Do not be arrogant because of your knowledge, but confer with the ignorant man as with the learned. For knoweledge has no limits, and none has yet achieved perfection in it.
Ptahhotep, sometimes known as Ptahhotpe or Ptah-Hotep, is the name of a 24th century BC vizier and philosopher. He was vizier to Djedkare Isesi.
- Teach him what has been said in the past; then he will set a good example to the children of the magistrates, and judgement and all exactitude shall enter into him. Speak to him, for there is none born wise.
- Do not be arrogant because of your knowledge, but confer with the ignorant man as with the learned. For knowledge has no limits, and none has yet achieved perfection in it. Good speech is more hidden than malachite, yet it is found in the possession of women slaves at the millstones.
- Follow your desire as long as you live and do not perform more than is ordered; do not lessen the time of following desire, for the wasting of time is an abomination to the spirit... When riches are gained, follow desire, for riches will not profit if one is sluggish.
- Beware an act of avarice; it is bad and incurable disease.
- If you are well-to-do and can maintain your household, love your wife in your home according to good custom...Make her happy while you are alive, for she is land profitable to her lord.
- Do not repeat slander; you should not hear it, for it is the result of hot temper.
- One who is serious all day will never have a good time, while one who is frivolous all day will never establish a household.
- To resist him that is set in authority is evil.
- Be cheerful while you are alive.
- Be a craftsman in speech that thou mayest be strong, for the strength of one is the tongue, and speech is mightier than all fighting.