A | B |
C | D |
E | F |
G | H |
I | J |
K | L |
O | P |
Q | R |
S | T |
U | V |
W | X |
Y | Z
The Hebrew letter is the
fourteenth letter in the English and Hebrew alphabets; its numerical value is
50, and its definition, fish. As a final, Nun is written 1, and then is of the
value of 700. The Hebrew Divine appellation is Formidabilis.
The daughter of Lamech and
sister of Tubal-cain (see Genesis iv, 18-24, and 99, which have been read as
meaning two different persons but now usually understood as of the same list).
To her the Legend of the Craft attributes the invention of the art of weaving,
and she is united with her three brothers, by the same legend, in the task of
inscribing the several sciences on two pillars, that the knowledge of them
might be preserved after the Flood.
See Schools of the Prophets
After the destruction of the
Solomonial Temple, the captives formed an association while slaves at Naharda,
on the Euphrates, and are there said to have preserved the secret mysteries.
In Scriptural symbology,
nakedness denoted sin, and dothing, protection. But the symbolism of
Freemasonry on this subject is different. There, to be "neither naked nor
clothed" is to make no claim through worldly wealth or honors to preferment in
Freemasonry, where nothing but internal merit, which is unaffected by the
outward appearance of the body, is a recommendation for admission.
NAME OF GOD
A reverential allusion to the
name of God, in some especial and peculiar form, is to be found in the
doctrines and ceremonies of almost all nations. This ineffable or unutterable
name was respected by the Jews under the sacred form of the word Jehovah.
Among the Druids, the three letters I. O. W. constituted the name of Deity.
They were never pronounced, says Giraldus Cambrensis, but another and less
sacred name was substituted for them. Each letter was a name in itself. The
first is the Word, at the utterance of which in the beginning the world burst
into existence; the second is the Word, whose sound still continues, and by
which all things remain in existence; the third is the Word, by the utterance
of which all things will be consummated in happiness, forever approaching to
the immediate presence of the Deity. The analogy between this and the past,
press ent and future significations contained in the Jewish Tetragrammaton
will be evident
Among the Mohammedans there is
a science called Ism Allah, or the science of the name of God. "They pretend,"
says Niebuhr, "that God is the loclc of this science, and Mohammed the key;
that, consequently, none but Mohammedans can attain it; that it discovers what
passes in different countries; that it familiarizes the possessors with the
genii, who are at the command of the initiated, and who instruct them; that it
places the winds and the seasons at their disposal, and heals the bites of
serpents, the lame, the maimed, and the blind."
In the chapter of the Koran en
titled Araaf, it is written: "God has many excellent names. Invoke him by
these names, and separate your selves from them who give him false names." The
Mohammedans believe that God has ninety-nine names, which, with that of Allah,
makes one hundred; and, therefore, their chaplets or rosaries are composed of
one hundred beads, at each of which they invoke one of these names; and there
is a tradition, that whoever frequently makes this invocation will find the
gates of Paradise open to him. With them Allah is the Ism al adhem, the Great
Name, and they bestow upon it all the miraculous virtues which the Jews give
to the Tetragrammaton.
This, they say, is the name
that was engraven on the stone which Japheth gave to his children to bring
down rain from heaven; and it was by virtue of this name that Noah made the
ark float on the waters, and governed it at will, without the aid of oars or
rudder. Among the Hindus there was the same veneration of the name of God, as
is evinced in their treatment of the mystical name Aum. The "Institutes of
Menu" continually refer to the peculiar efficacy of this word, of which it is
said, "All rites ordained in the Veda oblations to fire, and solemn sacrifices
pass away; but that which passes not away is the syllable Aum, thence called
aishara, since it is a symbol of God, the Lord of created beings."
There was in every ancient
nation a sacred name given to the highest god of its religious faith, besides
the epithets of the other and subordinate deities.
The old Aryans, the founders
of our race, called their chief god Dyaus, and in the Vedas we have the
invocation to Dyaus Pitar, which is the same as the Greek Zev cramp, and the
Latin, Jupiter, all meaning the Heaven-Father, and at once reminding us of the
Christian invocation to "Our Father which art in heaven."
There is one incident in the
Hindu mythology which shows how much the old Indian heart yearned after this
expression of the nature of Deity bv a name.
There was a nameless god, to
whom, as the "source of golden light," there was a worship. This is expressed
in one of the Veda hymns, where the invocation in every stanza closes with the
exclamation, "Who is the god to whom we shall offer our sacrifice?"
Nor, says Bunsen (God in
History i, 302), "the Brahmanic expositors must needs find in every hvmn the
name of a god who is invoked in it, and so, in this case. their have actually
invented a grammatical divinity the god Who." What more pregnant testimony
could we have of the tendency of man to seek a knowledge of the Divine nature
in the expression of a name?
The Assyrians worshiped Assur, or Asarac, as their chief god. On an obelisk,
taken from the palace of Nimrod, we find the inscription, "to Asarac, the
Great Lord, the King of all the great gods."
Of the veneration of the
Egyptians for the name of their supreme god, we have a striking evidence in
the writings of Herodotus, the Father of History, as he has been called, who,
during a visit to Egypt. was initiated into the Osirian mysteries. Speaking of
these initiations he says (book u, chapter 171), "the Egyptians represent by
night his sufferings, whose name I refrain from mentioning." It was no more
lawful among the Egyptians than it was among the Jews, to give utterance aloud
to that Holy Name.
At Byblos the Phenicians
worshiped Eliun, the Most High God. From him was descended El, whom Philo
identifies with Saturn, and to whom he traces the Hebrew Elohim. Of this El,
Max Muller says that there was undeniably a primitive religion of the whole
Semitic race, and that the Strong One in Heaven was invoked under this name by
the ancestors of the Semitic races, before there were Babylonians in
Babylonia, Phenicians in Sidon and Tyre, or Jews in Mesopotamia and Jerusalem.
If so, then the Mosaic adoption of Jehovah, with its more precise teaching of
the Divine essence, was a step in the progress to the knowledge of the Divine
Truth. In China there is an infinite variety of names of elemental powers, and
even of ancestral spirits, who b are worshiped as subordinate deities; but the
ineffable name is Tien, compounded of the two signs for great and one, and
which, the Imperial Dictionary tells us, signifies "The Great One—He that
dwells on high, and regulates all below."
Drummond (Origines) claimed
that Abaur was the name of the Supreme Deity among the ancient Chaldeans. It
is evidently the Hebrew signifies "The Father of Light." The Scandinavians had
twelve subordinate gods, but their chief or supreme deity was Al-Fathr, or the
Even among the Red Men of
America we find the idea of an invisible deity, whose name was to be
venerated. Garcilasso de la Vega tells us that while the Peruvians paid public
worship to the sun, it was but as a symbol of the Supreme Being, whom they
called, Pachacamac, a word meaning the soul of the world, and which was so
sacred that it was spoken only with extreme dread.
The Jews had, besides the
Tetragrammaton or fourlettered name, two others: one consisting of twelve and
the other of forty-two letters. But Maimonides, in his More Nevochim (part i,
elxii), remarks that it is impossible to suppose that either of these
constituted a single name, but that each must have been composed of several
words, which must, however, have heen significant in making man approximate to
a knowledge of the true essence of God. The Cabalistical book called the Sohar
confirms this when it tells us that there are ten names of God mentioned in
the Bible, and that when these ten names are combined into one word, the
number of the letters amounts to forty-two.
But the Talmudists, although
they did not throw around the forty-two-lettered name the sanctity of the
Tetragrammaton, prescribed that it should be communicated only to men of
middle age and of virtuous habits, and that its knowledge would confirm the n
as heirs of the future as well as the present life. The twelve-lettered name,
although once common, became afterward occult; and when, on the death of Simon
I, the priests ceased to use the Tetragrammaton, they were accustomed to bless
the people with the name of twelve letters. Maimonides very wisely rejects the
idea that any power was derived from these letters or their pronunciation, and
claims that the only virtue of the names consisted in the holy ideas expressed
by the words of which they were composed.
The following are the ten
Cabalistic names of God, corresponding to the ten Sephiroth:
7. Jehovah Sabaoth
8. Elohim Sabaoth
Lanzi extends his list of names to twenty-six, which, with their
signification, are as follows:
At. Aleph and Tau, that is,
Alpha and Omega. .A name figurative of the Tetragrammaton.
Ihoh. Eternal, absolute principle of creation.
Hoh. Destruction. the male and female principle, the author and regulator of
time and motion.
Jah. Lord and remunerator.
Oh. Severer and punisher.
Jao. Author of life.
Azazel. Author of death.
Jao-Sabaoth. God of the co-ordinations of loves and hatreds. Lord of the
solstices and the equinoxes.
Ehie. The Being, the Ens.
El. The First Cause. The principle or beginning of all things.
Elo-hi. The Good Principle.
Elo-ho. The Evil Principle.
El-raccum. The Succoring Principle.
El-cannum. The Abhoring Principle.
Ell. The Most Luminous.
II . The Omnipotent.
Ellohim. The Omnipotent and Beneficent.
Elohim. The Most Beneficent.
Elo. The Sovereign, the Excelsus.
Adon. The Lord, the Dominator.
Etoi. The Illuminator, the Most Effulgent.
Adonai. The Most Firm, the Strongest.
Elion. The Most Sigh.
Shaddai. The Most Victorious.
Yeshurun. The Most Generous.
Noil. The Most Sublime.
Like the Mohammedan Ism Allah,
Freemasonry presents us as its most important feature with this science of the
names of God. But here it elevates itself above Talmudical and Rabbinical
reveries, and becomes a symbol of Divine Truth. The names of God were
undoubtedly intended originally to be a means of communicating the knowledge
of God himself. The name was, from its construction and its literal powers,
used to give some idea, however scanty, in early times, of the true nature and
essence of the Deity. The Ineffable Name was the symbol of the unutterable
sublimity and perfection of truth which emanate from the Supreme God, while
the subordinate names were symbols of the subordinate manifestations of truth.
Freemasonry has availed itself of this system, and, in its reverence for the
Divine Name, indicates its desire to attain to that truth as the ultimate
object of all its labor. The significant words of the Masonic system, which
describe the names of God wherever they are found, are not intended merely as
words of recognition, but as indices, pointing—like the Symbolic Ladder of
Jacob of the First Degree, or the Winding Stairs of the Second, or the Three
Gates of the Third—the way of progress from darkness to light, from ignorance
to knowledge, from the lowest to the highest conceptions of Divine Truth. And
this is, after all, the real object of all Masonic science.
NAMES OF LODGES
The precedency of Lodges does
not depend on their names, but on their numbers The rule declaring that "the
precedency of Lodges is grounded on the seniority of their Constitution" was
adopted on the 27th of December, 1727 (Constitutions, 1738, page 154). The
number of the Lodge, therefore, by which its precedency is established, is
always to be given by the Grand Lodge. In England, Lodges do not appear to
have received distinctive names before the latter part of the eighteenth
century. Up to that period the Lodges were distinguished simply by their
numbers. Thus, in the first edition of the Book of Constitutions, published in
1723, we find a list of twenty Lodges, registered by their numbers, from No. 1
to No. 20, inclusive. Subsequently, they were further designated by the name
of the tavern at which they held their meetings. Thus, in the second edition
of the same work, published in 1738, we meet with a list of one hundred and
six Lodges, designated sometimes, singularly enough, as Lodge No. 6, at the
Rummer Tavern, in Queen Street; No. 84, at the Black Dog, in Castle Street; or
No. 98. at the Bacchus Tavern, in Little Bush Lane. With such names and
localities, we are not to wonder that the "three small glasses of punch," of
which Doctor Oliver so feelingly speaks in his Book of the Lodge, were duly
appreciated; nor, as he admits, that "there were some Brethren who displayed
an anxiety to have the allowance increased." In 1766 we read of four Lodges
that were erased from the Register, under the similar designations of the
Globe, Fleet Street; the Red Cross Inn, Southwark; No. 85, at the George,
Ironmongers' Lane and the Mercers Arms, Mercers Street. To only one of these,
it will be perceived, was a number annexed. The name and locality of the
tavern was presumed to be a sufficient distinction. It was not until about the
close of the eighteenth century, as has been already observed, that we find
distinctive names beginning to be given to the Lodges; for in 1793 we hear of
the Shakespear Lodge, at Stratford-on-Avon; the Royal Brunswick, at Sheffield;
and the Lodge of Apollo, at Alcester. From that time it became a usage among
our English Brethren, from which they have never since departed.
But a better taste began to
prevail at a much earlier period in Scotland, as well as in Continental and
Colonial Lodges. In Scotland, especially, distinctive names appear to have
been used from a very early period, for in the very old Charter granting the
office of Hereditary Grand disasters to the Barons of Rosslyn of which the
date cannot be more recent than 1600, we find among the signatures the names
of the officers of the Lodge of Dunfermline and the Lodge of Saint Andrew's.
Among the names in the list of the Scotch Lodges, in 1736 are those of Saint
Mary's Chapel, Kilwinning, Aberdeen, etc. These names were undoubtedly
borrowed from localities; but in 1763, while the English Lodges were still
content with their numerical arrangement only we find in Edinburgh such
designations as Saint Luke's, Saint Giles's, and Saint David's Lodges.
The Lodges on the Continent,
it is true, at first adopted the English method of borrowing a tavern sign for
their appellation; whence we find the Lodge at the Golden Lion, in Holland, in
1734, and before that the Lodge at Nure's Tavern, in Paris, in 1725. But they
soon abandoned this inefficient and inelegant mode of nomenclature; and
accordingly, in 1739, a Lodge was organized in Switzerland under the
appropriate name of Stranger's Perfect Union. Tasteful names, more or less
significant, began thenceforth to be adopted by the Continental Lodges. Among
them we may meet with the Lodge of the Three Globes, at Berlin, in 1740; the
Minava Lodge, at Leipsic, in 1741; Absalom Lodge, at Hamburg, in 1742; Saint
George's Lodge, at the same place, in 1743; the Lodge of the Crowned Column,
at Brunswick, in 1745; and an abundance of others, all with distinctive names,
selected sometimes with much and sometimes with but little taste. But the
worst of them was undoubtedly better than the Lodge at the Goose and Gridiron,
which met in London in 1717.
In the Colonies of America,
from the very first introduction of Freemasonry into the western world,
significant names were selected for the Lodges; and hence we have, in 1734,
Saint John's Lodge, at Boston; a Solomon's Lodge, in 1735, at both Charleston
and Savannah; and a Union Kilwinning, in 1754, at the former place.
This brief historical
digression will serve as an examination of the rules which should govern all
founders in the choice of Lodge names. The first and most important rule is
that the name of a Lodge should be technically significant; that is, it must
allude to some Masonic fact or characteristic; in other words, there must be
something Masonic about it. Under this rule, all names derived from obscure or
un-masonic localities should be reflected as unmeaning and inappropriate.
Doctor Oliver, it is true, thinks otherwise, and says that "the name of a
hundred, or wahpentake, in which the Lodge is situated, or of a navigable
river, which confers wealth and dignity on the town, are proper titles for a
Lodge." But a name should always convey an idea, and there can be conceived no
idea worth treasuring in a Freemason's mind to be deduced from bestowing such
names as New York, Philadelphia, or Baltimore, on a Lodge. The selection of
such a name shows but little originality in the chooser; and, besides, if
there be two Lodges in a town, each is equally entitled to the appellation;
and if there be but one, the appropriation of it would seem to indicate an
intention to have no competition in the future.
Yet, barren of Masonic meaning
as are such geographical names, the adoption of them is one of the most common
faults in American Masonic nomenclature. The examination of a very few old
Registers, taken at random, will readily evince this fact. Thus, eighty-eight,
out of one hundred and sixty Lodges in Wisconsin, were named after towns or
counties; of four hundred and thirty-seven Lodges in Indiana, two hundred and
fifty-one have names derived from the same source; geographical names were
found in one hundred and eighty-one out of four hundred and three Lodges in
Ohio, and in twenty out of thirty-eight in Oregon. But, to compensate for
this, we had seventy-one Lodges in View Hampshire, and only two local
geographical appellations in the list. There are, however, some geographical
names which are admissible, and, indeed, are highly appropriate These are the
names of places celebrated as Masonic history. Such titles for Lodges as
Jerusalem, Tyre, Lebanon and Joppa are unexceptionable. Patmos. which is the
name of a Lodge in Maryland, seems. as the long residence of one of the
Patrons of the Order. to be unobjectionable.
So, too, Bethel, because it
signifies the House of God; Mount Moriah, the site of the ancient Temple;
Calvary, the small hill on which the sprig of acacia was found; Mount Ararat,
where the ark of our father Noah rested; Ophir, whence Solomon brought the
gold and precious stones with which he adorned the Temple; Tadmor, because it
was a city built by King Solomon; and Salem and Jebus, because they are
synonyms of Jerusalem, and because the latter is especially concerned with
Ornan the Jebusite, on whose threshing-floor the Temple was subsequently
built—are all excellent and appropriate names for Lodges. But all Scriptural
names are not equally admissible- Cabul, for instance, must be rejected,
because it was the subject of contention between Solomon and Hiram of Tyre;
and Babylon, because it was the place where "language was confounded and
Freemasonry lost," and the scene of the subsequent captivity of our ancient
Brethren; Jericho, because it was under a curse; and Misgab and Tophet,
because they were places of idol worship. In short, it may be adopted as a
rule, that no name should be adopted whose antecedents are in opposition to
the principles of Freemasonry.
The ancient patrons and
worthies of Freemasonry furnish a very fertile source of Masonic nomenclature,
and have been very liberally used in the selection of names of Lodges. Among
the most important may be mentioned Saint John, Salomon, Hiram, King David,
Adoniram, Enoch, Archimedes, and Pythagoras. The Widow's Son Lodge, of which
there are several instances in the United States, is an affecting and
significant title, which can hardly be too often used. Recourse is also to be
had to the names of moderate distinguished men who have honored the
Institution by their adherence to it, or who, by their learning in
Freemasonry, and by their services to the Order, have merited some marks of
approbation. And hence we meet, in England, as the names of Lodges, with
Susser, Moira, Frederick, Zetland, and Robert Burns; and in the United States
with Washington, Lafayette, Clinton, Franklin, and Clay. Care must, however,
be taken that no name be selected except of one who was both a Freemason and
had distinguished himself, either by services to his country, to the world, or
to the Order. Brother Oliver says that "the most appropriate titles are those
which are assumed from the name of some ancient benefactor or meritorious
individual who was a native of the place where the Lodge is held; as, in a
city, the builder of the cathedral church."
In the United States we are,
it is true, precluded from a selection from such a source; but there are to be
found some of those old benefactors of Freemasonry, who, like Shakespeare and
Milton, or Homer and Virgil, have ceased to belong to any particular country
and have now become the common property of the world-wide Craft. There are,
for instance Carausius, the first Royal Patron of Freemasonry in England; and
Saint Alban, the first Grand Master; and Athelstan and Prince Edwin, both
active encouragers of the art in the same kingdom. There are Wykeham, Gundulph,
Giffard, Langham, Yevele (called, in the old records the King's Freemason),
and Chicheley, Jermyn, and Wren, all long celebrated as illustrious Grand
Masters of England, each of whom would be well entitled to the honor of giving
name to a Lodge, and any one of whom would be better, more euphonious, and
more spirit-stirring than the unmeaning, and oftentimes crabbed, name of some
obscure village or post-office, from which too many of our Lodges derive their
And, then, again, among the
great benefactors to Masonic literature and laborers in Masonic science there
are such names as Anderson, Dunckerley, Preston, Hutchinson, Town, Webb, and a
host of others, who, though dead, still live by their writings in our
memories. The virtues and tenets—the inculcation and practice of which
constitute an important part of the Masonic system—form very excellent and
appropriate names for Lodges, and have always been popular among correct
Masonic nomenclatures. Thus we everywhere find such names as Charity, Concord,
Equality, Faith, Fellowship, Harmony, Hope, Humility, Mystic Tie, Relief,
Truth, Union, and Virtue. Frequently, by a transposition of the word Lodge and
the distinctive appellation, with the interposition of the preposition of, a
more sonorous and emphatic name is given by our English and European Brethren,
although the custom is but rarely followed in the United States. Thus we have
by this method the Lodge of Regularity, the Lodge of Fidelity, the Lodge of
Industry, and the Lodge of Prudent Brethren, in England; and in France, the
Lodge of Benevolent Friends, the Lodge of Perfect Union, the Lodge of the
Friends of Peace, and the celebrated Lodge of the Nine Sisters.
As the names of illustrious
men will sometimes stimulate the members of the Lodges which bear them to an
emulation of their characters, so the names of the Masonic virtues may serve
to incite the Brethren to their practice, lest the inconsistency of their
names and their conduct should excite the ridicule of the world.
Another fertile and
appropriate source of names for Lodges is to be found in the symbols and
implements of the Order. Hence, we frequently meet with such titles as Level,
Trowel, Rising Star, Rising Sun, Olive Branch, Evergreen, Doric, Corinthian,
Delta, and Corner-Stone Lodges. Acacia is one of the most common, and at the
same time one of the most beautiful, of these symbolic names; but
unfortunately, through gross ignorance, it is often corrupted into Cassia—an
insignificant plant, which has no Masonic or symbolic meaning.
An important rule in the
nomenclature of Lodges, and one which must at once recommend itself to every
person of taste, is that the name should be euphonious, agreeable sounding.
This principle of euphony has been too little attended to in the selection of
even geographical names in the United States, where names with impracticable
sounds, or with ludicrous associations, are often affixed to our towns and
rivers. Speaking of a certain island, with the unpronounceable name of Srh,
Lieber says, "If Homer himself were born on such an island, it could not
become immortal,-for the best-disposed scholar would be unable to remember the
name"; and he thinks that it was no trifling obstacle to the fame of many
Polish heroes in the Revolution of that country, that they had names which
left upon the mind of foreigners no effect but that of utter confusion. An
error like this must be avoided in bestowing a name upon a Lodge. The word
selected should be soft, vocal—not too long nor too short—and, above all, be
accompanied in its sound or meaning by no low, indecorous, or ludicrous
association. For this reason such names of Lodges should be rejected as
Sheboygan and Oconomowoc from the Registry of Wisconsin, because of the
uncouthness of the sound; and Rough and Ready and Indian Diggings from that of
California, on account of the ludicrous associations which these names convey.
Again, Pythagoras Lodge is preferable to Pythagorean, and Archimedes is better
than Archimedean, because the noun is more euphonious and more easily
pronounced than the adjective. But this rule is difficult to illustrate or
enforce; for, after all, this thing of euphony is a mere matter of taste, and
we all know the adage, "De gustibus non est disputandum," there is no
disputing about tastes.
A few negative rules, which
are, however, easily deduced from the affirmative ones already given, will
complete the topic. No name of a Lodge should be adopted which is not, in some
reputable way, connected with Freemasonry Everybody will acknowledge that
Morgan Lodge would be an anomaly, and that Cowan Lodge, would, if possible, be
worse. But there are some names which, although not quite as bad as these, are
on principle equally as objectionable. Why should any of our Lodges, for
instance, assume, as many of them have, the names of Madison, Jefferson, or
Taylor, since none of these distinguished men were Freemasons or Patrons of
the Craft. The indiscriminate use of the names of saints unconnected with
Freemasonry is for a similar reason objectionable. Beside our Patrons, Saint
John the Baptist and Saint John the Evangelist, but three other saints can lay
any claims to Masonic honors, and these are Saint Alban, who introduced, or is
said to have introduced, the Order into England, and has been liberally
complimented in the nomenclature of Lodges; and Saint Swithin, who was at the
head of the Craft in the reign of Ethelwolf; and Saint Benedict, who was the
founder of the Masonic Fraternity of Bridge Builders. But Saint Mark, Saint
Luke, Saint Andrew all of whom have given names to numerous Lodges, can have
no pretensions to assist as sponsors in these Masonic baptisms, since they
were not at all connected with the Craft.
To the Indian names of Lodges
there is a radical objection. It is true that their names are often very
euphonious and always significant, for the Red Men of the American Continent
are tasteful and ingenious in their selection of names—much more so, indeed,
than the whites, who borrow from them; but their significance has nothing to
do with Freemasonry.
What has been said of Lodges
may with equal propriety be said, mutatis mutandis, the necessary changes
having been made, of Chapters, Councils, and Commanderies.
We may supplement what Doctor
Mackey says here with a few allusions to peculiar names of Lodges Gaelic Lodge
of Glasgow, Scotland, has the peculiarity that once a year the Brethren confer
a Degree in that quaint old Celtic language of the Scotch. America Lodge of
London, England comprises exclusively only those who were born in the United
States. There is a Lodge of lawyers at Belfast. Ireland which bears the
significant name of the Lodge of Good Counsel. A Lodge at London comprises a
membership keenly interested in the improvement of the condition of the blind,
and the name of their Lodge, Lux in Tenebris, or Light Among Shadows has a
meaning that touches the heart.
Titles of many foreign Lodges
have a peculiar significance as they exhibit a tendency to group Brethren of
certain professions and pursuits. The London Hospital Lodge, the Middlesex
Hospital Lodge and the City of London Red Cross Lodge are particularly
significant names and several of the leading clubs, permanent schools,
societies of musicians, of architects, of chartered accountants, the London
School Board as well as engineers and various other professional organizations
have Lodges bearing the names of these institutions. The Telephone Lodge has
an expressive title, and one might suspect that the Sanitarian and Hygeia
Lodges have to do with public health, and that is correct. Aquarius Lodge
recruits its members from Brethren connected with the London Water Works,
Aguartus being indeed the "water bearer." The Brethren of Evening Star Lodge
are concerned with the lighting of London. We Visited a Lodge at London whose
members were all lawyers and all engineers; they were certified members of the
Institution of Patent Agents and the name of their Lodge was Invention. Hortus
Lodge comprises Brethren who are merchants or growers of flowers, hortus being
the Latin word for garden.
A city of Belgium, where the
Primitive Scottish Rite was first established; hence sometimes called the Rite
The ark of the Egyptian gods.
A chest or structure with more height than depth, and thereby unlike the
Israelites Ark of the Covenant. The winged figures embraced the lower part of
the Naos, while the cherubim of the Ark of Yahveh were placed above its lid.
Yahveh took up His abode above the propitiatory or covering between the wings
of the cherubim, exteriorly, while the gods of Egypt were reputed as hidden in
the interior of the Naos of the sacred barks, behind hermetically closed doors
The territory of the tribe of
Naphtali adjoined, on its western border, to Phenicia, and there must,
therefore, have been frequent and easy communication between the Phenicians
and the Naphtalites, resulting sometimes in intermarriage. This will explain
the fact that Hiram the Builder was the son of a widow of Naphtali and a man
Freemasonry must have been
practiced in Naples before 1751, for in that year Ring Charles issued an Edict
forbidding it in his dominions. The author of Anti-Saint Nicaise says that
there was a Grand Lodge at Naples, in 1756, which was in correspondence with
the Lodges of Germany. But its meetings were suspended by a royal Edict in
September, 1775. In 1777 this Edict was repealed at the instigation of the
Queen, and Freemasonry was again tolerated. This toleration lasted, however,
only for a brief period. In 1781 Ferdinand IV renewed the Edict of
Suppression, and from that time until the end of the century Freemasonry was
subjected in Italy to the combined persecutions of the Church and State, and
the Freemasons of Naples met only in secret. In 1793, after the French
Revolution, many Lodges were openly organized.
A Supreme Council of the
Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite was established on the 11th of June 1809 of
which King Joachim elected Grand Master, and the Grand Orient of Naples on the
24th of the same month. The fact that the Grand Orient worked according to the
French Rite, and the Supreme Council according to the Scottish, caused
dissensions between the two Bodies, which, however, were finally healed. And
on the 23d of May, 1811, a Concordat was established between the Supreme
Council and the Grand Orient, by which the latter took the supervision of the
Degrees up to the Eighteenth, and the former of those from the Eighteenth to
the Thirty-third. In October, 1812, Wing Joachim accepted the presidency of
the Supreme Council as its Grand Commander. Both Bodies became extinct in
1815, on the accession of the Bourbons.
It has been claimed, and with
much just reason, as shown in his course of life, that Napoleon the Great was
a member of the Brotherhood. Brother J. E. S. Tuckett, Transactions of Quatuor
Coronati Lodge (volume xxvii, pages 96 to 141, 1914), arrives at the following
conclusions: The evidence in favor of a Masonic initiation previous to
Napoleon's assumption of the imperial title is overwhelming:
The initiation took place in
the body of an Army Philadelphe Lodge of the—Ecossais—Primitive Rite of
Narbonne, the third initiation of the " Note Communique" being an advancement
in that Rite; These initiations took place between 1795 and 1798.
Brother David E. W. Williamson
sends us a reference of value here: In his Notes pour servir a Histoire de la
Franc-Maçonnerie a Nancy jusqu'en 1805, M. Charles Bernardin, P. M. of the
Lodge at Nancy, writing about 1910, says "3e Décembre (1797) on place la
visite du general Bonaparte a la loge de Nancy." If this visit by hirn as a
Freemason is a fact we can limit to a narrow range the probable time when
Bonaparte was initiated and thus support the claim of Brother Tuckett.
Brother Tuckett's evidence is
summed up thus: In 1801, that is, fully two years before Napoleon became
Emperor, a prominent Ecossais, Brother Abraham, writes of the Masonic order
"as proud now to number the immemorial Brothers Bonaparte and Moreau among its
members." The Official report of a Masonic Festival at Dijon in November of
the same year described Masonic honors paid to Napoleon and refers to " Les
DD.. et RR.. FF.. Buonaparte et Moreau." Another official report of a similar
Festival at Montauban eleven days later describes Masonic honors paid to
Napoleon and Moreau, and in the Toast List their names occur with essentially
Masonic embellishments. Moreau became head of the Army Philadelphes in 1801.
The Strassburg Lodge is said to have toasted Napoleon as a Freemason. The
wording of the toast shows that this was before Napoleon became Emperor. At
the same period a Philadelphe Lodge, probably of the Army Branch, did exist at
Strassburg. In 1805, or early 1806, an eminent Brother Pyron, then, or a few
months later, a Philadelphe, writing to another eminent Brother Eques, chief
of the Philadelphes, claims Napoleon as brother of our Rite." Rite referred to
possibly Philadelphe, certainly an Ecossais Rite.
In March, 1807, at Milan, in a
Lodge named in honor of the Empress, the mother of the Viceroy, Grand Master
at Milan, Napoleon is toasted as "Brother, Emperor and King, Protector." In
1816 appears a book of Confesses de Napoleon with an engraving representing
the reception of Bonaparte by the llluminsti. In 1820, and again in 1827, an
unknown writer says, "It is certain that Napoleon underwent three
initiations." The first, 1795, the reception by the Francs- Juges-query,
Illuminati ? The second, from description evidently an Ecossais initiation, is
placed between March, 1796, and June, 1798. The third, a Philadelphe, more
probably of the Army Branch initiation at Cairo. In the same volume Napoleon
is made to say that he had been initiated into a "Secte des Egyptien.s." In
1829 the Abeille Masonnique, and in 1830 Clavel, state that Napoleon visited
Lodges in Paris incognito, unknown. From 1829 onwards a number of writers
repeat that Napoleon was initiated at Malta in 1798. In 1859 a correspondent
of the Freemasons Magazine claims to have known a French Brother who professed
to have met Napoleon as a Freemason in open Lodge.
Frost in his Secret Societies
of the European Resolutions London, 1876 (volume i, page 146), quoted Nodier's
authority for the statement that "the Emblem " of the Army Philadelphes was
identical with that adopted for the Legion of Honor. The Insignia chosen for
the Legion consisted of a white enameled five-rayed star bearing the portrait
of Napoleon and a wreath of oak and laurel. Legend—Napoleon Empereur des
Français. On the reverse—The Frence Eagle grasping 3 thunderbolt. egend—Honneur
et Patrie. The Ribbon was of scarlet watered silk. Presumably Frost and Nodier
allude to the five-rayed star, derived from the Pentalpha an emblem found in
all Masonic and related systems. The Emperor's brothers, the Imperial Princes
Joseph, Lucian, Louis and Jerome, were all Freemasons as was also his step-son
Eugene Beauharnais—at first regarded as the Imperia; Heir-Apparent, his
brother-in-law Murat, and his nephew Jerome. Joseph, 1768-1844. King of
Naples, 1806-8. King of Spain, 1808-13. Nominated by the Emperor himself as
Grand Master of the Grand Orient of France, 1804. Louis, 1778 to 1846. King of
Holland, 1806-10. Grand Master Adjoined of the Grand Orient of France, 1804.
Jerome, 1784 to 1860. King of Westphalia, 1807-13. Grand Master of the Grand
Orient of Westphalia. His son Jerome was also a Freemason. Lucien, 1775 to
A member of the Grand Orient
of France. Eugene Beauharnais, 1781 to 1S24. Viceroy of Italy 1805-14. Grand
Master of Italy and Grand Master of the Grand Orient of the Division Militaire
at Milan, 1805. Joachim Murat,1771 to 1815. King of Naples,1808. Senior Grand
Warden of the Grand Orient of France, 1803. Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of
Naples 1808. Grand Master of the Order of Saint Joachim 1806. The Empress
Josephine is known to have been friendly to Freemasonry. She was initiated
into the Maconnerie d'Adoption in the Lodge Les Francs Chevaliers in 1804 at
Paris, together with several of the ladies of her court, and became an active
member as well as patroness of that Rite. Those who were chosen by Napoleon
for high honor and office in the State were nearly all of them members of the
Craft and higher Degrees. Of the sis who, with the Emperor himself formed the
Grand Council of the Empire, five were certainly Freemasons, at their head
being the Arch-Chancellor, Prince Jean Jacques Regis Cambaceres, the Emperor's
right-hand man, and in his time the most active, enthusiastic and
indefatigable Freemason in France.
The sixth, the Arch-Treasurer
Le Brun, formerly Third Consul, is also believed to have been of the Craft,
but it is not certain. Of the nine lesser Imperial officers of State, six at
least were active Masons. Of Marshals of France who served under Napoleon, at
least twenty-two out of the first thirty were Freemasons, many of them Grand
Officers of the Grand Orient. The union of all the separate and often mutually
hostile Rites in one governing body was from the first the project of
Napoleon. Mereadier relates that during the Consulate Napoleon threatened to
abolish Freemasonry altogether unless this was accomplished. Late in 1804, at
the request of Cambaceres he interested himself in the reorganization of the
Grand Orient with the result that in 1805 the Grand Orient assumed control
over the whole body of Freemasonry in the Empire, with the Emperor's brother,
Joseph, as Grand Master, with Cambaceres and Murat as his Grand Master
Adjoints. Through Cambaceres the Emperor assured the Brothers of his imperial
protection, stating that he had instituted inquiry into the subject of
Freemasonry, and that he perceived that their highly moral aim and purpose
were worthy of his favor.
Louis Napoleon III was a
member of the Supreme, of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of France.
An Order under this name,
called also the French Order of Noachites, was established at Paris, in 1816,
by some of the adherents of the Emperor Napoleon. It was divided into three
Degrees: 1. Knight
3. Grand Elect
The last Degree was subdivided into three points
i. Secret Judge
ii. Perfect Initiate
iii. Knight of the Crown of Oak
The mystical ladder in this
Rite consisted of eight steps or stages, whose names were Adam, Eve, Noah,
Lamech, Naamah, Peleg, Oubal, and Orient. The initials of these words,
properly transposed, compose the word Napoleon, and this is enough to show the
character of the system. General Bertrand was elected Grand Master, but, as he
was then in the Island of Saint Helena, the Order was directed by a Supreme
Commander and two Lieutenants. It was Masonic in form only, and lasted but for
a few years.
NARBONNE, RITE OF
See Primitive Rite
NATIONAL GRAND LODGE
The Royal Mother Lodge of the
Three Globes, which had been established at Berlin in 1740, and recognized as
a Grand Lodge by Frederick the Great in 1744, renounced the Rite of Strict
Observance in 1771, and, declaring itself free and independent, assumed the
title of the Grand National Mother Lodge of the Three Globes, by which
appellation it is still known. The Grand Orient of France, among its first
acts, established, as an integral part of itself, a National Grand Lodge of
France, which was to take the place of the old Grand Lodge, which, it
declared, had ceased to exist. But the year after, in 1773, the National Grand
Lodge was suppressed by the power which had given it birth; and no such power
was recognized in French Freemasonry (see Grand Lodge and General Grand
NATIONAL GRAND LODGE
See General Grand Lodge
NATIONAL LEAGUED OF MASONIC
See Masonic Clubs, National Imbue of
NATIONAL MASONIC RESEARCH
Organized in Iowa, 1914, the
Society commenced the publication of the Builder, January, 1915, with Reverend
Joseph Fort Newton as Editor-in-Chief. A managing Board of Stewards, all of
the Grand Lodge of Iowa, were George E. Frazier, President; Newton R. Parvin,
Vice-President; George L. Sehoonover, Secretary, with Louis Block, C. C. Hunt,
John W. Barry. Ernest A. Reed of New Jersey became President in 1922, with R.
I. Clegg, Ohio, VicePresident; C. C. Hunt, Iowa, Secretary, and F. H.
Littlefield, Missouri, Executive Secretary and Treasurer. Later, Brothers R.
I. Clegg, H. L. Haywood, Robert Tipton, Dudley Wright, Louis Block, A. B.
Skinner, J. H. Tatsch, became associate editors, Brother Haywood becomung
editor in 1921, and R. J. Meekren in 1926.
In 1913 Bro. George L.
Schoonover of Anamosa, Ia., who was to become Grand Master, Grand Lodge of
Iowa, some five years later, became deeply impressed by the fact that among
the three million Masons in America were a rapidly-increasing number of
Masonic students; and that newly-made Masons, imbued with the spirit of the
time, were more and more demanding to know "what it is all about." He was
familiar with the world-wide influence of the Iowa Grand Lodge Library, and
with the work of Research Lodges in England, but believed that the American
Craft needed a facility of a different kind, not localized but national, and
one not an official arm of any Grand Lodge yet one that could be approved by
each Grand Lodge and could cooperate with them. He worked out a plan for a
national society, to be devoted to Masonic studies and to be a way-shower in
Masonic education, and to be composed not of Lodges or of Grand Lodges but of
individual Masons who would join it voluntarily, each paying a small annual
sum for dues; he also believed that such a society would require a monthly
journal; not a Masonic newspaper but a competently edited, well-printed,
illustrated magazine, carrying no advertisements, which could compare
favorably with the best non-Masonic journals. He believed also that while the
society ought to stand on its own feet and pay its own way it should be
examined, approved, and officiallY endorsed by a Grand Lodge beforehand.
In 1914 he laid his plan
before the Grand Lodge of Iowa, and received whole-hearted endorsement. Though
not a man of great wealth Bro.Schoonover was a man of means, and at his own
expense he erected a three-story, beautifully designed headquarters building
in his home town of Anamosa, Ia., some twenty-three miles outside of Cedar
Rapids. The newly-formed organization chose the name "National Masonic
Research Society"; secured Joseph Fort Newton as Editor-in-Chief; employed
Wildey E. Atchison of Colorado to be Assistant Secretary in charge of staff
and on January lst, 1915, issued the first number of The Builder, its official
monthly journal, sent to members only.
Each member paid an annual
membership fee ($2.50 at first, and then $3.00); for this he received The
Builder, special brochures and booklets as they were published, could have
answers to any question, could secure expert advice on Lodge educational
methods, assistance in private Masonic researches, etc. The membership
increased slowly, but in due time passed 20,000, among which were hundreds in
foreign countries—at one time more than 40 countries, with 200 to 300 in
England alone. The only new activity added after the Society's formation was a
department for the sale of Masonic books as a convenience to its members, and
not for profit. Bro. F. H. Littlefield became Executive Secretary in 1921 and
removed headquarters to St. Louis, Mo.
When in 1916 Bro. J. F. Newton
was called to London to become pastor of the City Temple his place was filled
for a time by a group of associates, among the latter being Bro. H. L.
Haywood, who wrote three books for the Society. He served as Editor without
pay for about two years, and then in 1921 became Editor-in-Chief; Bro. Jacob
Hugo Tatch was his Assistant Editor for about one year then transferred to the
Masonic Service Association (it had no connection with the N. M. R. S.); he
was succeeded by Bro. R. J. Meekren, who in turn became Editorin-Chief in
1925, after Bro. Haywood had left for New York to become architect and
director of the Board of General Activities of the Grand Lodge of New York,
including editorship of The New York Masonic Outlook.
Midway in the year 1931 the
Society was so depleted in membership by the depression when some thirteen
million men were out of employment that it was forced to discontinue. During
the sixteen years the Society had published The Builder in the form of a bound
volume with index each year. In a certain sense that set of books continues
the work of the society, because it is in almost every Masonic library in
America, in many public libraries, and in thousands of homes. It is a work of
great reference value, because in it are carefully wrought, factual articles
on the history, symbolism ritual, and jurisprudence of the Fraternity, the
larger number (unlike Ars Quatuor Corona natoram, a reference work for another
purpose) being on Freemasonry in America.
NATIONAL MASONIC TUBERCULOSIS
The National Tuberculosis
Association estimates that some fifty thousand living cases exist at all times
among Freemasons in the United States and that five thousand of the Brethren
die from tuberculosis every year. A Tuberculosis Sanatoria Commission was
appointed by the Grand Lodges of Texas, Arizona, and New Mexico.
An investigation was made by
this Commission in 1922 of the situation in the Southwestern United States
where thousands of consumptives resort. Many of these are Freemasons.
Information collected by the Commission indicated distressing conditions and
an urgent need for larger fraternal co-operative service. During the
fortyffeventh Annual Communication on February 18, 1925, Grand Lodge of New
Mexico, a Committee was empowered and subsequently, at Las Cruces in that
State, the Committee met and provided for the incorporation of a National
Masonic Tuberculosis Sanatoria Association with an office at Albuquerque, New
Mexico, under the supervision of Brother Alpheus A. Keen Grand Secretary. The
purpose of the institution is to act as trustee or agency for receiving and
administering funds for the relief of Freemasons and members of their familes
or others suffering from tuberculosis or in distress from other causes; to
provide hospitalization for sick and employment for the well; to establish
institutions for the care of those suffering from tuberculosis and other
diseases; and to acquire and conduct property in lands and buildings for such
training schools, hotels, and so forth, as required for the objects named, and
to circulate scientific and useful information for the prevention, relief and
cure of tuberculosis, etc.
The Association is to do
whatever may be deemed essential to accomplish these objects, to encourage and
promote works of humanity and charity, to relieve poverty sickness, distress,
suffering, to prevent danger, and to educate, to conquer tuberculosis. The
management is under a Board of Governors, one member from each United States
Grand Lodge Jurisdiction, the General Grand Chapter, General Grand Council,
Grand Encampment, the two Supreme Councils, the Shrine, and the Eastern Star.
The first President, Jaffa Miller, was succeeded by Herbert B. Holt, both Past
Grand Masters of New Mexico; the first Secretary was Alpheus A. Seen, Grand
Secretary of Freemasons, Albuquerque, New Mexico, and the Executive Secretary
was Francis E. Lester, Past Grand Master, Mesilla Park, New Mexico. The
Builder, National Masonic Researeh Soeiety, St. Louis, Missouri, had a monthly
department, "The North-East Corner," conducted vigorously and ably as a
Bulletin of the Association by Robert J. Newton, Las Cruces, New Mexico.
An association of Freemasons
who hold or have held commissions in the defense forees of the United States
Government. Detroit Chapter No. 1 was organized in 1919.
Because of crowded space in
ships and because of frequent changes of personnel early attempts to
constitute Lodges on board war vessels did not meet with large success, even
at the period when Thomas Dunckerley, master organizer, and himself member of
a Naval Lodge on H. M. S. Vanguard, put his enthusiasm behind them. In his
Lodge Lists, Lane names only four British Naval Lodges. Between 1760 and 1768
the Modern Grand Lodge chartered only three. In 1810, after a conference
called by the Grand Lodge of Scotland, the British Grand Lodges agreed not to
authorize Naval warrants. Men in the Navy, marines on sea duty, and seamen in
general found their Masonic homes in Lodges working in the ports, many of
which were Naval or Mariners' Lodges in effect. Masonic students have to be on
guard against confusing a Masonic meeting on board a ship, called by Masons in
its crew or passenger list or by a Military Lodge on board a transport, with
chartered Naval Lodges. (There are a number of instances where Masonic burial
services have been solemnized on board a ship; in one instance where a
retiring missionary died on board ship a group of Masons wirelessed to
Washington for permission to bring the body home for burial, and three of them
accompanied the body and the widow to her home in the Midwest.)
The Grand Lodge Manu, script,
No. 1, contains the following passage: "Yt befell that their was on curious
Masson that height [was called] Naymus Grecus that had byn at the making of
Sallomon's Temple, and he came into ffraunce, and there he taught the science
of Massonrey to men of ffraunce." Who was this Naymus Grecus? The writers of
these old records of Freemasonry are notorious for the way in which they
mangle all names and words that are in a foreign tongue. Hence it is
impossible to say who or what is meant by this word. It is differently spelled
in the various manuscripts.
Namas Grecious in the
Lansdowne, .Nayrnus Graecus in the Sloane, Grecus alone in the Edinburgh-Kilwinning,
and Maymus Grecus in the Dowland. For a table of various spellings, there are
about twenty-five, see Transactions, Quatuor Coronati Lodge (volume iii,page
163). Doctor Anderson, in the second edition of his Constitutions (1738, page
16), calls him Ninus. Now, it would not be an altogether wild conjecture to
suppose that some confused idea of Magna Graecia was floating in the minds of
these unlettered Freemasons especially since the Leland Manuscript records
that in Magna Graecia Pythagoras established his school, and then sent
Freemasons into France.
Between Magna Graecia and
Maynus Grecuns the bridge is a short one, not greater than between Tubal-cain
and Wackan, which we find in a German Middle Age document. The one being the
name of a place and the other of a person would be no obstacle to these
accommodating record writers; nor must we flinch at the anachronism of placing
one of the disciples of Pythagoras at the building of the Solomonic Temple,
when we remember that the same writers make Euclid and Abraham contemporaries.
Just so do we find w this "Curious Masson" flourishing at the widely different
periods of King Solomon and Charles Martel, a claim not easily explained on
The curiously puzzling problem
of Naymus Grecus which is discussed on page 700 is in a sense a Rosetta Stone
for the archeology of early Masonic Manuscripts, therefore the large amount of
time devoted to it by Masonic scholars has not been out of proportion. Robert
I. Clegg's penetrating suggestion in that article that Naymus Wrecks was Magna
Graecza is respected as one of the reasonable solutions. On page 94 of his
History of Freemasonry Mackey refused to commit himself except to reject
Krause's theory that Naymus had been Nannon, a Greek scholar of the period of
Charles the Bold. Edmund H. Dring contributed to Ars Quatuor Coronatorum, Vol.
XVIII., page 178, a treatise in which he brought his great erudition to bear
to prove that Naym?~s Grecus was a corruption of the name Alcuin. R. F. Gould
had proposed the theory that Naymus meant "some one with a Greek name." Wm. E.
Upton believed that Grecus was a genuine surname. Wyatt Papworth enumerated
eight possible derivations. Howard advocated the theory that a Greek colony in
France named Nemausus or Nismes was referred to; and with this W. J. Hughan
agreed. Sidney Klein took Naymus Grecus to be an anagram of Simon Grynaeus, a
15th century editor of Euclid. Russell Forbes took Naymus to have been an
architect who worked under Charlemagne. Speth and Yarker identified him with
Marcus Graecus. (The data immediately above are collected from the discussions
appended to Dring's treatise.)
To these may be added yet
another suggestion. Jewish scholars who divide the history, religion, and
literature of the Jews into the three periods of Eebraic, Israelitish, and
Judaic, begin the third period at the time when the Jews enlarged their own
culture to include, first, Hellenic culture, with its Greek language and
dialects, and (at a somewhat later period) Arabic culture. Mohammed received
most of what little education he possessed from Jewish teachers in his home
community, and it is certain that his Allah was his own theological
presentation of Moses Jehovah, a pure monotheism; when Mohammedanism swept
through the Near East and into North Africa and Spain it carried with it a
saturation of Old Testament and Talmudic lore.
During the long period when the regnant culture in North Africa, Egypt,
Arabia, the Near East, and some of Greece was an amalgam of Jewish, Hellenic,
and Mohammedan elements the word naymus was everywhere in use by it. In Greece
a naysus was a law-giver, or teacher, or great scholar. In the Talmud he was a
prophet, the term being taken to denote an orator, leader, scholarly reformer,
etc. Among Arabs a naymus was a "cryer out," or prophet or teacher; Mohammed
himself was called a naytnus. Perhaps in that whole culture (of which 80 much
infiltrated into Europe from Greece, Sicily, Spain, and from the Crusades) the
most famous Greek naymus was Pythagoras; and since he is in the Old
Manuseripts connected with Euclid, Naymus Grecus could easily have referred to
Pythagoras as the Greel; "Naymus." This is not to suggest that the author of
the Old Charges intended Naymus Grecus to be Pythagoras; rather it is to
suggest that originally Naymus Grecus had been a title, but that the author of
the 0ld Charges took this title to be a name; and it may be that it originally
had been a title used of Pythagoras.
A City of Galilee, in which
Jesus spent his childhood and much of his life, and whence he is often called,
in the New Testament, the Nazarene, or Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus Nazarenus was
a portion of the inscription on the cross (see I. N. R. I). In the Rose Croix,
Nazareth is a significant word, and Jesus is designated as "our Master of
Nazareth," to indicate the origin and nature of the new dogmas on which the
Order of the Rosy Cross was instituted.
In March, 1854, the region
between the Missouri River and the Rocky Mountains was divided by Congress
into the Territories of Kansas and Nebraska. The Grand Master of Illinois
issued a Dispensation for a Lodge at Bellevue to petitioners who were vouched
for by a member of Garden City Lodge, No. 18, and by Lafayette Lodge, No. 18,
both of Chicago. The Lodge was chartered as Nebraska Lodge, No. 184, on
October 3, 1855. On January 24, 1888, the Lodge moved to Omaha. Three Lodges,
namely, Nebraska, No. 184; Giddings, No. 156, and Capital, No. 101, sent
representatives to a Convention held on September 23, 1857, at Omaha to
organize a Grand Lodge. David Lindley presided and George Armstrong was chosen
Secretary. Grand Officers were elected: Brother Robert C. Jordan, Grand Master
and Brother George Armstrong, Grand Secretary. The name of Giddings Lodge was
changed to Western Star and that of Capital to Capitol. The Lodges were then
renumbered as Nebraska, No. 1, at Bellevue; Western Star, No. 2, at Nebraska
City, and Capitol, No. 3, at Omaha.
On November 21, 1859, Omaha
Chapter, No. 1, was granted a Dispensation by the General Grand King, and on
September 8, 1865, when this was reported to the General Grand Chapter, a
Charter was i88ued. At a Convention held March 19, 1867, at Plattsmouth, by
permission of the Deputy General Grand High Priest, the Grand Chapter of
Nebraska was regularly organized. Officers were elected and installed as
follows: Companions Harry P. Deuel and James W. Moore, Grand High Priest and
Deputy Grand High Priest; Companion David H. Wheeler, Grand King; Companion
Edwin A. Allen, Grand Scribe, and Companions Orsamus H. Irish and Elbert T.
Duke, Grand Treasurer and Grand Secretary. All who helped in the organization
of this Grand Chapter were later made Life Members. Nebraska is one of the
States which make the Order of High Priesthood an essential qualification to
the installation of the High Priest elect.
The Supreme Council of the
Southern Jurisdiction, Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, granted a Charter
for the organization of Omaha Council, No. 1, on July 8, 1867. Delegates from
Omaha, No. 1; Alpha, No. 2, and Furnas, No. 3, formed the Grand Council of
Nebraska on November 20, 1872. From 1875 to 1886 the Grand Chapter of Royal
Arch Masons controlled the Council Degrees in Nebraska, but they again came
under the Grand Council on March 9, 1886, and in 1889 the latter became a
member of the General Grand Council.
Mount Calvary Commandery, No.
1, was formed at Omaha by Dispensation dated June 16, 1865, and issued by
Grand Master Benjamin B. French. It was organized July 24 and chartered
September 6. Representatives of the four Commanderies of the State, Mount
Calvary, No. 1; Mount Olivet, No. 2; Mount Carmel, No. 3, and Mount Moriah,
No. 4, met in Omaha on December 28, 1871, and established the Grand Commandery
In 1881 came the beginning of
the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, Southern Jurisdiction, in Nebraska.
Mount Moriah Lodge of Perfection, No. 1, was chartered January 1; Semper
Fidelis Chapter of Rose Croix, No. 1, on January 17; Nebraska Consistory, No.
1, was granted a Charter April 12, 1885, and Saint Andrew's Council of Kadosh,
No. 1, on October 22, 1890.
About 630 years before Christ,
the Empire and City of Babylon were conquered by Nebuchadnezzar, the King of
the Chaldeans, a nomadic race, who, descending from their homes in the
Caucasian Mountains, had overwhelmed the countries of Southern Asia.
Nebuchadnezzar was engaged during his whole reign in wars of conquest. Among
other nations which fell beneath his victorious arms was Judea, whose King,
Jehoiakim, was slain by Nebuchadnezzar, and his son, Jehoichin, ascended the
Jewish throne. After a reign of three years, he was deposed by Nebuchadnezzar,
and his kingdom given to his uncle, Zedekiah, a monarch distinguished for his
vices. Having repeatedly rebelled against the Babylonian king, Nebuchadnezzar
repaired to Jerusalem, and, after a siege of eighteen months, reduced it. The
city was leveled with the ground, the Temple pillaged and burned, and the
inhabitants carried captive to Babylon. These events are commemorated in the
first section of the English and American Royal Arch system.
A Captain, or, as we would now
call him, a general of Nebuchadnezzar, who commanded the Chaldean army at the
siege of Jerusalem, and who executed there orders of his sovereign by the
destruction of the city and Temple, and by carrying the Inhabitants, except a
few husbandmen, as captives to Babylon.
The dark skin of Gabriel
Mathieu Marconis the elder, a founder of the Rite of Memphis, made him known
as the Negre, or Negro.
Composer of the song, the Aged
Brothers, the words written by Brother J. J. Smith, and sung at Freemasons
Hall, London, June 24, 1846, in aid of the Aged Freemasons Home.
Son of Haehaliah. During the
Babylonish captivity, given permission to rebuild the Temple and restore the
city, becoming Tirshatha or Governor of Judea and Jerusalem, for twelve years.
Literally translated, the Hebrew, Nehemiah, is Consolation af God.
All the Old Constitutions have the charge that "every Mason shall keep true
counsel of Lodge and Chamber" (see Sloane Manuscript, No. 3848). This is
enlarged in the Andersonian Charges, of 1722 thus: "You are not to let your
family, friends and neighbors know the concerns of the Lodge" (Constitutions,
1723, page 55). However loquacious a Freemason may be in the natural
confidence of neighborhood intercourse, he must be reserved in all that
relates to the esoteric concerns of Freemasonry.
The subject of Lodges of
colored persons. commonly called Negro Lodges, has long been a source of
contention in the United States. Dot on account of the color of the members of
these Lodges, but because of the supposed illegality of their origin and
Prince Hall and thirteen other
negroes were made Freemasons in a Military Lodge in the British Army then at
Boston on March 6, 1775. When the Army was withdrawn these negroes applied to
the Grand Lodge of England for a Charter and on the 20th of September, 1784 a
Charter for a Masters Lodge was granted (although not received until 1787), to
Prince Hall and others. all colored men, under the authority of the Grand
Lodge of England. The Lodge bore the name of African Lodge No. 459 (later
changed to loo. 370). and mas situated in the City of Boston. This Lodge, like
many others, had little connection with the Grand Lodge of England for many
years. and its registration, like many others, of Lodges still working. was
stricken from the rolls of the United Grand Lodge of England when new lists
were made in 1813.
African Lodge continued to
operate and in 1827 they proclaimed "that with knowledge they possessed of
Masonry, and as people of color by themselves, they were, and ought by right
to be free and independent of other Lodges." Accordingly on June 18, 1827,
they issued a protocol, in which they said: "We publicly declare ourselves
free and independent of any Lodge from this day, and we will not be tributary
or governed by any Lodge but that of our own." That is their present de facto
They soon after assumed the
name of the Prince Hall Grand Lodge and issued Charters for the constitution
of subordinates, and from it have proceeded the vast majority of the Lodges of
colored persons now existing in the United States.
On March 12. 1947 the Grand
Lodge of Massachusetts voted "to accept, approve and record" the report of a
special committee of Past Grand Masters on this subject which closed its
report with these words: "In conclusion your Committee believes that in view
of the existing conditions in our country it is advisable for the official and
organized activities of white and colored Freemasons to proceed in parallel
lines, but organically separate and without mutually embarrassing demands or
commitments. However, your Committee believes that within these limitations,
informal cooperation and mutual helpfulness between the two groups upon
appropriate occasions are desirable. " This was construed by some United
States Grand Jurisdictions as recognition, though not actually so, and
recognition of the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts w as withdraw n by some Grand
Lodges and threatened by others and in 1949 the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts
rescinded this resolution, not because they had changed their attitude. but
they said because it seemed inexpedient and this action was taken only for the
sake of harmony.
An apparently insurmountable
barrier to recognition is the doctrine of exclusive Masonic territorial
jurisdiction—only one Grand Lodge in any one state or territory. This rule is
confined to the United States and Canada. but is strictly observed and
enforced It prohibits invasion of occupied territory by any other Grand Lodge,
not alone those of Negro origin and membership.
Since the writing of the
article, a number of records of the Revolutionary Period have been discovered
which have made it more clear why Negro, or Prince Hall, Masonry is
clandestine in each and every American Grand Jurisdiction, and has been for
more than a century. Prince Hall sent a petition for a Charter to the (Modern)
Grand Lodge of Masons in 1777; according to Masonic law then in effect he
should have submitted his petition to one or the other of the two already
longest abolished Provincial Grand Lodges in Massachusetts, because he did not
ask for a military warrant. Owing to war conditions, and to the chronic
dilatoriness of the Modern Grand Lodge in responding to communications from
America, the Charter was not received until 1787; yet during this inchoate
period the self-styled African Lodge worked as a Lodge, made Masons, and
helped to initiate the formation of other Negro Lodges, all in violation of
Grand Lodge lau. The Charter itself became dormant, was rendered null and
void, and was erased from the lists by the Grand Lodge of England.
In 1827 a group of Negroes
made use of this piece of paper, which had become completely devoid of
authority, to set up a new "Grand Lodge," and in which they declared
themselves independent of any other Lodge—which declaration was in itself a
plain proclamation that in their own eyes they were a clandestine society, and
therefore not entitled by either Masonic or civil last to use the name
"Masonic." Bodies acting according to the so-called "Prince Hall
Constitutions" (which never existed) have continued to be clandestine ever
since. In 1930 they had 37 Grand Lodges, with some 750,000 members in some
5,000 to 6,000 Lodges; by 1940, and owing to the depression, the membership
had declined to about 500,000.
In 1899 the Grand Lodge of
Washington, acting on a Report submitted by William H. Upton, declared its
willingness to provide for Negro Lodges if a sufficient number of
regularly-made Negro members could be found; but when one after another of the
other Grand Lodges withdrew recognition, Washington rescinded its action. (See
under PEACE AND HARMONY.) Upton elaborated his Report in book form under the
title of Negro Masonry in 1902 the book is now obsolete because,
1) he did not at the time
possess complete data
2) because his argument to the effect that Prince Hall and his associates had
been regularly made and possessed a legitimate ritual in the beginning is
irrelevant. Many Lodges have become clandestine in Britain and America after
having worked for years as regular Lodges side the cases of Preston's Grand
Lodge of England South of the River Kent, and the Lodges under the so-called
Wigan Grand Lodge, and the many American Lodges which lost their charters
during the Cerneau affair; and because
3) the whole structure of the argument which Lipton based on his theory of the
Modern vs. the Ancient Grand Lodge is invalid.
See Negro Masonry in the
United States, by Harold van Buren Voorhis; Henry Emmerson; New York; 1940;
132 pages; complete bibliography; it contains a chapter on Alpha Lodge, No.
116, Newark, N. J., which has all Negro members. (There are Lodges under the
Grand Lodge of England with Negro membership.) Official History of Freemasonry
among the Colored People in Narth America, by William H. Grimshaw; New York;
1903; 393 pages. Prince Hall and his Followers, by George W. Crawford (a
Prince Hall member); New York; 1914; 96 pages. (Like other non-Masons Negro
authors find it difficult to understand Masonic data; their statements of fact
about actions taken by regular Grand Lodges may be checked against Grand Lodge
Proceedings. Negro writers very seldom, for example, have their facts straight
about actions taken at different times by the Grand Lodges of Massachusetts
and of Washington.)
The Egyptian synonym of the
Greek; Athené or Minerva.
But properly according to the
Masoretic pointing, Nakam. A Hebrew word signifying Vengeance, and a
significant word in the high Degrees (see vengeance).
Hebrew word, signifying
Tengeance, and, like Nakam, a significant word in the advanced Degrees.
A corruption of Nimrod,
frequently used in the Old Records
According to Hesiod, the
daughter of Night, originally the personification of the moral feeling of
right and a just fear of criminal actions; in other words, Conscience. A
temple was erected to Nemeses at Attica. She w as at times called Adrastea and
Rhamnusia, and represented in the earliest days a young virgin like unto
Venus; at a later period, as older and holding a helm and wheel. At Rhamnus
there was a statue of Nemesis of Parian marble, executed by Phidias. The
Festival in Greece held in her honor w as called Nemesia.
A name of the guardian of the
Greek , meaning newly planted.
In the primitive church. it signified one who had recently abandoned Judaism
or Paganism and embraced Christianity; and in the Roman Church those recently
admitted into its communion are still so called. Hence it has also been
applied to the young disciple of any art or science. Thus Ben Jonson calls a
young actor, at his first entrance "on the boards," a neophyte player. In
Freemasonry the newly initiated and uninstructed candidate is sometimes so
A philosophical school, estate
fished at Alexandria in Egypt, which added to the theosophic theories of Plato
many mystical doctrines borrowed from the East. The principal disciples of
this school were Philo-Judaeus, Plotinus, Porphvry, Jamblichus, Proclus, and
Julian the Apostate. Much of the symbolic teaching of the advanced Degrees Of
Freemasonry has been derived from the school of the Neoplatonists, especially
from the writings of Jamblichus and Philo-Judaeus.
Festivals, without wine,
celebrated in honor of the lesser deities.
NE PLUS ULTRA
Latin, meaning Nothing more beyond. The motto adopted for the Degree of Kadosh
by its founders, when it was supposed to be the summit of Freemasonry, beyond
which there was nothing more to be sought. And, although higher Degrees have
been since added, the motto is still retained.
The Hebrew word in:. The
synonym of misfortune and ill-luck. The Hebrew name for Mars; and in astrology
the lesser Malefic. The word in Sanskrit is Nrigal.
NESBIT, WILBUR D
American poet and humorist.
Born at Nenia, Ohio, September 16, 1871; died at Chicago, Illinois, August 20,
1927. Received the initiatory Degrees in Evans Lodge No. 524, Evanston,
Illinois, where his membership remained until his death. The Degrees of the
Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite were conferred upon him in 1919 at Chicago,
and he was honored with the Thirty-third Degree by the Supreme Council,
Northern Masonic Jurisdiction, at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on September 15,
1925. Also a member of Medinah Temple, Ancient Arabic Order Nobles of the
Mystic Shrine, at Chicago. Brother Nesbit wrote a number of poems of Masonic
significance one of which through his courtesy follows:
I SAT IN LODGE WITH YOU
There is a saying filled with
Which calls a man to fellowship.
It means as much for him to hear
As lies within the brother-grip.
Nay, more! It opens wide the way to friendliness sincere and true
There are no strangers when you say to me: mar sat in lodge with you."
When that is said, then I am known;
There is no questioning or doubt;
I need not walk my path alone
Nor from my fellows be shut out.
These words hold all of brotherhood and help me face
the world anew
There's something deep and rich and good in this: " I sat
in lodge with you."
Though in far lands one needs must roam,
By sea and shore and hill and plain,
Those words bring him a touch of home
And lighten tasks that seem in vain
Men's faces are no longer strange, but seem as those he
When some one brings the joyous change with his: " I sat
in lodge with you."
So you, my brother, now and then Have often put me in your debt
By showing forth to other men
That you your friends do not forget.
When all the world seems gray and cold and I am weary,
worn and blue
Then comes this golden thought I hold—you said: " I sat
in lodge with you."
When to the last great Lodge you fare
My prayer is that I may be
One of your friends who wait you there,
Intent your smiling face to see.
We, with the warder at the gate, will have a pleasant task to do
We'll call, though you come soon or late: " Come in ! We
sat in lodge with you."
Speculative Freemasonry was
first introduced in the Netherlands by the opening at the Hague, in 1731, of
an Occasional Lodge under a Deputation granted by Lord Lovel, Grand Master of
England, of which Doctor Desaguliers was Master, for the purpose of conferring
the First and Second Degrees on the Dul;e of Lorraine, afterward the Emperor
Francis I. He received the Third Degree subsequently in England. But it was
not until September 30, 1734, that a regular Lodge was opened by Brother
Vincent de la Chapelle, as Grand Master of the United Provinces, who may
therefore be regarded as the originator of Freemasonry in the Netherlands. In
1735, this Lodge received a Patent or Deputation from the Grand Lodge of
England, John Cornelius Rademaker being appointed Provincial Grand Master, and
several Daughter Lodges were established by it. In the same year the States
General prohibited all Masonic meetings by an Edict issued November 30, 1735.
The Roman clergy actively
persecuted the Freemasons, which seems to have produced a reaction, for in
1737, the magistrates repealed the Edict of Suppression, and forbade the
clergy from any interference with the Order, after which Freemasonry
flourished in the United Provinces. The Masonic innovations and controversies
that had affected the rest of the Continent never successfully obtruded on the
Dutch Freemasons, who practiced with great fidelity the simple Rite of the
Grand Lodge of England, although an attempt had been made in 1757 to introduce
them. In 1798, the Grand Lodge adopted a Book of Statutes, by which it
accepted the three Symbolic Degrees, and referred the four advanced Degrees of
the French Rite to a Grand Chapter. In 1816, Prince Frederick attempted a
reform in the Degrees, which was, however, only partially successful. The
Grand Lodge of the Netherlands, whose Orient is at the Hague, tolerates the
advanced Degrees without actually recognizing them. Most of the Lodges confine
themselves to the Symbolic Degrees of Saint John's Freemasonry, while a few
practice the reformed system of Prince Frederick.
One of the decorations of the
pillars at the porch of the Temple (see Pillars of the Porch).
NEUFCHATEAU, COUNT FRANÇOIS DE
See Francois de Neufchateau, Le Comte
On May 15, 1862, Carson Lodge,
No. 154, now No. 1, at Carson City was granted a Charter. At a meeting held on
January 16, 1865, to consider the formation of a Grand Lodge, six of the eight
Lodges in the State were represented. The following day delegates were sent by
seven Lodges, namely, Carson, No. 154; Washoe, No. 157; Virginia, No. 162;
Silver City, No. 163; Silver Star, No. 165; Escurial, No. 171, and Esmeralda,
No. 170. Lander Lodge, the only remaining one in the State did not appear at
the Convention but paid allegiance to the new Grand Lodge along with the
others. A Constitution was adopted, Grand Officers were elected and installed
January 17, and the first Annual Grand Communication at Virginia City was held
October 1S13, 1865. Ten years later the Grand Lodge lost heavily by fire. In
consequence the next regular meeting, at which 92 members and 286 visitors
were present, was held on top of Mount Davidson, 7,827 feet high.
A Dispensation was issued by
the General Grand High Priest, Companion John L. Lewis, in May, 1863, to Lewis
Chapter at Carson City, Nevada. Its Charter was dated September 8, 1865.
Companion Lewis granted authority to the four Chapters in the State, namely,
Lewis, Virginia, Austin, and White Pine, to take steps to form a Grand
Chapter. Three days later Charters were granted to two Chapters which were
working under Dispensation.
The early Councils in Nevada
were not long-lived owing probably to the fewness of the Companions who
started them. The first was Carson Council at Carson City. Its Dispensation
was issued on September 3, 1896, by the General Grand Council but was annulled
September 24, 1900. Several others were organized but ceased work before long
and the first to receive a Charter was Nevada, No. 1, at Goldfield, on
September 10, 1912.
The De Witt Clinton Commandery,
No. 1, at Virginia was established under a Dispensation from Grand Master
Henry L. Palmer, February 4, 1867, and was chartered September 18, 1868. It
was duly constituted and officers installed on January 8, 1869. When the Grand
Commandery of Nevada was organized on April 15, 1918, there were in existence
in the State three subordinate Commanderies, De Witt Clinton, No. 1; Malta,
No. 3, and Winnemucca, No. 4. Eureka, No. 2, had ceased work some time before.
In 1901 Charters were granted
by the Supreme Council, Southern Jurisdiction, to four bodies of the Ancient
and Accepted Scottish Rite at Reno, namely, Nevada Lodge of Perfection, No. 1;
Washoe Chapter of Rose Croix, No. 1; Pyramid Council of Kadosh, No. 1, and
Reno Consistory, No. 1. The Charters were dated respectively June 28, August
30, December l9, and December 20.
Latin, meaning Lest it should
be changed. These words refer to the Masonic usage of requiring a Brother,
when he receives a Certificate from a Lodge, to affix his name, in his own
handwriting, in the margin, as a precautionary measure, which enables distant
Brethren, by a comparison of the handwriting, to recognize the true and
original owner of the Certificate, and to detect any impostor who may
surreptitiously have obtained one.
New Brunswick was part of Nova
Scotia until the year 1786. On August 22, 1792, Solomon s Lodge, No.22, was
warranted by the Provincial Grand Lodge at Halifax. It was constituted at St.
Anns, now Fredericton, the capital of New Brunswick. When the Dominion of
Canada was established in 1867 the question of an Independent Grand Lodge of
New Brunswick was discussed and as a result fourteen Lodges opened a Grand
Lodge on October 10, 1867. Within four years all the Lodges in the district
came under the control of the new Body. Brother Robert T. Clinch, the District
Grand Master, was elected Grand Master but declined the office as he was still
on the English Registry. Brother B. Lester Peters was then elected and finally
installed on January 22, 1868. Capitular, Cryptic and Templar Freemasonry each
have Bodies in the Province.
The Ancient Colony of
Newfoundland remained without the Confederation of the Canadian Provinces.
Freemasonry in this island dates back to 1746, the first Warrant being granted
by the Provincial Grand Lodge at Boston. Brother J. Lane's list gives six
Lodges warranted in the eighteenth century. The Grand Lodge of the Ancient,
England is credited with four—one in 1774 and three in 1788—and the Grand
Lodge of England, Moderns, with two —one each in 1784 and 1785. Nine others
were chartered by the United Grand Lodge of England up to 1881, a number still
remaining active. Six Lodges were organized under the Scottish Jurisdiction. A
District Grand Lodge has been formed.
A petition was sent to Henry
Price of Boston on February 5, 1735, by six Freemasons at Portsmouth who had
been working for some time under Constitutions "both in print and manuscript."
No Lodge had up till then been chartered in Portsmouth but they probably
possessed a copy of the British Constitutions of 1723 and a set of older laws
in manuscript. It is likely that meetings were held by these Brethren even
before the establishment of the Grand Lodge in 1717. In 1787 a Convention of
delegates from two or more Lodges was called to organize a Grand Lodge but it
was not fully established until July 8, 1789. General John Sullivan was
elected the first Grand Master and the name chosen for the new body was "The
Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of the Ancient and Honorable Fraternity of Free
and Accepted Masons of the State of New Hampshire."
The General Grand King issued
a Warrant to Saint Andrew's Chapter at Hanover on January 27, 1807. The
Warrant was confirmed with others on June 7, 1816; at the Convocation of the
General Grand Chapter of the United States. On the organization of the Grand
Chapter of this State on June 10, 1819, the following officers were elected:
Grand High Priest and Deputy Grand High Priest, John Harris and Thomas S.
Bowles; Grand King, Henry Hutchinson; Grand Treasurer, John Davenport; Grand
Secretary, Thomas W. Colby; Grand Chaplain, Thomas Beede; Grand Marshal,
Timothy Kenrick; Grand Stewards, Companions Cady, Baker, Saxton, Pierce, and
Grand Tyler, Jesse Corbett. The Grand Chapter was recognized by the General
Grand Chapter at the Convocation held on September 9, 1819.
Tyrian Council of Royal
Masters was established by four Brethren on August 5, 1815. It was visited
about August 19, 1817, by Companion Jeremy L. Cross who conferred the Degree
of Select Master upon several members of the Council. Tyrian, Guardian,
Washington and Columbian Councils together formed a Grand Council for the
State of New Hampshire on July 9, 1823. From 1835 to 1855, however, the work
of the Royal and Select Masters in New Hampshire ceased owing to the Morgan
A meeting to organize Trinity
Encampment, No. 1, was held at Lebanon in March, 1824. Two other meetings were
held on April 8 and 15 and the Charter was received on April 10. During the
Morgan excitement the Encampment ceased work but was granted another Charter
on September 19, 1853. Sir Henry Fowle on May 27, 1826, granted a Dispensation
for a Grand Encampment. A meeting of delegates at Concord on June 13, 1826,
elected officers and chose Sir John Harris of Hopkinton as Grand Master. A
Constitution was adopted on June 14 and meetings were held regularly until
interrupted by the Anti-Masonic movement- on Tuesday, June 12, 1860, delegates
from five subordinate Commanderies, namely, De Witt Clinton, Trinity, Mount
Horeb, North Star, and St. Paul, were present at a meeting to reorganize the
Grand Commandery. A Warrant of Dispensation was granted on July 19 and, on
August 22, 1860, in the presence of Benjamin B. French, Grand Master of the
Grand Encampment, officers were duly elected and installed.
Two Charters were issued to
the Ineffable Lodge of Perfection at Portsmouth, one on January 31, 1842,
which was destroyed by fire in 1865, and a second on May 19, 1866. A second
body of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, the Grand Council of Princes
of Jerusalem at Portsmouth, was chartered June 25, 1845. On June 4, 1864,
Charters were granted to the Saint George Chapter of Rose Croix and the Edward
A. Raymond Consistory at Nashua.
The first Provincial Grand
Master in America, Daniel Coxe, lived in the State of New Jersey but did not,
it is believed, exercise his Masonic powers there. On May 13,1761, A Warrant
was granted by George Harrison, Provincial Grand Master of the Province of New
York to Freemasons in the Town of Newark. The first meeting place of this
body, the Saint John's Lodge, No. 1, of which the Minutes are preserved even
yet, was the Rising Sun Tavern. It met afterwards at the houses of the
members. William Tukey was named in the Charter as the first Master and under
his direction the Lodge flourished. Washington's birthday was always observed
as a festival and when the General's Headquarters were located at Morristown
in 1779, numerous military Lodges were organized. A Convention of Master
Masons was held on December 18, 1786, to consider the establishment of a Grand
Lodge for New Jersey. A Constitution was adopted on April 2, 1787.
In the Proceedings of the
General Grand Chapter for June 6, 1816, there is mention of a Warrant granted
to Washington Chapter, Newark, May 26, 1813. The General Grand High Priest was
reported to have granted permission for the formation of a Grand Chapter but,
owing to the fact that there was only one regularly chartered Chapter
subordinate to the General Grand Chapter in New Jersey, it was declared
impossible. Not until February 13, 1857, was the Grand Chapter of New Jersey
established by Newark Chapter, No. 2; Hiram, No. 4, and Boudinot, No. 5. The
Grand Council of Pennsylvania chartered New Brunswick Council, No. 12, on June
23, 1860. This Council wag later known as Scott Council, No. 1. New Brunswick,
No. 12; Eane, No. 11; Gebal, No. 14, the three Councils in New Jersey, all
chartered by the Grand Council of Pennsylvania, began work for the formation
of a Grand Council of New Jersey. A Convention was held at New Brunswick
November 26, 1860, when Nathan O. Benjamin, Grand Master of the Grand Council
of New York, was elected to preside and Joseph H. Hough, Deputy Master of
Gebal Council, became Secretary. The Grand Council u then opened in Ample
Hugh de Payens Commandery, No.
1, at Jersey City was granted a Dispensation March 12, 1858, and a Charter
September 16, the following year. It was duly constituted on November 25,
1859. The Grand Commandery was constituted on February 14, 1860, with three
subordinate Commanderies, Hugh de Payens, No. 1; Saint Bernard, No. 2, and
Helena, No. 3. In 1863 the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite was first
established at Trenton when the Mercer Lodge of Perfection was chartered, May
23, 1863. The Mercer Council of Princes of Jerusalem and the Trenton Chapter
of Rose Croix were both established at Trenton by Charters dated May 19, 1866,
and June 26 1868, respectively. On May 16, 1867, the New Jersey Consistory at
Jersey City was granted a Charter. These bodies are under the Supreme Council,
Northern Masonic Jurisdiction.
During the Mexican War
Freemasonry was brought into the district by military Lodges attached to
Regiments stationed there. Among these Lodges were Missouri, No. 86, and
Hardin, No. 87, but both were closed with the end of the Mexican War. The
Territory was then established and the Grand Lodge of Missouri issued a
Charter for Montezuma Lodge, No. 109, the first Lodge to be organized in the
new political division. It was duly instituted on August 22, 1851. A
Convention was held at Santa Fe, August 6, 1877, for the purpose of making
arrangements to establish a Grand Lodge. Simon B. Newcomb presided and A. Z.
Huggins acted as Secretary. Representatives of four Lodges, namely, Aztec, No.
108; Chapman, No. 95; Montezuma, No. 109, and Union, No.480, were appointed to
be present, but when the meeting took place those from the last named failed
to attend. The next day William W. Griffin was elected Grand Master and David
J. Miller, Grand Secretary.
The following Chapters were
organized under Dispensation and received Charters: Santa Fe, No. 1, Santa Fe,
December 11. 1865, September 18, 1868; Silver City, No. 2, Silver City,
February 22, 1876, August 24, 1877; Las Vegas, No. 3, Las Vegas, March 10,
1881, August 15, 1883; Rio Grande, No. 4, Albuquerque, January 12, 1882,
August 15, 1883; Deming, No. 5, Deming, February 28, 1885, October 1, 1886;
Raton, No. 6, Raton, no Dispensation, July 23, 1891; Columbia, No. 7, Roswell,
January 24! 1894, August 24, 1894, and Socorru, No. 8, Socorro, October 1,
1896, October 13, 1897. The Grand Chapter was organized October 3, 1898, and
W. H. Seamon was elected Grand High Priest and A. A. Keen, Grand Secretary.
Deming Council, No. 1, was
granted a Dispensation May 11, 1887, by the General Grand Council. Its Charter
was issued November 19, 1889, but was annulled November 4, 1909. Hiram
Council, No. 1, at Albuquerque, organized under a Dispensation, January 19,
1920, was granted a Charter from the General Grand Council on September 9,
1924. Zuni Council, at Gallup, was organized by Dispensation, April 3, 1922,
and Santa Fe Council at Santa Fe, April 19, 1922, a Council of that name under
Dispensation at Santa Fe, May 1, 1895, surrendered its Dispensation on
November 38, 1899.
A Commanlery organized in New
Mexico as Santa Fe, No. 1, was granted a Dispensation May 31, 1869.A Charter
was issued September 21,1871. When the Grand Commandery was instituted on
August 21, }901, there were six subordinate Commanderies in existence, Santa
Fe, No. 1; Las Vegas, No. 2; Pilgrim, No.3; McGrorty, No. 4; Aztec, No. 5, and
Rio Hondo, No. 6 on August 29 Malta, No. 7, was established at Silver City. A
Lodge of Perfection, the first body of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite,
Southern Jurisdiction, to be organized in New Mexico, was granted a Charter as
Santa Fe, No. 1, on April 8, 1886. On October 20, 1909, three more bodies of
the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite were chartered, namely, Aztlan Chapter
of prose Croix, No. 1 Coronado Council of Kadosh, No. 1, and New Mexico
Consistory, No. 1.
NEW SOUTH WALES
A state of the Commonwealth of
Australia, in the southeast portion of the island continent. Freemasonry owed
its introduction to this State to the Social and Military Virtues Lodge, No.
227 (Ireland), which, attached to the 46th Foot in 1752, was at work in Sydney
in 1816. Following on this, other Lodges, with a fixed abode, were opened
under Irish Warrants, the first of which was Australian Social Lodge, No. 260,
opened in 1820.
The Grand Lodge of England
chartered a Lodge entirely for Australians, Australia, No. 820, in 1828. In
1839 England appointed a Provincial Grand Master and Scotland and Ireland
followed suit in 1855 and 1858 respectively.
Representatives of twelve
Scottish and Irish Lodges met on December 3, 1877, and organized the Grand
Lodge of New South Wales. A body had however existed for some years which had
also called itself the Grand Lodge of New South Wales but its proceedings had
been highly irregular and when the new Grand Lodge was formed it accepted a
Lodge Warrant from the new authority. The latter however was itself refused
recognition by the Grand Lodges of the British Isles owing to there being
seventy-three other Lodges in the district over which the few had no right to
annex authority. On September 1, 1888, a Grand Lodge of West South Wales was
opened which was duly sanctioned by other Grand Lodges and the existing
dissension was thus ended.
An Order of five Degrees
instituted in France in the early part of the nineteenth century. The Degrees
were termed—Initiati; Intimi Initiati; Adepti; Orientales Adepti; and Magnae
aquilae nigrae sancti Johannes Apostoli Adepti.
NEWTON, SIR ISAAC
Was Sir Isaac Newton a Mason?
The question lies in the same case as that about Samuel Johnson (which see).
There is in Cambridge an Isaac Newton Lodge, No. 859, but the fact does not
prove Newton a Mason any more than the existence (at various times) of some
three Shakespeare Lodges proves that Shakespeare was a Mason. There are,
however, presuppositions in favor of his membership. Dr. J. T. Desaguliers was
one of Newtons closest friends, so close that Newton stood godfather to Dr.
Desaguliers' daughter; and Dr. Desaguliers at the time was the master builder
of the new Grand Lodge system of Speculative Freemasonry.
The Royal Society was the
apple of Newton's eye. Newton in turn was the leader, inspiration, and glory
of the Royal Society; and the membership of the Royal Society was so wholly
Masonic that six or ten of its members were in the same Lodge at the same
time; the Society's club shared its rooms with a Lodge; furthermore, a few of
the Lodges acted as extension centers for the Society at a time when it was
not yet popularly recognized and was the butt of much newspaper ridicule, so
that it meant not a little for Royal Society members to be able to deliver
scientific lectures (even on mechanics) to Lodges. Newton was therefore in a
Masonic circle. Also, one of the few of his papers published posthumously was
an attempt to work out the dimensions of Solomon's Temple. He had his formula
for gravitation held up for twenty y ears because he had forgotten that a
French mile and an English mile were not the same length. His calculations on
the Temple were held up even longer, forever in fact, because he found that
four different cubits were in use as units of measure in Solomon's time, and
he could nowhere discover which one had been used; nevertheless this interest
in Solomon's Temple is significant. As against these presuppositions in favor
of his having been a Mason stand two facts: no record of his membership has
been found; Sir Isaac himself w as "not a clubbable man."
The first Provincial Grand
Master from 1730, Colonel Daniel Coxe, did not take any active steps towards
the exercise of his new office. Captain Richard Riggs, however, who succeeded
him on November 15, 1737! arrived in New York on May 21, 1738. The Provincial
Grand Lodge was then organized and the first mention of Freemasonry in New
York which occurs in the New York Gazette of January 22, 1739, is thought to
refer to this body.
The fourth Provincial Grand
Master was the most active in organizing Lodges Temple and Saint Fohn's were
both alive in 1758 and the latter, the Charter of which was dated 1751, was
probably constituted first. On September 5, 1781, the Atholl Grand Lodge
authorized the constitution of a Provincial Grand Lodge of New York with the
Rev. William Walter as Provincial Grand Master. Nine Lodges united in its
formation, but Lodges constituted by the Moderns were excluded, and some years
elapsed before it was thought advisable to allow them to participate. In 1787
the Grand Lodge declared illegal all Lodges in the State not under its own
The Royal Arch Degree was
probably worked under the Lodge Charters at first. It is thought that
Washington Chapter began life with the Provincial Grand Lodge, warranted in
1781, but as its records were destroyed by fire the facts about its early
history are unknown. Five Chapters, namely, Hudson, Temple, Horeb, Hibernian
and Montgomery, constituted on March 14, 1798, a Deputy Grand Chapter for the
State of New York, subordinate to the Grand Chapter of the United States.
Companion De Witt Clinton was then elected Deputy Grand High Priest. Brother
Clinton also served as Grand Master of the Grand Encampment of New York, Grand
Master of Knights Templar of the United States and for fourteen years was
Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of his State, being furthermore United States
Senator, Mayor of New York City, and later was elected Governor of New York.
He did not hesitate to publicly defend Freemasonry when many in public office
were too fearful to be fair, or were even maliciously antagonistic. As
Governor he was prompt, judicial and thorough with the problems raised by the
Morgan mystery, and also wrote these sterling convictions to show his personal
"I know that Free Masonry, properly understood, and faithfully attended to, is
friendly to religion, morality, liberty and good government; and I shall never
shrink under any state of excitement, or any extent of misapprehension, from
bearing testimony in favor of the purity of an Institution which can boast of
a Washington and a Franklin and a Lafayette as distinguished members, which
inculcates no principles and authorizes no acts that are not in perfect
accordance with good morals, civil liberty and entire obedience to the
government and the laws." On January 10, 1799, the Grand Chapter to the
Northern States assumed the name, as it already had the status, of a General
Grand body and the Deputy Grand Chapters omitted the word Deputy from their
Columbia Grand Council, No. 1,
was opened at a meeting in Saint John's Hall on September 2, 1810. It was
probably a self-constituted body. On January 18, 1823, it was resolved to form
a Grand Council of Royal and Select Masters and at a Convention held a week
later Companion Lownds was chosen Most Illustrious Royal Grand Master.
In 1860 this Grand Council
united with another organized May 7, 1854, by representatives of Washington,
Pennell and Oriental Councils. A list of members of Morton's Encampment,
probably the first in the State, appeared in 1796. Reference to a procession
including Knights Templar in the Independent Journal of New York, December 28,
1785, suggests that the Encampment was at work years before 1796. Of those
established about the beginning of the nineteenth century, Temple Commandery,
No. 2, seems to be the oldest. A meeting was held on January 2, 1814, of the
leading Knights Templar in the State Assuming the necessary authority, they
chose officers for a Grand Encampment and on June 18, 1814, this body was
established with De Witt Clinton as Grand Master. June 21, 1816, the General
Grand Encampment of the United States was organized at New York. Ineffable
Lodge of Perfection and Grand Council of Princes of Jerusalem were chartered
at Albany on December 2O, 1767. Some years elapsed and on August 6, 1806, the
Chapter of Rose Croix of New York City and the Consistory of New York City
were both constituted.
A dominion consisting of a
group of islands in the Pacific Ocean about one thousand miles to the
southeast of Australia. Less than 100 years after the standing of the first
European in this country a French Lodge, Franqaise Primitive ntipodienne, the
Antipodes meaning the opposite side of the earth, was chartered at Akaroa on
August 9, 1843. The second and third were founded by the Grand Lodges of
Ireland and England respectively in 1844 and 1845.
After 1862 the progress of the
Craft gained impetus and many more Lodges sprang up. Between 1860 and 1875
fifty-four Lodges in all were warranted. On April 99, 1890, the Grand Lodge of
New Zealand was established by those Lodges which desired independence. The
others have continued their allegiance to their original Grand Lodges but have
always maintained a friendly attitude towards the Grand Lodge of New Zealand.
At the time of the writing of
the concise account of Freemasonry in New Zealand on page 707 the oldest know
n Lodge record was dated 1843. In Centennial History of the New Zealand
Pacific Lodge, Aro. It by R. C. G. Weston (published by the Lodge in 1942)
evidence is given of a Lodge at mork in 1842.
A republic of Central America,
between the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean. The Lodge of Regularity, No.
300, was granted a Charter by the Grand Lodge of England at Black River in
1763, but its name was removed from the register at the Union of 1813. Lodges
were opened also at Greyto an by authority of the Grand Lodge of Scotland.
About 1762 a Provincial Grand
Master, Brother Thomas 51. Perkins, was appointed by Lord Aberdour and this
authority was later extended to cover America.
Brother Street states in 1922'
report to the Grand Lodge of Alabaman "The Grand Lodge of Nicaragua has its
seat at Managua but we have been able to learn nothing of its history or
From the Danish word, Nikken.
The spirit of the waters, an enemy of man, the devil, or in the vulgate, Old
NICOLAI, CHRlSTOPH FRIEDRICH
Christopher Frederick Nicolai,
author of a very interesting essay on the origin of the Society of Freemasons,
was a bookseller of Berlin, and one of the most distinguished of the German
savants of that Augustan age of German literature in which he lived. He was
born at Berlin on the 18th of March, 1733, and died in the same city on the
8th of January, 1811. He was the editor of and an industrious contributor to,
two German periodicals of high literary character, a learned writer on various
subjects of science and philosophy, and the intimate friend of Leasing, whose
works he edited, and of the illustrious Mendelssohn. In 1782-3, he published a
work with the following title: Versuch über die Beschuldigungen welche dem
Tempelherrnorden gemacht worden und über dessen Geheimniss; nebst einem
Anhange über das Entstehen der Freimaurergegeselschaft that is, An Essay on
the accusations made against the Order of Knight's Templar and their mystery;
troth an Appendix on the origin of the Fraternity of Freemasons. In this work
Nicola advanced his peculiar theory on the origin of Freemasonry, which is
substantially as follows:
Lord Bacon, taking certain
hints from the writings of Andrea, the founder of Rosicrucianism and his
English disciple, Fludd, on the subject of the regeneration of the world,
proposed to accomplish the same object, but by a different and entirely
opposite method. For, whereas, they explained everything esoterically, Bacon's
plan was to abolish all distinction between the esoteric and the exoteric and
to demonstrate everything by proofs from nature. This idea he first
promulgated in his Instauratio Magna, but afterward more fully developed in
his New Atlantis. In this latter world he introduced his beautiful apologue.
abounding in Masonic ideas, in which he described the unknown island of
Bensalem, where a king had built a large edifice, called after himself,
Solomon's House. Charles I, it is said, had been much attracted by this idea,
and had intended to found something of the kind upon the plan of Solomon's
Temple, but the occurrence of the Civil War prevented the execution of the
The idea lay for some time
dormant, but was subsequently revived, in 1646, by Wallis, Wilkins, and
several other learned men, who established the Royal Society for the purpose
of carrying out Bacon's plan of communicating to the world scientific and
philosophic eat truths. About the same time another society was formed by
other learned men, who sought to arrive at truth by the investigations of
alchemy and astrology. To this society such men as Ashmole and Lily were
attached, and they resolved to construct a House of Solomon in the island of
Bensalem, where they might communicate their instructions by means of secret
symbols. To cover their mysterious designs, they got themselves admitted into
the Masons Company, and held their meetings at Masons Hall, in Masons Alley,
Basinghall Street. As Freemen of London, they took the name of Freemasons, and
naturally adopted the Masonic implements as symbols.
Although this association,
like the Royal Society, sought, but by a different method, to inculcate the
principles of natural science and philosophy, it subsequently took a political
direction. Most of its members were strongly opposed to the puritanism of the
dominant party and were in favor of the royal cause, and hence their meetings,
ostensibly held for the purpose of scientific investigation, were really used
to conceal their secret political efforts to restore the exiled house of
Stuart. From this society, which subsequently underwent a decadence, sprang
the revival in 1717, which culminated in the establishment of the Grand Lodge
of England. Such was the theory of Nicola. Few will be found at the present
day to concur in all his views, yet none can refuse to award to him the praise
of independence of opinion, originality of thought, and an entire avoidance of
the beaten paths of hearsay testimony and unsupported tradition. His results
may be rejected, but his method of attaining them must be commended.
NICOTIATES, ORDER OF
or the Order of the Priseurs.
As smoker, meaning a smoker of tobacco, so priseur means taker-a taker of
snuff. A secret Order mentioned by Clavel, teaching the doctrines of
Pythagoras From a strictly historical point of view the Society seems to have
had its rise about the year 1817, but its traditional history carries one back
to the closing years of the fifth century, and the persecution under Emperor
Justinian, instigated by his wife, Theodora. In so far as can be gathered,
Cachire de Beaurepaire, A. Meallet—Esline and Etienne Francois Bazot seemed to
have been the original members or founders of the Society. Brother R. E.
Wallace James was of the opinion, derived from various circumstances, although
he had as then no actual evidence sufficient to verify the belief, that to
Bazot should be contributed this honor.
The Society lasted only for
some sixteen years. The last meeting of which we can find any trace was a
banquet which was held in June, 1833. During these sixteen years, however, the
Priseurs gathered to the membership the bulk of the most famous Masonic
characters of the time resident in Paris. Among the first to join was J. M.
Ragon, who was admitted a member on June 1, 1817, at which time, though the
Society had only been a few months in existence, the membership numbered
twenty-five. Andre Joseph Etienne Le Rouge was admitted at the following
meeting, held upon January 21, 1818, and on his being appointed Secretary, he
became the ruling spirit of the Society. In short, the Priseurs were
apparently a very select little coterie of Parisian Masons who met together,
over their pipes and cigars, to discuss the various subjects connected more or
less with Freemasonry (see Transactions, Quatuor Coronati Lodge, volume xxviiu,
The Grand Lodges in the
British Isles are responsible for the introduction of Freemasonry into
Nigeria, a territory of West Africa. The English Grand Lodge controls five
Lodges at Lagos and one each at Calabar, Ebute Metta, Kaduna, Onitsha, Fort
Harcourt, Warri and Zaria; Ireland one at Calabar, and Scotland has two at
Lagos and one at Calabar.
Lodges, almost universally,
all over the world, meet, except on special occasions, at night. In some large
cities, as New York, Chicago, Cleveland, Lodges have been established of
Brethren whose occupations prevent their assemblage at other than the daytime,
hence these are usually called Daylight Lodges. In this selection of the hours
of night and darkness for initiation, the usual coincidence will be found
between the ceremonies of Freemasonry and those of the Ancient Mysteries,
showing their derivation from common origin. Justin says that at Eleusis,
Triptolemus invented the art of sowing corn, and that, in honor of this
invention, the nights were consecrated to initiation. The application is,
however, rather abstruse.
In the Bacchae of Euripides (Act in, line 485), that author introduces the god
Bacchus, the supposed inventor of the Dionysian Mysteries, as replying to the
question of King Pentheus in the following words:
Pentheus. By night or day, these sacred rites perform'st thou?
Bacchus. Mostly by night, for venerable is darkness;
In all the other Mysteries the
same reason was assigned for nocturnal celebrations, since night and darkness
have something solemn and August in them which is disposed to fill the mind
with sacred awe. Hence black, as an emblem of darkness and night, was
considered as the color appropriate to the mycteria. In the Masteries of
Hindustan, the candidate for initiation, having been duly prepared by previous
purification, was led at the dead of night to the gloomy cavern, in which the
mystic rites were performed.
The same period of darkness
was adopted for the celebration of the Mysteries of Mithras, in Persia Among
the Druids of Britain and Gaul, the principal annual initiation commenced at
low twelve, or midnight of the eve of May-Day. In short, it is indisputable
that the initiations in all the Ancient Mysteries were nocturnal in their
The reason given by the
ancients for this selection of night as the time for initiation, is equally
applicable to the system of Freemasonry. "Darkness," says Brother Oliver, "was
an emblem of death, and death was a prelude to resurrection. It will be at
once seen, therefore, in what manner the doctrine of the resurrection was
inculcated and exemplified in these remarkable institutions." Death and the
resurrection were the doctrines taught in the Ancient Mysteries;
and night and darkness were
necessary to add to the sacred awe and reverence which these doctrines ought
always to inspire in the rational and contemplative mind. The same doctrines
form the very groundwork of Freemasonry; and as the Master Mason, to use the
language of Hutchinson, "represents a man saved from the grave of iniquity and
raised to the faith of salvation," darkness and night are the appropriate
accompaniments to the solemn ceremonies which demonstrate this profession.
Japanese, meaning Chronicles
of Fisons The companion of the Rojiki; the two works together forming the
doctrinal and historic basis of Sintonism. The Japanese adherents of Sinsyn
are termed Sintus, or Sintoos, who worship the gods, the chief of which is
Ten-sio-dai-yin. The Nihongi was composed about 720 A.D., with the evident
design of giving a Chinese coloring to the subject-matter of the Kojiki, upon
which it is founded.
There is a tradition in the
old Masonic Records that the inundations of the River Nile, in Egypt,
continually destroying the perishable landmarks by which one man could
distinguish his possessions from those of another, Euclid instructed the
people in the art of geometry, by which they might measure their lands; and
then taught them to bound them with walls and ditches, BO that after an
inundation each man could identify his own boundaries. The tradition is given
in the Cooke Manuscript (lines 455-72) thus: "Euclyde was one of the first
founders of Geometry, and he gave hit name, for in his time there was a water
in that lond of Egypt that is called Nilo, and hit florid so ferre into the
londe that men myght not dwelle therein. Then this worthi clerke Enclide
taught hem to malre grete wallys and diches to holde owt the watyr, and he by
Gemetria mesured the londe and departyd hit in divers parties, and made every
man to close his own part with walles and dishes." This legend of the origin
of the art of geometry was borrowed by the old Operative Masons from the
Origines of Saint Isidore of Seville, where a similar story is told.
NIL NISI CLAVIS DEEST
Latin, and meaning Nothing
buff the key is wanting A motto or dence often attached to the Double Triangle
of Royal Arch Masonry It is inscribed on the Royal Arch badge or jewel of the
Grand Chapter of Scotland, the other — devices being a Double Triangle and a
The Legend of the Craft in the
Old Constitutions refers to Nimrod as one of the founders Of Freemasonry. Thus
in the York Manuscript. No. 1, we read: 'At ye makeing of ye Toure of Babell
there was Masonrie first much esteemed of, and the King of Babilon yt was
called Nimrod was A Mason himself and loved well Masons." And the Cooke
Manuscript thus repeats the story: 'And this same Nembroth began the towre of
babilon and he taught to his werkemen the craft of Masonrie, and he had with
him many Masons more than forty thousand. And he loved and cherished them
well" (see line 343). The idea no doubt sprang out of the Scriptural teaching
that Nimrod was the architect of many cities; a statement not so well
expressed in the authorized version, as it is in the improved one of Bochart,
which says: "From that land Nimrod went forth to Asshur, and builded Nineveh,
and Rehoboth city, and Calah and Resen between Nineveh and Calah, that is the
If the number three was
celebrated among the ancient sages, that of three times three had no less
celebrity; because, according to them, each of the three elements which
constitute our bodies is ternary: the water containing earth and fire; the
earth containing igneous and aqueous particles; and the fire being tempered by
globules of water and terrestrial corpuscles which serve to feed it. No one of
the three elements being entirely separated from the others, all material
beings composed of these three elements, whereof each is triple, may be
designated by the figurative number of three times three, which has become the
symbol of all formations of bodies. Hence the name of ninth envelop given to
matter. Every material extension, every circular line, has for its
representative sign the number nine among the Pythagoreans, who had observed
the property which this number possesses of reproducing itself incessantly and
entire in every multiplication; thus offering to the mind a very striking
emblem of matter, which is incessantly composed before our eyes, after having
undergone a thousand decompositions.
The number nine was
consecrated to the Spheres and the Muses. It is the sign of every
circumference; because a circle or 360 degrees is equal to nine, that is to
say, 3+6+0=9. Nevertheless, the ancients regarded this number with a sort of
terror; they considered it a bad presage; as the symbol of versatility, of
change, and the emblem of the frailty of human affairs. Wherefore they avoided
all numbers where nine appears, and chiefly 81, the produce of nine multiplied
by itself, and the addition whereof, 8+1, again presents the number nine. As
the figure of the number six was the symbol of the terrestrial globe, animated
by a Divine Spirit, the figure of the number nine symbolized the earth, under
the influence of the Evil Principle; and thence the terror it inspired.
Nevertheless, according to the Cabalists, the character nine symbolizes the
generative egg, or the image of a little globular being, from whose lower side
seems to flow its spirit of life. The Ennead, signifying an aggregate of nine
thongs or persons, is the first square of unequal numbers. Every one is aware
of the singular properties of the number nine, which, multiplied by itself or
any other number whatever, gives a result whose final sum is always nine, or
always divisible by nine. Nine multiplied by each of the ordinary numbers,
produces an arithmetical progression, each member whereof, composed of two
figures, presents a remarkable fact; for example:
1 . 2 . 3 . 4 . 5 . 6 . 7 . 8 . 9 . 10
9 . 18 . 27 . 36 . 45 . 54 . 63 . 72 . 81 . 90
The first line of figures
gives the regular series, from 1 to 10. The second reproduces this line
doubly; first ascending from the first figure of 18, and then returning from
the second figure of 81. In Freemasonry, nine derives its value from its being
the product of three multiplied into itself, and consequently in Masonic
language the number nine is always denoted by the expression three times
three. For a similar reason, 27, which is 3 times 9, and 81, which is 9 times
9, are esteemed ax sacred numbers in the advanced Degrees.
The capital of the ancient
Kingdom of Assyria, and built by Nimrod. The traditions of its greatness and
the magnificence of its buildings were familiar to the Arabs, the Greeks, and
the Romans. The modern discoveries of Rich, of Botta, and other explorers,
have thrown much light upon its ancient condition, and have shown that it was
the seat of much architectural splendor and of a profoundly symbolical
religion, which had something of the characteristics of the Mithraic worship.
In the mythical relations of the did Constitutions, which make up the Legend
of the Craft, it is spoken of as the ancient birthplace of Freemasonry, where
Nimrod, who was its builder, and "was a Mason and loved well the Craft,"
employed 60,000 Masons to build it, and gave them a charge "that they should
be true," and this, says the HarZeian Manuscript, No. 19g, was the first time
that any Mason had any change of Craft.
Also known as the Nine
Excellent Masters, Freemasons selected from Brethren. each representing a
Lodge in London and Westminster. Nine Brethren were elected every year by the
Grand Chapter to visit the Lodges and report to the Grand Chapter or to the
Right Worshipful Deputy Grand Master in order to preserve the uniformity of
the work in England. Appointment of the Body occurred in 1792 and it was
abolished in 1813. A special medal was used by these nine members, being
surrendered to the successors every year The medal, recalled by the Grand
Chapter in 1817 on one side represented Freemasons at work and on the reverse
side showed an incident in the Arch legend.
See Nalymus Grecus
The seventh month of the
Hebrew civil year, and corresponding to the months of March and April,
commencing with the new moon of the former.
NINE SISTERS, LODGED OF THE
A famous Masonic Body at
Paris, France, La Loge des Neufs Soeurs, whose request for formal organization
same before the Grand Orient on March 11, 1776. The name, Nine Sisters, refers
to the Muses, the classic nine goddesses presiding over the arts and sciences;
their names, their departments, and their characteristic attributes being as
follows: Calliope, epic poetry bearing wax tablet and pencil; Clio, history,
with B scroll; Erato, erotic poetry, with a small Iyre; Euterpe, lyric poetry,
bearing a double Hute; Melpomene, tragedy, with tragic mask and ivy wreath;
Polyhymnia, or Polymnia, sacred hymns, veiled and in an attitude of thought;
Terpsichore, choral song and the dance, with a lyre; Thalia, comedy, with
comic mask and ivy wreath, and Urania, astronomy, carrying the celestial
This truly remarkable Lodge had many noted members and it exhibited some
curious features. For instance, the tendency that has cropped up here and
there to some small extent to demur at any taking of an oath in the conferring
of a Degree was long ago considered by this Lodge and it decided adversely to
the practice. Among the leading Brethren of the Lodge was Benjamin Franklin,
the second Worshipful Master, who during his term of office, two years, had
undoubtedly a part of consequence in the organization mainly by the members of
his Lodge of the Apollonian Society, called after the fabled originator and
protector of civil order, the founder of cities and legislatures.
The President of this
organization was Antoine Court de Gebelin, who was Secretary of the Lodge in
1779. IIe was a member of several learned societies and the author of a
comprehensive work planned to extend over thirty volumes, of which he
published nine, entitled the Primitive World Analyzed and Comas pared with the
Modern World. This enterprise gave him such a reputation that he became the
Royal Censor, although a Protestant. In 1780, some months before the formation
of the Apollonian Society, the French Academy having the disposal for the
first time of the prize founded by Count de Valbelle awarded it to Court de
Gebelin as having produced the most meritorious and most useful work.
This writer having an
encyclopedic knowledge was an extremely zealous Freemason. Before the
foundation of the Lodge of Nine Sisters he was a member of another Lodge at
Paris, that of the Ami6 Reunis, Reunited Friends. He had been one of the
principal founders of the Rite of the Philalethes or Seeders of Truth which
played an important part in the Freemasonry of the period and which extended
its influence even beyond French territory. In 1777 he gave in a series of
seven lectures a course on the Allegories most resembling the Masonic Grades
where he had for hearers the most distinguished Freemasons of Paris.
The Apollonian Society was
organized November 17, 1780, and from the literary program of its first
meeting we can easily understand the nature of its activities. The institution
begun under its guidance was said to be "Particularly consecrated to encourage
the progress of the several sciences relating to the arts and to commerce." It
had two objects. The first was to offer to scientists, professional or
amateur, laboratories for their experiments. The second was of teaching the
use of machines and of demonstrating their application for the making of all
things necessary to life. The program included a course in physics and
chemistry, serving as an introduction to the arts and trades in which was made
known the natural history of the materials there used; a course in
experimental physics and mathematics which could be especially applied to the
mechanic arts; a course in the manufacturing of fabrics, of dyes and so on; a
course in anatomy showing its utility in sculpture and in painting, together
with the knowledge of physiology necessary to the art student; a course in the
English language and another in Italian. This was afterwards extended to
include Spanish and other tongues.
While a charge was made to
defray expense, yet some provision was arranged for free training. The
institution received upon its opening the favor of the learned societies and
responded with establishing new courses in mathematics, astronomy, electricity
and so forth. The name of the school became the Lycee, the Lyceum, named after
the great institution of learning opened at Athens by Aristotle. It went
through the Revolutionary period without being obliged to close its doors and
for sixty years this institution of the higher education continued the ideas
with which it was begun by the Freemasons of the Lodge of the Nine Sisters. A
long list of notable men of France attended. We are told that it "developed in
French society a taste for the higher studies. It contributed largely to the
expansion of new ideas and to make known scientific discoveries. It stimulated
public education. " we have mentioned what was done by the Lodge for training
along educational lines but there is a similar chapter in what its members did
for the protection of the innocent unjustly accused and for the reform of the
The active membership of
Benjamin Franklin in this Lodge raises an interesting question relative to the
influence this distinguished Freemason may have exerted regarding the attitude
of French Lodges in particular toward community problems. Franklin was the
founder of the club in Pennsylvania called the Junto, a sort of small debating
body in which the members educated one another by discussion.
This was popularly known as
the Leather Apron Caleb, a suggestive title, by the way, and the rules drawn
up by Franklin require that every member in his turn should submit one or more
questions on any point of morals, politics, or natural philosophy for general
discussion and once in three months produce and read an essay of his own
writing on any subject he pleased. What we know of this particular
organization and its interest in sociology is well worth study in connection
with what is here recorded of the Lodge of the Nine Sisters at Paris. The
history of the Lodge of the Nine Sisters was written by Louis Amiable, lawyer,
once Mayor of the Fifth District of Paris, Councillor of the Court of Appeals,
Grand Orator of the Grand College and formerly Member of the Council of the
Grand Orient of France. He died suddenly at Aix, January 23, 1897, only the
day following the writing of the last few pages of his book. As is
pathetically said on the flyleaf, "The work is published without having been
submitted to the corrections of the author."
Brother Amiable's book, Une
Loge Maçonnique d'Avard 1789, has the charm and "go" of an alluring novel full
of remarkable incidents and striking people— better, indeed, than any novel
could be, because the adventures are historical and the actors are real. The
wonderful book sketches with almost breathless sweep the electrically charged
zone of the French Revolution. For Freemasonry in France, like the progress of
the Craft in American Colonial days, was a school of patriotism.
Freemasonry of the French and
American Revolution was neither watery nor apologetic. In truth it was a home
and a laboratory for the cleansing fluid that acidly tried men's souls, that
assayed the pure gold from the dross and sent the refined product out into the
world to hang together or hang separately in the sacred cause of freedom. Says
Brother Amiable: Freemasonry was incontestably one of the factors of the great
changes which were produced in North America and in France, not by means of
some kind of international conspiracy, as has been pretended so childishly but
in the elaboration of ideas, in rendering public opinion clearer, wiser and
stronger, fashioning the men in the fray and whose action was decisive. Of all
the Masonic Lodges who exerted that influence in our country (France) the best
known, or perhaps I had better say, the least unknown today, is that which
received Voltaire some weeks before his death. Brother Amiable is justly proud
of the membership of the Lodge, the most famous men of the time. Violtaire,
the great writer; Lalande, the astronomer; Benjamin Franklin, who followed
Lalande as Borshipful Master; Paul Jones was a member; and there is a long
list of titled men, counts and marquises; eminent lawyers, as de Seze, who
defended the King, Louis XVI, before the Convention; groups of literary
leaders, Delille, Chamfort, Lernierre, and Florian, of the French Academy;
painters of international fame as Vernet and Greuze; the great sculptor Houdon;
musicians, as Precinni and Delayrac; while there was also a group of the
Revolutionist Party chiefs, Sieves, Bailly, Petion, Rabaut-Saint-Etienne,
Brissot, Cerutti, Foucroy, Camille Desmoulins and Danton.
The clergy themselves had
furnished the Nine Sisters with a notable array. Two churchmen took part in
the first grouping of founder members. On the day, when Voltaire was received,
the Lodge contained no less than thirteen priests of religion. One of these,
untiring in his zeal, took part in the work. Four others who came later into
the Lodge sat as members of the great Revolutionary Assemblies.
Brother Amiable tells us that
twelve members had their seats in the National Institute, some occupying the
highest positions; thus Francois de Neufchateau was president of the Senate
Fontanes, president of the Legislative Body; Lacepe, Grand Chancellor of the
Legion of Honor; while Moreau de Saint Mery—Worshipful Master in 1805 was
Councillor of State. Brother Amiable discusses Masonic service:
In 1780 the Lodge in community
service doubled herself, in some sort, by the foundation of the Apollonian
Society, called afterwards the Museum and then the Lyceum of Paris, from
whence was drawn the origin of that development of the higher public education
in our country, France. Again, by Deputy and Pastorate, the Lodge reinforced,
directed, and caused to triumph the great movement of opinion for the reform
of the penal laws, which had a satisfactory beginning in the Royal Declaration
of May, 1888, and which prompted the reformatory decrees of the Constitution.
Pages are given by Brother Amiable to the civil, literary, artistic, and
scientific activities of the members. The standard of qualification was lofty
and exacting, jealously cherished and enforced. He gives some extracts he
makes from the Lodge records. For instance,
The truly instructed Freemason, truly imbued with his duties, is a man free
from reproach and from remorse. He possesses, without dependence on
philosophy, the most sublime precepts of morality. He will be just because he
is benevolent and unselfish. None near to him are strangers, and he will be
himself neither strange nor aloof nor indifferent to any. All men will be his
brothers, whatever may be their opinions or whatever may be their country.
Lastly he will be a faithful subject, a zealous citizen, submissive to law and
conservation, subordinate to the duties of society by principle.
There is also in the same
Document a survey of the Lodge position: The Lodge of the Nine Sisters, in
making the Masonic virtues the base and support of its institution, believes
to have joined there the culture of the sciences, of letters and of the arts.
This is but reclaiming their true origin. The arts have had, like Freemasonry,
the unobtrusive advantage of bringing men together. It was to the sounds of
the harp and voice of Orpheus that the savages of Thracia abandoned their
caves. These were the fine arts that sweetened the customs of the nations;
they are the preservers even to this day of the graciousness of manners. Let
us labor then with zeal, with perseverance, to fill the double purpose of our
institution. Because the base constantly upholds the structure, let us
decorate it, but let not the new ornaments ever had the dignity of its ancient
The character of the Lodge was well exhibited in the following rule adopted by
The talents that the Lodge of
the Nine Sisters exact of a candidate, in order that he may justify the name
he bears, comprises the sciences and the liberal arts, to the end that any and
all subjects proposed to him ought to be dowered by whatsoever talent, be it
of the nature of the arts or of the sciences as the case may be, and that he
has already given a public and sufficient proof of possessing this talent,
Note that the candidate must
be publicly known as a talented man, This rule was not only carried out in
regard to the candidates, but was also in effect for affiliates. Nevertheless,
the rigor of the rule was not absolute. On occasion it was judiciously
relaxed. The Lodge, we are told, did not wish to deprive itself of the element
of strength that could be brought in by the co-operation of that considerable
group of persons who had not already given public and sufficient proof of
possessing some particular talent. Therefore the following qualifying rule was
There may be exceptions to the rule only when the candidates are distinguished
by their rank or by the honorable positions they occupy.
As a consequence of the
character of the Lodge we find the following requirement: All candidates for
initiation must be proposed or a member of the Lodge. His application and the
precise description are announced to all the Brethren by the Secretary. Three
members of a Committee are named to inform themselves of his life, his morals,
and of his talents, and upon these things they shall make report by word of
mouth or in writing. On this report there is taken a vote by ballot, and three
black balls suffice for rejection of the candidate. If the first ballot is
favorable, the candidate is simply authorized to ask in writing (by a letter,
not by filling out a blank) for his initiation. His request should be brought
into the Lodge by the proposer. On the receipt of that request the discussion
is reopened and he is subjected to a new ballot. The candidate is only
accepted on the following basis: The proposer and the members of the
Investigating Commits tee are the responsible agents. If, after the
initiation, there shad be learned, relative to the new Brother, such things as
cause the Lodge to regret his admission and thereupon to east him out of its
bosom, the proposer will be deprived of entrance to the Temple for five months
and the members of the Committee for three months.
We read from page 12 of La
Dismerie's Memoirs quoted by Brother Amiable:
It was necessary to give proofs of a regular and sustained conduct, of a
docile character, of a sociable humor. All measures that human prudence might
suggest were employed by us to anticipate and avoid in this regard every kind
Freemasons desiring to
affiliate with the Lodge were subjected to a like examination by an
Investigating Committee. A ballot was taken in every case and three black
balls were sufficient to reject the applications. A visit by a Freemason had
critical supervision. The visitor was only introduced after showing a letter
of summons signed by the Secretary and addressed to him with mention of the
Brother who had caused the invitation to be issued. Officers of the governing
Bodies of the Grand Orient itself were only exempt from this rule that aimed
at giving the Lodge all the privacy of a home.
In all that concerned the
solemn engagement taken by the new Brethren at their initiation, the
philosophical spirit of the Lodge manifested itself by a remarkable
innovation. Hitherto that pledge was invested with an oath. In the same way it
was accompanied by an imprecation against perjury. The Brethren of the Nine
Sisters held that the promise of a free and honest man should be sufficient
among upright folk. It was therefore regularly by a rule decided that the
candidate at initiation having submitted his proofs that the request for
admission called for. and having the right hand placed on the heart, shall
make a pledge of which here are the obligations: Of never saying, writing, or
doing anything in the Lodge against religion, against morality, or against the
Of being always ready to fly to the relief of humanity.
Of never disclosing the
secrets that are confided to him
Of observing inviolably the Statutes and By-Laws of the Lodge of the Nine
Of making every endeavor to contribute co-operatively to the glory and
prosperity of the Lodge.
From the Lodge By-Laws adopted in 1781 the Grand Orient took over the
innovation, amplifying the formula and putting therein certain other
obligations. But, after the Revolution, they reinserted the oath and the
imprecation against perjury, though a recent revision (th s was written by
Brother Amiable in 189S7) caused these to disappear.
The Lodge had twenty-five
officers, exclusive of the two substitutes to fill the positions of absentees.
There were three Orators. This is explained by Brother Amiable "by reason of
the importance of their use in such a Lodge." There were two Directors of
The first of these two officials, in 1778, is Dalavrae who figured with the
qualification of Guard of the Eing Dalavrac, aged twenty-five years, yet
unknown to the general public, but who became one of the most fertile and most
popular of composers in the style of Comic Opera.
These officers were all
elected annually in May. Three qualifications were necessary: He must be a
contributing member, have been at least a year holding membership in the Lodge
counting from the day he took his obligation, and has been present at five
Grand Assemblies in the course of the year prey ceding the election.
Independently of the reunions of Committees pertaining to administration,
there was every month a General Reunion or Grand Assembly followed by a
banquet, except in September and October which are the two months of vacation.
The meeting preceding the banquet is devoted to a concert and to specimens of
workmanship, that is to say, of literary productions. Three of these reunions
are more important than the others, of sueh were the two Festivals of Saint
John in summer and in winter, corresponding to the two solstices, and to that
reunion of May 9 in honor of the renewal of the hIason'c year. This last
comprised particularly an exposition of works of art produced by, and of
choice specimens of music composed by, brethren of the Lodge.
At each ord nary Grand
Assembly one of the Orators took the floor and spoke eulogistically of some
great man no longer among the living. The Worshipful Master, the Senior
Warden, the Archiviste (Keeper of Documents) and one of the Experts (an
officer having somewhat similar functions to oar Senior Deacon) ought also at
predetermined dates to produce pieces of architecture. (The French expression
for a Freemason's service done in the spirit of craftsmanship and exhibiting
the result of h's special talent.)
At every Festival of Saint
John, three Brothers, so designed at the preceding Festival, are to pronounce
respectively, one a eulogy upon a great man of the past; another, an example
of eloquence- the third, a specimen of versification. Moreover, a closing
discourse shall be given by one of the Orators at the Grand Assembly of August
9, preceding the vacation period- and a like address will be offered at the
reopening on November 21. All these are outside the pieces of architecture
presented by the newly admitted Brethren, and of such as all the Brethren are
at liberty to produce. It is difficult to imagine a greater intellectual
activity. Sever did a society of learned men make greater showing. He shall
see later by the testimony that is in our possession relative to certain
members of the Lodge, that the performance responded fully to the above
program. Two items in the regulations merit also to be specially mentioned.
The one instituted a
foundation at twelve hundred pounds for new editions of works by members of
the Lodge which shall be judged worthy, and which shall relate to the objects
cherished by the dine Sisters, to sciences, to literature, to the fine arts,
music, painting, engraving, etc. Brine Commissioners were named for each
occasion by the Lodge to judge upon the merits of the respective works. They
acted not, as is often done elsewhere, by making a mere investment, but made a
liberal advance payment, to give some leeway in view of future requirements.
The Lodge supervised the edition in a manner to bring it up to date, fresh and
timely, and two issues of the work were issued before the Brother to whom they
had made the advance was able to lay claim upon any profits.
Not less remarkable is the
injunction coming among those referring to financial benefactions an
injunction which imposes the special duty of assistance to those Brethren who
are lawyers, physicians, and surgeons. the obligation of giving their advice
gratis in consultation to all those who are recommended to them by the Lodge.
But there is more than that involved. The solemn obligation they have
contracted "to fly to the relief of humanity" implied that every Craftsman of
the Lodge of the Nine Sisters was devoted to the succor of victims of
injustice, at a time when great iniquities were so frequently committed, the
duty of imitating, as far as is possible, the noble example shown by Voltaire.
Such an engagement could not remain a dead letter in the Lodge which counted
among its members the most celebrated legal advocate of the period, Elie de
Beaumont, with whom the patriarch of Ferney was himself associated in the
defense of Calas and of Serven.
The text of the By-laws
provided in the case where one of the Brethren should have been charged with
the defense of the innocent unjustly accused, and where any state of affairs
rendered such papers necessary to the justification of the person under
attack, the lawyer Brother should be provided with an allowance up to a total
of one hundred pounds toward the printing and publishing of the statements in
question. Not so much was it the amount allowed, as will here be seen, but the
prompting to an act of devotion. Moreover, some time later, when Deputy
undertook the memorable struggle to save the three innocent persons condemned
to death by the Parliament of Paris. he spent much more than three hundred
pounds for the printing of the arguments that tore them away from the
Essays given to the Lodge were
rehearsed later before other notable gatherings. The eulogy upon Louis IX by a
member, the Abb d'E;spagnac, was later heard before the French Academy in
solemn session. In fact, the prize of the Academy, August 12, 1777, was
awarded to the Abbe Remy, later one of the three Orators in 1778, for a
repetition of a Lodge address. La Dixmerie says, however:
The taste for addresses is not
the only thing about our meetings. Everything that concerns literature, the
sciences, the arts, the morals, is there heard, welcomed, and encouraged. The
same author shows that from the very beginning the Lodge had made all sorts of
gifts to the indigent. Every year they remitted, to the principal of a College
of Paris, a generous sum to be distributed amongst students, "the least
fortunate and the most meritorious." The Lodge also provided education and
food for three poor children, and when these arrived at the proper age, the
Lodge placed them in an apprenticeship and paid the price of their being
taught the mastery of a business. Every Lodge Festival was the occasion of
generous collections for charity. The ecclesiastics of the Lodge were of
liberal tendencies. Remy wrote eloquently but irreverently of the Council of
Trent. Brother Amiable says: "To see the clergy censured by a priest is never
common. Of course it is true that this priest was a Freemason. That he was in
turn censured by the theologians was natural." We are told by Bachaumont: "But
the clerical power was humbled, the clamor of the clergy was impotent to
obtain from the Government the suppression of the printed work."
Another extract from the
Memoirs Secrets of Bachaumont tells that the Lodge decided on September 10,
1777, to give thanks by a solemn church service for the recovery from a very
serious illness of the Duke de Chartres, then the Grand Master of France.
Father Cordier, a very ardent
and very zealous Brother, presented the subject for deliberation in the Lodge
of the Nine Sisters, and the vote being unanimous for carrying the plan into
execution, it was arranged that on the next Wednesday, the 17th of the month,
there should be chanted a Mass and a Te Deum in music at the Church of the
Cordeliers as an act of grace for the happy event. There will be admission
tickets. separate entrance will be provided for the ladies and gentlemen and
those only may be admitted who have the signs of recognition.
As Henri Martin points out in
his History of France (page 397): "The reception of Voltaire among the
Freemasons was an episode deserving of memorial.
Their secret was but his,
'Humanity and Toleration."' There is an echoing expression in the verses
credited to Brother La Dixmeurie: "At the name of our Illustrious Brother,
today all Freemasons triumph. If he receives from us the light, the world had
it from him." On April 7, 1778, in the morning, was the initiation. Some two
hundred and fifty were present, Lalande, the famous scientist, presided. We
are told that "the elite of Freemasonry was present."
Father Cordier, declaring that he presented Voltaire for their initiation,
observed that an assembly as literary as it was Masonic, ought to be flattered
by witnessing the most celebrated Frenchman being desirous of admission among
them. He hoped that they would have a kindly regard for the great age and
feeble health of the illustrious neophyte.
Voltaire was born November 21,
1694, and there fore at his initiation was in his eighty-fourth year. The
dodge taking that request under consideration decided at once to dispense with
the greater part of the ordinary proofs, that he should not be placed blind
folded between the columns but that only a black curtain should hide the East
until a convenient season.
A commission of nine members
was appointed by the Worshipful Master to receive and prepare the candidate;
this was headed by the Count Stragonoff and the Candidate was introduced by
the Chevalier de Villars, the aged author leaning on the arms of Benjamin
Franklin afterwards Master of the Lodge and at that time Minister
Plenipotentiary of the United States) and Court de Gebelin. Questions on
philosophy and morals were propounded to Voltaire by the Worshipful Master and
were answered in a manner that compelled those present in several instances to
manifest their admiration.
He himself was strongly
impressed and all the more so when the curtain being suddenly removed he saw
the East brilliantly illuminated and the illustrious men seated there. He was
conducted to the Worshipful Master, where he took an obligation, after which
he was constituted an Apprentice and received the signs, words and grips of
this Degree. During this time the musicians, under the direction of the
celebrated violinist, Caproni, executed ia brilliant style the first part of
the third symphony of Guenin. Then Larive of the Comedie Franeaise placed upon
the initiate's head a crown of laurel.
We give a few extracts from
the address by the Worshipful Master to Voltaire, who was seated "by an
unusual distinction in the East."
Very dear Brother, the era
most flattering for this Lodge will be henceforth marked by the day of your
admission. It brings an Apollo to the Lodge of the Nine Sisters. She finds in
him a friend of humanity who reunites all the titles of glory that she is able
to desire for the ornamentation of Freemasonry. A King (Frederick the Great of
Prussia), of whom you have long been the friend, and who is known as the
Illustrios Protector of our Order, had inspired in you the taste for entering
it; but it was to your own country that you reserved the satisfaction of
initiating you to our mysteries.
After having received the
applause and the cheers of the nation, after having seen its enthusiasm and
its raptures, You come to receive, in the Temple of friendship, of virtue and
of letters, a crown less brilliant but equally solacing to the heart and the
soul. The emulation that your presence undoubtedly will spread and enforce,
giving a new luster and a new activity to our Lodge, will renown to the profit
of the poor she solaces, of the studies she encourages and of all the good she
ceases not to do. What citizen has so well served as you the nation in the
illumination of duty and of true interests, in rendering fanaticism odious and
superstition ridiculous, in recalling good taste to its true principles
history to its real purpose the laws to their chief integrity.
We Brethren promise to come to
the succor of our friends; but you have been the creator of a multitude who
adore you and who give a voice to your good deeds. You have raised a Temple to
the Eternal; but that which we value even more, we have seen near this Temple
and asylum, a refuge for men outlawed but useful, that a blind zeal had
repelled. Thus, my dear Brother, you were a Freemason before that time when
vou formally received that designation, and you were fulfilling Masonic duties
before you had taken the obligation between our hands. The square that we bear
is the symbol of the rectitude of our actions; the apron represents a life of
labor and of useful actingly, the white gloves express candor, innocence, and
the purity of our actions; the trowel serves to cover up the defects of the
Brethren; all these are relating to benevolence and love of humanity and
consequently, only expressing the qualities that distinguish you. We are but
able to unite you with us and of receiving you with the tribute of our
admiration and of our recognition.
There followed several
addresses in prose and verse by members, and a response by Voltaire. Court de
Gebelin presented a copy of his new book, the Primitiue World, and he read
that part of it concerning the ancient mysteries of Eleusis. During the course
of the proceedings, Monnet, Painter to the King, made a sketch from life for a
portrait of Voltaire.
Voltaire became very ill about
the middle of May and on the thirtieth sank into an unconscious condition,
dying during the night. Preparations for a suitable memorial meeting of the
Lodge were arranged for November 98, 1778. The correspondence of Bachaumont
shows how impressive and elaborate were the plans for this occasion, and
incidentally he mentions the fact that Doctor Franklin had inherited the apron
of Voltaire. Franklin acted as a Warden at this time. Of the ceremony we need
not go further than to say it was a remarkable display of esteem and affection
framed in a setting of rare splendor and charm. At the close there was the
usual offering taken by the Lodge for poor students distinguished in their
studies at the University. A further donation was proposed by the Abbe Cordier
de Saint-Firmin of five hundred pounds, French, to be deposited with a notary
for the apprenticeship to a trade of the first poor infant born after a
certain time in the Parish of Saint Sulspice. Several Brethren offered to
contribute to this fund (see Voltaire, also Franklin).
The descendants of Noah. A
term applied to Freemasons on the theory, derived from the Legend of the
Craft, that Noah was the father and founder of the Masonic system of theology.
Henee the Freemasons claim to be his descendants, because in times past they
preserved the pure principles of his religion amid the corruptions of
surrounding faiths. Doctor Anderson first used the word in this sense in the
second edition of the Book of Constitutions: "A Mason is obliged by his tenure
to observe the moral law as a true Noachida." But he was not the inventor of
the term, for it occurs in a letter sent by the Grand Lodge of England to the
Grand Lodge of Calcutta in 1735, which letter is preserved among the Rawlinson
Manuscript in the Bodleian Library, Oxford (see Transactions, Quatuor Coronati
Lodge, volume xi, page 35).
NOACHITE, or PRUSSIAN ENIGHT
The French expression is
Noachite ou Chevalier Prussien. There are two uses of the title.
l. The Twenty-first Degree of
the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite. The history as well as the character
of this Degree is a verv singular one. It is totally unconnected with the
series of Masonie Degrees which are founded upon the Temple of Solomon, and is
traced to the Tower of Babel. Henee the Prussian Knights call themselves
Nonwhites, or Disciples of Noah, while they designate all other Freemasons as
Hiramites, or Disciples of Hiram. The early French Rituals state that the
Degree was translated in 1757 from the German by M. de Beraye, Knight of
Eloquence in the Lodge of the Count Saint Gelaire, Inspector-General of
Prussian Lodges in France. Lenning gives no credit to this statement, but
admits that the origin of the Degree must be attributed to the wear above
named. The destruction of the Tower of Babel constitutes the legend of the
Degree, whose mythical founder is said to have been Peleg, the chief builder
of that edifice. A singular regulation is that there shall be no artificial
light in the Lodge-room, and that the meetings shall be held on the night of
the full noon of each month.
The Degree was adopted by the
Council of Emperors of the East and West, and in that way became subsequently
a part of the system of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite. But it is
misplaced in any series of Degrees supposed to emanate from the Solo monic
Temple. It is, as an unfitting link, an unsightly interruption of the chain of
legendary symbolism substituting Noah for Solomon, and Peleg for Hiram Abif.
The Supreme Council for the Southern Jurisdiction abandoned the original
ritual and made the Degree a representation of the Vehmgericht or Westphalian
Franc Judges. But this by no means relieves the Degree of the objection of
Masonic incompatibility That it was ever adopted into the Masonic system is
only to be attributed to the passion for advanced Degrees which prevailed in
France in the middle of the eighteenth century.
In the modern work the
meetings are called Grand Chapters. The officers are a Lieutenant Commander,
two Wardens, an Orator, Treasurer, Secretary, Master of Ceremonies, Warder,
and Standard-Bearer. The apron is yellow, inscribed with an arm holding a
sword and the Egyptian figure of silence. The order is black, and the jewel a
full moon or a triangle traversed bv an arrow. In the original instructions
there is a coat of arms belonging to the Degree, which is thus emblazoned, to
use the language of heraldry: Party perfuse; in chief, Azure, send of stars,
or a full moon, advent in base, sable, an equilateral triangle! having an
arrow suspended from its upper point, barb downward, or. Of these quaint terms
we may say that party per fess, means divided by a horizontal band across the
shield, some means strewn or scattered, or and ardent mean the colors of gold
and silver respectively.
The legend of the Degree
describes the travels of Peleg from Babel to the north of Europe, and ends
with the following narrative: "In trenching the rubbish of the salt-mines of
Prussia was found in 553 A.D. at a depth of fifteen cubits, the appearance of
a triangular building in which was a column of white marble, on which was
written in Hebrew the whole history of the Noachites. At the side of this
column was a tomb of freestone on which was a piece of agate inscribed with
the following epitaph: 'Here rest the ashes of Peleg, our Grand Architect of
the tower of Babel. The Almighty had pity on him because he became humble."'
This legend, although wholly untenable on historic grounds, is not absolutely
puerile. The dispersion of the human race in the time of Peleg had always been
a topic of discussion among the learned. I ong dissertations had been written
to show that all the nations of the world, even America, had been peopled by
the three sons of Noah and their descendants. The object of the legend seems,
then, to have been to impress the idea of the thorough dispersion. The
fundamental idea of the Degree is, under the symbol of Peleg, to teach the
crime of assumption and the virtue of humility. 2. The Degree was also adopted
into the Rite of Mizraim, where it is the Thirty-fifth.
The French title is Noachite
Souverain. A Degree contained in the nomenclature of Fustier.
The same as Noachidae, which
NOACHITES, FRENCH ORDER OF
See Napoleonic Freemasonry
In all the old Masonic
manuscript Constitutions that are extant, Noah and the Flood play an important
part in the Legend of the Craft. Hence, as the Masonic system became
developed, the Patriareh was looked upon as what was called a Patron of
Freemasonry. This connection of Noah with the rnystic history of the Order was
rendered still closer with the influence of many symbols borrowed from the
Arkite Worship, one of the most predominant of the ancient faiths. So
intimately were incorporated the legends of Noah with the legends of
Freemasonry t hat Freemasons began, at length, to be called, and are still
called, Noachidae, or the descendants of Noah a term first applied by Doctor
Anderson, and very frequently used at a much later day.
It is necessary, therefore,
that every scholar who desires to investigate the legendary symbolism of
Freemasonry should make himself acquainted with the Noachic myths upon which
much of it is founded. Doctor Oliver, it is true, accepted them all with a
childlike faith; but it is not likely that the skeptical inquirers of the
present day will attribute to them any character of authenticity. Yet they are
interesting, because they show us the growth of legends out of symbols, and
they are instructive because they are for the most part symbolic. The Legend
of the Craft tells us that the three sons of Lamech and his daughter, Naamah,
"did know that God would take vengeance for sin, either by fire or water;
wherefore they wrote these sciences which they had found in two pillars of
stone, that they might be found after the flood." Subsequently, this legend
took a different form, and to Enoch was attributed the precaution of burying
the Stone of Foundation in the bosom of Mount Moriah, and of erecting the two
pillars above it.
The first Masonic myth
referring to Noah that presents itself is one which tells us that, while he
was piously engaged in the task of exhorting his contemporaries to repentance,
his attention had often been directed to the pillars which Enoch had erected
on Mount Moriah. By diligent search he at length detected the entrance to the
subterranean vault, and, on pursuing his inquiries, discovered the Stone of
Foundation, although he was unable to comprehend the mystical characters there
deposited. Leaving these, therefore, where he had found them, he simply took
away the Stone of Foundation on which they had been deposited, and placed it
in the Ark as a convenient altar.
Another myth, preserved in one
of the Ineffable Degrees, informs us that the Ark was built of cedars which
grew upon Mount Lebanon. and that Noah employed the Sidonians to cut them
down, under the superintendence of Japheth. The successors of these Sidonians,
in after times, according to the same tradition, were employed by King Solomon
to fell and prepare cedars on the same mountain for his stupenelous Temple.
The record of Genesis lays the
foundation for another series of symbolic myths connected with the Dove, which
has thus been introduced into Freemasonry.
After forty days, when Noah
opened the window of the Ark that he might learn if the waters had subsided,
he despatched a raven, which, returning, gave hun no satisfactory information.
He then sent forth a Dove three several timed at an interval of seven days
between each excursion. The first time, the Dove Ending no resting-place,
quickly returned; the second time she came back in the evening, bringing in
her mouth an olive-leaf, which showed that the waters must have sufficiently
abated to have exposed the tops of the trees; but on the third departure, the
dry land being entirely uncovered, she returned no more. In the Arkite Rites,
which arose after the dispersion of Babel, the Dove was always considered as a
sacred bird, in commemoration of its having been the first discoverer of land.
Its name, which in Hebrew ie zonah, was given to one of the earliest nations
of the earth; and, as the emblem of peace and good fortune, it became the Bird
of Venus. Modern Freemasons have commemorated the messenger of Noah in the
honorary Degree of Orb and Dove, which is sometimes conferred on Royal Arch
On the 27th day of the second
month, equivalent to the 12th of November, in the year of the world 1657,
Noah, with his family, left the ark. It was exactly one year of 365 days, or
just one revolution of the sun, that the Patriarch was enclosed in the Ark.
This was not unobserved by the descendants of Noah, and hence, in consequence
of Enoch's life of 365 days, and Noah's residence in the Ark for the same
apparently mystic period, the Noachites confounded the worship of the solar
orb with the idolatrous adoration which they paid to the Patriarchs who were
saved from the Deluge. They were led to this, too, from an additional reason,
that Noah, as the restorer of the human race, seemed, in some sort, to be a
type of the regenerating powers of the sun.
So important an event as the
Deluge, must have produced a most impressive effect upon the religious dogmas
and rites of the nations which succeeded it. Consequently, we shall find some
allusion to it in the annals of every people and some memorial of the
principal circumstances connected with it, in their religious observances. At
first, it is to be supposed that a veneration for the character of the second
parent of the human race must have been long preserved by his descendants.
Nor would they have been
unmindful of the proper reverence due to that sacred vessel—sacred in their
eyes—which had preserved their great progenitor from the fury of the waters.
"They would long cherish," says Alwood (Literary Antiquities of Greece, page
182), "the memory of those worthies who were rescued from the common lot of
utter ruin; they would call to mind, with an extravagance of admiration, the
means adopted for their preservation; they would adore the wisdom which
contrived, and the goodness which prompted to, the execution of such a plan."
So pious a feeling would exist, and be circumscribed within its proper limits
of reverential gratitude, while the legends of the Deluge continued to be
preserved in their purity, and while the Divine preserver of Noah was
remembered as the one god of his posterity. But when, by the confusion and
dispersion at Babel, the true teachings of Enoch and Noah were lost, and
idolatry or polytheism was substituted for the ancient faith, then Noah became
a god, worshiped under different names in different countries, and the Ark was
transformed into the Temple of the Deity. Eence arose those peculiar systems
of initiations which, known under the name of the Arkite Rites, formed a part
of the worship of the ancient world, and traces of which are to be found in
almost all the old systems of religion.
It was in the six hundredth
year of his age, that Noah, with his family, was released from the Ark.
Grateful for his preservation, he erected an altar and prepared a sacrifice of
thank-offeringa to the Deity. A Masonic tradition says, that for this purpose
he made use of that Stone of Foundation which he had discovered in the
subterranean vault of Enoch, and which he had carried with him into the Ark.
It was at this time that God made his Covenant with Noah, and promised him
that the earth should never again be destroyed by a flood. Here, too, he
received those commandments for the government of himself and his posterity
which have been called "the seven precepts of the Noachidae."
It is to be supposed that Noah
and his immediate descendants continued to live for many years in the
neighborhood of the mountain upon which the Ark had been thrown by the
subsidence of the waters. There is indeed no evidence that the Patriarch ever
removed from it. In the nine hundred and fiftieth year of his age he died,
and, according to the tradition of the Orientalists, was buried in the land of
Mesopotamia. During that period of his life which was subsequent to the
Deluge, he continued to instruct his children in the great truths of religion.
Hence, Freemasons are sometimes called Pvoachidae, or the sons of Noah, to
designate them, in a peculiar manner, as the preservers of the sacred deposit
of Masonic truth bequeathed to them by their great ancestor; and circumstances
intimately connected with the transactions of the immediate descendants of the
Patriarch are recorded in a Degree which has been adopted by the Ancient and
Accepted Scottish Rite under the name of Patriarch Noachite.
The primitive teachings of the
Patriarch, which were simple but comprehensive, continued to be preserved in
the line of the Patriarchs and the Prophets to the days of Solomon, but were
soon lost to the other descendants of Noah, by a circumstance to which we must
now refer. After the death of Noah, his sons removed from the region of Mount
Ararat, where, until then, they had resided, and "traveling from the East,
found a plain in the land of Shinar, and dwelt there." Here they commenced the
building of a lofty tower.
This act seems to have been
displeasing to God, for in consequence of it, He confounded their language so
that one could not understand what another said; the result of which was that
they separated and dispersed over the face of the earth in search of different
dwelling-places. With the 106s of the original language, the great truths
which that language had conveyed, disappeared from their minds. The worship of
the one true God was abandoned. A multitude of deities began to be adored.
Idolatry took the place of pure theism. And then arose the Arkite Rites, or
the worship of Noah and the Ark, Sabaism, or the adoration of the stars, and
other superstitious observances, in all of which, however, the Priesthood, by
their Mysteries or initiations into a kind of Spurious Freemasonry, preserved,
among a multitude of errors, some faint allusions to the truth. and retained
just so much light as to make their "darkness visible." Such are the Noachic
traditions of Freemasonry, which, though if considered as materials of
history, would be worth but little, yet have furnished valuable sources of
symbolism, and in that way are full of wise instruction.
The writer of the Cooke MS.
(1410/1450 A.D.) had before him an original which may have been written about
1350 A.D. The author of that original frankly acknowledges that many of his
historical statements are taken from "the polycronicon," a sort of universal
history, or omnium gatherum, in which were collected scraps and fragments of
lore of many kinds, especially about the remote past, and without any attempt
to distinguish genuine history from myths, legends, tales, fables. It was from
such a polycilronicon that the writer of the Cooke original drew the story of
Noah and the Deluge which the Cooke condenses into a paragraph beginning at
line 290. According to the old tale thus taken from the polychronicon men knew
that God would destroy the world out of vengeance, either by fire or by water;
therefore in order to save them from destruction, men wrote the secrets of the
Arts and Sciences on two "pilers of stone." When the vengeance came, it turned
out to be by water as Noah had expected, and for 365 days he and his family
lived in the Ark. With him mere his three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth, and
their wives. Many years afterwards, the "cronyelere telleth," the two pillars
were found; Pythagoras found one, and Hermes the other.
The 0ld Charges (Masonic MS,
Old Constitutions, etc., they also were called) which served as a charter for
the first permanent Lodges of the Freemasons were held in great reverence; in
them was this story of Noah and the pillars, and it is from this source, it is
reasonable to believe, that pillar and column symbolism came to be used in
Speculative Masonry; and since the use of the Arts and Sciences traced
directly back to Noah's sons who recovered their use after the Deluge,
practitioners of them were sometimes called "Sons of Noah."
The first, or 1723, edition of
the Book of Constitutions of the Mother Grand Lodge touches but lightly on the
story of Noah, but in the second, or 1738. edition the whole account is
changed, the Arl; itself is described as having been a Masonic masterpiece,
and Noah and his three sons are described as "four Grand officers." "And it
came to pass as they journeyed from the East of the plains of Mount Ararat,
where the Ark rested toward the West, they found a plain in the land of Shinar,
and dwelt there as Noachidae, or Sons of Noah . . ." In a footnote the author
explains the word: "The Srst name of Masons, according to some old
What those "old traditions"
were nobody knows because there is no evidence that Operative Freemasons
called themselves by that name. But it was in some use prior to 1738, for in
1734 Lord Weyrnouth ordered a letter to be sent to the Prov. Grand Master at
Calcutta in which this curious statement was included: "Providence has fixed
your Lodge near those learn'd Indians that affect to be called Noachidae, the
strict observance of his Precepts taught in those Parts by the Disciples of
the great Zoroastres, the learned Archimagus of Bactria, a Grand Master of the
Magians, whose religion is much preserved in India (which we have no concern
about), and also many of the Rituals of the Ancient Fraternity used in his
time, perhaps more than they are sensible of themselves. Sow if it was
consistent with your other Business, to discover in those parts the Remains of
Old Masonry and transmit them to us, we would be all thankful ...." (A. Q. C.
XI, p. 35.)
If ever "Noachidae" was in use
as a name for Masons it could not have been extensive, because the word (an
ugly hybrid) is almost never met with in early Lodge Alinutes or Histories; it
is probable that such small use of it as is encountered in American Lodges in
the first half of the Nineteenth Century (it is now wholly obsolete) was
directly owing to the popularity here of the writings of the Rev. George
Oliver u ho never hesitated to give to fancies out of his own mind the same
weight as the verdict records of history
There mere two reasons for the
place of Noah and his sons in Masonic thought and traditions. It is obvious
that the writer of the Cooke MS—or rather, the author of the original of w
hich the Cooke is a copy —had an historical problem to solve: if the Deluge
destroyed everything how were the Arts and Sciences, Geometry especially,
preserved and recorded?
The story of the pillars and
of the use made of them by Noah's sons, which, as was seen, he found
ready-made in a polychronicon, was his solution. Second, the story of the sons
of Noah had a point to it of value for Masons who sought to make clear to
their own minds the religious foundations of the Craft. If Masonry w as
geometry and architecture it is as old as the world; if it existed in Stoah's
time it existed before Christianity, or Judaism either; and yet it now works
in Christian lands; how could a "Christian" society have a pre-Christian
origin? The answer was that under the separate religions is a ground, or
fundament, or matrix of a universal religion which consists of a belief in God
and Brotherhood among men, and righteousness. Oliver himself gives one of the
clearest expressions of this idea in a paragraph of his in A Dictionary of
Symbolical Masonry (New York; 1855; p. 190): "NOACHIDAE, Sons of Noah; the
first name of Freemasons; whence we may observe that believing the world u as
framed by one supreme God, and is governed by him; and loving and worshiping
him; and honoring our parents; and loving our neighbor as ourselves; and being
merciful even to brute beasts, is the oldest of all religions."
Not all the versions of the
Old Charges contain the Noah story in the same form; the Graham MS. version
which has so many details peculiar to itself, and is really an Old Catechism
more than a version of the Old Charges, gives the Noah story in a different
form and reads in it a different lesson; and it has the lost secrets
discovered after the death of Noah rather than after the death of Niram. In
his Ahiman Rezon, or Book of Constitutions, writing as Grand Secretary for the
Ancient Grand lodge of 1751, Laurence Dermott ridicules the whole story; but
it is only as history that he ridicules it, not as symbolism, because (to
judge by such written remains of it as have survived) the Ancient Ritual
connected the Great Pillars with the two "pillars" in the Cooke MS. Also, in
both Ancient and Modern symbolism and in the Royal Arch, the Ark is used as an
emblem. (This identification of the Ark with Noah's Ark may be a mistake on
the part of Eighteenth Century Ritualists, because before 1717 Operative Gilds
kept their papers in a "coffin"— which later reappears under the name
"casket," "the Lodge," and "ark.")
Notes. In a medal struck by
Henry Steel Lodge, No. 12, of Winchester, Va., on or about 1809, the emblems
on the obverse side include not only the Ark, but also a Dove— and—what is
more interesting—a Raven ! This same medal indicates that in Steel Lodge. the
Royal Arch was not as yet disentangled from the Third Degree because on the
reverse side of the same medal the Arch is surrounded by the emblem of that
Degree. See American Freemason; Louisville, Ky.; Jan. 1, 1855; page 51.
NOAH, PRECEPTS OF
The precepts of the Patriarch
Noah, which were preserved as the Constitutions of our ancient Brethren, are
seven in number and are as follows:
1. Renounce all idols.
2. Worship the one true God.
3. Commit no murder.
4. Be not defiled by incest.
5. Do not steal.
6. Be just.
7. Eat no flesh with blood in it.
The Proselytes of the Gate, as
the Jews termed those who lived among them without undergoing circumcision or
observing the ceremonial law, were bound to obey the seven precepts of Noah.
The Talmud says that the first six of these precepts were given originally by
God to Adam, and the seventh afterward to Noah. These precepts were designed
to be obligatory on all the Noachidae, or descendants of Noah, and
consequently, from the time of Moses, the Jews would not suffer a stranger to
live among them unless he observed these precepts, and never gave quarter in
battle to an enemy who was ignorant of them.
NOBLES OF THE MYSTIC SHRINE,
ANCIENT ARABIC ORDER
The name of this person is
differently spelled by various writers. Villani, and after him Burnes, call
him Noffo Dei, Reghellini Neffodei, and Addison Nosso de Florentin; but the
more usual spelling is Noffodei. He and Squin de Flexian were thefirst to make
thosefalse accusationsagainst the Knights Templar which led to the downfall of
the Order. Noffodei, who was a Florentine, is asserted by some writers to have
been an Apostate Templar, who had been condemned by the Preceptor and Chapter
of France to perpetual imprisonment for impiety and crime. But Dupui denies
this, and says that he never was a Templar, but that, having been banished
from his native country, he had been condemned to rigorous penalties by the
Prevost of Paris for his crimes (for a history of his treachery to the
Templars, Bee Squin de Flezian).
There are several Masonic
works, printed or in manuscript, which contain lists of the names of Degrees
in Freemasonry. Such a list is called by the French writers a Nomenclature.
The word means a system of names or of naming but is capable of an extension
much beyond these limits. For instance, Porter ( Human Intellect, page 399)
says, "The technical nomenclature of a single science when finished and
arranged, is a transcript of all the discriminating thoughts, the careful
observations, and the manifold experiments by which science has been formed."
The most important of these
nomenclatures pertaining to Freemasonry are those of Peuvret, Fustier, Pyron,
and Lemanceau. Pagon has a nomenclature of Degrees in his Tuileur Generale.
Thory has an exhaustive and descriptive one in his A cta Latomorum. Oliver
also gives a nomenclature, but an imperfect one, of one hundred and fifty
Degrees in his Historical Landrnarks.
It has been evident for some years past that the subject of Masonic
nomenclature is growing in importance to a point where Masonic scholars must
make it a specialty. Even now, and with investigations scarcely begun, the
clearing up of the original meaning of only five or six terms has occasioned a
recasting of a few of the most important pages in the history of the Craft.
When Anderson entitled his book in 1723 "Constitutions" he meant not a body of
organic, fundamental law but a book of customs and ceremonies; it was not
until the last quarter of the Eighteenth Century that the word became a term
for the Written Law, and it was the incorporating of one law after another in
a book of customs which changed the modern texts of Grand Lodge Constitutions
so radically that they have been led far away from Anderson's book. In many
Grand Lodge Codes the Book of Constitutions is published separately under the
head of "Old Charges."
In the General Regulations
adopted in 1721 by the Mother Grand Lodge, brethren are warned that "they must
obtain a Grand Master's Warrant to join in forming a new Lodge" by Warrant was
meant "permission," to be granted or not by the Grand Master personally, and
either the Grand Master or a deputy appointed by him was to be present in
person to constitute the Lodge. The first written Warrant (or Charter) as a
legal document, as possessing authority in itself, was issued by the Grand
Lodge of Ireland in 1755 and by the (Modern) Grand Lodge of England for the
first time in 1757.
The word Deputation which now,
as applied to a Lodge, means a temporary warrant (in America) granted by a
Grand Master to form a Lodge, meant in the early Grand Lodge period a letter
from a Grand Master to authorize a brother to act in his place to constitute a
Lodge; that is, it was authority granted to a man, not to a body, though
usually a Lodge was permitted to keep such a document in its possession.
The term Regular now describes
any Lodge which is chartered and is on the list of a recognized and
established Grand Lodge, any other body being a clandestine or spurious
society; originally "regular" only denoted such early Lodges as had come
voluntarily under authority of the Grand Lodge; this did not imply that Lodges
which had not done so were spurious or clandestine. The word Degree is now
generally held to have been a misnomer, though it is so widely rooted in usage
that it probably cannot be changed thus, the First Step should be called not
the Degree of Entered Apprentice but the Lodge of Entered Apprentices. The
correct name for the old documents is still under discussion; Hughan clung to
"Old Charges" because the Mason of earliest record called them that; Gould
preferred "Old Manuscripts." Since the Old Catechisms also are Old MSS. the
latter name is ambiguous. A correct, unambiguous name awaits discovery.
And the suggestion is here and
now made that the familiar "Time Immemorial" should be discontinued The phrase
came into usage apparently from Blackstone and naturally denotes something of
"which the memory of man runneth not to the contrary," hence a "time
immemorial" Lodge would be taken to mean a very old, an almost prehistoric
Lodge. It is on record that many "time immemorial" Lodges in Britain before
the constitution of the first Grand Lodge in 1717 were only ten to fifty years
old at the time; so with the "First Lodge" in Philadelphia. The name
"self-constituted Lodge" is recommended to take the place of "time
immemorial." Other terms of nomenclature now in the melting pot are dues,
jurisdiction, prerogatives, spurious, clandestine, irregular, universality,
It is the custom in some Grand
Lodges and Lodges to nominate candidates for election to office. and in others
this custom is not adopted. But the practice of nomination has the sanction of
ancient usage- Thus the records of the Grand Lodge Of England, under date of
June 24, 1717, tell us that "before dinner the oldest Master Mason . . . in
the chair proposed a list of proper candidates, and the Brethren by a majority
of hands, elected Mr. Antony Sayer, Gentleman, Grand Master of Masons"
(constitutions 1738, page 109).
The present Constitution of
the Grand Lodge of England requires that the Grand Master shall be nominated
in December, and the Grand Treasurer in September but that the election shall
not take place until the following March. Nominations appear, therefore, to be
the correct Masonic practice; yet, if a member be elected to any office to
which he had not previously been nominated, the election will be valid, for a
nomination is not essential.
The state of being unconnected
by membership with a Lodge (see Unaffiliated Freemason) .
In the Old Constitutions,
known as the Dowland Manuscript, is found the following passage: "Saint
Albones loved well Masons and cherished them much. And he made their pay right
good, . . . for he gave them ijs-vjd, a week, and iijd to their nonesynches."
This word, which cannot, in this precise form, be found in any archaic
dictionary, evidently means food or refreshment, for in the parallel passage
in other Constitutions the word used is cheer, which has the same meaning. The
old English word from which we get our luncheon is noonshun, which is defined
to be the refreshment taken at noon, when laborers desist from work to shun
the heat. Of this, nonesynches is a corrupt form.
A significant word in the
Thirty-second Degree of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite. The original
old French Rituals endeavor to explain it, and say that it and two other words
in conjunction are formed out of the initials of the words of a particular
aphorism which has reference to the secret arena and sacred treasure of
Freemasonry. Out of several interpretations, no one can be positively asserted
as the original, although the intent is apparent to him to whom the same may
lawfully belong (see Saliz and Tengu).
It is prescribed that the motto beneath the Passion Cross on the Grand
Standard of a Commandery of Knights Templar shall be Non nobis Domine! non
nobis, sed no7nini too da Gloriam. That is, Not unto us, O Lord! not unto us,
but unto Thy name give Glory. The commencement of the 115th Psalm, which is
sung on occasions of thanksgiving. It was the ancient Templar's shout of
The members of a Lodge who do
not reside in the locality of a Lodge, but live at a great distance from it in
another State, ore perhaps country, but still continue members of it and
contribute to its support by the payment of Lodge dues, are called rum
resident members. Many Lodges, in view of the fact that such members enjoy
none of the local privileges of their Lodges, require from them at least
amount of annual payment than they do from their resident members.
The editor of the fifth, and
by far the best, edition of the Book of Constitutions, which was published in
1784. He was the son of Herman Noorthouck, a bookseller, and was born in
London about the year 1746. Brother Oliver describes him as "a clever and
intelligent man, and an expert Mason." His literary pretensions were, however,
greater than this modest encomium would indicate. He was patronized by the
celebrated printer, William Strahan, and passed nearly the whole of his life
in the occupations of an author, an index maker and a corrector of the press.
He was, besides his edition of the Book of Constitutions, the writer of a
History of London, quarto, published in 1773, and a Historical and Classical
Dictionary, two volumes, octavo, published in 1776. To him also, as well as to
some others, has been attributed the authorship of a once popular book
entitled The Man after God's own Heart. In 1852, J. R. Smith, a bookseller of
London, advertised for sale "the original autograph manuscript of the life of
John Noorthouck." He calls this " a very interesting piece of autobiography,
containing many curious literary anecdotes of the last century, and deserving
to be printed." Noorthouck died in 1816, aged about seventy years.
Thomas Howard, eighth Duke of
Norfolk. Grand Master of the English Grand Lodge, installed January 29, 1730,
remaining until 1731, and succeeded by Lord Lovel. From Venice, 1731, he sent
the Grand Lodge of England the sword of Gustavus Adolphus, together with
twenty pounds for the Masons' Charity, and a handsome Minute Book. He died in
A perpendicular to a curve;
and included between the curve and the axis of the abscissas. Sometimes a
square, used by Operative Masons, for proving angles. The word means to act
according to an established standard and is from the Latin term signifying
both the square for measuring right angles and the rule or precept of personal
In the Scandinavian Mysteries
these were three maidens, known as Urd, Verdandi, and Skuld, signifying Past,
Present, and Future. Their position is seated near the Urdar-wells under the
world-tree Yggdrasil, and there they determine the fate of both gods and men.
They daily draw water from the spring, and with it and the surrounding clay
sprinkle the ash-tree Yggdrasil, that the branches may not wither and decay.
The north is Masonically
called a Place of Darkness. The sun in his progress through the ecliptic never
reaches farther than 23 28' north of the equator. A wall being erected on any
part of the earth farther north than that, will therefore, at meridian,
receive the rays of the sun only on its south side, while the north will be
entirely in shadow at the hour of meridian. The use of the north as a symbol
of darkness is found, with the present interpretation, in the early
instructions of the eighteenth century. It is a portion of the old sun worship
of which we find so many relics in Gnosticism, in Hermetic philosophy, and in
Freemasonry. The east was the place of the sun's daily birth, and hence highly
revered; the north the place of his annual death, to which he approached only
to lose his terrific heat, and to clothe the earth in darkness of long nights
and dreariness of winter.
However, this point of the
compass, or place of Masonic darkness, must not be construed as implying that
in the Temple of Solomon no light or ventilation was had from this direction.
The Talmud, and as well Josephus, allude to an extensive opening toward the
North, framed with costly magnificence, and known as the great Golden Window.
There were as many openings in the outer wall on the north as on the south
side. There were three entrances through the "Chel" on the north and six on
the south (see Temple). While once within the walls and Chel of the Temple all
advances were made from east to west, yet the north side was mainly used for
stabling, slaughtering, cleansing, etc., and contained the chambers of broken
knives, defiled stones of the House of Burning, and of sheep. The Masonic
symbolism of the entrance of an initiate from the north, or more practically
from the northwest, and advancing toward the position occupied by the
Corner-stone in the north-east, forcibly calls to mind the triplet of Homer:
Two marble doors unfold on
either side Sacred the South by which the gods descend; But mortals enter on
the Northern end.
So in the Mysteries of
Dionysos, the gate of entrance for the aspirant was from the north; but when
purged from his corruptions, he was termed indifferently new-born or immortal,
and the sacred south door was thence accessible to his steps.
In the Middle Ages, below and
to the right of the judges stood the accuser, facing north; to the left was
the defendant, in the north facing south. Brother George F. Fort, in his
Antiquities of Freemasonry (page 292), says:
In the center of the court,
directly before the judge stood an altar piece or shrine, upon which an open
Bible was displayed. The south to the right of the justiciaries was deemed
honorable and worthy for a plaintiff- but the north was typical of a frightful
and diabolical sombreness.
Thus, when a solemn oath of purgation was taken in grievous criminal
accusations, the accused turned toward the north.
The judicial headsman, in
executing the extreme penalty of outraged justice, turned the convict's face
northward, or towards the place whence emanated the earliest dismal shades of
night. When Earl Hakon bowed a tremulous knee before the deadly powers of
Paganism and sacrificed his seven-year-old child, he gazed out upon the
far-off, gloomy north.
In Nastrond, or shores of
death, stood a revolting hall, whose portals opened toward the north—the
regions of night. North, by the Jutes was denominated black or sombre; the
Frisians called it fear corner. The gallows faced the north, and from these
hyperborean shores everything base and terrible proceeded. In consequence of
this belief, it was ordered that, in the adjudication of a crime, the accused
should be on the north side of the court enclosure. And in harmony with the
Seandinavian superstition, no Lodge of Masons illumines the darkened north
with a symbolic light, whose brightness would be unable to dissipate the gloom
of that cardinal point with whieh waa aFoeiated alS that was sinstrous and
So many of our Masonic customs
hinge Upon the connection with old church practices that we are inclined to
add to the above summary a few additional particulars. The book entitled
Curious Church Customs, edited by William Andrews, 1898, has on page 136 the
Tradition authorizes the
expectation that our Lord still appear in the east; therefore all the faithful
dead are buried with their feet towards the east to meet Him. Hence in Wales
the east wind is called " The wind of the dead men's feet." The eastern
portion of a churchyard is always looked on as the most honoured next the
south then the west, and last of all the north from the belief that in this
order the dead will rise curious instance of this belief is furnished by an
epitaphon a tombstone, dated 1807, on the north side of Epworth Churchyard,
Lineolnshire, the last two lines of which run as follows:
And that I might longer
undisturbed abide I choosed to be laid on this northern side.
Felons, and notorious bad eharaeters, were frequently buried on the north side
of the church. In Suffolk most of the churches have both a north and south
door, and where old customs are observed, the bodes is brought in at the south
door, put down at the west end of the aisle and carried out by the north door.
In Lineolashire the north is generally reserved entirelv for funerals, the
south and west doors being reserved for christenings and weddings.
William Andrews, in a
companion volume dealing with Ecclesiastical Curzosities, 1899, has some
references to churchyard superstitions, and gives considerable space to
inquiries made regarding the old prejudices against being buried on the north
side of the church. This prejudice is proven in several parts of England by
the scarcity of graves on the north side of churches. The Reverend Theodore
Johnson, writing upon this subject, tells of taking charge of a parish in
Norfoll; and on being called upon to select a suitable place for a funeral
suggested that as there svere no graves on the north side of the church a
place could be assigned there.
This aroused vigorous
objection but no particular explanation beyond that of a desided dislike.
Further inquiry obtained the information that in some cases the north part of
the churchyard was left unconsecrated for burial of those for whom no
religious service was considered necessary. At last the clergyman found light
in visiting an old member of his flock during his last hours on earth. He was
a widower, and in speaking of his place of burial he particularly emphasized
the words "On the south side, sir, near by the wife." The clergyman in quired
why there was such a strong objection to burial on the north side of the
church, and the prompt and reproachful answer was at once made: "The left side
of Christ, sir: we don't like to be counted among the goats." The author
Here was the best answer to
the mystery, pointing with no uncertain words to the glorious Resurrection
Day, this aged, earthly shepherd at the end of his years of toil recognized
his Great Master, Jesus. as the True Shepherd of mankind, meeting His floek as
they arose from their long sleep of death, with their faces turned eastward,
awaiting His appearing.
Then when all had been called
and recognized He turned to lead them onward, still their True Shepherd and
Guide, with the sheep on His right hand, and the goats on His left hand, so
wonderfully foretold in the Gospel story: "When the Son of Man shall come in
His glory, and all the hole angels with Him, then shall He sit upon the throne
of His glory; land before Him shall be gathered all nations and He shall
separate them one from another as a Shepherd divideth ads sheep from the
goats: and he shall set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the
left." Matthew xxv, 31-3.
Surely, the above simple
illustration explains much that is difficult and mysterious to us in the wax
of religious superstition. Undoubtedly, we have here a good example of how
superstitions have arisen, probable from a good source, it may be the words of
some teacher long since passed away. The circumstance has long been for
gotten, yet the lesson remains, and being handed down by oral tradition only,
every vestige of its religions nature disappears and but the feeling remains,
which, b in the minds of the ignorant populace, increases in mysteries and
enfolds itself in superstitious awe, without any desire from them to discover
the origin, or Source, of such a strange custom, or event.
So much of our ceremonies and
instruction in the Craft is bound up intimately with the practices of the
Church that the foregoing details and the comments made upon them are well
worth notice and reflection. We need not in any enthusiasm for the prehistoric
and the religious customs of the older nations in the childhood of their faith
when the Mysteries of Greece and Rome were flourishing, overlook the equally
good claims for attention presented by the more recent traditions that survive
and thrive even unto our own times.
NORTH AMERICAN MASONIC
Zee General Grand Lodge
The Grand Lodge of England
warranted a Lodge in North Carolina at Wilmington in March, 1754 or 1755. This
was afterwards known as Saint John's, No. 1. A Grand Lodge s of North Carolina
was organized in 1771 which met at New Bern and Edenton, but its early history
is obscure owing to the supposed destruction of the records by the English
during the War of the Revolution. Representatives of seven Lodges, Unanimity,
Saint John's, Royal Edwin, Royal White Hart, Royal William, Union and
Blandford-Bute, met on December 9, 1787, to reorganize the Grand Lodge. In
1856 Saint John's College was established at Oxford, but during the war of
1861-5, when it was vacated by the students, it was converted into one of the
best orphan homes in the country. In charity as in everything else this Grand
Lodge has always achieved success.
The first mention of Capitular
Freemasonry in North Carolina occurs in the Proceedings of the fourth
Convocation of the General Grand Chapter where it appears that a Charter was
to have been issued to Concord Chapter at Wilmington, May 4, 1815, by the
General Grand King. He also granted one to Phoenix Chapter at Fayetteville,
September 1, 1815.
fit the thirteenth Convocation
of the General Grand Chapter held on September 14, 1847, at Columbus, Ohio,
the General Grand Secretary reported that a Grand Chapter of North Carolina
had once existed but had ceased work twenty years before; that according to
information just received it had lately been reorganized. An Assembly of
representatives of three Chapters had duly adopted a Constitution and elected
officers on June 98, 1847. On September 16, 1847, the Grand Chapter of North
Carolina was, after the alteration of one or two articles in its Constitution,
granted legal authority by the General Grand Chapter of the United States.
Five Councils had been
chartered in North Carolina before the organization of the Grand Council. In
each ease the document was signed by the Supreme Council of the Southern
Jurisdiction. All five were represented at a Convention for the organization
of the Grand Council at Fayetteville, June 21, 1822. In 1859 the Grand Chapter
resisted an attempt to incorporate the Degrees with the Chapter by a
declaration to the effect that it desired to exercise no such control. A Grand
Council was organized June 6, 1860, but owing to the Civil War no meeting was
held until 1866, and in 1883 it was dissolved altogether. The Degrees then
came under the control of the Grand Chapter until 1887 when the Grand Council
was again established.
The first official mention of
Templarism in North Carolina appeared in the Proceedings of the Grand
Encampment of the United States for September 19, 1826. The issue of a Charter
to Fayetteville Encampment among others on December 21, 1821, was the item in
question. This Encampment ceased work at an early date and the details about
an attempt made in 1845 to start another are not known. On September 16, 1850,
it was resolved by the General Grand Encampment of the United States to grant
renewed authority to Fayetteville and Wilmington. On January 10, 1881, the
Grand Commandery of North Carolina was established.
On November 91, 1892,
Asheville Lodge of Perfection, No. 1, at Asheville, was granted a Charter.
Charters were issued to a Chapter of Rose Croix, a Council of Kadosh, and a
Consistory, all located at Charlotte, namely, Mecklenburg, No. 1, October 5,
1901; Charlotte, No. 1, October 23, 1907; Carolina, No. 1, December 18, 1907,
respectively, under the Southern Jurisdiction of the Ancient and Accepted
When the Territory of Dakota
was divided into North and South Dakota in 1889 the question arose of the
necessity for a Grand Lodge in each of the two districts. It was decided that
there must be a division of Grand Lodges to correspond with the political
division. A Convention was held on June 12, 1889, at Mitchell which resolved
that a Grand Lodge for North Dakota should be organized. The following Lodges
were represented: Shiloh, No. 8; Pembina, Sto. 10; Casselton, No. 12; Acacia,
No. 15; Bismarck, No. 16; Jamestown, No. 19; Valley City, No. 21; Nandan, No.
23; Cereal, No. 29; Hillsboro, No. 32; Crescent, No. 36; Cheyenne Valley, No.
41; Ellendale, No. 49; Sanborn, No. 51; Wahpeton, No. 58; North Star, No. 59;
Minto, No. 60; Mackey, No. 63; Goose River, No. 64; Hiram, No. 74; Minnewaukan,
Bio. 75; Tongue River, No. 78; Bathgate, No. 80; Euelid, No. 84; Anchor, No.
88; Golden Valley, No. 90; Occidental, No. 99. A Constitution and By-laws were
adopted, Grand Officers duly elected, and the first session held the following
A similar problem occurred
with regard to the Grand Chapter of North Dakota. The Chapters in South Dakota
had organized their Grand Chapter on January 6, 1890. Thereupon the
representatives of Missouri, No. 6; Casselton, No. 7; Cheyenne, No. 9;
Keystone, No. 11; Jamestown, No. 13, and Lisbon, No. 29, organized on January
9 the Grand Chapter of North Dakota. The first Annual Convocation was held at
Grand Forks, nine days later.
The first Council in North
Dakota, Fargo, No. 1, was granted a Dispensation on February 12, 1889, while
the Territory was still undivided. It was chartered, however, five months
after the division took place, on November 19, 1889. At a Convention held on
March 20, 1916, members of Fargo Council, No. 1; Lebanon, No. 2, and Adoniram,
No. 3, organized the Grand Council of North Dakota as a constituent member of
the General Grand Council.
The Grand Master of the Grand Encampment of the United States issued a
Dispensation to form the Commandery of North Dakota on June 4, 1890. Thereupon
Tancred, No. 4; Fargo, No. 5; Grand Forks, No. 8, and Wi-ha-ha, No. 12,
Commanderies on June 16, 1890, organized the Grand Commandery of North Dakota.
With regard to the Ancient and
Accepted Scottish Rite, Southern Jurisdiction, Dakota Consistory, No. 1, was
chartered on May 26, 1886; Fargo Council of Kadosh, No.1, on December 8,1883;
Pelican Chapter of Rose Croix, No. 1, on June 19, 1883, and Enoch Lodge of
Perfection, No. 1, on June 7, 1883.
In the Institutes of Menu, the
sacred book of the Brahmans, it is said: "If any one has an incurable disease,
let him advance in a straight path towards the invincible northeast point,
feeding on water and air till his mortal frame totally decays, and his soul
becomes united with the supreme." It is at the same northeast point that those
first instructions begin in Freemasonry which enable the true Freemason to
commence the erection of that spiritual temple in which, after the decay of
his mortal frame, "his soul becomes united with the supreme. "
In the important ceremony
which refers to the Northeast Corner of the Lodge, the Candidate becomes as
one who is, to all outward appearance, a perfect and upright 7nan and Mason,
the representative of a spiritual Corner-stone, on which he is to erect his
future moral and Masonic edifice. This symbolic reference of the Corner-stone
of a material edifice to a Freemason when, at his first initiation, he
commences the moral and intellectual task of erecting a spiritual temple in
his heart, is beautifully sustained when we look at all the qualities that are
required to constitute a "well-tried, true, and trusty" Corner-stone. The
squareness of its surface, emblematic of morality its cubical form, emblematic
of firmness and stability of character and the peculiar finish and fineness of
the material, emblematic of virtue and holiness show that the ceremony of the
Northeast Corner of the Lodge was undoubtedly intended to portray, in the
consecrated language of symbolism, the necessity of integrity and stability of
conduct, of truthfulness and uprightness of character, and of purity and
holiness of life, which, just at that time and in that place, the candidate is
most impressively charged to maintain.
This star is frequently used
as a Masonic symbol, as are the morning star, the day star, the seven stars.
Thus, the morning star is the forerunner of the Great Light that is about to
break upon the Lodge; or, as in the grade of Grand Master Architect, twelfth
of the Scottish System, the initiate is received at the hour "when the day
star has risen in the east, and the north star looked down upon the seven
stars that circle round him." The symbolism is truth; the North Star is the
Pole Star, the Polaris of the mariner, the Cynosura. that guides Freemasons
over the stormy seas of time. The seven stars are the symbol of right and
justice to the Order and the country.
Freemasonry must be studied in
Sweden and Denmark jointly with Norway as politically the three were united
for many years and the Swedish Rite has left a permanent impression on all of
these countries. As far back as the year 1030 A.D., Danish power controlled
Norway. Soon a Swedish King was chosen over Norway, 1036, and then in 1380 a
King of Denmark became ruler of the sister nations.
So it continued until 1814
when Denmark ceded Norway to Sweden and this union lasted until June, 190S,
when a Swedish Prince was chosen as King Haakon VII. Some few Lodges in Norway
erected by Danish authority came under the control of the Grand Lodge of
Sweden when the two countries were politically united, this Grand Lodge being
formed in 1759.
A separation of the countries,
Sweden and Norway, involves a governing division Masonically and there is a
Grand Lodge of Norway. From 1796 by Royal Edict all Swedish Princes have been
members of the Craft. A Civil Order was also instituted by the King, Charles
XIII, Grand Master, to be conferred on the Princess and no more than thirty
others of the tenth Degree of the Rite, which is dominantly Christian. The
Grand National Lodge of Berlin, uses a like Ritual. A Provincial Grand Lodge
operated from May 7, 1793, under the Grand Lodge Zur Sonne, the latter having
its headquarters at Bayreuth, Germany. This was constituted as the Grand Lodge
Den Norskc Polarstjernen on May 8, 1920.
A significant word in some of
the advanced Degrees of the Templar System. It is the anagram of Aumont, who
is said to have been the first Grand Master of the Templars in Scotland, and
the restorer of the Order after the death of DeMolay.
A slab of rock discovered in
1827 on Goat Island in the Annapolis Basin was found to be engraved with the
Square and Compasses and the date 1606, but the history of it remains unknown
and nothing can be guessed of its origin. The first Lodge in Nova Scotia was
established at Annapolis by authority of the Saint John's Grand Lodge of
Massachusetts at some time previous to 1740. Nova Scotia was originally
governed by the Provincial Grand Master of New England, whose authority
extended over all North America, but on September 24, 1784, Brother John
George Pvke was appointed Provincial Grand Master of a Provincial Grand Lodge
formed that day and warranted the previous June. On January 16, 1866, all the
Scotch Lodges but one called a meeting at which it was decided to summon a
Convention on February 20. A Grand Lodge was duly formed and Brother W. H.
Davies elected Grand Master. In 1869 the remaining Scotch Lodge and the
English District Grand Lodge united with the new body under the name of The
Grand Lodge of Ancient, Free and Accepted Masons of Nova Scotia.
1. The Second Degree of the
Illuminati of Bavaria. 2. The Fifth Decree of the Rite of Strict Observance.
That in French is to say a
female Mason who is a Novice. It is the First Degree of the Moral Order of the
Dames of Mount Tabor
The French title is Novice
Mythologigue. The First Degree of the Historical Order of the Dames of Mount
In French the title is bodice
Ecossaise. The First Degree of initiation in the Order of Mount Tabor.
The time of probation, as well
as of preparatory training, which, in all Religious Orders, precedes the
solemn profession at least one year. By Dispensation only can the period of
time be reduced. Novices are immediately subject to a superior called Master
of Voices, and their time must be devoted to prayer and to liturgical
The Egyptian equivalent for
the expression "I am that I am."
The symbolism which is derived
from numbers was common to the Pythagoreans, the Cabalists the Gnostics, and
all mystical associations. Of all superstitions. it is the oldest and the most
generally diffused. Allusions are to be found to it in all Systems of
religion; the Jewish Scriptures, for instance, abound in it, and the Christian
shows a share of its influence- It is not, therefore, surprising that the most
predominant of all symbolism in Freemasonry is that of numbers. The doctrine
of numbers as symbols is most familiar to us because it formed the fundamental
idea of the philosophy of Pythagoras. Yet it was not original with him, since
he brought his theories from Egypt and the East, where this numerical
symbolism had always prevailed. Jamblichus tells us (On the Pythagorean Life,
28) that Pythagoras himself admitted that he had received the doctrine of
numbers from Orpheus, who taught that numbers were the most provident
beginning of all things in heaven, earth, and the intermediate space, and the
root of the perpetuity of Divine beings, of the gods and of demons. From the
disciples of Pythagoras we learn, for he himself taught only orally, and left
no writings, that his theory was that numbers contain the elements of all
things, and even of the sciences. Numbers are the invisible covering of beings
as the body is the visible one. They are the primary causes upon which the
whole system of the universe rests; and he who knows these numbers knows at
the same time the laws through which nature exists.
The Pythagoreans, said
Aristotle (Metaphysica xii, 5), make all things proceed from numbers. Dacier
(Life of Pythagoras), it is true, denies that this was the doctrine of
Pythagoras, and contends that it was only a corruption of his disciples. It is
an immaterial point. We know that the symbolism of numbers was the basis of
what is called the Pythagorean philosophy. But it would be wrong to suppose
that from it the Freemasons derived their system, since the two are in some
points antagonistic; the Freemasons, for instance, revere the nine as a sacred
number of peculiar significance, while the Pythagoreans looked upon it with
detestation. In the system of the Pythagoreans, ten was, of all numbers, the
most perfect, because it symbolizes the completion of things; but in Masonic
symbolism the number ten is unknown. Four is not, in Freemasonry, a number of
much representative importance; but it was sacredly revered by the
Pythagoreans as the Tetractys, or figure derived from the Jewish
Tetragrammaton, by which they swore.
Plato also indulged in a
theory of symbolic numbers and calls him happy who understands spiritual
numbers and perceives their mighty influences Numbers according to Plato, are
the cause of universal harmony and of the production of all things. The
Neoplatonists extended and developed this theory, and from them it passed over
to the Gnostics; from them probably to the Rosicrucians, to the Hermetic
philosophers and to the Freemasons.
Cornelius Agrippa has
descanted at great length in his Occult Philosophy, on the subject of numbers.
"That there lies," he says, "wonderful efficacy and virtue in numbers, as well
for good as for evil, not only the most eminent philosophers teach, but also
the Catholic Doctors." And he quotes Saint Hilary as saying that the seventy
Elders brought the Psalms into order by the efficacy of numbers.
Of the prevalence of what are
called representative numbers in the Old and New Testament, there is abundant
evidence. "However we may explain it," says Doctor Utahan (Palmoni, page 67),
"certain numerals in the Scriptures occur so often in connection with certain
classes of ideas, that we are naturally led to associate the one with the
other. This is more or less admitted with regard to the numbers Seven, Twelve,
Forty, Seventy, and it may be a few more. The Fathers were disposed to admit
it with regard to many others, and to see in it the merles of a supernatural
design." Among the Greeks and the Romans there was a superstitious veneration
for certain numbers. The same practice is found among all the Eastern
notionist entered more or less into all the ancient systems of philosophy;
constituted a part of all the old religions; was accepted to a great extent by
the early Christian Fathers; constituted an important part of the Cabala; was
adopted by the Gnostics, the Rosicrucians, and all the mystical societies of
the Middle Ages; and finally has carried its influence into Freemasonry.
The respect paid by Freemasons
to certain numbers all of which are odd. is founded not on the belief of any
magical virtue but because they are assumed to be the type or representatives
of certain ideas. That is to say, a number is in Freemasonry a symbol, and no
more. It is venerated, not because it has any supernatural efficacy, as
thought the Pythagoreans and others, but because it has concealed within some
allusion to a sacred object or holy thought, which it symbolizes. The number
three, for instance, like the triangle, is a symbol; the number nine, like the
triple triangle, another. The Masonic doctrine of sacred numbers must not,
therefore, be confounded with the doctrine of numbers which prevailed in other
systems. The most important symbolic or sacred numbers in Freemasonry are
three, five, seven, nine, twenty-seven and eighty-one. Their interpretation
will be found under their respective titles (see Odd Numbers). The subject is
also discussed in Doctor Mackey's revised History of Freemasonry; Numbers,
their Occult Power and Mystic Virtues, W. Wynn Westcott, Supreme Magus,
Rosicrucian Society of England; Numbers, their Meaning and Magic, Isidore
Kozminsky, and Rabala of Numbers, Sepharial.
Numerology is to arithmetic
what astrology is to astronomy. It is a form of occultism in which magical
properties are attributed to the natural numbers; and it is probable that it
has been more or less experimented with in Europe since the Thirteenth Century
Kabbalists introduced it into some of their most obscure pages it is reported
that at the present time the Kabbala and numerology are virtually synonymous
among Jewish Kabbalists in the Near East, of whom there are a few but who
carry little weight. It was the fashion for generations to father numerology
on Pythagoras; and in the small scraps of information about him available in
the periods before modern archeology there appeared to be ground for that
doctrine; but the theory is now abandoned; it is believed that what Pythagoras
discovered (as in harmonics) was the fact that numbers are not mere words,
mere subjective devices of men's minds, but are true objectively, and describe
properties which belong inherently to material things.
There is no evidence of any
infiltration of numerology into Freemasonry. The builders of the cathedrals
were too sound and intelligent in their knowledge of geometry, made too much
practical use of it, to give countenance to fuzzy, unreal, heterodox
occultists about numbers and geometrical figures professing magical powers.
They believed in no form of fortune-telling. Nor is there anywhere evidence
that Speculative Masons believed in it. The Monitorial Lectures of the Second
Degree in which the numbers 3, 5, 7 occur were either written or adopted by
William Preston, an orthodox Christian of the latter half of the Eighteenth
Century to whom any form of occultism would have been abhorrent. . so would it
have been to his predecessors, Drs. Desaguliers and James Anderson. (See
article in this Supplement on WAITE, ARTHUR EDWARD; he wrote much on the
subject, and out of a very wide knowledge.)
NUMERATION BY LETTERS
There is a Cabalistical
process especially used in the Hebrew language, but sometimes applied to other
languages, for instance, to the Greek, by which a mystical meaning of a word
is deduced from the numerical value of the words of which it is composed, each
letter of the alphabet being equivalent to a number. Thus in Hebrew the name
of God, Jah, is equivalent to 15, because = 10 and n = 5, and 15 thus becomes
a sacred number. In Greek, the Cabalistic word Abraxas, is made to symbolize
the solar year of 365 days, because the sum of the value of the letters of the
word is 365; thus, a=1 b=2, p=100, a=1, t=60, a=1, and s=200. To facilitate
these Cabalistic operations, which are sometimes used in the advanced Degrees
and especially the Hermetical Freemasonry, the numerical value of the Hebrew
and Greek letters is here given.
The word Gematrta means to
calculate by letters as well as numbers. While this was a late development
there are traces of it in the Old Testament in the opinion of W. H. Bennett (Hasting's
Dictionary of tile Bible). He says (page 660):
It consisted in the indicating
of a word by means of the number which would be obtained bs adding together
the numerical values of the consonants of the word. Thus in Genesis xiv, 14,
Abraham has 318 trained servants, 318 is the sum of the consonants of the name
of Abraham's Steward, Eliezer, in its original Hebrew form The number is
apparently constructed front the name. The Apocalyptic number of the Beast is
often explained by Gematria, and 666 has been discovered to be the sum of the
numerical values of the letters of some form or other of a large number of
names written either in Hebrew, or Greek, or Latin. Thus the Beast has been
identified with hundreds of persons, e.2. Mohammed Luther, the Pope, Napoleon
I, Napoleon III, ete., each of -whom was specially obnoxious to the ingenious
identifier. Probably by a little careful manipulation any name in some form or
other, in Hebrew, Greek, or Greek letters is here given. Latin could be made
by Gematria to yield 666. The two favorite explanations are Lateinos=Latinus,
the Roman Empire or Emperor, and Nero Caesar. The latter has the special
advantage that it recounts not only for 666, but also for the variant reading,
616, mentioned above; as Neron Caesar it gives 666, and as Nero Caesar, 616.
Much interesting reading on
the Number of the Beast is in the two volumes of a Budget of Paradozes
Augustus de Morgan. Both Bennett and Morgan agree, the latter being even less
impressed by the claims made by various compilers of these numerical values.
Brother Frank C. Higgins has devoted considerable study to the subject and
discussed it freely by articles in the New Age, American Freemason, etc., as
well as in such books as the Cross of the Magi, 1912.
The Hebrew word, meaning
abash, in Syrian an inkhorn. The Chaldaic and hieroglyphie form of this Hebrew
word or letter was like Figure 1, and the Egyptian like Figure 2, signifying
fishes in any of these forms. Joshua was the son of Nun, or a fish, the
deliverer of Israel. As narrated of the Noah in the Hindu account of the
Deluge, whereby the forewarning of a fish caused the construction of an ark
and the salvation of one family of the human race from the flood of waters
(see Beginnings of History, by Lenormant).
Nun is the fourteenth letter
of the Hebrew alphabet and so used in the ll9th Psalm to mean the fourteenth
part, every verse beginning with this letter.
A Portuguese founder of an
imitation of Knights Templar, termed the Order of Christ, at Paris, 1807.
The first of the three classes
into which Weishaupt divided his Order of Illuminati, comprising three Degrees
In this country of Central
Africa, there have been two Lodges, one at Blantyre and one at Zomba. Both
were chartered by the Grand Lodge of Scotland.
The name of the second of the
three great systems of ancient Hindu philosophy.
An ancient sect who praised
God by dav but rested in quiet and presumed security during the night.