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Ecclesiastes 1

 
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1 ῥήματα Ἐκκλησιαστοῦ υἱοῦ Δαυιδ βασιλέως Ισραηλ ἐν Ιερουσαλημ 1 Words of the Spokesman,[1] king David’s son, that reigned once at Jerusalem. 1 Verba Ecclesiastæ, filii David, regis Jerusalem.
2 ματαιότης ματαιοτήτων εἶπεν ὁ Ἐκκλησιαστής ματαιότης ματαιοτήτων τὰ πάντα ματαιότης 3 τίς περισσεία τῷ ἀνθρώπῳ ἐν παντὶ μόχθῳ αὐτοῦ ᾧ μοχθεῖ ὑπὸ τὸν ἥλιον 4 γενεὰ πορεύεται καὶ γενεὰ ἔρχεται καὶ ἡ γῆ εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα ἕστηκεν 5 καὶ ἀνατέλλει ὁ ἥλιος καὶ δύνει ὁ ἥλιος καὶ εἰς τὸν τόπον αὐτοῦ ἕλκει 6 ἀνατέλλων αὐτὸς ἐκεῖ πορεύεται πρὸς νότον καὶ κυκλοῖ πρὸς βορρᾶν κυκλοῖ κυκλῶν πορεύεται τὸ πνεῦμα καὶ ἐπὶ κύκλους αὐτοῦ ἐπιστρέφει τὸ πνεῦμα 7 πάντες οἱ χείμαρροι πορεύονται εἰς τὴν θάλασσαν καὶ ἡ θάλασσα οὐκ ἔσται ἐμπιμπλαμένη εἰς τόπον οὗ οἱ χείμαρροι πορεύονται ἐκεῖ αὐτοὶ ἐπιστρέφουσιν τοῦ πορευθῆναι 8 πάντες οἱ λόγοι ἔγκοποι οὐ δυνήσεται ἀνὴρ τοῦ λαλεῖν καὶ οὐκ ἐμπλησθήσεται ὀφθαλμὸς τοῦ ὁρᾶν καὶ οὐ πληρωθήσεται οὖς ἀπὸ ἀκροάσεως 9 τί τὸ γεγονός αὐτὸ τὸ γενησόμενον καὶ τί τὸ πεποιημένον αὐτὸ τὸ ποιηθησόμενον καὶ οὐκ ἔστιν πᾶν πρόσφατον ὑπὸ τὸν ἥλιον 10 ὃς λαλήσει καὶ ἐρεῖ ἰδὲ τοῦτο καινόν ἐστιν ἤδη γέγονεν ἐν τοῖς αἰῶσιν τοῖς γενομένοις ἀπὸ ἔμπροσθεν ἡμῶν 11 οὐκ ἔστιν μνήμη τοῖς πρώτοις καί γε τοῖς ἐσχάτοις γενομένοις οὐκ ἔσται αὐτοῖς μνήμη μετὰ τῶν γενησομένων εἰς τὴν ἐσχάτην 2 A shadow’s shadow, he tells us, a shadow’s shadow; a world of shadows! 3 How is man the better for all this toiling of his, here under the sun? 4 Age succeeds age, and the world goes on unaltered. 5 Sun may rise and sun may set, but ever it goes back and is reborn. 6 Round to the south it moves, round to the north it turns; the wind, too, though it makes the round of the world, goes back to the beginning of its round at last. 7 All the rivers flow into the sea, yet never the sea grows full; back to their springs they find their way, and must be flowing still. 8 Weariness, all weariness; who shall tell the tale? Eye looks on unsatisfied; ear listens, ill content. 9 Ever that shall be that ever has been, that which has happened once shall happen again; 10 there can be nothing new, here under the sun. Never man calls a thing new, but it is something already known to the ages that went before us; 11 only we have no record of older days. So, believe me, the fame of to-morrow’s doings will be forgotten by the men of a later time. 2

Vanitas vanitatum, dixit Ecclesiastes;
vanitas vanitatum, et omnia vanitas.
3
Quid habet amplius homo
de universo labore suo quo laborat sub sole?
4

Generatio præterit, et generatio advenit;
terra autem in æternum stat.
5
Oritur sol et occidit,
et ad locum suum revertitur;
ibique renascens,
6
gyrat per meridiem, et flectitur ad aquilonem.
Lustrans universa in circuitu pergit spiritus,
et in circulos suos revertitur.
7
Omnia flumina intrant in mare,
et mare non redundat;
ad locum unde exeunt flumina
revertuntur ut iterum fluant.
8
Cunctæ res difficiles;
non potest eas homo explicare sermone.
Non saturatur oculus visu,
nec auris auditu impletur.
9
Quid est quod fuit? Ipsum quod futurum est.
Quid est quod factum est? Ipsum quod faciendum est.
10
Nihil sub sole novum,
nec valet quisquam dicere: Ecce hoc recens est:
jam enim præcessit in sæculis quæ fuerunt ante nos.
11
Non est priorum memoria;
sed nec eorum quidem quæ postea futura sunt
erit recordatio apud eos qui futuri sunt in novissimo.
12 ἐγὼ Ἐκκλησιαστὴς ἐγενόμην βασιλεὺς ἐπὶ Ισραηλ ἐν Ιερουσαλημ 13 καὶ ἔδωκα τὴν καρδίαν μου τοῦ ἐκζητῆσαι καὶ τοῦ κατασκέψασθαι ἐν τῇ σοφίᾳ περὶ πάντων τῶν γινομένων ὑπὸ τὸν οὐρανόν ὅτι περισπασμὸν πονηρὸν ἔδωκεν ὁ θεὸς τοῖς υἱοῖς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου τοῦ περισπᾶσθαι ἐν αὐτῷ 14 εἶδον σὺν πάντα τὰ ποιήματα τὰ πεποιημένα ὑπὸ τὸν ἥλιον καὶ ἰδοὺ τὰ πάντα ματαιότης καὶ προαίρεσις πνεύματος 15 διεστραμμένον οὐ δυνήσεται τοῦ ἐπικοσμηθῆναι καὶ ὑστέρημα οὐ δυνήσεται τοῦ ἀριθμηθῆναι 12 I was a king in my day, I, the Spokesman; Israel my realm, Jerusalem my capital. 13 And it was my resolve to search deep and find out the meaning of all that men do, here under the sun; all that curse of busy toil which God has given to the sons of Adam for their task. 14 All that men do beneath the sun I marked, and found it was but frustration and lost labour, all of it; 15 there was no curing men’s cross-grained nature, no reckoning up their follies. 12

Ego Ecclesiastes fui rex Israël in Jerusalem;
13
et proposui in animo meo quærere et investigare sapienter
de omnibus quæ fiunt sub sole.
Hanc occupationem pessimam
dedit Deus filiis hominum, ut occuparentur in ea.
14
Vidi cuncta quæ fiunt sub sole,
et ecce universa vanitas et afflictio spiritus.
15
Perversi difficile corriguntur,
et stultorum infinitus est numerus.
16 ἐλάλησα ἐγὼ ἐν καρδίᾳ μου τῷ λέγειν ἐγὼ ἰδοὺ ἐμεγαλύνθην καὶ προσέθηκα σοφίαν ἐπὶ πᾶσιν οἳ ἐγένοντο ἔμπροσθέν μου ἐν Ιερουσαλημ καὶ καρδία μου εἶδεν πολλά σοφίαν καὶ γνῶσιν 17 καὶ ἔδωκα καρδίαν μου τοῦ γνῶναι σοφίαν καὶ γνῶσιν παραβολὰς καὶ ἐπιστήμην ἔγνων ὅτι καί γε τοῦ{T'} ἔστιν προαίρεσις πνεύματος 18 ὅτι ἐν πλήθει σοφίας πλῆθος γνώσεως καὶ ὁ προστιθεὶς γνῶσιν προσθήσει ἄλγημα 16 I at least (so I flattered myself) have risen above the rest; a king so wise never reigned at Jerusalem;[2] here is a mind has reflected much, and much learned. 17 And therewith I applied my mind to a new study; what meant wisdom and learning, what meant ignorance and folly? And I found that this too was labour lost; 18 much wisdom, much woe; who adds to learning, adds to the load we bear. 16
Locutus sum in corde meo, dicens:
Ecce magnus effectus sum, et præcessi omnes sapientia
qui fuerunt ante me in Jerusalem;
et mens mea contemplata est multa sapienter, et didici.
17
Dedique cor meum ut scirem prudentiam atque doctrinam,
erroresque et stultitiam;
et agnovi quod in his quoque esset labor et afflictio spiritus:
18
eo quod in multa sapientia multa sit indignatio;
et qui addit scientiam, addit et laborem.
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Copyright © 2013 by Kevin Knight. Dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.