††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††DASV: Esther

†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† DASV: Esther 1

1 Now these things happened in the days of Ahasuerus (this Ahasuerus, [also called Xerxes], reigned over 127 provinces from India to Ethiopia).

2 In those days, when King Ahasuerus sat on his throne in the citadel in Susa,

3 in the third year of his reign, he made a feast for all his officials and servants.† The commanders of the army of Persia and Media, the nobles and governors of the provinces were present.

4 He displayed the riches of his glorious empire and the splendor of his majesty for a total of 180 days.

5 When these days were completed, the king made a feast for all the people who were present in the citadel of Susa, both great and small.† It lasted seven days and was held in the courtyard of the garden of the king's palace.

6 There were white and blue linen curtains with cords of fine linen and purple ribbons tied to silver rings to pillars of marble.† The couches were of gold and silver on a mosaic pavement of porphyry, marble, mother-of-pearl, and other costly colored stones.

7 Drinks were served in gold goblets with each one different from the other, and royal wine was in abundance at the king's expense.

8 The drinking was according to the instructions that there should be no restrictions, for the king had ordered all the officers of his house, that they should give to each of the guests whatever they desired.

9 Queen Vashti also hosted a feast for the women in the royal palace that belonged to King Ahasuerus.


10 On the seventh day, when the heart of the king was merry with wine, he commanded Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, Abagtha, Zethar and Carcas, the seven eunuchs who served in the presence of Ahasuerus the king,

11 to bring Vashti the queen before the king wearing the crown royal, to show the peoples and the princes her beauty; for she was very beautiful.

12 But Queen Vashti refused to come at the king's command by the eunuchs.† Then the king became infuriated and his anger burned within him.


13 Then the king consulted with the wise men, who understood the times (for it was the king's custom to consult with those who understood the law and justice,

14 and those next to him were Carshena, Shethar, Admatha, Tarshish, Meres, Marsena, and Memucan, the seven officials of Persia and Media, who regularly saw the king's face and held the highest positions in the kingdom).

15 "What should be done to Queen Vashti according to law, because she has not obeyed the command of King Ahasuerus by the eunuchs?"

16 Then Memucan responded before the king and the princes, "Queen Vashti has not done wrong just to the king, but also to all the officials, and to all the peoples throughout the provinces of the King Ahasuerus.

17 For this action of the queen will become know to all women, encouraging them to treat their husbands with contempt, since they will say, 'King Ahasuerus commanded Vashti the queen to be brought in before him, but she would not come.'

18 This day the noble women of Persia and Media who have heard about the queen's behavior will rebel against all the king's nobles the same way and there will be no end of the contempt and wrath.

19 So if it pleases the king, let a royal decree be issued by him, and let it be written in the laws of the Persians and the Medes so that it cannot be altered, that Vashti be banished from the presence of King Ahasuerus, and let the king give her royal estate to another who is more worthy than she.

20 Then when the king's decree is published throughout his entire kingdom, as vast as it is, all the wives will give to their husbands honor from greatest to the least."


21 The saying pleased the king and the officials, so the king followed the advice of Memucan.

22 He sent letters to all the royal provinces, into every province in its own script and to each people in their own language, that every man should be ruler in his own home, and should speak the language of his own people.

†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† DASV: Esther 2

After these things, when the wrath of King Ahasuerus [or Xerxes] had calmed, he remembered Vashti, and what she had done, and what had been decreed against her.

2 Then the king's personal attendants suggested to him, "Let a search be made for beautiful young virgins for the king.

3 Let the king appoint officers in all the provinces of his kingdom, that they may gather all the beautiful young virgins to the citadel of Susa, to the harem under the supervision of Hegai the king's eunuch who is in charge of the women and provide them with whatever cosmetics they need.

4 Let the young woman who pleases the king be made queen instead of Vashti." This proposal pleased the king, so that is what he did.


5 Now there was a certain Jew in the citadel of Susa whose name was Mordecai, the son of Jair, the son of Shimei, the son of Kish, a Benjaminite,

6 who had been deported from Jerusalem with the exiles who had been carried away with Jeconiah king of Judah, by King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon.

7 He brought up Hadassah, also called Esther, his uncle's daughter for both her father and mother had passed away and Mordecai had adopted her as his own daughter.† The woman had a lovely figure and was beautiful.

8 So when the king's commandment and his decree was announced and when many young women were gathered together to the citadel of Susa under the custody of Hegai, Esther was taken into the king's palace and placed in the custody of Hegai, who was in charge of the women.

9 The young woman pleased him and she won his favor.† He quickly gave her cosmetics and a portion of food and provided her with the seven maidens out of the king's palace.† He promoted her and her maidens to the best place in the royal harem.

10 Esther had not told her people or her family for Mordecai had prohibited her from telling them.

11 Every day Mordecai would walk in front of the court of the harem, to find out how Esther was doing and what was happening to her.

Now before each young woman came to King Ahasuerus, she had twelve months of beauty treatments.† The standard treatments were:† six months with oil of myrrh, and then six months with special perfumes and cosmetics for women.

13 Then when each woman went to the king she was granted whatever she desired to take with her from the harem to the king's palace.

14 In the evening she went there and in the morning she returned into the second harem which was under the supervision of Shaashgaz, the king's eunuch, who was in charge of the concubines.† She would not return to the king unless the king delighted in her and called her by name.

15 Now when the turn came for Esther, the daughter of Abihail, her uncle Mordecai, who had adopted her as his daughter, to go in to the king, she asked for nothing but what Hegai the king's eunuch, who was in charge of the women, recommended. Esther won the favor of all who saw her.

So Esther was taken to King Ahasuerus to his royal palace in the tenth month, which is the month Tebeth, in the seventh year of his reign.

17 The king loved Esther more than any of the other women, and she won his favor and kindness more than any of the other virgins.† So he set the royal crown on her head and made her queen instead of Vashti.

18 Then the king hosted a great feast for all his officials and servants in honor of Esther.† †He announced a holiday to the provinces, and gave gifts at the kingís expense.

19 When the virgins were gathered the second time, Mordecai was sitting at the king's gate.

20 Esther still had not yet divulged her family background or her people as Mordecai had directed her.† Esther still followed Mordecaiís direction just like when she was brought up by him.

In those days, while Mordecai was sitting in the king's gate, two of the king's eunuchs, Bigthan and Teresh, who guarded the kingís private threshold, were angry and conspired to assassinate King Ahasuerus.

22 Mordecai found out about the plot.† He informed Queen Esther about it and Esther told the king in Mordecai's name.

23 When the matter was investigated, it was found to be true.† They both were hanged on the gallows.† It was written in the book of the annals before the king.

†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† DASV: Esther 3

After these things, King Ahasuerus [or Xerxes] promoted Haman the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, and advanced him, and set his seat above all the officials who were with him.

2 All the king's officials who were at the king's gate, would bow down and pay homage to Haman, for the king had commanded it concerning him. But Mordecai refused to bow down or pay homage.

3 Then the king's officials who were in the king's gate, said to Mordecai, "Why are you violating the king's command?"

4 They spoke to him day after day about it, but he refused to listen to them, so they told Haman, to see whether Mordecai's response would be tolerated, for he had told them he was a Jew.


5 When Haman saw that Mordecai refused to bow or pay him homage, Haman was furious.

6 But he disdained the idea of laying hands on Mordecai alone, for he was told who Mordecai's people were.† So Haman plotted to destroy all the Jews, Mordecai's people, throughout the whole kingdom of Ahasuerus.

7 In the first month, which is the month Nisan, in the twelfth year of King Ahasuerus, they cast Pur, that is, the lot, before Haman to determine the best day and month.† The lot fell on the twelfth month, which is the month Adar.


8 Haman said to King Ahasuerus, "There is a certain people scattered and dispersed among the peoples in all the provinces of your kingdom; and their laws are diverse from those of every other people, furthermore they do not keep the king's laws.† Therefore it is not beneficial for the king to tolerate them.

9 If it please the king, let there be a decree to destroy them.† I myself will pay 375 tons of silver into the king's treasuries for those officials who will carry out this, the king's business.

10 So the king took his ring from his hand, and gave it to Haman the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, the Jews' enemy.

11 Then the king said to Haman, "Keep your silver, the people are yours to do whatever pleases you."


12 Then the royal scribes were summoned on the thirteenth day of the first month.† Everything Haman commanded was written to the king's satraps and governors who were over all the provinces, and to the nobles of every people, to every province in their own script and their own language.† The decree was written in the name of King Ahasuerus and sealed with the king's signet ring.

13 Letters were sent by couriers to all the king's provinces, to destroy, kill, and exterminate all Jews, both young and old, little children and women, in one day, the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, which is the month Adar, and to plunder their possessions.

14 A copy of the decree was to be issued as a decree in every province and proclaimed to all the peoples, so that they would be ready for that day.

15 The couriers quickly went out by the order of the king, and the decree was issued from the citadel of Susa. †The king and Haman sat down to drink; but the city of Susa was thrown into confusion.

††††††††† †††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††DASV: Esther 4

Now when Mordecai learned about all that had happened, he tore his clothes and put on sackcloth and ashes.† He went out into the city wailing with a loud and bitter cry.

2 He went up only as far as the entrance of the king's gate for no one was allowed to enter the king's gate clothed in sackcloth.

3 In every province, the king's commandment and decree came, there was great mourning among the Jews.† They fasted, wept and wailed with many laying in sackcloth and ashes.

4 Esther's attendants and her eunuchs came and told her about it.† The queen was deeply distressed.† She sent clothes for Mordecai to put on, so he could take off his sackcloth, but he refused them.


5 Then Esther summoned Hathach, one of the king's eunuchs who had been appointed to attend her, and directed him to go to Mordecai, to find out what was happening and why he was doing it.

6 So Hathach went to Mordecai in the open square of the city in front of the king's gate.

7 Mordecai told him of all that had happened to him, and the exact amount of the money Haman had promised to pay to the royal treasuries to destroy the Jews.

8 Mordecai gave Hathach a copy of the decree that was issued from Susa for their destruction, so that it might be shown to Esther and inform her.† He also requested that she go in to the king to beg and to make a request before him on behalf of her people.

9 Hathach returned and told Esther what Mordecai had said.


10 Then Esther spoke to Hathach, and gave him a message to take back to Mordecai:

11 "All the king's officials, and even the people from the king's provinces know that there is only one law for any man or woman who comes to the king in the inner court who has not been invited: †he must be put to death, except for those to whom the king holds out the golden scepter, that person may live.† I have not been summoned to the king for the last thirty days."

12 When they reported Estherís response to Mordecai,

13 Mordecai sent back the following reply to Esther: "Do not imagine that because you are in the kingís house you alone will escape any more than the rest of the Jews.

14 For if you are silent at a time like this, then relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father's house will perish.† Who knows whether you have been granted royal status for such a time as this."


15 Then Esther sent this reply to Mordecai:

16 "Go, gather all the Jews found in Susa, and fast for me.† Do not eat or drink for three days, day or night. I also and my attendants will fast the same way. †Then I will go in to the king, even though it is against the law.† If I perish, I perish."

17 So Mordecai went away and did just as Esther had directed him.

†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† DASV: Esther 5

Now on the third day, Esther put on her royal robes, and stood in the inner court of the king's palace, across from the kingís quarters.† The king was sitting on his royal throne, opposite the entrance of the palace.

2 When the king saw Esther the queen standing in the court, she won favor in his sight, and the king held out the gold scepter that was in his hand to Esther. So Esther approached and touched the top of the scepter.

3 Then the king said to her, "What do you want, Queen Esther? What is your request? Whatever it is will be given to you, even up to the half of the kingdom."

4 Esther said, "If it pleases the king, let the king and Haman come today to the banquet that I have prepared for the king."


5 Then the king said, "Bring Haman quickly, so that it may be done as Esther has requested." So the king and Haman came to the banquet that Esther had prepared.

6 While they were drinking wine the king said to Esther, "What is your wish? It will be granted to you.† What is your request? Even to the half of the kingdom, it will be granted."

7 Then Esther replied, "My wish and my request is this:

8 If I have found favor in the sight of the king, and if it pleases the king to grant my wish and to grant my request, let the king and Haman come to the banquet that I will prepare for them. I will do tomorrow what the king has asked about."


9 Then Haman left that day happy with a glad heart.† But when Haman saw Mordecai in the king's gate, that he did not rise or tremble before him, he was furious at Mordecai.

10 Nevertheless Haman restrained himself and went home.† Then Haman sent and invited his friends and his wife Zeresh to join him.

11 Haman recounted to them the impressiveness of his riches, his many children, and all the ways in which the king had promoted him, and how he had advanced him over the other nobles and officials of the king.

12 Haman continued, "Yes, Esther the queen invited no one but me and the king to the banquet that she had prepared. Tomorrow she has also invited me to dine with the king.

13 Yet all this means nothing to me, so long as I see Mordecai the Jew sitting at the king's gate."

14 Then his wife Zeresh and all his friends suggested to him, "Let a seventy-five foot high gallows be built, and in the morning speak to the king that Mordecai may be hanged on it.† Then go with the king to the banquet satisfied." The suggestion pleased Haman so he had the gallows built.

†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† DASV: Esther 6

That night the king could not sleep, so he commanded to bring the book of historical records, the annals, and they were read to the king.

2 It was found written that two of the king's eunuchs who guarded the king's private quarters, Bigthana and Teresh, Mordecai had uncovered their conspiracy to assassinate King Ahasuerus.

3 The king asked, "What honor and dignity has been bestowed on Mordecai for this?" Then the king's attendants replied, "Nothing was done for him."

4 The king asked, "Who is in the courtyard?" Now Haman had come into the outer courtyard of the king's palace, to request permission from the king to hang Mordecai on the gallows that he had prepared for him.

5 The king's attendants answered, "Haman is standing in the courtyard." The king ordered, "Let him come in."

6 So Haman came in, and the king asked him, "What should be done to the man whom the king wishes to honor?" Now Haman thought to himself, "Who would the king want to honor more than me?"

7 So Haman replied to the king, "For the man the king desires to honor,

8 let a royal robe be brought which the king has worn, and a horse the king has ridden on, the one with a royal insignia on it.

9 Let the royal robe and the horse be delivered to the hand of one of the king's most noble officials, have him robe the man the king wishes to honor, and let him lead him on horseback through the city square, and proclaim before him, 'This is what is done to the man whom the king desires to honor.'"

10 Then the king said to Haman, "Quickly, take the robe and the horse, as you have just suggested for Mordecai the Jew, who sits at the king's gate.† Do not leave anything out of all that you have proposed."
11 Then Haman took the robe and the horse, and dressed Mordecai, and led him on the horse through the city square, proclaiming before him, "This is what will be done to the man the king desires to honor."


12 Mordecai returned to the king's gate. But Haman hurried home, agonizing and shamefully covering his head.

13 Haman told his wife Zeresh and all his friends everything that had happened to him. Then his wise men and his wife Zeresh warned him, "If Mordecai, before whom you have begun to fall is Jewish, you will not prevail.† You will surely be unsuccessful against him."

14 While they were still talking with him, the king's eunuchs came and hurried Haman off to the banquet Esther had prepared.

†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† DASV: Esther 7

So the king and Haman arrived at Queen Esther's banquet.

2 The king again asked Esther on the second day of the banquet of wine, "What do you want, Queen Esther? It will be granted to you.† What is your request? Even if it costs up to the half of the kingdom, it will be granted to you."

3 Then Queen Esther replied, "If I have found favor in your sight, O king, and if it pleases the king, let my life be granted to me by my petition, and the lives of my people at my request.

4 For both I and my people have been sold, to be destroyed, to be slain, and to be annihilated. But if we had merely been sold as male and female slaves, I would have held my peace, for such distress would not have justified disturbing the king."

5 Then King Ahasuerus spoke and said to Esther the queen, "Who is he, and where is he who would dare to do such a thing?"

6 Esther declared, "The adversary and the enemy is this wicked Haman." Then Haman was terrified before the king and queen.

7 The king arose in his outrage from the banquet of wine and stepped out into the palace garden.† Haman stood up to beg Queen Esther for his life; for he realized that the king was determined to destroy him.

8 When the king returned from the palace garden to the banquet of wine, Haman had thrown himself on the couch where Esther was sitting. Then said the king, "Will he even assault the queen before me in the palace?" As soon as the word went out of the king's mouth, his attendants covered Haman's face.

9 Then Harbonah, one of the eunuchs attending the king said, "Look, there is a seventy-five foot high gallows Haman had built at his house for Mordecai, who was the one who spoke to save the king." So the king ordered, "Hang him on it."

10 So they hanged Haman on the gallows he had built for Mordecai. Then the king's rage subsided.

†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† DASV: Esther 8

On that day King Ahasuerus [or Xerxes] gave the house of Haman, the enemy of the Jews, to Queen Esther. Mordecai came before the king for Esther had explained how he was related to her.

2 The king took off his signet ring, which he had taken back from Haman, and gave it to Mordecai. Esther set Mordecai over the house of Haman.


3 Esther spoke again with the king, and fell down at his feet, begging him with tears to put an end to the evil plan of Haman the Agagite, and the plot he had devised against the Jews.

4 Then the king held out the golden scepter to Esther. So Esther arose and stood before the king.

5 She said, "If it pleases the king, and if I have found favor in his sight, and if he thinks it is the right thing to do, and if he is pleased with me, then let an order be written to reverse the letters devised by Haman, the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, in which he wrote to destroy the Jews who are in all the king's provinces.

6 For how can I bear to watch such calamity come on my people? Or how can I stand to watch the destruction of my relatives?"

7 Then King Ahasuerus said to Queen Esther and to Mordecai the Jew, "Look, I have given Esther the house of Haman, and they have hanged him on the gallows, because he conspired to lay his hand on the Jews.

8 You may write in behalf of the Jews, whatever you wish in the king's name and seal it with the king's ring.† Any edict written in the king's name and sealed with the king's ring, cannot be reversed."


9 So the king's scribes were summoned at that time, on the twenty-third day of the third month, which is called Sivan.† An edict was written according to all that Mordecai ordered and sent to the Jews, the satraps, the governors and the officials of all 127 provinces from India to Ethiopia, to every province in its own script, and to every people in their own language, and also to the Jews in their own script and language.

10 Mordecai wrote in the name of King Ahasuerus, and sealed it with the king's signet ring, and sent the letters by mounted couriers, riding on swift steeds that were bred for the king's service, sired by the royal stud.

11 In these letters the king granted the Jews in every city the right to assemble and defend their lives; to destroy, slay, and annihilate any armed force of whatever people and province that might attack them, their women and children, and plunder their property.

12 This was to happen on one selected day in all the provinces of King Ahasuerus, on the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, the month Adar.

13 A copy of the edict was to be issued in every province and published to all the peoples, and on that day the Jews were to be ready to avenge themselves on their enemies.


14 So the couriers who rode on the swift royal steeds went out hurriedly urged on by the king's command.† The decree was issued from the citadel in Susa.

15 Mordecai went out from the presence of the king in royal robes of blue and white, and with a great gold crown and a purple mantle of fine linen.† The city of Susa shouted and was glad.

16 For the Jews there was exuberant happiness and joyful honor.

17 In every province and in every city the king's command and decree arrived, the Jews had gladness and joy, celebrating with a feast and a holiday. Many from among the peoples of the land became Jews because the fear of the Jews had fallen upon them.

†††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††DASV: Esther 9

Now on the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, that is the month Adar, when the king's command and his decree was about to be implemented, on the day that the enemies of the Jews hoped to gain power over them, quite to the contrary, the Jews gained mastery over those who hated them.
2 The Jews assembled themselves in their cities throughout all the provinces of King Ahasuerus [or Xerxes], to strike at those trying to harm them.† No one could withstand them, for the fear of them fell on all the peoples.

3 All the officials of the provinces, the satraps, the governors, and those who did the king's bidding, helped the Jews, because the fear of Mordecai had fallen on them.

4 For Mordecai was great in the king's house, and his fame spread throughout all the provinces as Mordecai grew more and more powerful.


5 The Jews struck all their enemies with the sword, killing and destroying them, and did whatever they wanted to those who hated them.

6 In the citadel at Susa the Jews killed and destroyed 500 men.

7 They also killed Parshandatha, Dalphon, Aspatha,

8 Poratha, Adalia, Aridatha,

9 Parmashta, Arisai, Aridai and Vaizatha,

10 the ten sons of Haman the son of Hammedatha, the Jew's enemy.† They did not lay a hand on the plunder.


11 On that day the number of those killed in the citadel of Susa was reported to the king.

12 The king said to Queen Esther, "The Jews have killed and destroyed 500 men in the citadel of Susa, along with the ten sons of Haman.† What then have they done in the rest of the king's provinces! Now what else do you want? It will be granted to you. Do you have a further request? It will be done."

13 Then answered Esther, "If it pleases the king, let the Jews who are in Susa be allowed to do tomorrow what they have done according decree for today.† Let Haman's ten sons be hanged on the gallows."

14 The king commanded it to be done and a decree was given out in Susa and they hanged Haman's ten sons.

15 So the Jews who were in Susa assembled themselves also on the fourteenth day of the month Adar.† They killed 300 men in Susa but did not lay a hand on the plunder.

16 The other Jews who were in the king's provinces assembled themselves in order to defend their lives.† They gained relief from their enemies and killed 75,000 of those who hated them, but did not lay a hand on the plunder.

17 This was done on the thirteenth day of the month Adar.† Then on the fourteenth day of the same month they rested, and made it a day of feasting and gladness.

18 But the Jews who were in Susa assembled on both the thirteenth and fourteenth day, then on the fifteenth day they rested, and made it a day of feasting and gladness.

19 Therefore the Jews of the villages, who lived in the rural towns, make the fourteenth day of the month Adar a day of gladness and feasting, and a holiday when they send gifts of food to each other.


20 Mordecai wrote these things down and sent letters to all the Jews who were in all the provinces of King Ahasuerus, both near and far,

21 to have them keep the fourteenth and fifteenth days of the month Adar, annually,

22 as the days on which the Jews had relief from their enemies, and the month when their sorrow was turned to gladness, and from mourning into a holiday.† These days were to be days of feasting, gladness, sending food to another and gifts to the poor.

23 So the Jews determined to do as they had begun to do, and as Mordecai had written to them.

24 For Haman the son of Hammedatha, the Agagite, the enemy of all the Jews, had plotted against the Jews to destroy them and had cast Pur, that is the lot, to crush and destroy them.

25 But when the matter came before the king, he gave written orders that Haman's wicked plot, which he had devised against the Jews, should come back on his own head, and that he and his sons should be hanged on the gallows.

26 That is why they called these days Purim, after the name of Pur [lot] and because of all the words of this letter, and what they had seen in this matter and what had happened to them.

27 The Jews established and accepted this tradition for themselves, their descendants and on all who joined them, that without fail they should keep these two days as it is written and according to the appointed time annually.

28 These days should be remembered and kept throughout every generation, every family, every province and every city.† These days of Purim should not fail to be celebrated by the Jews, nor should the remembrance of them perish from their descendants.


29 Then Queen Esther, the daughter of Abihail, and also Mordecai the Jew, wrote with full authority to confirm this second letter of Purim.

30 He sent letters to all the Jews, to the 127 provinces of the kingdom of Ahasuerus, with words of peace and truth,

31 to establish these days of Purim in their appointed time, just as decreed by Mordecai the Jew and Queen Esther, and as they had established for themselves and their descendants, with regard to the fasts and lament.

32 The command of Esther confirmed these practices of Purim, and it was written in the annals.

†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† DASV: Esther 10

Now King Ahasuerus [or Xerxes] laid tribute on the land and on the coastlands of the sea.

2 All the acts of his power and might, and the full account of the greatness of Mordecai, to which the king promoted him, are they not written in the scroll of the annals of the kings of Media and Persia?

3 For Mordecai the Jew was second only to King Ahasuerus.† He was great among the Jews and esteemed by many of his relatives because he sought the good and advocated for the welfare of all his people.