A Compendious and Most Marveilous History of the Latter Tymes of the Jewes Commune Weale

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Introductory notes

The Compendious and moste marveylous history of the latter times of the Jewes commune weale (1558) is a translation of the Hebrew Josippon or History of the Jews attributed to Joseph Ben Gorian by Peter Morwen (also spelt Morwent or Morwinge) . Morwen (1530?-1573) was a fellow of Magdalen College, but was ejected from his fellowship for his Protestant faith. He remained in Germany until the accession of Elizabeth I; subsequently he was appointed to various livings and became chaplain to Thomas Bentham, Archbishop of Lichfield. Morwen also translated the scientific works of the Swiss naturalist Conrad Gessner from Latin. The Compendious and moste marveylous history was translated apparently at the request of the printer Richard Jugge who published the work. The extracts exemplify episodes of war and dearth in Jewish history.

dious and most marveil
ous History of the latter tymes
of the Jewes commune weale, begin
nynge where the Bible or Scriptures
leave, and continuing to the utter sub
ersion and laste destruction of that
countrey and people: Written in He
brew by Joseph Ben Gorion, a noble
man of the same countrey, who sawe
the most thinges him selfe, and
was auctour and doer of a
great part of the same.
Translated into Englishe by
Peter Morwyng of Mag
dalen Colledge in
Anno Domini.


PUBLISHED FOR Richarde Iugge



The king repented him also that he had shed bloud without cause: and love so grew in his harte, that he was sicke and at deathes dore. Then Alexandra Marimies mother soughte meanes how to poyson hym. Whiche being uttered unto the kynge: he commaunded to apprehende her, and to kil her. In this maner dealt Herode with all the posteritie of the Machabees, leaving none alive that were called by y name. He put to death also Joseph the husband of Salumith. The king hadde two sonnes Alexander and Aristobulus, by Marimi his wyfe. They were both at Rome when their mother suffered, for their father the king had sent them thither to learne the Romain tongue. When thei heard tidinges of their mothers death, they wepte and mourned for her: hating their father for his crueltie. Sone after, ye king their father recovered of his sickenes, was established in his kingdome, builded stronge cities, and rose to great prosperitie. In the. [...]iii. yeare of his reigne, there fell a [Page]great dearth in the lande, wherfore the kinge tooke out of his treasure muche gold and silver, and precious stoones, wherwith he sent into Egipt and procured plentie of corne: and refresshyng with bread all that lackt and was in distres of hunger: yea, he spared not his owne propre goodes. And not onely to y Israelites shewed he this liberality: but also to all that came unto him out of other straunge nations, hearing of his renoume. Moreover in all his warres he had good fortune. Besides thys he thought it good to renew the house of the sanctuary: wherupon he deliberated with the Israelites, to have their advise for the building of it after the same quantitie and measure that Salolomon king of Israel builded it.



For whom soever the sedicious overcame: they set fire on their houses also, where throughe the fire tooke into the greate mens houses that were nye the temple, and into the store houses, wheras againste times of necessitie and besiegynges of the towne: were layed up in store, corne, wine, and oyle, to the number of a thousand and .iiii. hundred store houses, all filde ful of vit [...]ailes. For the Elders and other Godlye menne what time asVaspasian was in Galile, thei made up the dores of those garner houses, and laied in victuals into them sufficient for .ii. hundred thousand men for xx. yere, and now in this one battail of the sedicious, they were brente everye one sticke and stone, which was a spedye cause of famin and honger in Hierusalem. At the same tyme also the sedicious pulled downe and raced all the faire houses and goodlye buildynges, that there shoulde be no monument of anye noble house left to anye of the citizins of Hierusalem. So this you see at that time the Lorde visited the[Page]citizins of Jerusalem, with foure kinde of plagues, sworde, pestilence, hunger & fire: besides this, a fift also was added: the ruin and decay of all beautiful and gorgeous buildings. And wher soever a man turned him, there was nothing but desolation, pollucion (namely of the temple and all holye thinges) uproars, without al reast and refuge, no helpe, no succour, but every corner of Jerusalem was ful of howling and yellinge: wailinge and wepinge, sobbinge and sighinge of women and children. Here should ye heare the roaring and groaning of wounded men, not yet thorow deade: there the mourninge and lamentacion for the Elders that then were slaine by the sedicious: yonder children crying oute for hunger: to be short, most sorowful oppression of them that lived, done by the seditious. Such voices wer made every wher that happye and fortunate was he that before this daye died: and unhappye and in a woful case were all suche as remained alive to see this daye. Al these thinges[Page]when I Josephheard worde of: I tare my bearde with my handes, and cast ashes upon my head sittynge in greate sorow upon the ground, be wailing then miserie and calamitie of Hierusalem.

ANd this lamentation made Joseph upon Hierusalem, saiyng: Howe is the holy city layd wast, that was wont to be more happy and more renowmed then all the provinces upon the earth. How is the Citie that was heretofore in suche highnesse and dignitie, nowe brought under the foote throughe the sinnes of the citizins thereof: whereas sometime was the dwellynge place of the faiethfull, nowe beare rule there such men as provoke and stirre Gods wrathe agaynst it, and turne it awaye from their God, wastyng it as thieves. In the whiche sometime remained the brightnes of the Godheade, it is nowe become a by woorde and a mockynge stocke to the enemies, replenished with bloud of wounded and slaine men. In stede of mirthe, gladnesse, rejoysynge, harpes, and psalteries: is sorow,[Page]sighhyng, heart breakes, mournynge and pensifenes commen in place. Even as heretofore the priestes executed the service of the Lorde in offering sacrifices: so likewise now sedicious persons murther Godly and faithfull men. Where was wonte to be the dwellynge place of mooste wyse and prudente menne: nowe is it made a common hostrye of wicked murtherers and thieves.O Lord God of Israell, have not aungels in tyme paste come downe from heaven to earthe to fyghte thy battayles? have not the floudes of the seas persecuted them that persecuted thee? hath not the earth swalowed up them that dispysed thee? and the wyndes scattred a sunder, that made insurrectyons agaynst thee? and thunder from heaven destroyed thyne enymyes and starres have fought agynste thy fooes? What meanes thys therfore, and how commeth it to passe that thou hyddeste thy [...]ace from us? to whom haste thou betaken the shepe of thy pasture? Loke upon us oure GOD, and behoulde[Page]thy people and enher [...]taunce, that thou broughtest oute ofEgipt, with a mightie power, and a stronge hande: with wonders and signes, leadinge them untill this daye in thy faithe: take pitye upon them in thy mercye, and extende not thy wrathe against thy servauntes. Where arte thouMoysesthe sonne of Amram? stande up and se thy people and flocke of shepe, which thou feddest all thy life with thy wisdome: see howe Wolves and Lions teare them: see howe the Israelites are become foes of their owne lives & soules: Yea, wasters and destroiers are sprong up of their owne selves. Beholde the people of God, for whose sake thou liftedste up thy staffe over the sea, wherewith thou struckest and devidedst it, yt it was made drye ground, so that the Israelites passed throughe and escaped their enemies. Remember thy praier, when as in time of famin and lacke of soode, thou obteinedst for them meate from heaven, & at the same time when thei were wery of their lives for thirst,[Page]thou broughte [...]t water out of the moste hard rocke. Come forth Aaron, mooste holye prieste of God, that didst put thy self betwene the living and the deade, to tourne awaye the plague from Israel, and strokest the destroyer, that he should not come nie the livinge. Arise oute of thy grave thou Phinees, that moved with suche fervencye: didste revenge the glory and majesti of the lord God of Israel. Come and run through these seditious in thy fury, which murther the people of God & his priestes. Awake thouJosua, that didst throwe down the walles ofJericho, with the sound and shout of thy trompets, that the holy priestes helde in their handes. Come now and se thi people that thou madest to enherit manye nations, & to conquere most puissant kinges, howe they kil one an other, how they furder & helpforwarde the Idolater to rule & have the dominion of thy holy land that thou gavest thy people Israel to enherite. Whye sleapest thou kingeDavid, awake and come withthe sound of thy[Page]Psalterie and harpe, to singe the holy Psalmes. Aske account of thy swete wordes, y are ceased from the mouthes of this people, and oute of all mennes mouthes, because of the maliciousnesse thereof. See howe their princes be trans [...]o [...]me [...]into ennemyes and destroiers: and do not as thou didst (good kinge David) that diddest geve thine owne life for theirs, saiynge. Let thy hande (O Lord) be tourned against me, and against the house of my father: and do not fall upon thy people to destroye them. Where arte thou Eliseus? come and see what thou canste do, if thou canste reseve the remnaunte of Israel, and finde them anye gap to scape at. Didst not thou by thy praier bring the power of the Siriansto a towne of defence, and prevailedste againste them withoute dinte of sworde or battaile, and broughtest them downe, smitinge them with blindnesse, that they turned their enmity toward Israel into love? In deede thou waste he that vanquishedst theSirians by thy praier, that[Page] they fled for feare of the same. Now [...]therfore ye herdmen of Israell, assemble together & listen with your eares, and heare my wordes that I wil speake in your eares this day. Tel me, what is become of your praier ye ye have made for the people of Israel, to desende and turne away from then al wrath, indignation, tribulation, fury, & immissions of evil spirits? Howe is it y now ye see not y sanctuary turned into a vile sincke of blud? for ye dead bodies of priestes lie in the midst of it.



Knowe ye not howe that prayer avayled Gedeon, when as he wt 300. men vanquished the hole hoste of Median. Amalek& the people of ye east, if prayer had not helped him, I praye you what had 300. men ben able to do against so great a multitude? Mark (ye fond people) what chaunsed in the arke of the covenant of the Lorde, that the Philistinstoke away. Our fathers truly were not able to recover it by theyr swordes & force of armes. But with ye prayer that the just men of that adge made, the ark was brought agayn unto his place. Consider the times of Hezekia king of Juda, when as Sennacheribking ofAssur came up blaspheming, & rayling upon the sanctuary of ye Lord God of hostes, uttering ye pryd & malice of his hart: by what meanes was he overthrone? did our fathers overcome him by force of armes? Nay without doubte: but with prayer & supplication. ForHezekiay king, went & put on apparail mete for prayer: in sted of a shild[Page]he toke sack cloth, for a helmet, he cast dust upon his heed, & in steed of arrowes & a sword, he set hand upon prayer and supplieation. And the prayer yeHezekia made, mounted up so far as no arrow had bene ever able to flee: so that hys one petition and prayer overthrou 185. thousand most valeant men of ye hoste of Sennacherib. Forthermore the king of Juda & king of Israell & king of Edom joyning their powers together, invaded the Moabites, & in a wildernes, an unoccupied & baren dry land they wer in great peril for thyrst: what profited them their artillery & furniture of war? Did there not issue out for them at the instant praier of Eliseus a prophet & man of God plenty of waters in y desert & a broke in y wildernes? Came it not to passe also by y praier of y same Eliseus, yt a wonderful hurlybucly, a rumbling, & ratling of chariots of war & of horses was hard in y camps of ye Sirianesbesedging the citie ofSamaria: with y which noyse ySirianes being a ferd, fled, noman pursuing nor folowing them? ye know also ye by the prayer of the forsayd prophet,[Page]the famin and lack of victuales that was in the toune of Samaria, was turned into great abundaunce and plenty, in so much that thirty Ephas or mesures of fine meale were sold for one piece of silver. Do you not see (most folish men) how our forfathers had the victory ever by prayer? But let us come to ye beginning agayn, and speak of Moyses: what tyme as he held up his handes toward heaven, had not Israell the upper hand of theAmalekites, by his prayer?Josua also by hys prayer stayed the sunne and mone in the sight of the people of Israell, & the sunne stode stil in Gibeon, & the moone in the valey of Ailon, that the evening was chaunged into monday, and so Israel vanquished their enemies.Sampson also that moste valeant gyant, untill such time as he had sinned, did not God evermore heare his praier, & ever he gat ye victory therby? After he had once sinned, he decayed as any other meane person. Lykewyse also kynge Saule, al the while he walked perfectly[Page]and purely, his prayer encreased hys valeantnes and strenght: but after he had once sinned, God left hym & gave him over. David also king of Israel, of famous memory, from the time of his youth till his laste end, his valiantnes never fayled him, and why? bycause he alwayes was helped bi his praier, neither wolde he ever fight agaynst hys country men and native people whan asSaule persecuted him. Wherefore he prevayled agaynst his enemies, and bycause he absteyned to lay his handes upon hys brethern: therfore afterward all nations feared him. Dyd notAssa king of Juda accompanied with a smal numbre of men, make an expedition againste the Aethiopianes, and praing to the Lorde God, sayd on this wyse: We in dede, knowe not what to do, but oure eyes are bente upon thee, &c.



In the meane season fell a great darth & famin in Jerusalem, in so much that the seditions serched every mans house and sellar to find foode, which when a certaine housekeper would have withstood, he was killed emongst them. And thus they dealed with al men ye dwelled at Jerusalem, til al the victuales in the toune was spente, that men began to seek dong & very mans excrements to eat, wherfore much of the people dyed for hungar. Whosoever at that tyme could get any herbes, or rootes, myse, serpents or other creping worms what soever they wer to eat: he was counted happy, bicause he had found meat to susteyn & save his lyfe withall, in ye hard famin & terrible hungar. Moreover who so had any corne in store that no man knew of, he was afrayd to send it to the myll or bake it, bicause of the wicked nes of the seditious, lest they shuld take away from them their sustenance, wherfore many cat the dry corne unground in their sellers privily. At y tyme also were exceading rych men in Jerusalem, which stale meat one from an other,[Page]so that the father catcht meat from his son, the son from his father, ye mother snatch from her children, the children likewise from their mother, & suche as fled out at the gates or otherwyse let theim selves doun over the walles in y night time unwares to the seditious persons, the romains killed them without. This evil therfore & distres encreased so long, till y people had devoured al y ever crept on the earth from ye mouse to the spyder, from the nevet to the wesel, wherfore a more grevous pestilence folowed, wherof died innumerable emong the people of the lord, & there was noman to burye the. Whan they chaunsed to find any dead hors or other beast in the toun, a man shuld see many Israelites strive & fight for it, so y in such contencions also very many were slain, in al points like to samisshed ravens lighting upon a dead carcas. Therfore when dyvers men wyth their wives and children gat out of the city to gather herbes to eat, and chaunsed emong the Romaines, the Romayns laid hold of the litle children, and[Page]killed them saying: we wil dispatch these, lest whan they grow once to mans state, they make war upon us as their fathers do at this daye: so that manye whyche came out of the gates of the city now and then, the Romaines killed them & hanged them upon galowes over against the gates of Jerusalem to the number of five hundreth. After the same manerSchimeon, Jehochanan & Eleasar delt wyth those Romaynes whom thei could by any trayn, catch, even hanged them up, upon the walles.

Whosoever also they coulde perceyve wold flee unto the Romaynes, they hanged them lykewyse over the walles to the number of fyve hundreth. But Titus gave commaundements to al his soldiors, that no man upon paine of death shulde kyll anye of them that fled out of Jerusalem. For he tooke pitye of the Israelytes, & ceased not to speake frendly & lovingly to the Jerosolimites: so y he went yet once again to y walles, & spake unto the Jewes on this sorte. Hear, I beseche you, ye counsel of Joseph, and[Page] come to me, that you may live and not perishe utterly. Spare your people, why wil you oppresse them vexed with honger, thirst, pestilence, and besieging? But the sedicious hearing Titus speak, were wonderfully incensed, and intended to adde mischiefe uppon mischiefe, handelyng yet more cruelly the people of God. Moreover, they rayled at Titus to provoke him to anger, that he might leave of speakyng to the people, which had nowe almoste lefte their obedience and feare of the sedicious: wherefore the sedicious aunswered unto the Romaynes. It is better for us to dys for honger and to bee killed in this affliction, so to come to the blisse & light we hope for: then to live & see the most holy temple of God defiled and destroied. WhenTitus sawe this, he commaunded an yron ramme to be set to the wal to batter it, that he might deliver those pore wretches out of Schimeons,Eleasar, and Jehochanans handes, who held them in as captives. At the same time as they erected that engine to the walle, it[Page]from the citizins. Likewise of David our kinge we reade, how he entered alone into the campes of Gyantes, whiche when Abisai brother of Joab sonne of Servia hearde: he wente after hym, and received uppon his target a stroke that a gyant let flie at David, and killed the Gyaunt. But as concernynge Alexander, we know that he wanne the citie by none other meanes then thorowe the sinnes of the inhabitauntes and them that dwelt therin. Likewise also at this present the sinnes of the Jerosolimites have delivered and saved thee from death, that thou mightest be a snare of distruction to them hereafter. Wherefore thou shalt understand that the Romains have done wisely to abstaine from the assault at this tyme, because they knew thei should have to do with a moste valeaunt nacion, whiche thou havyng so well tried, maiest reporte and testifye when thou arte asked the question.



The nexte day folowing the Jewes brought forth the thre thousand nobles and gentlemen that thei had taken prisoners and plucked out of every one of them an eye, and cut of of every man the toon hand, after sent them back with shame & reproche to Titus camp. ThenTitus consulted with all hys princes, what were best to doo with the Israelites: & when every man had sayd his mind, he liked never a mans counsel, but said unto them. Well I have devised thys with my selfe, whyche I will folow, and no man shall bring me frome my purpose: we will kepe the siedge withoute any assaulte or skermishe, for theyr victuales fayled them long agoo, and so they shalbe famished. Besides thys, when they shall see us cease to fyght wyth them, they wyll fall at variaunce emongst them selves and kyll one an other. Thys counsell was[Page]thought good of all Titus Pryn [...]es, wherfore they beseged the toune as Titus commaunded, and closed up all the wayes of the Cytye rounde aboute, leaste the Jewes shuld as they had done before, come upon them at unwares. They appoynted more over, watche daye and nyght, to take heed that no man shoulde come out of the towne to gather herbes for theyr sustenance. Then encreased the hungar in Jerusalem, whych if it had not bene so grevous, the Citye had never bene wonne: for the souldiors of the toune were lyghter then Egles and fearcer then Lyones. There dyed therefore of the famin wonderfull manye of theJerosolomites, so that the Jewes coulde not fynde place to burye them in, they were so manye in every place of the toune. Many caste theyr dead folkes into theyr welles and tumbled in them selves after and dyed, many also made them selves graves, & went into them alyve,[Page]where they taried day and nyght, and dyed unmourned for.

For all mourning and customed lamentacion for the dead was lefte of, bycause of ye unmesurable famin, which was so great that it can not be tolde, and I can not reherse the thousand parte of the mischief that folowed of y hungar. Titus seyng the innumerable carcasses of the dead that were cast into the broke Kidron lyke dong, was wonderfully amased with feare, and stretched out his handes toward heaven, saing: lord God of heaven and earth, whome the Israelites beleve in, clense me from this sinne, whyche surely I am not the cause of, for I required peace of them, but they refused it, and they them selves are longe of thys mischeif, they have sinned againste their owne soules and lyves. I besech thee reken it not to me for a sinne, that the Jewes dye on this fashion.

AT that tyme certain wicked persones of Jerusalem slaunderedAmittaithe priest falsly, saing to captain[Page]Schimeon,beholdAmittai y hye priest which did let thee into the citye, goeth aboute to flee to the tentes of the Romaines. Thou haste experience of hys great wit and craft, how he also knoweth al the secret wayes unto ye toun, temple, and sanctuary, and who can tell whyther he wil bring the Romaines some night at midnight into the city? TherforeSchimeonsent certayn to fetchAmittai and his foure sonnes unto him. They y were sent, brought Amittai & but three of his sonnes, for one was fled to the Romaines & came to Joseph.Amittaiwith the other, when he came to Schimeons presence, he besought hym not to lyve, but that he might be put to death by & by, least he shulde lyve to see the death of hys children. But Schimeon was hard harted and wolde not be intreated, for it was Gods will thatAmittai shuld be punished, bycause he was the bringer of Schimeon into Jerusalem, & therfore fel he into his handes, which for good, rewarded him with evill.



Afterwarde, the Romaynes retourned backe from the Jewes, and woulde not fight hande to hande with them any more. ThenTitus commaunded the Walles of theAntochia to bee pulled downe further, that there might be place for his whole hoaste to enter. The famine in the mean season grew more grevous, so y no fode was nowe left. For the Jewes began now to issue out, and steale horses, asses, and other beastes what soever they coulde catch, even out of the Romayns campe, that they might dresse them some meat and susteine their lives. Which they doing often tymes, at length the Romaynes perceived it, & were wonderfulfye[Page] [...]pleased with the matter. Wherefore they set watch and ward round about the campe, lest by the disceit of the Jewes they should be spoyled of their cattel, so after y the Jewes could steale no more from thence. After warde notwithstanding they armed them selves, and issued out at the East gate, and brake the wal that Titus had raised for his owne safety, lest the Jewes should issue oute upon a sodayne, and come upon him at unwares. A sort of tall felowes therefore of the you the of the Jewes issued out by the breaches of the wall, & gate up quickly to the mount Olivet, wheras they found horses, mules, asses, and much other cattel, and fleyng their kepers, they drive them before them with great shoutes into the toune. The Romayns perceyving that, pursued them to fyghte. Wherefore the yonge men devi [...]e [...] theim selves into two bandes [...]the one to dryve the bootye, and the other to resist the Romaynes. So there was a sore [...]yght betwyxt theim, but the Jewes gate the upper hande, and[Page]went their wayes cleare with the [...]towarde Hierusalem.

For the [...]came for the constrayned by the necessitie of honger, and foughte for their livynge: the Romaynes had no cause to fyghte, save onelye for shame to [...]e their cattell driven awaye before their eyes, for otherwise they put not their lives in jeopardye to fight unto drathe as the Jewes did, yet was there many of the Komaynes slaine in that [...]ighte. The Jewes whyle the Romayns p [...]sued theim in dayne, they gate into the towne with their spoyle and [...], and straight waye tourned uppon [...]R [...]maines and drive the [...]n backe, pa [...]suynge theim agayne tyl they [...]the a [...]most toTitus [...]ampe, whiche when the other Romaynes sawe & the [...]ame to the rescue of their felowes [...] ed agayne those yong men to [...] to take them, albeit the [...]scaped [...] without any ha [...]the, save that [...]toke a boy and brought him unto [...]that toke this lad [...] So the Romaynes [...][Page]the Jewes at that tyme, and for a certaine token of victory, they hadde this y [...]g Jewe prisone [...].Pornasy toke hym was hadde in great estimation for that act, ofTitus and all the Romay [...]s. Titus appareled the boye, and committed hym to Josephus to kepe. This Boye had a brother amongest theim that escaped into the toune, a vyle personage evil favoured, and of a lowe stature, hys name was Jonathan. He seyng his brother taken, commeth forth to the tombe of Jochanan the hie priest over against Romaines, and cryed unto Titus, and to all the armye, saiynge: If there bee ever a manne amongest you, let hym [...]ome forthe unto mee, here wyll I aby [...] hym, and fyght with hym uppon thy [...]grounde: and ye shall knowe this daye whether the Romaynes or the Jewes be the better menne. The Romaynes dispised hym, yet durste they not meddle wyth hym, but said: if wee kyll hym, wee shall never bee counted the better menne for such an acte, and if he shoulde kyll anye of us,[Page]it shoulde be a great dishonoure to be slayne of a wretche.Jonathansayde to to the Romaynes, howe muche is the manhode of the Romaynes to bee regarded in our eyes? have not you bene flayne and put to flyght by us? What were you then if that bandes and companies of the Gentils came not everye daie to ayde you? If they had not helpt you, we had longe agoe eaten you up. We have destroyed our selves one an other with civil warres, so that we are but few left, but what are you? Who is so hardy of the best of you al [...]o come and declare his strength, and to fyght with me? I am one of the meanest and outcastes of the Jewes: picke you onte the chiefest and vale antest man amengest you all, and you shall knowe by and by whether parte is more valiant. When Jonathan hadde spaken thus proudelye, there came for the one of the most valiantst souldiers of ye Ro [...]ains whose name was Pornas, the same that had taken the brother of this Jonathan and brought him to Titus, he came no[Page]soner at Jonathan, but he was killed of him streight way, leaving behinde him a divers inheritaunce to Jonathan and the Romains. To Jonathana fame of fortitude & valeantnes: to the Romains shame and reproche. Whan Jonathan had so slain y Romain, y Jewes chaunged his name & called him Jehonathan, by an honorable name, & gave him a septer of dominion in his hand. ButJehonathan when he had gotten this victori, gave not ye glory to god, but ascribed it to his owne prowesse & became verye proud withal, he was not content with one victory, but would yet provoke the Romains, [...]ailing at them, and calling for an other valeaunte champion to be sent to him, that I might kil him (saith he) and [...]lare my force upon him And even as he said so, one of the Romains whose name was Poriian stroke him throughe with an arrowe at unwares and killed him. By whose example we may perceive. It is everye mannes parte chieflye to take hede, that when they overcome their enemies, they rejoyce not[Page]over muche, nor waxe proude for the matter, for who knoweth what ende they shal have themselves? These things done, the Jewes seing the walles of ye temple & the three walles that compassed the town to be raced & puld down, knowinge also that they had no hope left, nor any thing to truste unto: they consulted what were best to be done.

There was a greate huge house joyninge upon the side of the temple that king Salomon had builded, of a great height, whose walles also the kings of the second temple had raised on height, & had decked it with timber of firre and ceder trees. The Jewes went & anointed every where the Ceder timber of y house with brimstone and pitch aboundauntly. So whan the Romains came again to the temple to assault y Jewes, & pursued them unto that palaice: they entred the[Page]palaice after y Jewes (who went out again an other waye) & some climed up to the battlement [...]of y house, other set up ladders to scale it. Then rejoysed they wonderfully, saying the palaice is taken: now have the Jewes no place lefte to flee unto for refuge.

Thus whan ye Romains had gotten the palatre & the house was thr [...]nge ful of them, a certain Jewe a yong man, vowing him self desperatly to die, wente & shut up the palaice, & set fire of the gates before annointed with brimstone and pitch. And streightway the side walles of the house, & the whole building began to be on a light fire, so y the Romaines had no waye to escape because the fire compassed the house on everye side. The Jews also stode in harners reund about the house leaste anye of the Romaines should escape. Wherfore so many of ye Romaines as entred the house, were destroied with the fire, which was .xxii. M. men of war.Titus hearing the cry [...] of the Romaines that pearished in the fire, made spede with his men to come and rescue them, but they coulde not deliver them oute of the fire, it brente so vehementlye, whereforeTitus and his wepte verye bitterlye. The Romains that were above upon the house[Page]when they saw their masterTitus wepe, and the fire to be betwene them that nether coulde come at other: they caste them selves downe headlong from the batlementes of the house whiche was very hie, & died, saiynge: we wil die inTitus presence, to get us a name therby. The Jewes kepte the gates of the palace, & if they perceived any man go about to escape out of the fire, or to come downe of the batlementes: them they killed with their swordes. In that fire was a certain noble man of the stocke of kinges, whose name was Longinus, to whome the Jewes cried and flouted him, saying: come hither to us, y thou maist save thy life and not be destroied, but he durst not go out at the gate, fearing least the Jewes woulde kill him, wherfore he drue oute his sworde and thrust him self through before their faces. An other noble man also was in ye fire, whose name was Artorius, who loking forth from the top of the house, saw one of his deare frendes by Titus whiche was calledLucius: to whome[Page]Artorius called, saying. My deare frend Lucius get on thine armour and come hither, that I may leape downe uppon thee, and thou maiste receive me. If I die, I make thee mine heir, if thou die, thy children shal inherite my goodes. Wherfore Lucius ran and held his lap open at the house side, and Artorius lept down and light upon him wyth suche waight that they both died therwith.

Tituscommaunded the covenaunt that they two made before their death to be written upon a sword with bloud, and their frendship to be noted in the chronicles of the Romaines, that it mighte be an example to all men to learn true frendship by. At that time therfore the Jewes revenged them selves meetely wel upon the Romains. The fire brent till it came to the house of Chiskiiahukinge ofJehudah, and hadde almooste taken the temple of the Lorde, whiche the Romains seing, fled out of the toun and gate them to their tentes, a greate parte of theim beings destroied by the crueltye of the Jewes, so that fewe of them[Page]remained. The reste therefore lay stil in their siege rounde about the towne, sayinge: we shal not be able to win the town by the sword, but rather we must be fain to drive them to yeld by famin, wherefore they compassed it on every side. In the towne now had thei no victuals left.

THere was a certaine notable rich woman at Jerusalem, of a noble house also, whose name was Miriam, her dwelling was beyond Jordan, but when she perceived the warres to grow more & more in the time of Vaspasian, she came up with her neighbors to Jerusalem, bringing with her not only her men servants & women servants, & all her whole family: but also her goods & riches which were very great. When the hunger was grevous at Jerusalem, & the seditious wente from house to house to seeke meate, they came also to thys womans house & toke awaye from her by force al that ever she had, and lefte her nothinge remaininge.

After therefore she her selfe was oppressed wyth[Page]very greate hunger so that she wishte her oute of the worlde, but her time was not yet come to die. Wherfore that she mighte slake her hunger and su [...]eine her life, she began to scrape in the chaffe and duste for beastes dong but coulde finde none. She hadde one sonne, & when she saw the famin ware greater & greater upon her, she laid aside all womanhode and mercye, and toke upon her an horrible cruelty: for when she heard her boye weepe and aske for meat which she had not to geve him, she said unto him: What shal I do my sonne? for the wrath of God hath environed the whole city, in everye corner therof famin reigneth, without the citie the sword killeth up all, within we stand in feare of the sedicious, our ennemies prevail without, in the towne are fires, burnings, and ruines of houses, famine, pestilence, spoiling, and destroying, so that I can not fede thee my sonne. Nowe therefore my sonne, if I shoulde dye for hunger, to whom shoulde I leave thee, beinge yet a childe?


I hoped once that when thou shouldest come to mans state, thou shouldest have susteined mine age with meat, drinke, and cloth, and after when I shuld dye, to bury me honorablye, like as I was mineded to bury thee, if thou shouldest have died before me. But now misonne y art as good as ded al redi, for I have no meat to bringe thee up withall, because of this great famin and crueltye of the enemies both within and without. If thou shuldest die now amongst other, thou shouldest have no good nor honourable tombe as I woulde wishe thee. Wherfore I have thoughte good to chuse yt a sepulcher, even mine own body, least thou shouldest die, & dogges eate thee in the stretes. I will therfore be thy grave, & thou shalt be my fode. And for that, that if thou hadst lived & growen to mans state, thou oughtest by right to have nourished me: now feede me with thy fleshe, and with it sustein mine age, before that famine devoure thee: and thy body be consumed.

Render therfore unto thy mother ye whiche[Page]she gave unto thee, for thou c [...]mmest of her, and thou shalte returne into her. For I will brynge thee into the selfe same shop, in the whiche the breathe of life was breathed into thy nosethrilles, forasmuch as thou art my welbeloved sonne, whom I have loved alwayes with al my strength, be therfore meate for thy mother, an ignominy & reproch to the Sedicious that by violence have taken awaye our fode. Wherefore my sonne heare my voice, and susteine my soule and my life, and go to thend that is determined for thee by my handes, thy lot be in the gardein of Eden and Paradise, be thou meate for me, & a rebuke and shame to the Sedicious, that they maie be compelled to saie: Loe, a woman hath killed her sonne, and hath eaten him. So when she had thus spoken to her sonne, she toke the child, and turning her face awaye lest she should see him dye, she killed him with a sword, & after cut his body into certaine pieces, wherof some she rosted, some she sodde, & when she had eaten of them, she la [...]ed[Page]up the reste to kepe.

The savoure of the flesshe rosted when it came out into the streates to the People: they saied one to an other: see, here is a smell of coste meate, whiche thinge came unto the knowledge of the Sedicious [...]lengthe, who wente into the house of the woman, and spake roughlye unto her: whye shouldest thou have meate to live with, and wee dye for hong [...]r. The woman made theim aunswer [...], and saide unto theim. Be not dispeased I beseche you wyth youre handemaide for this, for you shall see I have kepte parte for you. Sit you downe therefore and I will bringe it you that ye maye taste thereof, for it is verye goodimeate.

And by and by shee layed the Table, and set before theim parte of the childes fleshe, saiy [...]ge: Cate I pray you, here is a childes hand, se here his fote, and other parts, and never report that it is any other womans child, but mine owne onelye Sonne that ye knewe with me, him I bare, and also have eaten part, and part I have kepte[Page]for you. Whiche when she hadde spoken, she burst out and wepte, saiynge [...] Oh my sonne, my sonne, howe swete waste thou to mee whiles thou yet li [...]edst, and now at thy death also thou art sweter to me then honye: for thou hast not onely sed me in this most gr [...] [...]ous famin, but thou hast defended me from the wrath of the sedicious, wherwith they were incensed towards me, when the smell of the meate broughte theim into my house.

Nowe therefore are they become my frendes, for they sit at my table, and I have made them [...]feast with thy fleshe. After she turned her to the sedicious, and bade them eat and satis [...]ie them selves, for why (saith she) shoulbe ye abhorre my meat which I have set before you? I have satisfied my selfe therwith, why therfore do you not eat of the flesh of mi son? Tast and se how swete my sonnes flesh is, I dare saye ye wil saye it is good meat. What neadeth pitie, ought ye to be more moned therewith then a womanne? If y [...]will in no wyse eate of the Sacrifice of[Page]my Sonne, when as I have eaten therof mi self. Shal not this be a shame for you, that I shold have a better hart and greater courage then you? Behold I have prepared a faire Table for you most valiant men, why eat ye not? Is it not a good feast that I have drest for you? and it was your wil that I should make you this feaste It hadde bene my parte rather to have bene moved with pitie of my sonne, then yours: and how chaunceth it therfore that ye are more mercifull then I?

Are not ye they th [...] spoiled my house, and lest me no kinde of sode for me and my sonne? Are [...]ye thei that constrained me to make you this feast, notwithstandinge the greate bonger that I have? Why then [...]at y [...] not therof, when as ye were the auct [...] [...] a nd the causers that I did this ded [...]? The Jewes hearynge this matter, were wonderfullye smitten into [...]dnesse: yea, even the governour [...] of the sedicious beganne to stoupe when they hearde of this, so that they all in a manner desiered deathe, they were so [Page]amased at this horrible Acte. Manye therefore of the common people stale out in the nigh [...]e forthe of Hierusalem with al their substance to the Romain{is} campe, and shewed Titus of this, who wepte thereat, and was sorie for the matter exceadinglye, holdynge up his bandes to heaven, and criynge.

Thou Lorde God of the worlde, God of this house, to whom al secrets are knowen, whiche also knowest my hearte, that I came not againste this Citie as desierous of Warres, but rather of Peace, whiche I ever offered them, but yet the citizins thereof evermore refused it, although I often times intreated theim, and when they distroied one another by their civil dissention, I would have delivered theim, but I founde theim alwaies like moste fierce & cruel beastes, nothinge sparinge theim selves, & this mischiefe is come nowe so farre, that a woman hathe eaten her owne flesshe, beinge driven therunto by moste extreame necessitie.

I have hearde, and my forefathers have tolde mee all the[Page]power that thou hast exercised in times past towardes them and their fathers, how thy name dwelt amongst then. For thou broughtest theim out of Egypte with a stronge hande and a stretched forth arm out of the house of bondage, [...]o whom also thou devidedst the Sea, led [...]est theim throughe it drye, & drownedst their enemies in the water: after comd [...]tedst thy people through the wil [...]erhes, and seddest theim with brea [...] from heaven, thou causedst quayles to [...]ee unto them, and broughtest out water out of the rocke for theim.

At [...]ength thou broughtest them into this holye lande by greate and terrible myracles and wonders. For thou [...] up the waters of Jordane, and ma [...]est [...]hen stande as it were on a [...]ape [...]yll they were passed over. Thou cau [...]edst the sunne and the mone also to stay [...]the [...] course for thy peoples sa [...]e, till they might vanquishe thei [...]en [...]emies, thou wouldest also ye thy name should [...] amongst theim, and thou gavest th [...] [...]his citye by inheritaunce. Some of [...][Page] thou chosedst for thy selfe to be Prophets, which might correct thy people, teache them, and lead them in the right waie, to geve them warnynge of miseries folowinge, that they mighte take hede of them selves, and beware of them. Thou stirredst up wise men amongest theim, [...]o the intente Israell myghte knowe what were to be done. Moreover, thou diddest chuse of them prieste [...]to serve thee, and to blesse thy people Israell. Certayne Godlye menne of theim also thou drewedst unto thee, [...]d in a fierye Charriot thou cariedst them up into Heaven.

Thou smotest the [...]en [...]es of the king of Assur, and kill [...]st in theim .clxxxv. thousand menne. These and divers other thinges have I learned of my forefathers: yea, and Josephe the priest, a verie wise manne [...]the tolde mee a greate part [...] of the [...].And now Lorde GOD, this people which I have stryven against I would have [...]aied they had trusted in th [...], but thou seest thei trust not in thy saving helth, but in their owne sword:[Page]thou seest also howe proude they be [...], notwithstandynge thy terrible signes and wonders wherewyth thou haste [...]ought on my side againste them, whiche they will not acknowledge. They saie, there is no manne can brynge us under, because the Lorde our God will helpe us, yea, althoughe we be wicked: for as muche as for oure sakes he rayned breade downe from heaven, devided ye sea, brought out waters forth of the harde Rocke, and staied the courses of the Sunne, and all for us. But they consider not that thou sh [...]w [...]st those sygnes to their fathers for their rightuousnesse sake, and those for their wickednesse thou haste stroken in [...] warres to make their [...], and to laye waste their Cities because of the multitude of their tra [...]g [...]i [...]ns, and howe thou haste consu [...] theim with Sworde, Pestilence, [...] Famine, that they are fayne to [...] the flesshe of their Childrene, and yet for all this, they can not finde in [...] har [...]es to humble themselfes before thee,[Page]nor to acknowledge thy hande to have bene upon them for their wicked workes.

I also have not bene very earnest upon them, but have assaulted them ever gentlely: If so be it, thou wilte not deliver them into my handes: I will get me hence from these moste wicked men, & [...]e away to save my life, leaste I also perish in their [...]innes, when y shalt overthrow them as thou didst overthrow Sedom and Amora. Wherefore, lo [...], I wil get me out of their land with spede leaste we be destroyed with the [...], for our even do see Sedom that was overthrown in their borders. Yea, but this hardeneth their hartes also like iron, that they fay: whye shoulde we not be like to our fathers in crueliye, for oure forefather.Abraham whan as he had but one onlye sonne, he wente to [...]acri [...]l [...]e him to the lord, whome in deede I do not apprehend for this fact, for whi? I know not the mistery therof, al be it I marvel, how he had no pitye on hys sonnne. I have heard also of a certaine king of theirs, who the same day he set[Page] forwardes to the warres, made a v [...] to God that he would offer a sacri [...]c [...], i [...]he should have good successe in hys warres, and when he returned from the warres, he offred to god his onl [...] dough ter, and so performed his vowe that he had vowed unto God.

And hereby I know they are men of a stubburn spirit, for what so ever it geveth them in their heades to do, y they thinke muste nedes be done, and they are a noughty people & most heinous sinners. Wherfore except thou [...] deliver them to [...]e: I wil gene over the wa [...]es, for I wil not be slain with them without al judgment. WhenTitus had saide all these things, he commaunded to bring an [...] Ram, & to bend it against the new [...]whiche the sedicious had raised, y they might batter the wal & cast it downe. Then came forth many of y nobles of the sedicious untoTitus & made peace with him, whome he placed amougst [...]his chiefe men.

SHortlye after ye Romains set a fire a certain gate of the temple, yt was shut,[Page]whose dore was covered over with silver, & while the timber of it burnt, the silver melted & ran upon the ground. So when y gate was open, there appeared the way which goeth to theSanctum sanctorum or holiest of all. Assone asTitus saw it, he honored it with great renerence, & forbad his people yt no man shuld come ni [...] it, saying: take heede ye medie not with this house, til we take further deliberation what is to be done in the matter. Wherfore he commaunded proclamation to be made throughoute at his camp [...]in this wise. Whosoever co [...]eth nie this Sanctuary, shal suffer death for it. He appointed also a strong kande of men to kepe the temple, that it were not suspended and unhalowed by anye of his.

But his princes and captain [...] answered him, [...]aiyng: unles this house be set a fire, thou shalt never subdue this people, so: asmuch as to save it they vowe them selves to die. NotwithstandingTituswold not harken to their counsel in this matter, but apointed of his soldiers & such Jews as[Page]had made peace wt him to kepe warde, gevinge them charge to kepe the temple and Sanctum sanctorum: leaste it should be polluted, till they had consulted uppon the matter. The sedicious Jewes that remained in Jerusalem, seing the Romains departed from the temple, and leavinge the kepers there behinde them, they ranne uppon them with their swords drawen and slue the ward up, lettinge never a man scape.

Which Titus hearing of, be broughte his whole army thither against the sed [...]ious and killed manye of them, the reast fled to the mount Sion. The next day the Romaines set fire uppon theSanctum sanctorum, laiyng woode to the dores that were covered over with gold, and then set fire in them. So after the gold waxte hote and the timber of the gates was once brent, the house of theSanctum sanctorumwas open (that all men might see it) the ninth daye of fift Moneth, which was the very same day that it was opened also in the time of the Chaldeis.

The Romaines therfore[Page]when they had gotten that dore of the Sanctum sanctorumonce open, and had entred into it, they made great joy and gave a greate shoute, whiles the Sanctum sanctorum was a fire: which when Titus saw, he made greate spede to quench the fire and to save the Sanctum sanctorum, but he could not do it, there did so many set it a fire in so manye places. Titus therefore cried unto them, that they shoulde not do so. But they would not heare him, for like as a vehement [...]oude of water breaketh all things, and driveth them down before it: even so with a furious violence the gentiles rushed upon the temple of the Lord, the fire flaminge nowe and then out of measure. ThusTitus cried upon them in vaine: wherefore when Titus sawe be coulde not refraine the people from the Sanctum sanctorum wyth wordes, he drve out his sword, blaming the captaines of his owne people, and the other that were not Romaines, he killed them, for they in time paste were more wont to spoile the temple,[Page]neverthelesse he could not stay them nor put them backe. He cried still uppon them notwithstanding, til be was so hoorse yt he coulde crye no longer. The priestes which were in theSanctum sanctorum withstode the Romaines stoutlye, till they were no more able to lift up their handes against them. Wherfore when the priestes sawe there was none other savegarde lefte, th [...]y lept into the [...]ire, and divers other Jewes with them, that had hid them selves in ye Sanctum sanctorum, and so were al brent together: for they said, what should we live anye longer, nowe that the temple is burnte?Titus ceased not to strike the people to chase them from the temple, that they should not sinne against theSanctum sanctorum, but no man wold obey him, for they were mani ye spoiled temple.Titus therfore being so weatye that al his strength failed him: he fell downe upon the ground. So whan he saw he prevailed nothing with his criyng: he left of forbiddinge them. After that the house of yeSanctum sanctorum was[Page]burnt:Titusrose & entred into it, and saw the glory & magnificence therof, and beleved that it was the house of the Lord, for as yet the fire had not utterly consumed al, so that be said: now I wel perceive that this is none other then the house of God and the dwelling of the God of heavens, nether was it for noughte that the Jewes stode so earnestly in the desence therof, nor the gentiles also did not withoute a cause send gold and silver to this temple from the furthest partes of the worlde.

For greate is the glorye of this temple, and it far passeth the temple of the Romains and al the temples of the gentiles that ever I sawe. The GOD of heaven whiche is the God of thys house, take vengaunce of the Sedicious, whose mischevous and heinous deedes have brought this evell upon it. The seditious ye yet remained at Jerusalem, seinge yeSanctum sanctorum to be burnt: thei set the rest of the temple a fyre theim selves, and al the houses also that were filled full of treasure, and all kynde of[Page]precious jewels: and where they knew there was yet some victuals lefte, they set it a fire also, leaste the Romaines should have any commoditye by it, saiyng: now that theSanctum sanctorumis wasted, what should we live any longer, and then what nede have we of anye other buildinges or houses? After this the Romains quenched the fire, & set up their Idols and images in the temple, and offred burnt offerings unto them, blaspheminge, railinge, & mocking at the Jewes and their lawes in the presence of their idols.



Thus was ye city of Jerusalem taken with al the precious thinges that were therein: andTituswent up to the mount Sion, [...]ke it, and raced the walles therof: upon a three daies after Jehochanansore vert with hunger, leste his place where he lucked, and came to Titus, fell downe afore him and kissed his feete, sayinge: save me. O Lord king.Tituscommauded him [...]be fettered with iran cheins, & when he had caused him to be carted about the campe so bound, & to be mocked of al men by the space of .vii. daies he commaunded to han [...] him, & so gate he a juste ende and fit rewarde for his cruelty.

After ware cameSchimeonalso forth of his den, being driven with famin, he had out on king ye apparel, & shewed him self a far of to ye Romaine host: who seing him, were afraide to go to him, but he called unto them & askt fo [...] s [...]me captaine. Then one came forth & s [...]id unto Schimeon, tel me who ye art, & I wil not kil thee.Schimeon answered [Page]therefore & tolde him, I am Schimeon, that sedicious Captaine of the Jewes whiche have made you so muche a not now I beseche thee shew me so muche savour as to bring me to Titus thi master, which he did. Titus therfore when he saw Schimeon, he commaunded him to be fast bound and to be [...]ed about the whole host, that he might be deluded & m [...]ckt. Afterward he was put to a fore death: first his head was striken of, then he was cut in many peces and cast unto dogges, so he died an abhominable death being punished for his iniquity.

THe number of the Jewes aswell citizens as other that came unto ye feast to Jerusalem, whiche were flaine partly by the Romaines, partly by the sedicious, duringe the whole tyme of those war [...]es was knowen to be thus many, eleventh hundreth thousand, besides them whose noumber was not knowen. Onlye they were counted which were slaine & buried, besides them also, that after ye death ofJehochanan &[Page] Schimeon, died with Eleasar the sonne of Anam the priest, whiche were not reckened. Thei that were led prisoners byTitus to Rome, were .xvi. M. men. Titus therfore with Joseph wente to Rome, leavingBonian Josephs brother at Jerusalem, who was appointed the chiefe priest of them that abode there, for that didJosephrequest of Titus, whiche he perfourmed. The sedicious were all slaine in that battaile whiche they toke in hand for the peoples sake, and the temple of the Lord. They also thatTitus toke prisoners were put to vile deathes. For he reserved many to be mocking stocks in every [...]wh [...]re he passed by in his way is Rome; and in every towne he commaunded some to be brought forthe and caste unto the Lions, til they were al confumed.

THere was a certain people [...]that time dwelling amongst the moutaines of Arat, that were calledAlamites,whose powerAlexander king of Macedoniafearinge, closed them in on every side. This people although they[Page]had no knowledge of the use of yron, nor armour, yet this was their maner: that one of them with a great poal burnt a little at the ende, would put to flight a hundred good souldiours, were they never so well appointed and armed.

Untill this yeare they were alwayes shut in: but now being oppressed with a great dearth and famine throughout al their land, they sent Embassadours to the People of Hurkan their neighbours, requiring them that thei would open the straightes of the mountayns, that they might come forth with their wives and children to seke theim fode. The Hurkans graunted their requests, opened them the entrances of the mountains. So they came forth, wanderyng here and there, and spoilynge diverse countreis, til at lengthe they toke their journeye towarde the Mountaines of the land ofMadai, where thei found horses, namelye in the desert of Madai, amongste the people of Araf, they gate those horses, leapt upon theim, and entred the lande ofMadai. The president[Page]or ruler of the countrey hearyng thereof, fled unto the highest hilles, leavyng his wife and children behinde hym for haste, he was fo afraied of the Alanits knowing their valiantnesse.

Sraight waye he sent to them imbassadours to make peace with them, and he woulde let them have vittails, upon this condicion that thei should not spoile his countrey. They made aunswere, if so be it he would kepe them, and let them have fode for the space of one monthe, syll the corne in their owne countrey were ripe: they would returne home agayne at the monethes ende. For we desire not (saie they) thy golde or silver, being men seperated from al entercourse & traffique with other people, nor anye thinge els then fode we seke not. This the ruler graunted theim, and let them have a certaine graine called Mill, sodden with one kinde of fleshe or other.

The number of them was vil, thousand a hundreth, fifty, and five thousande, a hundreth & forty persons. When the moneth was ended, and the Alanites[Page] understode the corn in theyr own countrey was ripe, they departed out of the lande ofMadaiaccordyng as they had sworne, & returned toward their owne countrey. And as they were a geynge homeward,Mithridatesking ofAraratcame against them to anoy them, mindyng to drive theim from his coastes, least they should waste his countrey.

Therefore while thei passed throughe his countrey going toward their own: Mithridatesmade warre upon them, but his men were beaten doun by the Alanites, like as Camelles fall uppon the ground when a strong man treades then downe. Then one of the yong men of the Alanites in dispite put a rope about Mithridates necke, and drew him after him unto his great shame.Mithridatesgate out his sworde, and cut a sunder the rope & fled. To whom the Alanites loking back, said: Go thy way, get thee home, and move no more warre upon us hereafter, for we were not minded to waiste thy Lande, nor to kyll thy people. For if we had ever intended it, could[Page]we not have done it longe ag [...]e, when as nothinge is betwixt us & you but the mountains of Ararat? But we wer of this minde, that we shold greatly offend to kil men of our owne shape & likenesse. Se now how Alexander which went about to subdue the hole earth, & to declare his power, closed us up with in our land, why? bicause he was afraied we should come out upon him. But we laught him to scorne when hee did it. If we had listed, we could have letted him from shutting us in, & to make no peace with him, but we forced not of his doinges. For it is our custome to kepe us within our countrey, we seke none other land, when as our own land is better then anye other. It pleased us well that he inclosed us, that the cruell wild beasts which are in the mountains of Ararat could have no passage to us. The cause whi we came out now was nothing els, then that we were greved with a great derth: and we determined to be no lenger from home, then tyll our owne fruites waxte ripe, and then to[Page]returne as you se we do. If we had bene minded to winne your lande, had we not bene able utterly to have overcome you, and to have gotten the dominion over you?

But nether ye nor your countrey did ever delite us greatly, for our maners differ farre from yours. Beholde the kinge of Madai, when he had kepte us for a moneth, we did him no harme, we are not wonte to hurt men as ye are, that can not be content with your owne state, but must encroche upon other mennes inheritaunce. Now therfore go and returne to your owne countrey, and so wil we to ours, without doing you any more harme: wherfore ye nede not be afrayed of us. So the Alamites went home to their own countreis, having slain ofMithridates people .ccc. thousande men, and never a one of their owne was killed.Titus hearinge of this, was desis [...]ous to go unto theim, to shewe theim his valeantnesse, but he coulde not doe it, because al his best men were spent in the warres at Hierusalem. Wherefore[Page]he determined to return to Rome after he had take Jerusalem, wher he abode as yet besides the Antochia. There he had intelligence that divers of the Jewes were gathered together, with whom was Eleasar the sonne of Anani the priest, who during the siege, fled unto a certain castle called Mezira, wherupon manye of the Jewes resorted to him. Titus hearinge this, that many had joyned them selves to Eleasar, feared least after his departure, Eleasar woulde from thence make a rode & take Jerusalem, so kill up al the Romains, & be an offence to the Romaine Empire. Wherfore he made out against him, & sent thither one Silcham a noble manne of Rome, with a great hoste to besiege Mezira, but he coulde not get it. Wherfore he sente unto Titus for an yron ramme to batter the Walles wythall. Whiche after he hadde received, hee beat doune the walles of Meziratherwyth. The Jewes seing that, raysed a great coun [...]ermure within of wodde and [...]ymber, whiche the Romaynes set[Page]fire in, and bu [...]nt. After that they assaulted the towne from mornynge tyll nyght, at what tyme the R [...]maynes left of, supposynge they were not able to prevayle againste Eleasars defence in the darke.



Nowe therfore, my brethren, if we also shal live anye longer, our life shalbe a miserable life, and our daies, daies of vanitye and travel: yea, our soule as long as it shal remain in this body, it shalbe tossed with great [...]r [...]bulation: but if it once go forth, then shall it rejoyse and never be afraide. And all the dayes that it is in the bodye, it never linneth weepinge and mourninge, for it is the spirite of life, whiche is hedged in within the bodye, sinnewes, bones, and other members, none otherwise then if it were bounde with chaines. The spirite is also that which quickneth the fleshe, that is taken of the duste of the earthe, for fleshe can not quicken the spirite.

Besides this, the spirite is that which observeth and marketh the fleshe, and searcheth the workes therof, so longe as it is in the body. Yea, the fleshe can not se the spirite, but the spirite seeth the fleshe alwayes, neither is there anye member[Page]of the bodye hidde from it. The eyes also of the bod [...]e cannot perceive what time the spirite resorteth to the fleshe and departeth from the same, for the spirite of manne, whiche is hys soule, is from heaven: but the fleshe is taken from the earthe. Wherefore the soule maye remaine withoute the body, but not likewise the bodye wythoute the soule, and when the spirite comes to the flesh, it visiteth it as a neighbour is wonte to goe and see his neighboure, and quickeneth it: and when againe it departeth from it, the fleshe dieth, and if the soul wil folowe the desires of the fleshe, then thys is the deathe of the soule: but if it geve no eare unto the fleshe, then shall the soule come to the lighte of life, and the fleshe shall dye.

Wherfore the soule is glad when it departeth out of ye body, like as one that hath bene bound, is wel apaid when he is dimissed oute of prisone, for all the while that the soule is kept closed in ye flesh, it is as it were a slave, in mooste hard & grevous bondage, under a hard [Page]master. Therfore when it departeth from the body, it is glad, because it muste go to the garden of paradise, thus ye see that in this life the soule is compared to a bond servaunt & slave. Much more then this did he reason of thimmortality and blessednesse of the soule before them, whiche we have omitted here: & when he had done that, he lamented & wept moste bitterlye for the case of the city of Jerusalem, saying.

Where is now the city of Jerusalem, that great & populous city? where is that most beautiful citye of Sion, that holy city which made merye the whole earth? Oh thou worship of Israell, the mirthe of our heartes, whither is thy glory come? where is thi magnificence O Jerusalem, where be the hils of the doughter of Sion? where be her kings and princes? where be the kinges that were wonte to come to inquire of her welfare in her gates? where are her sages and elders, her yong and most vavaleaunt men, which were jocund and mery in her stretes, upon her sabbathes &[Page]festival dayes? where is her famous sanctuarye, the dwelling of thalmighty god? where is the house of Sanctum sanctorum, the habitacion of holinesse, wherin no man might set his fote but the hie priest, whiche in all ages onlye once a yeare entred into it? But now, O Jerusalem, thou wast once replenished with people, & renowned amongste kinges, beloved of God, in thee was established the seate of the kingdome of [...]ustice and judgemente, whose streetes were paved with moste precious marble, whose walles glisterd and shined with the same stone, whose gates everye one were plated with golde and silver, whose wals were builded with great stones moste honorablye, whose priestes in the middes of the sanctuary like to angels of God and princes of holinesse, with sacrifices and burnt offerings made the lord loving to thee & thy people.

How art thou now stuffed ful of slaine men and carcases, whyche have pearished some by the sword, som by famin? and how are thi sonnes that[Page] dwelt in thee, & the straungers also ye resorted unto thee, to honor thy feastes, fallen now in thee? How art thou fallen from the hight of thy pride, & how art thou set a fire and brent even unto thy foundations, and art left desolate & solitary? What eye is so hard that can beholde thee? what hart so stonye that can abide to see thee? How art thou become a buriyng place of carkases? and how are thy stretes made void and destitute of living creatures, & they whiche heretofore were replenished wyth living, are now stuffed with dead. How hath the ashes of fire covered thee, that the sunne can not come at thee? Howe do the aunciente men which in times past did sit in the midst of thee, in ye seat of wisdom, juogment, and justice: now they sit by the carcases of their children, to drive awaye crowes and beastes from them, having their hoar heades be syrinkled with dust & ashes, in stead of their glorye? And those women thy doughters that are lefte, they remaine in the houses of them that made thee desolate,[Page] not that they may live, but to be unhalowed and polluted? who shall see all these thinges in thee, and shal desire to live rather then to die? who knowing thy magnificence that thou haddest of late, and nowe shall see thine ignominye and the dishonour of the same, wil not chuse to dye? And woulde God we had bene dead before, ye we might not have seene in thee thy reproch, or who would bring to passe ye we might lacke eyes, that we shuld not be compelled to see these mischeves ye are in the mids of thee? And behold we live a most sorowful life, for our enemies even now afore we be dead, cast lots upon our sonnes & daughters to devide them amongst them to be their servantes & handmaids. When Eleasar had ended this lamentacion, he spake to ye people yt was we him, thus.

This is a selection from the original text


bread, corn, fire, sin, war, waste

Source text

Title: A Compendious and Most Marveilous History of the Latter Tymes of the Jewes Commune Weale

Author: Peter Morwen

Publisher: John Daye

Publication date: 1558

Edition: 2nd Edition

Place of publication: London

Provenance/location: This text was transcribed from images available at Early English Books Online: http://eebo.chadwyck.com/home Bib Name / Number: STC (2nd ed.) / 14795 Copy from: Henry E. Huntington Library and Art Gallery

Digital edition

Original author(s): Peter Morwen

Language: English

Selection used:

  • 1 ) title page
  • 2 ) image numbers: 58
  • 3 ) image numbers: 166-169
  • 4 ) image numbers: 207-8
  • 5 ) image numbers: 213-215
  • 6 ) image numbers: 221-222
  • 7 ) image numbers: 248-262
  • 8 ) image numbers: 269-73
  • 9 ) image numbers: 275-77
  • 10 ) image numbers: 270-272


Texts collected by: Ayesha Mukherjee, Amlan Das Gupta, Azarmi Dukht Safavi

Texts transcribed by: Muhammad Irshad Alam, Bonisha Bhattacharya, Arshdeep Singh Brar, Muhammad Ehteshamuddin, Kahkashan Khalil, Sarbajit Mitra

Texts encoded by: Bonisha Bhattacharya, Shreya Bose, Lucy Corley, Kinshuk Das, Bedbyas Datta, Arshdeep Singh Brar, Sarbajit Mitra, Josh Monk, Reesoom Pal

Encoding checking by: Hannah Petrie, Gary Stringer, Charlotte Tupman

Genre: Britain > chronicle histories

For more information about the project, contact Dr Ayesha Mukherjee at the University of Exeter.