω περὶ Σαούλου καὶ τῆς εὐψυχίας λέγειν ἠδυνάμην ὕλην ἡμῖν χορηγησάσης τῆς ὑποθέσεως, ἀλλ' ἵνα μὴ φανῶμεν ἀπειροκάλως αὐτοῦ χρῆσθαι τοῖς ἐπαίνοις, ἐπάνειμι πάλιν ἀφ' ὧν εἰς τούτους ἐξέβην.
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340 It is right to commend the woman for her generosity, for though the king had forbidden the use of the art which had bettered her situation and though she had never seen him before, she did not hold it against him to have condemned her sort of skill or refuse him as a stranger with whom she was not acquainted, 341 but gave him sympathy and comfort and urged him to do what he felt disinclined to and despite her poverty readily and kindly offered him the one thing she had, with no prospect of being rewarded for her kindness or seeking anything from him in the future, as his life was ending. But by nature people are eager to please those who provide them with goods, or readiest to serve those from whom they can benefit. 342 It is well to imitate her example and to do good to all who are in want and to regard nothing as better than this, or more beneficial to mankind, for it renders God favourable and ready to grant us good things. But let this be enough to say about the woman. 343 We move on to something of benefit to cities and people and nations and of concern to good men, to urge all to the practice of virtue, and show how to win glory and lasting fame, and impress on the national kings and the city rulers a zeal and diligence to do good, and encourage them to risk dangers and even die for their countries, and teach them to look down on all adversities. 344 I have good reason for reflecting in this way about Saul the king of the Hebrews, for though he knew what was coming to him and that he was soon to die as the prophet predicted, he did not seek to fly from death or love his own life so far as to betray his people to the enemy, or bring disgrace on his royal dignity. 345 Instead, putting himself, his household and his children at risk, he thought it nobler to die with them, fighting for his subjects, and even for his sons to die bravely than to leave them to an uncertain future, so that in place of successors and descendants they would win praise and an ageless memory. 346 Only such a one seems to me to be just, brave and wise and if one has grown or is growing into this, he deserves to be honoured by all for virtue. I do not think it right to call a man valiant who goes out to war hoping for success and a safe return after performing some splendid exploit, as so many historians and other writers tend to do when speaking of them. 347 While admitting that such men do deserve some praise, it is those like Saul who are truly brave and bold and scornful of adversity. Men who do not know how the war will turn out for them, even though they do not fear to take part in it and face an uncertain future, are still not eminently noble, even if they happen to do many great deeds. 348 But he who expects no good outcome and knows in advance that he must die after first being wounded in battle, and still is neither scared or terrified by his fate but to goes directly to it, knowing the result in advance, is the one that I reckon to have truly proven his valour. 349 This Saul did, demonstrating that all must act fittingly so as to win fame after they are dead. This applies especially to kings, who in their high stations should not think it sufficient not to do harm to their subjects, but should rule them more than moderately well. 350 I could say more about Saul and his courage, as the topic offers plenty of scope, but so as not to appear excessive in his praises I return to the history from which I digressed.


[351] Κατεστρατοπεδευκότων γὰρ τῶν Παλαιστίνων, ὡς προεῖπον, καὶ κατὰ ἔθνη καὶ βασιλείας καὶ σατραπείας ἐξαριθμούντων τὴν δύναμιν, τελευταῖος βασιλεὺς παρῆλθεν Ἀγχοῦς μετὰ τῆς ἰδίας στρατιᾶς καὶ Δαυίδης μετὰ τῶν ἑξακοσίων ὁπλιτῶν εἵπετο. [352] θεασάμενοι δὲ αὐτὸν οἱ στρατηγοὶ τῶν Παλαιστίνων, πόθεν εἴησαν ἥκοντες οἱ Ἑβραῖοι καὶ τίνων καλεσάντων ἠρώτων τὸν βασιλέα. ὁ δὲ Δαυίδην ἔλεγεν εἶναι τὸν φυγόντα Σαοῦλον τὸν ἑαυτοῦ δεσπότην καὶ πρὸς αὐτὸν ἐλθόντα δέξασθαι, καὶ νῦν τῆς χάριτος ἀμοιβὴν ἐκτεῖσαι βουλόμενον καὶ τιμωρήσασθαι τὸν Σαοῦλον συμμαχεῖν αὐτοῖς. [353] ἐμέμφθη δὲ ὑπὸ τῶν στρατηγῶν ἄνδρα παρειληφὼς ἐπὶ συμμαχίᾳ πολέμιον καὶ ἀποπέμπειν συνεβούλευον, μὴ καὶ λάθῃ μέγα δι' αὐτὸν κακὸν τοὺς φίλους ἐργασάμενος: καὶ γὰρ οὕτω παρέξειν καταλλαγῆναι πρὸς τὸν δεσπότην κακώσαντα τὴν ἡμετέραν δύναμιν. [354] ὃ δὴ καὶ προορώμενον εἰς τὸν τόπον ὃν ἔδωκεν αὐτῷ κατοικεῖν ἐκέλευον ἀποπέμπειν σὺν τοῖς ἑξακοσίοις ὁπλίταις: τοῦτον γὰρ εἶναι τὸν Δαυίδην, ὃν ᾄδουσιν αἱ παρθένοι πολλὰς μυριάδας Παλαιστίνων ἀπολέσαντα. ταῦτ' ἀκούσας ὁ τῶν Γιττῶν βασιλεὺς καὶ καλῶς εἰρῆσθαι λογισάμενος καλέσας τὸν Δαυίδην "ἐγὼ μέν, [355] εἶπε, μαρτυρῶ σοι πολλὴν περὶ ἐμὲ σπουδὴν καὶ εὔνοιαν καὶ διὰ τοῦτό σε σύμμαχον ἐπηγόμην: οὐ δοκεῖ δὲ ταὐτὸ τοῖς στρατηγοῖς. ἀλλ' ἄπιθι μεθ' ἡμέραν εἰς ὃν ἔδωκά σοι τόπον μηδὲν ὑπονοῶν ἄτοπον, κἀκεῖ φύλασσέ μοι τὴν χώραν, μή τινες εἰς αὐτὴν τῶν πολεμίων ἐμβάλωσιν. [356] ἔστι δὲ καὶ τοῦτο συμμαχίας μέρος." καὶ Δαυίδης μέν, ὡς ἐκέλευσεν ὁ τῶν Γιττῶν βασιλεύς, ἧκεν εἰς Σίκελλαν. καθ' ὃν δὲ καιρὸν ἐξ αὐτῆς συμμαχήσων τοῖς Παλαιστίνοις ἀπῆλθε τὸ τῶν Ἀμαληκιτῶν ἔθνος ἐπελθὸν αἱρεῖ τὴν Σίκελλαν κατὰ κράτος, καὶ ἐμπρήσαντες καὶ πολλὴν λείαν ἄλλην ἔκ τ' αὐτῆς ἐκείνης καὶ τῆς ἄλλης τῶν Παλαιστίνων χώρας λαβόντες ἀνεχώρησαν.
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351 When, as I said, the Philistines encamped and took stock of their forces in their several nations and kingships and satrapies, finally king Achus came with his army, followed by David with his six hundred warriors. 352 When the officers of the Philistines saw him, they asked the king where these Hebrews came from, and at whose invitation. He said it was David who had fled from his master Saul and whom he had welcomed when he came to him and that now he was prepared to return his favour and be their ally, to take revenge on Saul. 353 They complained of his accepting an enemy as an ally and advised that he be sent away in case by entertaining him he might unwittingly harm his friends, since "it gives him the chance of being reconciled to his master by injuring our army." 354 Forseeing this, they wanted him to send him away, with his six hundred warriors, to the place he had given him to live in, as this was the David whom the virgins sang about as having destroyed many thousands of the Philistines. When the king of Gitta heard this, he approved of it and called David and said to him, 355 "I can testify to your great diligence and goodwill in my regard and that is why I took you along as an ally, but this does not please the officers. So go this very day to the place I have given you, without fearing any harm, and take care of the region in case any of our enemies attacks it. This will be your part of the alliance." 356 So David came to Sikella at the orders of the king of Gitta, but while he was away to help the Philistines, the Amalekites had attacked and already taken Sikella and had burned it, and after taking a large amount of other booty from it and other parts of the Philistines' region, they left.


[357] Ἐκπεπορθημένην δὲ τὴν Σίκελλαν καταλαβὼν ὁ Δαυίδης καὶ διηρπαγμένα πάντα καὶ τὰς γυναῖκας [τὰς] ἑαυτοῦ, δύο γὰρ ἦσαν, καὶ τὰς γυναῖκας τῶν ἑταίρων σὺν τοῖς τέκνοις ᾐχμαλωτισμένας, περιρρήγνυται εὐθὺς τὴν ἐσθῆτα. [358] κλαίων δὲ καὶ ὀδυρόμενος μετὰ τῶν φίλων ἐπὶ τοσοῦτον παρείθη τοῖς κακοῖς, ὥστε αὐτὸν ἐπιλιπεῖν ἤδη καὶ τὰ δάκρυα, κινδυνεῦσαι δὲ καὶ βληθεὶς ὑπὸ τῶν ἑταίρων ἀλγούντων ἐπὶ ταῖς αἰχμαλωσίαις τῶν γυναικῶν καὶ τῶν τέκνων ἀποθανεῖν: αὐτὸν γὰρ τῶν γεγονότων ᾐτιῶντο. [359] ἀνασχὼν δ' ἐκ τῆς λύπης καὶ τὴν διάνοιαν πρὸς τὸν θεὸν ἀναστήσας παρεκάλεσε τὸν ἀρχιερέα Ἀβιάθαρον ἐνδύσασθαι τὴν ἱερατικὴν στολὴν καὶ ἐπερωτῆσαι τὸν θεὸν καὶ προφητεῦσαι, εἰ διώξαντι τοὺς Ἀμαληκίτας δίδωσι καταλαβεῖν καὶ σῶσαι μὲν τὰς γυναῖκας καὶ τὰ τέκνα, τιμωρήσασθαι δὲ τοὺς ἐχθρούς. [360] τοῦ δ' ἀρχιερέως διώκειν κελεύσαντος ἐκπηδήσας μετὰ τῶν ἑξακοσίων ὁπλιτῶν εἵπετο τοῖς πολεμίοις: παραγενόμενος δ' ἐπί τινα χειμάρρουν Βάσελον λεγόμενον καὶ πλανωμένῳ τινὶ περιπεσὼν Αἰγυπτίῳ μὲν τὸ γένος ὑπ' ἐνδείας δὲ καὶ λιμοῦ παρειμένῳ, τρισὶ γὰρ ἡμέραις ἐν τῇ ἐρημίᾳ πλανώμενος ἄσιτος διεκαρτέρησε, πρῶτον αὐτὸν ποτῷ καὶ τροφῇ παραστησάμενος καὶ ἀναλαβὼν ἐπύθετο, τίς τε εἴη καὶ πόθεν. [361] ὁ δὲ γένος μὲν ἐσήμαινεν Αἰγύπτιος ὤν, καταλειφθῆναι δὲ ὑπὸ τοῦ δεσπότου κατ' ἀρρωστίαν ἕπεσθαι μὴ δυνάμενον: ἐδήλου δ' αὑτὸν τῶν καταπρησάντων καὶ διηρπακότων ἄλλα τε τῆς Ἰουδαίας καὶ τὴν Σίκελλαν εἶναι. [362] χρησάμενος οὖν ὁ Δαυίδης τούτῳ ἐπὶ τοὺς Ἀμαληκίτας ὁδηγῷ καὶ καταλαβὼν [αὐτοὺς] ἐπὶ γῆς ἐρριμμένους, καὶ τοὺς μὲν ἀριστῶντας, τοὺς δὲ καὶ μεθύοντας ἤδη καὶ λελυμένους ὑπὸ τοῦ οἴνου καὶ τῶν λαφύρων καὶ τῆς λείας ἀπολαύοντας, ἐπιπεσὼν αἰφνιδίως πολὺν αὐτῶν φόνον εἰργάσατο: γυμνοὶ γὰρ ὄντες καὶ μηδὲν προσδοκῶντες τοιοῦτον, ἀλλὰ πρὸς τὸ πιεῖν καὶ εὐωχεῖσθαι τετραμμένοι πάντες ἦσαν εὐκατέργαστοι. [363] καὶ οἱ μὲν αὐτῶν ἔτι τῶν τραπεζῶν παρακειμένων ἐπικαταλαμβανόμενοι παρ' αὐταῖς ἀνῃροῦντο καὶ παρέσυρεν αὐτοῖς τὰ σιτία καὶ τὴν τροφὴν τὸ αἷμα, τοὺς δὲ δεξιουμένους ἀλλήλους ταῖς προπόσεσι διέφθειρεν, ἐνίους δὲ καὶ πρὸς ὕπνον ὑπὸ τοῦ ἀκράτου κατενηνεγμένους. ὁπόσοι δ' ἔφθασαν περιθέμενοι τὰς πανοπλίας ἐξ ἐναντίας τ' αὐτῷ στῆναι, τούτους οὐδὲν ἧττον εὐχερῶς τῶν γυμνῶν κατακειμένων ἀπέσφαττον. [364] διέμειναν δὲ οἱ σὺν τῷ Δαυίδῃ καὶ αὐτοὶ ἀναιροῦντες ἀπὸ πρώτης ὥρας ἕως ἑσπέρας, ὡς μὴ περιλειφθῆναι τῶν Ἀμαληκιτῶν πλείονας ἢ τετρακοσίους: καὶ οὗτοι δὲ δρομάσι καμήλοις ἐπιβάντες διέφυγον. ἀνέσωσε δὲ τἆλλα πάντα ἃ διήρπασαν αὐτῶν οἱ πολέμιοι καὶ τάς τε αὐτοῦ γυναῖκας καὶ τὰς τῶν ἑταίρων. [365] ὡς δὲ ἀναστρέφοντες ἧκον ἐπὶ τὸν τόπον, ἔνθα διακοσίους μὴ δυναμένους αὐτοῖς ἕπεσθαι καταλελοίπεσαν ἐπὶ τῶν σκευῶν, οἱ μὲν τετρακόσιοι τῆς μὲν ἄλλης ὠφελείας τε καὶ λείας οὐκ ἠξίουν αὐτοῖς ἀπομερίζειν: οὐ συνακολουθήσαντας γὰρ ἀλλὰ μαλακισθέντας περὶ τὴν δίωξιν ἀγαπήσειν ἀνασεσωσμένας τὰς γυναῖκας ἀπολαμβάνοντας ἔλεγον: [366] Δαυίδης δὲ πονηρὰν καὶ ἄδικον αὐτῶν ταύτην ἀπέφηνε τὴν γνώμην: εἶναι γὰρ ἀξίους, τοῦ θεοῦ παρασχόντος αὐτοῖς ἀμύνασθαι μὲν τοὺς πολεμίους, κομίσασθαι δὲ πάντα τὰ αὑτῶν, πᾶσιν ἐξ ἴσου τοῖς συστρατευσαμένοις μερίζεσθαι τὴν ὠφέλειαν, καὶ ταῦτ' ἐπὶ φυλακῇ τῶν σκευῶν μεμενηκότων. [367] καὶ ἐξ ἐκείνου νόμος οὗτος ἐκράτησε παρ' αὐτοῖς, ἵνα ταὐτὰ τοῖς μαχομένοις λαμβάνωσιν οἱ τὰ σκεύη φυλάσσοντες. γενόμενος δ' ἐν Σικέλλα Δαυίδης διέπεμψε πᾶσι τοῖς ἐν τῇ Ἰούδα φυλῇ συνήθεσι καὶ φίλοις ἀπομοίρας τῶν λαφύρων. καὶ τὰ μὲν περὶ τὴν Σικέλλων πόρθησιν καὶ Ἀμαληκιτῶν ἀναίρεσιν οὕτως ἐγένετο.
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357 When David found Sikella ravaged and despoiled and that his own two wives and those of his companions, as well as their children, had been taken prisoner, he rent his clothes, 358 and, weeping and grieving with his friends, he was so overwhelmed by his woes that finally even tears failed him. He ran the risk of being killed by his companions, upset by the capture of their wives and children and blaming him for it. 359 After recovering from his grief and raising his mind to God, he urged the high priest Abiathar to put on his priestly vestments and enquire of God and prophesy for him if He would let him pursue and overtake the Amalekites and save their wives and children and take revenge on the enemy. 360 When the high priest told him to follow them, with his four hundred men he marched quickly after the enemy, and when he reached a wadi called Besor and found a man wandering about there, an Egyptian by race and almost dead from want and famine, since he had been wandering about the desert for three days without food, he first gave him food and drink to refresh him and then asked him who he was and where he came from. 361 He told him he was an Egyptian by birth and had been left behind by his master when he was so sick and weak that he could not follow him. He also told him that he was one of those who had burned and looted, other parts of Judea and Sikella too. 362 David used him to guide him to the Amalekites, and when he overtook them as they sprawled on the ground, some of them at dinner and some drunk and disorderly with wine as they enjoyed their spoils and booty, suddenly he attacked them and made a great slaughter among them. As they were unguarded and expecting no such thing, and had turned to drinking and feasting, they were all easily destroyed. 363 Some of them who were caught reclining at table were killed in that position and their blood flowed over their food and drink. Others they killed as they were drinking a toast each other; and some when their full bellies had made them fall asleep. Even those who had time to put on their armour were killed with the sword, as easily as they did to those who were unarmed. 364 David's men continued the slaughter from the first hour until evening, so that not more than four hundred of the Amalekites were left, who escaped by getting on their dromedaries and camels; and so he recovered not only all the other spoils the enemy had taken, but his wives too and those of his companions. 365 When they reached the place where they had left the two hundred who were unable to follow them but were left in charge of the equipment, the four hundred did not wish to share with them their gains and booty. For not going along and being too feeble go with them in pursuit of the enemy, they said, they should be contented to have safely recovered their wives. 366 David dismissed this view as wrong and unjust, since when God had granted them the favour of revenge on their enemies and recovering all their property, they should distribute their gains equally with all, since the rest had stayed behind to guard the baggage. 367 So from then on it was their law that those who guarded the baggage should receive an equal share with the fighters. When David arrived at Sikella, he sent portions of the spoils to all who had shared in his lot and to his friends in the tribe of Judas. So ended the the looting of Sikella and the slaughter of the Amalekites.


[368] Τῶν δὲ Παλαιστίνων συμβαλόντων καὶ καρτερᾶς μάχης γενομένης νικῶσιν οἱ Παλαιστῖνοι καὶ πολλοὺς ἀναιροῦσι τῶν ἐναντίων, Σαοῦλος δὲ ὁ τῶν Ἰσραηλιτῶν βασιλεὺς καὶ οἱ παῖδες αὐτοῦ γενναίως ἀγωνιζόμενοι καὶ πάσῃ προθυμίᾳ χρώμενοι, ὡς ἐν μόνῳ τῷ καλῶς ἀποθανεῖν καὶ παραβόλως διακινδυνεῦσαι τοῖς πολεμίοις τῆς ὅλης αὐτοῖς δόξης ἀποκειμένης, οὐδὲν γὰρ τούτου περισσότερον εἶχον, [369] ἐπιστρέφουσι πᾶσαν εἰς αὑτοὺς τὴν τῶν ἐχθρῶν φάλαγγα καὶ περικυκλωθέντες ἀποθνήσκουσι πολλοὺς τῶν Παλαιστίνων καταβαλόντες. ἦσαν δὲ οἱ παῖδες Ἰωνάθης καὶ Ἀμινάδαβος καὶ Μέλχισος. τούτων πεσόντων τρέπεται τὸ τῶν Ἑβραίων πλῆθος καὶ ἀκοσμία καὶ σύγχυσις γίνεται καὶ φόνος ἐπικειμένων τῶν πολεμίων. [370] Σαοῦλος δὲ φεύγει τὸ καρτερὸν ἔχων περὶ αὑτόν, καὶ τῶν Παλαιστίνων ἐπιπεμψάντων ἀκοντιστὰς καὶ τοξότας πάντας μὲν ἀποβάλλει πλὴν ὀλίγων, αὐτὸς δὲ λαμπρῶς ἀγωνισάμενος καὶ πολλὰ τραύματα λαβών, ὡς μηκέτι διακαρτερεῖν μηδ' ἀντέχειν ταῖς πληγαῖς, ἀποκτεῖναι μὲν αὑτὸν ἠσθένει, κελεύει δὲ τὸν ὁπλοφόρον σπασάμενον τὴν ῥομφαίαν ταύτην αὐτοῦ διελάσαι, πρὶν ζῶντα συλλαβεῖν αὐτὸν τοὺς πολεμίους. [371] μὴ τολμῶντος δὲ τοῦ ὁπλοφόρου κτεῖναι τὸν δεσπότην, αὐτὸς τὴν ἰδίαν σπασάμενος καὶ στήσας ἐπὶ τὴν ἀκμὴν ῥίπτει κατ' αὐτῆς ἑαυτόν: ἀδυνατῶν δὲ μήθ' ἵστασθαι μήτ' ἐπερείσας διαβαλεῖν αὑτοῦ τὸν σίδηρον ἐπιστρέφεται, καὶ νεανίσκου τινὸς ἑστῶτος πυθόμενος τίς εἴη καὶ μαθὼν ὡς Ἀμαληκίτης ἐστὶ παρεκάλεσεν ἐπερείσαντα τὴν ῥομφαίαν διὰ τὸ μὴ ταῖς χερσὶν αὐτὸν δύνασθαι παρασχεῖν αὐτῷ τελευτὴν ὁποίαν αὐτὸς βούλεται. [372] ποιήσας δὲ τοῦτο καὶ περιελόμενος τὸν περὶ τὸν βραχίονα αὐτοῦ χρυσὸν καὶ τὸν βασιλικὸν στέφανον ἐκποδὼν ἐγένετο. θεασάμενος δ' ὁ ὁπλοφόρος Σαοῦλον ἀνῃρημένον ἀπέκτεινεν ἑαυτόν: διεσώθη δ' οὐδεὶς τῶν σωματοφυλάκων τοῦ βασιλέως, ἀλλὰ πάντες ἔπεσον περὶ τὸ καλούμενον Γελβουὲ ὄρος. [373] ἀκούσαντες δὲ τῶν Ἑβραίων οἱ τὴν κοιλάδα πέραν τοῦ Ἰορδάνου κατοικοῦντες καὶ οἱ ἐν τῷ πεδίῳ τὰς πόλεις ἔχοντες, ὅτι Σαοῦλος πέπτωκε καὶ οἱ παῖδες αὐτοῦ, καὶ τὸ σὺν αὐτῷ πλῆθος ἀπόλωλε, καταλιπόντες τὰς ἑαυτῶν πόλεις εἰς ὀχυρωτάτας ἔφυγον. οἱ δὲ Παλαιστῖνοι τὰς καταλελειμμένας ἐρήμους εὑρόντες κατῴκησαν.
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368 When the Philistines went to battle, they won after a hard struggle and killed many of their enemies. Saul the king of Israel and his sons fought bravely and with all their might, knowing that their glory depended entirely on dying honourably and risking the most extreme danger from the enemy, as they had nothing else to hope for. 369 So they brought upon themselves the full force of the enemy, until they were surrounded and killed, but not before killing many of the Philistines The sons of Saul were Jonathan and Abinadab and Melchisos, and when these were killed the Hebrew people were put to flight and all was disorder and turmoil and slaughter, as the enemy pressed upon them. 370 But Saul himself fled with a strong body of soldiers, but when the Philistines sent javelin-throwers and archers after them, he lost all but a few of his company. He himself fought brilliantly, and when he had been wounded so much that he was unable to hold out or fight any longer and still was unable to kill himself, he ordered his armour-bearer to draw his sword and run him through, lest the enemy take him alive. 371 As the armour-bearer did not dare to kill his master, he drew his own sword and pointing it toward himself, fell upon it, but as he could neither pierce himself or even by leaning against it, push the sword through, he turned round and asked a young man standing nearby who he was, and learning that he was an Amalekite, asked him to push the sword through him, as he was unable to do it with his own hands and so give him the kind of death he wanted. 372 This the man did and took the golden bracelet from Saul's arm and his royal crown from his head and ran away. When Saul's armour-bearer saw him killed, he killed himself, and none of the king's bodyguards escaped, for they all died upon the mountain called Gelboue. 373 When the Hebrews living in the valley beyond the Jordan and those whose cities were in the plain heard that Saul and his sons had fallen and the crowd with him were destroyed, they left their own cities and fled to those that were best fortified; and the Philistines, finding those cities deserted, came and lived in them.


[374] Τῇ δ' ἐπιούσῃ σκυλεύοντες οἱ Παλαιστῖνοι τοὺς τῶν πολεμίων νεκροὺς ἐπιτυγχάνουσι τοῖς Σαούλου καὶ τῶν παίδων αὐτοῦ σώμασι καὶ σκυλεύσαντες ἀποτέμνουσιν αὐτῶν τὰς κεφαλάς, καὶ κατὰ πᾶσαν περιήγγειλαν τὴν χώραν πέμψαντες, ὅτι πεπτώκασιν οἱ πολέμιοι: καὶ τὰς μὲν πανοπλίας αὐτῶν ἀνέθηκαν εἰς τὸ Ἀστάρτειον ἱερόν, τὰ δὲ σώματα ἀνεσταύρωσαν πρὸς τὰ τείχη τῆς Βηθσὰν πόλεως, ἣ νῦν Σκυθόπολις καλεῖται. [375] ἐπεὶ δὲ ἤκουσαν οἱ ἐν Ἰάβει πόλει τῆς Γαλααδίτιδος κατοικοῦντες, ὅτι λελώβηνται τὸν Σαούλου νεκρὸν καὶ τοὺς τῶν παίδων αὐτοῦ, δεινὸν ἡγησάμενοι περιιδεῖν ἀκηδεύτους ἐξελθόντες οἱ ἀνδρειότατοι καὶ τόλμῃ διαφέροντες, ἡ δὲ πόλις αὕτη καὶ σώμασιν ἀλκίμους καὶ ψυχαῖς φέρει, καὶ δι' ὅλης τῆς νυκτὸς ὁδεύσαντες ἦλθον εἰς Βηθσάν, [376] καὶ προσελθόντες τῷ τείχει τῶν πολεμίων καὶ καθελόντες τὸ σῶμα Σαούλου καὶ τὰ τῶν παίδων αὐτοῦ κομίζουσιν εἰς Ἰάβησαν μηδὲ τῶν πολεμίων αὐτοὺς κωλῦσαι τολμησάντων διὰ τὴν ἀνδρείαν. [377] οἱ δὲ Ἰαβησηνοὶ πανδημεὶ κλαύσαντες θάπτουσι τὰ σώματα ἐν τῷ καλλίστῳ τῆς χώρας τόπῳ Ἀρούρης λεγομένῳ, καὶ πένθος ἐφ' ἡμέρας ἑπτὰ σὺν γυναιξὶ καὶ τέκνοις ἐπ' αὐτοῖς ἦγον κοπτόμενοι καὶ θρηνοῦντες τὸν βασιλέα καὶ τοὺς παῖδας αὐτοῦ μήτε τροφῆς μήτε ποτοῦ γευσάμενοι.
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374 The following day, when the Philistines came to strip the slain bodies of their enemies, they got the bodies of Saul and of his sons and stripped them and cut off their heads, and sent all round their region the message that their enemies had fallen. They dedicated their armour in the temple of Astarte but hung their bodies on crosses outside the walls of the city of Bethsan, which is now called Scythepolls. 375 When the people in Jabis of Gilead heard that they had mutilated the corpses of Saul and of his sons, they reckoned it horrible to ignore this savagery and leave them without proper burial. So the bravest and boldest among them, in a city that held very stalwart men in both body and mind, journeyed all night and came to Bethsan 376 and approached the enemy's wall and took down the bodies of Saul and of his sons, and brought them to Jabesa, and because of their great courage, the enemy were unable to stop them. 377 So the Jabesans publicly mourned them and buried their bodies in the best place of their region, which was named Aroura, and with their wives and children publicly mourned them for seven days, beating their breasts and lamenting the king and his sons, tasting neither food or drink.


[378] Τοῦτο Σαοῦλος τὸ τέλος ἔσχε προφητεύσαντος Σαμουήλου διὰ τὸ παρακοῦσαι τοῦ θεοῦ τῶν ἐπ' Ἀμαληκίταις ἐντολῶν, καὶ ὅτι τὴν Ἀβιμελέχου τοῦ ἀρχιερέως γενεὰν καὶ Ἀβιμέλεχον αὐτὸν καὶ τὴν τῶν ἀρχιερέων πόλιν ἀνεῖλεν. ἐβασίλευσε δὲ Σαμουήλου ζῶντος ἔτη ὀκτὼ πρὸς τοῖς δέκα, τελευτήσαντος δὲ δύο καὶ εἴκοσι. καὶ Σαοῦλος μὲν οὕτω κατέστρεψε τὸν βίον.
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378 That is how Saul met his end, according to the prophecy of Samuel, because he disobeyed the commands of God about the Amalekites and for destroying the family of Abimelech the high priest, including Abimelech himself and the city of the high priests. That is how Saul died, after reigning for eighteen years in Samuel's lifetime, and for two after his death.