Where did the Name Jewish/Jews orignate from?

There was no race in the beginning and God called His people His choosen ones who later became known as the Israelites. So how or who named the Israelites the Jewish Nation and called these people Jews or Jewish people?

12 Answers

  • Amy R
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    It is a corruption of the Hebrew word that they used for themselves. It is all explained in the link below.

  • 4 years ago

    This Site Might Help You.


    Where did the Name Jewish/Jews orignate from?

    There was no race in the beginning and God called His people His choosen ones who later became known as the Israelites. So how or who named the Israelites the Jewish Nation and called these people Jews or Jewish people?

    Source(s): jewish jews orignate from: https://shortly.im/0znWy
  • 1 decade ago

    Those words are derived from Judah, the most powerful of the 12 original tribes and the name of the southern kingdom after the Kingdom of David and Solomon split. After the northern kingdom, Israel, was destroyed, the remaining kingdom continued to be known as Judah, although the term Israel was also used because it originally referred to all of the Chosen People.

  • 1 decade ago

    An interesting thing happens in the Bible right in the middle of the Joseph story. Suddenly the story stops. We leave off Joseph and return to the land of Canaan to pick up the story of Judah, the fourth oldest of the 12 brothers. And it is not immediately clear why we need to be informed of this slice out of Judah's life at this point in the narrative. (See Book of Genesis, Chapter 38.)

    We learn that Judah had three sons and the oldest married a woman named Tamar. He died. Then, according to Jewish law, the second son married Tamar. He also died. Tamar is in line to marry the third son, but Judah stalls. Realizing Judah will not honor the law, and seeing herself growing older and childless, Tamar decides to take the matters into her own hands.

    As the Bible tells it, she disguises herself as a prostitute and seduces Judah, who promises her a goat in payment for her services. She holds onto his staff and seal as collateral, but when he arrives with the goat, the "prostitute" is nowhere to be found.

    Shortly thereafter, it is discovered that Tamar is pregnant and she is sentenced to death for her promiscuity. Despite her situation, she does not embarrass Judah by revealing that he is the father of her unborn child. Instead, she sends the staff and seal with the request, "Please, recognize to whom this belongs."

    These are the very words that Judah had spoken to his father Jacob, when -- after having sold Joseph into slavery -- he and his brothers took Joseph's coat and smeared it with the blood of a goat. They had claimed at the time that Joseph must have been devoured by wild animals.

    With the words that remind him of his great sin echoing in his head, Judah confesses, "She is more righteous than I."

    Through his admission of guilt, Judah becomes the first person in the Bible to accept responsibility willingly, thereby becoming the archetypal example of sincere and wholehearted repentance. In this he is the model Jewish leader, and the mantle of kingship will forever after belong to the tribe of Judah. His descendants will be King David and King Solomon, as well as the prophesied Messiah. Indeed, the Jews are called Jews after Judah.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Because of the son of Solomon raising taxes, the kingdom split into two nations, Israel and Judah. Those of Judah were called Judaens then latter it was reduced to Jewish or a Jew. It's roots are to the word "praise".

    The word Hebrew is thought to come from the name "Eber" who was in the line of Noah's son, Shem.

  • Daniel
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    Okay, so the Bible identifies Abraham as the first Hebrew ("Ivri" in the original). In the modern sense, "Jew" and "Hebrew" are theoretically interchangeable, although "Hebrew" nowadays is primarily used to refer to the language, rather than the people who speak it.

    G-d promised Abraham that his progeny would become a great nation, and that all the nations of the world would be blessed through his descendants.

    The recipient of Abraham's spiritual heritage was Isaac. Isaac passed it on to Jacob. Jacob was given the name "Israel," after the incident where he wrestled with an angel (check your Bible). The children of Jacob are Israelites. Ten of the Israelite tribes were exiled when the Assyrians invaded, and various theories exist as to where these "Lost Tribes" wound up. The Jews of today are the spiritual, and in most cases biological, descendants of Israel. And most of them are descended from Israel's son Judah (Yehudah). That's where "Jew" (or "Yehudi" in other languages) comes from.

    Not all Jews today are Judean, however. Some are Benjaminites (the Southern Kingdom of Judah, that wasn't exiled until much later and whose descendants largely remained Jewish, consisted primarily of the tribes of Judah and Benjamin). Others are Levites (tribe of Levi), and others still are specifically descendants of Aaron, and are called Kohanim ("Priests"). Because specific tribal affiliation passed through the father (unlike Jewishness itself, which comes from the mother), one can sometimes deduce a person's tribal affiliation through their last name. Levi'im (Levites) often have surnames like "Levi," "Levy," "Lewin," etc. Common Kohein surnames include "Cohen," "Kahana," and "Katz" (this last one is an abbreviation for "Kohein TZedek" or "Righteous Priest").

    Whether specifically from Judah or not, all of the above groups are referred to as "Jews". And it makes sense even to refer to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob as the first Jews even though they came before Judah, because they are the patriarchs and earliest practitioners of the religion that would later come to be called Judaism. However, you could not call them "Israelites," because they are not children of Israel (that last one IS Israel).

    I hope this answers your question - for further reading, please check my list of answers. Several of them address this very same question, and the others you might also find of interest. If you have any further questions, feel free to contact me directly.

  • 1 decade ago

    Just to correct one of the posters--the word "Hebrew"--which of course is in English--does **not** come from one of Shem' sons. In fact, the word derives from the Hebrew word "ivri" which means "one from the other side," in reference to the River Euphrates.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    It comes from the province of Judah, Israel in ancient times

  • Chris
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    It comes from Yehudah, which means "Praise" in Hebrew.

  • 1 decade ago

    Bastardizaton of the word Hebrew...

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