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We refer to Moshe as "Moshe Rabbeinu". (It's interesting about the avos as well that we say, for example, Avraham Avinu; however, I'll keep that for a separate question.)

When was the first time (and where is it written) that Moshe was referred to as "Moshe Rabbeinu"?

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Every time? This morning I know I referred to him as Moshe Avdecha at least once in my Mussaf for Rosh Chodesh. – Double AA Nov 15 '12 at 23:18
@DoubleAA see edit. – msh210 Nov 16 '12 at 0:03
@DoubleAA I see it's already been edited however rather when speaking about Moshe people usually (or all the time say "Rabbeinu" as well. – Yehoshua Nov 16 '12 at 6:20
@msh210 My reference to him as "Moshe" was to simply bring out the point more (and show the difference) – Yehoshua Nov 16 '12 at 6:27
up vote 5 down vote accepted

A quick search yields no results in the Mishna but one result in the Tosefta, namely Avoda Zara 3:19. However this is only true in the Erfurt manuscript (see the third to last line of the page numbered 0424 in the linked pdf (71 megabytes)), not the Vienna one, nor the original printed editions.

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...and a lot of times in Bavli too. I don't think anyone can point to really the first time. It seems to have just been standard practice back then. – Double AA Nov 15 '12 at 23:23
Do you think you could note, please, how many bytes that file is if that number is large, so unsuspecting people don't try downloading it on slow connections? (+1, incidentally.) – msh210 Nov 16 '12 at 0:07
@msh210 It's about 74,673,075 bytes. That said, it really does say what I say it says :) – Double AA Nov 16 '12 at 3:17
@DoubleAA - A lot of times in Bavli? Can you name at least one? And in regards to your answer we'll let R' Saul Liberman be the kava'ah on which girsa is right (thus helping to establish an earlier makor :) – Yehoshua Nov 16 '12 at 6:22
@Yehoshua See Brachot 3b 7a 12b 32b 33b 34a 55a 61a. Instead of writing the rest, do you have any specific Masechet for me to include? Also, I don't think there is Tosefta Kepshuta on Nezikin and on. – Double AA Nov 16 '12 at 7:08

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