Was Taphah the Daughter of Solomon the Real Tea Tephi of Irish Tradition? (30 April, 2013, Iyar 20, 5773)
A question concerning Tea Tephi the legendary Jewish Princess who came to Ireland came our way.
Monte Benson wrote:
...I am trying to understand how the throne of David ended up in Ireland, Scotland, and then Britain if it did not come through a daughter of Zedekiah. Or do you agree with the idea that Jeremiah came to Ireland with a daughter of Zedekiah? Also, if the throne of David arrived in Ireland in the early sixth century B.C. when and how did the House of Israel arrive there to be ruled over? Did they come with the Danites before the sixth century B.C. or did they come from the Scythians or Cimmerians after 733 B.C.?
The story of Tea Tephi for some reason has a great attraction for very many people. People want to believe it! Maybe there is something in it? More work needs to be done and as our knowledge stands at present the historical basis for Tea Tephi is very doubtful.
In Lost Israelite Identity (now to be called "Hebrew Ancestry") ch.12, we made the following suggestion:
"All the region of Dor" became one of the 12 administrative districts into which the Land of Israel was divided by King Solomon and it was governed by Abinadab who "had Taphah the daughter of Solomon to wife" (1-Kings 4:11).
Maybe "Taphah the daughter of Solomon" (1-Kings 4:11) is linked with 'Tephi' (cf. 'Taphah'?) or 'Tea Tephi' who according to Irish legend was a princess who came from the east accompanied by a certain Simon Berach. Tephi married one of the Irish Kings and thus became an ancestress of the British Kings of England and Scotland. Attempts have been made to equate 'Simon Berach' with Baruch ben Neria. The Book of Jeremiah relates how after Jerusalem was captured by the Babylonians a group of Jews fled to Tahpanhes in Egypt and they forced Jeremiah, Baruch ben Neriah and the king's daughters to go with them (Jeremiah 43:6-7). These daughters of the king were those of the deposed monarch of Judah and Jeremiah supposedly had charge of them. Tea Tephi has been identified as one of these daughters of the king and the idea arose that not only Baruch ben Neriah but also Jeremiah himself came with Tea Tephi to Ireland.
"Taphah the daughter of Solomon" married Abinadab who administered the important region of Dor on the coast in Manasseh. Maybe they gave rise to a local dynasty of their own? Indications are that former Israelite inhabitants of Dor were to form a kind of group in their own right and are to be identified later in the West. We have traced them to Spain as part of Israelites settlers who did later pass over to Ireland.
We do not know whether or not the Throne of David came to Ireland. We know that Israelite Tribes did.
The nearest we have come at present to solving the question is the following:
We know that some of the Kings of the Scythian Tribes were believed to be descended from David. Examples include the Scythian rulers of Sakastan (eastern Iran), Iberia (Caucasus), and the Ruling House of the Khazars. We also know that the ruling houses of all the major Scythian and Gothic groups were interrelated. From these came the Angles and Saxons and related peoples who moved to Britain, Scandinavia, and other areas in the West.
A similar situation may have prevailed amongst some of the "Celtic" groups in the British Isles.
From these ancestors the present day monarchs of Western Nations may be descended.
All of the above may not seem much to go on but it does contain possibilities. We ourselves would not normally concentrate on this issue in our researches. We might however keep it in mind and take note if, while examining other matters, relevant information turns up.
See Also: Sons of David