The Banners of the twelve tribes
Labels: Jewish Symbols
The Midrash describes the banners of the twelve tribes as follows:
There were distinguishing signs for each prince; each had a flag (mappah) and a different color for every flag corresponding to the precious stones on the breastplate (lit. "heart") of Aaron. It was from these that governments learned to provide themselves with flags of various colors. Each tribe had its own prince and its flag whose color corresponded to the color of its stone.
Reuben's stone was ruby, the color of his flag was red, and embroidered
thereon were mandrakes.
Simeon's was topaz and his flag was green, with the town of Shechem
Levi's was smaragd and the color of his flag was a third white, a third black,
and a third red; embroidered thereon were the Urim and Thummim.
Judah's was a carbuncle, and the color of his flag resembled that of the
heavens, embroidered on it was a lion.
Issachar's was a sapphire and the color of his Flag was black like stibium;
embroidered thereon were the sun and the moon.
Zebulun’s was an emerald and the color of his flag was white, with a ship
Dan's was jacinth and the color of his flag was similar to sapphire; embroidered
on it was a serpent.
Gad’s was an agate and the color of his flag was neither black nor white but
a blend of black and white; on it was embroidered a camp.
Naphtali's was all amethyst and the color of his Flag was like clarified wine
of a not very deep red; on it was embroidered a hind.
Asher's was a beryl anti the color of his Flag was like the precious stone with
which women adorn themselves embroidered thereon was an olive tree.
Joseph's was an onyx and the color of his flag was jet black; the embroidered
design thereon for both princes Ephraim and Manasseh was Egypt
because they were born there.
A bullock was embroidered on the flag of Ephraim.
A wild ox was embroidered on the flag of the tribe of Manasseh.
Benjamin’s stone was jasper and the color of his flag was a combination of
all the twelve colors; embroidered thereon was a wolf.