We present vertical profiles of the aerosol extinction coefficient retrieved from ground-based Multi-Axis Differential Optical Absorption Spectroscopy (MAX-DOAS) measurements at Tsukuba, Japan (36.1° N, 140.1°E), from November 2006 to March 2007. Retrievals utilizing absorption by the oxygen collision complex O4 are first made at two wavelengths, 354 and 476 nm. A robust assessment of the MAX-DOAS aerosol data is then made using coincident lidar measurements throughout the period. Agreement between aerosol extinction coefficients measured by MAXDOAS and the lidar tends to be better at the longer wavelength and at lower altitudes. At 476 nm, the best agreement, to within 30%, is found at altitudes of 0-1 km, confirming results from a literature assessment for a two-month measurement period. These findings are supported by comparisons between aerosol optical depths derived from MAX-DOAS and sky radiometer measurements and are further explained by differences in the altitude-dependent measurement sensitivity to the aerosol extinction coefficient between 354 and 476 nm. Thus, uncertainty in MAX-DOAS aerosol measurements is well quantified and characterized, providing a basis for quantitative studies using MAX-DOAS measurements.