1 I, too, am a mortal man like others, a descendant of the first human being formed from clay. My flesh was molded in a motherís womb; 2 her blood formed me for ten months from the seed of man, given in pleasure, the companion of sleep.
3 Once born, I breathed the air com mon to everyone; I fell on the earth, the same for all; my first cry was like that of other infants.
4 I was nourished, cared for and wrapped in swaddling clothes; 5 indeed, no other king began life dif ferently. 6 For there is but one way into life for all and one way out of it.
I prayed and wisdom was given to me
7 I prayed and understanding was given to me; I asked earnestly and the spirit of Wisdom came to me.
8 I preferred her to scepters and thrones and I considered wealth as nothing compared with her.
9 I preferred her to any jewel of inestimable value, since gold beside her is nothing but a few grains of sand, and silver but mud. 10 I loved her more than wealth and beauty and even preferred her to light, because her radiance never dies.
11 She brought with her all other good things, untold riches in her hands. 12 I rejoiced at all that came with Wisdom without knowing she was their mother.
13 What I learned without self-interest I share freely and with no desire to conceal her value; 14 for she is an inexhaustible treasure for man and those who possess her have gained the friendship of God, commended to him by the fruits of her discipline.
15 May God grant me to speak with discernment and reflect in a way worthy of the gifts I have received, for he is the guide of Wisdom and the corrector of the wise. 16 For we are in Godís hands, we ourselves, our words, our understanding and technical knowledge.
17 He, in fact, has given me true knowledge of what is, of the world and the properties of the elements; 18 the beginning, the end and the times in between; the alternation of the solstices and the succession of the seasons; 19 the cycles of the year and the position of the stars; 20 the natures of animal species and the ways of wild beasts; the power of spirits and human reasoning; the varieties of plants and medicinal properties of roots.
The reflection of eternal light
21 I have come to know everything we see and everything hidden, 22 because Wisdom, who designed them all, taught me.
22 In her is a spirit that is intelligent, saintly, unique, manifold, sub tle, active, concise, pure and lu cid. It cannot corrupt, loves what is good and nothing can restrain it; 23 it is beneficent, loving humankind, stead fast, dependable, calm though almighty. It sees everything and pe netrates all spirits, however intel ligent, subtle and pure they may be.
24 Wisdom, in fact, surpasses in mo bility all that moves, and being so pure pervades and permeates all things.
25 She is a breath of the power of God, a pure emanation of the glory of the Almighty; nothing impure can enter her. 26 She is a reflection of eternal light, a spotless mirror of Godís action and an image of his goodness.
27 She is but one, yet Wisdom can do all things and, herself unchanging, she renews all things. She enters holy souls, making them prophets and friends of God, 28 for God loves only those who live with Wisdom.
29 She is indeed more beautiful than the sun and surpasses all the constellations; she outrivals light, 30 for light gives way to night, but evil cannot prevail against Wisdom.