Solomon did his writing in a little cubicle he would have called his study, had there been such a thing in his time. It was little more than a cell, furnished with a writing table, a chair, and some rudimentary writing materials. His working area was lit by several candles, since he did most of his reading and writing either late at night or early in the morning.
One wall had a window, of sorts, facing west. Mostly it was just a hole in the wall, with shutters that he could close if the breeze was too cold, or the sun too bright. It was big enough that he could see out without needing to stand up.
The door in the side wall opened into his sleeping quarters, and was the only way to enter the room. The room was heated through the door, by the fireplace in the next room.
The other two walls were the most important. They contained his library of scrolls, stored carefully on roughhewn shelves. Some of the scrolls were obviously quite old and fragile. Others were newer, and several were written by Solomon himself. Perhaps the most important scrolls in the collection were the copy of the Pentateuch Solomon had copied painstakingly in his own handwriting during the first years of his reign.
That library would be worth a king’s ransom today if we could recover it somehow. It contained writings of wise men, and scholars, as well as scientists and political gurus of the time. Some were old and some were new — the king’s men had collected them from far and wide. They contained the wisdom of the world at that time
Solomon had just taken a scroll from his library and was looking through it. According to the title at the beginning of the scroll, it was a collection of wise sayings that he had been working on for years. Some of the sayings he had gleaned from his collection of writings. Others were original with him. It contained, in a series of nutshells, an overview of the wisdom of the wisest man who ever lived.
Carefully, Solomon rerolled the scroll and replaced it on the shelf. “I wonder if these writings will survive,” he mused to himself. “Maybe people will read them a thousand years from now and wonder what kind of person wrote them.”
“If only they could also know how hard it is for this ‘wise man’ to live up to his own wisdom…”