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ject, because I find even Maldonate himself, in his Men may deliberate, and contrive, and order in their notes upon this place, hath the confidence to con- mind, whát and in what manner and method they clude the pope must needs have this privilege, which will speak; but whether they shall persuade and preis promised to kings; when it is apparent, kings vail, or no, for such an answer as they expect; nay, be are not infallible, and consequently, by his own able to deliver themselves with such' elocution as they reasoning, popes cannot be so.
imagine, cannot be resolved by them, but depends There are other notable sentences which would de. upon the pleasare of the Lord. Ste Arg: [a]
serve a larger gloss than I have given in this para Ver. 2. All the ways of a man are clean in his own phrase, which I must pass by; because this preface eyes; but the LORD weigbeth the spirits.] Such is the is already prolonged to a great length.
blindness of self-love, that men can find no fault in [d] I shall only therefore mention two. One, ver. 21. themselves, but imagine all that they contrive and
where wisdom and eloquence are compared to do to be free from blame; which when the Lord ex:
wicked as to oppose his will, he will not lose their [e] The other is ver. 26. where I have put two senses service ; but when he brings a public calamity upon
together, according to the different acceptions of the a country, employ them to be the executioners of
he digs a pit for himself, and the words he speaks beyond all expression unto the Lord, who will take
' a man's ways please the Lord, be others honestly interpret of those calumnies, dis- maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him.] The cords, seditions, which evil men raise by their best way to have our enemies reconciled unto us, is tongues, to the destruction of their neighbours. for us to be reconciled unto God'; for such is the reFor so it follows, ver. 28. “A froward man soweth vérence men bear tó virtue, and such is the love strife,” &c.
which the Lord hath to virtuous person's, that when
all their designs and actions are such as he approves, THE preparations of the heart in man, and the he inclines even cliose that were their foes to become
answer of the tongue, is from the LORD] their friends.
Ver. 8. Better is a little with righteousness, than Ver. 16. How much better is it to get wisdom than great revenues without right.] A small estate honestly gold ? and to get understanding, rather to be chosen than gotten, and charitably enjoyed, is much to be pre- silver] But after all is done, to get so much wis. ferred before vast incomes heaped up by oppression, dom as to kuow the difference between good and evil, and kept without hospitality.
and to understand how to behave a man's self upon Ver. 2. A man's heart deviseth his way ; but the all occasions, is beyond all expression better, and more LORD directeth his steps.] The mind of man de, to be chosen, than the greatest treasure of gold and signs an end, and contrives what means to use, and silver, which either the favour of princes can give, reckons perhaps what success they will have ; but or his own industry acquire. the Lord determines what the event shall be, and or Ver. 17. The high-way of ihe upright is to depart ders his motions, perhaps to such an issue as never from evil: he that keepeth his way preserveth his soul.] came into his thoughts.
This is the constant aim and endeavour of upright Ver. 10. A divine sentince is in the lips of the king; men, the beaten path, as we may call it, in which they Lis mouth transgressetly not in judgement.] God is pre- travel, to decline every thing that is evil; and he who sent in a singular' manner into a pious king, inspi- makes this his care, looking well to all his actions, ring his mind to divine sigaciously in dubious and ob. that he do nothing amiss, looks well to himself, and scure things, that his resolutions and decrees may be preserves his soul and body fron destruction, received like oracles, and all causes be decided by Ver. 18. Pride goeth before destruction ; and an hiin so justly and exac:ly, that no man be wronged haughty spirit before a fall.] lasolent behaviour is in the judgement which he passes.
See Arg. [c]
the forerunner of utter destraction ; and when men Ver. 11. A just weight and balance are the Lord's; lift up themselves in their own thoughts, and overall the weights of the bag are bis work.] And it is wor- look all ochers with contempt, they are in the greatthy of his care, that there be no corruption in private, est danger to stumble, and not to see that which will no more than in public justice, for it also is of divine give them such a dreadful downfall, as will break institution, the great Lord of all requiring just and them all to shivers. equal dealing in all our commerce one with another, Ver. 19. Better it is to be of an bumble spirit with which he hath ordained should be managed with scru. the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud.] pulous integrity, in the smallest, as well as in the Therefore it is much better to submit to the meanest greatest matters.
condition, nay, patiently to bear injuries with afflictVer. 12. It is an abomination to kings to commit wice ed, but meek and lowly persons, than to lift one's kedness ; for the throne is established by righteousness.] self to the prejudice of others, and by trampling upon It is not enough to good kings that they do no inju. them, to partake with the proud in their rapine and ry, but they abominate, with the highest detestation, spoil. all oppression, cruelty, extortion, &c. not only in Ver. 20. He that bandleth a matter wisely, sball themselves, but in others, for they know that justice, find good; and whoso trusteth in the LORD, bappy is mercy, and true religion, support their authority, and be.] He that understands his business thoroughly, make their kingdoms durable.
and manages it prudently and discreetly, is likely Ver. 13. Righteous lips are the delight of kings; and to have good success; but none so happy, none so they love him that speaketh right.] and calumnia- sure of prospering in his design, as he that confides tors or flatterers find no acceptance with such princes, more in the Lord, than in his own skill and industry. but they delight in those that will not deceive them Ver. 21. Tbe wise in beart shall be called prudent, by false, unjust, and malicious informations; and and the sweetness of the lips increaseth learning.] He make him their favourite, who deals sincerely and whose mind is well furnisned with wisdom, cannot tells them the truth, though it may seemn ungrateful but win a great reputation, and be highly esteemed to thein.
for his prudent counsels and resolutions ; but if he Ver. 14. The wrath of a king is as messengers of have the powerful charms of eloquence" also, to condeath ; but a wise man will pacify it.] The wrath of vey his mind delightfully unto others, it will add a a king strikes such terror into him with whom he greater value to his wisdom, and make it more diffuis offended, as if the sentence of death were pronoun. sive and instructive unto the world. See Arg. [d] ced against him ; but, as ill men and fools exasperate Ver. 22. Understanding is a well-spring of life writo it more, so a virtuous and prudent courtier appeases bim tbat bath it ; but the instruction of fools is folly.] his anger, and makes a reconciliation.
A clear understanding and right judgement of things, Ver. 15. In the light of the king's countenance is life, like an unexhaustible spring, gives perpetual comfort and his favour is as a cloud of the latter rain.] And to him in whom it is, and makes him very useful unto when a king will be pleased to look graciously upon others; but the learning of fools is frivolous and a man, especially after he hath been incensed against vain, and therefore, if they undertake to instruct him, it not only revives, but gives him the greatest others, they only make them like themselves. joy; for from his favour he promises himself all Ver. 23. The heart of the wise' teacbetb bis mouth, manner of happiness, as a plentiful harvest follows and addeth learning to his lips.] The mind of a wise the : showers of rain, which in the spring refresh man instructs him to speak judiciously and pertinentthe corn,
ly; and makes him not only communicate his thoughts
to others, but with such weight of reason as increases tuous and useful'; which is the best way also to protheir learning
long one's days, and bring one to that great honour Ver. 24. Pleasant words are as an boney-comb, sweet which is due to those who have long done much good to the soul, and health to the bones.] Especially when to mankind. he can deliver his mind in pleasing and delightful Ver. 32. He that is slow to anger, is better than the words, flowing from him with a natural eloquence, as mighty, and be that ruletb bis spirit, than he that tahoney-drops from the comb ; which ravish the affec. ketb a city.] He that can suppress the vehement motions, and touch a man's heart to the very quick; tions of anger, deserves more praise than those mighty when he needs either comfort or cure for any inward men who quell the enemies that oppose them; and he disease wherewith he labours.
that hath power to govern all his own inclinations, Ver. 25. There is a way that seemeth right unto a affections, and passions by reason, hath a nobler ema man, but the end thereof are tbe ways of death.] But pire than he that subdues cities and countries by force there is never more need of caution, than when we
of arms. hear a moving orator ; therefore this instruction may Ver. 33. The lot is cast into the lap; but the whole bëhere necessary to be repeated, (xiv. 12.); examine disposing thereof is of the LORD.] Acknowledge the every thing strictly and impartially, and be not led divine providence in all things, even in those which away merely by thy fancy, and thy appetite ; for seem most casual ; for though men cast the lots into they make many things seem innocent, which in the lap of a garment, or into a hollow vessel, and themselves, and in the issue, are deadly and destruc- thence draw them out again, yet it is the Lord who tive.
directs entirely in what order they shall come forth, Ver. 26. He that laboureth, laboureth for bimself ; and so determines the matter in doubt according to his for his mouth craveth it of him.] It is a powerful mo- pleasure. tive to a man to take pains in an honest employment, that all his labour is for his own preservation, his
C H A P. XVII.
A mouth begging this favour of him, that he may not starve; and, on the contrary, he that spends his time THE ARGUMENT:- In the first verse of this chapter, the in giving trouble and vexation unto others, will find --wise man observes how happy that family is, which it fall upon himself, for he cannot speak so much as lives in peace and perfect agreement one with anan evil word, but it will return upon him, and fly other, though they have but a mean estate. And next back in his own face. See Arg. [e]
to this, how happy a thing it is, if there be but one Ver. 27. An ungodly man diggeth up evil; and in wise and virtuous man in a family, (suppose he be bis lips there is a burning fire.] And it is not a little but a servant), when any dissensions and differences pains that an ungodly lawless inan takes, to plot and arise in it. For so the Lord Bacon (Advanc. of devise mischief, wherein he labours, as if he was dig Learning, book viii, chap. 2. Parab. 2.) expounds ging for a treasure ; and one way is, to brand his the [a] second verse ; whose words I will set down, neighbour with false reports and slanders, and there because if they hit. not the sense completely, yet by ntterly destroy his reputation.
they very pithily express a part of it, and carry Ver. 28. A froward man soweth strife, and a whis in them a very important truth. “ In all troubled perer separateth chief friends.] Others of them have and disagreeing families,” saith he, “there is com. such a perverseness in their spirit, that it is their busi monly some servant or gentle friend, who being ness to disturb the world, and raise dissensions among powerful with both sides, may moderate and comthose that would live in peace, by backbiting, detracing, pose the differences that are among them. To and whispering false stories ; making a breach even whom, in that respect, the whole house, and the between princes and people, husband and wife, nay, master himself, are much engaged and beholden. the dearest friends and familiars, if they hearken to This servant, if he aim only at his own ends, their tales.
cherishes and aggravates the divisions of the famiVer. 29. A violent man enticetb bis neighbour, and ly; but if he be sincerely faithful and upright, cerleadetb bim into the way that is not good. Another tainly he deserveth much, so as to be reckoned as sort live by rapine and open violence, who are not one of the brethren, or at least, to receive a fidu. content to do wrong themselves, but persuade others ciary administration of the inheritance." to enter into their society, and then lead them into [b] And after some other documents, there follow's 2: the most pernicious courses.
notable rule for the making peace, and ending all Ver. 30. He sbuttetb bis eyes to devise froward diferences, whicther between particular persons tbings; moving bis lips, be bringeth evil to pass.] Which in families, or between kingdoms, ver. 9. ; upon they do not fall into by chance, but with profound which the same great person thus glosses, (ib. pastudy contrive the ruin of others, and the sign being sab. 27.) “ There are two ways of proceeding to given, they furiously execute the mischief they have arbitrate differences, and reconcile affections. I he designed.
one begins with an act of oblivion of what is past; Ver. 31. The boary bead is a crown of glory, if it the other begins with a repetition of wrongs, sabbe found in the way of righteousness.] Old age is very joining apologies and excuses. Now, some think venerable, when a man's past life hath been truly vir this last to be the only way; insomuch that I
. have heard a prudent person and great statesman : fierce creature ; the second is, that the female is
lay down this maxim:- he that treats of peace, with, more fierce than the male ; the third, that she is out a recapitulation of the terms of difference, rather more fierce than ordinary, when she hath whelps ; deceives men's minds with the sweet name of agree and lastly, that when she is robbed of them, she is ment, than composes them by equity and modera- · fiercest of all, immanem in modum, even unto rage tion of right.--But Solomon, a wiser man than he, and madness. Which the scripture takes notice of in is of a contrary opinion, approving an act of ob two other places besides this, 2 Sam. xvii. 8. Hos. liyion, and forbidding repetition. For in repeti. xii. 8. ; 'where Saint Hierom observes that the tion, or renewing the memory of the causes of dif writers of natural history say, among all wild ference, there are these inconveniences ; not only beasts, none more fierce and cruel than the bear, that it is, as we say, unguis in ulcere, raking in the in two cases especially, when she wants food, and ulcer, wlricla very much exasperates, but also en when she is robbed of her whelps. The reason of dangers the breeding of new quarrels, while they this last is there given by Kimchi; which well are debating the old, (for the parties at difference enough agrees with the comparison which the wisa will never accord about the terms of their falling man heré makes ; for a bear cannot be more in out); and lastly, in the issue it brings the matter love with her whelps, than a fool is with his ab. to apologies; whereas both the cne and the other surd opinions and resolutioris ; and as a bear falls party would seem rather to have remitted the of upon the next person she meets withal, taking him fence, than to have admitted excuses for it.
for the robber, so doth a fool upon every one that Melancthon thinks this and the three next verses, 10. stands in his way, though he be never so much
11. [2. to be sentences near of kin, all. belonging obliged to them. He spares none in the heat of to the right method in judging, which is compre his passions, but furiously abuseth them, &c. hended in that saying of Christ's: “If thy bro- [e] Unto what is expressed in the paraphrase upon ther sin against thee, tell him of it between thy ver. 17. concerning a brother being born for adself and him:" and interprets this 9th verse thus, versity, (which I have referred, as the best inter(taking aluph for a prince, which we translate preters do, unto a friend), this may be added, as chief friends); “ he that orderly admonishes him the plainest translation of the Hebrew words. A that erreth, cures him, and makes no public dis true friend (spoken of before) is born (that is, be. · turbance, saves the man, and preserves public con comes) a brother in adversity. He was a friend cord; but this order being neglected, thence arises before, this makes him a brother, and so he is to out of brawlings, discords of princes, wars and be esteemed. devastations."
[f] There is a phrase in the 19th verse, “ exalteth [c] Now an evil man only seeks scoldings or conten his gate,” which is variously taken by interpre. tions, (as it follows, ver. 11.), i. e. saith he, he doth ters. I have expounded it literally, not for the not seek truth nor the good of the church, but mouth, but for the gate of an house or other place, troubles without end. Thus Cleon and Alcibiades and have put two-senses together... in the state, scattered seeds of war at Achens; the  Various glosses also have been made upon the Cynics and Academics contradicted every body beginning of ver. 22. ^ A merry heart doth good among the philosophers ; and lately Valla, Corne like a medicine:" where, because the particle like lius Agrippa, Carolostadius, &c. had the like is wanting in the Hebrew, other constructions have scolding natures. Those seek not truth, but con been made of the words; some, for instance, hatradict things rightly spoken, or wantonly move un ving taken them thus ; " a merry heart makes a necessary disputes, and will not yield when they are medicine work better, or do more good.” . But he admonished, but with greater rage defend their er that can consult Bochartus, in his second book of rors. Of such Solomon here saith in the next Sacred Animals, chap. 16. part 2.), may find so verse, " It is better to meet a bear robbed of her many examples of the effect of that which they whelps, than a fool in his folly." An example of call 779 ps capb. similitudinis, that he will not which we meet withal, when we meet with a be think it unreasonable to supply it (as our translawitched papist, who defends the most manifest er. tors have done) in this place of the proverbs. rors. Thus he.
In the 34th verse I have put two senses, in But that which the Vulgar translates semper. jurgia · which the words may be taken into one. And
quærit malus, and we translate, “ an evil man seeks "that none may wonder at the repetition of the only rebellion," the most and the best interpreters [h] same thing in the 25th verse, which was take the other way, as the words lie more natural said just before in the 21st, I shall here obly in the Hebrew, “a man very rebellious seeks serve, that there is no doubt but Solomon, hanothing but mischief ;" which sense I have ex ving frequent occasions to speak of the same
pressed in the paraphrase, together with the other. matter, varied the words sometimes, bụt hop the [aj The truth of the next verse. (ver. 12.) is admi. sense; and so the collectors of his sayings put
rably opened by Bochartus, (1. iii. de Animal. Sa down both. And he might speak the oftener of cris, cap. 9. part 1.); who observes four things this matter, having an example before his eyes
of concerning the bear, out of good authors. The the great weakness of his own son, who, it is not first every one knows, that a bear is an exceeding unlikely, was a perpetual grief to him. There is
also something observeable in this verse, which was trious, is their being descended from worthy parents,
they are above him, so are not regarded out of his There are several ways also of expounding the latter mouth, though he should speak excellent things'; but end of the next verse, ver. 26. I have expressed it is much less seemly for a prince to lie and deceive, the sense of our translation, and had respect, in which as it is below him, who represents the God of the next verse to that, (ver. 27.), to both readings truth, so it makes him despicable, and destroys his of the word which we render excellent.
authority, when his subjects cannot rely upon his
word. Ver. I. BETTER is a dry morsel, and quietness ebere, Ver. 8. A gift' is as a precious stone in the eyes of
with, than a house full of sacrifices with bim tbat bath it ; wbitbersoever it turnetb, it prosper. strife.] There is more satisfaction in a bit of dry etb.) A gift is so tempting, that it can no more be bread (without butter or oil, &c.) in the open field, refused than a lovely jewel by him to whom it is preand love and concord therewith, than in a house full sented; and such is its power, it commonly prevails of the best cheer in the world, attended with brawl. over all men, dispatches all business, carries all causes; ing, contention, and strife.
and in a word, effects whatsoever a man desires. Ver. 2. A wise servant shall bave rule over a son Ver. 9. He that coveretb a transgression, seeketh that causeth sbame, and sball bave part of the inherit- love ; but be that repeateth a matter, separateth very ance among the brethren.] Probity and prudence are friends.] He that passes by and buries in oblivion a so much better than mere riches and noble birth, that transgression that hath been committed against him, a wise and faithful servant sometimes arrives at the takes the best course to preserve friendship, and to honour of being appointed the governor of a son, make himself universally beloved ; but he who rakes whose folly and wickedness make him a discredit to up that fault again, and objects it afresh wlien it was his family'; nay, he is left not only executor of the forgotten, breaks the strictest bands of amity, and father's will, or trustee for the children, but his me. makes an irreconcileable separation. See Arg. [b] rits perhaps are rewarded with a portion of the Ver. 10. A reproof entereth more into a wise man, estate which is to be distributed among them. See than an hundred stripes into a fool.] One reproof peArg. [a]
netrates deeper into the mind of an ingenious man, Ver. 3. The fining-pot is for silver, and the furnace and works a greater alteration there, than an hundred for gold, but the LORD trieth the hearts.] The art of stripes will do for the amendment of an obstinate man hath found out means to prove whether gold and fool; silver be pure or no; but none can search into the se Ver. 11. An evil man seeketh only rebellion ; there. cret thoughts, designs, and inclinations of men's souls, fore a cruel messenger shall be sent against him.] Who but the Lord; who (as those metals are tried by fire) seeking nothing but to have his own will, and being many times proves and discovers what they are bý so refractory that he hath shaken off all reverence to sharp afflictions and troubles.
God, or to his governors, is wholly bent upon mis. Ver. 4. A wicked doer givech beed to false lips; and chief, and cannot be reclaimed; it remains therefore a liar giveth ear to a naughty tongue.] A man that : only, that a severe execution be done upon him, to designs evil unto others, hearkens greedily to him cut him off in his folly, without mercy. See Arg.
that will tell false and mischievous stories, and there Ver. 12. Let a bear robbed of ber zwbelps meet a
than a furious fool in the pursuit of his unruly pas-
upon his posterity to all generations. Ver. 6. Children's children are the crown of old men ; Ver. 14. The beginning of strife is as when one lettet? and the glory of children are their fathers.] The ho out water ; therefore leave off contention before it be nour and comfort of parents lies in a numerous pro- meddled with.] When men begin a q.arrel or a difgeny, which doth not degenerate from their ances- ference, they know not where it will end; for the tors' virtue ; and that which makes children illus- very first breach is like cutting the banks of a river,