Known also as Xerxes I, Ahasuerus ruled over the Persian Empire from 486 to 465 BC. At that time the Jews had returned from exile and the temple in Jerusalem had been rebuilt (completed in 516 BC). The completion of the city walls, however, awaited the governorship of Nehemiah (who arrived in Jerusalem in 445 BC). Ahasuerus is therefore not involved in the events narrated in the books of Ezra and Nehemiah, though he is referred to in Ezra 4:6. He is the king who features in the story of Esther. (For further details see ESTHER; PERSIA.)

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