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American Tract Society Bible Dictionary


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A celebrated priest and leader of the Jewish nation. He was "a ready scribe in the law," a learned, able, and faithful man, and appears to have enjoyed great consideration in the Persian court. During the eighty years embraced in his narrative, most of the reign of Cyrus passed, and the whole reign of Cambyses, Smerdis, Darius Hystaspis, Xerxes, and eight years of Artaxerxes Longimanus. From this last king he received letters, money, and every desirable help, and went at the head of a large party of returning exiles to Jerusalem, B. C. 457. Here he instituted many reforms in the conduct of the people, and in the public worship, Ezra 8:1-10:44 Nehemiah 8:1-18 . After this he is generally believed to have collected and revised all the books of the Old Testament Scripture, which form the present canon.

The BOOK OF EZRA contains a history of the return of the Jews from the time of Cyrus; with an account of his own subsequent proceedings, B. C. 450. There are two apocryphal books ascribed to him under the name of Esdras, which is only the Greek form of the name Ezra.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain and are a derivative of the topics are from American Tract Society Bible Dictionary published in 1859.

Bibliography Information
Rand, W. W. Entry for 'Ezra'. American Tract Society Bible Dictionary. 1859.

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