CHAPTER 13
Forsooth all men be vain, that is, void of truth, in which the cunning (or the knowing) of God is not; and of these things that be seen (to be) good, they might not understand him, that is, and they perceiving the works knew not, who was the worker [or (the) craftsman];
but they guessed (to be the) gods (and) governors of the world, either the fire, either the wind, either the air made swift, either the compass of stars, either full much water, either the sun and moon;
and if they delighted in the fairness of those things, and guessed them (to be) gods, know they, how much the Lord of those things is fairer than those; for why the engenderer of fairness made all these things. [in whose fairness delighted, if they guessed (to be) gods, know they, how much more the lordshipper of them is the fairer; the (be)getter forsooth of fairness all these thing ordained.]
Either [Or] if they wondered on the virtue and works of those things, understand they of those [things], that he that made these things, is stronger than those;
for by the greatness [or the muchliness] of fairness and of (the) creature(s) the Creator of these might be seen knowingly, either might be known by his works.
But nevertheless yet in these men is less (com)plaint; for they err, in hap seeking God, and willing (or desiring) to find (him).
For when they live in his works, they seek, and hold for a sooth (or a truth), that those things be good, that be seen.
Again soothly it oweth (or ought) not to be forgiven to these men.
For if they might know so much, that they might guess (at) the world, how found they not lightlier (or easier) the Lord thereof?
10 forsooth they be cursed, and the hope of them is among dead men, that called gods the works of men’s hands, gold, and silver, the finding of craft, and likenesses of beasts, either a stone unprofitable, the work of an eld hand. [Unhappy forsooth they be, and among the dead the hope of them is, that called gods the works of the hands of men, gold, and silver, the finding of craft, and the likenesses of beasts, or unprofit-able stone, the work of the old hand.]
11 Either [Or] if any craftsman, a carpenter, heweth down of the woods a straight tree, and eraseth away perfectly all the rind thereof [or and of this taughtly pare away all the rind], and useth his craft diligently, and maketh a vessel full profitable into conversation of life;
12 soothly he useth the reliefs (or the remnants) of this work to the making ready of (his) meat;
13 and the residue of these things, which he maketh to no work [or that to none use], a crooked tree, and full of knots, he engraveth diligently by his voidness, that is, made of (or by) him by his engraving, and by the cunning (or the knowing) of his craft he figureth it, and likeneth it to the image of a man,
14 either maketh it like to some of beasts, and anointeth (it) with red colour, and maketh the colour thereof ruddy with painture, and anointeth, [or daubing, or painting] each spot which is in it,
15 and maketh to (or for) it a worthy dwelling place, and setteth it in the wall, and he fasteneth it with iron,
16 lest peradventure it fall down; and he purveyeth for it, and knoweth, that it may not help itself; for it is an image, and help is needful thereto.
17 And he maketh a vow, and in-quireth of his chattel, and of his sons, and of weddings; he is not ashamed to speak with him, that is without (a) soul;
18 and soothly for health he beseech-eth a thing unmighty [or feeble], and for life he prayeth (to) a thing without life, [or and for life he prayeth (to) the dead] and he calleth an unprofitable thing into (or for) help. And for (a good) journey he asketh of that thing, that may not go;
19 and of getting and of working, and of (the) befalling of all things he asketh of him, which is unprofitable in all things. [and of purchasing, and of working, and of the chance of all things he asketh of it, that in all things is unprofitable.]