Reuben - Eldest son of Jacob (Gen. 29:32; 30:14; 35:22–23; 37:21–22, 29; 42:22, 37; Num. 26:5); settled east of Jordan (Num. 32); the special characteristics of the tribe are referred to in Gen. 49:3; Deut. 33:6. The tribe’s numbers gradually diminished, and though it continued to exist as a tribe, it became politically unimportant. In Judg. 5:15–16, it is reproached by Deborah for its indifference during a time of national peril. For other references see Josh. 4:12; 13:15–23; 18:7; 22; 1 Chr. 5:1, 3, 18; Ezek. 48:6–7, 31; Rev. 7:5. Levite cities in, Josh. 20:8; 21:7, 36; 1 Chr. 6:63, 78. Dathan and Abiram, men of Reuben, Num. 16:1; Deut. 11:6; Bohan, son of Reuben, Josh. 15:6; 18:17.

Although Reuben was the firstborn of Jacob and Leah, he lost his birthright because of transgression (Gen. 35:22; 49:3–4). The blessing therefore came upon Joseph, the firstborn of Jacob and Rachel (1 Chr. 5:1–2).

Marriage and Family

According to Genesis 46:9, Reuben had four sons: Hanoch, Pallu, Hezron, and Carmi. The name of his wife/wives are not given. According to Joshua 15:6, a stone of Bohan, the son of Reuben marked a point along the boundary of the land allocated to the tribe of Judah.

According to the Book of Jasher, Chapter 45, Reuben's wife was Eliuram the daughter of Ewi the Canaanite (of Timnah).

Genesis Narrative

And the sons of Reuben; Hanoch, and Phallu, and Hezron, and Carmi.
Genesis 46:9 - KJV translation


Offspring of Reuben and Eliuram, daughter of Ewi the Canaanite
Name Birth Death Joined with
Hanoch ben Reuben
Pallu ben Reuben
Hezron ben Reuben
Carmi ben Reuben



Footnotes (including sources)


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