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They do. You can see in the Karaite Jews of America website that they celebrate Purim on a similar date (though in Adar I in leap years).


I have a suspicion that Achashveirosh knew that he didn't know who Esther was, ein Esther magedes vechulei. And that he thought Esther was now ready to reveal her identity for a price (ad chatzi ha'malchus). When he addresses Esther in the second tense without using her title he means, 'Go on, tell me the secret.' When he addresses her as Esther ha'Malkah ...

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