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 <<  Ecclesiastes 10 >> 

1As dead flies give perfume a bad smell, so a little folly outweighs wisdom and honour.

2The heart of the wise inclines to the right, but the heart of the fool to the left.

3Even as he walks along the road, the fool lacks sense and shows everyone how stupid he is.

4If a ruler’s anger rises against you, do not leave your post; calmness can lay great errors to rest.

5There is an evil I have seen under the sun, the sort of error that arises from a ruler:

6Fools are put in many high positions, while the rich occupy the low ones.

7I have seen slaves on horseback, while princes go on foot like slaves.

8Whoever digs a pit may fall into it; whoever breaks through a wall may be bitten by a snake.

9Whoever quarries stones may be injured by them; whoever splits logs may be endangered by them.

10If the axe is dull and its edge unsharpened, more strength is needed but skill will bring success.

11If a snake bites before it is charmed, there is no profit for the charmer.

12Words from a wise man’s mouth are gracious, but a fool is consumed by his own lips.

13At the beginning his words are folly; at the end they are wicked madness—

14and the fool multiplies words. No-one knows what is coming— who can tell him what will happen after him?

15A fool’s work wearies him; he does not know the way to town.

16Woe to you, O land whose king was a servant and whose princes feast in the morning.

17Blessed are you, O land whose king is of noble birth and whose princes eat at a proper time—for strength and not for drunkenness.

18If a man is lazy, the rafters sag; if his hands are idle, the house leaks.

19A feast is made for laughter, and wine makes life merry, but money is the answer for everything.

20Do not revile the king even in your thoughts, or curse the rich in your bedroom, because a bird of the air may carry your words, and a bird on the wing may report what you say.

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 <<  Ecclesiastes 10 >>
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