1亚哈随鲁在位期间，统治从印度到古实的一百二十七个省。 2亚哈随鲁王在书珊城登基， 3他在执政第三年大宴群臣，波斯和玛代的将领、各省的贵族和大臣都在场。 4整整一百八十天，他展示自己帝国的财富和王权的威荣。 5之后，他又一连七天在御花园宴请书珊城里所有的居民，无论尊卑。 6御花园里有白色的棉帐和蓝色的彩帐，用细麻绳和紫色绳系在大理石柱的银环上。有金银制成的床榻摆在各色斑岩、大理石、珍珠贝壳及其他贵重石头铺成的地上。 7饮酒用的是各式各样的金器皿，御酒大量供应，足显王的慷慨。 8喝酒有个规矩，不许勉强人，因为王吩咐过宫里所有的侍从，招待各人要随其所愿。 9瓦实提王后也在亚哈随鲁王的宫里设宴招待女宾。
10第七天，亚哈随鲁王喝得心中畅快，就吩咐在王身边服侍的米户幔、比斯他、哈波拿、比革他、亚拔他、西达和甲迦七位太监， 11去请瓦实提王后戴着后冠到王面前，向百姓和官员展现她的美貌，因为她非常美丽。 12但瓦实提王后违抗太监所传的谕旨，拒绝前来，王非常生气，怒火中烧。
13王有事习惯征求通晓律例和法则之人的意见，于是他去问精通时务的哲士。 14那时，靠近王的有甲示拿、示达、押玛他、他施斯、米力、玛西拿和米姆干七位波斯和玛代的大臣，他们常见王的面，在国中身居高位。 15王问他们：“瓦实提王后违抗太监所传的谕旨，按律该如何处置她？”
16米姆干当着王和大臣们的面说：“瓦实提王后不但冒犯了王，而且有害于举国的臣民。 17因为王后的事必传到所有妇女的耳中，致使她们藐视自己的丈夫，因为她们会说，‘亚哈随鲁王请瓦实提王后到他面前，她却不去。’ 18今天，波斯和玛代的贵妇听到王后这事，也会如此对待王的大臣，藐视和恼怒之事必层出不穷。 19王若愿意，就请降旨不准瓦实提再到王面前，把她王后的位分赐给比她更好的女子，并将此谕旨写入波斯和玛代的律法，永不更改。 20王的谕旨传遍王辽阔的国境后，所有的妇女，无论丈夫贵贱，都必尊重他们。”
The King’s Banquet
1These events happened in the days of King Xerxes,[a] who reigned over 127 provinces stretching from India to Ethiopia.[b] 2 At that time Xerxes ruled his empire from his royal throne at the fortress of Susa. 3 In the third year of his reign, he gave a banquet for all his nobles and officials. He invited all the military officers of Persia and Media as well as the princes and nobles of the provinces. 4 The celebration lasted 180 days—a tremendous display of the opulent wealth of his empire and the pomp and splendor of his majesty.
5 When it was all over, the king gave a banquet for all the people, from the greatest to the least, who were in the fortress of Susa. It lasted for seven days and was held in the courtyard of the palace garden. 6 The courtyard was beautifully decorated with white cotton curtains and blue hangings, which were fastened with white linen cords and purple ribbons to silver rings embedded in marble pillars. Gold and silver couches stood on a mosaic pavement of porphyry, marble, mother-of-pearl, and other costly stones.
7 Drinks were served in gold goblets of many designs, and there was an abundance of royal wine, reflecting the king’s generosity. 8 By edict of the king, no limits were placed on the drinking, for the king had instructed all his palace officials to serve each man as much as he wanted.
9 At the same time, Queen Vashti gave a banquet for the women in the royal palace of King Xerxes.
Queen Vashti Deposed
10 On the seventh day of the feast, when King Xerxes was in high spirits because of the wine, he told the seven eunuchs who attended him—Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, Abagtha, Zethar, and Carcas— 11 to bring Queen Vashti to him with the royal crown on her head. He wanted the nobles and all the other men to gaze on her beauty, for she was a very beautiful woman. 12 But when they conveyed the king’s order to Queen Vashti, she refused to come. This made the king furious, and he burned with anger.
13 He immediately consulted with his wise advisers, who knew all the Persian laws and customs, for he always asked their advice. 14 The names of these men were Carshena, Shethar, Admatha, Tarshish, Meres, Marsena, and Memucan—seven nobles of Persia and Media. They met with the king regularly and held the highest positions in the empire.
15 “What must be done to Queen Vashti?” the king demanded. “What penalty does the law provide for a queen who refuses to obey the king’s orders, properly sent through his eunuchs?”
16 Memucan answered the king and his nobles, “Queen Vashti has wronged not only the king but also every noble and citizen throughout your empire. 17 Women everywhere will begin to despise their husbands when they learn that Queen Vashti has refused to appear before the king. 18 Before this day is out, the wives of all the king’s nobles throughout Persia and Media will hear what the queen did and will start treating their husbands the same way. There will be no end to their contempt and anger.
19 “So if it please the king, we suggest that you issue a written decree, a law of the Persians and Medes that cannot be revoked. It should order that Queen Vashti be forever banished from the presence of King Xerxes, and that the king should choose another queen more worthy than she. 20 When this decree is published throughout the king’s vast empire, husbands everywhere, whatever their rank, will receive proper respect from their wives!”
21 The king and his nobles thought this made good sense, so he followed Memucan’s counsel. 22 He sent letters to all parts of the empire, to each province in its own script and language, proclaiming that every man should be the ruler of his own home and should say whatever he pleases.[c]