A look at 2 Different historical accounts about the Origin of the Igbo tribe?


igbo originSeveral historians of Igbo culture have written various accounts concerning where Igbos originated from. Anyone writing an historical account of Igbo people must have facts to back it up. However, no historian can claim the historical accounts of other historians are either truthful or falsehood, because no historical account is nobler than the other.

Here are two (2) historical accounts of Igbo origin:

  1.  Igbos are descendants of Jacob who later became known as Israel. Israel had 12 sons one of which was known as Gad. When famine caused Jacob and his sons to migrate to Egypt where there was an abundance of food at the time. They remained in Egypt for many years; before the Egyptians became envious and began to persecute the Israelites.Gad who became the patriarch of all Igbos had 7 sons – Eri was the 5th of them. Before the Egyptian persecution began, Eri in company of his family and associates left Egypt after catching an inkling of impending persecution in Egypt.Eri and his people then traversed several rivers and hills. They crossed river Nile and entered Southern Sudan, and moved onto Chad. From Chad, they crossed river Benue and came to Lokoja. From Lokoja, they sailed through river Niger and came ashore at Aguleri around 1305 BC. they settled close to the confluence point of Ezu and Omambala rivers. But Eri and his people did not stay there for long, because of the consistent flooding of the two rivers.At that confluence point of the two rivers, Eri built a shrine where he regularly offered prayers and spiritual rites to God, and to honour his own father – Gad. After Eri finished setting up his shrine, he had a dreamt, and in his dream, an entity changed his name from Eri to Igbo. From then onwards, Eri became known as Igbo. He loved the name  so much that he named his fourth son Igbo.The name Igbo started trending, and became popular across the Eastern side of river Niger. The word Igbo (derived from I puru gboo, which means You left early) had great significance to Eri and his people of the, because they left Egypt early enough before the great persecution began.Later on, Eri’s descendants started to migrate to other parts of the South-East in search of livelihood… the rest has become real history.
  2. Another story by some Igbo historians say that Igbos didn’t descend from Jewish people rather that they were originally inhabited West Africa.Just as Igbos believe that “if someone says food tastes good, he should also say what it tastes like.”  Scholars of the second school of thought believe that the second story is based on discoveries and excavation of great works of art made in various parts of Igboland such as Igbo-ukwu, Okigwe, and Nsukka to support their viewpoint. They are asking why do Igbos not share similar skin colour and hair texture like the Jews? Again, that if sunburn was responsible for darkening the complexion of Eri and his associates, does the same sunburn the cause of the dark skin of their offspring?


  1. There are so many loopholes about the first historical accounts. If indeed they originated from Gad one of the sons of Jacob, how is it that clothing was not part of the ibo culture. Let me remind you that we are IBOS not IGBOS. And we speak IGBO language. A lot of modern day IBOS are unaware of this including the writer of this piece. Gad and his sons were properly dressed and they had weaving and cloth making knowledge. So how is it that Gad gradually lost this knowledge and his son Eri ended up living in nudity. I have seen pictures of early Arab and EUROPEAN explorers who first arrived in the society. The sunburn you mentioned is biologically untenable. At least the offspring should be light or near light colour skin or fluffy or curly hairs. What about the language. It has no similarities. There are some elements of similarities in terms of Religion and cultures though but they could just be coincidence. Ibo has no knowledge of tent making or building. why

    • Ibo? What on earth are you smoking? There is no Igbo Village or clan that calls herself IBO. You must be a very fake Igbo man.

      • well. i am an original ibo man. The ibo of an ibo man. But that is not an issue. The main issue you did not even touch it. We are called IBOS. Our language is IGBO. That is why we were taught IGBO language in school and not IBO language. Please consult and know better. Thank you.

        • Which village or clan in Igbo land refer themselves as Ibo? – that was my question to you which you have refused to answer. Until then, bye.

          • There is no such thing as Ibo,heebo,or whatever.its only Igbo and nothing more. Pls join a group on facebook known as Radio Biafra London and learn your history or you can do research as well on Biafra/igbo

      • That’s a big fucking lie.We are Ndigboo meaning Ancient people or people of old.and we speak Igbo as a language but the wider name given to our land is Biafra.do your research well nwachineke.
        Udo dili gi

      • how did Obigad came about? ERI in umuleri, Aguleri Aro in Arondizuogu, Arochukwu? what about the male circumcision on 8th day? what about the brother of a dead man marrying his late brother’s wife? where did the Igbos get all those from and many more? Read your old testament Bible Genesis 46:16, Exodus 39:7 and verse 14. the ERI stone is in Aguleri in Anambra state.

        • Talking about the skin color Gad was born by Zilpah Leah’s slave to Jacob. is there no possibility that the slave was black? Now the Lemba of South Africa through their DNA has proven that some Israelites were black.


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