Daniel - Chapter 5


The King James Version Basic English Version (BBE)

1 Belshazzar the king made a great feast to a thousand of his lords, and drank wine before the thousand.

1 Belshazzar the king made a great feast for a thousand of his lords, drinking wine before the thousand.

2 Belshazzar, whiles he tasted the wine, commanded to bring the golden and silver vessels which his father Nebuchadnezzar had taken out of the temple which was in Jerusalem; that the king, and his princes, his wives, and his concubines, might drink therein.

2 Belshazzar, while he was overcome with wine, gave orders for them to put before him the gold and silver vessels which Nebuchadnezzar, his father, had taken from the Temple in Jerusalem; so that the king and his lords, his wives and his other women, might take their drink from them.

3 Then they brought the golden vessels that were taken out of the temple of the house of God which was at Jerusalem; and the king, and his princes, his wives, and his concubines, drank in them.

3 Then they took in the gold and silver vessels which had been in the Temple of the house of God at Jerusalem; and the king and his lords, his wives and his other women, took wine from them.

4 They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, and of silver, of brass, of iron, of wood, and of stone.

4 They took their wine and gave praise to the gods of gold and silver, of brass and iron and wood and stone.

5 In the same hour came forth fingers of a man's hand, and wrote over against the candlestick upon the plaister of the wall of the king's palace: and the king saw the part of the hand that wrote.

5 In that very hour the fingers of a man's hand were seen, writing opposite the support for the light on the white wall of the king's house, and the king saw the part of the hand which was writing.

6 Then the king's countenance was changed, and his thoughts troubled him, so that the joints of his loins were loosed, and his knees smote one against another.

6 Then the colour went from the king's face, and he was troubled by his thoughts; strength went from his body, and his knees were shaking.

7 The king cried aloud to bring in the astrologers, the Chaldeans, and the soothsayers. And the king spake, and said to the wise men of Babylon, Whosoever shall read this writing, and shew me the interpretation thereof, shall be clothed with scarlet, and have a chain of gold about his neck, and shall be the third ruler in the kingdom.

7 The king, crying out with a loud voice, said that the users of secret arts, the Chaldaeans, and the readers of signs, were to be sent for. The king made answer and said to the wise men of Babylon, Whoever is able to make out this writing, and make clear to me the sense of it, will be clothed in purple and have a chain of gold round his neck, and will be a ruler of high authority in the kingdom.

8 Then came in all the king's wise men: but they could not read the writing, nor make known to the king the interpretation thereof.

8 Then all the king's wise men came in: but they were not able to make out the writing or give the sense of it to the king.

9 Then was king Belshazzar greatly troubled, and his countenance was changed in him, and his lords were astonied.

9 Then King Belshazzar was greatly troubled and the colour went from his face, and his lords were at a loss.

10 Now the queen by reason of the words of the king and his lords came into the banquet house: and the queen spake and said, O king, live for ever: let not thy thoughts trouble thee, nor let thy countenance be changed:

10 The queen, because of the words of the king and his lords, came into the house of the feast: the queen made answer and said, O King, have life for ever; do not be troubled by your thoughts or let the colour go from your face:

11 There is a man in thy kingdom, in whom is the spirit of the holy gods; and in the days of thy father light and understanding and wisdom, like the wisdom of the gods, was found in him; whom the king Nebuchadnezzar thy father, the king, I say, thy father, made master of the magicians, astrologers, Chaldeans, and soothsayers;

11 There is a man in your kingdom in whom is the spirit of the holy gods; and in the days of your father, light and reason like the wisdom of the gods were seen in him: and King Nebuchadnezzar, your father, made him master of the wonder-workers, and the users of secret arts, and the Chaldaeans, and the readers of signs;

12 Forasmuch as an excellent spirit, and knowledge, and understanding, interpreting of dreams, and shewing of hard sentences, and dissolving of doubts, were found in the same Daniel, whom the king named Belteshazzar: now let Daniel be called, and he will shew the interpretation.

12 Because a most special spirit, and knowledge and reason and the power of reading dreams and unfolding dark sayings and answering hard questions, were seen to be in him, even in Daniel (named Belteshazzar by the king): now let Daniel be sent for, and he will make clear the sense of the writing.

13 Then was Daniel brought in before the king. And the king spake and said unto Daniel, Art thou that Daniel, which art of the children of the captivity of Judah, whom the king my father brought out of Jewry?

13 Then they took Daniel in before the king; the king made answer and said to Daniel, So you are that Daniel, of the prisoners of Judah, whom my father took out of Judah.

14 I have even heard of thee, that the spirit of the gods is in thee, and that light and understanding and excellent wisdom is found in thee.

14 And I have had news of you, that the spirit of the gods is in you, and that light and reason and special wisdom have been seen in you.

15 And now the wise men, the astrologers, have been brought in before me, that they should read this writing, and make known unto me the interpretation thereof: but they could not shew the interpretation of the thing:

15 And now the wise men, the users of secret arts, have been sent in before me for the purpose of reading this writing and making clear to me the sense of it: but they are not able to make clear the sense of the thing:

16 And I have heard of thee, that thou canst make interpretations, and dissolve doubts: now if thou canst read the writing, and make known to me the interpretation thereof, thou shalt be clothed with scarlet, and have a chain of gold about thy neck, and shalt be the third ruler in the kingdom.

16 And I have had news of you, that you have the power of making things clear, and of answering hard questions: now if you are able to make out the writing and give me the sense of it, you will be clothed in purple and have a gold chain round your neck and be a ruler of high authority in the kingdom.

17 Then Daniel answered and said before the king, Let thy gifts be to thyself, and give thy rewards to another; yet I will read the writing unto the king, and make known to him the interpretation.

17 Then Daniel made answer and said to the king, Keep your offerings for yourself, and give your rewards to another; but I, after reading the writing to the king, will give him the sense of it.

18 O thou king, the most high God gave Nebuchadnezzar thy father a kingdom, and majesty, and glory, and honour:

18 As for you, O King, the Most High God gave to Nebuchadnezzar, your father, the kingdom and great power and glory and honour:

19 And for the majesty that he gave him, all people, nations, and languages, trembled and feared before him: whom he would he slew; and whom he would he kept alive; and whom he would he set up; and whom he would he put down.

19 And because of the great power he gave him, all peoples and nations and languages were shaking in fear before him: some he put to death and others he kept living, at his pleasure, lifting up some and putting others down as it pleased him.

20 But when his heart was lifted up, and his mind hardened in pride, he was deposed from his kingly throne, and they took his glory from him:

20 But when his heart was lifted up and his spirit became hard with pride, he was put down from his place as king, and they took his glory from him:

21 And he was driven from the sons of men; and his heart was made like the beasts, and his dwelling was with the wild asses: they fed him with grass like oxen, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven; till he knew that the most high God ruled in the kingdom of men, and that he appointeth over it whomsoever he will.

21 And he was sent out from among the sons of men; and his heart was made like the beasts', and he was living with the asses of the fields; he had grass for his food like the oxen, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven, till he was certain that the Most High is ruler in the kingdom of men, and gives power over it to anyone at his pleasure.

22 And thou his son, O Belshazzar, hast not humbled thine heart, though thou knewest all this;

22 And you, his son, O Belshazzar, have not kept your heart free from pride, though you had knowledge of all this;

23 But hast lifted up thyself against the Lord of heaven; and they have brought the vessels of his house before thee, and thou, and thy lords, thy wives, and thy concubines, have drunk wine in them; and thou hast praised the gods of silver, and gold, of brass, iron, wood, and stone, which see not, nor hear, nor know: and the God in whose hand thy breath is, and whose are all thy ways, hast thou not glorified:

23 But you have been lifting yourself up against the Lord of heaven, and they have put the vessels of his house before you, and you and your lords, your wives and your women, have taken wine in them; and you have given praise to gods of silver and gold, of brass and iron and wood and stone, who are without the power of seeing or hearing, and without knowledge: and to the God in whose hand your breath is, and whose are all your ways, you have not given glory;

24 Then was the part of the hand sent from him; and this writing was written.

24 Then the part of the hand was sent out from before him, and this writing was recorded.

25 And this is the writing that was written, MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN.

25 And this is the writing which was recorded, Mene, tekel, peres.

26 This is the interpretation of the thing: MENE; God hath numbered thy kingdom, and finished it.

26 This is the sense of the words: Mene; your kingdom has been numbered by God and ended.

27 TEKEL; Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting.

27 Tekel; you have been put in the scales and seen to be under weight.

28 PERES; Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians.

28 Peres; your kingdom has been cut up and given to the Medes and Persians.

29 Then commanded Belshazzar, and they clothed Daniel with scarlet, and put a chain of gold about his neck, and made a proclamation concerning him, that he should be the third ruler in the kingdom.

29 Then, by the order of Belshazzar, they put a purple robe on Daniel, and a gold chain round his neck, and a public statement was made that he was to be a ruler of high authority in the kingdom.

30 In that night was Belshazzar the king of the Chaldeans slain.

30 That very night Belshazzar, the king of the Chaldaeans, was put to death.

31 And Darius the Median took the kingdom, being about threescore and two years old.

31 And Darius the Mede took the kingdom, being then about sixty-two years old.




Rights in the Authorized Version are vested in the Crown. Published in the United Kingdom by permission of the Crown"s patentee, Cambridge University Press.

Life in 1611
Register an Event
Composition Awards
Mahalia Jackson
Donate and Keep the KJV Alive
Join our newsletter database
to receive information on the
King James Bible Trust
The Bible Society The City of London Bush Theatre The Scottish Bible Society Nida