The Holy Bible – Knox Translation
The Prophecy of Nahum
Chapter 3
1 2 3
Out upon thee, city of blood, full fed with treason and rapine, yet still at prey!
What sounds are these? Crack of whip, whirring of wheels, beat of horse-hoof, rattle of chariot. Mounts horseman,
flash like lightning sword and spear; what carnage! How cumbered the earth with slain! Dead bodies past counting; the living stumble over the dead.
Harlot so unwearied in thy harlot’s ways, so fair, so full of witchery, too long hast thou betrayed a nation here, a tribe there, with sorcery of thine, harlotry of thine;
and now I will be even with thee, says the Lord God of hosts. I mean to set thy skirts flying about thy ears, and lay bare the naked shame of thee, for all the kingdoms of the world to see;
pelted thou shalt be with things abominable, and foully bemocked; such a public show I will make of thee,
passer-by will be fain to shun thee; Nineve fallen, says he, and never a tear! Search where I will, never a friend to comfort thee!
Here was another city, No-Ammon, fair as thyself; she too was built on the river-side, water all about her; the sea her mart, the sea her defences.
Hers the Ethiop land, hers was Egypt; wanted there strength yet, African and Libyan were at her side;
yet thy fate was hers, exile, and captivity, and children at every street’s turning dashed to death; honour and rank condemned to the lot’s mercy, and the chain’s grip!

Bemused and helpless with fear, looking about for succour against the invader, so she was, so thou shalt be.
At a touch thy bastions shall fall, like ripe figs that drop into the eater’s mouth, soon as tree is shaken;
woman-hearted the defenders, the gates wide open to the enemy’s onrush, touchwood the bars of them.
Water, there, water for a siege! Raise the battlements higher yet! Down to the clay-pit with thee, tread the mortar, put thy hand to the brick-mould!
Fire shall consume thee none the less, the sword cut thee off, hungry as locust to devour.

Thrive thou as locust thrives or grasshopper,
ay, let thy enterprises outnumber the stars in heaven, what avails it? Early hatches locust, early flies away.
Forgotten, the high lords, forgotten, the princelings, as they had been locusts, and brood of locusts, that cling to yonder hedge-row in the chill of morning, and are gone, once the sun is up, who knows whither?
Gone to their rest thy marshals, king of Assyria; thy vassals lie silent in the dust; out on the hills the common folk take refuge, with none to muster them.
Wound of thine there is no hiding, hurt of thine is grievous; nor any shall hear the tidings of it but shall clap their hands over thee, so long thy tyrannous yoke has rested on so many.