One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
(in the Bible) a Hebrew patriarch, the younger of the twin sons of Isaac and Rebecca, who persuaded his brother Esau to sell him his birthright and tricked him out of his father's blessing (Gen. 25, 27). The twelve tribes of ancient Israel were descended from his twelve sons.
From Hebrew ya‘aqōḇ ‘following after, supplanter’.
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