1A man was in Caesarea, Cornelius by name, a centurion of the company of knights, that is said of Italy; (There was a man in Caesarea, named Cornelius, who was a centurion, or the leader, of a group of soldiers called the Italian Company;) 2a religious man, and dreading the Lord (who revered the Lord), with all his household; doing many alms to the people, and praying (to) the Lord (for)evermore. (a religious man, who hath reverence for the Lord, with all his household, or with all his family; giving many gifts to the people, and always praying to the Lord.) 3This saw in a vision openly, as in the ninth hour of the day, (or at noon), an angel of God entering in to him, and saying to him, Cornelius. 4And he beheld him, and was adread (and was afraid), and said, Who art thou, Lord? And he said to him, Thy prayers and thine almsdeeds have ascended up into mind, in(to) the sight of the Lord. 5And now send thou men into Joppa, and call one Simon, that is named Peter. 6This is harboured at a man, Simon, (a) currier, (or a tanner), whose house is beside the sea. This shall say to thee, what it behooveth thee to do. 7And when the angel that spake to him, was gone away [had gone away], he called two men of his house, and a knight that dreaded the Lord (and a soldier who had fearful reverence for the Lord), which were at his bidding, (or that obeyed to him). 8And when he had told to them all these things, he sent them into Joppa.
9And on the day (pur)suing, while they made journey, and nighed to the city, Peter went up into the highest place of the house to pray, about the sixth hour. (And on the following day, while they journeyed, and approached the city, Peter went up to the highest place of the house to pray, at about noon.) 10And when he was hungered, he would have eaten. But while they made ready, a ravishing of the spirit, (or an excess of soul), felled on him; 11and he saw heaven opened, and a vessel coming down, as a great sheet with four corners, (or with four cords), to be let down from heaven into earth (to be let down from heaven onto the earth), 12in which were all (the) four-footed beasts, and (the) creeping [things] of the earth, and volatiles of (the) heaven(s), (or of the air) (and the birds of the air). 13And a voice was made to him, Rise thou, Peter, and slay, and eat. 14And Peter said, Lord, forbid [it], for I never eat any common thing, and unclean (or unclean). 15And again the second time the voice was made to him, That thing that God hath cleansed, say thou not unclean. 16And this thing was done by thrice; and anon the vessel was received again into heaven (and then at once, the vessel was taken up again into heaven).
17And while that Peter doubted within himself, what the vision was that he saw, lo! the men, that were sent from Cornelius, sought the house of Simon, and stood at the gate. 18And when they had called, they asked if Simon, that is named Peter, had there harbour. (And they called out, and asked if Simon, who was called Peter, was harboured there.) 19And while Peter thought on the vision, the Spirit said to him, Lo! three men seek thee. 20Therefore rise thou, and go down, and go with them, and doubt thou nothing, for I sent them. 21And Peter came down to the men, and said, Lo! I am (he), whom ye seek; what is the cause, for which ye be come? [what is the cause, for which ye have come?] 22And they said, Cornelius, the centurion, a just man, and dreading God, and having good witnessing of all the folk of Jews, took answer of an holy angel, to call thee into his house, and to hear words of thee. (And they said, Cornelius, the centurion, a righteous man, and revering God, and receiving good testimony from all the Jewish people, received a word from a holy angel, to call thee to his house, and to hear some words from thee.) 23Therefore he led them in, and received (them) in harbour; and that night they dwelled with him. And in the day (pur)suing he rose (And the following day he rose up), and went forth with them; and some of the brethren followed him from Joppa [and some of brethren from Joppa followed him], (so) that they be witnesses to Peter. 24And the tother day (And the next day), he entered into Caesarea. And Cornelius abode them, with his cousins, and necessary friends, that were called together. 25And it was done, when Peter was come in [when Peter had entered], Cornelius came meeting him, and fell down at his feet, and worshipped him (and honoured him). 26But Peter raised him (up), and said, Arise thou, also I myself am a man, as thou. 27And he spake with him, and went in, and found many that were come together. 28And he said to them, Ye know, how abominable it is to a Jew, to be joined either to come to an alien, (or to a foreigner); but God showed to me, that no man say a man common, either unclean (or unclean). 29For which thing I came, when I was called, without doubting. Therefore I ask you, for what cause have ye called me?
30And Cornelius said, Today, four days into this hour [From the fourth day passed till to this hour], I was praying and fasting in the ninth hour in mine house. And lo! a man stood before me in a white cloth (a man stood before me in a white cloak), 31and said, Cornelius, thy prayer is heard, and thine almsdeeds be in mind in the sight of God (and thy acts of charity be remembered before God). 32Therefore send thou into Joppa, and call Simon, that is named Peter; this is harboured in the house of Simon (the) currier, beside the sea. This, when he shall come, shall speak to thee. 33Therefore anon I sent to thee (And so at once I sent for thee), and thou didest well in coming to us. Now therefore we all be present in thy sight, to hear the words, whatever be commanded to thee of the Lord.
34And Peter opened his mouth, and said, In truth I have found, that God is no acceptor of persons (In truth I have found, that God hath no favourites among people); 35but in each folk he that dreadeth God, and worketh rightwiseness, is accept(able) to him. (but among every people, or in every nation, he who revereth God, and worketh righteousness, is acceptable to him.) 36God sent a word to the children of Israel, showing peace by Jesus Christ; this is (the) Lord of all things [this is the Lord of all men] (he is the Lord of everyone). 37Ye know the word that is made, (or the tidings that be told), through(out) all Judaea, and (that) began at Galilee, after the baptism that John preached, (yea, about) Jesus of Nazareth; 38how God anointed him with the Holy Ghost, and virtue; which passed forth in doing well [which passed forth in well-doing], and healing all men oppressed of the devil, for God was with him. (how God anointed him with the Holy Spirit, and with power; and he went forth doing good, and healing everyone oppressed by the Devil, for God was with him.) 39And we be witnesses of all things, which he did in the country of (the) Jews, and of Jerusalem; whom they slew, hanging on a tree. 40And God raised this in the third day, and gave him to be made known, 41not to all the people, but to witnesses before-ordained of God; to us that ate and drank with him, after that he rose again from death [after that he rose again from (the) dead]. 42And he commanded to us to preach to the people, and to witness, that he it is, that is ordained of God doomsman of the quick and of the dead. (And he commanded us to preach to the people, and to testify, that it is he, who is ordained by God to be the Judge of the living and of the dead.) 43To this all prophets bear witnessing [To this all prophets bear witness], that all men that believe in him, shall receive remission of sins by his name. (And all the prophets testify about him, that all who believe in him, shall receive forgiveness for their sins through his name.)
44And yet while that Peter spake these words, the Holy Ghost felled on all that heard the word. (And while Peter spoke these words, the Holy Spirit fell upon all who heard the word.) 45And the faithful men of (the) circumcision, that came with Peter, wondered, that also into nations the grace of the Holy Ghost is shed out. (And the faithful men of the circumcision, who came with Peter, wondered and were amazed, that the gift of the Holy Spirit was also poured out on heathen men, that is, upon the Gentiles.) 46For they heard them speaking in languages, (or with tongues), and magnifying God. Then Peter answered (Then Peter asked), 47Whether any man may forbid water, that these be not baptized, that have also received the Holy Ghost as we? (Would anyone forbid the water, with which these people can be baptized, yea, they who have also received the Holy Spirit like we have?) 48And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Then they prayed him, that he should dwell with them some days.
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