In 355 BCE, Haman, the villain of the Purim story, was hanged (Esther 7:10). Haman promulgated a decree to annihilate the entire Jewish people, but when the plot was foiled by Queen Esther, Haman and his 10 sons were hanged from the gallows that Haman had originally built to hang Mordechai. As further irony, King Achashverosh appointed Mordechai to replace Haman as prime minister of the kingdom. Haman was descended from Amalek, the biblical nation that is the antithesis of the Jewish message of ethics and morality. On Purim, the Book of Esther is read publicly, and much noise is raised at every mention of Haman's name, symbolically stamping out his memory.
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