with it being reframed as constituting the Israelites' inspiring national myth narrative.The Israelites and their culture, according to the modern archaeological account, did not overtake the region by force, but instead branched out of the Canaanite peoples and culture through the development of a distinct monolatristic—and later monotheistic—religion centered on Yahweh, one of the Ancient Canaanite deities.The genetic composition of different Jewish groups shows that Jews share a common genetic pool dating back 4,000 years, as a marker of their common ancestral origin.Despite their long-term separation, Jewish communities maintained commonalities in culture, tradition, and language.The ethnic stock to which Jews originally trace their ancestry was a confederation of Iron Age semitic-speaking tribes known as the Israelites that inhabited a part of Canaan during the tribal and monarchic periods.According to the Hebrew Bible narrative, Jewish ancestry is traced back to the Biblical patriarchs such as Abraham, his son Isaac, Isaac's son Jacob, and the Biblical matriarchs Sarah, Rebecca, Leah, and Rachel, who lived in Canaan.The Cyrus Cylinder, an ancient tablet on which is written a declaration in the name of Cyrus referring to restoration of temples and repatriation of exiled peoples, has often been taken as corroboration of the authenticity of the biblical decrees attributed to Cyrus, Professor Lester L.
Israel is the only country where Jews form a majority of the population.
The modern State of Israel was established as a Jewish state and defines itself as such in its Declaration of Independence and Basic Laws.
Its Law of Return grants the right of citizenship to any Jew who requests it., Yehudim (pl.), in origin the term for a member of the tribe of Judah or the people of the kingdom of Judah.
The patriarchs' descendants were later enslaved until the Exodus led by Moses, after which the Israelites conquered Canaan under Moses' successor Joshua, went through the period of the Biblical judges after the death of Joshua, then through the mediation of Samuel became subject to a king, Saul, who was succeeded by David and then Solomon, after whom the United Monarchy ended and was split into a separate Kingdom of Israel and a Kingdom of Judah.
The Kingdom of Judah is described as comprising the Tribe of Judah, the Tribe of Benjamin, and partially the Tribe of Levi, and later adding other tribes who migrated there from the Kingdom of Israel.