1 The words of the Teacher, [^1] son of David, king in Jerusalem:
2 "Meaningless! Meaningless!" ¶ says the Teacher. ¶ "Utterly meaningless! ¶ Everything is meaningless."
3 What do people gain from all their labors ¶ at which they toil under the sun?
4 Generations come and generations go, but the earth remains forever.
5 The sun rises and the sun sets, and hurries back to where it rises.
6 The wind blows to the south and turns to the north; ¶ round and round it goes, ¶ ever returning on its course.
7 All streams flow into the sea, yet the sea is never full. ¶ To the place the streams come from, ¶ there they return again.
8 All things are wearisome, more than one can say. ¶ The eye never has enough of seeing, ¶ nor the ear its fill of hearing.
9 What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; ¶ there is nothing new under the sun.
10 Is there anything of which one can say, "Look! This is something new"? ¶ It was here already, long ago; ¶ it was here before our time.
11 No one remembers the former generations, and even those yet to come ¶ will not be remembered ¶ by those who follow them.
12 I, the Teacher, was king over Israel in Jerusalem.
13 I applied my mind to study and to explore by wisdom all that is done under the heavens. What a heavy burden God has laid on mankind!
14 I have seen all the things that are done under the sun; all of them are meaningless, a chasing after the wind.
15 What is crooked cannot be straightened; ¶ what is lacking cannot be counted.
16 I said to myself, "Look, I have increased in wisdom more than anyone who has ruled over Jerusalem before me; I have experienced much of wisdom and knowledge."
17 Then I applied myself to the understanding of wisdom, and also of madness and folly, but I learned that this, too, is a chasing after the wind.
18 For with much wisdom comes much sorrow; ¶ the more knowledge, the more grief.