Book of Proverbs in Easton's Bible Dictionary
a collection of moral and philosophical maxims of a wide
of subjects presented in a poetic form. This book
sets forth the
"philosophy of practical life. It is the sign to us
Bible does not despise common sense and discretion.
upon us in the most forcible manner the value of
and prudence and of a good education. The whole
strength of the
Hebrew language and of the sacred authority of the
thrown upon these homely truths. It deals, too, in
discriminating, careful view of the finer shades of
character so often overlooked by theologians, but so
to any true estimate of human life" (Stanley's
As to the origin of this book, "it is probable that
gathered and recast many proverbs which sprang from
experience in preceeding ages and were floating past
him on the
tide of time, and that he also elaborated many new
ones from the
material of his own experience. Towards the close of
indeed, are preserved some of Solomon's own sayings
that seem to
have fallen from his lips in later life and been
other hands' (Arnot's Laws from Heaven, etc.)
This book is usually divided into three parts: (1.)
of ch. 1-9, which contain an exhibition of wisdom as
(2.) Consisting of ch. 10-24.
(3.) Containing proverbs of Solomon "which the men
Hezekiah, the king of Judah, collected" (ch. 25-29).
These are followed by two supplements, (1) "The
words of Agur"
(ch. 30); and (2) "The words of king Lemuel" (ch.
Solomon is said to have written three thousand
those contained in this book may be a selection from
Kings 4:32). In the New Testament there are thirty-
quotations from this book or allusions to it.