(Book of Mormon | Alma 2:9 - 38)
Verses 9-14 give the reasons for the war and the preparations
that were made for battle.
9 And it came to pass that they gathered themselves together, and did
consecrate Amlici to be their king.
10 Now when Amlici was made king over them he commanded them that
they should take up arms against their brethren; and this he did that he
might subject them to him.
11 Now the people of Amlici were distinguished by the name of Amlici,
being called Amlicites; and the remainder were called Nephites, or the
people of God.
12 Therefore the people of the Nephites were aware of the intent of the
Amlicites, and therefore they did prepare to meet them; yea, they did arm
themselves with swords, and with cimeters, and with bows, and with
arrows, and with stones, and with slings, and with all manner of weapons
of war, of every kind.
13 And thus they were prepared to meet the Amlicites at the time of their
coming. And there were appointed captains, and higher captains, and
chief captains, according to their numbers.
14 And it came to pass that Amlici did arm his men with all manner of
weapons of war of every kind; and he also appointed rulers and leaders
over his people, to lead them to war against their brethren.
Verse 15 tells us that the war starts on a hill called Amnihu. It
further tells us that this hill is east of the river Sidon but gives no
information about its location relative to the City of Zarahemla. It
states that the river Sidon runs by the land of Zarahemla at this
location and significantly does not say through the land of
Zarahemla. We can assume that it is somewhere between the
City of Zarahemla and the city where the Amlicites have
gathered to prepare for war.
15 And it came to pass that the Amlicites came upon the hill Amnihu,
which was east of the river Sidon, which ran by the land of Zarahemla, and
there they began to make war with the Nephites.
Verses 16-17 report that Alma leads the Nephite army and
starts to battle with the Amlicites someplace east of the river
Sidon, presumably at the hill Amnihu.
16 Now Alma, being the chief judge and the governor of the people of
Nephi, therefore he went up with his people, yea, with his captains, and
chief captains, yea, at the head of his armies, against the Amlicites to
17 And they began to slay the Amlicites upon the hill east of Sidon. And
the Amlicites did contend with the Nephites with great strength, insomuch
that many of the Nephites did fall before the Amlicites.
Verses 18-19 informs us that there was great slaughter causing
the Amlicites to flee, presumably in the direction of their city.
18 Nevertheless the Lord did strengthen the hand of the Nephites, that
they slew the Amlicites with great slaughter, that they began to flee before
19 And it came to pass that the Nephites did pursue the Amlicites all that
day, and did slay them with much slaughter, insomuch that there were slain
of the Amlicites twelve thousand five hundred thirty and two souls; and
there were slain of the Nephites six thousand five hundred sixty and two
Verse 20 Nightfall brings a close to the fighting and the
Nephites make camp in the Valley of Gideon without crossing
the river Sidon.
20 And it came to pass that when Alma could pursue the Amlicites no
longer he caused that his people should pitch their tents in the valley of
Gideon, the valley being called after that Gideon who was slain by the
hand of Nehor with the sword; and in this valley the Nephites did pitch their
tents for the night.
Verses 21-25 Alma sends spies to follow the Amlicites, probably
suspecting that they have made an alliance with the Lamanites.
This turns out to be true and to their surprise, the Lamanite
army is already in the land and has joined with the Amlicites and
is marching to the City of Zarahemla. The Lamanites have
taken advantage of a pass in the western wilderness which
allows access to the Land of Zarahemla by way of the Land of
21 And Alma sent spies to follow the remnant of the Amlicites, that he
might know of their plans and their plots, whereby he might guard himself
against them, that he might preserve his people from being destroyed.
22 Now those whom he had sent out to watch the camp of the Amlicites
were called Zeram, and Amnor, and Manti, and Limher; these were they
who went out with their men to watch the camp of the Amlicites.
23 And it came to pass that on the morrow they returned into the camp of
the Nephites in great haste, being greatly astonished, and struck with
much fear, saying:
24 Behold, we followed the camp of the Amlicites, and to our great
astonishment, in the land of Minon, above the land of Zarahemla, in the
course of the land of Nephi, we saw a numerous host of the Lamanites;
and behold, the Amlicites have joined them;
25 And they are upon our brethren in that land; and they are fleeing before
them with their flocks, and their wives, and their children, towards our city;
and except we make haste they obtain possession of our city, and our
fathers, and our wives, and our children be slain.
Verses 26-27 The Nephites pack up and head for the city of
Zarahemla. As they start to cross the river Sidon they are met
by the combined Amlici and Lamanite armies and the battle
26 And it came to pass that the people of Nephi took their tents, and
departed out of the valley of Gideon towards their city, which was the city
27 And behold, as they were crossing the river Sidon, the Lamanites and
the Amlicites, being as numerous almost, as it were, as the sands of the
sea, came upon them to destroy them.
Verses 28-34 After fierce fighting Alma is finally able to clear the
river bank west of the river Sidon, allowing his army to cross
over the river to the west bank.
28 Nevertheless, the Nephites being strengthened by the hand of the
Lord, having prayed mightily to him that he would deliver them out of the
hands of their enemies, therefore the Lord did hear their cries, and did
strengthen them, and the Lamanites and the Amlicites did fall before them.
29 And it came to pass that Alma fought with Amlici with the sword, face
to face; and they did contend mightily, one with another.
30 And it came to pass that Alma, being a man of God, being exercised
with much faith, cried, saying: O Lord, have mercy and spare my life, that I
may be an instrument in thy hands to save and preserve this people.
31 Now when Alma had said these words he contended again with
Amlici; and he was strengthened, insomuch that he slew Amlici with the
32 And he also contended with the king of the Lamanites; but the king of
the Lamanites fled back from before Alma and sent his guards to contend
33 But Alma, with his guards, contended with the guards of the king of the
Lamanites until he slew and drove them back.
34 And thus he cleared the ground, or rather the bank, which was on the
west of the river Sidon, throwing the bodies of the Lamanites who had
been slain into the waters of Sidon, that thereby his people might have
room to cross and contend with the Lamanites and the Amlicites on the
west side of the river Sidon.
Extremely demoralised by the loss of both the king of the
Lamanites and the king of the Amlicites, The opposing army
flees to the west and the north. This peculiar use of directions
suggests that their flight path was along the border between the
western and northern quarters of the land of Zarahemla.
They are eventually driven into the wilderness of Hermounts.
35 And it came to pass that when they had all crossed the river Sidon that
the Lamanites and the Amlicites began to flee before them,
notwithstanding they were so numerous that they could not be numbered.
36 And they fled before the Nephites towards the wilderness which was
west and north, away beyond the borders of the land; and the Nephites did
pursue them with their might, and did slay them.
37 Yea, they were met on every hand, and slain and driven, until they were
scattered on the west, and on the north, until they had reached the
wilderness, which was called Hermounts; and it was that part of the
wilderness which was infested by wild and ravenous beasts.
38 And it came to pass that many died in the wilderness of their wounds,
and were devoured by those beasts and also the vultures of the air; and
their bones have been found, and have been heaped up on the earth.
Map showing the path of
the Amlicites starting at the
city where they gathered to
go to war with the Nephites,
traveling along beside the
river Sidon and then east to
the hill Amnihu (light blue).
They are then forced back
to the valley of Gideon (red)
where they flee south to
meet their allies in the land
of Minon (violet). They
return towards the City of
Zarahemla (black) where
they meet Alma and are
driven west and north to the
wilderness of Hermounts
|The Battle With the Amlicites