Jewish History: Biblical History: Twelve or Thirteen Tribes:
Were there 12 or 13 tribes?
In Gen.48:5-6 Yaakov "adopted" Yoseph's sons Ephrayim and Menasheh
as his own sons. As a result, instead of one tribe of Yoseph's
descendants, there are two tribes, one descended from Ephrayim
and the other from Menasheh, making the total number of tribes 13.
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