Early German Milk Glass Flask

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This early German Milk Glass Flask is hand-pained with the Square and Compasses with the Letter "G" and a "Sprig of Acacia painted in the background.  The "Sprig of Acacia" is an interesting and important symbol in Freemasonry.   It is from whose wood the sanctuary of the tabernacle and the holy ark had been constructed would ever be viewed as sacred than ordinary trees.  The early Freemasons, therefore, very naturally appropriated this hallowed plant to the equally sacred purpose of a symbol, which was to teach an important divine truth in all ages to come.  The acacia, in the mystic system of Freemasonry, is pre-eminently the symbol of the IMMORTALITY OF THE SOUL -- that important doctrine which is the great design of the Institution to teach.  As the evenescent nature of the flower, which "cometh forth and is cut down," reminds us of the transitory nature of human life, so the perpetual renewal of the evergreen plant, which uninterruptedly presents the appearance of youth and vigor, is aptly compared to that spiritual life in which the soul, freed from the corruptible companionship of the body, shall enjoy an eternal spring and in immortal youth.   Hence, in the impressive funeral service of our Order, it is said that "this evergreen is an emblem of our faith in the immortality of the soul.  By this we are reminded that we have an immortal part within us, which shall survive the grave, and which shall never, never, never die."  And in the closing sentences of the monitorial lecture of the Third Degree, the same sentiment is repeated, and we are told that by, "the evergreen and ever-living emblem of immortality, the acacia" the Freemason is strengthened "with confidence and composure to look forward to a blessed immortality."  Hence, we see the propriety of placing the sprig of acacia, as an emblem of immortality, among the symbols of that degree, all of whose ceremonies are intended to teach us the great truth that "the life of man, regulated by morality, faith, and justice, will be rewarded at its closing hour by the prospect of Eternal Bliss"




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