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The Vanishing Character in Biblical Narrative: The Role of Hathach in Esther 4*

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AbstractLiterary analysis tends to focus on major characters or minor characters as long as their active role in the narrative serves to further the plot. The contribution of minor characters is often viewed as limited to their active role in the narrative. However, sometimes the passive role of a minor character, and even the disappearance of a character from the plot, can serve a valuable literary purpose. This article outlines the nature of the Vanishing Minor Character, whose literary purpose is to disappear at a crucial moment, making room for the remaining characters. The article demonstrates this model using the character of Hathach—the Persian eunuch—who serves as an intermediary between Esther and Mordecai in Esther 4.

Affiliations: 1: Bar Ilan


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