3:4. And when they were saying this often, and he would not hearken to them, they told Aman, desirous to know whether he would continue in his resolution: for he had told them that he was a Jew.
3:5. Now when Aman had heard this, and had proved by experience that Mardochai did not bend his knee to him, nor worship him, he was exceeding angry.
3:6. And he counted it nothing to lay his hands upon Mardochai alone: for he had heard that he was of the nation of the Jews, and he chose rather to destroy all the nation of the Jews that were in the kingdom of Assuerus.
3:7. In the first month (which is called Nisan) in the twelfth year of the reign of Assuerus, the lot was cast into an urn, which in Hebrew is called Phur, before Aman, on what day and what month the nation of the Jews should be destroyed: and there came out the twelfth month, which is called Adar.
3:8. And Aman said to king Assuerus: There is a people scattered through all the provinces of thy kingdom, and separated one from another, that use new laws and ceremonies, and moreover despise the king's ordinances: and thou knowest very well that it is not expedient for thy kingdom that they should grow insolent by impunity.
3:9. If it please thee, decree that they may be destroyed, and I will pay ten thousand talents to thy treasurers.
3:10. And the king took the ring that he used, from his own hand, and gave it to Aman, the son of Amadathi of the race of Agag, the enemy of the Jews,
3:11. And he said to him: As to the money which thou promisest, keep it for thyself: and as to the people, do with them as seemeth good to thee.
3:12. And the king's scribes were called in the first month Nisan, on the thirteenth day of the same mouth: and they wrote, as Aman had commanded, to all the king's lieutenants, and to the judges of the provinces, and of divers nations, as every nation could read, and hear according to their different languages, in the name of king Assuerus: and the letters, sealed with his ring,
3:13. Were sent by the king's messengers to all provinces, to kill and destroy all the Jews, both young and old, little children, and women, in one day, that is, on the thirteenth of the twelfth month, which is called Adar, and to make a spoil of their goods.
3:14. And the contents of the letters were to this effect, that all provinces might know and be ready against that day.
3:15. The couriers that were sent made haste to fulfil the king's commandment. And immediately the edict was hung up in Susan, the king and Aman feasting together, and all the Jews that were in the city weeping.
Esther Chapter 4
Mardochai desireth Esther to petition the king for the Jews. They join in fasting and prayer.
4:1. Now when Mardochai had heard these things, he rent his garments, and put on sackcloth, strewing ashes on his head and he cried with a loud voice in the street in the midst of the city, shewing the anguish of his mind.
4:2. And he came lamenting in this manner even to the gate of the palace: for no one clothed with sackcloth might enter the king's court.
4:3. And in all provinces, towns, and places, to which the king's cruel edict was come, there was great mourning among the Jews, with fasting, wailing, and weeping, many using sackcloth and ashes for their bed.
4:4. Then Esther's maids and her eunuchs went in, and told her. And when she heard it she was in a consternation and she sent a garment, to clothe him, and to take away the sackcloth: but he would not receive it.
4:5. And she called for Athach the eunuch, whom the king had appointed to attend upon her, and she commanded him to go to Mardochai, and learn of him why he did this.
4:6. And Athach going out went to Mardochai, who was standing in the street of the city, before the palace gate:
4:7. And Mardochai told him all that had happened, how Aman had promised to pay money into the king's treasures, to have the Jews destroyed.
4:8. He gave him also a copy of the edict which was hanging up in Susan, that he should shew it to the queen, and admonish her to go in to the king, and to entreat him for her people.
4:9. And Athach went back and told Esther all that Mardochai had said.
4:10. She answered him, and bade him say to Mardochai:
4:11. All the king's servants, and all the provinces that are under his dominion, know, that whosoever, whether man or woman, cometh into the king's inner court, who is not called for, is immediately to be put to death without any delay: except the king shall hold out the golden sceptre to him, in token of clemency, that so he may live. How then can I go in to the king, who for these thirty days now have not been called unto him?
4:12. And when Mardochai had heard this,
4:13. He sent word to Esther again, saying: Think not that thou mayst save thy life only, because thou art in the king's house, more than all the Jews:
4:14. For if thou wilt now hold thy peace, the Jews shall be delivered by some other occasion: and thou, and thy father's house shall perish.
And who knoweth whether thou art not therefore come to the kingdom, that thou mightest be ready in such a time as this?
4:15. And again Esther sent to Mardochai in these words:
4:16. Go, and gather together all the Jews whom thou shalt find in Susan, and pray ye for me. Neither eat nor drink for three days and three nights: and I with my handmaids will fast in like manner, and then I will go in to the king, against the law, not being called, and expose myself to death and to danger.
4:17. So Mardochai went, and did all that Esther had commanded him.
Esther Chapter 5
Esther is graciously received: she inviteth the king and Aman to dinner, Aman prepareth a gibbet for Mardochai.
5:1. And on the third day Esther put on her royal apparel, and stood in the inner court of the king's house, over against the king's hall: now he sat upon his throne in the hall of the palace, over against the door of the house.
5:2. And when he saw Esther the queen standing, she pleased his eyes, and he held out toward her the golden sceptre, which he held in his hand and she drew near, and kissed the top of his sceptre.
5:3. And the king said to her: What wilt thou, queen Esther? what is thy request? if thou shouldst even ask one half of the kingdom, it shall be given to thee.
5:4. But she answered: If it please the king, I beseech thee to come to me this day, and Aman with thee to the banquet which I have prepared.
5:5. And the king said forthwith: Call ye Aman quickly, that he may obey Esther's will. So the king and Aman came to the banquet which the queen had prepared for them.
5:6. And the king said to her, after he had drunk wine plentifully: What dost thou desire should be given thee? and for what thing askest thou?
although thou shouldst ask the half of my kingdom, thou shalt have it.
5:7. And Esther answered: My petition and request is this:
5:8. If I have found favour in the king's sight, and if it please the king to give me what I ask, and to fulfil my petition: let the king and Aman come to the banquet which I have prepared them, and to morrow I will open my mind to the king.
5:9. So Aman went out that day joyful and merry. And when he saw Mardochai sitting before the gate of the palace, and that he not only did not rise up to honour him, but did not so much as move from the place where he sat, he was exceedingly angry:
5:10. But dissembling his anger, and returning into his house, he called together to him his friends, and Zares his wife:
5:11. And he declared to them the greatness of his riches, and the multitude of his children, and with how great glory the king had advanced him above all his princes and servants.
5:12. And after this he said: Queen Esther also hath invited no other to the banquet with the king, but me: and with her I am also to dine to morrow with the king:
5:13. And whereas I have all these things, I think I have nothing, so long as I see Mardochai the Jew sitting before the king's gate.
5:14. Then Zares his wife, and the rest of his friends answered him: Order a great beam to be prepared, fifty cubits high, and in the morning speak to the king, that Mardochai may be hanged upon it, and so thou shalt go full of joy with the king to the banquet. The counsel pleased him, and he commanded a high gibbet to be prepared.
Esther Chapter 6
The king hearing of the good service done him by Mardochai, commandeth Aman to honour him next to the king, which he performeth.