B.C.E. (Before the Common Era) and C.E. (Common Era), used by this author, are the designations corresponding to B.C. and A.D. often used in scholarly literature.


A late-second-century B.C.E. translation of the book into Greek adds a number of passages and includes the name of God. Those passages have been incorporated into Catholic versions of the Bible. In Protestant versions of the Bible, they are included in the Apocrypha.



A. S. Yahuda, “The Meaning of the Name Esther, ” Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society, 1946, pp. 174–178.


J. Perrot, “Shoshan Ha-birah,” Eretz-Israel 20 (1989), pp. 155–160.


A. Ungnad, “Keilinschriftliche Beiträge zum Buch Esra und Esther,” Zeitschrift für die Alttestamentliche Wissenschaft (ZAW) 58 (1940/1941), pp. 240–244; “Keilinschriftliche Beiträge zum Buch Esra und Esther,” ZAW 59 (1942/1943), p. 219.


Attested in a mid-fifth century B.C.E. text. Aû ceûrtain Mar-du-ka, who was a se-pi-rzu (Hebrew sofer), “scribe (on parchment or papyrus),” visited (maµt) Su-sa-nu “the (land) Susa.” The personal name Marduka by itself appears in a large number of texts. See Ungnad, “Keilinschriftliche Beiträge” ZAW 58, pp. 242–243.


R. Zadok, The Jews in Babylonia during the Chaldean and Achaemenian Periods (Haifa: Haifa Univ. Press, 1979) (in Hebrew).


This was convincingly demonstrated in a 1964 article by the German Semitist H. Wehr, “Das Tor des Königs in Buche Esther und verwandte Ausdrücke,” Der Islam 39 (1964), pp. 247–260. Almost all modern authors dealing with the Book of Esther have ignored this article, possibly because Wehr was primarily an Arabic scholar and the article appeared in a journal devoted principally to Islam. Wehr bases his conclusions on data from Herodotus and Xenophon, as well as on Assyrian and Babylonian royal inscriptions and even medieval Oriental sources.


Herodotus, History 3.138, 140; 5.11; 8.88; 9.109. See also Wiesehofer, “Die Freund und Wohltäter des Grosskönigs,” Studia Iranica 9 (1980), pp. 257–279.


On the rebellion in Egypt in 486/5 B.C.E., see Herodotus, History 8.7, and also the Cambridge Ancient History (CAH), 2nd ed., (Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Univ. Press, 1988), vol. 4, pp. 72–73; on the rebellion of Shamash-Eriba in Babylonia in 484 B.C.E., see CAH, pp. 73–75.


Herodotus 3.69–79 tells us about a plot of the seven highest Persian aristocrats against a magician who usurped the throne in 522 B.C.E. This plot brought to power Darius I, the father of Xerxes. Another variant of these same events is given in Herodotus 3.83–88. On the broad rights of the seven, see Herodotus 3.118.


We list here only examples; many more could be cited: (a) Old Persian official inscriptions: R.G. Kent, Old Persian Grammar, Texts, Lexicon (New Haven, CT: American Oriental Society, 1953). The famous Behistun inscription of King Darius I (522–486 B.C.E.) is written in Old Persian, Elamite and Babylonian. An Aramaic copy is also known (Jonas C. Greenfield and Bezalel Porten, The Bistun Inscription of Darius the Great: Aramaic Version [London, 1982]); (b) concerning the Lydian-Aramean Inscription: G. Elderkin, “The Lydian Bilingual Inscription,” American Journal of Archaeology 29 (1925), pp. 87–89; (c) the Aramaic, Greek and Lycian official trilingual inscription from the year 358 B.C.E.: H. Metzger et al., Foumilles de Xanthos VI, La stele trilingue de Letoon (Paris, 1979); (d) a great number of official inscriptions on behalf of the Persian authorities are collected in A Selection of Greek Historical Inscriptions, vol. 1, To the End of the Fifth Century B.C., ed. M.N. Tod, vol. 2, From 403 to 323 B.C. (Oxford: Oxford Univer. Press, 1946–1948); (e) the most recent large edition of official Aramaic texts of the Persian period: Textbook of Aramaic Documents from Ancient Egypt, vol. 1, Letters, ed. Portner and A. Yardeni, vol. 2, Contracts (Jerusalem: Aqademon, 1986–1989).


O. Bucci, “L’attivita del sovrano achemenide e gli Archivi reali persiani,” Revue Internationale des Droits de l’Antiquite 25 (1978), pp. 11–93, esp. pp. 17–20.


The sources are cited in D. Barag, “The Effects of the Tennes Rebellion on Palestine,” Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research 183 (1966), pp. 6–12; Ephraim Stern, Material Culture of the Land of the Bible in the Persian Period, 538–332, B.C. (Warminster, UK: Aris and Phillips; Jerusalem: Israel Exploration Society, 1983), p. 255.


Barag, “The Effects of the Tennes Rebellion,” pp. 6–12; Stern, Material Culture, p. 255.


The source for this is Solinus, a Latin chronicler of the third century, in Collectanea rerum memoriabilium 35.4 (edition Mommsen).