1 Therfor Y seide in myn hertez, Y schal go, and Y schal flowe in delicis, and Y schal vse goodis; and Y siy also that this was vanyte.
2 And leiyyng Y arrettide errour, and Y seide to ioye, What art thou disseyued in veyn?
3 I thouyte in myn herte to withdrawe my fleisch fro wyn, that Y schulde lede ouer my soule to wisdom, and that Y schulde eschewe foli, til Y schulde se, what were profitable to the sones of men; in which dede the noumbre of daies of her lijf vndur the sunne is nedeful.
4 Y magnefiede my werkis, Y bildide housis to me, and Y plauntide vynes; Y made yerdis and orcherdis,
5 and Y settide tho with the trees of al kynde;
6 and Y made cisternes of watris, for to watre the wode of trees growynge.
7 I hadde in possessioun seruauntis and handmaidis; and Y hadde myche meynee, and droues of grete beestis, and grete flockis of scheep, ouer alle men that weren bifore me in Jerusalem.
8 Y gaderide togidere to me siluer and gold, and the castels of kingis and of prouyncis; Y made to me syngeris and syngeressis, and delicis of the sones of men, and cuppis and vessels in seruyce, to helde out wynes;
9 and Y passide in richessis alle men, that weren bifor me in Jerusalem. Also wisdom dwellide stabli with me,
10 and alle thingis whiche myn iyen desiriden, Y denyede not to hem; nether Y refreynede myn herte, that ne it vside al lust, and delitide it silf in these thingis whiche I hadde maad redi; and Y demyde this my part, if Y vside my trauel.
11 And whanne Y hadde turned me to alle werkis whiche myn hondys hadden maad, and to the trauels in whiche Y hadde swet in veyn, Y siy in alle thingis vanyte and turment of the soule, and that no thing vndir sunne dwellith stabli.
12 I passide to biholde wisdom, errours, and foli; Y seide, What is a man, that he may sue the king, his maker?
13 And Y siy, that wisdom yede so mych bifor foli, as miche as liyt is dyuerse fro derknessis.
14 The iyen of a wijs man ben in his heed, a fool goith in derknessis; and Y lernede, that o perisching was of euer either.
15 And Y seide in myn herte, If o deth schal be bothe of the fool and of me, what profitith it to me, that Y yaf more bisynesse to wisdom? And Y spak with my soule, and perseyuede, that this also was vanyte.
16 For mynde of a wijs man schal not be, in lijk maner as nether of a fool with outen ende, and tymes to comynge schulen hile alle thingis togidere with foryetyng; a lerned man dieth in lijk maner and an vnlerned man.
17 And therfor it anoiede me of my lijf, seynge that alle thingis vndur sunne ben yuele, and that alle thingis ben vanyte and turment of the spirit.
18 Eft Y curside al my bisynesse, bi which Y trauelide moost studiousli vndur sunne, and Y schal haue an eir after me,
19 whom Y knowe not, whether he schal be wijs ether a fool; and he schal be lord in my trauels, for whiche Y swatte greetli, and was bisi; and is ony thing so veyn?
20 Wherfor Y ceesside, and myn herte forsook for to trauele ferthere vnder sunne.
21 For whi whanne another man trauelith in wisdom, and techyng, and bisynesse, he leeueth thingis getun to an idel man; and therfor this is vanyte, and greet yuel.
22 For whi what schal it profite to a man of al his trauel, and turment of spirit, bi which he was turmentid vndur sunne?
23 Alle hise daies ben ful of sorewis and meschefs, and bi nyyt he restith not in soule; and whether this is not vanyte?
24 Whether it is not betere to ete and drynke, and to schewe to hise soule goodis of hise trauels? and this thing is of the hond of God.
25 Who schal deuoure so, and schal flowe in delicis, as Y dide?
26 God yaf wisdom, and kunnyng, and gladnesse to a good man in his siyt; but he yaf turment, and superflu bisynesse to a synnere, that he encreesse, and gadere togidere, and yyue to hym that plesith God; but also this is vanyte, and veyn bisynesse of soule.