(Greek form of Ezra ), The First Book of, the first in order of the apocryphal books in the English Bible. The first chapter is a transcript of the last two chapters of 2 Chron., for the most part verbatim , and only in one or two parts slightly abridged and paraphrased. Chapters 3,4, and 5 to the end of ver. 6, are the original portions of the book, and the rest is a transcript more or less exact of the book of Ezra, with the chapters transposed and quite otherwise arranged, and a portion of Nehemiah. Hence a twofold design in the compiler is discernible --one to introduce and give scriptural sanction to the legend about Zerubbabel; the other to explain the great obscurities of the book of Ezra, in which, however, he has signally failed. Its author is unknown, and it was probably written in Egypt. It has no historical value.
Bibliography InformationSmith, William, Dr. "Entry for 'Esdras'". "Smith's Bible Dictionary".