Biblical Period 1 – Judah to Reu

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GGF81 – Judah [or Juda or Judas] ben Jacob, ‘the Israelite’ (1,870-1,676 BCE)

Portrait of Judah (1840)
by Horace Vernet

Genesis lists Judah as the fourth of the six sons of the patriarch Jacob and his wife Leah, and the founder of the Tribe of Judah. He is also the eponym for the kingdom and land of Judea and for the word ‘Jew’.

Judah married the daughter of Shua, a Canaanite, they had three sons Er, Onan and Shelah. Tamar first married Er, but he was killed by God for wickedness, then marries Inan who will not comply to provided his dead elder brother an heir so he too was killed.

Judah had further children by other wives and concubines, including Jacob (of Technicolor Dreamcoat fame).

Tamar,Judah’s daughter-in-law, posed as a prostitute and conceivesd twins, Pharez and Zerah, who founded the Davidic lineage. Pharez has a direct lineage to King David and to Jesus Christ. And, as we saw, it was Zerah and Dardanus that linked this Biblical Period with the Trojan Period.

Judah and his brothers in Genesis 37 cast Joseph into a pit, through jealousy of his flamboyant coat.It is Judah who sold Joseph to apassing caravan for transportation to Egypt. Joseph returns twenty years later having built a position of power in Egypt, his brothers do not recognise himand he taunts them before revealing his identitiy.

Judah’s tomb in Yahud, Israel

Muslim and Samaritan traditions place Judah’s tomb in present day Yehud in eastern Israel (see picture above). Other traditions, like that of the Druz, place his tomb near Horvat Omrit in the Hula Valley in northern Israel .


GGF82 – Jacob Israel ben Isaac, Prophet, King of Goshen (1,892-1,745 BCE)

Jacob was born as one of twins to Isaac ben Abraham (1,922-1,742 BCE) and Rebeccah bint Bethuel (1,912-1,720 BCE). Rebeccah had an uncomfortable pregnancy which God explained ot her was because the two babies were fighting in her womb,andthis wouldcontinue through their life. His twin was Esau, who was born first, born covered in red hair, with his twin, Jacob, grasping his heel.

Esau worked in the field and was favoured by his father. Esau asked for some of Jacob’s food (bread and a lentil stew) and agreed to sell his first-born birthright to Jacob in return for the food. Jacob of course readily agreed.

Jacob was later given the additional name of Israel because his twelve sons became the founders of the Twelve Tribes of Israel.

Jacob had two wives Leah bint Laban and Rachel bint Laban, and two concubines. Bilhah and Zilpah who delivered him twelve sonsight children, Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Dan, Naphtali, Gad, Asher, Isaachar, Zebulun, Joseph and Benjamin and a daughter Dinah. Jacob reportedly exhibited preferences, with Rachel and her sons Jacob and Benjamin being most favoured. This andthe Dreamcoat was what prompted his brothers to sell off Jacob.

Jacob’s Dream by William Blake
(c. 1800, British Museum, London)

On one occasion Jacob experienced a vision, he saw a staircase, reaching into heaven with angels going up and down it, commonly referred to as ‘Jacob’s ladder’. He heard the voice of God, who repeated many of the blessings upon him, coming from the top of the ladder.


GGF83 – Isaac ben Abraham (1,922-1,742 BCE)

Isaac was the son of Abraham and Sarah (1,912-1,770 BCE), he was born well after the parents’ normal childbearing years. He became one of the three patriarchs of the Israelites, and was reputedly the longest-lived of the patriarchs living to the age of 180.

Isaac embraces his father Abraham after the ‘Binding of Isaac’. Early 1900s Bible illustration.

During his youth, though some sources say he was 37, Isaac was taken by his father and bound onto a sacrificial altar at God’s request. But when Abraham was about to kill him, an angel appeared and rescinded the instruction.

When Isaac was approaching 40 years old, Abraham sent his steward to Mesopotamia to find him a wife. The steward selected an Aramain from Abraham’s extended family, she was the daughter of Bethuel.

Isaac was sixty before Rebeccah delivered him the twins Esau and Jacob. In his dotage Isaac became blind. Rebecca and Jacob deliberately misled Isaac by dressing up as Esau and receiving a blessing intended for him, this promoted Jacob to the status of first-born from his father’s perspective. Much earlier Esau had already sold his birthright to Jacob in return for food (see above).

According to local tradition, the graves of Isaac and Rebeccah, along with the graves of Abraham and Sarah and of Jacob and all , are in the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron.


GGF84 – Abraham  [or Avraham or Ibrahim] ben Terah (2,052-1,877 BCE)

Abraham is the patriarch of Christianity, Islam and Judaism. In Judaism he is the founding patriarch, in Christianity he is the preogenitor of all believers, in Islam he is one of a series of prophets that began with Noah and culminated with Muhammed.

He was born as Abram in Ur, the son of Terah (2,162-1,921 BCE) and Amathlal (2,162-1,921 BCE)

He married Sarai bint Haran who was initially barren. Genesis 20:12 has Abraham reveal Sarah to be both his wife and his half-sister, stating that the two shared a father but not a mother.

Abraham accompanied his father on the journey from Ur to Canaan, but they stopped at the city of Haran, where Terah died. Abram, at 75 years old, took his wife Sarai, his nephew Lot, and the wealth and slaves that they had acquired, and travelled on to Shechem in Canaan. But a famine saw them have to travel onto Egypt.

They later returned to Canaan, after having lived there for ten years and still childless, Sarai suggested that Abram have a child with her Egyptian handmaiden Hagar. He agreed and they had a son called Ishmael.

At age 99 God told Abraham he would have a child with Sarah, both putative parents laughed. But, Abram had a vision and they made a covenant with God, they were renamed by him as Abraham and Sarah, and they soon had a son, Isaac (meaning laughter) (1,922-1,742 BCE). Abraham was tested by God when he ordered him to sacrificeIsaac.

Abrham about to sacrifice Isaac

In Genesis 15 God described the land that Abrhamand his followers could claim as ‘the land of the Kenites, Kenizzites, Kadmonites, Hittites, Perizzites, Rephaites, Amorites, Canaanites, Girgashites and Jebusites’.

Friction between Ishmael and Isaacled Sarah to have Isaac’s birthright confirmed.

Sarah is the only woman in the Hebrew scriptures whose age is stated, she was 127 years old when she died. After Sarah’s death Abraham married (some sources suggest he took her a s a concubine) Keturah [or Qatura or Ceturah] and had at least six more children-Zimran, Jokshan, Medan, Ishbak, Shuah and Midlan [or Madlan].

Abrahan died at 175 years old,


GGF85 – Terah [or Terih or Terach] ben Nahor, King of Agade (2,122-1,917 BCE)

The Book of Joshua talking of the formation of the Israelite nation, says it began with ‘Terah the father of Abraham and Nahor, [who] lived beyond the Euphrates River [in Ur] and worshiped other gods.’ Hewas tenth in descent from Noah.

from Promptuarii Iconum Insigniorum
an iconography book by
Guillaume Rouillé

Terah is mentioned in Genesis 11:26–27 as the son of Nahor, the son of Serug and a direct descendant of Shem. Terah is mentioned in both the Old and New Testaments.

Who he married is not mentioned in the Bible, but Talmud Sages say it was Amathlai of Agade [or Amathlaah, aka Edna], daughter of Karnebo. They had a son. Abraham.

With other wives/concubines Terah had two more sons Nahor and Haran, and a daughter Sarah. These were with Tahwait of Egypt, Pelilah and Maria. One of Terah’s grandchildren, via Haran, was Lot.

Terah manufactured idols, Abram disliked the idol shop, damaging idols and driving customers away. Terah took him to Nimrod, a community leader, and Nimrod threw Abram into a fiery furnace, yet he survived and his father relented. [Nimrod is identiedas the leader who commissioned the Tower of Babel.]

In Islam, Abram’s father is believed to have been a highly evil, ignorant and wicked man, who refused to listen to the constant advice of his wise son.

Terah was taking his family to live in Canaan, but instead settled at the city of Haran. where he died. Abraham continued his father’s quest (see above).


GGF86 – Nahor ben Serug, King of Ur and Agade (2,151-2,003 BCE)

He was born and raised in the Sumerian city-state of Ur on the Euphrates River of lower Mesopotamia.

from Promptuarii Iconum Insigniorum an iconography book by
Guillaume Rouillé

Nahor first married Jaska (or Ijasdka or Iyoska) bet Nestag, of the kin of Ur Kasdim, a son of Arpachshad for whom Ur was named. They had three children, Terah, Sulgi and Dungi.

Nahor also married Milcah bet Haran with whom he had Uz, Buz, Kemuel,Kesed, Hazo,Pildash, Jidaph and Bethuel. Bethuel was the father of Rebeccah who would marry Isaac.

Genesis 11:22-23 says ‘And Serug lived thirty years, and begat Nahor: And Serug lived after he begat Nahor two hundred years, and begat sons and daughters.

He lived to be 148 years old,


GGF87 – Serug (or Saragh or Saruch) ben Reu, King of Ur and Agade (2,181-1,953 BCE)

Serug was born in Ur to Reu and Ora bat Ur. They had four children De Ur, Nahor, Nammu and Engur.

from Promptuarii Iconum Insigniorum an iconography book by
Guillaume Rouillé

Serug was the first of the patriarchal line toreject monotheism and instead espoused idol worship,

Genesis 11:20-21 says ‘And Reu lived two and thirty years, and begat Serug: And Reu lived after he begat Serug two hundred and seven years, and begat sons and daughters.


GGF88 – Reu ( or Ragau or Rau) ben Pelag, King of Lagash (2,231-1,974 BCE)

Reu was born in Jerusalem to Pelag (or Phaleg or Peleg), the King of Babylon and Lomna (or Lamna) of Sina’ar.

from Promptuarii Iconum Insigniorum an iconography book by
Guillaume Rouillé

He married Ora bat Ur, who wasborn in Lagash (Iraq). They had only one son we could discover, Serug.

Reu died in Ur at just 39 years of age.

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