Let the king give authority to certain men in all the divisions of his kingdom, to get together all the fair young virgins and send them to Shushan, the king's town, to the women's house, under the care of Hegai, the king's servant, the keeper of the women: and let the things needed for making them clean be given to them;
And he had been a father to Hadassah, that is Esther, the daughter of his father's brother: for she had no father or mother, and she was very beautiful; and when her father and mother were dead, Mordecai took her for his daughter.
So when the order made by the king was publicly given out, and a number of girls had been placed in the care of Hegai in the king's house in Shushan, Esther was taken into the king's house and put in the care of Hegai, the keeper of the women.
And he was pleased with the girl and was kind to her; and he quickly gave her what was needed for making her clean, and the things which were hers by right, and seven servant-girls who were to be hers from the king's house: and he had her and her servant-girls moved to the best place in the women's part of the house.
Now every girl, when her turn came, had to go in to King Ahasuerus, after undergoing, for a space of twelve months, what was ordered by the law for the women (for this was the time necessary for making them clean, that is, six months with oil of myrrh and six months with sweet perfumes and such things as are needed for making women clean):
In the evening she went, and on the day after she came back to the second house of the women, into the keeping of Shaashgaz, one of the king's unsexed servants who had the care of the king's wives: only if the king had delight in her and sent for her by name did she go in to him again.
Now when the time came for Esther, the daughter of Abihail, his father's brother, whom Mordecai had taken as his daughter, to go in to the king, she made request for nothing but what Hegai, the king's servant and keeper of the women, had given her. And Esther was looked on kindly by all who saw her.
And Esther was more pleasing to the king than all the women, and to his eyes she was fairer and more full of grace than all the other virgins: so he put his crown on her head and made her queen in place of Vashti.
Then the king gave a great feast for all his captains and his servants, even Esther's feast; and he gave orders through all the divisions of his kingdom for a day of rest from work, and gave wealth from his store.
In those days, while Mordecai was seated at the king's doorway, two of the king's servants, Bigthan and Teresh, keepers of the door, being angry, were looking for a chance to make an attack on King Ahasuerus.