History of The Lost Tribes of Israel
Hallstatt, Austria. Home of a major iron age Celtic archeological site
The story of the The Lost Tribes of Israel is a fascinating one. Tangled in myth, mysticism and tradition, plus cultural and religious self-interest, they were believed lost to history. However, the Lost Tribes "Lost" time is over and the implications of their "return" are profound.
Four Thousand years ago, Abraham (a great-great grandson of Shem, and a son of Noah) and a small group of Hebrews (of which there were & are many varieties) migrated from southern Iraq to Canaan. Canaan was located in the same general region as Israel today but much larger.
Several generations later, around 1853 BC, Abraham's Grandson Jacob (who was renamed Israel) and his 12 Sons and families moved from Canaan to Egypt. As offspring of Shem, they were called Shemites or Semites as were his many other offspring.
~1453 BC, now as the 12 Tribes of the 12 Sons of Israel, and over 3 Million strong, these Semites bailed out of Egypt in the well-documented overland EXODUS and fled back to Canaan. But the Tribes "couldn't all get along" there, so ~922 BC these 5 Million Israelites split into separate Northern and Southern Kingdoms.
5 Million people is about the same size as Ireland, or Norway, or Denmark or Israel today. The combined tribes in these 2 Kingdoms made up 10% of the estimated 50 Million world population at that time.
The world population today is over ONE HUNDRED TIMES that large. If compared with today's 6 Billion people, the Israelites relative world population (~1/10th) would be 600 Million, or nearly twice as large as is the United States of America today! The Israelites at the time of the big split were neither a tiny nor insignificant presence on the earth.
The very large Northern Kingdom of Israel was made up of 10 of the Tribes. Inheriting the Kingdom names and promises which applied to all 12 Tribes before the split, the Northern Kingdom (alone) becomes known as the Kingdom of Israel or House of Israel, (also the House of Joseph, House of Ephraim, House of Isaac, and House of Omri) and is led by the northern Tribe of Ephraim.
Two hundred years later these Northern Israelites were taken into captivity by the nearby Assyrians (~722 BC) and relocated to the northern Fertile Crescent area of Iraq/Iran.
But they were not diligent in updating their eMail addresses, thus were called, by some, the "Lost Tribes", or "Lost Sheep" or "Lost Children" of the Kingdom or House of Israel. However being ~1/12 or more of the worlds population it seems highly unlikely these 'Northerners' would actually disappear, or "get lost", or "assimilate". The global population is now ~75 Million.
A hundred years later this "lost" Northern Kingdom of Israel with now over 6 Million Israelites helped the Medes and Persians overthrow the Assyrians, then escaped north and west through the Caucasus Mountains and southward around the Black and Caspian Seas to explode into history ~610 BC as The Celts.
These Celts mixed with (and fought against) each other and with other scattered Israelites (called proto-Celts) who had escaped from Egypt by sea nearly a thousand years earlier, before the Exodus. There were additional Israelites (more proto-Celts) who migrated from Palestine after the Exodus but prior to the Assyrian captivity. These proto-Celts established important early Celtic or proto-Celtic outposts in Europe and elsewhere.
These combined Millions of Celts grew to become Tens, then Hundreds of Millions as they migrated in waves westward and northwest to Galatia, Ephesus, Corinth, Thessalonica, Philippi, Colossi, and to what is today Hallstatt, Austria and Neuchatel, Switzerland (where exist major Celtic digs and museums) and beyond, to develop and totally dominate Northern and Western Europe.
These Celts (also known as Angles, Saxons, Jutes, Vandals, Danes, Normans, Cimmerians, Scythians, Gauls, Lombards, Belgae, Danaoi, Massagetae, Milesians, Masilia, Sarmatians, Germani, Goths, Franks and other assorted "Barbarians" including the so-called "Germanic" tribes) are the rootstock of today's Europeans and Americans, and became the backbone of global Christianity.
The slightly smaller Southern
Kingdom was made up of the Tribe of Judah
& a mix of Levites
It was also known as the
House of Judah.
Most of these
Judea were taken captive in ~587 BC and removed to Babylon. Only
~50,000 returned to Palestine ~70 years later.
and their offspring are called
This FAQ is a detailed source of reference information about the Israelites in general, and the Lost Tribes / Celts / Europeans & Americans / Christians in particular. What follows are questions posed to the author over the years and answers taken from that correspondence.
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This site is about HISTORY, both Archeological and Biblical. It is NOT about Christian or Jewish Identity, British Israelism, White Power or anti-Semitism. Nor is it about Culture or Tradition. It is not anti-anything or anybody. It is simply about HISTORY.