Internet Verse Search Commentaries Word Analysis ITL - draft

Ecclesiastes 10:15


The toil of a stupid fool 1  wears him out, 2  because he does not even know the way to the city. 3 


Ps 107:4,7; Ec 10:3,10; Isa 35:8-10; Isa 44:12-17; Isa 47:12,13; Isa 55:2; Isa 57:1; Jer 50:4,5; Hab 2:6; Mt 11:28-30

NET © Notes

tn The plural form of הַכְּסִילִים (hakkÿsilim, from כְּסִיל, kÿsil, “fool”) denotes (1) plural of number: referring to several fools or (2) plural of habitual character or plural of intensity (referring to a single person characterized by a habitual or intense quality of foolishness). The latter is favored because the two verbs in 10:15 are both singular in form: “wearies him” (תְּיַגְּעֶנּוּ, tÿyaggÿennu) and “he does [not] know” (לֹא־יָדַע, lo-yada’); see GKC 440-41 §135.p. The article on הַכְּסִילִים is used in the generic sense.

tn This line may be interpreted in one of three ways: (1) “the labor of fools wearies him because he did not know enough to go to a town,” referring to the labor of the peasants who had not been able to find a place in town where life was easier; (2) “the labor of the fools so wearies everyone of them (singular pronoun taken in a distributive sense) so much that he even does not know how to go to town,” that is, he does not even know how to do the easiest thing in the world; (3) “let the labor of fools so weary him that he may not even know how to go to town,” taking the verb as a jussive, describing the foolish man described in 10:12-14. See D. Barthélemy, ed., Preliminary and Interim Report on the Hebrew Old Testament Text Project, 3:592–93.

tn Heb “he does not know to go to the city.”

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