15 votes
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Why don't islands read the m'gila two days?

I gave a Shiur on this last year. Here is my summary of the reasons to be lenient. Much of this is based on a piece in קובץ פרי תמרים אדר תשמ"ז by Rav Ezriel Kahn. (Its also worth looking up the תשובה ...
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  • 5,240
15 votes

Can a woman write a megillah?

R Eliezer Melamed, author of Peninei Halakha, (here, note 10) writes The Aĥaronim debate whether a woman may write a Megilla. Birkei Yosef, Mateh Yehuda, and Pri Megadim posit that since a woman must ...
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  • 43.4k
13 votes
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Source that hearing the Megillah does not require Hebrew understanding?

The Mishna in Megillah (2:1) states: והלועז ששמע אשורית יצא A foreigner who heard [it] in Hebrew fulfills his obligation. The Talmud (18a) elaborates: והלועז ששמע אשורית יצא וכו', - והא ...
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12 votes
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How long does it take to learn to layn Megillas Ester?

I've been a Torah reader for about 45 years, and have read Megilla for about 20 years. This is tough to give you an exact assessment, here, because there are several factors here. So, take what I ...
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  • 68.7k
12 votes

Were Persian-Median kings illiterate?

In the case of Achashveirosh, Rashi writes: (from sefaria) לְהָבִיא אֶת סֵפֶר הַזִּכְרֹנוֹת. דֶּרֶךְ הַמְּלָכִים, כְּשֶׁשְּׁנָתָן נוֹדֶדֶת, אוֹמְרִים לִפְנֵיהֶם מְשָׁלִים וְשִׂיחוֹת עַד שֶׁשְּׁנָתָם ...
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  • 5,529
11 votes
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Charbonah related to destruction?

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 ...
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11 votes
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Haman going to the second feast dirty

The Talmud (Megillah 16a) states: וסריסי המלך הגיעו ויבהילו מלמד שהביאוהו בבהלה.‏ "The king’s chamberlains came, and they hastened" - This teaches that they brought him in disarray. On ...
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  • 5,529
10 votes

Microphone for Meggilah

R' Shlomo Zalman Auerbach1 discusses the entire issue of recreated sounds in Shu"t Minchas Shlomo siman 9. His basic synopsis is that since the sound is being converted from sound waves to electrical ...
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10 votes
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What does Avot 6:6 mean when it invokes redemption?

In general, גאולה (redemption) seems to mean restoring something to its proper place, as in: returning an enslaved person to his family/home, or likewise, returning an ancestral property to its ...
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  • 17.2k
10 votes

What does Avot 6:6 mean when it invokes redemption?

The Maharal in Or Chadash on Megilas Esther explains that Hashem performs miracles in order to create a Kiddush Hashem. However, if the person involved in the rescue will take the credit then there is ...
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  • 4,603
10 votes
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Online Megilla Reading and the name of Haman

The requirement of the megillah reading is to hear every word (Shulchan Aruch O"C 690:3), including Haman's name. There is a minhag to make noise "as if" you're drowning out Haman's name (Ram"a O"C ...
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  • 8,774
9 votes

Why did Mordechai not let Bigson & Seresh assasinate the king?

Rabbi Yonason Eibushutz answered humorously that disposing of two evil doers ( Bigsan and Teresh) is better than one ( Ahashverosh) The midrash (footnote 73) and Sefarim Chitzonum writes that Bigsan ...
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  • 7,410
9 votes
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When is the "main" mitzvah of hearing the Megillah?

Tosefos on Megillah 4a (s.v. "חייב אדם") writes that the primary pirsumei nisa is in the daytime reading. דעיקר פרסומי ניסא הוי בקריאה דיממא וקרא נמי משמע כן The Turei Even to Megillah 7b, s.v. ...
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9 votes

What is so important about the Bigsan and Seresh subplot?

If Mordechai never discovered the Bigsan and Seresh plot, then he would have (presumably) been executed by Haman. When Haman came to ask the king permission to hang Mordechai, the king interrupted ...
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  • 10.4k
9 votes

is there some significance in their relationship between Haman and Daniel?

They have the same numerical value. ה = 5 מ = 40 ן = 50 5 + 40 + 50 = 95 ד = 4 נ = 50 י = 10 א = 1 ל = 30 4 + 50 + 10 + 1 + 30 = 95 This equivalency is noted by R. Solomon Alkabetz in ...
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  • 47.8k
9 votes
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What rule governs the varying nikkud in words מִשְׁתֶּה and מִשְׁתֵּה?

When משתה is in construct state it has a tzere instead of a segol and would mean "drinking-party of" instead of just "drinking-party".
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  • 95.2k
9 votes
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Why do we read the Megillah by night and by day?

The Talmud in Megillah 4a lays out the requirement for reading the Megillah both at night and during the day: ואריב"ל חייב אדם לקרות את המגילה בלילה ולשנותה ביום שנאמר אלהי אקרא יומם ולא תענה ...
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  • 47.8k
8 votes

Mordecai: Esther's uncle?

See the commentary of the Ibn Ezra on Esther 8:1 (page 30 in the linked document) where he says that Mordechai was Esther's uncle.
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8 votes
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Is it really kosher to "apply" to become a gentile king's wife?

There are several places in the Talmud which assume she was taken by force, e.g. Megillah 15a: לך כנוס את כל היהודים וגו' עד אשר לא כדת אמר רבי אבא שלא כדת היה שבכל יום ויום עד עכשיו באונס ועכשיו ...
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8 votes
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Why are there varying vowels on proper nouns in Megillas Ester?

There are grammatical rules in general, but for your case: It's always שושַן הבירה, otherwise שושָן. It's always מרדכַי except on an esnachta, sof pasuk, or in exactly one case a zakeif katon ויגידו ...
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  • 8,774
8 votes
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How do we learn that Esther was a prophet?

Talmud Bavli, Megillah 14a lists the seven prophetesses as: Sarah Miriam Deborah Hannah Abigail Huldah Esther (Interestingly enough, Eve is not listed as one of the prophetesses.) The Talmud ...
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  • 38.2k
8 votes
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Talents during the time of Achasverous

Jewish Encyclopedia writes a heavy talent was 60 kilograms, a light talent 30 kilograms, and there's an opinion (very bottom) it is 20 kilograms. 10,000 talents would then be between 200-600 tons of ...
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  • 43.4k
8 votes
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Does anyone draw a parallel between Haman selling himself to Mordechai and Esav selling the birthright to Yaakov?

Yes, the Manos Halevi brings what the actual Shtar said: אני המן בן המדתא מזרע אגג, שלח אותי מלך אחשורוש במלחמה על עיר הינדקא, ומנה אותי המלך על ששה רבוא אנשי הצבא, ונתן לי המלך צידה לפרנס אותם, ...
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  • 39.5k
8 votes

Friends and experts of Haman

This question is asked by the Gemara Megillah 16a. The gist of it is that since at that point Haman's advisors said words of wisdom, the Megillah calls them 'Wise Men', to teach us that anyone who ...
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  • 6,684
8 votes
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What does the comment say after the end of Esther?

"סכום הפסוקים של ספר קסז וחציו ותען אסתר ותאמר וסדרים ה" Translation: The total [number] of verses of [this] book [are] 167 and its mid-point (in verse count) [is the verse] "Esther ...
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  • 20.3k
7 votes

Microphone for Meggilah

Rav Moshe in IG"M O.C.(2) siman 108 and O.C.(4) siman 126 notes that "some experts" say that the sound produced by a microphone is not the actual person's voice magnified, rather it's a new sound. ...
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  • 402
7 votes

Why are some letters in the names of Haman's sons little?

I discovered that the מגילת אסתר of the תורה שלֵמה has some answers: For פרמשתא, citing מדרש רבי עקיבא בן יוסף על אותיות קטנות:‎ פרמשתא, ש׳ ת׳ של פרמשתא קטנה, הסר פ׳ ור׳ וישאר שמתא.‏ This one is ...
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7 votes

Mordechai's ban on going to Achashveirosh's party

The source is Medrash Esther Rabba 7:13 See here: אמר רבי יצחק נפחא המן הרשע בעלילה גדולה בא על ישראל הה"ד ובמלאת הימים האלה עשה המלך לכל העם הנמצאים בשושן הבירה וגו' ואין העם האמור כאן אלא ...
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  • 5,181
7 votes
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How can a person who can't read Hebrew be yotzeh the megillah?

A person fulfills his obligation by hearing the megillah read in the original Hebrew even if he does not understand the meaning of the words (Shulchan Aruch OC 690:8). In fact, even the rabbis of ...
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  • 16.2k
7 votes

What does Mishneh Torah mean when it says all books of Prophets and Writings will be anuled in the times of the Messiah?

The source for this is Resh Lakish, quoted in yerushalmi megilah 1:5. R. Qafih explains that Rambam understands that passage to mean that the suffering and troubles recounted in the prophets will ...
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