Sirach 25:16-24

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Intertestamental texts blaming Eve, or women, for sin and death

Sirach 25:16-24


16 I would sooner live with a lion or a serpent

than share a house with a malicious wife. . . .

19 There is nothing so bad as a bad wife; may the fate of the wicked overtake her! . . .

24 Sin began with a woman,

and because of her we all die. . . .

Verse 24 is thought to refer to Eve, making this the first time that Eve is blamed for the "Fall" in Biblical literature. This is questioned by Alice Ogden Bellis writing here:

"It is possible that Sirach 25:24 does not refer to Eve, but to the evil wife who is the subject of the passage."


Sirach 42:9-14


9 A daughter is a secret anxiety to her father,

and worry about her keeps him awake at night: . . .

12 . . . Do not let her display her beauty to any man,

or sit gossiping in the women’s quarters;

13 for out of clothes comes the moth,

and out of woman comes woman’s wickedness.

14 Better a man’s wickedness than a woman’s goodness;

it is woman who brings shame and disgrace.

See also 2 Esdras 7:116-126, which blames Adam for the Fall.