1:16 I thought to myself, 1
“I have become much wiser 2 than any of my predecessors who ruled 3 over Jerusalem; 4
I 5 have acquired much wisdom and knowledge.” 6
2:9 So 7 I was far wealthier 8 than all my predecessors in Jerusalem,
yet I maintained my objectivity: 9
1 tn Heb “I spoke, I, with my heart.”
2 tn Heb “I, look, I have made great and increased wisdom.” The expression הִגְדַּלְתִּי וְהוֹסַפְתִּי (higdalti vÿhosafti) is a verbal hendiadys; it means that Qoheleth had become the wisest man in the history of Jerusalem.
3 tn The phrase “who ruled” does not appear in the Hebrew text, but is supplied in the translation for clarity.
4 map For location see Map5-B1; Map6-F3; Map7-E2; Map8-F2; Map10-B3; JP1-F4; JP2-F4; JP3-F4; JP4-F4.
5 tn Heb “my heart” (לִבִּי, libbi). The term “heart” is a metonymy of part for the whole (“my heart” = myself).
6 tn Heb “My heart has seen much wisdom and knowledge.”
7 tn The vav prefixed to וְגָדַלְתִּי (vÿgadalti, vav + Qal perfect first common singular from גָּדַל, gadal, “to be great; to increase”) functions in a final summarizing sense, that is, it introduces the concluding summary of 2:4-9.
8 tn Heb “I became great and I surpassed” (וְהוֹסַפְתִּי וְגָדַלְתִּי, vÿgadalti vÿhosafti). This is a verbal hendiadys in which the second verb functions adverbially, modifying the first: “I became far greater.” Most translations miss the hendiadys and render the line in a woodenly literal sense (KJV, ASV, RSV, NEB, NRSV, NAB, NASB, MLB, Moffatt), while only a few recognize the presence of hendiadys here: “I became greater by far” (NIV) and “I gained more” (NJPS).
9 tn Heb “yet my wisdom stood for me,” meaning he retained his wise perspective despite his great wealth.