In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah came1 Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon unto Jerusalem, and besieged4 it.
And the Lord gave4 Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand, with part of the vessels of the house of God: which he carried55 into the land of Shinar to the house of his god; and he brought52 the vessels into the treasure house of his god.
And the king spake4 unto Ashpenaz the master of his eunuchs, that he should bring53 [certain] of the children of Israel, and of the king's seed, and of the princes;
Children in whom [was] no blemish, but well favoured, and skilful56 in all wisdom, and cunning6 in knowledge, and understanding56 science, and such as [had] ability in them to stand2 in the king's palace, and whom they might teach15 the learning and the tongue of the Chaldeans.
And the king appointed17 them a daily 3117 provision of the king's meat, and of the wine which he drank: so nourishing15 them three years, that at the end thereof they might stand4 before the king.
Now among these were of the children of Judah, Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah:
Unto whom the prince of the eunuchs gave4 names: for he gave4 unto Daniel [the name] of Belteshazzar; and to Hananiah, of Shadrach; and to Mishael, of Meshach; and to Azariah, of Abednego.
But Daniel purposed4 in his heart that he would not defile101 himself with the portion of the king's meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested17 of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile101 himself.
Now God had brought4 Daniel into favour and tender love with the prince of the eunuchs.
And the prince of the eunuchs said4 unto Daniel, I fear my lord the king, who hath appointed14 your meat and your drink: for why should he see4 your faces worse liking6 than the children which [are] of your sort? then shall ye make [me] endanger14 my head to the king.
Then said4 Daniel to Melzar, whom the prince of the eunuchs had set14 over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah,
Prove16 thy servants, I beseech thee, ten days; and let them give4 us pulse to eat,4 and water to drink.4
Then let our countenances be looked upon11 before thee, and the countenance of the children that eat6 of the portion of the king's meat: and as thou seest,4 deal3 with thy servants.
So he consented4 to them in this matter, and proved17 them ten days.
And at the end of ten days their countenances appeared8 fairer and fatter in flesh than all the children which did eat6 the portion of the king's meat.
Thus Melzar took away6 the portion of their meat, and the wine that they should drink; and gave6 them pulse.
As for these four children, God gave1 them knowledge and skill53 in all learning and wisdom: and Daniel had understanding52 in all visions and dreams.
Now at the end of the days that the king had said1 he should bring them in,53 then the prince of the eunuchs brought55 them in before Nebuchadnezzar.
And the king communed17 with them; and among them all was found8 none like Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah: therefore stood4 they before the king.
And in all matters of wisdom [and] understanding, that the king enquired14 of them, he found4 them ten times better than all the magicians [and] astrologers that [were] in all his realm.
And Daniel continued [even] unto the first year of king Cyrus.