The wise man thinketh humbly of himself. His prayer and sentiments upon certain virtues and vices.
1 The words of Gatherer the son of Vomiter. The vision which the man spoke with whom God is, and who being strengthened by God, abiding with him, said:
Verba Congregantis, filii Vomentis. Visio quam locutus est vir cum quo est Deus, et qui Deo secum morante confortatus, ait :
2 I am the most foolish of men, and the wisdom of men is not with me.
Stultissimus sum virorum, et sapientia hominum non est mecum.
3 I have not learned wisdom, and have not known the science of saints.
Non didici sapientiam, et non novi scientiam sanctorum.
4 Who hath ascended up into heaven, and descended? who hath held the wind in his hands? who hath bound up the waters together as in a garment? who hath raised up all the borders of the earth? what is his name, and what is the name of his son, if thou knowest?
Quis ascendit in caelum, atque descendit? quis continuit spiritum in manibus suis? quis colligavit aquas quasi in vestimento? quis suscitavit omnes terminos terrae? quod nomen est ejus, et quod nomen filii ejus, si nosti?
5 Every word of God is fire tried: he is a buckler to them that hope in him.
Omnis sermo Dei ignitus, clypeus est sperantibus in se.
6 Add not any thing to his words, lest thou be reproved, and found a liar:
Ne addas quidquam verbis illius, et arguaris, inveniarisque mendax.
7 Two things I have asked of thee, deny them not to me before I die.
Duo rogavi te : ne deneges mihi antequam moriar :
8 Remove far from me vanity, and lying words. Give me neither beggary, nor riches: give me only the necessaries of life:
vanitatem et verba mendacia longe fac a me; mendicitatem et divitias ne dederis mihi, tribue tantum victui meo necessaria :
9 Lest perhaps being filled, I should be tempted to deny, and say: Who is the Lord? or being compelled by poverty, I should steal, and forswear the name of my God.
ne forte satiatus illiciar ad negandum, et dicam : Quis est Dominus? aut egestate compulsus, furer, et perjurem nomen Dei mei.
10 Accuse not a servant to his master, lest he curse thee, and thou fall.
Ne accuses servum ad dominum suum, ne forte maledicat tibi, et corruas.
11 There is a generation that curseth their father, and doth not bless their mother.
Generatio quae patri suo maledicit, et quae matri suae non benedicit;
12 A generation that are pure in their own eyes, and yet are not washed from their filthiness.
generatio quae sibi munda videtur, et tamen non est lota a sordibus suis;
13 A generation, whose eyes are lofty, and their eyelids lifted up on high.
generatio cujus excelsi sunt oculi, et palpebrae ejus in alta surrectae;
14 A generation, that for teeth hath swords, and grindeth with their jaw teeth, to devour the needy from off the earth, and the poor from among men.
generatio quae pro dentibus gladios habet, et commandit molaribus suis, ut comedat inopes de terra, et pauperes ex hominibus.
15 The horseleech hath two daughters that say: Bring, bring. There are three things that never are satisfied, and the fourth never saith: It is enough.
Sanguisugae duae sunt filiae, dicentes : Affer, affer. Tria sunt insaturabilia, et quartum quod numquam dicit : Sufficit.
16 Hell, and the mouth of the womb, and the earth which is not satisfied with water: and the fire never saith: It is enough.
Infernus, et os vulvae, et terra quae non satiatur aqua : ignis vero numquam dicit : Sufficit.
17 The eye that mocketh at his father, and that despiseth the labour of his mother in bearing him, let the ravens of the brooks pick it out, and the young eagles eat it.
Oculum qui subsannat patrem, et qui despicit partum matris suae, effodiant eum corvi de torrentibus, et comedant eum filii aquilae!
18 Three things are hard to me, and the fourth I am utterly ignorant of.
Tria sunt difficilia mihi, et quartum penitus ignoro :
19 The way of an eagle in the air, the way of a serpent upon a rock, the way of a ship in the midst of the sea, and the way of a man in youth.
viam aquilae in caelo, viam colubri super petram, viam navis in medio mari, et viam viri in adolescentia.
20 Such is also the way of an adulterous woman, who eateth, and wipeth her mouth, and saith: I have done no evil.
Talis est et via mulieris adulterae, quae comedit, et tergens os suum dicit : Non sum operata malum.
21 By three things the earth is disturbed, and the fourth it cannot bear:
Per tria movetur terra, et quartum non potest sustinere :
22 By a slave when he reigneth: by a fool when he is filled with meat:
per servum, cum regnaverit; per stultum, cum saturatus fuerit cibo;
23 By an odious woman when she is married: and by a bondwoman when she is heir to her mistress.
per odiosam mulierem, cum in matrimonio fuerit assumpta, et per ancillam, cum fuerit haeres dominae suae.
24 There are four very little things of the earth, and they are wiser than the wise:
Quatuor sunt minima terrae, et ipsa sunt sapientiora sapientibus :
25 The ants, a feeble people, which provide themselves food in the harvest:
formicae, populus infirmus, qui praeparat in messe cibum sibi;
26 The rabbit, a weak people, which maketh its bed in the rock:
lepusculus, plebs invalida, qui collocat in petra cubile suum;
27 The locust hath no king, yet they all go out by their bands.
regem locusta non habet, et egreditur universa per turmas suas;
28 The stellio supporteth itself on hands, and dwelleth in kings' houses.
stellio manibus nititur, et moratur in aedibus regis.
29 There are three things, which go well, and the fourth that walketh happily:
Tria sunt quae bene gradiuntur, et quartum quod incedit feliciter :
30 A lion, the strongest of beasts, who hath no fear of any thing he meeteth:
leo, fortissimus bestiarum, ad nullius pavebit occursum;
31 A cock girded about the loins: and a ram: and a king, whom none can resist.
gallus succinctus lumbos, et aries; nec est rex, qui resistat ei.
32 There is that hath appeared a fool after he was lifted up on high: for if he had understood, he would have laid his hand upon his mouth.
Est qui stultus apparuit postquam elevatus est in sublime; si enim intellexisset, ori suo imposuisset manum.
33 And he that strongly squeezeth the paps to bring out milk, straineth out butter: and he that violently bloweth his nose, bringeth out blood: and he that provoketh wrath bringeth forth strife.
Qui autem fortiter premit ubera ad eliciendum lac exprimit butyrum; et qui vehementer emungit elicit sanguinem; et qui provocat iras producit discordias.