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Extra info for The Esther Scroll: The Story of the Story (JSOT Supplement Series)
We should add to this mastery of structural function some details of narrative subtlety. We can concentrate first on the objects of 'sending'. 8 we find Mordecai sending into the palace not just the news of the decree but a 2. Literary Art of Esther 35 written copy of the edict. It is a physical counterpart of the clothes that Esther has sent out in the previous communication scene (v. 4), but unlike the clothes, the edict is a token that cannot be refused. This is because with clothes Mordecai has a choice, but with the edict there is no choice.
8. The text of ch. 9 points in the same direction. For here the narrative of the Masoretic text strikes out in new directions which have not been prepared for and sometimes run counter to the plot of chs. 1-8. For example, it is a novelty of ch. 9, not harmonious with chs. 11). 2) as if the Jews were on the offensive; the tendency of the plot hitherto had been to suggest that no one could find it in them to take up arms against the Jews. 13) likewise belongs to a conception of the thirteenth of Adar as a day of Jewish attack rather than defence.
15 have alerted us to runs against the plot of earlier chapters. Moreover, within ch. 9 itself there is a conflict of conceptions of the thirteenth of Adar. For although in vv. 1-15 it is principally a day of victory, 'mastery', and slaughter, in v. 16 it is presented as a day of 'relief or 'rest' (niJ); this is not, admittedly, an incompatibility but it does evidence a difference of conception. In vv. 17 and 18, to complicate the conception further, the day after the killing, whether 30 The Esther Scroll the fourteenth or fifteenth, is regarded as the 'rest' (mj).
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