2:6 the queen. This apparently arbitrary reference to the queen may have been inserted because she was Queen Esther. Some scholars believe her husband Ahasuerus was the same as Artaxerxes (both being titles rather than personal names). Others believe Artaxerxes was either Esther’s son or stepson. In any case, the reputation of Artaxerxes was unusually benign for an ancient emperor, and this may have been in part a result of Esther’s influence.