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For other English-language translations of this work, see Esther (Bible).
unknown, traditionally ascribed to Esther and/or Mordecai, translated by Wikisource
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Chapter 1[edit]

1 In the days of Ahasuerus, (the Ahasuerus who reigned from India to Ethiopia, [comprising] one hundred and twenty seven provinces), 2 in those days, as King Ahasuerus sat on his royal throne in Susa the capital, 3 in the third year of his reign, he made a feast for all his satraps and slaves, all the army of Persia and Media, the courtiers and governors of the provinces before him. 4 He showed the glory of his kingdom and the prestige of his glamorous greatness for many days, one hundred and eighty days.

5 And after those days ended, the king made a feast for all the people in Susa the capital, great and small alike, for seven days, in the courtyard of the king's house. 6 White cotton cloth and violet, fastened up with cords of linen and red purple on rods of silver and pillars of marble. Beds of gold and silver, upon a mosaic pavement of porphyry and marble, and mother-of-pearl, and dark marble.[1] 7 They let them drink from golden vessels, vessels which differed from one another, and a great deal of royal wine provided by the king. 8 The drinking was unrestricted, because that is how the king ordered all the officers of his household, that each man could do as he pleased. 9 In addition, Vashti the queen made a feast for the women of the royal household who belonged to King Ahasuerus.

10 On the seventh day, buzzed on wine, the king commanded Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, and Abagtha, Zethar, and Karkas, the seven officials who served in the presence of King Ahasuerus, 11 to bring Vashti the queen into the presence of the queen with the royal crown, to show the people and the nobles her beauty, because she was attractive. 12 But Queen Vashti regused to come at the king's commandment through his officials, and the king was very angry, and his temper flared up. 13 So the king said to his wise men, who knew the times (because this was the king's procedure toward who knew law and judgment. 14 And near him were Karshena, Shethar, Admatha, Tarshish, Meres, Marsena, and Memucan, the seven nobles of Persia and Media who saw the kings face and sat first in the kingdom), 15 "According to the law, what is to be done about Queen Vashti, because she has done done what king Ahaserus commanded by his officers?"

16 And Memucan answered before the king and the nobles, "Vashti has not only wronged the king, but also all the nobles and all the peoples who are in the provinces of King Ahasuerus, 17 because what the queen has done will be reported to all the wives, causing them to look down on their husbands when they hear, 'King Ahasuerus commanded Vashti the queen brought to his presence, but she did not come.' 18 And this very day the noblewomen of Persia and Media will say, who have heard about what the queen has done, will say [similar things] to all the king's nobles. Then there will be enough contempt and wrath. 19 If it please the king, let a royal commandment go forth from him, and let it be written among the laws of Persia and Media, which cannot be changed, that Vashti may no longer appear before King Ahasuerus, and let the king give her royal position to another woman better than her. 20 And when king's decree which he will make is heard throughout all his kingdom, which is massive, all the wives will respect their husbands, from the richest to the poorest.[2] 21 His proposal seemed good to the king, and the king did what Memucan suggested. 22 He sent letters to all the king's provinces, to each province in its own script, to every people in their own language, so that each man would be the ruler in his own home, and published in each people's language.


  1. This verse, according to Lewis Paton's commentary in the International Critical Commentary series, contains two ungrammatical sentence fragments. I have followed his interpretation, including his wording, of the verse and reproduced the awkward Hebrew with awkward English.
  2. literally, from big to small.

Old Testament
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