deuterocanonical biblical work (accepted in the Roman Catholic canon but noncanonical for Jews and Protestants), an outstanding example of the wisdom genre of religious literature that was popular in the early Hellenistic period of Judaism (3rd century BC to 3rd century AD). This book appeared in the Septuagint, the Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible, though it was later rejected as apocryphal by Jews. Like other major wisdom books (Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Job, and Wisdom of Solomon), Ecclesiasticus contains practical and moral rules and exhortations, frequently arranged according to subject matter-e.g., hypocrisy, generosity, filial respect. Wisdom, personified as Sophia, or Lady Wisdom, delivers an extended discourse on her eternal relationship with God (chapter 24) and is identified with the Mosaic Law.
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