2:7 Mordecai [a Jew from the tribe of Benjamin who lived in Susa, the winter location for the Persian King Ahasuerus’ palace; Mordecai exiled in Persia] had a cousin named Hadassah [name means “myrtle”], whom he had brought up [Mordecai was her legal guardian] because she had neither father nor mother. This girl, who was also known as Esther [name means “star”], was lovely in form and features, and Mordecai had taken her as his own daughter when her father and mother died.
2:17 Now the king was attracted to Esther [underwent a beauty treatment along with the other virgins (cf. 2:3,9,12)] more than to any of the other women [the virgins who appeared before him in his search for a new queen], and she won his favor and approval more than any of the other virgins. So he set a royal crown on her head and made her queen instead of Vashti [removed as queen because she refused to display her physical beauty before her husband’s drunken dinner guests (cf. 1:12)].