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father of



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Eldest son of both   and   names her son   because "God has seen ( ) my affliction."   finds some mandrakes which he brings to his mother. His aunt   wants them and she trades   her conjugal rights for the plant ( ). After 's  death,   sleeps with The   (appearing in :)  argues that   did not actually have relations with his step-mother, but rather took his father's bed from 's  tent and removed it to his mother 's  tent ( ). During the fateful episode of the sale of   is the one who attempts to save his little brother.   comes to check on his brothers who are tending sheep away from home. The group sees   from a distance and plots to kill him but   intercedes and convinces the others to throw him into a pit instead, planning to rescue the lad later to restore him to his father. In 's  absence the brothers (led by ) sell   to some passing and when   returns to retrieve   he is distraught to find him gone ( ). During the crisis of the famine, 's  position as leader of the family is further weakened.   is reluctant to send   to Egypt, a move which would satisfy the request of the ruler the brothers encountered on their first visit to secure food.   tries to convince   to send   with them and tells his father that should he return without   may kill 's  two sons.   completely ignores this odd statement ( ). The tribes of   and   as well as half of   request land on the eastern side of the Jordan river rather than on the western side. They feel that the eastern side can better support their abundant cattle.   grants their wish on condition that they participate in the battles on the western side of the river too ( ).   reminds the tribe of their obligation in chapter 1 of   and in chapter 22 acknowledges that they have fulfilled their duty. After the tribes return to their land on the eastern side of the Jordan River, they construct an altar which is interpreted by the western Israelites as a break with the nation and a forbidden act. A delegation confronts the eastern community and threatens them with war if they do not remove the altar. The tribes answer that the altar they have built is not for sacrifices, but is a monument to their association with the rest of Israel ( ).   and   are notable personalities from .



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Concubine of 's  brother.



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Descendants of this   return to   with   following the edict of .



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A descendant of .



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A grandson of .



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Sixth-born son of .



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One of five kings of   killed in Israel's war against that nation ( ).



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Wife of   is the daughter of   and the grand-daughter of 's  brother   is therefore 's  great-niece as well as his daughter-in-law, making her 's  first-cousin once removed. (She is also second-cousins with her sons   and See the entry on   for a detailed explanation of these relationships.) After   dies,   sends his servant to   on a mission to find a wife for Standing at a well, the servant decides to look for a woman who is kind enough to draw water for him and his camels. When   appears and does just that, the servant is sure that God has arranged for him to find this woman for The servant presents himself to 's  father   and brother   who agree to send   back to 's  household.   first meets her husband as he walks in a field in the She covers her face with a veil as the servant relates the entire episode to   loves his wife who brings him comfort following the death of his mother ( ). After twenty years of marriage   finally conceives and has a difficult pregnancy. She receives a communication from God telling her that she is bearing twins, each of whom will found a nation, with the descendants of the older serving those of the younger. 's  two sons,   and   are of different temperaments;   favours   whereas   prefers When her husband declares his intention to bless   before he dies,   convinces   to impersonate   and thus get the blessing for himself. realizing that his brother has stolen his blessing, vows to kill and   resolves to send   to her brother   in order to save his life. As well,   tells   that she does not want her younger son to marry a   woman. The mother instructs her son to seek one of his uncle 's  daughters in marriage ( ). Although 's  death is not reported in the her burial in   is attested to by   ( : ).



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A representative of   king of   has marched on conquering cities as he goes and occupying the city of   south of   is sent (along with two other generals and an army) to confront king of When he gets to   delivers a speech on behalf of his employer in which he tells 's  advisers that it is hopeless to rely on Egypt or indeed God for assistance.   delivers quite a discouraging speech in Hebrew in an attempt to convince the listening Jerusalemites to surrender. According to the Gemara   is an Israelite apostate ( .)



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A descendant of .



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  and   are two men who approach the prophet   (they seem to have been sent by somebody) with the following question: since the Temple is being rebuilt, what is to become of the fast days that have commemorated the destruction of the first   answers that fast days are only meaningful if people use the opportunity to return to God. In any event, he replies, the fast days will indeed become times of celebration.



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Fifth son of   and older brother of .



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A descendant of .



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Widow of daughter-in-law of   and wife of   is born into the nation of   but marries an immigrant from   and his brother   both die and the brothers' mother   decides to return to her homeland.   tries to persuade her daughters-in-law,   and   ( 's  widow) to remain in   instead of accompanying her back to Both women are initially reluctant to accede to this request, but   eventually remains in while   continues on the voyage to 's  country. In the following declaration   pledges to stay with   through thick and thin:

: ' :

And Ruth replied, 'Do not urge me to leave you, to turn back, or to not follow you. For wherever you go, I will go; wherever you lodge, I will lodge; your people will be my people, and your God my God. Where you die, I will die, and there will I be buried. Thus and more will the Lord do to me if anything but death parts me from you' (1:16-17).

  and   return to   and   goes out to the fields to collect barley in accordance with the law allowing the poor to keep whatever the harvesters drop ( : ). The field she happens to visit belongs to who turns out to be a distant relative of   arrives at his field and asks his workers who the new woman is. When he discovers she is who has shown such kindness to his relative he insists on giving her food as if she were one of his workers, and providing her with extra barley to take home.   is delighted to hear that   has promised to take special care of and   spends the rest of the harvest season collecting in 's  field (chapter 2).   sends   to 's  threshing floor one night to encourage him to fulfill his responsibility as a relative, and marry her.   goes stealthily down to the threshing floor and waits until   has eaten and gone to sleep. She then uncovers his feet and waits for him to notice her.   awakes with a start, and after determining who exactly the woman is lying at his feet, promises that he will indeed marry her. First, however, he must speak with a man who is a closer relative to   (and hence to ) than he is, for he has a stronger claim to   (chapter 3).   publicly charges the nearer relative, called the redeemer, with fulfilling his duty in marrying   and buying 's  land, but the man is not interested.   and   marry and have a son, The text concludes by listing the lineage from 's  ancestor   to the couple's great-grandson Israel's second king (chapter 4).   is read on the holiday of




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An adversary of   from .



father of



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A prostitute or innkeeper in   who shelters and assists the two spies sent by   prior to the nation's conquest of   hides the two men from soldiers of   who are searching for them. In return for this deed,   requests and receives assurances that she and her family will be spared when Israel attacks. According to the   later converts and marries   ( :).



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A   from the   family (and 's  grandson) after whom a division of   is named.   also serves as a treasurer for the sanctuary.



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Successor to third king in the line of When   takes charge of the nation his subjects plead with him to ease the burdens of taxation and forced labour imposed by   consults with his senior ministers who advise him to agree to the request. But   foolishly follows the advice of his junior advisers who tell him to increase the burden on the people. The nation rebels and   finds himself with a diminished kingdom of   and   prepares to fight a war against   but the prophet   tells him to stand down - the split is the will of God.   accepts this divine decree. Nevertheless,   and   (who takes over the rest of the nation) battle continually throughout their reigns. Once king,   engages in idolatry and has eighteen wives and sixty concubines.   king of Egypt attacks the stealing golden shields that   had fashioned. 's  son   succeeds him after 17 years of rule.



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A   during the time of   is a signatory to a pledge - an affirmed by the leaders of the community. Those who sign the declaration promise to observe the commandments of the Torah, to refrain from intermarrying, to avoid commerce on Shabbat, and to make regular donations to the Temple.



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A Jew returning with   to   following the edict of This might be the same   who is a signatory to a pledge - an affirmed by the leaders of the community in the time of   ( : ). Those who sign the declaration promise to observe the commandments of the Torah, to refrain from intermarrying, to avoid commerce on Shabbat, and to make regular donations to the Temple.



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A Persian politician stationed in the city of Local non-Jewish residents in Israel appeal to the Jews to allow them to participate in the reconstruction of the Jewish state but are rebuffed. They therefore persuade   to send a letter to his king   in Persia, arguing that the Jews' project must be stopped, for its completion will lead to a Jewish rebellion. The king is convinced and the building is halted temporarily.



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This   is credited with participating in the construction of the walls of   in the time of .



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Wife of mother of   and and daughter of Escaping from   arrives in   seeking his uncle He meets   at the well and falls in love with her.   agrees to let   marry   on condition that   first work seven years tending 's  sheep. After seven years   is eager to marry   but on the wedding night   sends 's  sister   in her place and   is deceived. Enraged and heartbroken,   commits to another seven years of work so that he can marry   too. Like her mother-in-law,   is barren and after her sister   gives   four sons,   complains to   about her situation.   reacts angrily, saying that he cannot play God. Eventually,   does have a son whom she names When   escapes from 's  house   steals her father's idols and then lies to keep them from him ( ).   has a second son whom she names -   (renamed   by ) and it is during labour with this child that she dies.   buries his beloved wife on the road to   ( ). When   and   marry ( ), the townsfolk of   bless   by saying that God should make her like   and   who built up the house of Israel.   is believed to be the matriarch who is most distressed over Israel's exile, based on the phrase from :   weeps for her children.



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A descendant of .



father of



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A grandson of great-grandson of .



father of



father of


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