MALCHUS (CLEODEMUS THE PROPHET):
Hellenistic writer of the second century
Cleodemus was the author of a history of the Jews in Greek, in which Jewish traditions are blended with Greek mythology. A short notice of this history, which is no longer in existence, is quoted by Josephus ("Ant." i. 15) from Alexander Polyhistor. Cleodemus relates that among the sons of Abraham and Keturah were three, Apher, Surim, and Japhran (ᾈφέραν, ᾈσουρείμ, Ἰάφραν), from whom the town of Aphra, the land of Assyria, and Africa derived their names. He relates further that these three sons helped Hercules in his fight against Libya and Antæus, and that Hercules married the daughter of Aphra, by whom he had a son, Didorus, from whose son Sophon the Sophacians derived their name.
- Ewald, Gesch. vii. 91;
- Herzfeld, Gesch. des Volkes Israel, iii. 498, 575;
- Freudenthal, Alexander Polyhistor, p. 130 et passim;
- Schürer, Gesch. iii. 357 (Eng. transl. ii. iii. 209).