The Thomas Pages homepage
Mesha Stele Translation

 
Sometimes called the Moabite Stone, this 9th century BC inscription by the Moabite king Mesha is a memorial of Mesha's victories over "Omri king of Israel" and his son, who had been oppressing Moab.
 
The
translation is listed line by line.
 
 
1. I am Mesha, son of KMSYT (Kemosh[-yat]), the king of Moab, the Di-
2. -bonite. My father was king of Moab thirty years, and I reign-
3. -ed after my father. And I built this high-place for Kemosh in QRH ("the citadel"), a high place of [sal-]
4. -vation because he saved me from all the kings (or "all the attackers"), and because let me be victorious over all my adversaries. Omr-
5. -i was king of Israel and he oppressed Moab for many days because Kemosh was angry with his
6. land. And his son replaced him; and he also said, "I will oppress Moab". In my days he spoke thus.
7. But I was victorious over him and his house. And Israel suffered everlasting destruction, And Omri had conquered the lan-
8. -d of Madaba, and he dwelt there during his reign and half the reign of his son, forty years. But Kemosh
9. returned it in my days. So I [re]built Baal Meon, and I the water reservoir in it. And I bu[ilt]
10. Qiryaten. The man of Gad had dwelt in Ataroth from of old; and the king of Israel
11. built Ataroth for him. But I fought against the city and took it. And I slew all the people [and]
12. the city became the property of Kemosh and Moab. And I carried from there the altar for its DVDH ("its Davidic altar"?) and I
13. dragged it before Kemosh in Qerioit, and I settled in it men of Sharon m[en]
14. of Maharit. And Kemosh said to me, "Go! Seize Nebo against Israel." so I
15. proceeded by night and fought with it from the crack of dawn to midday, and I to-
16. -ok it and I slew all of them: seven thousand men and boys, and women and gi-
17. and maidens because I had dedicated it to Ashtar Kemosh I took [the ves-]
18. -sels of Yahweh, and I dragged them before Kemosh. And the king of Israel had built
19. Yahaz, and he dwelt in it while he was fighting with me, but Kemosh drove him out before me. so
20. I took from Moab two hundred men, all his captains. And I brought them to Yahaz, And I seized it
21. in order to add (it) to Dibon. I (myself) have built the 'citadel', 'the wall(s) of the forest' and the wall
22. of the 'acropolis'. And I built its gates; And I built its towers. And
23. I built a royal palace; and I made the ramparts for the reservo[ir for] water in the mid-
24. -st of the city. But there was no cistern in the midst of the city, in the 'citadel,' so I said to all the people, "Make [for]
25. yourselves each man a cistern in his house". And I hewed the shaft for the 'citadel' with prisoner-
26. -s of Israel. I built Aroer, and I made the highway in the Arnon.
27. I built Beth-Bamot, because it was in ruins. I built Bezer, because it was
28. a ruin [with] the armed men of Dibon because all of Dibon was under orders and I ru-
29. -led [ove]r [the] hundreds in the towns which I have annexed to the land. And I bui-
30. -lt Medeba and Beth-Diblaten and Beth-Baal-Meon, and I carried there [my herdsmen]
31. [to herd] the small cattle of the land, and Horonain, in it dwelt house of DV[D]...
32. [and] Kemosh [s]aid to me, "Go down, fight against Horonain". And I went down [and I fou-
33. -ght with the city and I took it and] Kemosh [re]turned it in my days. Then I went up from there te[n...]
34. [...a high] place of justice and I [...]
 


FOR A ROUGH TRANSLATION SIMPLY SELECT A LANGUAGE