1 The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem.
2 Vanity of vanities, said the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity.
3 What profit has a man of all his labor which he takes under the sun?
4 One generation passes away, and another generation comes: but the earth stays for ever.
5 The sun also rises, and the sun goes down, and hastens to his place where he arose.
6 The wind goes toward the south, and turns about to the north; it whirls about continually, and the wind returns again according to his circuits.
7 All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; to the place from where the rivers come, thither they return again.
8 All things are full of labor; man cannot utter it: the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing.
9 The thing that has been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.
10 Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it has been already of old time, which was before us.
11 There is no remembrance of former things; neither shall there be any remembrance of things that are to come with those that shall come after.
12 I the Preacher was king over Israel in Jerusalem.
13 And I gave my heart to seek and search out by wisdom concerning all things that are done under heaven: this sore travail has God given to the sons of man to be exercised therewith.
14 I have seen all the works that are done under the sun; and, behold, all is vanity and vexation of spirit.
15 That which is crooked cannot be made straight: and that which is wanting cannot be numbered.
16 I communed with my own heart, saying, See, I am come to great estate, and have gotten more wisdom than all they that have been before me in Jerusalem: yes, my heart had great experience of wisdom and knowledge.
17 And I gave my heart to know wisdom, and to know madness and folly: I perceived that this also is vexation of spirit.
18 For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increases knowledge increases sorrow.