1So I returned and considered all the violence that is done under the sun and behold the tears of such as are oppressed, and they have no comforter; and on the side of their oppressors there was power; but the oppressed had no comforter.2Therefore I praised the dead who are already dead more than the living who are yet alive.3And I thought that better is he than both of them who has not yet been, who has not seen the evil works that are done under the sun.
4Again, I considered all travail and every right work, that for this a man is envied of his neighbour. This is also vanity and vexation of spirit.5The fool folds his hands together and eats his own flesh.6Better is a handful with rest than both the hands full with travail and vexation of spirit.
7Then I returned, and I saw another vanity under the sun.8It is the man who is alone, without a successor, who has neither son nor brother; yet is there no end of all his labour; neither is his eye satisfied with riches; neither saith he, For whom do I labour and bereave my soul of good? This is also vanity and sore travail.9Two are better than one because they have a better reward for their labour.10For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow; but woe to him that is alone when he falls, for he has not another to help him up.11Again, if two sleep together, then they have heat, but how can one be warm alone?12And if one prevails against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.
13Better is a poor and a wise child than an old and foolish king who will no longer be admonished.14For he came out of prison to reign, even though he was born poor into his kingdom.15I saw all the living who are under the sun walking with the child, the successor that shall stand up in his stead.16There is no end of all the people that have been before them; those also that come after shall not be content in him. Surely this also is vanity and vexation of spirit.