The Book of Daniel
1 In the year three of the reign of King Jehojakim of Judah, King Nebucadnessar of Babylon came to Jerusalem and besieged it, 2* and the Lord gave into his hands King Jehojakim of Judah and some of the vessels of God’s house, and he brought them to the country of Shinear, and brought the vessels into the treasury of his god’s house.
3 And the king told his chief eunuch Ashpenaz to bring some of the sons of Israel and of the royal blood and of the upper classes, 4 boys free from all defects, good-looking, judicious, well-informed, clear-headed, capable of serving in the royal palace, and to teach them Chaldean scholarship and the Chaldean language. 5* And the king assigned them a daily ration out of the king’s viands and the wine provided for his drinking, and gave orders to bring them up for three years, at the end of which they were to serve before the king. 6 And among them were certain Judahites, Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and ʽAzariah; 7 and the chief eunuch gave them names, naming Daniel “Belteshassar” and Hananiah “Shadrac” and Mishael “Meshac” and ʽAzariah “ʽAbed-Nego.”
8 But Daniel resolved not to pollute himself with the king’s viands and the wine provided for his drinking, and requested the chief eunuch that he might not pollute himself. 9* And God gave Daniel the friendliness and sympathy of the chief eunuch. 10 And the chief eunuch said to Daniel “I am afraid of my lord the king, who has assigned your food and drink: why should he see your faces looking mopy in comparison with the boys of the same age, and you make me lose my standing with the king?” 11* But Daniel said to the proctor whom the chief eunuch had assigned to be over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and ʽAzariah 12* “Put your servants on trial ten days and have them give us vegetables to eat and water to drink, 13 and have our looks and the looks of the boys that eat the king’s viands inspected before you, and do with your servants in accordance with what you see”; 14 and he listened to them on this proposition and put them on trial ten days, 15 and at the end of ten days their looks were seen to be better, and they to be plumper, than any of the boys that ate the king’s viands; 16 and the proctor took to making away with their viands and the wine provided for their drinking and giving them vegetables. 17 And to all four of these boys God gave knowledge and expertness in all scholarship and wisdom; and Daniel had insight into all visions and dreams. 18* And at the end of the time after which the king had ordered them brought, the chief eunuch brought them before Nebucadnessar 19 and the king talked with them; and of them all there were not found the equals of Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and ʽAzariah; and they served before the king. 20 And in every item of perspicacious wisdom that the king called on them for he found them tenfold superior to any of the scholars and exorcists in his whole kingdom. 21* And Daniel lasted to the year one of King Cyrus.