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The Lamentations of Jeremiah, chapter 4, Vulgate and King James Version

This chapter is an acrostic poem, the verses of which begin with the successive letters of the Hebrew alphabet.

Chapter 4


   1 ALEPH. Quomodo obscuratum est aurum, mutatum est obryzum optimum! Dispersi sunt lapides sancti in capite omnium platearum.
   2 BETH. Filii Sion incliti et ponderati auro primo, quomodo reputati sunt in vasa testea, opus manuum figuli!
   3 GHIMEL. Sed et thoes nudaverunt mammam, lactaverunt catulos suos; filia populi mei crudelis quasi struthio in deserto.
   4 DALETH. Adhaesit lingua lactantis ad palatum eius in siti; parvuli petierunt panem, et non erat qui frangeret eis.
   5 HE. Qui vescebantur voluptuose, interierunt in viis; qui nutriebantur in coccinis, amplexati sunt stercora.
   6 VAU. Et maior effecta est iniquitas filiae populi mei peccato Sodomae, quae subversa est in momento, et non laborabant in ea manus.
   7 ZAIN. Candidiores nazaraei eius nive, nitidiores lacte, rubicundiores in corpore coralliis, sapphirus aspectus eorum.
   8 HETH. Denigrata est super carbones facies eorum, et non sunt cogniti in plateis: adhaesit cutis eorum ossibus, aruit et facta est quasi lignum.
   9 TETH. Melius fuit occisis gladio quam interfectis fame, quoniam isti extabuerunt consumpti a sterilitate terrae.
   10 IOD. Manus mulierum misericordium coxerunt filios suos: facti sunt cibus earum in contritione filiae populi mei.
   11 CAPH. Complevit Dominus furorem suum, effudit iram indignationis suae; et succendit ignem in Sion, qui devoravit fundamenta eius.
   12 LAMED. Non crediderunt reges terrae et universi habitatores orbis, quoniam ingrederetur hostis et inimicus per portas Ierusalem.
   13 MEM. Propter peccata prophetarum eius et iniquitates sacerdotum eius, qui effuderunt in medio eius sanguinem iustorum.
   14 NUN. Erraverunt caeci in plateis, polluti sunt in sanguine, ita ut nemo posset attingere lacinias eorum.
   15 SAMECH. "Recedite! Pollutus est", clamaverunt eis;" Recedite, abite, nolite tangere!". Cum fugerent et errarent, dixerunt inter gentes: "Non addent ultra ut incolant".
   16 PHE. Facies Domini dispersit eos, non addet ut respiciat eos; facies sacerdotum non respexerunt neque senum miserti sunt.
   17 AIN. Adhuc deficiunt oculi nostri ad auxilium nostrum vanum? In specula nostra respeximus ad gentem, quae salvare non potest.
   18 SADE. Insidiati sunt vestigiis nostris, ne iremus per plateas nostras." Appropinquavit finis noster, completi sunt dies nostri, quia venit finis noster".
   19 COPH. Velociores fuerunt persecutores nostri aquilis caeli; super montes persecuti sunt nos, in deserto insidiati sunt nobis.
   20 RES. Spiritus oris nostri, unctus Domini, captus est in foveis eorum, de quo dicebamus: "Sub umbra sua vivemus in gentibus".
   21 SIN. Gaude et laetare, filia Edom, quae habitas in terra Us; ad te quoque perveniet calix, inebriaberis atque nudaberis.
   22 THAU. Completa est iniquitas tua, filia Sion, non addet ultra ut transmigret te; visitavit iniquitatem tuam, filia Edom, discooperuit peccata tua.

King James Version

   1 How is the gold become dim! how is the most fine gold changed! the stones of the sanctuary are poured out in the top of every street.
   2 The precious sons of Zion, comparable to fine gold, how are they esteemed as earthen pitchers, the work of the hands of the potter!
   3 Even the sea monsters draw out the breast, they give suck to their young ones: the daughter of my people is become cruel, like the ostriches in the wilderness.
   4 The tongue of the sucking child cleaveth to the roof of his mouth for thirst: the young children ask bread, and no man breaketh it unto them.
   5 They that did feed delicately are desolate in the streets: they that were brought up in scarlet embrace dunghills.
   6 For the punishment of the iniquity of the daughter of my people is greater than the punishment of the sin of Sodom, that was overthrown as in a moment, and no hands stayed on her.
   7 Her Nazarites were purer than snow, they were whiter than milk, they were more ruddy in body than rubies, their polishing was of sapphire:
   8 Their visage is blacker than a coal; they are not known in the streets: their skin cleaveth to their bones; it is withered, it is become like a stick.
   9 They that be slain with the sword are better than they that be slain with hunger: for these pine away, stricken through for want of the fruits of the field.
   10 The hands of the pitiful women have sodden their own children: they were their meat in the destruction of the daughter of my people.
   11 The LORD hath accomplished his fury; he hath poured out his fierce anger, and hath kindled a fire in Zion, and it hath devoured the foundations thereof.
   12 The kings of the earth, and all the inhabitants of the world, would not have believed that the adversary and the enemy should have entered into the gates of Jerusalem.
   13 ¶ For the sins of her prophets, and the iniquities of her priests, that have shed the blood of the just in the midst of her,
   14 They have wandered as blind men in the streets, they have polluted themselves with blood, so that men could not touch their garments.
   15 They cried unto them, Depart ye; it is unclean; depart, depart, touch not: when they fled away and wandered, they said among the heathen, They shall no more sojourn there.
   16 The anger of the LORD hath divided them; he will no more regard them: they respected not the persons of the priests, they favoured not the elders.
   17 As for us, our eyes as yet failed for our vain help: in our watching we have watched for a nation that could not save us.
   18 They hunt our steps, that we cannot go in our streets: our end is near, our days are fulfilled; for our end is come.
   19 Our persecutors are swifter than the eagles of the heaven: they pursued us upon the mountains, they laid wait for us in the wilderness.
   20 The breath of our nostrils, the anointed of the LORD, was taken in their pits, of whom we said, Under his shadow we shall live among the heathen.
   21 ¶ Rejoice and be glad, O daughter of Edom, that dwellest in the land of Uz; the cup also shall pass through unto thee: thou shalt be drunken, and shalt make thyself naked.
   22 ¶ The punishment of thine iniquity is accomplished, O daughter of Zion; he will no more carry thee away into captivity: he will visit thine iniquity, O daughter of Edom; he will discover thy sins.

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