1. When the day came for the order of the king to be carried out - the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, Adar, on which the enemies of the Jews had expected to crush them - the reverse happened, for it was the Jews who got the upper hand over those who sought their harm.
2. In their towns throughout the provinces of King Ahasuerus, the Jews gathered to strike at those who planned their destruction. But no one dared resist them, for they were feared by all the other nations.
3. In fact, all the officials of the provinces, the satraps, governors and the king's administrators supported the Jews out of fear of Mordecai,
4. who had become more and more powerful and prominent not only in the palace but throughout the provinces.
5. The Jews struck down their enemies, killing them by the sword, doing as they pleased to those who hated them.
6. In Susa alone, they killed five hundred men.
7. They also killed Parshandatha, Dalphon, Aspatha
8. Porathai, Adalia, Aridatha,
9. Parmashta, Arisai, Aridai, and Vaizatha,
10. the ten sons of Haman, who was Hammedatha's son and enemy of the Jews. But they laid no hand on the spoils.
11. That same day the number of the slain in Susa was reported to the king,
12. who in turn told Esther: "The Jews have killed five hundred men and the ten sons of Haman in Susa alone. Imagine what more they have done in the rest of my provinces! But you shall again be granted whatever you ask; whatever you request shall be fulfilled."
13. Esther replied, "If it pleases the king, let the Jews in Susa be permitted again tomorrow to carry out today's edict, and let Haman's ten sons be hanged on the gallows."
14. The king then ordered that this be done. The edict was issued in Susa, and the ten sons of Haman were hanged.
15. On the fourteenth day of the month of Adar, the Jews in Susa gathered again and put to death three hundred men. But again they laid no hand on the spoils.
16. The other Jews in the king's provinces also assembled to protect themselves and rid themselves of their enemies. They killed seventy-five thousand of their foes, but did not lay hands on the spoils.
17. This was on the thirteenth day of the month of Adar, and the Jews rested on the fourteenth, making it a day of feasting and rejoicing.
18. The Jews in Susa, however, assembled on the thirteenth and fourteenth and rested on the fifteenth, making this a day of feasting and rejoicing.
19. That is why the rural Jews have a different day of rest and celebration: the fourteenth of the month of Adar on which they send presents to each other.
20. Mordecai recorded these events and sent letters to all the Jews throughout the provinces of King Ahasuerus, both near and far,
21. directing them to celebrate annually the fourteenth and fifteenth of the month of Adar
22. as the days when the Jews rid themselves of their enemies, and as the month when their sorrow was turned into joy and their mourning into feasting. They were to observe these as days of festivity and rejoicing, days for giving food presents to one another and gifts to the poor.
23. The Jews agreed to observe annually this celebration instituted on Mordecai's written order.
24. For Haman, son of Hammedatha the Agagite, enemy of the Jews, had plotted to destroy them and had cast the pur or lot for their ruin.
25. Yet through Esther's intervention, the king ordered in writing that the wicked plan against the Jews should instead be turned against Haman, whom he ordered to be hanged as well as his sons.
26. These days, therefore, have been called Purim after the word pur. Because of this written order and of what they had seen and experienced,
27. the Jews took upon themselves, their descendants and all who would join them, to celebrate these two days every year without fail, in the manner prescribed and at the time appointed.
28. Commemorated and celebrated thus, in every family, province and city, through all generations, these days of Purim were never to fall into disuse among the Jews nor into oblivion among their descendants.
29. Queen Esther, daughter of Abihail, along with the Jew Mordecai, wrote with full authority to confirm this second letter concerning Purim.
30. Letters were sent to all the Jews in the one hundred twenty-seven provinces of Ahasuerus' kingdom, in words conveying goodwill and assurance,
31. enjoining them to observe these days of Purim at the designated time, as Mordecai the Jew and Queen Esther had decreed and just as the Jews had prescribed for themselves and their descendants, with respect to their duty of fasting and lamentation.
32. Esther's decree fixed these practices of Purim, and it was recorded in the book.