1. But Nicanor as he understood that Judas was in the places of Samaria, he purposed with all violence to join battle the day of the Sabbath.
2. But the Jews that of necessity followed him, saying do not so fiercely and barbarously, but give honour to the day of the sanctification, and honour him that beholdeth all things:
3. that unhappy man asked, if there were a power in heaven, that commanded the Sabbath day to be kept.
4. And they answering: There is the living Lord himself in heaven, the potent, that commanded the seventh day to be kept.
5. But he said. And I am potent upon the earth, that commanded arms to be taken, and the king's affairs to be accomplished. Nevertheless he obtained not to accomplish his counsel.
6. And Nicanor in deed puffed up with exceeding pride, had thought to have set up a common victorious memory of Judas.
7. But Machabeus always trusted with all hope that there would come aid from God to them.
8. And exhorted his company, that they should not fear at the coming of the nations, but should have in mind the aids given unto them from heaven, and now should hope that they should have the victory from the Almighty.
9. And speaking unto them out of the law, and Prophets, admonishing them also of the conflicts, that they had made before, he made them the more prompt:
10. and so their hearts being encouraged, withal he shewed the fraud of the Gentiles, and their breaking of oaths.
11. And he armed every one of them not with fence of buckler and spear, but with very good words, and exhortations, declaring a dream worthy to be credited, whereby he rejoiced them all.
12. And the vision was in this manner: Onias who had been the high-Priest, a good and benign man, reverent to behold, modest of manners, and comely of speech, and who from a child was exercised in virtues, that he stretching forth the hands prayed for all the people of the Jews.
13. After this that there appeared also an other man marvelous for age, and glory, and for the port of great dignity about him.
14. And that Onias answering said: This is a lover of his brethren, and of the people of Israel: this is he that prayeth much for the people, and for the whole city, Jeremy the Prophet of God.
15. And that Jeremy put forth his right hand, and gave unto Judas a sword of gold, saying:
16. Take the holy sword a gift from God, wherewith thou shalt overthrow the adversaries of my people Israel.
17. Being exhorted therefore with the words of Judas exceeding good, by which the courages might be stirred up, & the hearts of the young men strengthened, they resolved to fight, and to encounter manfully: that manhood might decide the matter, because the holy city, and the temple were in danger.
18. For there was less care for their wives, and children, and also for their brethren, and kinsmen: but the greatest and principal fear was for the holiness of the temple.
19. And they also that were in the city, took no little care for them that were to join battle.
20. And when they did all hope that judgement would be given, and the enemies were present, and the army was set in array, the beasts & horsemen disposed in convenient place,
21. Machabeus considering the coming of the multitude, and the variety of the provision of armour, and the fierceness of the beasts, stretching forth his hands unto heaven, he invocated our Lord, that worketh wonders, who not according to the might of arms, but according as it pleaseth him, giveth victory to the worthy.
22. And he said invocating in this manner: Thou Lord which didst send thy Angel in the time of Ezechias king of Juda, and didst kill an hundred eighty five thousand of the camp of Sennacharib:
23. and now o Dominatour of the heavens send thy good Angel before us, in fear and trembling of the greatness of thine arm,
24. that they may be afraid, which with blasphemy come against thine holy people. And he indeed ended his prayer thus.
25. But Nicanor, and they that were with him, with trumpets & songs came near.
26. But Judas, & they that were with him, invocating God by prayers joined battle:
27. with the hand indeed fighting, but in their hearts praying to our Lord, they overthrew no less than five and thirty thousand, being greatly delighted with the presence of God.
28. And when they had ceased, and returned with joy, they understood that Nicanor was slain, for all his armour.
29. A shout therefore being made, and a great cry, they blessed the Almighty Lord in their country language.
30. And Judas, who by all means was in body and mind ready to die for his citizens, commanded that Nicanor's head, & hand with the shoulder being cut off, should be carried to Jerusalem.
31. Whither when he was come, having called his countrymen, and the Priests to the altar, he sent also for them that were in the castle.
32. And shewing them the head of Nicanor, and the wicked hand, which he stretching forth against the holy house of Almighty God, had mightily bragged.
33. The tongue also of impious Nicanor being cut out, he commanded to be given piecemeal to the birds: and the hand of the furious man to be hanged up against the temple.
34. All therefore blessed the Lord of heaven, saying: Blessed be he, that hath kept his place undefiled.
35. And he hung up Nicanor's head in the top of the castle, that it might be an evident, and manifest sign of the help of God.
36. Therefore all by common counsel decreed, by no means to let pass this day without solemnity:
37. but to keep the solemnity the thirteenth day of the month Adar, which is called in the Syrian language, the day before Mardocheus' day.
38. These things therefore being done concerning Nicanor, and from that time the city being possessed of the Hebrews, I also in these will make an end of speaking.
39. And if well, and as is competent for a story, that myself also would: but if not so worthily it resteth to be pardoned me.
40. For as to drink always wine, or always water is hurtful, but to use now one now an other is delectable: so to the readers, if the speech be always exact, it will not be grateful. Here therefore it shall be ended.