1And again the sons of Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord, and he betook them in[to] the hands of [the] Philistines (for) forty years.
2Forsooth a man was of Zorah, of the kindred of Dan (And there was a man of Zorah, of the tribe of Dan), Manoah by name, and he had a barren wife. 3To which wife an angel of the Lord appeared, and said to her, Thou art barren, and without free children; but thou shalt conceive, and bear a son. 4Therefore be thou ware, lest thou drink wine, and cider (or cider), neither eat thou any unclean thing; 5for thou shalt conceive, and bear a son, whose head a razor shall not touch; for he shall be a Nazarite, that is, holy of God, from his young age, and from the mother’s womb (for he shall be a Nazarite, that is, holy to God, from his mother’s womb); and he shall begin to deliver Israel from the hand of [the] Philistines. 6And when she had come to her husband, she said to him, A man of God came to me, and he had an angel’s cheer, and he was full fearedful (and he had the face of an angel, and he was most frightening); and when I had asked him, who he was, and from whence he came, and by what name he was called, he would not say to me; 7but he answered thus, Lo! thou shalt conceive, and bear a son; (but) be thou ware, that thou drink no wine nor cider, neither eat any unclean thing; for the child shall be a Nazarite, that is, holy of the Lord, from his young age, and from the mother’s womb, till to the day of his death (for the child shall be a Nazarite, that is, holy to the Lord, from his mother’s womb, until the day of his death).
8Therefore Manoah prayed the Lord, and said, Lord, I beseech, that the man of God, whom thou sentest, come again, and teach us, what we ought to do of the child, that shall be born (what we ought to do with the child, who shall be born to us). 9And the Lord heard Manoah praying; and the angel of the Lord appeared again to his wife sitting in the field; forsooth Manoah, her husband, was not with her. 10And when she had seen the angel, she hasted, and ran to her husband, and told to him, and said, Lo! the man whom I saw before, (hath) appeared to me (again). 11Which rose (And he arose), and followed his wife; and he came to the man, and said to him, Art thou he, that hast spoken to the woman? And he answered, I am. 12To whom Manoah said, When thy word shall be fulfilled, what wilt thou, that the child do, either from what thing shall he keep himself? (and from what things should he keep himself?) 13And the angel of the Lord said to Manoah, Abstain he himself from all things which I spake to thy wife. (And the angel of the Lord said to Manoah, Thy wife should abstain from all the things which I spoke to her about.) 14And eat he not whatever thing cometh forth of the vine, drink he not wine, and cider, eat he not any unclean thing, and fulfill he; and keep that, that I commanded to him. (She should not eat anything that cometh forth from the vine, nor should she drink wine, or cider, or eat any unclean thing; she must fulfill, and obey what I have commanded to her.)
15Therefore Manoah said to the angel of the Lord, I beseech, that thou assent to my prayers, and we array to thee, that is, make ready to meat, a kid of the goats. (And then Manoah said to the angel of the Lord, I beseech thee, that thou assent to my prayers, and let us prepare a meal for thee, yea, a goat kid.) 16To whom the angel of the Lord answered, Though thou (shalt) constrain me, I shall not eat thy bread; but if thou wilt make (a) burnt sacrifice, offer thou it to the Lord. And Manoah knew not, that it was an angel of the Lord (For Manoah did not know that he was an angel of the Lord). 17And Manoah said to him, What name is to thee, that if thy word be fulfilled, we (can) honour thee? 18To whom he answered, Why askest thou my name, which is hid, either unknown? 19Therefore Manoah took a goat kid, and flowing sacrifices (and the proper grain offering), and he put (them) upon a stone, and he offered them to the Lord that doeth wonderful things. And he and his wife beheld. 20And when the flame of the altar ascended into heaven, the angel of the Lord ascended together in the flame (the angel of the Lord went up in the flame). And when Manoah and his wife had seen this, they felled low to the earth.
21And the angel of the Lord appeared no more to them. And at once Manoah understood, that he was the angel of the Lord. 22And he said to his wife, We shall die by death, for we have seen the Lord. 23To whom the woman answered, If the Lord would slay us, he would not have taken of our hands burnt sacrifices, and moist sacrifices, but neither he would have showed all these things to us, neither have said to us (of) those things, that be to coming. (To whom the woman answered, If the Lord intended to kill us, he would not have received out of our hands the burnt sacrifice, and the grain offering, nor would he have shown all these things to us, nor would he have told us of the things to come.)
24And so she childed a son, and called his name Samson; and the child increased (in age), and the Lord blessed him. 25And the spirit of the Lord began to be with him in the tents of Dan, betwixt Zorah and Eshtaol.
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