1 A good name is better than precious ointment, and the day of death than the day of one's birth. 2 It is better to go to the house of mourning than to go to the house of feasting; for that is the end of all men; and the living will lay it to his heart. 3 Sorrow is better than laughter; for by the sadness of the face the heart is made better. 4 The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning; but the heart of fools is in the house of laughter. 5 It is better to hear the rebuke of the wise than for a man to hear the song of fools. 6 For as the crackling of thorns under a pot, so is the laughter of the fool; this also is vanity. 7 Surely oppression makes a wise man mad; and a bribe destroys the heart. 8 Better is the end of a thing than the beginning of it; the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit. 9 Do not be hasty in your spirit to be angry; for anger rests in the bosom of fools. 10 Do not say, Why was it that the former days were better than these? For you do not ask wisely in regard to this. 11 Wisdom is good with an inheritance; but it is gain to those who see the sun. 12 For wisdom is a defense, and money is a defense; but the excellency of knowledge is that wisdom gives life to those who have it. 13 Consider the work of God; for who can make straight what He has made crooked?
14 In the day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity take note that God also has set the one over against the other, to the end that man should find nothing after him.
15 All things I have seen in the days of my vanity; there is a just one who perishes in his righteousness, and there is a wicked one who prolongs life in his wickedness. 16 Do not be righteous overmuch, neither make yourself overwise; why destroy yourself? 17 Do not be very wicked, and do not be a fool; why should you die before your time? 18 It is good that you should take hold of this; yea, also from this do not withdraw your hand; for he who fears God shall come forth from all of them.
19 Wisdom makes the wise stronger than ten mighty ones who are in the city. 20 For there is not a just man on earth who does good and does not sin.
21 Also do not listen to all words that are spoken; lest you hear your servant curse you. 22 For also your own heart knows that you yourself have also cursed others many times.
23 All this I have proved by wisdom; I said, I will be wise; but it was far from me. 24 That which is far off and exceedingly deep, who can find it out? 25 I set my heart to know, and to search, and to seek out wisdom, and the reason of things, and to know the wickedness of folly, even of foolishness and madness; 26 and I find more bitter than death the woman whose heart is snares and nets, and her hands like bands. Whoever pleases God shall escape from her, but the sinner shall be taken by her. 27 Behold, this I have found, says the Preacher, counting one by one, to find out the sum, 28 which my soul still sought, but I find not: one man among a thousand I have found, but a woman among all those I have not found. 29 Lo, this only I have found, that God has made man upright, but they have sought out many inventions.