In an effort to show off his greatness, King Assuerus held the party to top all parties, inviting all his regional governors and all the great men of Persia to party hardy for nearly 200 days. Of course, no such display could be complete without showing off your smoking hot trophy wife so King Assuerus, after getting gloriously drunk, called for his queen, Vasthi, but she refused to come. Somewhat astounded, the King was warned by his advisors that such defiance might provoke a wave of feminism which would leave all the great men of Persia frustrated and sleeping on their sofas. So, Queen Vasthi is given the boot and King Assuerus starts the hunt for a new royal consort. Every province was to send their most beautiful virgins for his inspection, with each undergoing a full year of preparation to make them suitable choices for the ruler of most of the known world at the time. After making his inspection, King Assuerus chose a famously beautiful Jewish girl named Esther, previously known as Hadassah. It is said that she was an orphan who had been raised by her cousin, a man named Mordecai. Hailing from the tribe of Benjamin she had stayed with her cousin, who was more like her father for all intents and purposes, even after Cyrus had allowed the Jews to return home to Jerusalem.
To add to her worry, the King had not called for her attention in about a month so she had no expectation that a summons would come in time. She had everyone in her own household and all her fellow Jews in Persia pray and fast for three days before Esther finally determined she could wait no longer and bravely decided to go on her own to see the King -summons or no summons. Thankfully, King Assuerus was not unhappy with her at all and when she appeared before him was exceedingly glad to see her. Once again enthralled by her, the King promised to grant her any request, even should she ask for half his empire, he would hand it over instantly. Showing she had brains to match her beauty and bravery, Queen Esther instantly formulated a plan and asked for a banquet to be attended by herself, the King and Prince Aman. It was done and during the banquet, when the king was compliant and feeling no pain, she asked him to hold another the next day. The King did so even while the gallows were being prepared to hang poor Mordecai.
|Esther and the King in Italian Renaissance style|
Prince Aman was positively mortified and ran home to his wife, crying and wailing only to have her tell him he better suck it up and make nice with the Jew before the King gets angry. Just then the king’s eunuchs arrived to summon the prince to Queen Esther’s second banquet. He attended and the King asked Queen Esther again what he could do to show her his appreciation. Finally Esther said that Prince Aman was planning to massacre all of her people at which point the King stormed out in a fury and Prince Aman started doing some really fast talking to make nice with Queen Esther so that she might persuade the King to not tear him into little pieces when he came back. Yeah, probably not a good idea considering that Queen Esther was laying on her bed at the time and when the King came back he found Prince Aman all flushed and in a nervous sweat on the bed with his wife. “Fury” probably doesn’t begin to describe it. Immediately he had Prince Aman taken out and hanged on the same rope the prince had planned for Mordecai to set off his little genocide.
|Esther portrayed in the film "One Night With the King"|