Ahasuerus, King (ah-HOSH-vair-oash)

Ahasuerus, King (ah-HOSH-vair-oash) The ruler of ancient Persia (486-465 b.c.e) during the time of the Purim story. According to the Purim megillah, Ahasuerus was a foolish king who allowed his adviser, Haman, to hatch a plot against the Jews. Ahasuerus was first married to Queen Vashti. He later took a Jewish girl, Esther, as his bride.

b.c.e n. English The abbreviation for “Before the Common Era.” When writing the date, Jews often use the religiously neutral b.c.e. in place of b.c. (Before Christ). This is because Jews don’t believe that Jesus Christ is the Messiah, although they do measure time according to the year of his birth. For example, a Jew might write, “The destruction of the First Temple was in 586 b.c.e.” 586 b.c.e. is identical to 586 b.c.

Eisenberg, J., Scolnic, E., & Jewish Publication Society. (2001). The JPS dictionary of Jewish words. Over 1000 entries for Jewish holidays and life-cycle events, culture, history, the Bible and other sacred texts, and worship. Each entry has a pronunciation guide and is cross-referenced to related terms.; “A JPS desk reference”–cover. (3). Philadelphia, PA: Jewish Publication Society.

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