Codex Junius 11 HTML version

Liber I.42
(ll. 1-7) Lo! far and wide throughout the earth we have heard how the laws of
Moses, a wondrous code, proclaim to men reward of heavenly life for all the
blessed after death, and lasting gain for every living soul. Let him hear who will!
(ll. 8-22) On him the Lord of hosts, the Righteous King, showed honour in the
wilderness, and the Eternal Ruler gave him might to work great wonders. He was
beloved of God, a lord of men, a wise and ready leader of the host, a bold folk-
captain. Affliction came upon the tribe of Pharaoh, the enemy of God, when the
Lord of victories entrusted to the bold folk-leader his kinsmen's lives, and gave
the sons of Abraham a dwelling and an habitation. Great was his reward! The
Lord was gracious unto him and gave him weapon-might against the terror of his
foes, wherewith he overcame in battle many a warrior, and the strength of hostile
(ll. 22-34) And first the Lord of hosts spake unto him and told him many wonders,
how the Triumphant Lord in wisdom wrought the world, and the compass of the
earth, and the arching heavens; and told His own name, which the sons of men,
wise patriarchs of old, knew not before, though they knew many things. And the
Lord honoured the leader of the host, the foe of Pharaoh, and strengthened him
with righteous strength on his departure, when, of old, in punishment that mighty
host was drenched with death.
(ll. 35-53) Wailing arose at the fall of their princes; their hall-joys were hushed
and their treasure was scattered. Fiercely at midnight He smote the oppressors,
slaying their firstborn, laying their watchmen low. Wide the destroyer's path, and
the way of the fell folk-slayer! The whole land mourned the dead. The host
departed. Loud was the voice of their wailing, little their joy! Locked were the
hands of the laughter-makers; the multitude had leave to go its way, a wandering
folk. The Fiend was robbed and all the hosts of hell. Heaven's might came upon
them; their idols fell. That was a glorious day through all the world when the host
went forth! Many a year the vile Egyptians suffered bondage, because they
thought for ever to refuse to Moses' kinsmen, if God would let them, their longing
for the journey of their heart's desire.
(ll. 54-62) The host was ready. The prince who led them was stalwart and bold.
He passed by many a stronghold with his people, leaders and lands of many
hostile men, by narrow, lonely paths and unknown ways, until at last they
marched, in armour, against the Ethiopian realm. Their lands were covered with
a cloud, their border-homes upon the mountain-slopes. Past these, with many a
hindrance, Moses led his people.