All Is Vanity
The phrase “all is vanity” is an optical illusion that depicts a young woman looking in a mirror, surrounded by a sea of makeup and accessories. The painting warns of the fleeting nature of youthful beauty and the ephemeral nature of human life. It is also a reminder of the fact that death will come and we will all be destined to die. The title of the poem, All is Vanity, is an allusion to the vice of vanity.
Vanity is a term from the Latin translation of the Book of Ecclesiastes. Originally, vanitas meant a person’s preoccupation with appearance. The word ‘vanity’ is a shorthand way to express a person’s complete preoccupation with appearance. Today, the term is most commonly used to refer to a bathroom vanity. Nevertheless, it’s not only the vanity’s function that has changed over time.
The word ‘vanity’ is used to describe a room’s interior. In the mid-20th century, a person’s room was a place to change one’s appearance and groom themselves. The word originally meant ‘vapor’. It is still commonly used today in the Bible, which is a good idea, since it implies the presence of a divine entity. The author also calls things vanity and emphasizes the importance of belief and accepting the things that cannot be changed.