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Nicarchus was the author of a book on the Jews in which he says that Moses was called Alpha because of the many leprous spots (alphous; cf. a similar canard in *Manetho) which he had on his body. (Alpha was an honorific title for senior members of the museum in Alexandria, and was regarded as synonymous with excellence.)

Source: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2007 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.