or Manichees. A religious sect founded by Mani or Manichæus, the Persian painter. It was an amalgamation of the Magian and Christian religions, interlarded with a little Buddhism. In order to enforce his religious system, Mani declared himself to be the Paraclete or Comforter promised by Jesus Christ.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894