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ple, that they should be ready against that day.

15 The posts went out, being hastened by the king's commandment, and the decree was given in Shushan the palace. And the king and Haman sat down to drink; but the city Shushan was perplexed.

CHAP. IV.

When Mordecai perceived all that was done, Mordecai rent his clothes, and put on sackcloth with ashes, and went out into the midst of the city, and cried with a loud and a bitter cry; 2 And came

even before the king's gate: for none might enter into the king's gate clothed with sackcloth.

3 And in every province, whithersoever the king's cominandment and his decree came, there was great mourning among the Jews, and fasting, and weeping, and wailing; and many lay in sackcloth and ashes.

4 So Esther's maids and her chamberlains came and told it her. Then was the queen exceedingly grieved; and she sent raiment to clothe Mordecai, and to take away his sackcloth from him: but he received it not.

5 Then called Esther for Hatach, one of the king's chamberlains, whom he had appointed to attend upon her, and gave him a commandment to Mordecai, to know what it was, and why it was.

6 So Hatach went forth to Mordecai unto the street of the city, which was before the king's gate.

7 And Mordecai told him of all that had happened unto him, and of the sum of the money that Haman had promised to pay to the king's

treasuries for the Jews, to destroy them.

8 Also he gave him the copy of the writing of the decree that was given at Shushan to destroy them, to shew it unto Esther, and to declare it unto her, and to charge her that she should go in unto the king, to make supplication unto him, and to inake request before him for her people.

9 And Hatach came and told Esther the words of Mordecai.

10 Again Esther spake unto Hatach, and gave him commandment unto Mordecai;

11 All the king's servants, and the people of the king's provinces, do know, that whosoever, whether man or woman, shall come unto the king into the inner court, who is not called, there is one law of his to put him to death, except such to whom the king shall hold out the golden sceptre, that he may live: but I have not been called to come in unto the king these thirty days.

12 And they told to Mordecai Esther's words.

13 Then Mordecai commanded to answer Esther, Think not with thyself that thou shalt escape in the king's house, more than all the Jews.

14 For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time, then shall there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place; but thou and thy father's house shall be destroyed: and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?

15 Then Esther bade them return Mordecai this answer,

16 Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in Shushan, and fast

and neither eat nor drink three days, night or day: I also and my maidens will fast likewise; and so will I go in unto the king, which is not according to the law : and if I perish, I perish.

ye for me,

17 So Mordecai went his way, and did according to all that Esther had commanded him.

CHAP. V. Now it came to pass on the third day, that Esther put on her royal apparel, and stood in the inner court of the king's house, over against the king's house : and the king sat upon bis royal throne in the royal house, over against the gate of the house.

2 And it was so, when the king saw Esther the queen standing in the court, that she obtained favour in his sight : and the king held out to Esther the golden sceptre that was in his hand. So Esther drew near, and touched the top of the sceptre.

3 Then said the king unto her, What wilt thou, queen Esther ? and what is thy request? it shall be even given thee to the half of the kingdom.

4 And Esther answered, If it seem good unto the king, let the king and Haman come this day unto the banquet that I have prepared for him.

5 Then the king said, Cause Haman to make haste, that he

may

do as Esther hath said. So the king and Haman came to the banquet that Esther had prepared.

6 And the king said unto Esther at the banquet of wine, What is thy petition? and it shall be granted thee: and what is thy request ? even to the half of the kingdom it shall be performed.

7 Then answered Esther, and said, My petition and my request is;

8 If I have found favour in the sight of the king, and if it please the king to grant my petition, and to perform my request, let the king and Haman come to the banquet that I shall prepare for them, and I will do to morrow as the king hath said.

9 Then went Haman forth that day joyful and with a glad heart : but when Haman saw Mordecai in the king's gate, that he stood not up, nor moved for him, he was full of indignation against Mordecai.

10 Nevertheless Haman refrained himself: and when he came home, he sent and called for his friends, and Zeresh his wife.

11 And Haman told them of the glory of his riches, and the multitude of his children, and all the things wherein the king had promoted him, and how he had advanced him above the princes and servants of the king.

12 Haman said moreover, Yea, Esther the queen did let no man come in with the king unto the banquet that she had prepared but myself; and to morrow am I invited unto her also with the king.

13 Yet all this availeth me nothing, so long as I see Mordecai the Jew sitting at the king's gate.

14 Then said Zeresh his wife and all his friends unto him, Let a gallows be made of fifty cubits high, and to morrow speak thou unto the king that Mordecai may be hanged thereon: then go thou in merrily with the king unto the banquet. And the thing pleased Haman; and he caused the gallows to be made.

C H A P. VI.

On that night could not the king sleep, and he commanded to bring

the book of records of the chronicles ; and they were read before the king.

2 And it was found written, that Mordecai had told of Bigthana and Teresh, two of the king's chamberlains, the keepers of the door, who sought to lay band on the king Ahasuerus.

3 And the king said, What honour and dignity hath been done to Mordecai for this? Then said the king's servants that ministered unto him, There is nothing done for him.

4 And the king said, Who is in the court ? Now Haman was come into the outward court of the king's house, to speak unto the king to hang Mordecai on the gallows that he had prepared for him.

5 And the king's servants said unto him, Behold, Haman standeth in the court. And the king said, Let him come in.

6 So Haman came in.' And the king said unto him, What shall be done unto the man whom the king delighteth to honour ? Now Haman thought in his heart, To whom would the king delight to do honour more than to myself?

7 And Haman answered the king, For the man whom the king delighteth to honour,

8 Let the royal apparel be brought which the king useth to wear, and the horse that the king rideth upon, and the crown royal which is set upon his head :

9 And let this apparel and horse be delivered to the hand of one of the king's most noble princes, that they may array the man withal whom the king delighteth to honour, and bring him on horseback through the street of the city, and proclaim before him, Thus shall it be done to

the man whom the king delighteth to honour.

10 Then the king said to Haman, Make baste, and take the apparel and the horse, as thou hast said, and do even so to Mordecai the Jew, that sitteth at the king's gate: let nothing fail of all that thou hast spoken.

u Then took Haman the apparel and the horse, and arrayed Mordecai, and brought him on horseback through the street of the city, and proclaimed before him, Thus shall it be done unto the man whom the king delighteth to honour.

12 And Mordecai came again to the king's gate. But Haman hasted to his house mourning, and having his head covered.

13 And Haman told Zeresh his wife and all his friends every thing that had befallen him. Then said his wise men and Zeresh his wife unto him, If Mordecai be of the seed of the Jews, before whom thou hast begun to fall, thou shalt not prevail against him, but shalt surely fall before him.

14 And while they were yet talking with him, came the king's chamberlains, and hasted to bring Haman unto the banquet that Esther had prepared.

CHAP. VII.

So the king and Haman came to banquet with Esther the queen.

2 And the king said again unto Esther on the second day at the banquet of wine, What is thy petition, queen Esther? and it shall be granted thee: and what is thy request ? and it shall be performed, even to the half of the kingdom. .

3 Then Esther the queen answer

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the book of records of the chroni- the man whom the king delighteth cles; and they were read before the to honour. king

10 Then the king said to Haman, 2 And it was found written, that Make haste, and take the apparel Mordecai had told of Bigthana and and the horse, as thou hast said, and Teresh, two of the king's chamber- do even so to Mordecai the Jew, lains, the keepers of the door, who that sitteth at the king's gate: let sought to lay hand on the king A- nothing fail of all that thou hast hasuerus.

spoken. 3 And the king said, What ho- u Then took Haman the appanour and dignity hath been done to rel and the horse, and arrayed MorMordecai for this? Then said the decai, and brought him on horseking's servants that ministered unto back through the street of the city, him, There is nothing done for him. and proclaimed before him, Thus

4 And the king said, Who is in shall it be done unto the man whom the court? Now Haman was come the king delighteth to honour. into the outward court of the king's 12 And Mordecai came again to house, to speak unto the king to the king's gate. But Haman hasted hang Mordecai on the gallows that to his house mourning, and having he had prepared for him.

his head covered. 5 And the king's servants said 13 And Haman told Zeresh his unto him, Behold, Haman standeth wife and all his friends every thing in the court. And the king said, that had befallen him. Then said his Let him come in.

wise men and Zeresh his wife unto 6 So Haman came in. And the him, If Mordecai be of the seed of king said unto him, What shall be the Jews, before whom thou hast done unto the man whom the king begun to fall, thou shalt not prevail delighteth to honour ? Now Haman against him, but shalt surely fall bethought in his heart, To whom would fore him. the king delight to do honour more 14 And while they were yet talkthan to myself?

ing with him, came the king's cham7 And Haman answered the king, berlains, and hasted to bring Haman For the man whom the king delight- unto the banquet that Esther had eth to honour,

prepared. 8 Let the royal apparel be brought which the king useth to wear, and

CHAP. VII. the horse that the king rideth upon, and the crown royal which is set

So the king and Haman came to upon his head :

banquet with Esther the queen. 9 And let this apparel and horse 2 And the king said again unto be delivered to the hand of one of Esther on the second day at the the king's most noble princes, that banquet of wine, What is thy petithey may array the man withal whom

tion, queen Esther? and it shall be the king delighteth to honour, and granted thee: and what is thy rebring him on horseback through the quest? and it shall be performed, street of the city, and proclaim be- even to the half of the kingdom. fore him, Thus shall it be done to 3 Then Esther the queen answer

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