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16

R' Yonasan Eibeschutz explains as follows: When Esther entered Achashverosh's throne room, a place full of idols, the Divine Presence left her (Megillah 15b). She realized, then, that such a place is not suitable for a miracle to take place. So she was going to have to get Achashverosh someplace where none of these would be present in order to be successful ...


16

Targum (to Esther 9:14) says that she fled, with seventy of Haman's surviving sons, and they were all reduced to begging.


14

The Mahara"l of Prauge, in his commentary to Megilas Esther called Ohr Chadash, (after offering the more basic suggestion that this denotes something Mordechai would do on a constant basis), explains that even when Mordechai had an option to use an alternate route, he would make a point of going in front of Haman and not bowing down. The Ohr Hachayim ...


13

Here are a couple: The very fact that the Megillah introduces him as איש, and takes the trouble to tell us his lineage and background, indicates that he was a person of importance. (It is true that איש can mean simply "a man," but quite often in Tanach, when a person is introduced with this term, it bears the connotation of "a prominent person" - one ...


13

I once heard an explanation - will have to see if I can find the source - that these other servants (Jews, presumably) held with the opinion later expressed by Rambam (Hil. Yesodei Hatorah 5:1,4) that one who risks his life to keep mitzvos when not required to do so (i.e., when it's not one of the "big three," the non-Jew is doing it for his own benefit, ...


12

Here's something I wrote about to answer this question a couple of years ago: If one reads only the text of the Megillah without any awareness of the talmudic materials on it or the history surrounding it, Achashveirosh seems like a pretty neutral king. However, having been the one personally responsible for the halting of the building of the Beis ...


12

Alshich (to 5:5-8) says that indeed she didn't eat at the first feast. Among many other things, this explains why the first one is just described as "the party which Esther made" (5:5), while to the second one Achashverosh and Haman came "to drink with Queen Esther" (7:1).


12

R. Mordechai Sasson, in his sefer דבר בעתו in the section called "רמזי מגלה", explains that Haman symbolizes the Yetzer Harah (evil inclination), and his ten sons allude to its ten bad character traits. Their death, brought about by Mordechai and Esther, represents the nullification of such evil traits by being overpowered by the Yetzer Tov (good ...


10

As I understand it, Charvonah is the linchpin of the Megilah, the meeting of two separate plots. Without Charvonah, Mordechai's rescue of King Achashverosh ends with his pony ride around Shushan. And without Charvonah, Esther's plea for her nation might have fallen on deaf ears; Achashverosh might well have decided to side with his chief advisor, who had ...


10

I just want to point out that the Midrashic tradition of Mordechai being even originally a righteous individual is not completely unsupported by the text. Most (some would argue: all) midrashic material is inspired by textual subtleties and allusions, no matter how non-explicit. From Esther Rabba (6:3) ושמו מרדכי. הרשעים קודמין לשמן. "נבל שמו", " שבע בן ...


10

Bartenura (to Megillah 1:1) says that it is associated with Yehoshua because he was the first to wage war against Amalek. Indeed, G-d directs Moshe there to "write this as a memorial in the book and place it in the ears of Yehoshua" - the Gemara (Megillah 7a and 18a) explains that this phrase refers, among other things, to the Megillah.


10

The Gemara (Megillah 13a, bottom), cited by Rashi to the verse in Esther, says that this was Achashverosh's last-ditch attempt to get Esther to reveal her origins, since otherwise she might be replaced as queen. (It says that this was done at Mordechai's advice; thus the juxtaposition that "Mordechai was sitting at the king's gate." Me'am Loez adds - I ...


10

Ohr Chadash - Maharal M'Prag asks this question and answers that Mordechai intentionally made sure to be in the areas where Haman was going to show he was not going to bow down. לא יכרע, זהו אף שהיה יכול מרדכי ללכת בדרך אחרת שלא יהיה פוגע בו ולא יכעס המן


10

Medrash Esther Raba 3 says Charvona was called Charvona as he was responsible for the Churban Bais Hamikdash. חרבונא מופיע פעמיים במגילה - בתחילת המגילה הוא מופיע כאחד משבעת הסריסים המשרתים את פני המלך אחשרוש, ובסוף המגילה הוא מגלה לאחשורוש על העץ שהכין המן. חרבונא זהו שם פרסי (א' בסופו). אומר המדרש [אסתר רבה, ג] שמשמעות שמו - "אחריב ביתיה", לשון ...


9

זכריה ח כג אמר יהוה צבאות בימים ההמה אשר יחזיקו עשרה אנשים מכל לשנות הגוים והחזיקו בכנף איש יהודי לאמר נלכה עמכם כי שמענו אלהים עמכם Yalkut Shimoni on Esther:אסתר - פרק ב - רמז תתרנג דבר אחר איש יהודי עליו נאמר מה שהיה הוא שיהיה, מה הגדולה נעשית על ידי איש יהודי, אף גאולה לעתיד כך, שנאמר בימים ההם אשר יחזיקו עשרה אנשים מכל לשונות הגוים והחזיקו בכנף איש ...


9

Megilla 13b says that Ester would "rise from the bosom of Achashverosh and immerse herself and sit in the bosom of Mordechai". Tosfos Harosh asks how this was permitted due to the law of "havchana" (the requirement for a women to abstain from relations for three months between husbands to identify the father), and explains that she utilized ...


8

It was the same person. Many times we find people in Tanach mentioned in different places with their names spelled differently. Like Chizkiyahu sometimes has a yud in front of his name making it Yechizkiyahu, or Tzidkiyahu is sometimes Tzidkiyah without a vav at the end. In Megillas Esther, we find Bigsan becomes Bigsana later, or as you pointed out, ...


8

The Talmud in Megillah 16b expounds the verse (Esther 8:16) in the following way: לַיְּהוּדִים, הָיְתָה אוֹרָה וְשִׂמְחָה, וְשָׂשֹׂן, וִיקָר The Jews had light and gladness, and joy and honour Light = Torah Gladness = Holidays Joy = Brit Milah Honor = Tefillin From this the Maharil (as quoted in the Darkei Moshe OC 693 sk 4) says that one should ...


8

The Meam Loez says that she meant that Achashveirosh shouldn't kill the Jews, as he would thereby lose out. Had the Jews been sold as slaves, Achashveirosh could have always changed his mind later on (once realized how useful the Jews are). However, once they would be dead, he couldn't have done anything.


8

I know this isn't the most geshmake answer, but Ibn Ezra (2:7 - p. 8 here) is clearly bothered by a similar question and says that perhaps the drasha that Mordechai took Esther for a wife doesn't mean that he actually married her, but that such was his intention. (I would add that in order to keep all the drashos one would have to conclude that he had at ...


8

After the fact: Unless the interruption was halachically mandated (eg: he needs to use the facilities), no time or speech interruption affects the validity of your megilla reading (SA OC 690:5). An interruption between the bracha and the beginning of reading does affect the validity of the bracha-mitzva connection. (MB 692:9, also see footnote 12 in ...


8

Bereishit Rabbah 39:13 (39:4 in some edition) brings a machloket Rav and Shemuel if Esther was 40 or 80 years old respectively.


8

I'm fascinated by the midrashic answers presented for this! Are there more? From a scholarly perspective, the increased use of the participle in place of the narrative waw-consecutive imperfect (wayiqtol) form is a classic feature of Late Biblical Hebrew (LBH). To unpack that a bit... What Modern Hebrew treats as the "present tense" (words like molekh, ...


7

דניאל ג:יב איתי גברין יהודאין די מנית יתהון על עבידת מדינת בבל שדרך מישך ועבד נגו גבריא אלך לא שמו עליך עלך מלכא טעם לאלהיך לאלהך לא פלחין ולצלם דהבא די הקימת לא סגדין: It's in Aramaic, but I think it still counts.


7

Since Mordechai did not tell the King himself, Achashveirosh felt beholden to Esther for saving his life, and in addition Hashem put into the mind of Achashveirosh not to pay Mordechai right away in order to save it for later when it was needed. ...


7

It is possible that, though the idea as originally outlined for the king by his advisers did in fact include the criterion of 'besulot', when the king issued the edict that criterion was omitted. Hence we do not find it listed in 2:8 and on, where it lists נְעָרוֹת alone: וַיְהִי, בְּהִשָּׁמַע דְּבַר-הַמֶּלֶךְ וְדָתוֹ, וּבְהִקָּבֵץ נְעָרוֹת רַבּוֹת ...


7

The simple answer is two-fold: The Jews already knew that the decree had occurred, and they were quite upset about ("v'hair shushan navocha"). You can imagine they were paying attention to the local news. Mordechai was the head of the Sanhedrin, in addition to being a figure in the king's court, both very visible positions. Given (1), people were probably ...


7

About the second part of the question: Yalkut Shimoni (to Esther 4:16) says that he limited the fast to those "found in Shushan" because they were the ones who had eaten at Achashverosh's feast. The Jews in the rest of the empire weren't guilty of that. [That they too were in danger is attributed by R. Shimon bar Yochai (Megillah 12a) to their having bowed ...


7

The Gemara (Megillah 12b) sees the names of these seven courtiers as hinting at various aspects of the sacrificial service in the Beis Hamikdash. For example, כרשנא is explained as a portmanteau of כרים (בני) שנה, fat sheep in their first year; שתר, of שתי תורין (two turtledoves); etc. Since coming to the Beis Hamikdash to offer sacrifices is often described ...


7

I can tell you what I do with my own Megillah, although it's relatively small - 11" tall and 48" wide - so YMMV if you have a large one. It has ten columns (all the same width except for the last, which is a little narrower). I fold it 3-4-3 (there's no requirement that each fold be the same width), and crease the folds a little so that it naturally bends ...



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