Chapters: 1 2
3 4 5
|Now it came to pass in the days of Ahasuerus, (this
is Ahasuerus which reigned, from India even unto Ethiopia, over an
hundred and seven and twenty provinces:)
|That in those days, when the king Ahasuerus sat on
the throne of his kingdom, which was in Shushan the palace,
|In the third year of his reign, he made a feast unto
all his princes and his servants; the power of Persia and Media, the
nobles and princes of the provinces, being before him:
|When he showed the riches of his glorious kingdom
and the honour of his excellent majesty many days, even and hundred and
|And when these days were expired, the king made a
feast unto all the people that were present in Shushan the palace, both
unto great and small, seven days, in the court of the garden of the
|Where were white, green, and blue, hangings,
fastened with cords of fine linen and purple to silver rings and pillars
of marble: the beds were of gold and silver, upon a pavement of red, and
blue, and white, and black, marble.
|And they gave them drink in vessels of gold, (the
vessels being diverse one from another,) and royal wine in abundance,
according to the state of the king.
|And the drinking was according to the law; none did
compel: for so the king had appointed to all the officers of his house,
that they should do according to every man's pleasure.
|Also Vashti the queen made a feast for the women in
the royal house which belonged to king Ahasuerus.
|On the seventh day, when the heart of the king was
merry with wine, he commanded Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, and
Abagtha, Zethar, and Carcas, the seven chamberlains that served in the
presence of Ahasuerus the king,
|To bring Vashti the queen before the king with the
crown royal, to show the people and the princes her beauty: for she was
fair to look on.
|But the queen Vashti refused to come at the king's
commandment by his chamberlains: therefore was the king very wroth, and
his anger burned in him.
|Then the king said to the wise men, which knew the
times, (for so was the king's manner toward all that knew law and
|And the next unto him was Carshena, Shethar, Admatha,
Tarshish, Meres, Marsena, and Memucan, the seven princes of Persia and
Media, which saw the king's face, and which sat the first in the
|What shall we do unto the queen Vashti according to
law, because she hath not performed the commandment of the king
Ahasuerus by the chamberlains?
|And Memucan answered before the king and the
princes, Vashti the queen hath not done wrong to the king only, but also
to all the princes, and to all the people that are in all the provinces
of the king Ahasuerus.
|For this deed of the queen shall come abroad unto
all women, so that they shall despise their husbands in their eyes, when
it shall be reported, The king Ahasuerus commanded Vashti the queen to
be brought in before him, but she came not.
|Likewise shall the ladies of Persia and Media say
this day unto all the king's princes, which have heard of the deed of
the queen. Thus shall there arise too much contempt and wrath.
|If it please the king, let there go a royal
commandment from him, and let it be written among the laws of the
Persians and the Medes, that it be not altered, That Vashti come no more
before king Ahasuerus; and let the king give her royal estate unto
another that is better than she.
|And when the king's decree which he shall make shall
be published throughout all his empire, (for it is great,) all the wives
shall give to their husbands honour, both to great and small.
|And the saying pleased the king and the princes; and
the king did according to the word of Memucan:
|For he sent letters into all the king's provinces,
into every province according to the writing thereof, and to every
people after their language, that every man should bear rule in his own
house, and that it should be published according to the language of
|After these things, when the wrath of king Ahasuerus
was appeased, he remembered Vashti, and what she had done, and what was
decreed against her.
|Then said the king's servants that ministered unto
him, Let there be fair young virgins sought for the king:
|And let the king appoint officers in all the
provinces of his kingdom, that they may gather together all the fair
young virgins unto Shushan the palace, to the house of the women, unto
the custody of Hege the king's chamberlain, keeper of the women; and let
their things for purification be given them:
|And let the maiden which pleaseth the king be queen
instead of Vashti. And the thing pleased the king; and he did so.
|Now in Shushan the palace there was a certain Jew,
whose name was Mordecai, the son of Jair, the son of Shimei, the son of
Kish, a Benjamite;
|Who had been carried away from Jerusalem with the
captivity which had been carried away with Jeconiah king of Judah, whom
Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had carried away.
|And he brought up Hadassah, that is, Esther, his
uncle's daughter: for she had neither father nor mother, and the maid
was fair and beautiful; whom Mordecai, when her father and mother were
dead, took for his own daughter.
|So it came to pass, when the king's commandment and
his decree was heard, and when many maidens were gathered together unto
Shushan the palace, to the custody of Hegai, that Esther was brought
also unto the king's house, to the custody of Hegai, keeper of the
|And the maiden pleased him, and she obtained
kindness of him; and he speedily gave her her things for purification,
with such things as belonged to her, and seven maidens, which were meet
to be given her, out of the king's house: and he preferred her and her
maids unto the best place of the house of the women.
|Esther had not showed her people nor her kindred:
for Mordecai had charged her that she should not show it.
|And Mordecai walked every day before the court of
the women's house, to know how Esther did, and what should become of
|Now when every maid's turn was come to go in to king
Ahasuerus, after that she had been twelve months, according to the
manner of the women, (for so were the days of their purifications
accomplished, to wit, six months with oil of myrrh, and six months with
sweet odours, and with other things for the purifying of the women;)
|Then thus came every maiden unto the king;
whatsoever she desired was given her to go with her out of the house of
the women unto the king's house.
|In the evening she went, and on the morrow she
returned into the second house of the women, to the custody of Shaashgaz,
the king's chamberlain, which kept the concubines: she came in unto the
king no more, except the king delighted in her, and that she were called
|Now when the turn of Esther, the daughter of Abihail
the uncle of Mordecai, who had taken her for his daughter, was come to
go in unto the king, she required nothing but what Hegai the king's
chamberlain, the keeper of the women, appointed. And Esther obtained
favour in the sight of all them that looked upon her.
|So Esther was taken unto king Ahasuerus into his
house royal in the tenth month, which is the month Tebeth, in the
seventh year of his reign.
|And the king loved Esther above all the women, and
she obtained grace and favour in his sight more than all the virgins; so
that he set the royal crown upon her head, and made her queen instead of
|Then the king made a great feast unto all his
princes and his servants, even Esther's feast; and he made a release to
the provinces, and gave gifts, according to the state of the king.
|And when the virgins were gathered together the
second time, then Mordecai sat in the king's gate.
|Esther had not yet showed her kindred nor her
people; as Mordecai had charged her: for Esther did the commandment of
Mordecai, like as when she was brought up with him.
|In those days, while Mordecai sat in the king's
gate, two of the king's chamberlains, Bigthan and Teresh, of those which
kept the door, were wroth, and sought to lay hand on the king Ahasuerus.
|And the thing was known to Mordecai, who told it
unto Esther the queen; and Esther certified the king thereof in
|And when inquisition was made of the matter, it was
found out; therefore they were both hanged on a tree: and it was written
in the book of the chronicles before the king.
|After these things did king Ahasuerus promote Haman
the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, and advanced him, and set his seat
above all the princes that were with him.
|And all the king's servants, that were in the king's
gate, bowed, and reverenced Haman: for the king had so commanded
concerning him. But Mordecai bowed not, nor did him reverence.
|Then the king's servants, which were in the king's
gate, said unto Mordecai, Why transgressest thou the king's commandment?
|Now it came to pass, when they spake daily unto him,
and he hearkened not unto them, that they told Haman, to see whether
Mordecai's matters would stand: for he had told them that he was a Jew.
|And when Haman saw that Mordecai bowed not, nor did
him reverence, then was Haman full of wrath.
|And he thought scorn to lay hands on Mordecai alone;
for they had showed him the people of Mordecai: wherefore Haman sought
to destroy all the Jews that were throughout the whole kingdom of
Ahasuerus, even the people of Mordecai.
|In the first month, that is, the month Nisan, in the
twelfth year of king Ahasuerus, they cast Pur, that is, the lot, before
Haman from day to day, and from month to month, to the twelfth month,
that is, the month Adar.
|And Haman said unto king Ahasuerus, There is a
certain people scattered abroad and dispersed among the people in all
the provinces of thy kingdom; and their laws are diverse from all
people; neither keep they the king's laws: therefore it is not for the
king's profit to suffer them.
|If it please the king, let it be written that they
may be destroyed: and I will pay ten thousand talents of silver to the
hands of those that have the charge of the business, to bring it into
the king's treasuries.
|And the king took his ring from his hand, and gave
it unto Haman the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, the Jews' enemy.
|And the king said unto Haman, The silver is given to
thee, the people also, to do with them as it seemeth good to thee.
|Then were the king's scribes called on the
thirteenth day of the first month, and there was written according to
all that Haman had commanded unto the king's lieutenants, and to the
governors that were over every province, and to the rulers of every
people of every province according to the writing thereof, and to every
people after their language; in the name of king Ahasuerus was it
written, and sealed with the king's ring.
|And the letters were sent by posts into all the
king's provinces, to destroy, to kill, and to cause to perish, all Jews,
both young and old, little children and women, in one day, even upon the
thirteenth day of the twelfth month, which is the month Adar, and to
take the spoil of them for a prey.
|The copy of the writing for a commandment to be
given in every province was published unto all people, that they should
be ready against that day.
|The posts went out, being hastened by the king's
commandment, and the decree was given in Shushan the palace. And the
king and Haman sat down to drink; but the city Shushan was perplexed.
|When Mordecai perceived all that was done, Mordecai
rent his clothes, and put on sackcloth with ashes, and went out into the
midst of the city, and cried with a loud and a bitter cry;
|And came even before the king's gate: for none might
enter into the king's gate clothed with sackcloth.
|And in every province, whithersoever the king's
commandment and his decree came, there was great mourning among the
Jews, and fasting, and weeping, and wailing; and many lay in sackcloth
|So Esther's maids and her chamberlains came and told
it her. Then was the queen exceedingly grieved; and she sent raiment to
clothe Mordecai, and to take away his sackcloth from him: but he
received it not.
|Then called Esther for Hatach, one of the king's
chamberlains, whom he had appointed to attend upon her, and gave him a
commandment to Mordecai, to know what it was, and why it was.
|So Hatach went forth to Mordecai unto the street of
the city, which was before the king's gate.
|And Mordecai told him of all that had happened unto
him, and of the sum of the money that Haman had promised to pay to the
king's treasuries for the Jews, to destroy them.
|Also he gave him the copy of the writing of the
decree that was given at Shushan to destroy them, to show it unto
Esther, and to declare it unto her, and to charge her that she should go
in unto the king, to make supplication unto him, and to make request
before him for her people.
|And Hatach came and told Esther the words of
|Again Esther spake unto Hatach, and gave him
commandment unto Mordecai;
|All the king's servants, and the people of the
king's provinces, do know, that whosoever, whether man or woman, shall
come unto the king into the inner court, who is not called, there is one
law of his to put him to death, except such to whom the king shall hold
out the golden sceptre, that he may live: but I have not been called to
come in unto the king these thirty days.
|And they told to Mordecai Esther's words.
|Then Mordecai commanded to answer Esther, Think not
with thyself that thou shalt escape in the king's house, more than all
|For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this
time, then shall there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews
from another place; but thou and thy father's house shall be destroyed:
and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as
|Then Esther bade them return Mordecai this answer,
|Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in
Shushan, and fast ye for me, and neither eat nor drink three days, night
or day: I also and my maidens will fast likewise; and so will I go in
unto the king, which is not according to the law: and if I perish, I
|So Mordecai went his way, and did according to all
that Esther had commanded him.
|Now it came to pass on the third day, that Esther
put on her royal apparel, and stood in the inner court of the king's
house, over against the king's house: and the king sat upon his royal
throne in the royal house, over against the gate of the house.
|And it was so, when the king saw Esther the queen
standing in the court, that she obtained favour in his sight: and the
king held out to Esther the golden sceptre that was in his hand. So
Esther drew near, and touched the top of the sceptre.
|And Esther answered, If it seem good unto the king,
let the king and Haman come this day unto the banquet that I have
prepared for him.
|Then the king said, Cause Haman to make haste, that
he may do as Esther hath said. So the king and Haman came to the banquet
that Esther had prepared.
|And the king said unto Esther at the banquet of
wine, What is thy petition? and it shall be granted thee: and what is
thy request? even to the half of the kingdom it shall be performed.
|Then answered Esther, and said, My petition and my
|If I have found favour in the sight of the king, and
if it please the king to grant my petition, and to perform my request,
let the king and Haman come to the banquet that I shall prepare for
them, and I will do to morrow as the king hath said.
|Then went Haman forth that day joyful and with a
glad heart: but when Haman saw Mordecai in the king's gate, that he
stood not up, nor moved for him, he was full of indignation against
|Nevertheless Haman refrained himself: and when he
came home, he sent and called for his friends, and Zeresh his wife.
|And Haman told them of the glory of his riches, and
the multitude of his children, and all the things wherein the king had
promoted him, and how he had advanced him above the princes and servants
of the king.
|Haman said moreover, Yea, Esther the queen did let
no man come in with the king unto the banquet that she had prepared but
myself; and to morrow am I invited unto her also with the king.
|Yet all this availeth me nothing, so long as I see
Mordecai the Jew sitting at the king's gate.
|Then said Zeresh his wife and all his friends unto
him, Let a gallows be made of fifty cubits high, and to morrow speak
thou unto the king that Mordecai may be hanged thereon: then go thou in
merrily with the king unto the banquet. And the thing pleased Haman; and
he caused the gallows to be made.