Biblical and Historical Sources
Continued from Ancient Hebrew Redheads-1
The Ancient Hebrews consisted of numerous phenotypes, Some were dark haired, brown haired, some were blond, and some had red hair. Here are red-headed Hebrews as depicted by the Egyptians.
Here are redheads from Canaan, possibly Hebrews.
Here are blondish-redhaired Hebrews.
Both Esau (Genesis 25:25) and David (1-Samuel 16:12, 17:42) had Red Hair. [A red-headed person in Hebrew is called an "Admoni." This is often translated as meaning "ruddy" but in Jewish tradition it refers to red hair.]
GENESIS (NKJV) 25:
24 SO WHEN HER DAYS WERE FULFILLED FOR HER TO GIVE BIRTH, INDEED THERE WERE TWINS IN HER WOMB.
5 AND THE FIRST CAME OUT RED. HE WAS LIKE A HAIRY GARMENT ALL OVER; SO THEY CALLED HIS NAME ESAU.
6 AFTERWARD HIS BROTHER CAME OUT, AND HIS HAND TOOK HOLD OF ESAU'S HEEL; SO HIS NAME WAS CALLED JACOB. ISAAC WAS SIXTY YEARS OLD WHEN SHE BORE THEM.
David had red hair.
1-SAMUEL (NKJV) 16:
12 SO HE SENT AND BROUGHT HIM IN. NOW HE WAS RUDDY [Hebrew; "Admoni" i.e. red-haired], WITH BRIGHT EYES, AND GOOD-LOOKING. AND THE LORD SAID, 'ARISE, ANOINT HIM; FOR THIS IS THE ONE!' 13 THEN SAMUEL TOOK THE HORN OF OIL AND ANOINTED HIM IN THE MIDST OF HIS BROTHERS; AND THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD CAME UPON DAVID FROM THAT DAY FORWARD. SO SAMUEL AROSE AND WENT TO RAMAH.
1-SAMUEL (NKJV) 17:
42 AND WHEN THE PHILISTINE LOOKED ABOUT AND SAW DAVID, HE DISDAINED HIM; FOR HE WAS ONLY A YOUTH, RUDDY [Hebrew; "Admoni" - red-haired] AND GOOD-LOOKING.
Here are Hebrew women with black hair.
Here is an Egyptian picture of a Hebrew with a red beard.
Esau was also known as Edom. He became the ancestor of elite leading groups in Europe and Asia (Russia, Germany, Turkey, Japan, etc.) and elsewhere.
Here are some non-Israelite rulers of Gentile nations some of whom may be descended from Esau.
Frederick Barbarossa (1122 - 1190), also known as Frederick-1 ( was the Holy Roman Emperor from 1155 until his death 35 years later. Barbarossa means "red beard" in Italian; in German, he was known as Kaiser Rotbart, which means "Emperor Redbeard" in English. In 1152 he was crowned King of Germany, after that King of Italy, and after that Holy Roman Emperor. He was a powerful ruler, a formidable warrior. Frederick died in 1190 in Asia Minor (Turkey) while leading an army in the Third Crusade intending to conquer the Holy Land. In German Tradition he became a kind of Messianic Figure who would return in the End Times.
Princess Elizabeth of Poland (1326 -1361) was married to Bogislaw-5, Duke of Pomerania (1318-1374). They both have red hair. Their families were intermarried with those of the Holy Roman Emperors and the German and Polish and Hungarian aristocracy.
The Poles were often anti-Jewish but a certain ambivalence prevailed. During WW2 many Poles turned against the Jews and helped the Germans persecute them. They seized Jewish houses and properties when the Nazis threw the Jews out. At the end of the War when some Jews tried to return and reclaim their homes they would be driven away and beaten up and in some cases killed. The Jews learned not to return and went to Displaced Persons Camps in Germany. From there they moved to other places especially Israel and the USA. On the other hand many Poles had helped Jews to escape. They did this while risking their lives and that of all their families. There are more Poles with Righteous Among the Nations awards (from "Yad Vashem" in srael), for saving Jews than from any other country!
So too, even today the Poles have mixed attitudes towards the Jews. There is much anti-Semitism on one side and on the other the Jews are often recalled favorably. Many Polish Gentiles acquire dolls depicting traditional Jews. These are said to bring luck to the household. These dolls are often images of Jews with red-beards.
Ismail-1 ( 1487 - 1524), also known as Shah Ismail was the founder of the Safavid dynasty of Iran, ruling as its King of Kings (shahanshah) from 1501 to 1524. His reign is often considered the beginning of modern Iranian history. He made Twelver denomination of Shia Islam the official religion of his newly-founded Persian Empire. This was the beginning of Iran as the champion of Shiite Islam. Iran today is the major Shiite power. Islam is divided into the Shiites and Sunnis. The ancestry of Ismail was mixed, from various ethnic groups such as Georgians, Greeks, Kurds and Turkomans
He declared himself to be the Mahdi a kind of Muslim Messiah. Here is a Map of Sunni and Shiite Islam. Iran is the major Shiite country. In addition to iIran, Iraq now is mainly controlled by pro-Iranian Shiites. Southern Lebanon is controlled by the Shiite Hizbollah agents of Iran. Azerbaijan though officially Shiite has a population which is more secular in its inclinations. Yemen is controlled by the Shiite Houthis but most Yemenites are Sunnis.
Today Iran is building an atom bomb. The leaders of Iran have announced their intention to use this bomb against the Jews in Israel!
Throughout History numerous other rulers of Gentile non-Israelite nations have had red hair. They may in part have been descended from Esau the twin brother of Jacob. Esau had red hair and his descendants were destined to become the arch-enemies of the Israelites who descend from Jacob.
Jacob was renamed Israel.
GENESIS (NKJV) 32:
28 AND HE SAID, 'YOUR NAME SHALL NO LONGER BE CALLED JACOB, BUT ISRAEL; FOR YOU HAVE STRUGGLED WITH GOD AND WITH MEN, AND HAVE PREVAILED.'
GENESIS (NKJV) 35:
10 AND GOD SAID TO HIM, 'YOUR NAME IS JACOB; YOUR NAME SHALL NOT BE CALLED JACOB ANYMORE, BUT ISRAEL SHALL BE YOUR NAME.' SO HE CALLED HIS NAME ISRAEL.
Jacob had 12 sons who became the 12 Tribes of Israel. They divided into 2 sections. The southern part gave rise to the Kingdom of Judah which comprised the Tribes of Judah, Benjamin, Levi, and minority representatives of all the other Tribes. From this section derive the present-day Jewish People.
Among the Jews redhair is quite common but not overwhelming even though some Gentiles seem to think so.
Here is a picture of Judas with red-hair.
Shylock is the name of a Jewish Moneylender in Venice. He is a fictional character delineated by William Shakespeare' in his play "The Merchant of Venice" (c. 1600).
The name Shylock is actually an English Gentile family name many of whom traded in gold, etc, or worked as letter-writers, etc. For some reason they were identified as Jews!
If you had been Shylock in Shakespeare's 'The Merchant of Venice', what would you have done?
The plot of 'The Merchant of Venice' by William Shakespeare concerns a Christian merchant in Venice of the 1500s who must default on a large loan provided by a Jewish moneylender. The Jew is named 'Shylock.' The Christian hero and his friends regularly insult Shylock. The contract says that if the Christian defaults he must pay with a pound of flesh. The Jew demands payment as written. In the end Shylock is denied the right to take the life of the Christian. He is humiliated. His daughter is married to a Christian. The young couple take what remains of his fortune. Shylock is impoverished and forced, on pain of death, to convert to Christianity. The treatment of Shylock by his Christian adversaries is presented as self-obvious and proper though some ambivalence remains.
Previously there had been a TRUE report from Italy (reported by the historian, Cecil Roth) in which a Christian demanded a pound of flesh as payment of a debt from a Jew. This case of Christian vindictiveness may have been transformed into a tale illustrating alleged Jewish rapacity. The transformation from victim to culprit would have already taken place in literary sources before reaching Shakespeare. He may well have believed it. Shakespeare may have been dealing with what he mistakenly understood to have been an historical event.
Heinrich Heine (1839) relates:
When I saw this piece played in Drury Lane there stood behind me in the box a British beauty who, at the end of the fourth Act, wept passionately, and many times cried out, 'The poor man is wronged!' It was a countenance of noblest Grecian cut, and the eyes were large and black. I have never been able to forget them, those great black eyes which wept for Shylock!
When I think of those tears... Shakespeare perhaps intended originally to please the mob... But the genius of the poet... was ever stronger than in his own will, and so it came to pass that Shylock, despite the glaring grotesqueness, expressed the justification of an unfortunate sect which was oppressed by providence....
Shylock was often depicted with red hair.
Here are Jewish Rabbis with red hair;
An Orthodox Jewish Religious boy with red hair.
We have a few pictures of Jews from Biblical times but none (as far as we known ) that tell us what color hair they had.
A Jewish King as depicted by Egyptians.
A Jewish King as dawn by Judaeans in Ancient Judah.
In addition to the Ten Tribes a portion of the Jews of Judah were also exiled by the Assyrians. Here is an Assyrian depiction of a Jewish solider serving in the Royal Bodyguard in the palace of the Assyrian King.
Here is an Assyrian illustration of Jewish exiles from the area of Lachish in the south as illustrated by the Assyrians.
The northern section of Israel comprised 10 Tribes.
Here is an Egyptian engraving showing Israelite local rulers from the Northern Kingdom before they were exiled.
The Ten Tribes were exiled by the Assyrians and lost awareness of their origin but still stayed together. They became the Lost Ten Tribes. They eventually moved to Western Europe. They are now to be found mixed in with the populations of Finland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Netherlands, Belgium, France, Switzerland, Scotland, England, Wales, Ireland, Northern Ireland, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and other places. Here too we find many who had red hair.
To be Continued.
Israelite Racial Color
a. Bible Sources
Ancient Israelite Physical Types
THE PHYSICAL ANTHROPOLOGY OF THE HEBREW PEOPLES
Redheads in History articles/race/redheads.html
A Partial List In Rough Chronological Order