The objective of this article is to present a research report on the census lists in Num 1 and 26 as well as to make a new proposal concerning the interpretation of the large numbers. Following Petrie and Mendenhall, the word Pl) is not understood as “a thousand” but as the name of a military unit. In addition, h)m is interpreted as a military unit, too. The plausibility of its existence is shown by
means of biblical and extra-biblical sources. In conclusion, there is no need to assume that a writer or redactor confused different meanings of Pl). The
population at the time of the Conquest is estimated as 120,000 people.