The Book of Mormon: An Account Written by the Hand of Mormon, upon Plates Taken from the Plates of Nephi. Kirtland, OH: P. P. Pratt and J. Goodson; printed by O. Cowdery & Co., 1837. iii–vi, 7–619 pp., plus two additional pp. The copy used herein is held at CHL. Includes signature marks.
An account of his people, from the time they left the land of Zarahemla, until the time that they were delivered out of the hands of the Lamanites.
I, Zeniff, having been taught in all the language of the Nephites, and having had a knowledge of the land of Nephi, or of the land of our fathers’ first inheritance, and having been sent as a spy among the Lamanites, that I might spy out their forces, that our army might come upon them and destroy them: but when I saw that which was good among them, I was desirous that they should not be destroyed; therefore, I contended with my brethren in the wilderness: for I would that our ruler should make a treaty with them. But he being an austere and a blood-thirsty man, commanded that I should be slain; but I was rescued by the shedding of much blood: for father fought against father, and brother against brother, until the greatest number of our army was destroyed in the wilderness; and we returned, those of us that were spared, to the land of Zarahemla, to relate that tale to their wives, and their children. And yet, I being over zealous to inherit the land of our fathers, collected as many as were desirous to go up to possess the land, and started again on our journey into the wilderness, to go up to the land; but we were smitten with famine and sore afflictions: for we were slow to remember the Lord our God. Nevertheless, after many days’ wandering in the wilderness, we pitched our tents in the place where our brethren were slain, which was near to the land of our fathers.
And it came to pass that I went again with four of my men, into the city, in unto the king, that I might know of the disposition of the king, and that I might know if I might go in with my people, and possess the land in peace. And I went in unto the king, and he covenanted with me, that I might possess the land of Lehi-Nephi, and the land of Shilom. And he also commanded that his people should depart out of the land, and I and my people went into the land, that we might possess it. And we began to build buildings, and to repair the walls of the city, yea, even the walls [p. 185]