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1 Xerxes I, who ruled 486–465 BCE and is known from Greek history for his attempts at conquering the Greek mainland. He is probably the ruler referred to in (Ezra 4:6) (there called Ahasuerus, from the Persian form of his name) who received a complaint against the Jews who had returned to Palestine from the exile. He might also be the ruler indicated in (Dan 9:1), where an Ahasuerus is mentioned as the father of Darius the Mede (but see 2). The Persian ruler of the book of Esther (e.g., Esth 1:1 there called Ahasuerus or Artaxerxes) may also be Xerxes I. 2 Xerxes II, 425 BCE, who succeeded Artaxerxes I (the son of Xerxes I) but was assassinated almost immediately. He is probably not referred to in the Bible, unless the reference in (Dan 9:1) is to him rather than to Xerxes I.

  • Powell, Mark Allan, ed. HarperCollins Bible Dictionary. Abridged Edition. Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2009.