The great mourning of Mordecai and the Jews.
Esther 4:1 When Mardocheus perceaued all þt was done, he rente his clothes and put on sack cloth, with asshes, and went out into the myddes of the cytie, and cryed loud and lamentably, Esther 4:2 & came before the kynges gate: but he myght not entre within þe kynges gate, because he had sack cloth on. Esther 4:3 And in all landes, countrees, & places, as farre as the kynges worde and commaundment extended, there was greate lamentacion among the Iewes, fasting, weping, and mourning, and many laye in sack clothes & in asshes.
Esther, understanding it, sendeth to Mordecai, who sheweth the cause, and adviseth her to understand the suit.
Esther 4:4 So Esthers damosels and her chamberlaynes, came & told it her. Then was the quene exceadyngly astonnied. And she sent rayment, that Mardocheus shulde put on, and laye the sack cloth from him. But Mardocheus wold not take them. Esther 4:5 Then called Esther Hathath one of the kynges chamberlaynes (whych stode before her) and gaue him a commaundment vnto Mardocheus, þt he might knowe what it were, wherfore he dyd so. Esther 4:6 So Hathat went forth to Mardocheus vnto the strete of þe cytie, whych was before the kynges gate. Esther 4:7 And Mardocheus tolde him of all þt had happened vnto him, and of the summe of syluer þt Haman had promised to weye downe into þe kynges treasury, because of þe Iewes yf he wolde destroye them Esther 4:8 (& he gaue hym the copye of the kynges commaundement, that was deuysed at Susan, to destroye them, that he might shewe it vnto Esther) and to speake to her, and charge her, that she shuld go into the kyng, and make her prayer and supplicacion vnto him for her people. Esther 4:9 And when Hathath came in, he told Esther the wordes of Mardocheus.
She excusing herself is threatened by Mordecai.
Esther 4:10 And agayne, Esther spake vnto Hathath, & commaunded him to saye vnto Mardocheus: Esther 4:11 all the kynges seruauntes, & the people in the landes of the kynge, knowe that whosoeuer commeth within the court vnto the kyng, whether it be man or woman, whych is not called, þe commaundment is, þt the same shall dye, excepte the kynge holde out the golden scepter vnto him for then he shall lyue. As for me, I haue not bene called to come into the kyng now this thyrtie dayes. Esther 4:12 And they certifyed Mardocheus of Esthers wordes, Esther 4:13 & Mardocheus bad saye agayne vnto Esther, thynke not to saue thyne awne lyfe, while thou art in þe kynges house, before all Iewes: Esther 4:14 for yf þu holdest thy peace at this tyme, then shall the Iewes haue helpe and deliueraunce out of another place, & thou & thy fathers house shalbe destroyed. And who knoweth whether thou art come to the kyngdom, for this causes sake?
She appointing a fast undertaketh the suit.
Esther 4:15 Esther had them geue Mardocheus this answer: Esther 4:16 Go thou thy waye, and gether together all the Iewes that are found at Susan, and fast ye for me, that ye eat not and drynke not in thre dayes, nether daye nor nyght. I and my damosels will fast lykewise, and so will I go into the kyng, which thing yet, is contrary to the commaundment: and yf I perishe, I perishe. Esther 4:17 So Mardocheus went his waye, & dyd all that Esther had commaunded him.