A priest and scribe in Jerusalem after the Return from Exile. An account of Ezra appears in the books of Ezra (7–10) and Nehemiah (8–9), and it appears that the activities of these two leaders overlapped. One suggestion is that Nehemiah preceded Ezra, whose activity would then be placed in the time of Artaxerxes II (404–358 BCE). But the usual understanding is that Ezra led the community in restoring the Temple and maintaining the racial purity of the nation (Ezra 9–10) in the reign of Artaxerxes I (465–424 BCE). There was a legend that he dictated from memory ninety‐four holy books that had been lost in Exile.