Hebrew: זרח .
|Also Known As:||"Zarah", "Zerah", "זרח"|
|Birthplace:||Hebron, Canaan, Palestine|
|Death:||Died in Rameses, Goshen, Egypt|
Son of Judah . and Tamar .
|Managed by:||Private User|
About Zerah .
At time of the birth of Pharez and his twin brother Zerah, Zerah stuck his hand out. The midwife put a scarlet thread around his wrist to be able to tell firstborn; he withdrew his hand & Pharez was born first.
Genesis 38 The story of Zara's conception takes the entire thirty eighth chapter of Genesis. His mother Tamar was the wife of Judah's oldest son Er. He died without giving her any children. Judah required his next oldest son [Onan] would keep Er's line alive by her. Onan, however, spilled his semen on the ground, he did this repeatedly to prevent her from conceiving. As a result of this sin in God's eyes, God kill him, just as he killed his older brother Er. As the custom of the time required, Judah promised that his son Shelah, when he was old enough, would do the family duty by her. But when Shelah was old enough Judah balked. By this time Judah was widowed. So Tamar, with cunning, sat at the gate of a city where Judah traveled, playing the role of a temple prostitute. Having compromised Judah in this fashion, she tricked him into leaving his signet as a pledge for her fee. So, when she conceived she was called out as an immoral woman to be stoned. She showed Judah's signet ring and revealed that the man to whom this ring belongs is the father. Tamar had fooled Judah by remaining veiled in the transaction. Judah seeing the justice in the outcome acknowledged that he was that man, he could not deny it, and he declared that she was more righteous than he. So she bore twin sons by Judah. In delivery, Zara pushed his hand out of the womb first. The midwife tied a red string on it to keep track of the first borne. However His brother Perez broke through ahead of Zara, and was born first. Perez became a direct ancestor in the genealogy of Christ [Matthew 1:3] as followed through the line of Joseph. Zara became the father of Darda [ Dara 1 Chr. 2:6] for which the Dardanians were named. Darda is said to have founded Dardania on Mount Ida [modern Turkey] north of the Isle of Lesbos and south east of Dardanelles. Greek mythology attributes the siring of Dardan to Zeus. The similarity of the names Zara and Zeus is note worthy in that context. Interestingly, the rather human like moral fallibility of the Greek pantheon of gods seem a rather natural fit with the ignominious account of Zara's conception as recorded in Genesis. By contrast Christ [in his impeccability] a descendent of his brother Perez [at least nominally by Joseph] seems to be the very antithesis of this humble story. Zara did migrate to Egypt with the rest of the descendents of Jacob. We the descendent mentioned negatively in Jos 7:1. Notably only three generations are mentioned over 400 years so I believe it is safe to assume there was some liberal generation skipping for brevity in the lineal reference. It is possible that Darda did not migrate to Egypt with Jacob. In 1 Kings Dara is mentioned with his brothers Herman and Calcol in a comparative discussion of Solomon's wisdom in which his father is said to be Mahol. "Mahol" as is pointed out by J. F. HEWITT [The Westminster review, Volume 147, page 613] literally means supreme god, which adds great credence to the notion that in some way Zara became a pattern for Zeus. The cause of vindicating Dara as Dardanus has also been taken up by some advocates of British Israelism, including followers of Herbert W. Armstrong. In spite of these dubious advocates, as cited above, there does appear to be a discernable independent body of consensus that Dara of the bible is Dardanus, progenitor of the Trojan people as recounted by Homer in the Iliad.
Another line of argument comes from the advocates of the, justifiably maligned, British Israel crowd, Armstrongest and the like that I’ve mentioned above. In this line Judah is identified as the model of Zeus. I have not had time to check their references, so on the theory that even a stopped clock is right twice a day; I have included it below with the caution that it may be completely fraudulent. Such as it is the text follows:
Discovered at the location considered to have been ancient Pylos—the Milesian point of origin—were "hundreds of inscribed clay tablets baked hard by the fire that destroyed the palace [there]. The tablets are inscribed in the so-called Linear B script found earlier in the palace at Knossos in Crete, as well as . . . in excavations at Mycenae" ("Pylos," Encyclopaedia Britannica, p. 820).
This is a reference to one of two very similar Minoan scripts found in Crete—Linear A and B. Linear B turned out to be an early form of Greek, while Linear A has been the subject of controversy. The late Cyrus Gordon, acclaimed for his translation of Ugaritic, the language of Canaan, is not so respected for his decipherment of Linear A—as he claimed it is Semitic or Hebraic, which modern scholarship has not been quick to embrace. Nevertheless, there is much to support his conclusions (see Gary Rendsburg, "Is Linear A Semitic?," Biblical Archaeology Review, Nov.-Dec. 2000, pp. 60-61).
Though Linear B is Greek, it is interesting to note that it used essentially the same syllabic system as that used in Crete to write what was probably Hebrew. And the Minoan civilization of Crete was closely related to the Mycenaean civilization of southern Greece. This provides yet another link between the Israelites and ancient Greeks.
Moreover, the first-century Roman historian Tacitus wrote: "Some say that the Jews were fugitives from the island of Crete, who settled on the nearest coast of Africa about the time when Saturn was driven from his throne by the power of Jupiter [an apparent blending of myth with fact]. Evidence of this is sought in the name. There is a famous mountain in Crete called Ida; the neighboring tribe, the Idaei, came to be called Judaei by a barbarous [i.e., non-Greco-Roman] lengthening of the national name" (Tacitus, The Histories, Book 5, sec. 2, Great Books of the Western World, 1952, Vol. 15). So it would appear that the tribe of Judah was represented in the early Israelite immigration into Greece.
Surprisingly, there was another Mount Ida "in northwestern Asia Minor, near the site of ancient Troy" ("Ida," Encyclopaedia Britannica, 1985, Vol. 6, p. 238). A publication by the Christian Israel Foundation notes that "perhaps the most striking evidence of an Israelitish migratory settlement in Cretan Mycenae is to be found in [renowned pioneer archaeologist] Sir Arthur Evans’ monumental work, ‘Mycenaean Tree and Pillar Cult,’ in which it is established that Hebrew rituals were observed there . . . This culture moved to Asia Minor, where, behind Troy, we again find a Mount Ida (Judah), and where, as in Miletus, survived the belief in the Cretan royal descent" (The Link, June 1989, p. 261). We will come back to this notion shortly.
Regarding the Trojans, one author writes: "Later Greek myths indicate that they came from the same source as the Mycenaeans, but moved farther north to cross into Asia Minor at the Bosporus, the strait between the Sea of Marmara and the Black Sea in Russia. They then migrated into what is now Turkey. Finally a branch under Ilus founded Troy under the name ‘Ilium’"—hence Homer’s Iliad (I.G. Edmonds, The Mysteries of Homer’s Greeks, 1981, pp. 71-72). The name Troy, according to Greek tradition, came from Ilus’ father Tros.
Quoting a reputedly much older source, a Scottish publication from 1897 mentions Israelites in northwest Asia Minor around the time of the Exodus who were in alliance with the Greeks: "The Hebrews then built an altar to the Lord . . . [thanking Him for their deliverance from] the Egyptians. The king of Greece visited their camps with his Hebrew servant, telling them to build a city and fortify themselves against their enemies . . . [They then] commenced to build the city of Troy" (John MacLaren, The History of Ancient Caledonia, p. 4). Shocking though it seems, this may well be what happened.
Integration with the Trojan Tree
Christian genealogists often attempt to integrate the Greek gods into the Biblical tree by making Zerah the same person as the Greek god Zeus.
The traditional founder of Troy’s famed royal house was Dardanus, a few generations prior to Tros and Ilus: "Dardanus, in Greek legend, the son of Zeus and the Pleiad Electra, mythical founder of Dardania on the Hellespont [the nearby strait separating Dardania from Hellas or Greece now called the Dardanelles]. He was the ancestor of the Dardans of the Troad [the region surrounding Troy] . . .
"According to tradition . . . Dardanus fled from Arcadia [in the middle of Mycenaean Greece] across the sea to Samothrace [a northern Aegean island]. When that island was visited by a flood, he crossed over to the Troad . . . Being hospitably received by Teucer (ruler of Phrygia), he married Teucer’s daughter Bateia and became the founder of the royal house of Troy" ("Dardanus," Encyclopaedia Britannica, Micropaedia, 1985, Vol. 3, p. 884).
In his acclaimed Story of Civilization, historian Will Durant writes: "Who were the Trojans? An Egyptian papyrus mentions certain ‘Dardenui’ as among the allies of the Hittites at the battle of Kadesh (1287 [B.C.]); it is likely that these were the ancestors of the ‘Dardenoi’ who in Homer’s terminology are one with the Trojans. Probably these Dardani were of Balkan [Greek] origin, crossed the Hellespont in the sixteenth century [B.C., though the 15th is perhaps more likely] . . . Herodotus [Greek "father of history" of the fifth century B.C.], however, identified the Trojans with the Teucrians [note the eponymous King Teucer already mentioned], and the Teucrians, according to [the first-century-B.C. Greco-Roman geographer] Strabo, were Cretans who settled in the Troad, perhaps after the fall of Cnossus. Both Crete and the Troad had a sacred Mt. Ida" (Vol.2: The Life of Greece, 1966, p. 35).
This is all becoming much clearer. Again, these people were evidently Israelites—most likely Judahites or Jews. Indeed, even many of the Mycenaean royal houses of southern Greece appear to have sprung from the royal lineage of Crete, which seems to have been Jewish.
It is interesting to consider that, according to Homer, the shields of the Greek leaders in the Trojan War were decorated with heraldic eagles and lions. These were the Israelite tribal emblems of Dan and Judah respectively. The lion also appeared on the shields of the Trojans.
This is made all the more compelling by the following quote from Biblical Archaeologist magazine: "Lions, we may remark, are not frequent in Greece" (March 1996, p. 17). And yet over the "Lion Gate" of Mycenae, an ancient relief of two very large lions flanking a pillar still greets tourists. Virtually the same emblem later appeared across the Aegean in Phrygia in western Turkey—on the rock-cut tomb of Arslantas ("Lion Stone") near Afyon. Perhaps this was due to the symbol being carried by Mycenaean royalty, which was later evidently transferred to Miletus—the Milesians then influencing neighboring Phrygia. Is it possible that in these emblems we are seeing the lion of Judah?
Added to the intriguing possibility is this fact from a Harvard travel publication: "The excavated site of ancient Mycenae extends over a large tract of rough terrain tucked between Mt. Agios Elias to the north and Mt. Zara to the south" (Let’s Go Greece & Turkey, 1998, p. 146, emphasis added). In fact the royal palace sits right at the base of Mount Zara. Could Mycenaean royalty have been descended from Judah’s son Zerah or Zarah—the child of the scarlet thread?
Zerah and the line of Dardanus
Before answering that, we should first take another look at Trojan royalty. When all factors available to us are considered, it would seem that the founder of Troy’s ruling dynasty is not so mythical after all.
Sir William Smith’s Dictionary of the Bible notes that the first-century Jewish historian Flavius Josephus used Dardanus as the Greek form of a biblical name: "Darda . . . Joseph.[us] Dardanos; Darda . . ." (1863, Vol. 1, p. 397). Darda, or Dara, is listed in Scripture as a son of Judah’s son Zerah—the same Zerah who had received the scarlet thread upon his wrist in Genesis 38. "The sons of Zerah were Zimri, Ethan, Heman, Calcol, and Dara—five of them in all" (1 Chronicles 2:6). In 1 Kings 4:31, he is called Darda: "For [Solomon] was wiser than all men—than Ethan the Ezrahite [i.e., Zerahite or Zarhite], and Heman, Chalcol, and Darda, the sons of Mahol; and his fame was in all the surrounding nations."
Yet how could some of these men be sons of Mahol if they were sons of Zerah? A clue occurs in the title of Psalm 89, which gives the author as Ethan the Ezrahite—who obviously lived after David since the psalm speaks of God’s covenant with David and even of later transgression by David’s successors. Therefore, it would appear that the "sons" of Zerah in 1 Chronicles 2:6 must actually mean the descendants of Zerah—which is common usage of the word "sons" in the Bible. And "five of them in all" must mean that among the extended "family of the Zarhites" (Numbers 26:20), there were five who were spoken of together as having a great reputation for wisdom and accomplishment. That Solomon is noted to have outclassed them speaks volumes about them as well. They were undoubtedly internationally famous people who had carried out great exploits.
That the five, including Darda, are not immediate sons of Zerah takes care of a potential discrepancy in this whole identification, since Greek tradition mentions a brother of Dardanus named Jasius or Iasion, who was either killed by Dardanus or struck by lightning (Encyclopaedia Britannica, p. 884). If the five sons of Zerah are descendants of Zerah, this matter is easily resolved.
It is also interesting to note that while the genealogy of the Perez branch of Judah’s family is given in great detail for many generations in Scripture, the genealogical record of Zerah’s family is what you see above—that’s it except for a named son of Ethan (1 Chronicles 2:8) and the infamous Achan of Joshua’s day being listed along with his father and grandfather (verse 7; Joshua 7:17-18, 24).
This lack of information perhaps suggests that most of Zerah’s descendants were no longer present with the main body of the nation. Perhaps they became upset with their secondary status behind Perez, believing it unfair because of the incident with the scarlet thread and Perez’s breach. Whatever the reason, they appear to have migrated elsewhere.
Yet could the biblical Darda truly be the founder of Troy? What of Dardanus’ descent from the Greek god Zeus? A number of royal genealogies based on Homer describe the descent of Trojan royalty as follows: Cronus (or Kronos) – Zeus – Dardanus – Erichthonius – Tros – Ilus – Laomedon – Priam (the king of Troy at the time of the Trojan War in Homer’s Iliad). While this lineage might appear entirely mythical, it should be realized that some ancient myths about the "gods" were actually rooted in stories about real people. In fact, many pagan religions began, in part, as ancestor and hero worship (see Thomas Bulfinch, Bulfinch’s Mythology, "Stories of God’s and Heroes," chap. 25: "Origin of Mythology," 1855, 1979).
With that in mind, it is rather surprising to discover what the ancient Phoenician historian Sanchuniathon (or Sanchoniatho)—who is believed to have lived around the 1200s B.C. (though some put him a few centuries later)—had to say about the identity of Cronus. But first it should be recognized that all material from Sanchuniathon "is derived from the works of Philo of Byblos (flourished AD 100), who claimed to have translated his Phoenicica from the original text. The authenticity of that claim has been questioned, but excavations at Ras Shamra (ancient Ugarit) in Syria in 1929 revealed Phoenician documents supporting much of Sanchuniathon’s information on Phoenician mythology and religious beliefs" ("Sanchuniathon," Encyclopaedia Britannica, 1985, Vol. 10, p. 404).
The writings of Sanchuniathon, as we have them, mention the Greek "Kronos, whom the Phoenicians call Israel . . . He circumcised himself, and forced his allies to do the same" (I.P. Cory, Ancient Fragments, 1828). Israel, as earlier stated, was the new name given to the biblical patriarch Jacob. And the Phoenician historian further explained that this Kronos or Israel had a special son named Jehud or Yehud. This is simply a shortened form of the Hebrew Yehudah, that is, Judah: ". . . evidence of the extent of Judah [later in the fifth century B.C.] are the seal impressions on storage jars . . . on which appear the name ‘Yehud’ in various forms" (Yohanan Aharoni and Michael Avi-Yonah, The Macmillan Bible Atlas, 1977, p. 109).
Since the primary son of the Greek Cronus (Roman Saturn) was Zeus (Roman Jupiter), then Jehud would be the same as Zeus. Indeed, the word Zeus (Zhe-ut) may actually derive from Yehud—as the Roman Jupiter or Iupiter appears to derive from the Greek Zeus-pater or Zheut-pater (pater meaning "father"). Of course, a great deal of Babylonian paganism was overlaid onto these historical characters, creating the false gods of Greek and Roman mythology (see Alexander Hislop, The Two Babylons, 1916, 1959).
Thus, stripped of mythological embellishment, Dardanus son of Zeus son of Kronos is Darda son of Judah son of Israel. Actually, Darda was the grandson, great-grandson or later descendant of Judah—as the word "son" can be interpreted. In any case, Darda was, in fact, a descendant of Judah through the line of Zerah.
Incredibly, an examination of the genealogies of the royal families of Europe shows that nearly all of them trace their lineage back to the house of Troy (see James Anderson, Royal Genealogies or the Genealogical Tables of Emperors, Kings, and Princes, from Adam to These Times, 1736; W.M.H. Milner, The Royal House of Britain: An Enduring Dynasty, 1902). Thus, the scepter did indeed remain with Judah as prophesied. For from the line of Perez came the royal house of David, while from the Zerah line came the royal house of Troy. Yet Troy’s wasn’t the only royal line from Zerah.
The founder of Athens
The Mycenaean house of Atreus also traced its lineage to Zeus (i.e., Judah). And considering the Mount Zara rising above Mycenae, it would seem that this royal line, like that of Troy, sprang from Zerah. Indeed, remember that the Zarhite Dardanus actually came from this area of Greece. Thus it would appear that the Jewish Cretan royal family, evidently of Zerah, was split—with one line going to northwest Turkey and the other going to Mycenaean Greece. Yet they were fused back together when Dardanus married Teucer’s daughter and founded Troy.
How, then, does all of this relate to the Milesians? This publication elsewhere explains that the father of Ireland’s Milesian dynasty from Spain is sometimes given as Miledh, Golamh or Gathelus. He is often called the son of Nel (also Niul or Neolus)—surely the Neleus from whom the Milesians of Asia Minor traced their descent. But Gathelus is sometimes referred to as the son of Cecrops, the founder of Athens in Greek mythology.
So which was it? Was Gathelus the son of Neleus or Cecrops? If "son" is understood to mean descendant, which it almost certainly does here, then he could be the son of both. As noted elsewhere in this publication, Will Durant stated that the Ionians came to Miletus from Attica, the region of Athens (pp.127-129).
The Mycenaean Greeks also traced themselves back to "Achaeus and Ion, who begot the Achaean and Ionian tribes, which, after many wanderings, peopled respectively the Peloponnesus [southern Greece] and Attica [the region of Athens]. One of Ion’s descendants, Cecrops, with the [supposed] help of the goddess Athena, founded . . . the city that was named after her, Athens. It was he, said the story, that gave civilization to Attica, instituted marriage, abolished bloody sacrifices, and taught his subjects to worship the Olympian gods—Zeus and Athena above the rest" (Durant, pp. 39-40).
This is likely a corrupted account of something that actually happened. We’ve already seen Zeus identified with Judah. And Athena may have been named after Athens rather than the other way around. Furthermore, as she was the goddess of wisdom, perhaps Cecrops simply promoted the celebration of wisdom and this was later interpreted as promoting the worship of a goddess. Then again, he may have been thoroughly pagan—we just don’t know.
Intriguingly, while much has been made of Dardanus (and rightly so), some students of this subject have identified Cecrops as one of the other sons of Zerah—Calcol or Chalcol. This might at first appear to be a rather tenuous connection. But there is some evidence to support it.
Consider that of the two scriptural mentions of Calcol and Darda (apparently called the sons of Mahol in the latter), Calcol is mentioned first both times—apparently as the eldest or most prominent. This would seem to indicate that, between the two, the primary royal line from Zerah should be through Calcol. Yet that is rather surprising when we consider Darda as the founder of the royal house of Troy. For what could be more prominent than that? Perhaps, the answer would seem to be, the founder of the royal house of early Athens—a lineage that also seems to have become the dynasty of Miletus and other kingdoms (eventually including Ireland).
Regarding Mahol, some see a relation to the name Miletus. The name Mahol can be rendered in Hebrew as Machol, which means "dance" or, literally, "to move in a circle." This name does seem similar to the promontory just north of Miletus—"Mycale, the central meeting place of all Ionia" (p. 242). It was here that the Ionian cities of Asia Minor would gather for meetings and to celebrate their great festival of song and dance, the Panionium (p. 151). While both Calcol and Darda appear in Scripture to have descended from someone named Mahol or to have been cryptically referred to as "the sons of dance," there is no way to know whether or not "Mahol" is related to Mycale or Miletus.
It is also possible that the word mahol or machol as here applied was actually imported from Greece—that it was the Hebrew transliteration of the Greek word megale, meaning "great." Thus, Calcol and Darda would be the "sons of greatness."
This would lend further credence to Calcol’s identification with the founder of Athens. Of course, there is yet more to go on anyway, not least of which is the fact that on the large island of Euboea right next to Athens, settled by Athenians, was a region called Chalcis (see Appendix 4: "The Colchis Connection").
Furthermore, since there is compelling evidence that Ireland’s Milesian rulers descended from Zerah as this publication elsewhere shows, the first of the Milesian rulers springing from Cecrops would seem to require the Athenian founder to have been a Zarhite too. Because of that, and Calcol’s preeminence above Troy’s founder Darda, it is not unreasonable to identify Calcol with Cecrops—despite how incredible that may sound.
Zerah (Hebrew: זרח, Zẹrakh or Zārakh; Greek: Ζάρα, Zāra; Irish: Zearach; "bright red"), Zara, Zarah
Zerah entered Egypt in the winter of Teveth 2298 AMJanuary 1705 BC Shevat 2055 He Teveth 2298 AM (January 1705 BC). How long he lived after that, the Bible does not say.
The Bible says that Zerah had five sons, each of whom became a clan leader. (1_Chronicles 2:6)
Zerah was the founder of a large clan in the tribe of Judah. The Bible mentions the Zarhite clan in the year before the invasion of Canaan, and therefore the sons of Zerah continued into the land of Israel along with the sons of Pharez. (Numbers 26:20 )
Roberts quotes Diodorus Siculus as saying that:
“ the Egyptians expelled all the aliens gathered together in Egypt. The most distinguished of the expelled foreigners followed Danaus and Cadmus into Greece: but the greater number were led by Moses into Judea."
Roman and Greek legends claim that a man named Dardanus (who gave his name to the Dardanelles, a narrow strait between the Mediterranean and Black Seas) was the founder of Dardania, later called Troy and the ancestor of the Trojans. Some commentators identify this Dardanus with Dara, fifth named son of Zerah, and also identify Calcol, the fourth named son, with King Cecrops I of Athens.
At least one translation of the Antiquities of Flavius Josephus, in mentioning King Solomon as being wiser than two men named Calcol and Dara (or Darda), gives Dara's name as "Dardanos." So perhaps Dara and Dardanus were regarded as the same man during the 1st Century AD.
As a further complication, the Greek poet Homer says that Dardanus was a son (or descendant) of Zeus, the chief of the Greek gods., The Roman and Greek legends say that Zeus (called Jupiter in Latin) was a son of Saturn who was also called Kronus. Writing of the Greek gods, Sanchuniathon, a Phoenician historian, says that "Kronus, whom the Phoenicians called Israel, had a son Jehud."
Thus according to Homer and Sanchuniathon, Dardanus (who founded the Trojan kingdom) was a descendant of Jehud (Judah) whose father was Israel.
Various Irish traditions declare that Míl Espáine, the ancestor of the Gaels, was a descendant of Zerah. According to The Harmsworth Encyclopedia, Cecrops (identified as "Calcol" of 1_Chronicles 2:6 and "Chalcol" of 1_Kings 4:31 – son of Zerah and brother of Darda) was the 'mythical' founder of Athens and its first king. He is thought to be the leader of a band of Hebrew colonists from Egypt around 1700 BC.
Historical records tell of the westward migration of the descendants of Calcol along the shores of the Mediterranean Sea, establishing "Iberian" (Hebrew) trading settlements. One settlement now called "Zaragoza" or "Saragossa", in the Ebro Valley in Spain, was originally known as "Zaragassa," meaning "The stronghold of Zerah." From Spain they continued westward as far as Ireland. The Iberians gave their name to Ireland, calling the island Iberne which was later abbreviated to Erne, and subsequently Latinized to Hibernia.
Zerah or Zérach "Sunrise"," , the successor of Shishak on the throne of Egypt. With an enormous army, the largest we read of in Scripture, he invaded the Kingdom of Judah in the days of Asa (2 Chr. 14:9-15). He reached Zephathah, and there encountered the army of Asa. This is the only instance "in all the annals of Judah of a victorious encounter in the field with a first-class heathen power in full force." The Egyptian host was utterly routed, but the Hebrews gathered "exceeding much spoil." Three hundred years elapsed before another Egyptian army, that of Necho (609 BC), came up against Jerusalem. 2. A son of Tamar (Gen. 38:30); called also Zara (Matt. 1:3). Zerah was the twin of Pharez (Perets); when Zerah stuck his hand out, the midwife tied a red string around it, then Pharez came out fully, but then Zerah, who was named for sticking his hand out first and not coming out first. And the sons of Zerah; Zimri, and Ethan, and Heman, and Calcol, and Dara: five of them in all.
Judah is the fourth son of the patriarch Jacob and his first wife, Leah: his full brothers are Reuben, Simeon and Levi (all older), and Issachar and Zebulun (younger), and he has six half brothers.
The brothers become jealous of the second youngest, Joseph, who is favoured by their father Jacob and who tells them of dreams in which they bow down to him. One day the brothers went off to pasture their flocks and Joseph, loving his older brothers and wanting to be included went after them. He wasn't sure where they had gone but a man, who is thought to be an angel by commentaries, showed him the direction his brothers ventured off in. Joseph reaches his brothers and they make fun of him and taunt him. Reuben, being the eldest, took control of the situation and didn't want his brothers to kill Joseph so he suggested that they throw him into a nearby pit. The brothers take away Joseph's tunic and throw him into the empty pit without food or water. While the whole scene is unfolding they see a caravan of Ishmaelites coming towards them with camels bearing spices, on the way to Egypt. Judah, the strongest of the brothers, steps up and says that instead of killing their brother they should sell him to the Ishmaelites and so the brothers did exactly that. Joseph was sold to the Ishmaelites for 20 silver pieces and brought down to Egypt. To hide the evidence and create a cover story the brothers dipped Joseph's coat in fresh goat's blood and showed it to Jacob, saying he had been killed by the wolves of Canaan.
Judah married the daughter of Shua, a Canaanite. Genesis chapter 38 Judah and his wife had three children, Er, Onan, and Shelah. Er married Tamar, but God killed him because he was wicked. Tamar became Onan's wife in accordance with custom, but God killed him because he refused to fulfill his duty to her as a brother-in-law to raise up offspring for Er by spilling his semen. Tamar should have married Shelah, the remaining brother, but Judah did not give him to her. She deceived Judah into having sex with her by pretending to be a prostitute, and when Judah discovered that Tamar was pregnant he prepared to have her killed, but when he discovered that he was the father, he recanted and confessed  that he had used a prostitute. Tamar's sons by her father-in-law were the twins Pharez and Zerah, the fourth and fifth sons of Judah. Pharez in turn was an ancestor of David.(Genesis 38:1-30)
other sources say:
b: abt 1738 bc d: 1638 bc - Rameses, Goshen, Egypt
Zerah .'s Timeline
Ramses, Goshen, Egypt
Ramses, Goshen, Egypt
Hebron, Canaan, Palestine
Rameses, Goshen, Egypt
April 1, -1