1And it was done, after that Saul was dead, that David turned again from the slaying of Amalek, and he dwelled two days in Ziklag. (And it was done, after Saul died, that David returned from the slaughter of the Amalekites, and he stayed in Ziklag for two days.) 2And in the third day a man appeared, coming from the tents of Saul with a cloth rent, and his head sprinkled with dust; and as he came to David, he felled upon his face, and worshipped him. (And on the third day a man appeared, coming from Saul’s camp with a torn cloak, and his head sprinkled with dirt, or with earth; and when he came to David, he fell on his face, and honoured him.) 3And David said to him, From whence comest thou? And he said to David, I fled from the tents of Israel. 4And David said to him, What is the word that is done there; show thou to me (What happened there; tell thou to me). And he said, The people of Israel hath fled from the battle, and many of the people felled (by the sword), and be dead; but also Saul, and Jonathan, his son, have perished. 5And David said to the young man, that told to him, Whereof knowest thou, that Saul is dead, and Jonathan, his son? (And David said to the young man, who told him this, How knowest thou that Saul, and his son Jonathan, be dead?) 6And the young man said, that told to him, By hap I came into the hill of Gilboa, and Saul leaned upon his spear; and chariots and horsemen nighed to him; (And the young man, who told him this, said, By happenstance I was on Mount Gilboa, and Saul was leaning on his spear; and the chariots and the horsemen came towards him;) 7and he turned behind his back, and saw me, and called. To whom when I had answered, I am present; (and he looked behind his back, and saw me, and called to me. To whom when I had answered, I am here;) 8he said to me, Who art thou? And I said to him, I am a man of Amalek. 9And he spake to me, (and said,) Stand thou upon me, and slay me (and kill me); for anguishes hold me, and yet all my life is in me. 10And (so) I stood upon him, and I slew him; for I knew that he might not live after the falling (for I knew that he could not live as soon as he fell); and I took the diadem, that was on his head, and the band from his arm, and I have brought them hither to thee, my lord.
11Forsooth David took and rent his clothes, and (likewise) [all] the men that were with him; 12and they wailed, and wept, and fasted till to eventide, on Saul, and Jonathan, his son, and on the people of the Lord, and on the house of Israel, for they had felled by sword. (and they wailed, and wept, and fasted until evening, for Saul, and for Jonathan, his son, and for the people of the Lord, and for the house of Israel, because they had fallen by the sword.) 13And David said to the young man, that told to him, Of whence art thou? And he answered, I am the son of a man comeling, of a man of Amalek. (And David said to the young man, who told him the news, Where art thou from? And he answered, I am the son of a newcomer, or of a foreigner, I am an Amalekite.) 14And David said to him, Why dreadest thou not to send thine hand, that thou shouldest slay the christ of the Lord? (And David said to him, Why fearest thou not, to put forth thy hand to kill the Lord’s anointed?) 15And David called one of his young men, and said, Go thou, and fall on him. And he smote that young man, and he was dead (And he struck that young man, and he died). 16And David said to him, Thy blood be on thine head; for thy mouth spake against thee, and said, I killed the christ of the Lord/I killed the anointed of the Lord.
17Forsooth David bewailed such a wailing on Saul, and on Jonathan, his son; (And David bewailed this wailing, or this lament, for Saul, and for his son Jonathan;) 18and he commanded, that they should teach the sons of Judah the bow, that is, the craft of shooting, as it is written in the Book of Just Men. (and he commanded, that they should teach the sons of Judah the use of the bow, that is, the craft of shooting arrows, as it is written in the Book of Jasher.)
19And (so) David said, Israel, behold thou, for these that be dead, be wounded on thine high places; the noble men of Israel be slain upon thine hills. How have fallen [the] strong men? (How the strong have fallen!)
20do not ye tell this in Gath, neither tell ye (it) in the way-lots of Askelon; lest peradventure the daughters of Philistines be glad, lest the daughters of uncircumcised men joy.
21Hills of Gilboa, neither dew, neither rain come upon you, neither be they the fields of first fruits (nor be ye the fields of the first fruits); for the shield of (the) strong men was cast away there, the shield of Saul, as if he had not been anointed with oil.
22Of the blood of slain men, of the fatness of strong men, the arrow of Jonathan went never aback, and the sword of Saul turned not again void.
23Saul and Jonathan, amiable, and fair in their life, were not parted also in their death; they were swifter than eagles, stronger than lions. (Saul and Jonathan were so loved, and delightful, in their lives, and were not separated in their deaths; they were swifter than eagles, stronger than lions.)
24Daughters of Israel, weep ye on Saul, that clothed you with fine red, and in (other) delights, that gave golden ornaments to your attire. (Daughters of Israel, weep ye for Saul, who clothed you in fine red, and in other delights, who gave gold ornaments for your attire.)
25How have strong men fallen down in battle? Jonathan was slain in the high places. (How the strong have fallen in battle! Jonathan was killed on the hills.)
26I make sorrow upon thee, my brother Jonathan, full fair and amiable more than the love of women; as a mother loveth her only son, so I loved thee. (I have sorrow for thee, my brother Jonathan, so delightful, and whose love for me was more than even the love of women; like a mother loveth her only son, so I loved thee.)
27How therefore felled down strong men, and armours of battle perished? (How the strong have fallen, and the arms, or the weapons, of battle have perished!)
Wycliffe’s Old Testament
Wycliffe’s New Testament
and JOHN PURVEY
A modern-spelling edition of their
14TH century Middle English translation,
the first complete English vernacular version,
with an Introduction by
TERENCE P. NOBLE
Used by Permission