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1 Pestilent flies will corrupt a preparation of sweet ointment: [and] a little wisdom is more precious than great glory of folly. 2 A wise man’s heart is at his right hand; but a fool’s heart at his left. 3 Yea, and whenever a fool walks by the way, his heart will fail him, and all that he thinks of is folly. 4 If the spirit of the ruler rise up against thee, leave not thy place; for soothing will put an end to great offences. 5 There is an evil which I have seen under the sun, wherein an error has proceeded from the ruler. 6 The fool has been set in very high places, while rich men would sit in a low one. 7 I have seen servants upon horses, and princes walking as servants on the earth. 8 He that digs a pit shall fall into it; and him that breaks down a hedge a serpent shall bite. 9 He that removes stones shall be troubled thereby; he that cleaves wood shall be endangered thereby. 10 If the axe-head should fall off, then the man troubles his countenance, and he must put forth more strength: and [in tat case] skill is of no advantage to a man. 11 If a serpent bite when there is no [charmer’s] whisper, then there is no advantage to the charmer. 12 The words of a wise mouth are gracious: but the lips of a fool will swallow him up. 13 The beginning of the words of his mouth is folly: and the end of his talk mischievous madness. 14 A fool moreover multiplies words: man knows not what has been, nor what will be: who shall tell him what will come after him? 15 The labour of fools will afflict them, [as that of one] who knows not to go to the city. 16 Woe to thee, O city, whose king is young, and thy princes eat in the morning! 17 Blessed art thou, O land, whose king is a son of nobles, and whose princes shall eat seasonably, for strength, and shall not be ashamed. 18 By slothful neglect a building will be brought low: and by idleness of the hands the house will fall to pieces. 19 Men prepare bread for laughter, and wine and oil that the living should rejoice: but to money all things will humbly yield obedience. 20 Even in thy conscience, curse not the king; and curse not the rich in thy bedchamber: for a bird of the air shall carry thy voice, and that which has wings shall report thy speech. ΜΥΙΑΙ θανατοῦσαι σαπριοῦσι σκευασίαν ἐλαίου ἡδύσματος· τίμιον ὀλίγον σοφίας ὑπὲρ δόξαν ἀφροσύνης μεγάλην, 2 καρδία σοφοῦ εἰς δεξιὸν αὐτοῦ, καὶ καρδία ἄφρονος εἰς ἀριστερὸν αὐτοῦ· 3 καί γε ἐν ὁδῷ ὅταν ἄφρων πορεύηται, καρδία αὐτοῦ ὑστερήσει, καὶ ἃ λογιεῖται πάντα ἀφροσύνη ἐστίν. 4 ἐὰν πνεῦμα τοῦ ἐξουσιάζοντος ἀναβῇ ἐπὶ σέ, τόπον σου μὴ ἀφῇς, ὅτι ἴαμα καταπαύσει ἁμαρτίας μεγάλας. 5 ἔστι πονηρία, ἣν εἶδον ὑπὸ τὸν ἥλιον, ὡς ἀκούσιον ὃ ἐξῆλθεν ἀπὸ προσώπου ἐξουσιάζοντος· 6 ἐδόθη ὁ ἄφρων ἐν ὕψεσι μεγάλοις, καὶ πλούσιοι ἐν ταπεινῷ καθήσονται. 7 εἶδον δούλους ἐφ᾿ ἵππους καὶ ἄρχοντας πορευομένους ὡς δούλους ἐπὶ τῆς γῆς. 8 ὁ ὀρύσσων βόθρον εἰς αὐτὸν ἐμπεσεῖται, καὶ καθαιροῦντα φραγμόν, δήξεται αὐτὸν ὄφις. 9 ἐξαίρων λίθους διαπονηθήσεται ἐν αὐτοῖς, σχίζων ξύλα κινδυνεύσει ἐν αὐτοῖς. 10 ἐὰν ἐκπέσῃ τὸ σιδήριον, καὶ αὐτὸς πρόσωπον ἐτάραξε, καὶ δυνάμεις δυναμώσει, καὶ περισσεία τοῦ ἀνδρείου σοφία. 11 ἐὰν δάκῃ ὄφις ἐν οὐ ψιθυρισμῷ, καὶ οὐκ ἔστι περισσεία τῷ ἐπᾴδοντι. 12 λόγοι στόματος σοφοῦ χάρις, καὶ χείλη ἄφρονος καταποντιοῦσιν αὐτόν· 13 ἀρχὴ λόγων στόματος αὐτοῦ ἀφροσύνη, καὶ ἐσχάτη στόματος αὐτοῦ περιφέρεια πονηρά, 14 καὶ ὁ ἄφρων πληθύνει λόγους, οὐκ ἔγνω ἄνθρωπος τί τὸ γενόμενον, καὶ τί τὸ ἐσόμενον, ὅτι ὀπίσω αὐτοῦ, τίς ἀναγγελεῖ αὐτῷ; 15 μόχθος τῶν ἀφρόνων κοπώσει αὐτούς, ὃς οὐκ ἔγνω τοῦ πορευθῆναι εἰς πόλιν. 16 οὐαί σοι, πόλις, ἧς ὁ βασιλεύς σου νεώτερος καὶ οἱ ἄρχοντές σου πρωΐ ἐσθίουσι. 17 μακαρία σύ, γῆ, ἧς ὁ βασιλεύς σου υἱὸς ἐλευθέρων καὶ οἱ ἄρχοντές σου πρὸς καιρὸν φάγονται ἐν δυνάμει καὶ οὐκ αἰσχυνθήσονται. 18 ἐν ὀκνηρίαις ταπεινωθήσεται ἡ δόκωσις, καὶ ἐν ἀργίᾳ χειρῶν στάξει ἡ οἰκία. 19 εἰς γέλωτα ποιοῦσιν ἄρτον καὶ οἶνον καὶ ἔλαιον τοῦ εὐφρανθῆναι ζῶντας, καὶ τοῦ ἀργυρίου ταπεινώσει ἐπακούσεται τὰ πάντα. 20 καί γε ἐν συνειδήσει σου βασιλέα μὴ καταράσῃ, καὶ ἐν ταμιείοις κοιτώνων σου μὴ καταράσῃ πλούσιον· ὅτι πετεινὸν τοῦ οὐρανοῦ ἀποίσει σὺν τὴν φωνήν σου, καὶ ὁ ἔχων τὰς πτέρυγας ἀπαγγελεῖ λόγον σου.

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