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  The Book of Esther 15 September 2005  
A feature exploring the woman behind the biblical story

Esther is the central Jewish character of the Bible's eponymous Book of Esther. Extraordinarily beautiful she's supposed to have used her feminine wiles to capture the heart of the Persian King Xerxes and persuade him to free her people from the threat of death. Some see the story as based on historical fact and others as a kind of allegory.

In her recent first novel, The Gilded Chamber, the writer Rebecca Kohn decided to recreate Esther 's story and bring this courageous figure to life for a contemporary audience.

Woman's Hour reporter Judy Merry speaks to Rebecca Kohn , the Reverend Angela Tilby and the art critic Rachel Campbell-Johnston.
The Gilded Chamber by Rebecca Kohn, published by Penguin Books Ltd - ISBN: 0141020504

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