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424 The magnificent feasts

ESTHER.

of Ahasuerusi subbath; and some of my gerrants set I them swear by God, saying, Ye shall not at the gates, that there should no burden give your daughters vüto their sons, nor be brought in on the subbath dar.

take their daughters unto your scns, or 20 So the merchants and sellers of all for yourselves. kind of ware lodged without Jerusalem | 26 Did not Solomon king of Israel sin once or twice.

of these things ? yet among many nations 21 Then I testified against them, and was there no king like him, who was saici uito them, Wny lcdge ve about the beloved of his God, and God made him Wall? if ve do xo again, I will lay hands king over all Israel: nevertheless even on you. From that time forth caine they | him dici outlandish women cause to sin. no inore on the sabbath.

27 Shall we then hearken unto you to 22 And I commanded the Levites, that do all this great evil, to transgress against they should cleanse themselves, and that our God in marrying strange wives? the skuld come und keep the gates, to 28 And one of the sons of Joiada, the sanctify the sabbath day. Remember son of Eliashib the high priest, was sonme, O my Gol, concerning this also, and in-law to Sanballat the Horonite: therespare me according to the greatness of || fore I chased him from me. thy nercy.

1 29 Remember them, O my God, be23 in those dars also saw I Jews | cause they have defiled the priesthood, that luid married wives of Ashdod, of and the covenant of the priesthood, and Ammon, and of Moab:

of the Levites. 24 And their children spake half in the 30 Thus cleansed I them from all speech of Ashdoi, and could not speak in strangers, and appointed the wards of ure Jews language, but according to the the priests and the Levites, every one in language f each people.

his business ; 45 And I contended with them, and 31 And for the wood-offering, at times cursed them, ani smote aurtain of them, 1 ppcinted, and for the first-fruits. Reand plucked off their hair, and made Il member me, O my God, for good. worossrrowrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

THE BOOK OF ESTHER.
CHAP. I.

li another,) and royal wine in abundance, 1 Ahasuerus makith royal feasts. 10|| according to the state of the king

Va hii's disobedience, and punishment. 8 And the drinking was according to N OW it came to pass in the days of the law; none did coinpel; for so the

W Ahasuerus, (this is Ahasuerus which | king had appoinied to all the officers of reigned from India even unto Ethiopia, 1 his house, that they should do according over an hundred and seven and twenty to every man's pleasure. provinces :)

9 Also Vashti the queen made a feast 2 That in these days, when the king for the women in the royal house which Ahasuerus sat on the irone of his king belonged to king Ahasuerus. . dom, which was in Shushan the palace, 109 On the seventh day, when the heart

3 In the third year of his reign, he l of the king was merry with wine, he comimade a feast unto all his princes and his manded Mchuman, Riztha, Harbona, Bigservants; the power of Persia and Media, il tha, and Abagtha, Zethar, and Carcas, the nobles and princes of the provinces, the seven chamberlains that served in the bring before him:

presence of Ahasuerus the king, 4 When he shewed the riches of his l 11 To bring Vashti the queen before glorious kingrlom and the honour of his | the king with the crown royal, to siew excellent majesty many days, even an | the people and the princes her beauty : hundred and fourscore days.

for she was fair to look on. 5 And when these days were expired, | 12 But the queen Vashti refused to come the king made a feast unto all the peo- | at the king's commandment by his chample that were present in Shushan the l berlains : therefore was the king very palace, both unto great and small, seven wrotli, and his anger buined in him. days, in the court of the garden of the il 13 9 Then the king said to the wise king's palace;

men, which knew the times, (for so was 6 11here were white, green, and blue | the king's manner toward all that knew hangings, fastened with cords of fine linen law and judgment; and purple to silver rings and pillars of 14 And the next unto him quas Carmarble: the beds were of gold and silver, shena, Shethar, Admatha, Tarshish, upon a pavement of red, and blue, and | Neres, Marsena, and Memucan, the white, and black marble.

seven princes of Persia and Media, which 7 And they gave them drink in vessels of saw the king's face, and which sat the gold, (the vessels being diverse one from first in the kingdom ;)

A qucen to be chosen.

CHAP. 11. Nfordecai and Esther's affinity. 425, 15 What shall we do unto the queen, And the thing pleased the king; and he Vashti according to law, because she liath did so. pot performed the commandment of the 5 | Now in Shushan the palace there king Ahasuerus by the chanberlains ? was a certain Jew, whose name was

16 And Memucan answered before the ! Mordecai, the son of Jair, the son of king and the princes, Vashti the queen Slimei, the son of Kish, a Benjamite; hath not done wrong to the king only, but 6 Who had been carried away from also to all the princes, and to all the peo- Jerusalem with the captivity which had ple that are in all the provinces of the been carried away with Jeconiah king of king Ahasuerus.

1 Judah, whom Nebuchadnezzar the king 17 For this deed of the queen shall of Babylon had carried away. come abroad unto all women, so that I 7 And he brought up Hadassah, that they shall despise their husbands in their is, Esther, his uncle's daughter : for she eyes, when it shall be reported, The king had neither father nor mother, and the Ahasuerus commanded Vashti the queen maid was fair and beautiful; whom Morto be brought in before him, but she decai, when her father and mother were

dead, took for his own daughter. 18. Likewise shall the ladies of Persia 8 So it came to pass, when the king's and Media say this day unto all the king's commandment and his decree was heard, princes, which have heard of the deed and when many maidens were gatherer! of the queen. Thus shall there arise too together unto Shushan the palace, to the much contempt and wrath.

custody of Hegai, that Esther was brought 19 If it please the king, let there go also unto the king's house, to the custody a royal commandment from him, and let of Hegai, keeper of the women. it be written ainong the laws of the Per 9 And the maicen pleased him, and she sians and the Medes, that it be not al- || obtained kindness of him; and he speedily tered, That Vashti come no more before I gave her her things for purification, with king Abasuerus; and let the king give such things as belonged to her, and serher royal estate unto another that is bet en maidens which were meet to be given ter than she.

her, out of the king's house: and he pre20 And when the king's decree which ferred her and her maids unto the best he shall make shall be published through- place of the house of the women. out all his empire, (for it is great,) all | 10 Esther had not shewed her people the wives shall give to their husbands nor her kindred; for Mordecai had charghonour, both to great and small,

ed her that she should not shew it. 21 And the saying pleased the king 3 11 And Mordecai waiked every day and the princes; and the king did accord before the court of the women's house, to ing to the word of Memucan:

22 For he sent letters into all the king's I become of her. provinces, into every province accord- | 12 Now when every maid's turn was ing to the writing thereof, and to every come to go in to king Ahasuerus, afier people after tlieir language, that every il that she had been twelve months, acman should bear rule in his own house, cording to the inanner of the women, and that it should be published ac (for so were the days of their purifications cording to the language of every peo- | accomplished, to wit, six months with ple.

oil of myrrh, and six months with sweet CHAP. II.

odours, and with other things for the pu1 Out of the choice of virgins, a queen | rifying of the women ;)

is to be chosen. 15 Esther is elected. L 13 Then thus came every maiden unto AFTER these things, when the wrath the king; whatsoever she desired was. h of king Ahasuerus was appeased, l given her to go with her out of the house he remembered Vashti, and what she had of the women unto the king's house. done, and what was decreed against hier: 14 In the evening she went, and on the

2 Then said the king's servants that I morrow she returned into the second ministered unto him, Let there be fair house of the women, to the custody of youing virgins sought for the king: : Shaasligaz, the king's chamberlain, which

3 And let the king appoint officers in kept the concubines; she came in unto

they may gather together all the fair il lighted in her, and that she were called young virgis unto Shushan the palace, by namie. to the house of the women, unto the l. 15 9 Now when the turn of Esther, the custody of Hege the king's chamberlain, | daughter of Abilail the uncle of Mordekeeper of the women; and let their cai, who had taken her for his daughter, things for purification be given themi: l was come to go in viito the king, she 11*

4 And let the maiden which pleaseth | quired nothing but what Hegai the king's the king be queen instead of Vashţi. ll Chamberlain, the keeper of the wonien, 426 Esther chosen queens ESTHER. Haman's rage against the Jews' appynted. And Esther obtained favout |cai bowed not, nor did him reverence, in the sight of all them that looked upon then was Haman full of wrath. her.

6 And he thought scort to lay hands 16 So Esther was taken unto king A-on Mordecai alone; for they had shewed hasuerus into his house royal in the tenth him the people of Mordecai: wherefore month, which is the month Tebeth, in Haman sought to destroy all the Jews the seventh year of his reign.

ll that were throughout the whole king17 And the king loved Esther above | dom of Ahasuerus, even the people of all the women, and she obtained grace Mordecai. and favour in his sight more than all the 7 f In the first month, (that is, the virgins; so that he set the royal crown month Nisan,) in the twelfth year of king upra her head, and made her queen in- | Ahasuerus, they cast Pur, that is, the stead of Vashti.

Lot, before Haman from day to day, and 18 Then the king made a great feast from month to month, to the twelfth unto all his princes and his servants, even month, that is, the month Adar. Esther's feast; and he made a release to 8 | And Haman said unto king Ahasthe provinces, and gave gifts, according uerus, There is a certain people scatto the state of the king.

| tered abroad and dispersed among the 19 And when the virgins were gather people in all the provinces of thy kinged together the second time, then Mor doni; and their laws are diverse from all decai sat in the king's gate.

people; neither keep they the king's laws: 20 Esther had not yet shewed her kin therefore it is not for the king's profit to dred, nor her people; as Mordecai had suffer them. charged her: for Esther did the com 9 If it please the king, let it be written mundiment of Mordecai, like as when she that they may be destroyed : and I will was brought up with him.

pay ten thousand talents of silver to the 21 [ In those days, while Mordecai hands of those that have the charge of sat in the king's gate, two of the king's the business, to bring it into the king's chamberlains, BigihanandTeresh,of those treasuries. which kept the door, were wroth, and || 10 And the king took his ring from sought to lay hand on the king Ahas- his hand, and gave it unto Haman the uerus.

son of Hammedatha the Agagite, the 22 And the thing was known to Mor- Jews enemy. decai, who told it unto Esther the queen ; | 11 And the king said unto Haman, The and Esther certified the king thereof in silver is given to thee, the people also, to Mordecai's name.

| do with them as it seemeth good to thee. 23 And when inquisition was made of 12 Then were the king's scribes called

they were both hanged on a tree: and it and there was written according to all was written in the book of the chronicles that Haman had commanded unto the before the king.

king's lieutenants, and to the governors. CHAP. III.

that were over every province, and to Haman advanced by the king, and de- || the rulers of every people of every prospised by Mordecai, seeketh revenge || vince, according to the writing thereof, upon all the Jews.

and to every people after their lanAFTER these things did king Ahasu- l guage ; in the name of king Ahasuerus

erus promote Haman the son of was it written, and sealed with the king's Hammedatha the Agagite, and advanced ring. him, and set bis seatabove all the princes 13 And the letters were sent by posts that were with him.

into all the king's provinces, to destroy, 2 And all the king's servants that were to kill, and to cause to perish, all Jews, in the king's gate, bowed, and reverenc both young and old, little children and ed Haman; for the king had so coinmand women, in one day, even upon the thircd concerning him. But Mordecai bowed teenth day of the twelfth month, whiclı not, nor did him reverence.

is the month Adar, and to take the spoil 3 Then the king's servants which were l of them for a prey. in the king's gate, said unto Mordecai, 14 The copy of the writing for a comWhy transgressest thou the king's com- mandment to be given in every province mandment?

was published unto all people, that they 4 Now it came to pass, when they spake || should be ready against that day. daily unto him, and he hearkened not 15 The posts went out, being hastenunto them, that they told Haman, to led by the king's commandment, and see whether Mordecai’s matters would the decree was given in Shushan the stand: for he had told them that he wus | palace. And the king and Haman sat a Jew.

down to drink; but the city Shushan 5 And when Haman saw that Morde- ll was perplexed.

Mordecai and the Jews mourn. CAAP. IV. V.

Esther's banquet. 427 CHAP. IV.

y peace at this time, then shall thereenlarge1 Mordecai and the Jews mourn. 15 Est ment and deliverance arise to the Jews her appointeth a fast.

from another place; but thou and thy faW HEN Mordecai perceived all that ther's house shall be destroyed: and who

W was done, Mordecai rent his clothes, knoweth, whether thou art come to the and put on sackcloth with ashes, and kingdom for such a time as this? went out into the midst of the city, and 15 | Then Esther bade them return cried with a loud and a bitter cry; Mordecai this answer,

2 And came even before the king's 16 Go, gather together all the Jews that gate: for none might enter into the king's are present in Shushan, and fast ye for me, gate clothed with sackcloth.

and neither eat nor drink three days, 3 And in every province whithersoever night or day: I also and my maidens will the king's commandment and his decree fast likewisc; and so will I go in unto the came, there qvas great mourning among king, which is not according to the law; the Jews, and fasting, and weeping, and | and if I perish, I perish. wailing ; and many lay in sackcloth and 17 So Mordecai went his way, and did ashes.

| according to all that Esther had com4 So Esther's maids and her chamber- | manded him. lains came and told it her. Then was the

CHAP. V. queen exceedingly grieved ; and she sent || Esther, obtaining the king's favour, inraiment to clothe Mordecai, and to take viteth the king and Humantoc banquet. away his sackcloth from him: but he re- | N OW it came to pass on the third ceived it not.

N day, that Esther put on her royalan5 Then called Esther for Hatach, one narel, and stood in the inner court of of the king's chamberlains, whom he had the king's house, over against the king's appointed to attend upon her, and gave house: and the king sat upon his royal him a commandment to Mordecai, to throne in the royal house, over against know what it was, and why it was. the gate of the house.

6 So Hatach went forth to Mordecai, || 2 And it was so, when the king saw Estunto the street of the city, which was be her the queen standing in the court, thai fore the king's gate.

she obtained favour in his sight: and the 7 And Mordecai told him of all that king held out to Esther the golden scephad happened unto him, and of the sum || tre that was in his hand. So Esther drew of the money that Haman had promised near, and touched the top of the sceptre. to pay to the king's treasuries for the 3 Then said the king unto her, What Jews, to destroy them.

wilt thou, queen Esther? and what is thy 8 Also he gave him the copy of the request ? it shall be even given thee to writing of the decree that was given at the half of the kingdom. Shushan to destroy them, to shew it unto 4 And Esther answered, If it seem good Esther, and to declare it unto her, and unto the king, let the king and Haman to charge her that she should go in unto come this day unto the banquet that I the king, to make supplication unto him, have prepared for him. and to make reqnest before him for her 5 Then the king said, Cause Haman people.

to make haste, that he may do as Esther *9* And Hatach came and told Esther I hath said. So the king and Haman came the words of Mordecai.

to the banquet that Esther had prepared. 10 | Again Esther spake unto Hatach, 6 | And the king said unto Esther at the and gare him commandment unto Mor banquet of wine, What is thy petition ? decai;

and it shall be granted thee: and what is 11 All the king's servants, and the peo thy request ? even to the half of the ple of the king's provinces, do know, that | kingdom it shall be performed. whosoever, whether man or woman, shall 7 Then answered Esther, and said, My come unto the king into the inner court, ll petition and my request is : who is not called, there is one law of his 8 If I have found favour in the sight to put him to death, except such to whom of the king, and if it please the king to the king shall hold out the golden sceptre, grant my petition, and to perforın my that he may live : but I have not been request, let the king and Haman come called to come in unto the king these to the banquet that I shall prepare for thirty days.

them, and I will do to-morrow as the 12 And they told to Mordecai Est- king hath said. her's words.

91 Then went Haman forth that day 13 Then Mordecai commanded to an- 1 joyful and with a glad heart : but when swer Esther, Think not with thyself that Haman saw Mordecai in the king's gate, thou shalt escape in the king's house, that he stood not up, nor moved for him, more than all the Jews.

| he was full of indignation against Mor: 14 For if thou altogether lo!dest thy I decaị.

428 Haman's pride.

ESTHER

Jlordecai lanoured 10 Nevertheless, Haman refrained him- most noble princes, that they may array self: and when he came home, he sent, the man tur hal whom the king delightand called for his friends, and Zertsh his eth to honour, and uring him on horsewite.

back through the street of the city, and 11 And Haman told them of the glory proclaim before him, Thus shall it be of his riches, and the multitude of his 'cone to the man whom the long dechildren, and all the things wherein the lighteth to honour. king had promoted hini, and how he' 10 Then the king said to Haman, had advanced him above the princes and Make hasie, and take the apparel and servants of the king.

the horse, as thou hast said, and do even 12 Haman said moreover, Yea, Esther so to Mordecai the Jew, that sitteth at the queen did let no man conse in with the king's gate: let nothing fail of all the king unto the banquet that she had that thou hast spoken, prepared but myself; and to-morrow! 11 Then took Haman the apparel and am I invited unto her also with the king the horse, and arraved Mordecai, and

13 Yet all this availethi me nothing, so I brought him on horseback through the long as I see Mordecai the Jew sitting at i street of the city, and proclaimed before the king's gate.

him, Thus shall it be done unto the man 14 Then said Zeresh his wife and all whom the king delighteth to hononr: l:is friends unto him, let a gallows be 12 | And Mordecai came again to the mule of fifty cubits high, and to-morrow 1 king's gate. But Haman hasted to his speak thou unto the king that Mordecai house mourning, and having his head may be hanged thercon : then go thou in covered. Inerrily with the king into the banquct. i! 13 And Haman told Zeresh his wife And the thing pleased Haman ; and he and all his friends every thing that had caused the gallows to be made.

befallen him. Then said his wise men. CAP. VI.

and Zeresh his wife unto him, If Mor1 Ahasuerus rewardeth Mordecai. 11 | decai be of the seed of the Jews, before

Haman docth him honour. II whom thou hast begun to fall, thou shalt ON that night could not the king | not prevail against him, but shalt surely

U sleep, and he commanded to bring fall before him. the book of records of the chronicles; l 14 And while they were vet talking and they were read before the king. with him, came the king's chamberlains,

2. And it was found written, that Mor- and hasted to bring Haman unto the bandecai had told of Bigthana and Teresh, i quet that Esther had prepared. two of the king's chamberlains, the keep

CHAP. VII. ers of the door, who sought to lay hand 1 Esther sueth for her own life, and her on the king Ahasuerus.

people. 7 The king causeth Haman to 3 And the king said, What honour and be hanged on liis oron gallutus. dignity hath been done to Mortlecai for ' o the king and Haman came to banthis? Then said the king's servants that n quet with Esther the queen. ministered unto him, There is nothing 2 And the king said again to Esther done for him.

on the second day at the banquet of wine, 4 And the king said, Who is in the What is thy petition, queen Esther? and court? Now Haman was come into the it shall be granted thee: and what is thy outward court of the king's house, to speak | request ? and it shall be performed, even unto the king to hang Mordecai on the to the half of the kingelom. i ; gallows that he had prepared for him. Bi S Then Esther the queen answered and

5 And the king's servants' said unto said, If I have found favour in thy sight, him, Behoki, Haman standeth in the court. O king, and if it please the king, let my And the king said, Let him come in, life be given me at my petition, and my

6 So Haman came in. And the king people at my request : kuid unto him, What shall be done unto 4 For we are sold, I and my people, to the man whom the king delighteth to be destroved, to be slain, and to perish. honour! Now Haman thought in his But if we had been sold for bond-men and herrt, To whom woull the king delight bond-women, I had held my tongue, alto do honour more than to myscif ? though the enemy could not countervail

7 And Hama! answered the king, the king's damage. For the man whom the king delighteth to 5 Then the king Ahasuerus answered lionour,

and said unto Esther the queen, Who is 8 Let the royal apparel be brought he, and where is he, that durst presume which the king useth to wear, and the in luis heart to do so? home that the king rideth upon, and the 6 And Esther said, The adversary and Crown roval which is set upon his head : enemy is this wicked Haman. Then

9 And let this apparel and horse be de- laman was afraid before the king and livered to the hand of one of the king's the queen.

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