After 1492, various theories developed to explain the origins of the Native Americans. Some of these theories suggested that all or some of the Native Americans were descendants of the Ten Lost Tribes of Israel and other Hebrews who allegedly visited the Americas prior to 1492. Besides the Ten Lost Tribes, some of these theories concerned refugees from the fall of Jerusalem to the Babylonians or the defeat of Simon bar Kochba’s rebellion. These theories first appeared in the sixteenth century and they have persisted as fringe history to the present. They range from sixteenth-century Mexico to the jungles of seventeenth-century South America to the frontiers of eighteenth-century and early nineteenth-century United States.
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