Is there a peshat difference between the usual wording, “ושתי המלכה” Vashti the queen (or “אסתר המלכה” Esther the queen), and the wording used twice in Chapter 1 (verses 12 and 15), “המלכה ושתי” the queen, Vashti?

Is “Queen Vashti” a better match in English for “ושתי המלכה”, and “Vashti, the queen” for “המלכה ושתי”, despite the actual word order?

  • just to make sure I'm scanning the text right -- it only uses hamalkah vashti in 1:12 when she speaks for herself? or is it used elsewhere? if that is accurate it dovetails with something i heard years ago -- she was queen by birth and he married her and usurped the power. so he calls her "vashti, who happens to be the queen" and when she throws a party to copy him, she is subservient. she, in 1:12 calls herself "the queen whose name is vashti" to assert her own independent power. but I don't recall any details. – rosends Feb 26 '13 at 18:45
  • The Malbim says that vasti was a real queen and when she refused she dated she is from real malchus,but in hamans(memuchan) and achashvarosh eyes she was vasti the queen of achashvarosh.By Esther she is called Malka when she is talking to Mordichai. – sam Feb 26 '13 at 18:49
  • @Dan Also 1:15. – Double AA Feb 26 '13 at 18:57
  • Note that Achashverosh is always המלך אחשורוש and Esther is always אסתר המלכה. – Double AA Feb 26 '13 at 19:30
  • @DoubleAA -- interesting -- 2 answers -- one is that this is retelling her assertion of strength so it refers to her the way she is trying to be and for what she must be punished. Second, the mechon site puts a comma after hamalka in 1:15 (is this reflected in the trope?) which separates the two ideas -- hamalka and vashti, further reducing her. – rosends Feb 26 '13 at 19:38

I remember hearing - do not know from who - that whenever Vashti puts her foot down, for example when she refuses to go to Achashverosh then it says HaMalka first, since she is showing I am the Malka how dare you call me. Other times it says HaMalka later.

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