Reuben’s name means ‘Behold a son’ in Hebrew. He was the first born of Jacob and Leah and the founder of the Reubenite Tribe.
He was born around 1920 B.C. on the 14th day of Kislev, the ninth month on the Hebrew Calendar (Book of Jubilees 28:11). When he was born, Leah prayed to God that he would bring Jacob to love her (Genesis 29:32). She rendered this prayer because her father Laban had previously broken his agreement with Jacob. After working on his land for seven years, Jacob was to marry Rachel, but instead Laban wanted his eldest daughter married first and gave him Leah. In result, it brought a disconnection between Jacob and Leah’s relationship.
According to the Book of Jasher, Reuben’s wife was Elluram. With her, they bore four sons who eventually formed their own tribes within the Reubenite Tribe (Genesis 46:4-9). Hanock of the Hanochites, Pallu of the Palluites, Hezron of the Hezornites, and Carmi of the Carmites (Numbers 26:5-6). According to some Classical Rabbinical sources, Reuben died at the age of 125 and was placed in a coffin and taken back to Israel for burial.
(More shall come)