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According to the Bible (Exodus 1-2) Moses was fostered or adopted after his mother, Jochebed, placed him in a basket on the Nile (compare Maui and Romulus and Remus) to escape an edict by Pharaoh that all new-born Hebrew boy children were to be killed.

Rabbi Isidore Epstein, principal of Jews' College, London, writes that he "was the adopted son of an Egyptian princess, identified by some with Hatshepsut, the sister of Thotmes III [and] brought up in the royal court," but he turned back to his own people and led them to the Promised Land. It was Moses to whom God revealed the Ten Commandments.

He is often stated to have had a speech impediment, and his brother Aaron was his spokesman.


Dever, Maria, and Dever, Aileen. Relative Origins: Famous Foster and Adopted People. (Portland: National Book Company, 1992) Epstein, Isidore. Judaism. (Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1968) Microsoft Encarta 98 Encyclopedia, 1993-97 Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, edited by F.L. Cross. (London: Oxford University Press, 1957) Encyclopedia of Religion. 16 vols. (New York: Macmillan, 1987) The Complete Who's Who in the Bible, edited by Paul Gardner. (London: Marshall Pickering, 1995) Encyclopaedia Judaica, edited by Cecil Roth. (Jerusalem: Keter Publishing House, 1971) New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia, editor-in-chief Geoffrey Wigoder. 7th edition. (New York: Facts On File, 1992)