Hope of Israel Ministries (Ecclesia of YEHOVAH):
Physical Characteristics of True Israelites!
The Scriptures speak of the historic Israelites as a "very fair" people with "ruddy" complexions! Secular history also reveals the same thing. The Israelites of Old Testament pre-captivity times were called "Amorites" by the Gentile nations -- and the Palestinian "Amorites" were definitely a blond, "Nordic" type of people. The northwest European "Nordics" are descendants of these Palestinian "Amorites!" They are, in fact, the children of the dispersed ten-tribed Israel!
by Raymond F. McNair
If, in our search for the Lost Ten Tribes of Israel, we know what type or what kind of people to look for, then we are much more likely to succeed in our difficult task of finding these long-lost tribes.
Before we can trace the people of Israel from the land of their captivity to their present-day homelands, we need to answer this question -- "Just what were the ancient Palestinian Israelites like?" Were they Nordics? Did they look like the "typical Jew" of today? In particular, we are concerned with the ten-tribed House of Israel, whose final captivity occurred, according to Ussher, in 721 B.C. Most people assume that the people of the Ten Tribes resembled the "typical Jew" of today.
Let us notice a few very significant remarks by Dr. Kephart. In his recently published book, Races of Mankind, Their Origin and Migration, we find these interesting statements:
"In comparison with the most recent estimates of roughly 4.5 billion years as the age of this earth, man is a relatively late phenomena of nature. The humanoid stem from which he sprang probably arose on the earth only one or two million years ago, although much higher estimates have appeared recently....The leading authorities agree that all the existing races of mankind had a common origin (chap. 1, p. 1)." [emphasis mine].
He says that man roamed over this earth for many thousands of years before the beginning of recorded history. Dr. Kephart points out that we cannot be certain as to what happened to man "in his evolution during those ages" (ibid., p. 2).
He then makes, a very profound and true statement: "What is legend today may be history tomorrow, just as what is history today may be legend tomorrow" (ibid., pp. 2, 3).
One cannot build a house which will stand upon the shifting sands. Likewise those who try to build their theories on the origins of the races upon the shifting quicksands of Evolution are starting from a false basis and much (if not most) of what they believe, write and teach will be in error.
Again let it be firmly stated that the veracity of the Scriptures has been proven in so many ways, that there is absolutely no doubt whatever that the Bible is accurate historically, as well as an infallible guide revealing to man what his ultimate destiny is to be.
The Old Testament Scriptures, as originally given (of course minor errors have crept into existing manuscripts, consequently no particular translation is 100 per cent accurate), were inspired by Almighty God (II Timothy 3:15, 16) and were, therefore, perfect. The Scripture cannot be broken (John 10:35); consequently if one bases his research and his beliefs upon the solid foundation of the Scripture, his work is sure to have at least an unshakable foundation.
"Lost Ten Tribes" -- Were They Aryan Nordics?
Now we shall notice a flagrant error which the author of this book would have us believe -- an error which is based on the theory of Evolution:
"Variation of color of skin is dependent mainly on climatic conditions, the darkest races having become so by long habitation in low, moist, hot places near the equator and the lighter races having lost skin and eye pigmentation by long habitation in the rigorous dark or hazy climate of the north...." (Kephart, Races of Mankind, Their Origin and Migration, chap. I, p. 66).
Dr. Kephart does, however, realize the importance of the cephalic index in seeking to ascertain racial origins from skeletal remains. He speaks of the cephalic index as "one of the most useful methods of segregating people..." (ibid., p. 66).
Notice how many authors realize the importance of the cephalic index in determining racial affinities.
Now let us notice a statement of Kephart's regarding what the "original Hebrews" were like. Also note carefully what is said concerning the "Lost Tribes of Israel":
"Since the original Hebrews were Kassites of typically Turkic build, i.e., with tawny complexion, of medial height and stocky build, with prominent nose, and brachycephalous [broad-headed], all efforts to identify Aryan Nordic people of Europe as descendants of the Lost Tribes of Israel are doomed to failure. A more futile task is inconceivable" (ibid., fn., p. 150).
Were the Original Israelites Like the "Typical Jew"?
Where did Dr. Kephart learn that "the original Hebrews were Kassites," and of "Turkic build"? How did he come to the conclusion that the original Hebrews had a "tawny complexion," and were of a "medial height," and "stocky build," that they had "prominent nose," and "brachycephalous" (broad) type of head? Yes, where did Dr. Kephart learn all of these fables?
Notice that the author has already revealed his lack of understanding on a number of points and now he propounds the belief that seems to be common among so many people today, that the Lost Tribes of Israel could not be identified with the Aryan, Nordic people of Europe.
Kephart dogmatically states that the people of the Lost Tribes of Israel were people "with tawny complexion, of medial height and stocky build, with prominent nose, and brachycephalous." In other words, Dr. Kephart would have you believe "the original Hebrews" looked like the so-called "typical Jew" of today. But this is merely a human assumption which we shall see exploded from biblical and secular history!
"The peculiar notion advanced by some writers, chiefly religionists, that these dark-complexioned bracycephalic Turanian people were the ancestors of the blond mesocephalic Aryan Anglo-Saxons is too absurd physiologically to receive further notice" (ibid., p. 155).
We shall soon see from the Bible, and also from secular history that the "original Hebrews" (by which Dr Kephart meant the Israelites) were primarily an Aryan or Nordic type people after all!
Speaking of the modern Jews, Dr. Kephart admits that "Today there are Jews of widely different physical types, many largely Aryan in blood" (ibid., p. 157).
Yes, Dr. Kephart admits that many Jews (particularly western Jews) are Aryan in type or race, but he is puzzled as to how they could be "Aryan in blood."
If you were to ask the average man on the street to give you a description of what he thinks the people of the Lost Ten Tribes looked like, he would be sure to give you a description of the typical modern Jew. Such an individual would probably say that the Israelites were short, and of stocky build, with dark or olive-coloured complexions and with very dark (if not black) hair. And he would probably also add that the Israelites must have had prominent noses! This is what a "Semite" is supposed to look like. But is such a conception a true picture of to original pre-captivity Israelite?
Before we begin to accurately form a picture of what the original Israelite looked like, we must thoroughly examine the "Jewish question."
Most who have studied the Jewish question will generally claim that the present-day Jews are the descendants of Israel, and are, therefore, Israelites. But, as A. H. Sayce and R. Peterson warn,
"...we must be careful to define what we mean by the modern Jewish type. The Jewish race is by no means a pure one. It has admitted proselytes from various nations, and at different periods in its career has intermarried with other races. There are the 'black Jews' of Malabar, for example, who are descended from the Dravidian natives of Southern India; there are the 'white Jews' of certain parts of Europe whose type is European rather than Jewish. The Falashas of Abyssinia are Jews by religion rather than in origin, and it is only by the aid of intermarriage that we can explain the CONTRAST in type between the two great divisions of European Jews -- the SEPHARDIM of Spain and Italy and the ASHKENAZIM of Germany, Poland, and Russia" (Race in Ancient Egypt and the Old Testament, p. 95).
Are Dr. Kephart and others right in assuming that the people of the twelve-tribed House of Israel were all like the present-day Ashkenazic Jews, that is "with tawny complexion, of medial height and stocky build, with prominent nose and brachycephalous head...."?
In other words, were the people of the Twelve Tribes of Israel like the present-day Ashkenazim Jews? Or were they not more like the Sephardic, Aryan or Nordic type of Jews? Also recall Dr. Kephart's statement, "The peculiar notion advanced by some writers, chiefly religionists, that those dark-complexioned brachycephalic [broad-headed] Turanian people were the ancestors of the blond mesocephalic Aryan Anglo-Saxons is too absurd physiologically to receive further notice" (Races of Mankind, p. 155).
Ripley and many ethnologists and historians clearly point out that the Sephardic Jews are, in fact, Aryan or European in type!
Dr. Kephart seems to express the general notions of the average man-onthe-street in regard to the assumed appearance of the people of the ancient Kingdom of Israel. It seems that everybody automatically assumes that since many of the Jews today (the Ashkenazim) are in the main a dark-haired, dark-complexioned, broad-headed people; and since the Arabs are also a very dark people everyone automatically assumes that the people of the Lost Ten Tribes of Israel must have a dark-haired, dark-eyed, dark‑complexioned, short type of people.
According to Sayce and Peterson:
"The True Semite, whether we meet with him in the deserts and towns of Arabia, in the bas-reliefs of the Assyrian palaces, or in the streets of some European city, is distinguished by ethnological features still almost as distinctive as the philological features which distinguish the Semitic languages. He belongs to the white race, using the term 'race' in its broadest sense. But the division of the white race of which he is a member has characteristics of its own so marked and distinctive as to constitute a sub-race on its own...The skull...was historically dolichocephalic, and many of today's Ashkenazim Jews are broad-headed, instead of long-headed like traditional Semites [Judahites].
"It is curious, however, that in Central Europe a late nineteenth century examination of the Ashkenazim Jews showed that while about 15 per cent were blonds, brachycephalism occurred almost exclusively among the brunettes. It is difficult to account for this except on the theory of extensive mixture of blood. The fairness is presumed to have come from genes acquired from the surrounding long-headed and fair [Israelite] German population, while the broad-headedness may have been acquired by admixture, North of the Caucasus, by the Jewish migrants with some of the brachycephalic peoples who live around the Caucasus, which could have included the much-discussed KHAZARS" (Race in Ancient Egypt and the Old Testament, pp. 97-98).
(For more information on the Khazar background of the majority of the Ashkenazim Jews, download or send for our articles, The Jews, Khazaria, and the Judahites! and Could the Modern "Jews" Be Israel?).
The Israelites Were Predominantly Nordics
Now let us go to history -- and also to the Scriptures -- to prove what the pre-captivity people of the Twelve Tribes of Israel were really like.
Professor Sayce makes the following significant comment concerning the racial type depicted on the walls of the temple of Amon at Karnak:
"The names of the Jewish towns captured by the Egyptian King Soshenk...recorded on the walls of the temple of Karnak are each surmounted with the head and shoulders of a prisoner. Casts have been made of the heads by Sir Flinders Petrie, and the racial type represented by them turns out to be Amorite and not Jewish" (Sayce, Races of the Old Testament, pp. 115, 116).
The Egyptian king who made these lifelike engravings of "Amorite" prisoners from the land of Israel was Pharaoh Soshenk!
What does Professor Sayce mean when he states that these Palestinian prisoners turned out to be "Amorite" and not Jews after all? By "Amorite" he means they were a blond, Nordic type! He further states that "David...was blond and red-haired" (ibid.)!
"It is plain that the Amorite belonged to the blond race. His blue eyes and light hair prove this incontestably. So also does the colour of his skin, when compared with that of other races depicted by the Egyptian artists. At Medianet Habu, for example, where the skin of the Amorite is pale pink, that of the Lebu or Libyan and the Mashuasn or Masyes is red like that of the Egyptians, though we know that the Libyans belonged to a distinctively fair-complexioned race. In a tomb (No. 34) of the Eighteenth Dynasty, at Thebes, the Amorite chief of Kadesh has a white skin, and light red-brown eyes and hair..." (ibid., pp. 167, 165).
Note carefully Professor Sayce's remarks, as they have a very important bearing upon the conclusions which will be drawn later. We shall see that Sayce and others call the Israelites "Amorites" -- though the people of Israel were not Amorites in the true sense. The original Amorites were descendants of Ham (through his son, Canaan), and were dark-complexioned like all of Ham's descendants (Genesis 10:15-20).
Sayce then goes on to show that at that time a line of blonds extended all the way from the northern coast of Africa east to the corner of the Mediterranean, then north to Coele-Syria, and that this was only broken by the Delta of Egypt, where we know darker people have always lived.
Blond Israelites Called "Amorites"
These statements show clearly that these "Amorites" were a blond race. Now let us go back and analyze the statement made by Professor Sayce in regard to the campaign of Soshenk, the Egyptian Pharaoh. According to Professor Sayce (and many historians give similar accounts), the Pharaoh, in his campaign against Israel, took a number of prisoners. These so-called "Jewish" prisoners turn out to be "Amorite" -- according to Professor Sayce! Also remember that a number of paintings, according to Professor Sayce and other sources, show that the Amorites were definitely a blond race. Their features were more like the northwest Europeans of today.
It should be pointed out, however, that some think the Pharaoh who took these Israelitish prisoners (called "Amorites") was the So mentioned in II Kings 17:4. They believe it was So, Pharaoh of Egypt, who recorded his conquests on the walls of the Temple at Karnak.
Whether these Israelitish prisoners were taken in the time of Rehoboam or at the later date (in the time of Hoshea -- king of ten-tribed Israel), the fact remains that the prisoners were taken from the people of Israel. They were definitely a blond race!
This is just one more proof that the Israelites of the pre-captivity were a blond people!
Speaking of the busts of these "Jewish" prisoners, Professor Sayce says, ''We must conclude, therefore, that even after the Revolt of The Ten Tribes, the bulk of the population in Southern Judah continued to be Amorite [that is, blond and Nordic] in race though not in name" (ibid., p. 116). The "Jewish type" meaning the Ashkenazim, was so scantily represented that the Egyptian artist failed to depict it at all. And remember by this expression "Jewish type," Professor Sayce undoubtedly means the short-statured, dark-skinned, broad-headed, Ashkenazic Jew familiar to most of us today.
Notice Professor Sayce says that these Jewish prisoners were not actually "Jewish" at all, but were Amorites. He says the "Jewish type" was so scantily represented that the Egyptian artist passed it over when depicting the prisoners who had been brought from Judah (ibid., p. 116).
But here is the real truth of the matter. After the ten-tribed northern Kingdom of Israel rejected the rulership of the throne of David, forming a separate kingdom, only the tribes of Judah, Benjamin, and a portion of the Levites were in the southern part of the land of Israel to form the kingdom thereafter known as the Kingdom of Judah.
Shishak's "Amorite" Israelite Prisoners
These representations or figures on the walls of the temple of Karnak, which have been called "Amorite," were primarily from the Northern Kingdom of Israel, as the following source reveals:
"When Solomon began to rule in Palestine, the central government in Egypt was weak. In the Faiyum there was a powerful family descended from Libyan chieftains. A prince of this family, Sheshonk, whom the Bible calls Shishak, became strong enough to be received on equal terms by a reigning pharaoh at Thebes. Soon Shishak claimed the rule of all Egypt....Our chief Egyptian source of information on his Asiatic campaign comes from his building at the temple of Amon in Karnak late in his reign.
"Ca. 920 B.C. or shortly thereafter, in the fifth year of Solomon's successor Rehoboam, Shishak made a gesture to restore some of Egypt's old glory. He led an army of Egyptians, Libyan scouts, and Libyan and Ethiopian mercenaries into Palestine for a wide-sweeping campaign. Among the cities which he captured was Jerusalem, where he looted the temple and the palace of the treasures upon which Solomon has (sic.) laid out such great expenses. Some of Shishak's loot was later dedicated to the god Amon at Thebes.
"Evidence for this Shishak raid into Palestine has been found at Megiddo in the fragment of a triumphal stela which he erected there. On the walls of the temple of Karnak he listed the towns which he 'captured.' The list does not indicate that he went farther N than the foothills of Galilee....The list of conquered towns runs to more than 150. Ca. two dozen identifications can be firmly made, most of them in the N kingdom. The section which apparently deals with localities in Judah is badly broken..." (The Interpreter's Dictionary of the Bible, vol. 4, art. "Shishak").
"In Rehoboam's fifth year Shishak (cf. 2 Chronicles 12:2-4) invaded Judah, and Israel as well. Archaeology shows Shishak is Sheshonk I of Egypt (c. 945-924 B.C.), founder of the Twenty-second Dynasty, whose gold-masked body was discovered at Tanis in 1938-39. His triumphal Karnak (Thebes) inscription lists towns taken in Judah as well as in Israel and Gilead [E. of the Jordan River]. Part of his stele was excavated at Megiddo, showing that he actually took this city, as the Karnak relief shows" (Unger's Bible Handbook, Unger, p. 215).
It should be clear that Shishak's prisoners from the land of Palestine were not just Judahites of the Southern Kingdom of Judah, but were primarily from among the Israelites of the Northern Kingdom. Yet they are called "Amorites" simply because their physical appearance does not conform rigidly to what many believe to be today's "typical Jew."
Men of Judah and Benjamin Were Nordics
These blond, long-headed prisoners taken captive by the Pharaoh of Egypt were undoubtedly typical of many of the Israelites.
It has already been clearly pointed out that many of the present-day Jews nave a tendency towards blondism, and are of the lone-headed type. These dolichocephalic Jews are found primarily among the Sephardic branch of the Jews, even though there are also quite a number of blond, long-headed Jews among the Ashkenazic Jews.
"The non-biblical material has markedly increased our knowledge of the Amorites...Egyptian illustrations of the New Kingdom show the Palestinian Amorites to have been a race much more like the northern Europeans than the Semites: long-headed, with blue eyes, straight nose and thin lips....The Amorites were inhabitants of a territory lying west of Babylonia, and the majority of them belonged (as forerunners of the Aramaeans) to the western Semitic race" (Ency. Brit., 14th ed., Vol. 1, art. "Amorites").
The Encyclopaedia Britannica points out that the Amorites were "long-headed." It also mentions that the Babylonians called the people living to the west of them "Amorites," meaning "Westerners." This term "Amorite" or "Westerner" was used by other peoples including the Egyptian-speaking of the people living in the area of Palestine. The Babylonians called the people living in that area "Amorites" or Westerners to distinguish one people from another. The Egyptians and others undoubtedly did the same thing. Many modern-day scholars do the same thing. However, they fail to differentiate between the true, original Amorites, mentioned in Genesis 10, and the other "Westerners" who lived in Palestine and were also called "Amorite" by the Gentile nations.
[Soshenk]..." (Sayce, The Races of the Old Testament).
"The profiles of the Amorites, as depicted on the monuments of the Nineteenth and Twentieth Dynasties, are practically identical with the figures at Karnak, which surmount the names of the cities captured by Shishak
This shows conclusively that the blond Israelites were called Amorites.
In Genesis chapter ten, verse fifteen, we read that Canaan begat Sidon his firstborn and Heth, and a Jebusite and an Amorite. The true, original Amorites (according to biblical usage) were descendants of Canaan, and were therefore Canaanites. They were descendants of Ham -- and were in no sense of the word "blonds." But, as already mentioned, undoubtedly this name "Amorite" was used by the Babylonians, Egyptians and others to denote generally blond races which were living in the Palestinian area -- races which had supplanted the original Amorites.
Let us notice a few interesting statements concerning the Palestinian Amorites, by E. E. Jessel. We shall presently see that he makes the grave mistake of thinking that the Judahite prisoners were Amorites.
"Sargon I., King of Agede and first king of the Babylonian Empire describes Palestine on one of monuments as a land of the Amorites (Sayce, Patriarchal Palestine), and at a later period we find portraits of Amorite prisoners on the wall sculpture of Egypt. The Egyptians depict them as a fair people, with blond or reddish hair and blue eyes" (The Unknown History of the Jews, p. 107).
Again, note carefully that the Egyptians depict the "Amorites" as "a fair people" having "blond or reddish hair and blue eyes." This shows, as we have seen proven, that the Egyptians and others called the Israelites, "Amorites."
Also remember that the true "Amorites" were Hamitic; and we know of no light-skinned, blond-haired, and blue-eyed descendants of Ham on this earth today, neither did such ever exist! All truly Hamitic peoples have dark skins, though this does not mean that they are all black or even dark brown.
"A study of ethnology leads to the conclusion that these people were the blond or red-haired white race, of the Amurra or Amurru we hear of occasionally in the campaigns in the direction of the Amanus mountains. That the Amorites were Caucasians in appearance and physique leaves no room for doubt, and some of their habits and forms of worship point to their being a Keltic sub-race" (ibid., p. 107).
The Celts are, in fact, part of the Lost Ten Tribes.
Did you notice that Jessel plainly says the Amorites (these "Amorites" being beyond question Israelites) were "Caucasian" in physique and appearance. He says there can be no doubt that these Amorites were "a Keltic sub-race."
Keep this important point in mind, for later on we shall see irrefutable proof showing that there are many connecting links to verify that the Kelts are definitely some of the dispersed peoples of the "Lost Ten Tribes of Israel!"
"In the accompanying illustrations [says Jessel] we reproduce, by permission of Professor W. Flinders Petrie, photographs of casts he has made from sculptures in the Egyptian tombs. These portraits of Amorite [referring to Israelitish captives] prisoners of war belong chiefly to the period of Seti I....The shape of the head and the features generally remind us of the fair type of modern Jew, and have some resemblance to the Scotch, if we imagine a reddish colouring for the hair, and blue eyes....In Scotland, Sweden, Brittany, and Spain superstitions still survive which can be traced to Amorite forms of belief, and even the type of the Amorite can be distinguished in the population. These resemblances in Europe to certain forms of Jewish belief have led to the vague notions about the "Lost Tribes" which we sometimes hear...." (ibid., pp. 107. 108).
Notice that Jessel says customs of the so-called Amorites (which in this case were beyond question Israelites) in Britain and elsewhere, were such as to cause some to think that the Lost Tribes are today found in such countries as Scotland, Sweden and Brittany.
"Here, then, may be the origin of those settlements," Jessel says, "on the shores of even the British Isles which introduced Amorite forms of worship; and we see in the cromlechs of the Druids the very same arrangement of stones which is characteristic of the Amorites of Palestine" (ibid., p. 110).
Judah and Benjamin -- Called "Amorites"'
Note carefully the following statements made by Jessel regarding the Jews and Benjamites:
"We find in the Bible many references to the fighting power of the Benjamin, and we find them also always in alliance with Yahuds [Judahites]. Together these white races held in subjection the coloured people, the natives of Canaan.
"Judah and Benjamin are the Amurra ["Amorites"] and the Kheta of the Egyptian monuments" (ibid., p. 118).
Jessel thinks that the settlements in the British Isles which had built the cromlechs were the same people as the Palestinian Amorites. He plainly says that "Judah and Benjamin are the Amurra whom the Egyptians had depicted. Also, did you notice that Jessel spoke of the "Yahuds" and the "Benjamin" as "these white races"? He also spoke of the native Canaanites as "the coloured people."
Truly, the native Canaanites were dark or colored in comparison with the people of the tribes of Judah (the Yahuds) and the Benjamin (Benjamites).
Furthermore, we have noticed that the Sephardic Jews are more "European" or "Nordic" than they are "Jewish"; and we have observed that there is a considerable degree of blondism among this branch of Jews. Many redheads are found among them. (For further verification of this, see the Jewish Encyclopedia, volume XII, art. "Types, Anthropological," pp. 291-95).We have seen that a number of casts were made of the busts of Israelitish prisoners and we noted that these prisoners from the land of Israel turned out to be "Nordic" in type. They are called "Amorites" by Sayce and others. They just can't believe that these blond and Nordic Israelitish prisoners (mistakenly called Amorites), captured by Pharaoh could be Israelites. They, like most, assume all Israelites would have to he a short, dark-skinned, broad-headed people like most of the Ashkenazic Jews.
How Many Jewish "Races"?
A full discussion of various Jewish types is beyond the scope of this article. However, a few quotes from The Myth of the Jewish Race, by Raphael & Jennifer Patai Wing, will be both interesting and thought-provoking.
According to this book, there are those who believe that "The Jews constitute one single race," "two distinct races or racial types," "three races or racial types," and some hold the view that the "Jews are not a separate racial group at all" (chap. 1, p. 21).
"In 1867 the Austrian physician Augustin Weisbach began anchronometric measurements, but it was not until 1878 that he published his results....[After taking a number of measurements], he concluded that 'the (European) Jews have a small stature, have mostly straight, but often also curly, hair, of predominantly dark, not rarely also red, color, usually grey and light brown eyes, and a lively pulse. They have a large, mesocephalic (more often dolicho- than brachycephalic) head, which is narrow at its base; a long face which is moderately wide between the cheeks, very narrow at the top, and narrow between the corners of the lower jaw, with a moderately high forehead...The nose starts out very narrow at its root, is in general very big and of considerable length and height, but at the same time very narrow. The mouth and ears are of medium size!
"While these generalizations were made by Weisbach on the basis of his own measurements" says Wing, "he also remarks that, in general, 'there are doubtless two cephalic types among the European Jews, one dolichocephalic, with a narrow, long face, a similar, on the whole big, nose, and thin lips; and a brachycephalic, with a broad face, low, broad, small nose and thick lips'" (The Myth of the Jewish Race, Wing, p. 26).
And the French psychologist Maurice Muret published his book, L'Esprit Juif, in 1901. Chapter two of this work is devoted to "The Israelite Race". States Muret:
short beard, broad nose, grey, small, shrewd eyes, and stocky body. These are the Ashkenazim or Polish Jews or German Jews, or Tedeschi, thus named in contrast to the Spagnuoli or Sephardim, or Jews of Portugal and Spain. The latter are encountered in the Orient and in the Mediterranean Basin, principally in the Iberian Peninsula, from where they spread into The Netherlands.
"Today the Israelite race presents us with two very different aspects, the Ashkenazim and the Sephardim. These are, in effect, two very distinct types (of Jews). In the north of Russia and in Poland, in Germany, in Bohemia, one encounters a Jewish tribe with generally red hair,
"The Sephardim are thought to have conserved the ancient Jewish type much more purely than their brothers dispersed among the Central and Eastern Europeans. They are generally of a tall stature, occasionally beautiful. Their shoulders are narrow, the head well set, the face slightly prognathous. The nose is strong but narrow, often curved. The mouth is big, the hair abundant, and most frequently dark brown, occasionally red, very rarely blond. The eyes are brown, more rarely grey, very rarely blue..." (L'Esprit Juif, chap. 2, art. "The Israelite Race").
Wing concurs by saying --
"In the early 1940s, Carleton S. Coon likewise maintained that the Sephardim form one race and the Ashkenazim another. As to the former, 'there can be no reasonable doubt that the Sephardim form a single population in the racial sense, despite their geographicaldiscontinuity,' and that they 'preserve with reasonable fidelity the racial character of their Palestinian ancestors. They, are Mediterraneans, metrically of a central or generalized Mediterranean position, except that they have unusually narrow lateral dimensions of the face, including the distance between the eyes'" (The Myth of the Jewish Race, p. 29).
A Vulnerable Jewish Minority
Throughout the period in question, the Jews in Europe generally constituted about 1 per cent of the total population. Since, in modern times, European (Ashkenazi) Jews have accounted for some four-fifths of the world Jewish population, their racial antecedents are more significant for the problem of the Jewish 'race' at present than those of the Sephardi and Oriental (Middle Eastern) divisions of Jewery. If, then, we consider only the Ashkenazi Jews, we find that in 1300 they numbered about 260,000 in the midst of 37.9 million Gentiles, or about 0.7 per cent of the total population; while in 1490 they numbered 270,000 among 50 million Gentiles, or 0.54 per cent of the total. The vulnerability of such a small minority to the genetic influence of a 150 to 190 times larger majority requires no elaboration" (ibid., p. 49).
It is a fact, however, that during the Middle Ages, the Renaissance, Protestant Reformation and the (Catholic) Counter Reformation, many Jews did give up their Jewish religion and ethnic connections in order to avoid persecution, expulsion or even death. The offspring of most of those who did so eventually lost the knowledge of their ancient race and traditions. And there has always been a certain amount of voluntary interbreeding.
"In the fervently religious atmosphere of the Jewish communities of medieval Europe outside the Mediterranean area, voluntary interbreeding with Gentiles was rarely initiated by Jews. However forcible violations of Jewish women by Gentiles were more frequent, especially in localities where the few Jews could offer no resistance to even a small group of Gentile hooligans, and where there was no Jewish ghetto with walls and gates to protect them. The frequent recurrence of such incidents was the reason for rabbinical injunctions against settling in localities where no other Jews lived. The very presence of small and scattered splinter groups of outlandish Jews, differing in religion mores, language and mannerisms, appearance, customs, and occupations, disliked at best and hated at worst, brought about the sexual violation of Jewish women among several other types of abuses.
"Whether violations and impregnations of Jewish women in a given locality actually occurred once in 5 or 10 years on the average we have, of course, no way of knowing. But there can be no doubt that the situation, the circumstances, the folk mores being what they were in the Middle Ages all over Europe, forcible interbreeding between Gentile males and Jewish females did occur quite frequently. It is here that we must seek a primary explanation for the often striking genetic and phenotypic similarity between Ashkenazi Jews and the Gentiles of the countries in which they have lived during and since the Middle Ages" (The Myth of the Jewish Race, pp. 49, 50).
Certainly, the unfortunate facts of such forced violations would have contributed somewhat to the non-Jewish admixture of genes which is patently the case in Europe and in other parts of the world where Jews have resided.
How valuable are Cephalic Index (C.I.) measurements in helping to determine racial connections?
has remained unchanged for four to five thousand years" (ibid., p. 184)
"On the basis of the measurements of more than 5,000 individuals in the Middle East, Ariens Kappers concluded that the cephalic index has hereditary value. He also demonstrated that the cephalic index of the Egyptians
Do the Jews constitute one single race, two races, three or more races -- or, do they constitute no race at all?
groups; and, on the other hand, evidence for a common Mediterranean ancestry for these diverse Jewish groups" (The Myth of the Jewish Races, p. 226).
"Thus all the traits examined so far -- morphological traits, blood group genes, and red blood cell and serum proteins -- show, on the one hand, an extensive admixture of different non-Jewish populations with the Jews, resulting in great heterogeneity (not, homogeneity!) among different Jewish
What does all of this prove? Simply this. According to the portrait testimony recorded on the walls of the temple of Amon at Karnak, Egypt, the so-called blond or white peoples were called "Amorites" but were (according to the Bible) in fact taken as prisoners from the tribes of Israelites.
Those who argue that modern-day descendants of the Lost Ten Tribes would have to look like the "typical Jew" of today (short, olive complexioned, with a "Jewish nose") simply don't know what they are talking about!
The Jews, both in Bible times, and in more recent recorded history, have always mixed rather freely with other peoples. (See Genesis 38:1-30; 1 Kings 11:1-9; Nehemiah 13:23-28; Ezra 9:12, 10:10-44) And though they have retained their essential "Jewishness," they have nonetheless absorbed many genes from other races. Also, bear in mind that the Sephardic Jews (who are less mixed than the Ashkenazic Jews) have a great deal of blondism, blue eyes, and other features which are very similar to the Anglo-Saxon-Celtic races of Northwest Europe. The Sephardic Jews are, in fact, closely related to these peoples of Northwest Europe.
All of these points lead us unerringly to the inescapable conclusion that the original Israelites were more "Nordic" in type than "Jewish."The bulk of them resembled their present-day "Nordic" descendants who inhabit northwest Europe!
We have seen abundant historical evidence proving that the original-type Israelites were not all short, olive-skinned, dark-haired, broad-headed people with prominent noses! Now let us see what racial type the Israelites were according to the Bible!
Laban -- The Blond Syrian
Just before Abraham died he told his trusted servant to go to the city of Nahor to get a wife for his son, Isaac (Genesis 24:1-10). "And he arose, and went to Mesopotamia, unto the city of Nahor" (ibid., v. 10). "Mesopotamia" means "between the rivers" -- Tigris and Euphrates.
Isaac did the same -- before he died!
"And Isaac called Jacob. and blessed him, and charged him, and said unto him, Thou shalt not take a wife of the daughters of Canaan. Arise, go to Padan-aram, [the plain of Syria] to the house of Bethuel thy mother's father; and take thee a wife from thence of the daughters of Laban thy mother's brother'" (Genesis 28:1, 2).
If one will read the rest of the 28th chapter of Genesis -- and also the 29th and 30th chapters -- he will see that Jacob obeyed his father, Isaac, and went to Padan-aram, "the plain of Syria," to the home of his uncle, Laban. Here he met and married Leah and Rachel, two of Laban's daughters.
But what does the name "Laban" signify? In the Hebrew language in which the Old Testament was written,"Laban" means "white" (Strong, The Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, under "Laban").
Any good Bible dictionary will show that the word "Laban" means "white" and comes from the same Hebrew stem as does the word "Lebanon" -- meaning "white." Strong's Exhaustive Concordance defines the word "Lebanon" in the Hebrew as "(the) white mountain (from its snow)." So we see that the Lebanon Mountain was named Lebanon because it was a white mountain.
Why, then, would Laban have been called "white" unless he was a fair, light-skinned or"white" person? He must have been a very fair person in order to have been called by this name, Laban. Judging from his modern descendants, one would conclude the same thing. See Genesis 49:12, "teeth 'white' with milk," and Numbers 12:10, where we read that Miriam became "white as snow." The word "white" in both of the references just cited is the same word in the Hebrew as the name translated "Laban!"
NamesAlways Had a Meaning
Also remember that in the time of the Hebrew Patriarchs, it was customary to always name a person with a significant name. There Is hardly any example in the HebrewScriptures of the name of any individual being without some significance. Thus the name "Abraham" means of a "father of a multitude" (Genesis 12:1-5), "Isaac" means "laughter" (Genesis 21:1-6), "Jacob" means "heel catcher," i.e., "supplanter, or "deceiver" (Genesis 27:36), "Israel" means "overcomer with God" or "prevailer with God" (Genesis 32:28), and "Satan" means "adversary." These are just a few of many thousands of Hebrew words -- all of which had a definite meaning. Laban, then, was named "Laban" or "white" because he was a white, fairskinned person.
Jacob, also called Israel, went to the plain of Syria (Padan-aram) and married into his own family. He married two of his own cousins, Leah and Rachel. It was quite customary in Patriarchal times to marry a close relative. Even Abraham married his half-sister (Genesis 20:12); and Adam's children all had to marry their own brothers or sisters, since at that early stage in the development of "homosapiens" there was no one else to marry.
Since Laban was a fair or "white" person, his two daughters, Leah and Rachel, whom Jacob married, must have also been very fair; and since Jacob was their cousin, he must have had some of the blond, "Syrian" features of his uncle, Laban. This is also borne out by the modern-day descendants of Jacob, who have many blonds among them. Remember, we have seen that the Sephardic Jews have a great deal of blondism among them. Here is a list of Jacob's sons:
The sons of Leah; Reuben, Jacob's firstborn, and Simeon, and Levi, and Judah, and Issachar, and Zebulun: the sons of Rachel; Joseph, and Benjamin: and the sons of Bilhah, Rachel's handmaid; Dan, and Naphtli: and the sons of Zilpah, Leah's handmaid: Gad and Asher: these are the sons of Jacob which were born to him in Padan-aram" (Genesis 35:23-26).
Notice that these children were all born to Jacob while he was yet in Padan-aram, or the plain of Syria. Undoubtedly Leah and Rachel were quite fair-complexioned like their father, Laban.
Thus we see that the family of Abraham must have contained a considerable amount of blondism in their genes. This does not mean that there were no brunets in the people of Israel. Remember, the word "blond" is used today to denote various shades of brown hair as well as to refer to "pure blonds" and redheads. A "brunet" is one who has very dark brown or black hair.
Sarah Was "Very Fair"
Abraham says of his wife, Sarah, "Behold now, I know that thou art a fair woman to look upon" (Genesis 12:11). And in verse 14 we read, "And it came to pass, that, when [Abraham] came into Egypt the Egyptians beheld the woman that she was very fair." Sarah was Abraham's half-sister (Genesis 20:12). The Hebrew word here translated as "fair" is "yawfeh." It is from a Hebrew root meaning "to be bright." The context shows that this word refers to the physical appearance, and is not here associated with mental aptitudes. There is every reason to believe that this word is to be understood, according to its literal sense, in regard to Sarah. She was not a dark-skinned person, but was a bright- or light-skinned person. Since Abraham was half-brother to Sarah (Genesis 20:12), he must also have been a fair-skinned person.
Furthermore, there is historical and archaeological confirmation of the fact that Sarah -- the mother of the peoples of Israel -- was a "white" or "Caucasoid" type person:
"Archaeology sheds interesting light on Sarah's beauty. She was 'a fair woman to look upon' (Gen. 12:11, 14), and a scroll found in a cave near the Dead Sea in 1947 gives us this description of Sarah: 'How fine is the hair of her head, how fair indeed, and her eyes, and how pleasing her nose and all the radiance of her face, how lovely all her whiteness....'" (Tells, Tombs and Treasure, Robert T. Boyd, chap. 4, p. 81).
Rebekah was also "very fair" to look upon (Genesis 24:16; 26:7). The word used in this instance, however, is a different word and may not of itself prove that Rebekah was a light-skinned person. However, there is every reason to believe it is to be taken in this sense. The other many texts which we have cited show that Rebekah was from a family of fair-skinned people.
David Was Ruddy and Fair
We all know that David was a descendant of Judah and was, therefore, a Judahite. What did he look like? "For he [David] was but a youth, and ruddy, and of a fair countenance" (I Samuel 17:42). The word translated "fair" in this verse is the same word as was used in regard to Sarah. We have already noticed that this word in the Hebrew means "to be bright." It undoubtedly refers to the complexion of the individual.
Not only was David a fair person, but the Scripture shows that he was "ruddy." What is the meaning of the Hebrew word from which the English word "ruddy" was translated? The Hebrew word is "admoniy" and it means "reddish." It is the same word as is used in Genesis 25:25. "And the first [Esau] came out red, all over like an hairy garment; and they called his name Esau." The word here translated as "red" is the same as is found in I Samuel 16:12, which is translated as "ruddy." "Now he [David] was ruddy, and withal of a beautiful countenance, and goodly to look to."
So there can be absolutely no doubt about it -- David was not the dark-skinned Ashkenazic type of Jew. He was a fair-skinned, ruddy complexioned Jew -- just as most blonds in northwestern Europe have both light skins and ruddy complexions; and just as many Sephardic Jews are, red-haired. They are, in fact, tribal relatives of King David, who was also "fair." This is the same word (yawfeh) as was used when describing Sarah; and means, in the Hebrew language, "to be bright," and has to refer to a light or fair skin in David's case, for a "ruddy" complexioned individual is always a fair person.
Some Jews Are Ruddy, With Black Hair
In The Song of Solomon, chapter 5:10, 11, we read, "My beloved is white and ruddy, the chiefest amongst ten thousand. His head is as the most fine gold, his locks are bushy, and black as a raven."
To whom does this refer? Does it refer to King Solomon? Or does it refer to the Messiah as some believe? This person was "white" and "ruddy," but his hair was "as black as a raven." Modern Jews have both red and black hair. The word translated as "ruddy" in this verse is from the Hebrew word "awdome" meaning "rosy." It is the same word as is used in Isaiah 1:1, where it speaks of one's sins being "red like crimson." Also this is the same word used in a number of Scriptures when referring to "red wine."
Anyone who is "white and ruddy" is always a fair-skinned person.
There can be no question that this "Jewish type" referred to in the fifth chapter of The Song of Solomon was not an olive-skinned type of Ashkenazic Jew, but he must have been the Sephardic type of Jew, having light skin with a pinkish or reddish cast to it.
The Jewess mentioned throughout this Song of Solomon is repeatedly called "fair" (Heb. "yawfeh") and indicates that the person alluded to here was a fair-skinned person.
Esther -- a Fair Person
Now let us notice that Esther, who became Queen of the Persian Empire, was a light- or fair-skinned person. She was of the tribe of Benjamin (Esther 2:5):
"He [Mordecai] brought up...Esther...and the maid was fair and beautiful" (Esther 2:7). This word "fair'' is the same word that was used when speaking of Sarah. It means "to be bright" and is the only place in all of the book of Esther where this word is used. We read that Vashti, the former haughty queen, was "fair" (ibid.,1:11). But the Hebrew word used here is a different word, and does not mean "to be bright," but it means to be beautiful. We read also of "fair young virgins," (ibid., 2:2, 3).
But the Hebrew word "yawfeh" is not used in regard to any of these women, but is used only in chapter 2, verse 7 in connection with Queen Esther. She had a "bright" or light skin. Esther was not only "fair," but she was also "beautiful." The Hebrew word translated as beautiful in verse 7 is "toar" and means "to delineate, outline, i.e., figure or appearance" (Strong, The Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible). Not only was Esther a fair- or light skinned person, but she was also a person with a very beautiful figure.
The following facts should be borne in mind: Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and their children were all descendants of Shem through his son, Arphaxad (Genesis 10:21-24). The people of Israel were, therefore, descendants of Arphaxad. All of Shem's descendants were fair-skinned. There is not one scintilla of historical (biblical or secular) evidence to prove that any of the Semitic people were dark-skinned except by intermarriage.
People of Israel Were White and Ruddy
Here is another interesting quote showing what the people of Israel were like. Speaking of Israelitish Nazarites, we read, "Her Nazarites were purer than snow, they were whiter than milk, they were more ruddy in body than rubies, their polishing was of sapphire" (Lamentations 4:7).
To whom does this refer? Verse six speaks of "the daughter of my people" and verse twenty-two says, "The punishment of thine iniquity is accomplished, O daughter of Zion." So the expression "her Nazarites" must refer to the Nazarites of the people of Zion -- Israel. Whether this refers to the ten-tribed House of Israel or only to the Judahites, or whether it is past, present, or a future prophecy is immaterial.
Notice, not only does it speak of her Nazarites being "purer than snow," and "whiter than milk," but it also says that "they were more ruddy in body than rubies."
This word "ruddy" is from the Hebrew word "awdome" and means "rosy." It is the same word used in The Song of Solomon 5:10 and Isaiah 1:18 ("red like crimson"). There can be no doubt that this word means ruddy, reddish, or rosy. This is another definite statement from YEHOVAH God's inspired Word proving that the Israelites were a fair-skinned, ruddy-complexioned type of people.
Some think that this refers to the Church. YEHOVAH's true Church is made up of people from physical Israel ONLY -- those predominantly of "fair skin" and "Caucasian in physique and appearance." (For more information download or send for our articles, Spiritual Israel Comes From Physical Israel and The "CHURCH" -- Called Out of What?). This verse shows that Israel's Nazarites had fair skins with a ruddy tint to them. These Israelitish Nazarites were white and ruddy. In fact, most fair- or white-skinned people, when in health, have ruddy skins; but when they are sick their skin becomes very white or pale as a result of a lack of red corpuscles.
These references should suffice to show any who are open-minded that the people of the ancient Twelve Tribes of Israel were not a dark- or olive‑skinned people; but were primarily a light-skinned race, having a great element of blondism in their genes. This does not mean to imply that there were not some brown-, or even black-headed people among them. But judging by some of the modern blond Sephardic Jews, and also from the Scriptures (both of which indicate that the Israelites were fair) we conclude that they were not primarily a short, dark and broad-headed people with prominent noses. But they were "Nordic" (northwest European) in type.
There is, however, a biblical principle which should now be pointed out. The Bible does not say, in most instances, of what race of people the various wives of the twelve sons of Jacob were. We know that one of the three surviving sons of Judah (Shelah) was half-Canaanite since his mother was a Canaanite. We also know that of Simeon's six children one of them was by a Canaanitish woman, and was therefore half-Canaanitish (Genesis 46:10).
It would appear that in every instance in the beginnings of the nation of Israel, when an Israelite married outside of the general family-stock of Israel, YEHOVAH God always had it recorded in the Scripture for our benefit.
Here are the various instances of the Hebrew Patriarchs marrying outside of the family of Shem:
Abraham had a son by an Egyptian bond-woman named Hagar. This son, Ishmael, was half-Egyptian. Ishmael married an Egyptian wife (Genesis 21:21) which would mean that his descendants consequently would be three-fourths Egyptian. The Egyptians were relatively dark-skinned. Most of the present-day Arabs are the descendants of Abraham through Ishmael. They are about three-fourths Egyptian.
Later, Abraham's grandson, Esau, failed to marry into his own family and among his own people, but took a Canaanitish woman to be his wife. This proved to be a very great source of grief to his parents (Genesis 36:34-35). When Esau saw that his father, Isaac, was displeased because he had taken a Canaanitish wife, he then went to Ishmael, his uncle, and married one of that family. Remember, the people of Ishmael were now three-fourths Egyptian (Genesis 28:6-9; 27:46).
This shows that the descendants of Esau had mixed at an early period with the Canaanites and also with their Ishmaelitish kinsmen who were three-fourths Egyptian.
It would appear that the Bible always mentions it when the founding-fathers of the nation of Israel married foreign or Canaanitish daughters.
Remember, Canaan was under a great curse: "Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren" (Genesis 9:25).
YEHOVAH God did not wish His "Chosen People" to mix with the Canaanites (or any other non-Israelite race, for that matter), thereby coming under a curse. When we come to the twelve sons of Israel who founded the Twelve Tribes of Israel, the Bible only mentions that Judah and Simeon married Canaanitish daughters. Genesis 46:10, already mentioned, shows that one of Simeon's six children was by a Canaanitish woman -- the inference, being that the other five were not Canaanitish. The other five children must have been of the same race or people as the family of Abraham. Isaac, Jacob. Laban and the others.
They were from Padan-aram ("the plain of Syria") in Mesopotamia ("between the rivers" ) i.e., the Tigris and Euphrates rivers.
We have now seen clearly demonstrated from secular and sacred history that the original Israelites of old were not primarily a short, dark, broad-headed and prominent-nosed race! Write A. H. Sayce and R. Peterson:
"As to the fate of the talented Israelites, who first conquered and then lost the 'Holy Land,' it is generally accepted that the skulls of ancient Semites [Israelites] were...dolichocephalic, but that the skulls of a majority of present-day Jews are more commonly mesocephalic or even brachycephalic. Putting aside the exaggerated brachycephalism found among some East European Jews, due, doubtless to INTERMIXTURE WITH KHAZARS or other brachycephalic indigenees of the Caucasus and adjacent lands, statistics have shown that in Central Europe an overwhelming proportion of Central and East European Jews at the turn of the century had broad, round heads.
"Dolichocephalism was mainly found AMONG SEPHARDIC JEWS and those of the Jews of central Europe who were blond -- who formed only 15 per cent of the whole Jewish community...If, therefore, dolichocephalism was the rule among the primitive Jews, as Semites, it would seem that the Semitic component of present-day East European Jews has significantly declined" (Race in Ancient Egypt and the Old Testament, p. 143).
The Scriptures speak of the historic Israelites as a "very fair" people with "ruddy" complexions! Secular history also reveals the same thing. The Israelites of Old Testament pre-captivity times were called "Amorites" by the Gentile nations -- and the Palestinian "Amorites" were definitely a blond, "Nordic" type of people. The northwest European "Nordics" are descendants of these Palestinian "Amorites!" They are, in fact, the children of the dispersed ten-tribed Israel!
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