Abbildungen der Seite

mind, will leave him in danger that delivered him. Suretiship hath undone many of good estate, and shaken thein as a wave of the sea: mighty men hath it driven from their houses, so that they wandered among strange nations. Hear me, 0 ye great men of the people, and hearken with your ears, ye rulers of the congregation, Give not thy son and wife, thy brother and friend, power over thee while thou livest, and give not thy goods to another: lest it repent thee, and thou intreat for the same again. As long as thou livest and hast breath in thee, give not thyself over to any. For better it is that thy children should seek to thee, than that thou shouldest stand to their courtesy. In all thy works keep to thyself the preeminence; leave not a stain in thine honour. At the time when thou shalt end thy days, and finish thy life, distribute thine inheritance. Have regard to thy name; for that shall continue with thee above a thousand great treasures of gold.

[ocr errors][merged small]

Hast thou cattle? have an eye to them: and if they be for thy profit keep them with thee. Hlast thou children? instruct them, and bow down their neck from their youth. An horse not broken becometh headstrong: and a child left to himself will be wilful. Give him no liberty in his youth, and wink not at his follies. Marry thy daughter, and so shalt thou have performed a weighty matter: but give her to a man of understanding. Honour thy father with thy whole heart, and forget not the sorrows of thy mother. Remember that thou wast begotten of them; and how canst thou recompense them the things that they have done for thee? If their understanding fail, have patience with them ; and despise them not when thou art in thy full strength. In the day of thine affliction it shall be remembered; thy sins also shall melt away, as the ice in the fair warm weather. Lend to thy neighbour in time of his need, and pay thou thy neighbour again in due season. Keep thy word, and deal faithfully with him, and thou shalt always find the thing that is necessary for thee. Let not thine hand be stretched out to receive, and shut when thou shouldest repay. Many, when a thing was lent them, reckoned it to be found, and put them to trouble that helped them. Till he hath received, he will kiss a man's hand; and for his neighbour's money he will speak submissively; but when he should repay,

he will prolong the time, and return words of grief, and complain of the time. Many therefore have refused to lend for other men's ill deale ing, fearing to be defrauded: yet have thou patience with a man in poor estate, and delay not to shew him mercy. Deliver all things in number and weight; and put all in writing that thou givest out, or receivest in. Eose thy money for thy brother and thy friend, and let it not rust under a stone to be lost. Be not hasty in thy tongue, and in thy deeds slack and remiss. Be not as a lion in thy house, nor frantic among thy servants. If thou set thy servant to labour, thou shalt find rest : but if thou let him go idle, he shall seek liberty. Send him to labour, that he be not idle ; for idleness teacheth much evil. Set him to work, as is fit for him: but be not excessive toward any; and without discretion do nothing. If thou have a servant, entreat him as a brother: for thou hast need of him, as of thine own soul: if thou entreat him evil, and he run from thee, which way wilt thou go to seek him? Whereas thy servant worketh truly, entreat him not evil, nor the hireling that bestoweth himself wholly for thee. Let thy soul love a good servant, and defraud him not of liberty. Be not ashamed to inform the unwise and foolish, and she extreme aged that contendeth with those that are young : thus shalt thou be truly learned, and approved of all men living. Learn before thou speak, and use physic or ever thou be sick. When thou hast enough, remember the time of hunger: and when thou art rich, think upon poverty and need. Go not in a way wherein thou mayest fall, and stumble not among the stones. Be not confident in a plain way. Do nothing without advice: and when thou hast once done, repent not. Whatsoever thou takest in hand, remember the end, and thou shalt never do amiss. Laugh no man to scorn in the bitterness of his soul: for there is one which humbleth and exalteth.

From the same.

Speak, young man, if there be need of thee: and yet scarcely when thou art twice asked. Let thy speech be short, comprehending much in few words; be as one that knoweth and yet holdeth his tongue. If thou be among great men, make not thyself equal with them; and when ancient men are in place, use not many words. Before the thunder goeth lightning: and before a shamefaced man shall go favour. Observe the opportunity, and beware of evil; and

be not ashamed, when it concerneth thy soul. For there is a shame that bringeth sin: and there is a shame which is glory and grace. Accept no person against thy soul, and let not the reverence of any man cause thee to fall. Who will justify him that sinneth against his own soul? and who will honour him that dishonoureth his own life. Be not ashamed to confess thy sins, and refrain not to speak, when there is occasion to do good. For by speech wisdom shall be known: and learning by the word of the tougue. Look that thou hedge thy possession about with thorns, and bind up thy silver and gold. And weigh thy words in a balance, and make a door and bar for thy mouth. Rise up betimes, and be not the last : but get thee home without delay. There take thy pastime, and do what thou wilt : but sin not by proud speech. And for these things bless him that made thee, and hath replenished thee with his good things.

From the same.

Miss not the discourse of the elders: for they also learned of their fathers, and of them thou. shalt learn understanding, and to give answer as

« ZurückWeiter »