Then I returned and saw all the oppressions that are done under the sun: and, behold, the tears of such as were oppressed, and they had no comforter; and on the side of their oppressors there was power; but they had no comforter.
Wherefore I praised the dead that have been long dead more than the living that are yet alive;
yea, better than them both [did I esteem] him that hath not yet been, who hath not seen the evil work that is done under the sun.
Then I saw all labor and every skilful work, that for this a man is envied of his neighbor. This also is vanity and a striving after wind.
The fool foldeth his hands together, and eateth his own flesh.
Better is a handful, with quietness, than two handfuls with labor and striving after wind.
Then I returned and saw vanity under the sun.
There is one that is alone, and he hath not a second; yea, he hath neither son nor brother; yet is there no end of all his labor, neither are his eyes satisfied with riches. For whom then, [saith he], do I labor, and deprive my soul of good? This also is vanity, yea, it is a sore travail.
Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor.