A scribe was a member of an elite group of trained men, around the time of Christ, who were writers. They were knowledgeable in The Law of Moses as well as rabbinic traditions. Scribes were capable of reading The Law to people, which was a valuable service since most people could not read or write.
"In the ancient Near East the designation ‘scribe’ covered a variety of offices from that of the local scribe who copied documents and contracts for the people to government officials invested with serious responsibilities.Like the modern secretary, the scribe was generally concerned with written records, bureaucracy, and administration."1
- 1. Achtemeier, P. J., Harper & Row, P., & Society of Biblical Literature. (1985). Harper's Bible dictionary. Includes index. (1st ed.) (914). San Francisco: Harper & Row."