26:1 Like snow in summer and rain when the grain is being cut, so honour is not natural for the foolish.
26:2 As the sparrow in her wandering and the swallow in her flight, so the curse does not come without a cause.
26:3 A whip for the horse, a mouth-bit for the ass, and a rod for the back of the foolish.
26:4 Do not give to the foolish man a foolish answer, or you will be like him.
26:5 Give a foolish man a foolish answer, or he will seem wise to himself.
26:6 He who sends news by the hand of a foolish man is cutting off his feet and drinking in damage.
26:7 The legs of one who has no power of walking are hanging loose; so is a wise saying in the mouth of the foolish.
26:8 Giving honour to a foolish man is like attempting to keep a stone fixed in a cord.
26:9 Like a thorn which goes up into the hand of a man overcome by drink, so is a wise saying in the mouth of a foolish man.
26:10 Like an archer wounding all who go by, is a foolish man overcome by drink.
26:11 Like a dog going back to the food which he has not been able to keep down, is the foolish man doing his foolish acts over again.
26:12 Have you seen a man who seems to himself to be wise? There is more hope for the foolish than for him.
26:13 The hater of work says, There is a lion in the way; a lion is in the streets.
26:14 A door is turned on its pillar, and the hater of work on his bed.
26:15 The hater of work puts his hand deep into the basin: lifting it again to his mouth is a weariness to him.
26:16 The hater of work seems to himself wiser than seven men who are able to give an answer with good sense.
26:17 He who gets mixed up in a fight which is not his business, is like one who takes a dog by the ears while it is going by.
26:18 As one who is off his head sends about flaming sticks and arrows of death,
26:19 So is the man who gets the better of his neighbour by deceit, and says, Am I not doing so in sport?
26:20 Without wood, the fire goes out; and where there is no secret talk, argument is ended.
26:21 Like breath on coals and wood on fire, so a man given to argument gets a fight started.
26:22 The words of one who says evil of his neighbour secretly are like sweet food, they go down into the inner parts of the stomach.
26:23 Smooth lips and an evil heart are like a vessel of earth plated with silver waste.
26:24 With his lips the hater makes things seem what they are not, but deceit is stored up inside him;
26:25 When he says fair words, have no belief in him; for in his heart are seven evils:
26:26 Though his hate is covered with deceit, his sin will be seen openly before the meeting of the people.
26:27 He who makes a hole in the earth will himself go falling into it: and on him by whom a stone is rolled the stone will come back again.
26:28 A false tongue has hate for those who have clean hearts, and a smooth mouth is a cause of falling.