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1Silver hath beginnings of its veins, and gold hath a place wherein it is melted. 2Iron is taken out of the earth, and stone melted with heat is turned into brass. 3He hath set a time for darkness, and the end of all things he considereth, the stone also that is in the dark and the shadow of death. 4The flood divideth from the people that are on their journey, those whom the food of the needy man hath forgotten, and who cannot be come at. 5The land, out of which bread grew in its place, hath been overturned with fire. 6The stones of it are the place of sapphires, and the clods of it are gold. 7The bird hath not known the path, neither hath the eye of the vulture beheld it. 8The children of the merchants have not trodden it, neither hath the lioness passed by it. 9He hath stretched forth his hand to the flint, he hath overturned mountains from the roots. 10In the rocks he hath cut out rivers, and his eye hath seen every precious thing. 11The depths also of rivers he hath searched, and hidden things he hath brought forth to light. 12But where is wisdom to be found, and where is the place of understanding? 13Man knoweth not the price thereof, neither is it found in the land of them that live in delights. 14The depth saith: It is not in me: and the sea saith: It is not with me. 15The finest gold shall not purchase it, neither shall silver be weighed in exchange for it 16It shall not be compared with the dyed colours of India, or with the most precious stone sardonyx, or the sapphire. 17Gold or crystal cannot equal it, neither shall any vessels of gold be changed for it. 18High and eminent things shall not be mentioned in comparison of it: but wisdom is drawn out of secret places. 19The topaz of Ethiopia shall not be equal to it, neither shall it be compared to the cleanest dyeing. 20Whence then cometh wisdom? and where is the place of understanding? 21It is hid from the eyes of all living. and the fowls of the air know it not. 22Destruction and death have said: With our ears we have heard the fame thereof. 23God understandeth the way of it, and he knoweth the place thereof. 24For he beholdeth the ends of the world: and looketh on all things that are under heaven. 25Who made a weight for the winds and weighed the waters by measure. 26When he gave a law for the rain, and a way for the sounding storms. 27Then he saw it, and declared, and prepared, and searched it. 28And he said to man: Behold the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom: and to depart from evil, is understanding.
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