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The male head of a family or clan. In the OT the term conventionally and specifically refers to the key figures in the Genesis narrative, Abraham (Gen 12-24), Isaac (Gen 25-36), and Jacob (Gen 25-36), who are reckoned as the progenitors and pioneers of biblical faith.

  • Powell, Mark Allan, ed. HarperCollins Bible Dictionary. Abridged Edition. Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2009.