1 And the king Achashveirosh laid a tribute upon the land, and upon the isles of the sea.
א וַיָּשֶׂם הַמֶּלֶךְ אחשרש (אֲחַשְׁוֵרֹשׁ) מַס עַל הָאָרֶץ וְאִיֵּי הַיָּם.
2 And all the acts of his power and of his might, and the full account of the greatness of Mordechai, how the king advanced him, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Media and Persia?
3 For Mordechai the Yehudi was next unto king Achashveirosh, and great among the Yehudim, and accepted of the multitude of his brethren; seeking the good of his people and speaking peace to all his seed.
According to one opinion among the Sages, this verse describes two stages of Mordecai’s life following the ‘Purim’ miracle. He was “next unto king Ahasuerus” until Darius, son of Esther and Ahasuerus, allowed the rebuilding of the Temple. At that point, he stepped down from his government position and became “great among the Jews,” as he was in charge of the bird offerings in the Temple. Mordecai did not let honor and fame stand in the way of his principles. Dismissing the glory, he preferred to serve his people in the Land of Israel.