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Are there any Jewish people alive today who can identify themselves as coming from a particular tribe?

Does every Jew know his tribe? I heard that every Jew has the name of his tribe written somewhere inside of his hat that he is wearing. Is it true?

marked as duplicate by Yaakov Kuperman, Shmuel Brin, Hacham Gabriel, Double AA, Ernest Friedman-Hill Apr 18 '12 at 2:33

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No, and no. The only thing I have written in my hat is my name and number so I can be contacted if I lose it.

In general, Jews today do not know what tribe they are from, with the exception of Levites and Kohanim (Jewish priests). Both come from the tribe of Levi, and anyone who is a Levite or a Kohen has a family tradition that they indeed come from the tribe of Levi.

I think that this question might be a duplicate of Are there any Jewish people alive today who can identify themselves as coming from a particular tribe?. Yaakov Ellis' answer over there covers this and more.

  • Even they aren't so positive about their affiliation (which is why kohanim don't eat chalah nowadays) – Shmuel Brin Apr 18 '12 at 0:26
  • @ShmuelBrin True. I'll clarify. – HodofHod Apr 18 '12 at 0:27
  • @ShmuelBrin While I've seen these behaviors before, I've never learned the rationale for them. If you know any more examples/reasons, please feel free to edit them in. – HodofHod Apr 18 '12 at 0:31
  • @ShmuelBrin Some Cohanim refrain from eating Challah in Chu"l based on the Rama who rules like the Rosh that one who is tameh met cannot eat challat Chul. Many Cohanim rely on the Shulchan Aruch and do indeed eat challat Chul after dipping in a mikveh to get rid of Tum'at Keri. See my answer here and the Shulchan Aruch quoted in it. – Baal Shemot Tovot Apr 18 '12 at 0:40
  • @هه So all Kohanim that don't eat chalah don't for this reason? And everything else they behave as Kohanim? In your view, is there any basis for "they aren't so positive about their affiliation "? – HodofHod Apr 18 '12 at 0:51

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