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Hebrew Wikisource has the following for Sirach/Ecclesiasticus/Ben-Sira Chapter 42 Verse 31:

לָשֵׂאת לֶקַח מֵחֲכָמִים וְלִשְׁמוֹעַ אֱמֶת מִפִּי אוֹמְרָהּ
To take good messages from wise ones and to hear the truth from the mouth of the one who says it. (my rough translation)

However, looking around at English translations online (eg. CEB NSRV GNT RSVCE) Sirach 42 seems to end at verse 25. Sirach 43 though starts the same in all. Where did verse 31 come from? Why does the Hebrew text on Wikisource have a whole section that isn't in the English?

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  • My impression is that all of those English translations are from the Greek rather than the Hebrew, yes? The Greek appears to end at v. 25. (This doesn’t answer the question; just an observation.)
    – Susan
    May 11, 2015 at 6:10
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    @Susan I can't read Greek so don't know when it ends nor what texts those English translations used. I also don't know if we have original Hebrew (eg. from Dead Sea Scrolls) for this section, or if Wikisource is even using those original texts and not later back-translations into Hebrew from Greek. Certainly the answer could lie in those issues.
    – Double AA
    May 11, 2015 at 6:17
  • Most of the little I know about the book comes from the introduction to the NETS translation. That’s from Greek, and I’m pretty sure all of the Christian translations are from Greek, which (the Greek) is supposedly an early translation from Hebrew (by the author’s grandson?). I know fragments of the Hebrew have been found among the DSS and elsewhere, but not sure exactly where the Hebrew you’re looking at comes from.
    – Susan
    May 11, 2015 at 7:19
  • I’m trying to make sure we’re using the same numbering, since there’s nothing beyond v. 25 mentioned in my LXX apparatus, nor in this Hebrew parallel version that has reconstructed it based on some extant Hebrew manuscripts (key). Can you give a rough translation of v. 25 in the Hebrew you’re looking at and/or tell me if it matches the that picture? My Hebrew’s not good enough to manage that site.
    – Susan
    May 11, 2015 at 7:47
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    Since there doesn’t seem to be a Greek correlate for the passage in the question, I’m guessing (!) that the answer lies somewhere in the Hebrew manuscripts which are available on this very cool website. This portion seems to be among the Genizah manuscripts (A-F there, although I think the relevant portion is ms B), somewhere nearby B XI verso.
    – Susan
    May 12, 2015 at 8:44

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As one of the comments stated, almost every English translation of Sirach (Ecclesiasticus) is based on a Greek version of the text. English translations of the Latin Vulgate (e.g. Douay-Rheims), however, are based on a Hebrew version. In his prologue to the "Books of Solomon", Jerome states that he consulted a Hebrew version of the book for his Latin translation. The first five verses of Chapter 24 in the Hebrew version read, for example:

Wisdom shall praise her own self, and shall be honoured in God, and shall glory in the midst of her people, And shall open her mouth in the churches of the most High, and shall glorify herself in the sight of his power, And in the midst of her own people she shall be exalted, and shall be admired in the holy assembly. And in the multitude of the elect she shall have praise, and among the blessed she shall be blessed, saying: I came out of the mouth of the most High, the firstborn before all creatures (Douay-Rheims)

The same verses in the Greek version read:

Wisdom shall praise herself, and shall glory in the midst of her people. In the congregation of the most High shall she open her mouth, and triumph before his power. I came out of the mouth of the most High, and covered the earth as a cloud. I dwelt in high places, and my throne is in a cloudy pillar. I alone compassed the circuit of heaven, and walked in the bottom of the deep (KJV)

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  • Hi user33515. I'm not sure how this answers my question. Perhaps it would be better left as a comment
    – Double AA
    Nov 12, 2017 at 1:11

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