Reading the Megillah backwards
1 א
מתני׳ הקורא את המגילה למפרע לא יצא קראה על פה קראה תרגום בכל לשון לא יצא אבל קורין אותה ללועזות בלעז והלועז ששמע אשורית יצא
MISHNA: With regard to one who reads the Megilla out of order, reading a later section first, and then going back to the earlier section, he has not fulfilled his obligation. If he read it by heart, or if he read it in Aramaic translation or in any other language that he does not understand, he has not fulfilled his obligation. However, for those who speak a foreign language, one may read the Megilla in that foreign language. And one who speaks a foreign language who heard the Megilla read in Ashurit, i.e., in Hebrew, has fulfilled his obligation.
2 ב
מידי קריאה כתיבה הכא עשייה כתיבה דכתיב להיות עושים את שני הימים אלא מהכא דכתיב והימים האלה נזכרים ונעשים (אסתר ט, כח) איתקש זכירה לעשייה מה עשייה למפרע לא אף זכירה למפרע לא
The Gemara rejects this derivation: Is reading written here at all? It is “observing” that is written here in this verse, not reading, as it is written: “That they should unfailingly observe these two days according to their writing, and according to their appointed times.” Rather, the proof is from here, as it is written: “And that these days should be remembered and observed throughout every generation” (Esther 9:28). Remembering is juxtaposed to observing, indicating: Just as observing cannot be out of order, as was derived from the words “That they should unfailingly observe these two days according to their writing, and according to their appointed times,” so too, remembering, by reading the Megilla, may not be out of order.
3 ג
פ' הקורא את המגלה למפרע לא יצא ומוכח בגמ' דאפי' בפרשיות כגון שהקדי' פרשה ב' לא' מש"כ בק"ש דלמפרע פרשיות יצא כדתנן היה קורא בתורה והגיע זמן המקרא אם כיון לבו יצא ומשמע שהיה קורא כדרכו כדרך שכתובה בתורה דהא אוקימנא בקורא להגיה. ודין הוא התם אין טעם שיהא סדר פרשיות מעכב בדיעבד כיון שקראם כסדר שכתובות בתורה אבל הכא במגלה אם סרס את הפרשיות הפך כל הענין דכולה כחדא פרשה היא:
4 ד
(א) וַיָּשֶׂם֩ הַמֶּ֨לֶךְ אחשרש [אֲחַשְׁוֵר֧וֹשׁ ׀] מַ֛ס עַל־הָאָ֖רֶץ וְאִיֵּ֥י הַיָּֽם׃ (ב) וְכָל־מַעֲשֵׂ֤ה תָקְפּוֹ֙ וּגְב֣וּרָת֔וֹ וּפָרָשַׁת֙ גְּדֻלַּ֣ת מָרְדֳּכַ֔י אֲשֶׁ֥ר גִּדְּל֖וֹ הַמֶּ֑לֶךְ הֲלוֹא־הֵ֣ם כְּתוּבִ֗ים עַל־סֵ֙פֶר֙ דִּבְרֵ֣י הַיָּמִ֔ים לְמַלְכֵ֖י מָדַ֥י וּפָרָֽס׃ (ג) כִּ֣י ׀ מָרְדֳּכַ֣י הַיְּהוּדִ֗י מִשְׁנֶה֙ לַמֶּ֣לֶךְ אֲחַשְׁוֵר֔וֹשׁ וְגָדוֹל֙ לַיְּהוּדִ֔ים וְרָצ֖וּי לְרֹ֣ב אֶחָ֑יו דֹּרֵ֥שׁ טוֹב֙ לְעַמּ֔וֹ וְדֹבֵ֥ר שָׁל֖וֹם לְכָל־זַרְעֽוֹ׃
(1) King Ahasuerus imposed tribute on the mainland and the islands. (2) All his mighty and powerful acts, and a full account of the greatness to which the king advanced Mordecai, are recorded in the Annals of the Kings of Media and Persia. (3) For Mordecai the Jew ranked next to King Ahasuerus and was highly regarded by the Jews and popular with the multitude of his brethren; he sought the good of his people and interceded for the welfare of all his kindred.
5 ה
6 ו
(א) וּבִשְׁנֵים֩ עָשָׂ֨ר חֹ֜דֶשׁ הוּא־חֹ֣דֶשׁ אֲדָ֗ר בִּשְׁלוֹשָׁ֨ה עָשָׂ֥ר יוֹם֙ בּ֔וֹ אֲשֶׁ֨ר הִגִּ֧יעַ דְּבַר־הַמֶּ֛לֶךְ וְדָת֖וֹ לְהֵעָשׂ֑וֹת בַּיּ֗וֹם אֲשֶׁ֨ר שִׂבְּר֜וּ אֹיְבֵ֤י הַיְּהוּדִים֙ לִשְׁל֣וֹט בָּהֶ֔ם וְנַהֲפ֣וֹךְ ה֔וּא אֲשֶׁ֨ר יִשְׁלְט֧וּ הַיְּהוּדִ֛ים הֵ֖מָּה בְּשֹׂנְאֵיהֶֽם׃ (ב) נִקְהֲל֨וּ הַיְּהוּדִ֜ים בְּעָרֵיהֶ֗ם בְּכָל־מְדִינוֹת֙ הַמֶּ֣לֶךְ אֳחַשְׁוֵר֔וֹשׁ לִשְׁלֹ֣חַ יָ֔ד בִּמְבַקְשֵׁ֖י רָֽעָתָ֑ם וְאִישׁ֙ לֹא־עָמַ֣ד לִפְנֵיהֶ֔ם כִּֽי־נָפַ֥ל פַּחְדָּ֖ם עַל־כָּל־הָעַמִּֽים׃ (ג) וְכָל־שָׂרֵ֨י הַמְּדִינ֜וֹת וְהָאֲחַשְׁדַּרְפְּנִ֣ים וְהַפַּח֗וֹת וְעֹשֵׂ֤י הַמְּלָאכָה֙ אֲשֶׁ֣ר לַמֶּ֔לֶךְ מְנַשְּׂאִ֖ים אֶת־הַיְּהוּדִ֑ים כִּֽי־נָפַ֥ל פַּֽחַד־מָרְדֳּכַ֖י עֲלֵיהֶֽם׃ (ד) כִּֽי־גָ֤דוֹל מָרְדֳּכַי֙ בְּבֵ֣ית הַמֶּ֔לֶךְ וְשָׁמְע֖וֹ הוֹלֵ֣ךְ בְּכָל־הַמְּדִינ֑וֹת כִּֽי־הָאִ֥ישׁ מָרְדֳּכַ֖י הוֹלֵ֥ךְ וְגָדֽוֹל׃ (פ) (ה) וַיַּכּ֤וּ הַיְּהוּדִים֙ בְּכָל־אֹ֣יְבֵיהֶ֔ם מַכַּת־חֶ֥רֶב וְהֶ֖רֶג וְאַבְדָ֑ן וַיַּֽעֲשׂ֥וּ בְשֹׂנְאֵיהֶ֖ם כִּרְצוֹנָֽם׃ (ו) וּבְשׁוּשַׁ֣ן הַבִּירָ֗ה הָרְג֤וּ הַיְּהוּדִים֙ וְאַבֵּ֔ד חֲמֵ֥שׁ מֵא֖וֹת אִֽישׁ׃ (ז) וְאֵ֧ת ׀ פַּרְשַׁנְדָּ֛תָא וְאֵ֥ת ׀ דַּֽלְפ֖וֹן וְאֵ֥ת ׀ אַסְפָּֽתָא׃ (ח) וְאֵ֧ת ׀ פּוֹרָ֛תָא וְאֵ֥ת ׀ אֲדַלְיָ֖א וְאֵ֥ת ׀ אֲרִידָֽתָא׃ (ט) וְאֵ֤ת ׀ פַּרְמַ֙שְׁתָּא֙ וְאֵ֣ת ׀ אֲרִיסַ֔י וְאֵ֥ת ׀ אֲרִדַ֖י וְאֵ֥ת ׀ וַיְזָֽתָא׃ (י) עֲ֠שֶׂרֶת בְּנֵ֨י הָמָ֧ן בֶּֽן־הַמְּדָ֛תָא צֹרֵ֥ר הַיְּהוּדִ֖ים הָרָ֑גוּ וּבַ֨בִּזָּ֔ה לֹ֥א שָׁלְח֖וּ אֶת־יָדָֽם׃ (יא) בַּיּ֣וֹם הַה֗וּא בָּ֣א מִסְפַּ֧ר הַֽהֲרוּגִ֛ים בְּשׁוּשַׁ֥ן הַבִּירָ֖ה לִפְנֵ֥י הַמֶּֽלֶךְ׃ (ס) (יב) וַיֹּ֨אמֶר הַמֶּ֜לֶךְ לְאֶסְתֵּ֣ר הַמַּלְכָּ֗ה בְּשׁוּשַׁ֣ן הַבִּירָ֡ה הָרְגוּ֩ הַיְּהוּדִ֨ים וְאַבֵּ֜ד חֲמֵ֧שׁ מֵא֣וֹת אִ֗ישׁ וְאֵת֙ עֲשֶׂ֣רֶת בְּנֵֽי־הָמָ֔ן בִּשְׁאָ֛ר מְדִינ֥וֹת הַמֶּ֖לֶךְ מֶ֣ה עָשׂ֑וּ וּמַה־שְּׁאֵֽלָתֵךְ֙ וְיִנָּ֣תֵֽן לָ֔ךְ וּמַה־בַּקָּשָׁתֵ֥ךְ ע֖וֹד וְתֵעָֽשׂ׃ (יג) וַתֹּ֤אמֶר אֶסְתֵּר֙ אִם־עַל־הַמֶּ֣לֶךְ ט֔וֹב יִנָּתֵ֣ן גַּם־מָחָ֗ר לַיְּהוּדִים֙ אֲשֶׁ֣ר בְּשׁוּשָׁ֔ן לַעֲשׂ֖וֹת כְּדָ֣ת הַיּ֑וֹם וְאֵ֛ת עֲשֶׂ֥רֶת בְּנֵֽי־הָמָ֖ן יִתְל֥וּ עַל־הָעֵֽץ׃ (יד) וַיֹּ֤אמֶר הַמֶּ֙לֶךְ֙ לְהֵֽעָשׂ֣וֹת כֵּ֔ן וַתִּנָּתֵ֥ן דָּ֖ת בְּשׁוּשָׁ֑ן וְאֵ֛ת עֲשֶׂ֥רֶת בְּנֵֽי־הָמָ֖ן תָּלֽוּ׃ (טו) וַיִּֽקָּהֲל֞וּ היהודיים [הַיְּהוּדִ֣ים] אֲשֶׁר־בְּשׁוּשָׁ֗ן גַּ֠ם בְּי֣וֹם אַרְבָּעָ֤ה עָשָׂר֙ לְחֹ֣דֶשׁ אֲדָ֔ר וַיַּֽהַרְג֣וּ בְשׁוּשָׁ֔ן שְׁלֹ֥שׁ מֵא֖וֹת אִ֑ישׁ וּבַ֨בִּזָּ֔ה לֹ֥א שָׁלְח֖וּ אֶת־יָדָֽם׃ (טז) וּשְׁאָ֣ר הַיְּהוּדִ֡ים אֲשֶׁר֩ בִּמְדִינ֨וֹת הַמֶּ֜לֶךְ נִקְהֲל֣וּ ׀ וְעָמֹ֣ד עַל־נַפְשָׁ֗ם וְנ֙וֹחַ֙ מֵאֹ֣יְבֵיהֶ֔ם וְהָרֹג֙ בְּשֹׂ֣נְאֵיהֶ֔ם חֲמִשָּׁ֥ה וְשִׁבְעִ֖ים אָ֑לֶף וּבַ֨בִּזָּ֔ה לֹ֥א שָֽׁלְח֖וּ אֶת־יָדָֽם׃ (יז) בְּיוֹם־שְׁלֹשָׁ֥ה עָשָׂ֖ר לְחֹ֣דֶשׁ אֲדָ֑ר וְנ֗וֹחַ בְּאַרְבָּעָ֤ה עָשָׂר֙ בּ֔וֹ וְעָשֹׂ֣ה אֹת֔וֹ י֖וֹם מִשְׁתֶּ֥ה וְשִׂמְחָֽה׃ (יח) והיהודיים [וְהַיְּהוּדִ֣ים] אֲשֶׁר־בְּשׁוּשָׁ֗ן נִקְהֲלוּ֙ בִּשְׁלֹשָׁ֤ה עָשָׂר֙ בּ֔וֹ וּבְאַרְבָּעָ֥ה עָשָׂ֖ר בּ֑וֹ וְנ֗וֹחַ בַּחֲמִשָּׁ֤ה עָשָׂר֙ בּ֔וֹ וְעָשֹׂ֣ה אֹת֔וֹ י֖וֹם מִשְׁתֶּ֥ה וְשִׂמְחָֽה׃ (יט) עַל־כֵּ֞ן הַיְּהוּדִ֣ים הפרוזים [הַפְּרָזִ֗ים] הַיֹּשְׁבִים֮ בְּעָרֵ֣י הַפְּרָזוֹת֒ עֹשִׂ֗ים אֵ֠ת י֣וֹם אַרְבָּעָ֤ה עָשָׂר֙ לְחֹ֣דֶשׁ אֲדָ֔ר שִׂמְחָ֥ה וּמִשְׁתֶּ֖ה וְי֣וֹם ט֑וֹב וּמִשְׁל֥וֹחַ מָנ֖וֹת אִ֥ישׁ לְרֵעֵֽהוּ׃ (פ) (כ) וַיִּכְתֹּ֣ב מָרְדֳּכַ֔י אֶת־הַדְּבָרִ֖ים הָאֵ֑לֶּה וַיִּשְׁלַ֨ח סְפָרִ֜ים אֶל־כָּל־הַיְּהוּדִ֗ים אֲשֶׁר֙ בְּכָל־מְדִינוֹת֙ הַמֶּ֣לֶךְ אֲחַשְׁוֵר֔וֹשׁ הַקְּרוֹבִ֖ים וְהָרְחוֹקִֽים׃ (כא) לְקַיֵּם֮ עֲלֵיהֶם֒ לִהְי֣וֹת עֹשִׂ֗ים אֵ֠ת י֣וֹם אַרְבָּעָ֤ה עָשָׂר֙ לְחֹ֣דֶשׁ אֲדָ֔ר וְאֵ֛ת יוֹם־חֲמִשָּׁ֥ה עָשָׂ֖ר בּ֑וֹ בְּכָל־שָׁנָ֖ה וְשָׁנָֽה׃ (כב) כַּיָּמִ֗ים אֲשֶׁר־נָ֨חוּ בָהֶ֤ם הַיְּהוּדִים֙ מֵא֣וֹיְבֵיהֶ֔ם וְהַחֹ֗דֶשׁ אֲשֶׁר֩ נֶהְפַּ֨ךְ לָהֶ֤ם מִיָּגוֹן֙ לְשִׂמְחָ֔ה וּמֵאֵ֖בֶל לְי֣וֹם ט֑וֹב לַעֲשׂ֣וֹת אוֹתָ֗ם יְמֵי֙ מִשְׁתֶּ֣ה וְשִׂמְחָ֔ה וּמִשְׁל֤וֹחַ מָנוֹת֙ אִ֣ישׁ לְרֵעֵ֔הוּ וּמַתָּנ֖וֹת לָֽאֶבְיוֹנִֽים׃ (כג) וְקִבֵּל֙ הַיְּהוּדִ֔ים אֵ֥ת אֲשֶׁר־הֵחֵ֖לּוּ לַעֲשׂ֑וֹת וְאֵ֛ת אֲשֶׁר־כָּתַ֥ב מָרְדֳּכַ֖י אֲלֵיהֶֽם׃ (כד) כִּי֩ הָמָ֨ן בֶּֽן־הַמְּדָ֜תָא הָֽאֲגָגִ֗י צֹרֵר֙ כָּל־הַיְּהוּדִ֔ים חָשַׁ֥ב עַל־הַיְּהוּדִ֖ים לְאַבְּדָ֑ם וְהִפִּ֥יל פּוּר֙ ה֣וּא הַגּוֹרָ֔ל לְהֻמָּ֖ם וּֽלְאַבְּדָֽם׃ (כה) וּבְבֹאָהּ֮ לִפְנֵ֣י הַמֶּלֶךְ֒ אָמַ֣ר עִם־הַסֵּ֔פֶר יָשׁ֞וּב מַחֲשַׁבְתּ֧וֹ הָרָעָ֛ה אֲשֶׁר־חָשַׁ֥ב עַל־הַיְּהוּדִ֖ים עַל־רֹאשׁ֑וֹ וְתָל֥וּ אֹת֛וֹ וְאֶת־בָּנָ֖יו עַל־הָעֵֽץ׃ (כו) עַל־כֵּ֡ן קָֽרְאוּ֩ לַיָּמִ֨ים הָאֵ֤לֶּה פוּרִים֙ עַל־שֵׁ֣ם הַפּ֔וּר עַל־כֵּ֕ן עַל־כָּל־דִּבְרֵ֖י הָאִגֶּ֣רֶת הַזֹּ֑את וּמָֽה־רָא֣וּ עַל־כָּ֔כָה וּמָ֥ה הִגִּ֖יעַ אֲלֵיהֶֽם׃ (כז) קִיְּמ֣וּ וקבל [וְקִבְּל֣וּ] הַיְּהוּדִים֩ ׀ עֲלֵיהֶ֨ם ׀ וְעַל־זַרְעָ֜ם וְעַ֨ל כָּל־הַנִּלְוִ֤ים עֲלֵיהֶם֙ וְלֹ֣א יַעֲב֔וֹר לִהְי֣וֹת עֹשִׂ֗ים אֵ֣ת שְׁנֵ֤י הַיָּמִים֙ הָאֵ֔לֶּה כִּכְתָבָ֖ם וְכִזְמַנָּ֑ם בְּכָל־שָׁנָ֖ה וְשָׁנָֽה׃ (כח) וְהַיָּמִ֣ים הָ֠אֵלֶּה נִזְכָּרִ֨ים וְנַעֲשִׂ֜ים בְּכָל־דּ֣וֹר וָד֗וֹר מִשְׁפָּחָה֙ וּמִשְׁפָּחָ֔ה מְדִינָ֥ה וּמְדִינָ֖ה וְעִ֣יר וָעִ֑יר וִימֵ֞י הַפּוּרִ֣ים הָאֵ֗לֶּה לֹ֤א יַֽעַבְרוּ֙ מִתּ֣וֹךְ הַיְּהוּדִ֔ים וְזִכְרָ֖ם לֹא־יָס֥וּף מִזַּרְעָֽם׃ (ס) (כט) וַ֠תִּכְתֹּב אֶסְתֵּ֨ר הַמַּלְכָּ֧ה בַת־אֲבִיחַ֛יִל וּמָרְדֳּכַ֥י הַיְּהוּדִ֖י אֶת־כָּל־תֹּ֑קֶף לְקַיֵּ֗ם אֵ֣ת אִגֶּ֧רֶת הַפּוּרִ֛ים הַזֹּ֖את הַשֵּׁנִֽית׃ (ל) וַיִּשְׁלַ֨ח סְפָרִ֜ים אֶל־כָּל־הַיְּהוּדִ֗ים אֶל־שֶׁ֨בַע וְעֶשְׂרִ֤ים וּמֵאָה֙ מְדִינָ֔ה מַלְכ֖וּת אֲחַשְׁוֵר֑וֹשׁ דִּבְרֵ֥י שָׁל֖וֹם וֶאֱמֶֽת׃ (לא) לְקַיֵּ֡ם אֵת־יְמֵי֩ הַפֻּרִ֨ים הָאֵ֜לֶּה בִּזְמַנֵּיהֶ֗ם כַּאֲשֶׁר֩ קִיַּ֨ם עֲלֵיהֶ֜ם מָרְדֳּכַ֤י הַיְּהוּדִי֙ וְאֶסְתֵּ֣ר הַמַּלְכָּ֔ה וְכַאֲשֶׁ֛ר קִיְּמ֥וּ עַל־נַפְשָׁ֖ם וְעַל־זַרְעָ֑ם דִּבְרֵ֥י הַצֹּמ֖וֹת וְזַעֲקָתָֽם׃ (לב) וּמַאֲמַ֣ר אֶסְתֵּ֔ר קִיַּ֕ם דִּבְרֵ֥י הַפֻּרִ֖ים הָאֵ֑לֶּה וְנִכְתָּ֖ב בַּסֵּֽפֶר׃ (פ)
(1) And so, on the thirteenth day of the twelfth month—that is, the month of Adar—when the king’s command and decree were to be executed, the very day on which the enemies of the Jews had expected to get them in their power, the opposite happened, and the Jews got their enemies in their power. (2) Throughout the provinces of King Ahasuerus, the Jews mustered in their cities to attack those who sought their hurt; and no one could withstand them, for the fear of them had fallen upon all the peoples. (3) Indeed, all the officials of the provinces—the satraps, the governors, and the king’s stewards—showed deference to the Jews, because the fear of Mordecai had fallen upon them. (4) For Mordecai was now powerful in the royal palace, and his fame was spreading through all the provinces; the man Mordecai was growing ever more powerful. (5) So the Jews struck at their enemies with the sword, slaying and destroying; they wreaked their will upon their enemies. (6) In the fortress Shushan the Jews killed a total of five hundred men. (7) They also killed Parshandatha, Dalphon, Aspatha, (8) Poratha, Adalia, Aridatha, (9) Parmashta, Arisai, Aridai, and Vaizatha, (10) the ten sons of Haman son of Hammedatha, the foe of the Jews. But they did not lay hands on the spoil. (11) When the number of those slain in the fortress Shushan was reported on that same day to the king, (12) the king said to Queen Esther, “In the fortress Shushan alone the Jews have killed a total of five hundred men, as well as the ten sons of Haman. What then must they have done in the provinces of the realm! What is your wish now? It shall be granted you. And what else is your request? It shall be fulfilled.” (13) “If it please Your Majesty,” Esther replied, “let the Jews in Shushan be permitted to act tomorrow also as they did today; and let Haman’s ten sons be impaled on the stake.” (14) The king ordered that this should be done, and the decree was proclaimed in Shushan. Haman’s ten sons were impaled: (15) and the Jews in Shushan mustered again on the fourteenth day of Adar and slew three hundred men in Shushan. But they did not lay hands on the spoil. (16) The rest of the Jews, those in the king’s provinces, likewise mustered and fought for their lives. They disposed of their enemies, killing seventy-five thousand of their foes; but they did not lay hands on the spoil. (17) That was on the thirteenth day of the month of Adar; and they rested on the fourteenth day and made it a day of feasting and merrymaking. ( (18) But the Jews in Shushan mustered on both the thirteenth and fourteenth days, and so rested on the fifteenth, and made it a day of feasting and merrymaking.) (19) That is why village Jews, who live in unwalled towns, observe the fourteenth day of the month of Adar and make it a day of merrymaking and feasting, and as a holiday and an occasion for sending gifts to one another. (20) Mordecai recorded these events. And he sent dispatches to all the Jews throughout the provinces of King Ahasuerus, near and far, (21) charging them to observe the fourteenth and fifteenth days of Adar, every year— (22) the same days on which the Jews enjoyed relief from their foes and the same month which had been transformed for them from one of grief and mourning to one of festive joy. They were to observe them as days of feasting and merrymaking, and as an occasion for sending gifts to one another and presents to the poor. (23) The Jews accordingly assumed as an obligation that which they had begun to practice and which Mordecai prescribed for them. (24) For Haman son of Hammedatha the Agagite, the foe of all the Jews, had plotted to destroy the Jews, and had cast pur—that is, the lot—with intent to crush and exterminate them. (25) But when [Esther] came before the king, he commanded: “With the promulgation of this decree, let the evil plot, which he devised against the Jews, recoil on his own head!” So they impaled him and his sons on the stake. (26) For that reason these days were named Purim, after pur. In view, then, of all the instructions in the said letter and of what they had experienced in that matter and what had befallen them, (27) the Jews undertook and irrevocably obligated themselves and their descendants, and all who might join them, to observe these two days in the manner prescribed and at the proper time each year. (28) Consequently, these days are recalled and observed in every generation: by every family, every province, and every city. And these days of Purim shall never cease among the Jews, and the memory of them shall never perish among their descendants. (29) Then Queen Esther daughter of Abihail wrote a second letter of Purim for the purpose of confirming with full authority the aforementioned one of Mordecai the Jew. (30) Dispatches were sent to all the Jews in the hundred and twenty-seven provinces of the realm of Ahasuerus with an ordinance of “equity and honesty:” (31) These days of Purim shall be observed at their proper time, as Mordecai the Jew—and now Queen Esther—has obligated them to do, and just as they have assumed for themselves and their descendants the obligation of the fasts with their lamentations. (32) And Esther’s ordinance validating these observances of Purim was recorded in a scroll.
7 ז

אמר רבי חנינא בר פפא דרש ר' שילא איש כפר תמרתא כל השירות כולן נכתבות אריח על גבי לבינה ולבינה על גבי אריח חוץ משירה זו ומלכי כנען שאריח על גבי אריח ולבינה על גבי לבינה מ"ט שלא תהא תקומה למפלתן

Rabbi Ḥanina bar Pappa said that Rabbi Sheila, a man of the village of Timarta, interpreted a verse homiletically: All of the songs in the Bible are written in the form of a half brick arranged upon a whole brick and a whole brick arranged upon a half brick, The next line of the song inverts the sequence. This is the principle for all songs in the Bible except for this song, referring to the list of Haman’s sons, and the song listing the kings of Canaan who were defeated by Joshua. These two songs are written in the form of a half brick arranged upon a half brick and a whole brick arranged upon a whole brick, i.e., one stitch of text over another, and one blank space over another. What is the reason that these two songs are written in this anomalous fashion? So that they should never rise from their downfall.

8 ח

אמר רב שמואל בר יהודה שלחה להם אסתר לחכמים קבעוני לדורות שלחו לה קנאה את מעוררת עלינו לבין האומות שלחה להם כבר כתובה אני על דברי הימים למלכי מדי ופרס ... שלחה להם אסתר לחכמים כתבוני לדורות שלחו לה (משלי כב, כ) הלא כתבתי לך שלישים שלישים ולא רבעים עד שמצאו לו מקרא כתוב בתורה (שמות יז, יד) כתב זאת זכרון בספר כתב זאת מה שכתוב כאן ובמשנה תורה זכרון מה שכתוב בנביאים בספר מה שכתוב במגלה

Rav Shmuel bar Yehuda said: Esther sent to the Sages: Establish me for future generations. They sent to her: You will thereby arouse the wrath of the nations upon us, She sent back to them: I am already written in the chronicles of the kings of Media and Persia, ... Esther sent to the Sages: Write me for future generations and canonize my book as part of the Bible. They sent to her that it is written: “Have I not written for you three times” (Proverbs 22:20), indicating that Israel’s battle with Amalek is to be mentioned three times in the Bible and not four times? Since it is already mentioned three times (Exodus 17:8–16; Deuteronomy 25:17–19; I Samuel 15), there is no need to add a fourth source. The Sages did not accede to Esther’s request until they found a verse written in the Torah: “Write this for a memorial in the book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: “Write this,” that which is written in the Torah here in Exodus, and in Deuteronomy; “a memorial,” that which is written in the Prophets, i.e., in I Samuel, on this matter; “in the book,” that which is written in the Megilla.

9 ט
וַיֹּ֣אמֶר נְחֶמְיָ֣ה ה֣וּא הַתִּרְשָׁ֡תָא וְעֶזְרָ֣א הַכֹּהֵ֣ן ׀ הַסֹּפֵ֡ר וְהַלְוִיִּם֩ הַמְּבִינִ֨ים אֶת־הָעָ֜ם לְכָל־הָעָ֗ם הַיּ֤וֹם קָדֹֽשׁ־הוּא֙ לַה' אֱלֹקֵיכֶ֔ם אַל־תִּֽתְאַבְּל֖וּ וְאַל־תִּבְכּ֑וּ כִּ֤י בוֹכִים֙ כָּל־הָעָ֔ם כְּשָׁמְעָ֖ם אֶת־דִּבְרֵ֥י הַתּוֹרָֽה׃ וַיֹּ֣אמֶר לָהֶ֡ם לְכוּ֩ אִכְל֨וּ מַשְׁמַנִּ֜ים וּשְׁת֣וּ מַֽמְתַקִּ֗ים וְשִׁלְח֤וּ מָנוֹת֙ לְאֵ֣ין נָכ֣וֹן ל֔וֹ כִּֽי־קָד֥וֹשׁ הַיּ֖וֹם לַאֲדֹנֵ֑ינוּ וְאַל־תֵּ֣עָצֵ֔בוּ כִּֽי־חֶדְוַ֥ת ה' הִ֥יא מָֽעֻזְּכֶֽם׃ וְהַלְוִיִּ֞ם מַחְשִׁ֤ים לְכָל־הָעָם֙ לֵאמֹ֣ר הַ֔סּוּ כִּ֥י הַיּ֖וֹם קָדֹ֑שׁ וְאַל־תֵּעָצֵֽבוּ׃ וַיֵּלְכ֨וּ כָל־הָעָ֜ם לֶאֱכֹ֤ל וְלִשְׁתּוֹת֙ וּלְשַׁלַּ֣ח מָנ֔וֹת וְלַעֲשׂ֖וֹת שִׂמְחָ֣ה גְדוֹלָ֑ה כִּ֤י הֵבִ֙ינוּ֙ בַּדְּבָרִ֔ים אֲשֶׁ֥ר הוֹדִ֖יעוּ לָהֶֽם׃ (ס)
Nehemiah the Tirshatha, Ezra the priest and scribe, and the Levites who were explaining to the people said to all the people, “This day is holy to the LORD your God: you must not mourn or weep,” for all the people were weeping as they listened to the words of the Teaching. He further said to them, “Go, eat choice foods and drink sweet drinks and send portions to whoever has nothing prepared, for the day is holy to our Lord. Do not be sad, for your rejoicing in the LORD is the source of your strength.” The Levites were quieting the people, saying, “Hush, for the day is holy; do not be sad.” Then all the people went to eat and drink and send portions and make great merriment, for they understood the things they were told.