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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Proverbs 12:16

 

 

A fool's anger is known at once, But a prudent man conceals dishonor.

Adam Clarke Commentary

A fool's wrath is presently known - We have a proverb very like this, and it will serve for illustration: -

A fool's bolt is soon shot.

A weak-minded man has no self-government; he is easily angered, and generally speaks whatever comes first to his mind.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/proverbs-12.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

The “fool” cannot restrain his wrath; it rushes on “presently” (as in the margin, on the same day, however, uselessly. The prudent man knows that to utter his indignation at reproach and shame will but lead to a fresh attack, and takes refuge in reticence.


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Bibliography
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/proverbs-12.html. 1870.

The Biblical Illustrator

Proverbs 12:16

A fool’s wrath is presently known: but a prudent man covereth shame.

Wrath as shame

The wise man here uses a very observable word, to express wrath. He calls it shame, for it is a shame for a man to suffer his reason to, be tyrannised over by an unruly passion, which spreads deformity over his countenance, and hurries him on to expressions and actions more like those of one confined in bedlam than one who is supposed to have the use of his reason. A fool disgraces himself by giving way to the impetuous sallies of passion. He discovers his temporary madness by his pale countenance, his quivering lips, and his flashing eyes. “But a prudent man covereth shame.” When he finds his passions beginning to ferment, he does not give them full scope, but considers whether he does well to be angry, and how far it is lawful and safe for him to give way to this turbulent passion. He does not cover his wrath, that it may have time to work, and draw the powers of reason into its service, that it may break forth with more effect on another occasion--but covers it, that he may have time to suppress and destroy it, by considering its folly and wickedness, by meditating on the example and grace of Christ, and by fervent supplications for the support and assistance of the spirit of meekness. By such means as these the prudent man preserves his own honour, and covers the shame of his neighbour, who is likely to be gained by gentleness and meekness. (G. Lawson.)


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Bibliography
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Proverbs 12:16". The Biblical Illustrator. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/proverbs-12.html. 1905-1909. New York.

Coffman's Commentaries on the Bible

"A fools vexation is presently known; But a prudent man concealeth shame."

"A fool is quick to show annoyance, but a shrewd man retains his retort."[23] "Let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath" (James 1:19).


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James Burton Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.

Bibliography
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "Coffman Commentaries on the Old and New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/proverbs-12.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

A fool's wrath is presently known,.... Having no command of himself, he cannot repress it, nor keep it in; no sooner is he provoked but he shows it in his countenance, and by his words and actions; it is to be seen in the fire of his eyes, in the frowns of his face, in the gnashing of his teeth, and in the stamping of his feet, as well as in the bitter expressions of his mouth: or "a fool's wrath in that day is known"F2ביום "eo die quo irritatur", Tigurine version; "eodem die", Junius & Tremellius; so Banyus, Merceras, Gejerus. ; in the same day in which the provocation is given; yea, in the same hour, and in the same moment; he cannot defer showing it for the least space of time; or it is openly known, it is to be seen and observed by everyone: or thus, "a fool is presently known by his wrath"F3"Cognoscitur ex ira sua", Munster. ; see Ecclesiastes 7:9;

but a prudent man covereth shame; conceals his anger and resentment at any injury done him by words or actions, which if suffered to break out would bring shame and disgrace to him; or he covers the injury itself, the disgraceful words that are spoken of him, and the shameful actions done unto him; he puts up with the contempt that is cast upon him, and bears it patiently; takes no notice of the offence given him, and much less seeks revenge; in which he acts a prudent part, for by so doing he creates less trouble to himself, and gains more credit and reputation from others.


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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
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Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/proverbs-12.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

A fool's wrath is presently known: but h a prudent [man] covereth shame.

(h) Who bridles his affections.

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Bibliography
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/proverbs-12.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

shame — He is slow to denounce his insulters (James 1:19).


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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/proverbs-12.html. 1871-8.

Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament

The relations of the subject and the predicate are the same as in the preceding verse.

The fool makes known his vexation on the same day [at once],

On the contrary, the prudent man hideth the offence.

Very frequently in these proverbs the first line is only defined by the adducing of the second, or the second holds itself in the light of the first. A post-bibl. proverb says that a man is known by three things: by his כוס (his behaviour in drinking), his כיס (his conduct in money transactions), and his כעס (his conduct under deep inward excitement). So here: he is a fool who, if some injury is done to him, immediately shows his vexation in a passionate manner; while, on the contrary the prudent man maintains silence as to the dishonour that is done to him, and represses his displeasure, so as not to increase his vexation to his own injury. Passionless retaliation may in certain cases be a duty of self-preservation, and may appear to be necessary for the protection of truth, but passionate self-defence is always of evil, whether the injury which is inflicted be justifiable or unjustifiable. Regarding ערוּם , callidus , vid ., p. 56; Schultens' comparison of the Greek γεγυμνασμένος is only a conceit in want of better knowledge. Regarding כּסה (only here and at Proverbs 12:23) with מכסּה , as שׁחר (only Proverbs 11:27) with משׁחר , vid ., Ewald, §170a. בּיּום signifies on the self-same day = without delay, immediately, and is well translated by the lxx αὐθήμερον . With another object, 16b is repeated in 23a.


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Bibliography
Keil, Carl Friedrich & Delitzsch, Franz. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/kdo/proverbs-12.html. 1854-1889.

Matthew Henry's Complete Commentary on the Bible

Note, 1. Passion is folly: A fool is known by his anger (so some read it); not but that a wise man may be angry when there is just cause for it, but then he has his anger under check and direction, is lord of his anger, whereas a fool's anger lords it over him. He that, when he is provoked, breaks out into indecent expressions, in words or behaviour, whose passion alters his countenance, makes him outrageous, and leads him to forget himself, Nabal certainly is his name and folly is with him. A fool's indignation is known in the day; he proclaims it openly, whatever company he is in. Or it is known in the day he is provoked; he cannot defer showing his resentments. Those that are soon angry, that are quickly put into a flame by the least spark, have not that rule which they ought to have over their own spirits. 2. Meekness is wisdom: A prudent man covers shame. (1.) He covers the passion that is in his own breast; when his spirit is stirred, and his heart hot within him, he keeps his mouth as with a bridle, and suppresses his resentments, by smothering and stifling them. Anger is shame, and, though a wise man be not perfectly free from it, yet he is ashamed of it, rebukes it, and suffers not the evil spirit to speak. (2.) He covers the provocation that is given him, the indignity that is done him, winks at it, covers it as much as may be from himself, that he may not carry his resentments of it too far. It is a kindness to ourselves, and contributes to the repose of our own minds, to extenuate and excuse the injuries and affronts that we receive, instead of aggravating them and making the worst of them, as we are apt to do.


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Bibliography
Henry, Matthew. "Complete Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "Matthew Henry Complete Commentary on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mhm/proverbs-12.html. 1706.

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible

A foolish man is soon angry, and is hasty in expressing it; he is ever in trouble and running into mischief. It is kindness to ourselves to make light of injuries and affronts, instead of making the worst of them.


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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliography
Henry, Matthew. "Concise Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "Matthew Henry Concise Commentary

on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mhn/proverbs-12.html. 1706.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

A fool's wrath is presently known: but a prudent man covereth shame.

Covereth — The shame, or injury done to him, which he conceals and bears with patience.


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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliography
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/proverbs-12.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Proverbs 12:16 A fool’s wrath is presently known: but a prudent [man] covereth shame.

Ver. 16. A fool’s wrath is presently known.] He hath no power over his passions. Hence פתי, a fool, and פתאם, suddenly, rashly, are from the same root. Like tow, he is soon kindled; like a pot, he soon boils; and like a candle whose tallow is mixed with brine, as soon as lighted he spits up and down the room. A fool uttereth all his mind. [Proverbs 29:11] The Septuagint render it, All his anger - θυμον . For, as the Hebrews well note in a proverb they have, A man’s mind is soon discovered, bekis, bekos, becoynos; - in loculis, in poculis, in ira; - in his purse, in his drink, in his anger. See my "Common Place of Anger."

But a wise man covereth shame.] By concealing his wrath, or rather by suppressing it when it would break forth to his disgrace, or the just grief of another. Ut fragilis glacies, occidit ira mora. (a) This was Saul’s wisdom; [1 Samuel 10:27] and Jonathan’s, when, incensed by his father’s frowardness, he went shooting; [1 Samuel 20:35] and Ahasuerus, when in a rage against Haman, he walked into the garden. The philosopher wished Augustus, when angry, to say over the Greek alphabet; Ambrose desired an angel’s authority; [Galatians 1:8] Theodosius to repeat the Lord’s Prayer before he decreed anything.


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/proverbs-12.html. 1865-1868.

The Popular Commentary by Paul E. Kretzmann

v. 16. A fool's wrath is presently known, his indignation breaks out suddenly, often without a careful examination of the difficulty which caused it; but a prudent man covereth shame, he exercises prudent self-control, he keeps his temper well in hand always.


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Bibliography
Kretzmann, Paul E. Ph. D., D. D. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "Kretzmann's Popular Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/kpc/proverbs-12.html. 1921-23.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Proverbs 12:16. A fool's wrath is presently known, &c.— Solomon does not approve those who disguise and conceal their resentment till they find a proper opportunity to avenge themselves; but he condemns those who have not the power to repress the first motions of their passions. They who moderate the first heat of their wrath are more likely to extinguish it wholly in future. See Calmet.


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Bibliography
Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/proverbs-12.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Is presently known, by his rash words and indecent actions, whereby he exposeth himself to shame.

Covereth shame; either,

1. The shame, or reproach, or injury done to him by others, which he concealeth and beareth with patience, and passeth by, as his duty and interest obligeth him to do. Or,

2. His own shame, to which the folly of rash anger would have betrayed him.


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Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/proverbs-12.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

16. A fool’s wrath (vexation) is presently known — Hebrew, the same day. He does not control his temper, but allows others to witness his provocation.

But a prudent man covereth shame — He does not appear to recognise the contempt with which he is treated, takes no notice of a slight or insult, and suppresses the desire to retaliate. Saul, though not a very wise man, once acted on this maxim. 1 Samuel 10:27.


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Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/proverbs-12.html. 1874-1909.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

A prudent person "ignores an insult" (RSV). The insult is dishonor to himself or herself. A fool"s reaction is "like an injured animal and so his opponent knows that he has been wounded." [Note: McKane, p442.] A fool brings dishonor on himself and becomes vulnerable by making a big deal out of some insult that he received.


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Bibliography
Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/dcc/proverbs-12.html. 2012.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Proverbs 12:16. A fool’s wrath is presently known — By his rash words and indecent actions, whereby he exposes himself to shame; but a prudent man covereth shame — Either, 1st, The shame, reproach, or injury, done to him by others, which he conceals, and bears with patience: or, 2d, His own shame, to which the folly of rash anger would have exposed him.


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Bibliography
Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". Joseph Benson's Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/proverbs-12.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Wise. It is more difficult to repress, than to avoid anger. (St. Ambrose) --- To dissemble, so as to seek an opportunity of revenge, is not commended.


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Bibliography
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/proverbs-12.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

is = letteth itself be.

presently = immediately, at once, the same day. Illustrations: Jehoram (2 Kings 6:31); Jezebel (1 Kings 19:1, 1 Kings 19:2); Nebuchadnezzar (Daniel 3:19); synagogue at Nazareth (Luke 4:28). covereth = concealeth.

shame = public ignominy. Figure of speech Metonymy (of Effect), App-6, put for the affront which causes it. Illustrations: Gideon (Judges 8:2, Judges 8:3. Compare Proverbs 8:1); Hezekiah (Isaiah 36:21. Compare Proverbs 26:4); David (1 Samuel 17:29, 1 Samuel 17:30. Compare Proverbs 12:28); Saul (1 Samuel 10:27. Compare Proverbs 20:30-33).


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Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/proverbs-12.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

A fool's wrath is presently known: but a prudent man covereth shame.

A fool's wrath is presently (Hebrew, in that very day; Hosea 4:5) known: but a prudent man covereth shame - namely, the shame or insult put upon him by others. "Covereth," with the mantle of patience and charity, instead of exasperating himself, and losing self-control like "a fool," by dwelling on the indignity of the word or deed, and the worthlessness of the injurer. He did not publish the act, to the discredit of the other, but consults for the reputation of the other lest he should add sin to the injury suffered.


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Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/proverbs-12.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(16) A fool’s wrath is presently known.—He cannot contain himself if he thinks himself slighted or injured; the “prudent man,” on the other hand, “covereth shame,” not noticing an insult at the time, but waiting for a convenient opportunity of telling the offender of his fault and bringing him to a better mind (Matthew 18:15).


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Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/proverbs-12.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

A fool's wrath is presently known: but a prudent man covereth shame.
fool's
25:28; 29:11; 1 Samuel 20:30-34; 1 Kings 19:1,2
presently
Heb. in that day. but.
10:12; 16:22; 17:9; 29:11; James 1:19

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Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Proverbs 12:16". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/proverbs-12.html.

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