1 Truly there is a mine for silver, and a place where gold is washed out. 2 Iron is taken out of the earth, and stone is changed into brass by the fire. 3 Man puts an end to the dark, searching out to the farthest limit the stones of the deep places of the dark. 4 He makes a deep mine far away from those living in the light of day; when they go about on the earth, they have no knowledge of those who are under them, who are hanging far from men, twisting from side to side on a cord. 5 As for the earth, bread comes out of it; but under its face it is turned up as if by fire. 6 Its stones are the place of sapphires, and it has dust of gold. 7 No bird has knowledge of it, and the hawk's eye has never seen it. 8 The great beasts have not gone over it, and the cruel lion has not taken that way. 9 Man puts out his hand on the hard rock, overturning mountains by the roots. 10 He makes deep ways, cut through the rock, and his eye sees everything of value. 11 He keeps back the streams from flowing, and makes the secret things come out into the light.
12 But where may wisdom be seen? and where is the resting-place of knowledge? 13 Man has not seen the way to it, and it is not in the land of the living. 14 The deep waters say, It is not in me: and the sea says, It is not with me. 15 Gold may not be given for it, or a weight of silver in payment for it. 16 It may not be valued with the gold of Ophir, with the onyx of great price, or the sapphire. 17 Gold and glass are not equal to it in price, and it may not be exchanged for jewels of the best gold. 18 There is no need to say anything about coral or crystal; and the value of wisdom is greater than that of pearls. 19 The topaz of Ethiopia is not equal to it, and it may not be valued with the best gold.
20 From where then does wisdom come, and where is the resting-place of knowledge? 21 For it is kept secret from the eyes of all living, unseen by the birds of the air. 22 Destruction and Death say, We have only had word of it with our ears. 23 God has knowledge of the way to it, and of its resting-place; 24 For his eyes go to the ends of the earth, and he sees everything under heaven. 25 When he made a weight for the wind, measuring out the waters; 26 When he made a law for the rain, and a way for the thunder-flames; 27 Then he saw it, and put it on record; he gave it its fixed form, searching it out completely. 28 And he said to man, Truly the fear of the Lord is wisdom, and to keep from evil is the way to knowledge.