1 On that day did King Ahasuerus give the house of Haman, the Jews' enemy, unto Esther the queen. And Mordecai came before the king, for Esther had told what he was unto her.
2 And the king took off his ring, which he had taken from Haman, and gave it unto Mordecai. And Esther set Mordecai over the house of Haman.
3 And Esther spoke yet again before the king, and fell down at his feet and besought him with tears to put away the wickedness of Haman the Agagite and his plot that he had devised against the Jews.
4 Then the king held out the golden scepter toward Esther. So Esther arose and stood before the king,
5 and said, "If it please the king and if I have found favor in his sight, and the thing seem right before the king and I am 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 who are in all the king's provinces.
6 For how can I endure to see the evil that shall come unto my people? Or how can I endure to see the destruction of my kindred?"
7 Then King Ahasuerus said unto Esther the queen and to Mordecai the Jew, "Behold, I have given Esther the house of Haman, and him they have hanged upon the gallows because he laid his hand upon the Jews.
8 Write ye also for the Jews, as it pleaseth you, in the king's name, and seal it with the king's ring; for the writing which is written in the king's name and sealed with the king's ring may no man reverse."
9 Then were the king's scribes called at that time in the third month (that is, the month of Sivan), on the three and twentieth day thereof; and it was written according to all that Mordecai commanded, unto the Jews and to the lieutenants, and the deputies and rulers of the provinces which are from India unto Ethiopia, a hundred twenty and seven provinces, unto every province according to the writing thereof and unto every people in their language, and to the Jews according to their writing and according to their language.
10 And he wrote in King Ahasuerus' name and sealed it with the king's ring, and sent letters by posts on horseback, and riders on mules, camels, and young dromedaries.
11 Therein the king granted the Jews who were in every city to gather themselves together and to stand for their life" to destroy, to slay, and to cause to perish all the power of the people and province that would assault them, both little ones and women, and to take the spoil of them for a prey
12 upon one day in all the provinces of King Ahasuerus, namely, upon the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, which is the month of Adar.
13 "The great King Artaxerxes, unto the princes and governors of a hundred and seven and twenty provinces from India unto Ethiopia, and unto all our faithful subjects, greeting.
14 "Many, the more often they are honored with the great bounty of their gracious princes, the more proud they have waxed,
15 and endeavor to hurt not our subjects only, but, not being able to bear abundance, do take in hand to practice also against those who do them good.
16 And they take not only thankfulness away from among men, but also, lifted up with the exalted words of base persons who were never good, they think to escape the justice of God, who seeth all things and hateth evil.
17 Oftentimes also, fair speech of those who are put in trust to manage their friends' affairs hath caused many who are in authority to be partakers of innocent blood, and hath entangled them in irremediable calamities,
18 beguiling with the falsehood and deceit of their base disposition the innocency and goodness of princes.
19 "Now ye may see this, as we have declared, not so much by ancient histories as ye may if ye search what hath been wickedly done of late through the pestilent behavior of those who are unworthily placed in authority.
20 And we must take care for the time to come that our kingdom may be quiet and peaceable for all men,
21 both by changing our resolutions, and always judging things that are evident with more equitable proceeding.
22 For Haman, a Macedonian, the son of Hammedatha, being indeed a stranger from the Persian blood and far distant from our goodness, and as a stranger received by us,
23 had so far forth obtained the favor that we show toward every nation that he was called our father, and was continually honored by all men as the next person unto the king.
24 But he, not bearing his great dignity, went about to deprive us of our kingdom and life,
25 having by manifold and cunning deceits sought from us the destruction of Mordecai, who saved our life and continually procured our good, as also of blameless Esther, partaker of our kingdom, together with their whole nation.
26 For by these means, finding us destitute of friends, he thought to have transferred the kingdom of the Persians to the Macedonians.
27 "But we find that the Jews, whom this wicked wretch hath delivered to utter destruction, are no evildoers but live by most just laws,
28 and that they be children of the Most High and most mighty, living God, who hath ordered the kingdom both for us and for our progenitors in the most excellent manner.
29 "Therefore ye shall do well not to put in execution the letters sent unto you by Haman the son of Hammedatha.
30 For he that was the worker of these things is hanged at the gates of Shushan with all his family, God, who ruleth all things, speedily rendering vengeance to him according to his deserts.
31 'Therefore ye shall publish the copy of this letter in all places, that the Jews may freely live under their own laws.
32 And ye shall aid them, that even the same day, being the thirteenth day of the twelfth month of Adar, they may be avenged on those who in the time of their affliction shall set upon them.
33 For Almighty God hath turned to joy unto them the day wherein the chosen people should have perished.
34 "Ye shall therefore among your solemn feasts keep it a high day with all feasting,
35 that both now and hereafter there may be safety for us and the well-inclined Persians, but to those who conspire against us a memorial of destruction.
36 Therefore every city and country whatsoever, which shall not do according to these things, shall be destroyed without mercy with fire and sword, and shall be made not only impassable for men, but also most hateful for wild beasts and fowls for ever."
37 The copy of the writing for a commandment to be given in every province was published unto all people, that the Jews should be ready against that day to avenge themselves on their enemies.
38 So the posts who rode upon mules and camels went out, being hastened and pressed on by the king's commandment. And the decree was given at the palace at Shushan.
39 And Mordecai went out from the presence of the king in royal apparel of blue and white, and with a great crown of gold and with a garment of fine linen and purple; and the city of Shushan rejoiced and was glad.
40 The Jews had light and gladness, and joy and honor.
41 And in every province and in every city, whithersoever the king's commandment and his decree came, the Jews had joy and gladness, a feast and a good day. And many of the people of the land became Jews, for the fear of the Jews fell upon them.