According to Jewish tradition, Jewish ancestry is traced back to the Biblical patriarchs Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, who lived in Canaan around the 18th century BCE. Historically, Jews had evolved mostly from the Tribe of Judah and Simeon, and partially from the Israelite tribes of Binyamin and Levi, who had all together formed the ancient Kingdom of Judah. A closely related group is the Samaritans, who claim descent from the Israelite tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh, while according to the Bible their origin is in the people brought to Israel by the Neo-Assyrian Empire and some Cohanim (Jewish priests) who taught them how to worship the "native God". The Jewish ethnicity, nationality and religion are strongly interrelated, as Judaism is the traditional faith of the Jewish nation.(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jews)
The Jewish congregation at Ballarat was the most important in country Victoria. It was founded during the 1850s, the Jewish community mainly consisting of traders and merchants.In 1861 there were 163 men and 78 women in Ballarat identifying themselves as Jewish. 
- Stone, Derek, The Jews in Australia, Australasian Educa Press, 1986, p.40.
- Rubenstein, Hilary, The Jews in Australia Vol. 1, William Heinemann Australia, 1991.