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
Hebrew Bible/Old Testament's Genealogy from Adam to David
v  d  e
Creation to Flood Adam Seth Enosh Kenan Mahalalel Jared Enoch Methuselah Lamech Noah Shem
Origin of the Patriarchs Arpachshad Shelah Eber Peleg Reu Serug Nahor Terah Abraham Isaac Jacob
Nationhood to Kingship Judah Pharez Hezron Ram Amminadab Nahshon Salmon Boaz Obed Jesse David

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