24 As in the case of Simon Psellus, Josephus presumably supplies the cognomen (here Ἠφαίου) to distinguish men of the same name—in this case, from the 3 others named Matthias in this brief passage. But the meaning of the name is unknown. The attempts of the later mss. to provide alternatives (R: ἠφιλίου; AM: ἠφλίου; W; ἡφλίου)—also problems—shows that ms. P’s reading, adopted here, caused them difficulties. If the label means “ son of Ephaeus,” it is puzzling since the father is already identified as Simon Psellus. The name seems to transliterate a Semitic root. There are precedents: three different persons in the Bible are known as הפיע: in Gen 25:4 (head of the most prominent Midianite tribe); 1 Chr 2:46 (a concubine of Caleb), and 1 Chr 2:47 (a son of Iahdai). Since the first of these also represents an area ( Midian), the name is possibly an archaic geographical label. An obscure ancestor of King Saul was named חיפא(1Sam. 9:1). In private correspondence, Louis H. Feldman suggests that the Hebrew root הפי (handsome, used ironically of someone not handsome) would suit the context, in which physical attributes are noted. Since the reference would be to Simon Psellus, this would solve the problem of apparent double paternity, though the omission of initial י in transliteration is hard to explain.