And on the third day, when she ended her prayers, she put away her mourning garments and put on her glorious apparel.
And being gloriously adorned, after she called upon God, who knows all and saves all, she took two maids with her;
and on the one, she leaned, carrying herself daintily,
and the other followed, bearing up her train.
She was ruddy through the perfection of her beauty, and her countenance was cheerful and very amiable, but her heart was in anguish out of fear.
Then, having passed through all the doors, she stood before the king, who sat upon his royal throne and was clothed with all his robes of majesty, all glittering with gold and precious stones; and he was very dreadful.
Then, lifting up his countenance which shined with majesty, he looked very fiercely upon her; and the queen fell down and was pale and fainted and bowed herself upon the head of the maid who went before her.
Then God changed the spirit of the king into mildness, who in a fright leaped from his throne and took her in his arms, till she came to herself again, and comforted her with loving words and said to her,
"Esther, what is the matter? I am your brother, be of good cheer.
You shall not die, though our commandment be general. Come near."
And so he held up his golden scepter, and laid it upon her neck,
and embraced her, and said, "Speak to me."
Then she said to him, "I saw you, my lord, as an angel of God, and my heart was troubled for fear of your majesty.
For you are wonderful, lord, and your countenance is full of grace."
And as she was speaking, she fell down out of faintness.
Then the king was troubled and all his servants comforted her. [Alternate text from the Hebrew, verses 17-18:]
Now it happened on the third day that Esther put on her royal clothing, and stood in the inner court of the king's house, next to the king's house. The king sat on his royal throne in the royal house, next to the entrance of the house.
When the king saw Esther the queen, standing in the court, she obtained favor in his sight; and the king held out to Esther the golden scepter that was in his hand. So Esther came near, and touched the top of the scepter.
Then the king asked her, "What would you like, Queen Esther? What is your request? It shall be given you even to half of the kingdom."
Esther said, "If it seems good to the king, let the king and Haman come today to the banquet that I have prepared for him."
Then the king said, "Bring Haman quickly, so that it may be done as Esther has said." So the king and Haman came to the banquet that Esther had prepared.
The king said to Esther at the banquet of wine, "What is your petition? It shall be granted you. What is your request? Even to half of the kingdom it shall be performed."
Then Esther answered and said, "My petition and my request is this.
If I have found favor in the sight of the king, and if it please the king to grant my petition and to perform my request, let the king and Haman come to the banquet that I will prepare for them, and I will do tomorrow as the king has said."
Then Haman went out that day joyful and glad of heart. But when Haman saw Mordecai in the king's gate, that he didn't stand up or move for him, he was filled with wrath against Mordecai.
Nevertheless Haman restrained himself and went home. There he sent and called for his friends and Zeresh his wife.
Haman recounted to them the glory of his riches, the multitude of his children, all the things in which the king had promoted him, and how he had advanced him above the princes and servants of the king.
Haman also said, "Yes, Esther the queen let no man come in with the king to the banquet that she had prepared but myself; and tomorrow I am also invited by her together with the king.
Yet all this avails me nothing, so long as I see Mordecai the Jew sitting at the king's gate."
Then Zeresh his wife and all his friends said to him, "Let a gallows be made fifty cubits high, and in the morning speak to the king about hanging Mordecai on it. Then go in merrily with the king to the banquet." This pleased Haman, so he had the gallows made.