Perez was the son of Judah by his daughter-in-law, the Canaanite woman Tamar. He was the twin brother of Zerah.

Tamar had been the wife of Judah's elder sons Er and Onan (via Levirate marriage; cf. Deuteronomy 25:5-10). After Onon died, Judah refused to let Tamar marry his yougest son, Shelah. Tamar then disguised herself as a prostitute, bearing Perez and Zerah. (Genesis 38, 46:12). Although biologically Judah's sons, they were legally Er's sons; however, Leviticus 18:15 forbids sexual relationships between a man and his daughter-in-law.

Perez had two sons, Hezron and Hamul.

According to the genealogy provided in the Book of Ruth (4:18-22), Perez was an ancestor of King David. The Gospels of Matthew and Luke also mention him in their genealogies.


  • Genesis 38
  • Ruth 4:18-22
  • 1 Chronicles 2:4-5, 4:1,
  • Matthew 1:3
  • Luke 3:33
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