For he had entered into the city called Persepolis, and he attempted to rob *a temple and to control the city. Therefore the multitudes rushed in and the people of the country turned to defend themselves with weapons; and it came to pass that Antiochus was put to flight by the people of the country and broke his camp with disgrace.
Being overcome by his anger, he planned to make the Jews suffer for the evil deeds of those who had put him to flight. Therefore, with judgment from heaven even now accompanying him, he ordered his charioteer to drive without ceasing until he completed the journey; for he arrogantly said this: “I will make Jerusalem a common graveyard of Jews when I come there.”
¶But the All-seeing Lord, the God of Israel, struck him with a *fatal and invisible stroke. As soon as he had finished speaking this word, an incurable pain of the bowels seized him, with bitter torments of the inner parts—
But he in no way ceased from his rude insolence. No, he was filled with even more arrogance, breathing fire in his passion against the Jews, and giving orders to hasten the journey. But it came to pass moreover that he fell from his chariot as it rushed along, and having a grievous fall was tortured in all of the members of his body.
He who had just supposed himself to have the waves of the sea at his bidding because he was so superhumanly arrogant, and who thought to weigh the heights of the mountains in a balance, was now brought to the ground and carried in a litter, *showing to all that the power was obviously God’s,
so that worms swarmed out of the impious man’s body, and while he was still living in anguish and pains, his flesh fell off, and by reason of the stench all the army turned with loathing from his decay.
Concerning the Jews, whom he had decided not even to count worthy of burial, but to cast them out to the animals with their infants for the birds to devour, he would make them all equal to citizens of Athens.
The holy sanctuary, which before he had plundered, he would adorn with best offerings, and would restore all the sacred vessels many times multiplied, and out of his own revenues would defray the charges that were required for the sacrifices.
But when his sufferings did in no way cease, for the judgment of God had come upon him in righteousness, having given up all hope for himself, he wrote to the Jews the letter written below, having the nature of a supplication, to this effect:
I remembered with affection your honor and good will. Returning out of the region of Persia, and being taken with an annoying sickness, I deemed it necessary to take thought for the common safety of all,
and, moreover, observing how the princes who are along the borders and neighbors to my kingdom watch for opportunities and look for the future event, I have appointed my son Antiochus to be king, whom I often entrusted and commended to most of you when I was hurrying to the upper provinces. I have written to him what is written below.