Esther
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International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
ESTHER

es'-ter ('ecter, akin to the Zend tstara, the Sanskrit stri, the Greek aster, "a star," Esther):

Esther was a Jewish orphan, who became the queen of Xerxes, in some respects the greatest of the Persian kings. She was brought up at Susa by her cousin Mordecai, who seems to have held a position among the lower officials of the royal palace. Vashti, Xerxes' former queen, was divorced; and the most beautiful virgins from all the provinces of the empire were brought to the palace of Susa that the king might select her successor. The choice fell upon the Jewish maiden. Soon after her accession a great crisis occurred in the history of the Jews. The entire people was threatened with destruction. The name of Esther is forever bound up with the record of their deliverance. By a course of action which gives her a distinguished place among the women of the Bible, the great enemy of the Jews was destroyed, and her people were delivered. Nothing more is known of her than is recorded in the book which Jewish gratitude has made to bear her name.

Change of Name:

The change in the queen's name from Hadassah hadacah, "a myrtle," to Esther, "a star," may possibly indicate the style of beauty for which the Persian queen was famous. The narrative displays her as a woman of clear judgment, of magnificent self-control, and capable of the noblest self-sacrifice.

See ESTHER, BOOK OF.

John Urquhart

ESTHER, BOOK OF

Contents

1. The Canonicity of Esther 2. Its Authorship 3. Its Date 4. Its Contents 5. The Greek Additions 6. The Attacks upon the Book 7. Some of the Objections 8. Confirmations of the Book

This book completes the historical books of the Old Testament. The conjunction "w" (waw = and), with which it begins, is significant. It shows that the book was designed for a place in a series, the waw linking it on to a book immediately preceding, and that the present arrangement of the Hebrew Bible differs widely from what must have been the original order. At present Esther follows Ecclesiastes, with which it has no connection whatever; and this tell-tale "and," like a body-mark on a lost child, proves that the book has been wrenched away from its original connection. There is no reason to doubt that the order in the Septuagint follows that of the Hebrew Bible of the 3rd or the 4th century B.C., and this is the order of the Vulgate, of the English Bible, and other VSS: The initial waw is absent from Genesis, Deuteronomy, 1 Chronicles and Nehemiah. The historical books are consequently arranged, by the insertion and the omission of waw, into these four divisions: Genesis to Numbers; Deuteronomy to 2 Kings; 1 Chronicles to Ezra; Nehemiah and Esther.

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1. The Canonicity of Esther:

Of the canonicity of the book there is no question. That there was a distinct guardianship of the Canon by the Jewish priesthood has figured less in recent discussions than it should. Josephus shows that there was a Temple copy which was carried among the Temple spoils in the triumph of Vespasian. The peculiarities of the Hebrew text also prove that all our manuscripts are representatives of one standard copy. In the Jewish Canon Esther had not only a recognized, but also a distinguished, place. The statement of Junilius in the 6th century A.D. that the canonicity of Esther was doubted by some in his time has no bearing on the question. The high estimation of the book current among the ancient Jews is evident from its titles. It is usually headed "Megillath Esther" (the volume of Esther), and sometimes "Megillah" (the volume). Maimonides says that the wise men among the Jews affirm that the book was dictated by the Holy Spirit, and adds: "All the books of the Prophets, and all the Hagiographa shall cease in the days of the Messiah, except the volume of Esther; and, lo, that shall be as stable as the Pentateuch, and as the constitutions of the oral law which shall never cease."

2. Its Authorship:

By whom was the book written? This is a point in regard to which no help is afforded us either by the contents of the book or by any reliable tradition. Mordecai, whose claims have been strongly urged by some, is excluded by the closing words (Esther 10:3), which sum up his life work and the blessings of which he had been the recipient. The words imply that when the book was written, that great Israelite had passed away.

3. Its Date:

Light is thrown upon the date of the book by the closing references to Ahasuerus (Esther 10:2): "And all the acts of his power and of his might,. are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Media and Persia?" The entire history, therefore, of Xerxes was to be found in the state records when the book was written. In other words, Xerxes had passed away before it saw the light. That monarch was assassinated by Artabanus in 465 B.C. This gives us, say 460 B.C., as the highest possible date. The lowest possible date is the overthrow of the Persian empire by Alexander in 332 B.C.; for the royal records of the Median and Persian kings are plainly in existence and accessible, which they would not have been had the empire been overthrown. The book must have been written, therefore, some time within this interval of 128 years. There is another fact which narrows that interval. The initial waw shows that Esther was written after Nehemiah, that is, after 430 B.C. The interval is consequently reduced to 98 years; and, seeing that the Persian dominion was plainly in its pristine vigor when Esther was written, we cannot be far wrong if we regard its date as about 400 B.C.

4. Its Contents:

The book is characterized by supreme dramatic power. The scene is "Shushan the palace," that portion of the ancient Elamitic capital which formed the fortified residence of the Persian kings. The book opens with the description of a high festival. All the notabilities of the kingdom are present, together with their retainers, both small and great. To grace the occasion, Vashti is summoned to appear before the king's guests; and, to the dismay of the great assembly, the queen refuses to obey. A council is immediately summoned. Vashti is degraded; and a decree is issued that every man bear rule in his own house (Esther 1). To find a successor to Vashti, the fairest damsels in the empire are brought to Shushan; and Hadassah, the cousin and adopted daughter of Mordecai, is of the number. Esther (2) closes with a notice of two incidents:

(1) the coronation of Hadassah (now and henceforth named "Esther") as queen;

(2) Mordecai's discovery of a palace plot to assassinate the king.

Chapter 3 introduces another leading personage, Haman, the son of Hammedatha, whose seat the king had set "above all the princes that were with him." All the king's servants who are at the king's gates prostrate themselves before the powerful favorite. Mordecai, who is not a trained courtier but a God-fearing Jew, refrains. Though expostulated with, he will not conform. The matter is brought to Haman's notice for whose offended dignity Mordecai is too small a sacrifice. The whole Jewish people must perish. Lots are cast to find a lucky day for their extermination. The king's consent is obtained, and the royal decree is sent into all the provinces fixing the slaughter for the 13th day of the 12th month.

The publication of the decree is followed by universal mourning among the Jews (Esther 4). News of Mordecai's mourning is brought to Esther, who, through the messengers she sends to him, is informed of her own and her people's danger. She is urged to save herself and them. She eventually decides to seek the king s presence at the risk of her life. She presents herself (chapter 5) before the king and is graciously received. Here we breathe atmosphere of the place and time. Everything depends upon the decision of one will-the king's. Esther does not attempt too much at first: she invites the king and Haman to a banquet. Here the king asks Esther what her petition is, assuring her that it shall be granted. In reply she requests his and Haman's presence at a banquet the following day. Haman goes forth in high elation. On his way home he passes Mordecai, who "stood not up nor moved for him." Haman passes on filled with rage, and unbosoms himself to his wife and all his friends. They advise that a stake, fifty cubits high, be prepared for Mordecai's impalement; that on the morrow he obtain the royal permission for Mordecai's execution; and that he then proceed with a merry heart to banquet with the queen. The stake is made ready.

But (Esther 6) that night Xerxes cannot sleep. The chronicles of the kingdom are read before him. The reader has come to Mordecai's discovery of the plot, when the king asks what reward was given him. He is informed that the service had received no acknowledgment. It is now early morn, and Haman is waiting in the court for an audience to request Mordecai's life. He is summoned to the king's presence and asked what should be done to the man whom the king desires to honor. Believing that the king can be thinking only of him, he suggests that royal honors be paid him. He is appalled by the command to do so to Mordecai. Hurrying home from his lowly attendance upon the hated Jew, he has hardly time to tell the mournful story to his wife and friends when he is summoned to Esther's banquet. There, at the king's renewed request to be told her desire, she begs life for herself and for her people (Esther 7). The king asks in astonishment, who he is, and where he is, who dared to injure her and them. The reply is that Haman is the adversary. Xerxes, filled with indignation, rises from the banquet and passes into the palace garden. He returns and discovers that Haman, in the madness of his fear, has thrown himself on the queen's couch, begging for his life. That act seals his doom. He is led away to be impaled upon the very stake he had prepared for the Jew. The seal of the kingdom is transferred to Mordecai (Esther 8). Measures are immediately taken to avert the consequence of Haman's plot (Esther 9-10). The result is deliverance and honor for the Jews. These resolve that the festival of Purim should be instituted and be ever after observed by Jews and proselytes. The decision was confirmed by letters from Esther and Mordecai.

5. The Greek Additions:

The Septuagint, as we now have it, makes large additions to the original text. Jerome, keeping to the Hebrew text in his own translation, has added these at the end. They amount to nearly seven chapters. There is nothing in them to reward perusal. Their age has been assigned to 100 B.C., and their only value consists in the indication they afford of the antiquity of the book. That had been long enough in existence to perplex the Hebrew mind with the absence of the name of God and the omissions of any reference to Divine worship. Full amends are made in the additions.

6. The Attacks upon the Book:

The opponents of the Book of Esther may undoubtedly boast that Martin Luther headed the attack. In his Table-Talk he declared that he was so hostile "to the Book of Esther that I would it did not exist; for it Judaizes too much, and has in it a great deal of heathenish naughtiness." His remark in his reply to Erasmus shows that this was his deliberate judgment. Referring to Esther, he says that, though the Jews have it in their Canon, "it is more worthy than all" the apocryphal books "of being excluded from the Canon." That repudiation was founded, however, on no historical or critical grounds. It rested solely upon an entirely mistaken judgment as to the tone and the intention of the book. Luther's judgment has been carried farther by Ewald, who says: "We fall here as if from heaven to earth; and, looking among the new forms surrounding us, we seem to behold the Jews, or indeed the small men of the present day in general, acting just as they now do." Nothing of all this, however, touches the historicity of Esther.

The modern attack has quite another objective. Semler, who is its real fens et origo, believed Esther to be a work of pure imagination, and as establishing little more than the pride and arrogance of the Jews. DeWette says: "It violates all historical probability, and contains striking difficulties and many errors with regard to Persian manners, as well as just references to them." Dr. Driver modifies that judgment. "The writer," he says, "shows himself well informed on Persian manners and institutions; he does not commit anachronisms such as occur in Tobit or Judith; and the character of Xerxes as drawn by him is in agreement with history." The controversy shows, however, no sign of approaching settlement. Th. Noldeke (Encyclopaedia Biblica) is more violent than De Wette. "The story," he writes, "is in fact a tissue of improbabilities and impossibilities." We shall look first of all at the main objections urged by him and others and then at the recent confirmations of the historicity of Esther.

7. Some of the Objections:

(1) "There is something fantastic, but not altogether unskillful," says Noldeke, "in the touch whereby Mordecai and Haman are made to inherit an ancient feud, the former being a member of the family of King Saul, the latter a descendant of Agag, king of Amalek." It is surely unworthy of a scholar to make the book responsible for a Jewish fable. There is absolutely no mention in it of either King Saul or Agag, king of Amalek, and not the most distant allusion to any inherited feud. "Kish, a Benjamite" is certainly mentioned (Esther 2:5) as the great-grandfather of Mordecai; but if this was also the father of Saul, then the first of the Israelite kings was a sharer in the experiences of the Babylonian captivity, a conception which is certainly fantastic enough. One might ask also how an Amalekite came to be described as an Agagite; and how a childless king, who was cut in pieces, became the founder of a tribe. But any semblance of a foundation which that rabbinic conceit ever had was swept away years ago by Oppert's discovery of "Agag" in one of Sargon's inscriptions as the name of a district in the Persian empire. "Haman the son of Hammedatha the Agagite" means simply that Haman or his father had come from the district of Agag.

(2) The statement that Esther 2:5, 6 represents Mordecai as having been carried away with Jeconiah from Jerusalem, and as being therefore of an impossible age, is unworthy of notice. The relative "who" (2:6) refers to Kish, his great-grandfather.

(3) "Between the 7th and the 12th years of his reign, Xerxes' queen was Amestris, a superstitious and cruel woman (Herod. vii0.114; ix.112), who cannot be identified with Esther, and who leaves no place for Esther beside her" (Driver). Scaliger long ago identified Esther with Amestris, an identification which Prideaux rejected on account of the cruelty which Herodotus has attributed to that queen. Dr. Driver has failed to take full account of one thing-the striking fact that critics have leveled this very charge of cruelty against the heroine of our book. It is quite possible that Esther, moving in a world of merciless intrigue, may have had to take measures which would form a foundation for the tales recorded by the Greek historian.

(4) The aim of the book is said to be the glorification of the Jews. But, on the contrary, it is merely a record of their being saved from a skillfully planned extirpation.

(5) The description of the Jews (Esther 3:8) as "dispersed among the peoples in all the provinces of" the kingdom is said to be inapplicable to the Persian period. That argument is based upon an ignorance of the ancient world which investigation is daily correcting. We now know that before the time of Esther Jews were settled both in Eastern and in Southern Egypt, that is, in the extreme west of the Persian empire. In the troubles at the end of the 7th and of the 6th centuries B.C., multitudes must have been dispersed, and when, at the latter period, the ties of the fatherland were dissolved, Jewish migrations must have vastly increased.

(6) The Hebrew of the book is said to belong to a much later period than that of Xerxes. But it is admitted that it is earlier than the Hebrew of Chronicles; and recent discoveries have shown decisively that the book belongs to the pers period.

(7) The suggestion is made (Driver) "that the danger which threatened the Jews was a local one," and consequently, that the book, though possessed of a historical basis, is a romance. But against that are the facts that the observance of the feast has from the first been universal, and that it has not been observed more fully or more enthusiastically in any one place than in the others.

(8) There is no reference to it, it is urged, by Chronicles, Ezra or Ben Sira (Ecclesiasticus). But Chronicles ends with the proclamation of Cyrus, granting permission to the Jews to return and to rebuild the Temple. There is little to be wondered at that it contains no reference to events which happened 60 years afterward. In Ezra, which certainly covers the period of Esther, reference to the events with which she was connected is excluded by the plan of the work. It gives the history of the return, the first part under Zerubbabel in 536 B.C., the second under Ezra himself, 458 B.C. The events in Esther (which were embraced within a period of a few months) fell in the interval and were connected with neither the first return nor the second. Here again the objector is singularly oblivious of the purpose of the book to which he refers. There is quite as little force in the citation of Ecclesiasticus. In dealing with this time Ben Sira's eye is upon Jerusalem. He magnifies Zerubbabel, "Jesus the son of Josedek," and Nehemiah (49:11-13). Even Ezra, to whom Jerusalem and the new Jewish state owed so much, finds no mention. Why, then, should Esther and Mordecai be named who seem to have had no part whatever in rebuilding the sacred city?

(9) The book is said to display ignorance of the Persian empire in the statement that it was divided into 127 provinces, whereas Herodotus tells us that it was partitioned into 20 satrapies. But there was no such finality in the number, even of these great divisions of the empire. Darius in his Behistun inscriptions gives the number as 21, afterward as 23, and in a third enumeration as 29. Herodotus himself, quoting from a document of the time of Xerxes, shows that there were then about 60 nations under the dominion of Persia. The objector has also omitted to notice that the medhinah ("province") mentioned in Esther (1:1) is not a satrapy but a subdivision of it. Judea is called a medhinah in Ezra 2:1, and that was only a small portion of the 5th satrapy, that, namely, of Syria. But the time is past for objections of this character. Recent discoveries have proved the marvelous accuracy of the book. "We find in the Book of Esther," says Lenormant (Ancient History of the East, II, 113), "a most animated picture of the court of the Persian kings, which enables us, better than anything contained in the classical writers, to penetrate the internal life and the details of the organization of the central government established by Darius."

8. Confirmations of the Book:

These discoveries have removed the discussion to quite another plane-or rather they have ended it. Since Grotefend in 1802 read the name of Xerxes in a Persian inscription and found it to be, letter for letter, the Ahasuerus of Eat, research has heaped up confirmation of the historical character of the book. It has proved, to begin with that the late date suggested for the book cannot be maintained. The language belongs to the time of the Persian dominion. It is marked by the presence of old Persian words, the knowledge of which had passed away by the 2nd century B.C., and has been recovered only through the decipherment of the Persian monuments. The Septuagint translators were unacquainted with them, and consequently made blunders which have been repeated in our own the King James Version and in other translations. We read (Esther 1:5, 6 the King James Version) that "in the court of the garden of the king's palace," "were white, green, and blue hangings, fastened with cords of fine linen and purple," etc. As seen in the ruins of Persepolis, a marked feature in the Persian palace of the period was a large space occupied by pillars which were covered with awnings. It may be noted in passing that these were situated, as the book says, in the court of the palace garden. But our knowledge of the recovered Persian compels us now to read: "where was an awning of fine white cotton and violet, fastened with cords of fine white linen and purple." White and blue (or violet) were the royal Persian colors. In accord with this we are told that Mordecai (Esther 8:15) "went forth from the presence of the king in royal apparel of blue and white." The highly organized postal system, the king's scribes, the keeping of the chronicles of the kingdom, the rigid and elaborate court customs, are all characteristic of the Persia of the period. We are told of the decree obtained by Haman that "in the name of King Ahasuerus was it written, and sealed with the king's ring" (or signet). It was not signed but sealed. That was the Persian custom. The seal of Darius, Xerxes' father, has been found, and is now in the British Museum. It bears the figure of the king shooting arrows at a lion, and is accompanied by an inscription in Persian, Susian and Assyrian: "I, Darius, Great King." The identification of Ahasuerus, made by Grotefend and which subsequent discoveries amply confirmed, placed the book in an entirely new light. As soon as that identification was assured, previous objections were changed into confirmations. In the alleged extravagances of the monarch, scholars saw then the Xerxes of history. The gathering of the nobles of the empire in "the third year of his reign" (Esther 1:3) was plainly the historical assembly in which the Grecian campaign was discussed; and "the seventh year," in which Esther was made queen, was that of his return from Greece. The book implies that Susa was the residence of the Persian kings, and this was so. The proper form of the name as shown by the inscriptions was "Shushan"; "Shushan the Palace" indicates that there were two Susas, which was the fact, and birah ("palace") is a Persian word meaning fortress. The surprisingly rigid etiquette of the palace, to which we have referred, and the danger of entering unbidden the presence of the king have been urged as proof that the book is a romance. The contrary, however, is the truth. "The palace among the Persians," says Lenormant, "was quite inaccessible to the multitude. A most rigid etiquette guarded all access to the king, and made it very difficult to approach him.. He who entered the presence of the king, without having previously obtained permission, was punished with death" (Ancient History of the East, II, 113-14; compare Herodotus i.99). But a further, and peculiarly conclusive, testimony to the historical character of the book is afforded by the recovery of the palace of Xerxes and Esther. An inscription of Artaxerxes Mnemon found at Susa tells us that it was destroyed by fire in the days of Artaxerxes Longimanus, the son and successor of Xerxes. Within some 30 years, therefore, from the time of Esther, that palace passed from the knowledge of men. Nevertheless, the references in the book are in perfect accord with the plan of the great structure as laid bare by the recent French excavations. We read (Esther 4) that Mordecai, clad in sackcloth, walked in "the broad palace of the city, which was before the king's gate." The ruins show that the House of the Women was on the East side of the palace next to the city, and that a gate led from it into "the street of the city." In Esther 5:1, we read that Esther "stood in the inner court of the king's house, over against the king's house." "The king," we also read, "sat upon his royal throne in the royal house, over against the entrance of the house," and that from the throne he "saw Esther the queen standing in the court." Every detail is exact. A corridor led from the House of the Women to the inner court; and at the side of the court opposite to the corridor was the hall, or throne-room of the palace. Exactly in the center of the farther wall the throne was placed and from that lofty seat the king, overlooking an intervening screen, saw the queen waiting for an audience. Other details, such as that of the king's passing from the queen's banqueting-house into the garden, show a similarly exact acquaintance with the palace as it then was. That is a confirmation the force of which it is hard to overestimate. It shows that the writer was well informed and that his work is characterized by minute exactitude.

The utter absence of the Divine name in Esther has formed a difficulty even where it has not been urged as an objection. But that is plainly part of some Divine design. The same silence is strictly maintained throughout in regard to prayer, praise and every approach toward God. That silence was an offense to the early Jews; for, in the Septuagint additions to the book, there is profuse acknowledgment of God both in prayer and in praise. But it must have struck the Jews of the time and the official custodians of the canonical books quite as painfully; and we can only explain the admission of Esther by the latter on the ground that there was overwhelming evidence of its Divine origin and authority. Can this rigid suppression be explained? In the original arrangement of the Old Testament canonical books (the present Hebrew arrangement is post-Christian), Esther is joined to Nehemiah. In 1895 I made a suggestion which I still think worthy of consideration: More than 60 years had passed since Cyrus had given the Jews permission to return. The vast majority of the people remained, nevertheless, where they were. Some, like Nehemiah, were restrained by official and other ties. The rest were indifferent or declined to make the necessary sacrifices of property and of rest. With such as these last the history of God's work in the earth can never be associated. In His providence He will watch over and deliver them: but their names and His will not be bound together in the record of the labor and the waiting for the earth's salvation.

John Urquhart

ESTHER, THE REST OF

Contents

Introductory

1. Name 2. Contents 3. Original Language 4. Versions 5. Date

LITERATURE

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Introductory.

The Book of Esther in the oldest manuscripts of the Septuagint (BAN, etc.) contains 107 verses more than in the Hebrew Bible. These additions are scattered throughout the book where they were originally inserted in order to supply the religious element apparently lacking in the Hebrew text. In Jerome's version and in the Vulgate, which is based on it, the longest and most important of these additions are taken out of their context and put together at the end of the canonical book, thus making them to a large extent unintelligible. In English, Welsh and other Protestant versions of the Scriptures the whole of the additions appear in the Apocrypha.

1. Name:

In the English Versions of the Bible the full title is "The Rest of the Chapters of the Book of Esther, which are found neither in the Hebrew, nor in the Chaldee." Since in the Septuagint, including the editions by Fritzsche, Tischendorf and Swete, these chapters appear in their original context, they bear no separate title. The same is true of Brereton's English translation of the Septuagint; but in Thompson's translation the whole of the Apocrypha is omitted, so that it is not strictly a translation of the whole Septuagint.

2. Contents:

In Swete's edition of the Septuagint the interpretations constituting "the Rest of Esther" (sometimes given as "Additions to Esther") are designated by the capital letters of the alphabet, and in the following enumeration this will be followed. The several places in the Greek Bible are indicated in each case.

A (Latin, English, Additions to Esther 11:2; 12:6): Mordecai's dream; how he came to honor. Precedes Esther 1:1.

B (Latin, English, Additions to Esther 13:1-7): Letter of Artaxerxes. Follows Esther 3:13.

C (Latin, English, Additions to Esther 13:8-14:19): The prayers of Mordecai and Esther. Follows Esther 4:17.

D (Latin, Additions to Esther 15:4-19; English, 16:1-16): Esther visits the king and wins his favor. Follows C, preceding immediately Esther 5.

E (Latin, English, Additions to Esther 16:1-24): Another letter of Artaxerxes. Follows Esther 8:12. F (Latin, English, Additions to Esther 10:4-11): Epilogue describing the origin of the Feast Purim. Follows Esther 10:3.

But besides the lengthy interpolations noticed above there are also in the Septuagint small additions omitted from the Latin and therefore from the English, Welsh, etc., Apocrypha. These short additions are nearly all explanatory glosses. In the Century Bible (Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther) the exact places where the insertions occur in the Septuagint are indicated and described in the notes dealing with the relevant passages of the canonical text. With the help thus given any English reader is able to read the additions in their original setting. Unless they are read in this way they are pointless and even in most cases senseless.

3. Original Language:

All scholars agree that "The Rest of Esther" was written originally in Greek Both external and internal evidence bears this out. But the Greek text has come down to us in two recensions which differ considerably.

(1) The commonly received text supported by the manuscripts B, A, N, and by Josephus (Ant., XI, i).

(2) A revision of (1) contained in the manuscripts 19, 93a and 108b. In the last two manuscripts both recensions occur. This revised text has been ascribed by many recent scholars (Lagarde, Schurer, R. H. Charles) to Lucian. In his Libr. Vet. Test. Canon. Graece, Pars Prior, 1833 (all published), Lagarde gives on parallel pages both recensions with critical notes on both.

4. Versions:

The two Greek texts are also given by Fritzsche (1871) and Swete (1891) in their editions of the Septuagint, and also by Scholz in his German Commentary on the Book of Esther (1892). For the ancient versions see "Esther Versions."

5. Date:

Practically all modern scholars agree in holding that "The Rest of Esther" is some decades later than the canonical book. In his commentary on Esther (Century Bible) the present writer has given reasons for dating the canonical Esther about 130 B.C. One could not go far astray in fixing the date of the original Greek of the Additions to Esther at about 100 B.C. It is evident that we owe these interpolations to a Jewish zealot who wished to give the Book of Esther a religious character. In his later years John Hyrcanus (135-103 B.C.) identified himself with the Sadducean or rationalistic party, thus breaking with the Pharisee or orthodox party to which the Maccabeans had hitherto belonged. Perhaps we owe these additions to the zeal aroused among orthodox Jews by the rationalizing temper prevailing in court circles. R. H. Charles (Encyclopedia Brit, XI, 797b) favors a date during the early (?) Maccabean period; but this would give the Ad Esther an earlier date than can be ascribed to the canonical Esther.

LITERATURE.

See the literature cited above, and in addition note the following: Fritzsche, Exegetisches Handbuch zu den Apokryphen (1851), 67-108; Schurer, History of the Jewish People, II, iii, 181 (Ger. edition 4, III, 449); Ryssel (in Kautzsch, Apocrypha, 193); Swete, Introduction to the Old Testament in Greek, 257 if; the articles in the principal Bible Dictionaries, including Jewish Encyclopedia and Encyclopedia Britannica (11th edition).

See also under ESTHER.

T. Witton Davies

Strong's Hebrew
1919. Hadassah -- "myrtle," Esther's Jewish name
... 1918, 1919. Hadassah. 1920 . "myrtle," Esther's Jewish name. Transliteration:
Hadassah Phonetic Spelling: (had-as-saw') Short Definition: Hadassah. ...
/hebrew/1919.htm - 6k

4782. Mordekay -- a companion of Zerubbabel, also a cousin of ...
... Mordekay. 4783 . a companion of Zerubbabel, also a cousin of Esther. Transliteration:
Mordekay Phonetic Spelling: (mor-dek-ah'-ee) Short Definition: Mordecai. ...
/hebrew/4782.htm - 6k

635. Ester -- "star," Ahasuerus' queen who delivered Isr.
... Transliteration: Ester Phonetic Spelling: (es-tare') Short Definition:
Esther. ... NASB Word Usage Esther (52), Esther's (3). Esther. ...
/hebrew/635.htm - 6k

5019. Nebukadnetstsar -- "Nebo, protect the boundary," a Bab. king
... Or Nbukadneotstsar (2 Kings 24:1, 2 Kings 24:10) {neb-oo-kad-nets-tsar'}; or
Nbuwkadnetstsar (Esther 2:6; Daniel 1:18) {neb-oo-kad-nets-tsar'}; or ...
/hebrew/5019.htm - 6k

Library

Esther
... ESTHER. The spirit of the book of Esther is anything but attractive. It is
never quoted or referred to by Jesus or His apostles, and ...
//christianbookshelf.org/mcfadyen/introduction to the old testament/esther.htm

Mordecai and Esther
... THE BOOK OF ESTHER MORDECAI AND ESTHER. ... The verse which I have selected for my text
is spoken by Mordecai to Esther, when urging her to her perilous patriotism. ...
/.../maclaren/expositions of holy scripture g/mordecai and esther.htm

Esther Before the King.
... ESTHER BEFORE THE KING. Ahasuerus reigned over the vast empire of Persia, and
Esther, the adopted daughter of a Jew named Mordecai, was Queen. ...
/.../anonymous/mother stories from the old testament/esther before the king.htm

Esther's Venture
... THE BOOK OF ESTHER ESTHER'S VENTURE. 'Again Esther spake unto Hatach, and gave him
commandment unto Mordecai: 11. ... And they told to Mordecai Esther's words.13. ...
/.../maclaren/expositions of holy scripture g/esthers venture.htm

Esther, the Queen.
... THE OLD TESTAMENT CHAPTER XXXIV. ESTHER, THE QUEEN. ... He had an adopted daughter named
Hadassah. This was her true name, although the Persians called her Esther. ...
/.../lathbury/childs story of the bible/chapter xxxiv esther the queen.htm

In the Days of Queen Esther
... After the Exile Chapter 49 In the Days of Queen Esther. Under the favor
shown them by Cyrus, nearly fifty thousand of the children ...
/.../white/the story of prophets and kings/chapter 49 in the days.htm

Esther in Danger of Her Life Followed the Grace of virtue...
... Esther in danger of her life followed the grace of virtue´┐Ż ... 123. Why did Queen Esther
[749] expose herself to death and not fear the wrath of a fierce king? ...
/.../ambrose/works and letters of st ambrose/chapter xxi esther in danger.htm

Esther.
... Treatises. Esther. To Paula and Eustochium, early in 404. Merely assures
them that he is acting as a faithful translator, adding ...
//christianbookshelf.org/jerome/the principal works of st jerome/esther.htm

Concerning Esther and Mordecai and Haman; and How in the Reign of ...
... CHAPTER 6. Concerning Esther And Mordecai And Haman; And How In The Reign Of Artaxerxes
The Whole Nation Of The Jews Was In Danger Of Perishing. ...
/.../josephus/the antiquities of the jews/chapter 6 concerning esther and.htm

Hebrew Captives; Or, Mordecai and Esther.
... HEBREW CAPTIVES; OR, MORDECAI AND ESTHER. The next pictured scene is in the Court
of Persia. ... Among the captives there was Esther, a Hebrew maiden. ...
/.../headley/half hours in bible lands volume 2/hebrew captives or mordecai and.htm

Hitchcock's Bible Names Dictionary
Esther

secret; hidden

Smith's Bible Dictionary
Esther

(a star), the Persian name of HADASSAH (myrtle), daughter of Abihail, the son of Shimei, the son of Kish, a Benjamite. Esther was a beautiful Jewish maiden. She was an orphan, and had been brought up by her cousin Mordecai, who had an office in the household of Ahasuerus king of Persia --supposed to be the Xerxes of history-- and dwelt at "Shushan the palace." When Vashti was dismissed from being queen, the king chose Esther to the place on account of her beauty, not knowing her race or parentage; and on the representation of Haman the Agagite that the Jews scattered through his empire were pernicious race, he gave him full power and authority to kill them all. The means taken by Esther to avert this great calamity from her people and her kindred are fully related in the book of Esther. The Jews still commemorate this deliverance in the yearly festival Purim, on the 14th and 15th of Adar (February, March). History is wholly silent about both Vashti and Esther.

ATS Bible Dictionary
Esther

A Persian name given to Hadassah, a daughter of Abihail, of the tribe of Benjamin. The family had not returned to Judea after the permission given by Cyrus, and she was born probably beyond the Tigris, and nearly five hundred years before Christ. Her parents being dead, Mordecai, her father's brother, took care of her education. After Ahasuerus had discovered Vashti, search was made throughout Persia for the most beautiful women, and Esther was one selected. She found favor in the eyes of the king, and he married her with royal magnificence, bestowing largesses and remissions of tribute on his people. She was thus in a position which enabled her to do a signal favor to her people, then very numerous in Persia. Their deliverance is still celebrated by the Jews in the yearly festival called Purim, which was instituted at that time. The husband of Esther is supposed to have been the Xerxes of secular history.

Easton's Bible Dictionary
The queen of Ahasuerus, and heroine of the book that bears her name. She was a Jewess named Hadas'sah (the myrtle), but when she entered the royal harem she received the name by which she henceforth became known (Esther 2:7). It is a Syro-Arabian modification of the Persian word satarah, which means a star. She was the daughter of Abihail, a Benjamite. Her family did not avail themselves of the permission granted by Cyrus to the exiles to return to Jerusalem; and she resided with her cousin Mordecai, who held some office in the household of the Persian king at "Shushan in the palace." Ahasuerus having divorced Vashti, chose Esther to be his wife. Soon after this he gave Haman the Agagite, his prime minister, power and authority to kill and extirpate all the Jews throughout the Persian empire. By the interposition of Esther this terrible catastrophe was averted. Haman was hanged on the gallows he had intended for Mordecai (Esther 7); and the Jews established an annual feast, the feast of Purim (q.v.), in memory of their wonderful deliverance. This took place about fifty-two years after the Return, the year of the great battles of Plataea and Mycale (B.C. 479).

Esther appears in the Bible as a "woman of deep piety, faith, courage, patriotism, and caution, combined with resolution; a dutiful daughter to her adopted father, docile and obedient to his counsels, and anxious to share the king's favour with him for the good of the Jewish people. There must have been a singular grace and charm in her aspect and manners, since `she obtained favour in the sight of all them that looked upon her' (Esther 2:15). That she was raised up as an instrument in the hand of God to avert the destruction of the Jewish people, and to afford them protection and forward their wealth and peace in their captivity, is also manifest from the Scripture account."

Esther, Book of

The authorship of this book is unknown. It must have been obviously written after the death of Ahasuerus (the Xerxes of the Greeks), which took place B.C. 465. The minute and particular account also given of many historical details makes it probable that the writer was contemporary with Mordecai and Esther. Hence we may conclude that the book was written probably about B.C. 444-434, and that the author was one of the Jews of the dispersion.

This book is more purely historical than any other book of Scripture; and it has this remarkable peculiarity that the name of God does not occur in it from first to last in any form. It has, however, been well observed that "though the name of God be not in it, his finger Isaiah" The book wonderfully exhibits the providential government of God.

Thesaurus
Esther (48 Occurrences)
... She was a Jewess named Hadas'sah (the myrtle), but when she entered the royal harem
she received the name by which she henceforth became known (Esther 2:7). It ...
/e/esther.htm - 58k

Esther's (4 Occurrences)
... Multi-Version Concordance Esther's (4 Occurrences). ...Esther 4:4 Esther's maidens and
her eunuchs came and told her this, and the queen was exceedingly grieved. ...
/e/esther's.htm - 7k

Susa (20 Occurrences)
... Int. Standard Bible Encyclopedia SUSA. su'-sa, soo'-sa (Additions to Esther 11:3).
See SHUSHAN. Multi-Version Concordance Susa (20 Occurrences). ...
/s/susa.htm - 13k

Vashti (10 Occurrences)
... was deposed from her royal dignity because she refused to obey the king when he
desired her to appear in the banqueting hall of Shushan the palace (Esther 1:10 ...
/v/vashti.htm - 12k

Xerxes (24 Occurrences)
...Esther 1:1 Now it happened in the days of Ahasuerus (this is Ahasuerus who reigned
from India even to Ethiopia, over one hundred twenty-seven provinces), (See ...
/x/xerxes.htm - 14k

Ahasu-e'rus (30 Occurrences)
...Esther 1:1 Now it came to pass in the days of Ahasuerus--this is Ahasuerus who reigned,
from India even unto Ethiopia, over a hundred and seven and twenty ...
/a/ahasu-e'rus.htm - 15k

Edict (22 Occurrences)
...Esther 1:19 If to the king 'it be' good, there goeth forth a royal word from before
him, and it is written with the laws of Persia and Media, and doth not pass ...
/e/edict.htm - 14k

Eunuchs (33 Occurrences)
...Esther 1:10 On the seventh day, when the heart of the king was merry with wine,
he commanded Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, and Abagtha, Zethar, and Carcass ...
/e/eunuchs.htm - 17k

Citadel (20 Occurrences)
... (DBY NIV). Esther 1:2 that in those days, when the King Ahasuerus sat on the throne
of his kingdom, which was in Shushan the palace, (See NAS NIV). ...
/c/citadel.htm - 13k

Chamberlains (17 Occurrences)
...Esther 1:10 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 ...
/c/chamberlains.htm - 12k

Bible Concordance
Esther (48 Occurrences)

2 Chronicles 29:5 and said to them, Hear me, you Levites; now sanctify yourselves, and sanctify the house of Yahweh, the God of your fathers, and carry forth the filthiness out of the holy place. Esther
(WEB)

Esther 2:7 He brought up Hadassah, that is, Esther, his uncle's daughter; for she had neither father nor mother. The maiden was fair and beautiful; and when her father and mother were dead, Mordecai took her for his own daughter.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 2:8 So it happened, when the king's commandment and his decree was heard, and when many maidens were gathered together to the citadel of Susa, to the custody of Hegai, that Esther was taken into the king's house, to the custody of Hegai, keeper of the women.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 2:10 Esther had not made known her people nor her relatives, because Mordecai had instructed her that she should not make it known.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 2:11 Mordecai walked every day in front of the court of the women's house, to find out how Esther did, and what would become of her.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 2:15 Now when the turn of Esther, the daughter of Abihail the uncle of Mordecai, who had taken her for his daughter, came to go in to the king, she required nothing but what Hegai the king's eunuch, the keeper of the women, advised. Esther obtained favor in the sight of all those who looked at her.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 2:16 So Esther was taken to King Ahasuerus into his royal house in the tenth month, which is the month Tebeth, in the seventh year of his reign.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)

Esther 2:17 The king loved Esther more than all the women, and she obtained favor and kindness in his sight more than all the virgins; so that he set the royal crown on her head, and made her queen instead of Vashti.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 2:18 Then the king made a great feast for all his princes and his servants, even Esther's feast; and he proclaimed a holiday in the provinces, and gave gifts according to the king's bounty.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 2:20 Esther had not yet made known her relatives nor her people, as Mordecai had commanded her; for Esther obeyed Mordecai, like she did when she was brought up by him.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 2:22 This thing became known to Mordecai, who informed Esther the queen; and Esther informed the king in Mordecai's name.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 4:4 Esther's maidens and her eunuchs came and told her this, and the queen was exceedingly grieved. She sent clothing to Mordecai, to replace his sackcloth; but he didn't receive it.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 4:5 Then Esther called for Hathach, one of the king's eunuchs, whom he had appointed to attend her, and commanded him to go to Mordecai, to find out what this was, and why it was.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 4:8 He also gave him the copy of the writing of the decree that was given out in Shushan to destroy them, to show it to Esther, and to declare it to her, and to urge her to go in to the king, to make supplication to him, and to make request before him, for her people.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 4:9 Hathach came and told Esther the words of Mordecai.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 4:10 Then Esther spoke to Hathach, and gave him a message to Mordecai:
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)

Esther 4:12 They told to Mordecai Esther's words.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 4:13 Then Mordecai asked them return answer to Esther, "Don't think to yourself that you will escape in the king's house any more than all the Jews.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)

Esther 4:15 Then Esther asked them to answer Mordecai,
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 4:17 So Mordecai went his way, and did according to all that Esther had commanded him.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 5:1 Now it happened on the third day that Esther put on her royal clothing, and stood in the inner court of the king's house, next to the king's house. The king sat on his royal throne in the royal house, next to the entrance of the house.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 5:2 When the king saw Esther the queen standing in the court, she obtained favor in his sight; and the king held out to Esther the golden scepter that was in his hand. So Esther came near, and touched the top of the scepter.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 5:3 Then the king asked her, "What would you like, queen Esther? What is your request? It shall be given you even to the half of the kingdom."
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 5:4 Esther said, "If it seems good to the king, let the king and Haman come today to the banquet that I have prepared for him."
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 5:5 Then the king said, "Bring Haman quickly, so that it may be done as Esther has said." So the king and Haman came to the banquet that Esther had prepared.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 5:6 The king said to Esther at the banquet of wine, "What is your petition? It shall be granted you. What is your request? Even to the half of the kingdom it shall be performed."
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 5:7 Then Esther answered and said, "My petition and my request is this.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 5:12 Haman also said, "Yes, Esther the queen let no man come in with the king to the banquet that she had prepared but myself; and tomorrow I am also invited by her together with the king.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 6:14 While they were yet talking with him, the king's eunuchs came, and hurried to bring Haman to the banquet that Esther had prepared.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 7:1 So the king and Haman came to banquet with Esther the queen.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 7:2 The king said again to Esther on the second day at the banquet of wine, "What is your petition, queen Esther? It shall be granted you. What is your request? Even to the half of the kingdom it shall be performed."
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 7:3 Then Esther the queen answered, "If I have found favor in your sight, O king, and if it please the king, let my life be given me at my petition, and my people at my request.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 7:5 Then King Ahasuerus said to Esther the queen, "Who is he, and where is he who dared presume in his heart to do so?"
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 7:6 Esther said, "An adversary and an enemy, even this wicked Haman!" Then Haman was afraid before the king and the queen.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 7:7 The king arose in his wrath from the banquet of wine and went into the palace garden. Haman stood up to make request for his life to Esther the queen; for he saw that there was evil determined against him by the king.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 7:8 Then the king returned out of the palace garden into the place of the banquet of wine; and Haman had fallen on the couch where Esther was. Then the king said, "Will he even assault the queen in front of me in the house?" As the word went out of the king's mouth, they covered Haman's face.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 8:1 On that day, King Ahasuerus gave the house of Haman, the Jews' enemy, to Esther the queen. Mordecai came before the king; for Esther had told what he was to her.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 8:2 The king took off his ring, which he had taken from Haman, and gave it to Mordecai. Esther set Mordecai over the house of Haman.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 8:3 Esther spoke yet again before the king, and fell down at his feet, and begged him with tears to put away the mischief of Haman the Agagite, and his device that he had devised against the Jews.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 8:4 Then the king held out to Esther the golden scepter. So Esther arose, and stood before the king.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 8:5 And she said: 'If it please the king, and if I have found favour in his sight, and the thing seem right before the king, and I be pleasing in his eyes, let it be written to reverse the letters devised by Haman the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, which he wrote to destroy the Jews that are in all the king's provinces;
(See RSV)

Esther 8:7 Then King Ahasuerus said to Esther the queen and to Mordecai the Jew, "See, I have given Esther the house of Haman, and him they have hanged on the gallows, because he laid his hand on the Jews.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 9:12 The king said to Esther the queen, "The Jews have slain and destroyed five hundred men in the citadel of Susa, including the ten sons of Haman; what then have they done in the rest of the king's provinces! Now what is your petition? It shall be granted you. What is your further request? It shall be done."
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 9:13 Then Esther said, "If it pleases the king, let it be granted to the Jews who are in Shushan to do tomorrow also according to this day's decree, and let Haman's ten sons be hanged on the gallows."
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 9:25 But when Esther came before the king, he commanded by letters that his wicked device, which he devised against the Jews, should return upon his own head, and that he and his sons should be hanged on the gallows.
(KJV DBY WBS RSV)

Esther 9:29 Then Esther the queen, the daughter of Abihail, and Mordecai the Jew, wrote with all authority to confirm this second letter of Purim.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 9:31 to confirm these days of Purim in their appointed times, as Mordecai the Jew and Esther the queen had decreed, and as they had imposed upon themselves and their descendants, in the matter of the fastings and their cry.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Esther 9:32 The commandment of Esther confirmed these matters of Purim; and it was written in the book.
(WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)

Subtopics

Esther

Esther: Chosen Queen

Esther: Fasts on Account of the Decree to Destroy the Israelites

Esther: Niece of Mordecai

Esther: Tells the King of the Plot Against his Life

Related Terms

Esther's (4 Occurrences)

Susa (20 Occurrences)

Vashti (10 Occurrences)

Xerxes (24 Occurrences)

Ahasu-e'rus (30 Occurrences)

Edict (22 Occurrences)

Eunuchs (33 Occurrences)

Citadel (20 Occurrences)

Chamberlains (17 Occurrences)

Ahasuerus (28 Occurrences)

Rest (831 Occurrences)

Adar (10 Occurrences)

Sceptre (20 Occurrences)

Scepter (28 Occurrences)

Abihail (6 Occurrences)

Mor'decai (51 Occurrences)

Castle (26 Occurrences)

Petition (33 Occurrences)

Purim (5 Occurrences)

Published (18 Occurrences)

Pur (3 Occurrences)

Maidens (40 Occurrences)

Provinces (40 Occurrences)

Capital (29 Occurrences)

Pleases (51 Occurrences)

Thirteenth (12 Occurrences)

Shushan (19 Occurrences)

Estate (40 Occurrences)

Mordecai's (6 Occurrences)

Agagite (5 Occurrences)

Decree (82 Occurrences)

Aman (1 Occurrence)

Extended (40 Occurrences)

Chamberlain (14 Occurrences)

Dinner (23 Occurrences)

Related (45 Occurrences)

Mordecai (52 Occurrences)

Virgins (33 Occurrences)

Plot (53 Occurrences)

Devised (35 Occurrences)

Adopted (10 Occurrences)

Signet (21 Occurrences)

Marble (5 Occurrences)

Media (14 Occurrences)

Feasting (39 Occurrences)

Sackcloth (47 Occurrences)

Fourteenth (25 Occurrences)

Medes (15 Occurrences)

Delighted (56 Occurrences)

Device (17 Occurrences)

Background (2 Occurrences)

Couriers (16 Occurrences)

Assault (8 Occurrences)

Ahasbai (1 Occurrence)

Ab'ihail (6 Occurrences)

Twelfth (20 Occurrences)

Ring (33 Occurrences)

Apparel (38 Occurrences)

Custody (27 Occurrences)

Maiden (40 Occurrences)

Colors (12 Occurrences)

Kindred (41 Occurrences)

Maids (28 Occurrences)

Banquet (58 Occurrences)

Persia (30 Occurrences)

Rage (43 Occurrences)

Fasts (3 Occurrences)

Reply (61 Occurrences)

Royalty (7 Occurrences)

Adoption (5 Occurrences)

Avail (15 Occurrences)

Runners (21 Occurrences)

Bade (27 Occurrences)

Troubling (51 Occurrences)

Tip (17 Occurrences)

Presents (38 Occurrences)

Copy (18 Occurrences)

Color (18 Occurrences)

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