1 The words of king Lemuel, the prophecy which his mother taught him.
2 What, my son? And what, the son of my womb? And what, the son of my vows?
3 Do not give your strength to women, nor your ways to that which destroys kings.
4 [It is] not for kings, O Lemuel, not for kings to drink wine; nor for princes [to lust] for strong drink;
5 lest they drink, and forget the law, and pervert the judgment of any of the afflicted.
6 Give strong drink to him who is ready to perish, and wine to those who are of heavy hearts.
7 Let him drink, and forget his poverty, and remember his misery no more.
8 Open your mouth for the dumb, for the cause of all the sons [of those] passing away.
9 Open your mouth, judge righteously, and plead the cause of the poor and needy.
10 Who can find a woman of virtue? For her value [is] far above rubies.
11 The heart of her husband trusts safely in her, so that he shall have no need of plunder.
12 She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.
13 She seeks wool and flax, and works willingly [with] her hands.
14 She is like the merchants' ships; she brings her food from afar.
15 She also rises while [it is] still night, and gives food to her household, and a share to her young women.
16 She considers a field, and buys it; with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
17 She binds her loins with strength, and makes her arms strong.
18 She sees that her merchandise [is] good; her lamp does not go out by night.
19 She lays her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff.
20 She stretches out her hand to the poor; yea, she reaches forth her hands to the needy.
21 She is not afraid of the snow for her household; for all her household [are] clothed [with] scarlet.
22 She makes herself coverings; her clothing [is] silk and purple.
23 Her husband is known in the gates, when he sits among the elders of the land.
24 She makes fine linen and sells [it], and delivers girdles to the merchants.
25 Strength and honor [are] her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.
26 She opens her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue [is] the law of kindness.
27 She looks well to the ways of her household, and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her sons rise up and call her blessed; her husband [also], and he praises her.
29 Many daughters have done well, but you excel them all.
30 Favor [is] deceitful, and beauty [is] vain, [but] a woman who fears the LORD, she shall be praised.
31 Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.