The Holy Bible – Knox Translation
The Book of Judith
When word of this outrage upon Holofernes spread through the army, plan and purpose had they none; taking counsel only of the fear that shook their limbs, they sought refuge in flight.
None might say a word to his neighbour, none might lift his head; they left all behind, and hastened to make good their escape from the rumoured onslaught of the Hebrews, some taking the roads across the plain, some the mountain tracks.
The Israelites, when they saw their backs turned, went in pursuit, and swept down the hill-side with blowing of trumpets and a great shouting at their heels.
The Assyrians, in their headlong flight, could not hold together, and their enemies, pursuing them in orderly array, need only catch them to overpower them;
so Ozias sent out messengers to all Israel, city-dwellers and country-dwellers alike,
and none but sent out the flower of their manhood, ready armed for the pursuit. At the sword’s point they followed them, to the very frontiers of their domain.
As for the folk who had been left behind in Bethulia, they made their way into the Assyrian camp, whence they carried off all the Assyrians had left behind when they fled, and it was no light load they brought home with them.
When the victorious army returned, with the spoils taken from their enemies, there was no counting the cattle and the pack-beasts and the plunder of all sorts; none, high or low, but was enriched with the booty.
And now the high priest Joacim✻ came to Bethulia, with all that were his fellow elders at Jerusalem, asking to see Judith;
and when she answered his summons, all with one voice began to extol her; Thou art the boast of Jerusalem, the joy of Israel, the pride of our people;
thou hast played a man’s part, and kept thy courage high. Not unrewarded thy love of chastity, that wouldst never take a second husband in thy widowhood; the Lord gave thee firmness of resolve, and thy name shall be ever blessed.
And to that all the people said Amen.
Scarce did thirty days suffice for the men of Israel to gather the Assyrian spoils.
Among these, all that proved to be Holofernes’ own went to Judith herself, gold and silver, clothes and jewels, and furniture of every sort; all these the people handed over to her,
keeping high festival, while man and maid, wed and unwedded, played flute and harp together.
The Holy Bible