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Esther 1

The Banquets of the King

1 Now it took place in the days of 1Ahasuerus, the Ahasuerus who reigned 2from India to aEthiopia over * * provinces,
2 in those days as King Ahasuerus 3sat on his royal throne which was at the citadel in 4Susa,
3 in the third year of his reign 5he gave a banquet for all his princes and attendants, the army officers of Persia and Media, the nobles and the princes of his provinces being in his presence.
4 bAnd he displayed the riches of his royal glory and the splendor of his great majesty for many days, 180 * days.
5 When these days were completed, the king gave a banquet lasting seven days for all the people who were present at the citadel in Susa, from the greatest to the least, in the court of 6the garden of the king's palace.
7 Drinks were served in golden vessels of various kinds, and the royal wine was plentiful 8according to the king's cbounty.
8 The drinking was done according to the law, there was no compulsion, for so the king had given orders to each official of his household that he should do according to the desires of each person.
9 Queen Vashti also gave a banquet for the women in the dpalace which belonged to King Ahasuerus.

Queen Vashti's Refusal

10 On the seventh day, when the heart of the king was 9merry with wine, he commanded Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, Abagtha, Zethar and Carkas, the seven eunuchs who served in the presence of King Ahasuerus,
11 to bring Queen Vashti before the king with her royal 10crown in order to display her beauty to the people and the princes, for she was beautiful.
12 But Queen Vashti refused to come at the king's command delivered by the eunuchs. Then the king became very angry and his wrath burned within him.
13 Then the king said to 11the wise men 12who understood the times -for it was the custom of the king so to speak before all who knew law and justice
14 and were close to him: Carshena, Shethar, Admatha, Tarshish, Meres, Marsena and Memucan, the seven princes of Persia and Media 13who ehad access to the king's presence and sat in the first place in the kingdom -
15 "According to law, what is to be done with Queen Vashti, because * she did not fobey the command of King Ahasuerus delivered by the eunuchs?"
16 In the presence of the king and the princes, Memucan said, "Queen Vashti has wronged not only the king but also all the princes and all the peoples who are in all the provinces of King Ahasuerus.
17 "For the queen's conduct will gbecome known to all the women causing them hto look with contempt on their husbands by saying, 'King Ahasuerus commanded Queen Vashti to be brought in to his presence, but she did not come.'
18 "This day the ladies of Persia and Media who have heard of the queen's conduct will speak in the same way to all the king's princes, and there will be plenty of contempt and anger.
19 "If it pleases the king, let a royal iedict be issued by him and let it be written in the laws of Persia and Media so 14that it cannot jbe repealed, that Vashti may no longer come into the presence of King Ahasuerus, and let the king give her royal position to kanother who is more worthy than she.
20 "When the king's edict which he will make is heard throughout all his kingdom, lgreat as it is, then 15all women will give honor to their husbands, great and small."
21 This word pleased * the king and the princes, and the king did mas Memucan proposed.
22 So he sent letters to all the king's provinces, 16to each province according to its script and to every people according to their language, that every man should 17be the master in his own house and the one who speaks in the language of his own people.
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