and dwelt upon the earth: but the way of knowledge have they not known,

8 Nor understood the paths thereof, nor laid hold of it: their children were far off from that way.

9 Who hath gone up into heaven, and taken her, and brought her down from the clouds?

10 Who hath gone over the sea, and found her, and will bring her for pure gold?

11 No man knoweth her way, nor thinketh of her path.

12 But He that knoweth all things knoweth her, and hath found her out with his understanding: He that prepared the earth for evermore hath filled it with fourfooted beasts:

13 He that sendeth forth light, and it goeth, calleth it again, and it obeyeth him with


14 The stars shined in their watches, and rejoiced: when He calleth them, they say, Here we be; and so with cheerfulness they shewed light unto him that made them.

15 This is our God, and there shall none other be accounted of in comparison of him.

16 The fear of the Lord is all wisdom; and in all wisdom is the performance of the law, and the knowledge of his omnipotency.


I CALLED upon the Lord, the Father of my Lord, that he

would not leave me in the days of my trouble, and in the time of the proud, when there was no help.

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2 I will praise thy name continually, and will sing praise with thanksgiving; and so my prayer was heard :

3 For thou savedst me from destruction, and deliveredst me from the evil time: therefore will I give thanks, and praise thee, and bless thy name, O Lord.

4 When I was yet young, or ever I went abroad, I desired wisdom openly in my prayer.

5 I prayed for her before the temple, and will seek her out even to the end.

6 Even from the flower till the grape was ripe hath my heart delighted in her my foot went the right way, from my youth up sought I after her.

7 I bowed down mine ear a little, and received her, and gat much learning.

8 I profited therein, therefore will I ascribe the glory unto him that giveth me wisdom.

9 For I purposed to do after her, and earnestly I followed that which is good; so shall I not be confounded.

10 My soul hath wrestled with her, and in my doings I was exact: I stretched forth my hands to the heaven above, and bewailed my ignorances of her.

11 I directed my soul unto her, and I found her in pureness: I have had my heart joined with her from the beginning, therefore shall I not be forsaken.

12 My heart was troubled in seeking her therefore have I gotten a good possession.


13 The Lord hath given me a tongue for my reward, and I will praise him therewith.

14 Draw near unto me, ye unlearned, and dwell in the house of learning.

15 Wherefore are ye slow, and what say ye of these things, seeing your souls are very thirsty?

16 I opened my mouth, and said, Buy her for yourselves without money.

17 Put your neck under the yoke, and let your soul receive instruction: she is hard at hand to find.

18 Behold with your eyes, how that I have had but little labour, and have gotten unto me much rest.

19 Get learning with a great sum of money, and get much gold by her.

20 Let your soul rejoice in his

mercy, and be not ashamed of his praise.

21 Work your work betimes, and in his time he will give you your reward.


I PRAYED, and understanding was given me: I called upon God, and the spirit of wisdom came to me.

2 I preferred her before sceptres and thrones, and esteemed riches nothing in comparison of her.

3 Neither compared I unto her any precious stone, because all gold in respect of her is as a

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5 All good things together came to me with her, and innumerable riches in her hands.

6 And I rejoiced in them all, because wisdom goeth before them: and I knew not that she was the mother of them.

7 I learned diligently, and do communicate her liberally': I do not hide her riches.

8 For she is a treasure unto men that never faileth: which they that use become the friends of God, being commended for the gifts that come from learning.

9 God hath granted me to speak as I would, and to conceive as is meet for the things that are given me: because it is he that leadeth unto wisdom, and directeth the wise.

10 For in his hand are both we and our words; all wisdom also, and knowledge of workmanship.

11 For he hath given me certain knowledge of the things that are, namely, to know how the world was made, and the operation of the elements:

12 The beginning, ending, and midst of the times: the alterations of the turning of the sun, and the change of seasons:

13 The circuits of years, and the positions of stars :

14 The natures of living creatures, and the furies of wild beasts the violence of winds,


and the reasonings of men: the diversities of plants, and the virtues of roots :

15 And all such things as are either secret or manifest, them I know.

16 For wisdom, which is the worker of all things, taught me : for in her is an understanding spirit, holy, one only, manifold, subtil, lively, clear, undefiled, plain, not subject to hurt, loving the thing that is good, quick, which cannot be letted, ready to do good,

17 Kind to man, steadfast, sure, free from care, having all power, overseeing all things, and going through all understanding, pure, and most subtil, spirits.

18 For wisdom is more moving than any motion: she passeth and goeth through all things by reason of her pureness.

19 For she is the breath of the power of God, and a pure influence flowing from the glory of the Almighty: therefore can no defiled thing fall into her.

20. For she is the brightness of the everlasting light, the unspotted mirror of the power of God, and the image of his good


21 And being but one, she can do all things: and remaining in herself, she maketh all things new: and in all ages entering into holy souls, she maketh them friends of God, and prophets.

22 For God loveth none but him that dwelleth with wisdom. 23 For she is more beautiful than the sun, and above all the

order of stars: being compared with the light, she is found before it.

24 For after this cometh night: but vice shall not prevail against wisdom.


WISDOM reacheth from one end to another mightily: and sweetly doth she order all things.

2 I loved her, and sought her out from my youth, I desired to make her my spouse, and I was a lover of her beauty.

3 In that she is conversant with God, she magnifieth her nobility: yea, the Lord of all things himself loved her.

4 For she is privy to the mysteries of the knowledge of God, and a lover of his works.

5 If riches be a possession to be desired in this life; what is richer than wisdom, that worketh all things?

6 And if prudence work; who of all that are is a more cunning workman than she?

7 And if a man love righteousness, her labours are virtues: for she teacheth temperance and prudence, justice and fortitude: which are such things, as men can have nothing more profitable in their life.

8 If a man desire much experience, she knoweth things of old, and conjectureth aright what is to come: she knoweth the subtleties of speeches, and can expound dark sentences: she foreseeth signs and wonders and the events of seasons and times.

9 Therefore I purposed to take her to me to live with me, knowing that she would be a counseller of good things, and a comfort in cares and grief.

10 For her sake I shall have estimation among the multitude, and honour with the elders, though I be young.

11 Moreover by the means of her, I shall obtain immortality, and leave behind me an everlasting memorial to them that come after me.

12 I shall set the people in order, and the nations shall be subject unto me.

13 Horrible tyrants shall be afraid, when they do but hear of me; I shall be found good among the multitude, and valiant in war.

14 After I am come into mine house, I will repose myself with her for her conversation hath no bitterness; and to live with her hath no sorrow, but mirth and joy.

15 Now when I considered these things in myself, and pondered them in my heart, how that to be allied unto wisdom is immortality;

16 And great pleasure it is to have her friendship; and in the works of her hands are infinite riches; and in the exercise of conference with her, prudence; and in talking with her, a good report; I went about seeking how to take her to me.

17 Nevertheless, when I perceived that I could not otherwise obtain her, except God gave her me; (and that was a point of wisdom also to know

whose gift she was ;) I prayed unto the Lord, and besought him, and with my whole heart I said;

LESSON XLIII. Prayer for Wisdom. O GOD of my fathers, and Lord of mercy, who hast made all things with thy word,

2 And ordained man through thy wisdom, that he should have dominion over the creatures which thou hast made,

3 And order the world according to equity and righteousness, and execute judgement with an upright heart,

4 Give me wisdom, that sitteth by thy throne; and reject me not from among thy children:

5 For I, thy servant and son of thine handmaid, am a feeble person, and of a short time, and too young for the understanding of judgement and laws.

6 For though a man be never so perfect among the children of men, yet if thy wisdom be not with him, he shall be nothing regarded.

7 Thou hast chosen me to be a king of thy people, and a judge of thy sons and daugh

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which knoweth thy works, and was present when thou madest the world, and knew what was acceptable in thy sight, and right in thy commandments. 10 O send her out of thy holy heavens, and from the throne of thy glory, that being present she may labour with me, that I may know what is pleasing unto thee.

11 For she knoweth and understandeth all things, and she shall lead me soberly in my doings, and preserve me in her power.

12 So shall my works be acceptable, and then shall I judge thy people righteously, and be worthy to sit in my father's seat.

13 For what man is he that can know the counsel of God? or who can think what the will of the Lord is?

14 For the thoughts of mortal men are miserable, and our devices are but uncertain.

15 For the corruptible body presseth down the soul, and the earthy tabernacle weigheth down the mind that museth upon many things.

16 And hardly do we guess aright at things that are upon earth, and with labour do we find the things that are before us: but the things that are in heaven who hath searched out?

17 And thy counsel who hath known, except thou give wisdom, and send thy Holy Spirit from above?

18 For so the ways of them which lived on the earth were reformed, and men were taught the things that are pleasing unto thee, and were saved through wisdom.

SECTION XVIII.-History of the Jews.


AND the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,

2 Go thy way, and shew my people their sinful deeds, and their children their wickedness which they have done against me; that they may tell their children's children :

3 Because the sins of their fathers are increased in them: for they have forgotten me, and have offered unto strange gods.

4 Am not I even he that brought them out of the land. of Egypt, from the house of

bondage? but they have provoked me unto wrath, and despised my counsels.

5 Pull thou off then the hair of thy head, and cast all evil upon them, for they have not been obedient unto my law, but it is a rebellious people.

6 How long shall I forbear them, unto whom I have done so much good?

7 Many kings have I destroyed for their sakes; Pharaoh with his servants and all his power have I smitten down.

8 All the nations have I destroyed before them, and in the

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