- 1: a member of a learned class in ancient Israel through New Testament times studying the Scriptures and serving as copyists, editors, teachers, and jurists.
- 2: a : an official or public secretary or clerk
- b : a copier of manuscripts
- 3: writer; specifically : journalist
A scribe is a person who writes books or documents by hand as a profession and helps the city keep track of its records. The profession, previously found in all literate cultures in some form, lost most of its importance and status with the advent of printing. The work could involve copying books, including sacred texts, or secretarial and administrative duties such as taking of dictation and the keeping of business, judicial and historical records for kings, nobility, temples and cities. Later the profession developed into public servants, journalists, accountants, typists, and lawyers. In societies with low literacy rates, such as India, street corner letter-writers (and readers) may still be found providing a service.