THE BRAVERY OF MOSES
WHEN Moses had grown to be a man, a war broke out between the Egyptians and their neighbors
the Ethiopians. A great battle was fought, in which the Ethiopians were successful.
Being puffed up by this victory, they determined to conquer the whole land of Egypt.
And they gathered together their armies and invaded Egypt. Now the Egyptians were in
great terror, and they asked their priests and their wise men to pray to God and find
out what they should do. Then the same wise man who had foretold the birth of Moses
advised them to seek the assistance of Moses and make him the general of their armies.
So Pharaoh commanded his daughter to produce him. Upon which, when she had made him
swear he would do him no harm, she delivered him to the king. But she reproached the
wise man who had before advised the Egyptians to kill him, and was not ashamed now to
own their want of his help.
Then Moses went out at the head of a great army, and he surprised the enemy and attacked
them before they knew he was coming. For they expected he would come against them
 by water, as the land was difficult to be passed over in many places, owing to the vast
number of poisonous snakes that infested it. But Moses showed his wisdom in a wonderful
manner. He took with him a number of birds called ibises, a sort of stork, who devour
serpents and are their greatest enemies, so much so that the serpents are afraid of
them, and glide away when they know they are coming. As soon, therefore as Moses was
come to the land which was the breeder of these serpents, he let loose the ibises, and
by that means drove them away. And being thus enabled to come upon the Ethiopians
before they were aware, and when they were not prepared for him, he attacked and
beat them with great slaughter. And the Ethiopian army fled out of Egypt, and were
pursued by Moses into their own country and defeated again, insomuch that they were
in danger of being reduced to slavery and all sorts of destruction. And at length
they retired to Saba, which was a royal city of Ethiopia. This place was very
difficult to besiege, for it was built on an island in the river Nile, and was
surrounded by a great wall. While Moses was uneasy at the army's lying idle on
the banks of the river, for it seemed like madness to attempt crossing it when
the enemy could fight against them from behind their fortifications and hurl
their darts and javelins without any danger to themselves, it happened that
the daughter of the king of the Ethiopians saw Moses in the distance, and fell
in love with him on account of his beauty and his bravery. Therefore she sent to
him the most faithful of all her servants to propose marriage. He accepted the
offer, provided she would deliver up the city to him. No sooner was the agreement
made than it took effect immediately; and when Moses had cut off the Ethiopians,
he gave thanks to God, and celebrated his marriage. Then he led the Egyptians back
to their own land.
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