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Sirach 21

 
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1 τέκνον ἥμαρτες μὴ προσθῇς μηκέτι καὶ περὶ τῶν προτέρων σου δεήθητι 2 ὡς ἀπὸ προσώπου ὄφεως φεῦγε ἀπὸ ἁμαρτίας ἐὰν γὰρ προσέλθῃς δήξεταί σε 3 ὀδόντες λέοντος οἱ ὀδόντες αὐτῆς ἀναιροῦντες ψυχὰς ἀνθρώπων 4 ὡς ῥομφαία δίστομος πᾶσα ἀνομία τῇ πληγῇ αὐτῆς οὐκ ἔστιν ἴασις 5 καταπληγμὸς καὶ ὕβρις ἐρημώσουσιν πλοῦτον οὕτως οἶκος ὑπερηφάνου ἐρημωθήσεται 6 δέησις πτωχοῦ ἐκ στόματος ἕως ὠτίων αὐτοῦ καὶ τὸ κρίμα αὐτοῦ κατὰ σπουδὴν ἔρχεται 1 Sinned if thou hast, my son, be not emboldened to sin further; to prayer be-take thee, and efface the memory of sins past. 2 Sin dread thou not less than the serpent’s encounter; its fangs will not miss thee, if once thou come close. 3 Teeth so sharp no lion ever had, to catch human prey, 4 nor ever two-edged sword gave wound so incurable as the law’s defiance. 5 Browbeat and oppress the poor, thy own wealth shall dwindle; riches that are grown too great the proud cannot long enjoy; pride shrivels wealth. 6 Swiftly comes their doom, because the poor man’s plea reached their ears, but never their hearts.[1] 1

Fili, peccasti, non adjicias iterum:
sed et de pristinis deprecare, ut tibi dimittantur.
2
Quasi a facie colubri fuge peccata:
et si accesseris ad illa, suscipient te.
3
Dentes leonis dentes ejus,
interficientes animas hominum.
4
Quasi rhomphæa bis acuta omnis iniquitas:
plagæ illius non est sanitas.
5
Objurgatio et injuriæ annullabunt substantiam,
et domus quæ nimis locuples est annullabitur superbia:
sic substantia superbi eradicabitur.
6
Deprecatio pauperis ex ore usque ad aures ejus perveniet,
et judicium festinato adveniet illi.
7 μισῶν ἐλεγμὸν ἐν ἴχνει ἁμαρτωλοῦ καὶ ὁ φοβούμενος κύριον ἐπιστρέψει ἐν καρδίᾳ 7 Where reproof is unregarded, there goes the sinner; no God-fearing man but will come to a better mind. 7
Qui odit correptionem vestigium est peccatoris,
et qui timet Deum convertetur ad cor suum.
8 γνωστὸς μακρόθεν ὁ δυνατὸς ἐν γλώσσῃ ὁ δὲ νοήμων οἶδεν ἐν τῷ ὀλισθάνειν αὐτόν 8 To the glib speaker, fame comes from far and wide; only the wise man knows the slips of his own heart. 8
Notus a longe potens lingua audaci,
et sensatus scit labi se ab ipso.
9 ὁ οἰκοδομῶν τὴν οἰκίαν αὐτοῦ ἐν χρήμασιν ἀλλοτρίοις ὡς συνάγων αὐτοῦ τοὺς λίθους εἰς χειμῶνα 9 Wouldst thou build thy fortunes on earnings that are none of thine? As well mightest thou lay in stones for winter fuel. 9
Qui ædificat domum suam impendiis alienis,
quasi qui colligat lapides suos in hieme.
10 στιππύον συνηγμένον συναγωγὴ ἀνόμων καὶ ἡ συντέλεια αὐτῶν φλὸξ πυρός 10 When knaves come together, it is like heaping up tow; the flame burns all the brighter. 10
Stupa collecta synagoga peccantium,
et consummatio illorum flamma ignis.
11 ὁδὸς ἁμαρτωλῶν ὡμαλισμένη ἐκ λίθων καὶ ἐ{P'} ἐσχάτων αὐτῆς βόθρος ᾅδου 11 How smoothly paved is the path of sinners! Yet death lies at the end of it, and darkness, and doom. 11
Via peccatorum complanata lapidibus:
et in fine illorum inferi, et tenebræ, et pœnæ.
12 ὁ φυλάσσων νόμον κατακρατεῖ τοῦ ἐννοήματος αὐτοῦ 13 καὶ συντέλεια τοῦ φόβου κυρίου σοφία 14 οὐ παιδευθήσεται ὃς οὐκ ἔστιν πανοῦργος 15 ἔστιν δὲ πανουργία πληθύνουσα πικρίαν 16 γνῶσις σοφοῦ ὡς κατακλυσμὸς πληθυνθήσεται καὶ ἡ βουλὴ αὐτοῦ ὡς πηγὴ ζωῆς 12 If thou wouldst be master of thy own thought, first keep the law; 13 no wisdom or discernment but is the fruit of God’s fear. 14 Without shrewdness[2] thou wilt never advance in the school of virtue; 15 yet shrewdness there is that breeds abundance of mischief; where the stream runs foul, there can be no rightness of mind. 16 Where true wisdom is, there discernment flows in full tide, there prudence springs up, an inexhaustible fountain of life. 12

Qui custodit justitiam, continebit sensum ejus.
13
Consummatio timoris Dei, sapientia et sensus.
14
Non erudietur
qui non est sapiens in bono.
15
Est autem sapientia quæ abundat in malo,
et non est sensus ubi est amaritudo.
16
Scientia sapientis tamquam inundatio abundabit,
et consilium illius sicut fons vitæ permanet.
17 ἔγκατα μωροῦ ὡς ἀγγεῖον συντετριμμένον καὶ πᾶσαν γνῶσιν οὐ κρατήσει 18 λόγον σοφὸν ἐὰν ἀκούσῃ ἐπιστήμων αἰνέσει αὐτὸν καὶ ἐ{P'} αὐτὸν προσθήσει ἤκουσεν ὁ σπαταλῶν καὶ ἀπήρεσεν αὐτῷ καὶ ἀπέστρεψεν αὐτὸν ὀπίσω τοῦ νώτου αὐτοῦ 19 ἐξήγησις μωροῦ ὡς ἐν ὁδῷ φορτίον ἐπὶ δὲ χείλους συνετοῦ εὑρεθήσεται χάρις 20 στόμα φρονίμου ζητηθήσεται ἐν ἐκκλησίᾳ καὶ τοὺς λόγους αὐτοῦ διανοηθήσονται ἐν καρδίᾳ 21 ὡς οἶκος ἠφανισμένος οὕτως μωρῷ σοφία καὶ γνῶσις ἀσυνέτου ἀδιεξέταστοι λόγοι 22 πέδαι ἐν ποσὶν ἀνοήτου παιδεία καὶ ὡς χειροπέδαι ἐπὶ χειρὸς δεξιᾶς 23 μωρὸς ἐν γέλωτι ἀνυψοῖ φωνὴν αὐτοῦ ἀνὴρ δὲ πανοῦργος μόλις ἡσυχῇ μειδιάσει 24 ὡς κόσμος χρυσοῦς φρονίμῳ παιδεία καὶ ὡς χλιδὼν ἐπὶ βραχίονι δεξιῷ 25 ποὺς μωροῦ ταχὺς εἰς οἰκίαν ἄνθρωπος δὲ πολύπειρος αἰσχυνθήσεται ἀπὸ προσώπου 26 ἄφρων ἀπὸ θύρας παρακύπτει εἰς οἰκίαν ἀνὴρ δὲ πεπαιδευμένος ἔξω στήσεται 27 ἀπαιδευσία ἀνθρώπου ἀκροᾶσθαι παρὰ θύραν ὁ δὲ φρόνιμος βαρυνθήσεται ἀτιμίᾳ 28 χείλη ἀλλοτρίων ἐν τούτοις διηγήσονται λόγοι δὲ φρονίμων ἐν ζυγῷ σταθήσονται 29 ἐν στόματι μωρῶν ἡ καρδία αὐτῶν καρδία δὲ σοφῶν στόμα αὐτῶν 17 Heart of fool is leaking bucket, that loses all the wisdom it learns. 18 Truths that wisdom will prize and cherish, the profligate hears no less, but hearing despises, and casts them to the winds. 19 Listening to a fool is like journeying with a heavy pack; there is no pleasing the ear, where sense is none. 20 How they hang on the lips of a wise man, the folk assembled, ay, and ponder in their hearts over the word said! 21 A fool takes refuge in wise talk as a man takes shelter in a ruin; learning without sense, that cannot abide scrutiny. 22 To the fool, instruction seems but a fetter to clog him, gyves that cramp his wrist. 23 A fool laughs loud; smiling, the wise compress their lips. 24 Precious as an ornament of gold, close-fitting as a bracelet to the right arm, is instruction to a wise man. 25 Folly sets foot over every threshold, where the experienced mind stands, as in a royal presence, abashed; 26 folly peeps in at windows, where experience waits patiently without; 27 listens thoughtlessly behind open doors, where prudence hangs back for very shame.[3] 28 Fools break out into rash utterance, where the prudent are at pains to weigh their words; 29 with the one, to think is to speak, with the other, to speak is to think. 17
Cor fatui quasi vas confractum,
et omnem sapientiam non tenebit.
18
Verbum sapiens quodcumque audierit scius,
laudabit, et ad se adjiciet:
audivit luxuriosus, et displicebit illi,
et projiciet illud post dorsum suum.
19
Narratio fatui quasi sarcina in via:
nam in labiis sensati invenietur gratia.
20
Os prudentis quæritur in ecclesia,
et verba illius cogitabunt in cordibus suis.
21
Tamquam domus exterminata, sic fatuo sapientia:
et scientia insensati inenarrabilia verba.
22
Compedes in pedibus, stulto doctrina:
et quasi vincula manuum super manum dextram.
23
Fatuus in risu exaltat vocem suam:
vir autem sapiens vix tacite ridebit.
24
Ornamentum aureum prudenti doctrina,
et quasi brachiale in brachio dextro.
25
Pes fatui facilis in domum proximi:
et homo peritus confundetur a persona potentis.
26
Stultus a fenestra respiciet in domum:
vir autem eruditus foris stabit.
27
Stultitia hominis auscultare per ostium:
et prudens gravabitur contumelia.
28
Labia imprudentium stulta narrabunt;
verba autem prudentium statera ponderabuntur.
29
In ore fatuorum cor illorum,
et in corde sapientium os illorum.
30 ἐν τῷ καταρᾶσθαι ἀσεβῆ τὸν σατανᾶν αὐτὸς καταρᾶται τὴν ἑαυτοῦ ψυχήν 31 μολύνει τὴν ἑαυτοῦ ψυχὴν ὁ ψιθυρίζων καὶ ἐν παροικήσει μισηθήσεται 30 Let the sinner curse the foul fiend that spites him,[4] on his own head the curse shall recoil. 31 The tale-bearer is his own enemy, shunned by all; court his friendship, and thou wilt court hatred; shut lips and calm judgement shall bring thee a good name. 30
Dum maledicit impius diabolum,
maledicit ipse animam suam.
31
Susurro coinquinabit animam suam, et in omnibus odietur,
et qui cum eo manserit odiosus erit:
tacitus et sensatus honorabitur.
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Copyright © 2013 by Kevin Knight. Dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.