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chapter II

the arcane schools
John Yarker

PHILOLOGISTS seem to be fast arriving at the view that when the whole earth was of "one language and of one speech" it was a primitive monosyllabic or Turanian tongue.  The word Turanian is most indefinite, for it is taken to include the small, dark, long-headed Dravidian race of India, which penetrated Britain before the Aryan Celt and of which the Basques of Spain are a survival; the long-headed white race of Scandinavian hunters; and the white, broad-headed Mongoloid, whom we chiefly term proto-Aryan, as an early branch of the Aryan race; a race which in prehistoric times spread from Lapland to Babylon, and from India to Egypt and Europe.

   The modern discoveries of archaeologists, in the countries occupied in remote times by this once powerful proto-Aryan race, have scarcely yet had time to filter down into the ordinary Masonic channels, but they must in course of time considerably modify the views of older writers upon our Masonic Mysteries.  It would seem from what can be gathered that we owe advanced building in stone and brick to this race, and the assimilation of their so-called Turanian speech is indicated by this, that, Monsieur Lenormant traces the remotely connected Proto-Median and Akkadian of Babylon to the Ugro-Altaic family of languages, traces the Aryan to the same Finnic race of the Ural mountains, and the anthropological evidence is as conclusive as the language of the Ugro-Altaic origin of the Aryan race.  It may have taken {20} tens of thousands of years for the development of the proto-Aryan into the Indo-Iranian tongue, Zend, Sanscrit, Pushtu, Baluchea, as well as the Aryo-European languages, including Greek, Latin, Sclavonic, Lettic, and Teutonic.  From it also sprang, at an earlier period, the Celtic of Europe, and from it, by a probable mixture with a black or Hamitic speech, the Semitic tongues spoken in Assyria, Phoenicia, Arabia, and Palestine.

   Even with the comparatively slight knowledge which we possess of the ancient Turanian and proto-Aryan speeches it may be taken for granted that a race which had founded a language which embraced certain roots equally found in Teutonic, Greek, Celtic, Semitic, and Sanscrit, and their cognate dialects, before separating into colonies, and which embraced terms in art, agriculture, jurisprudence, family life, religion, etc., had even then made progress in geometry, in the building of temples and houses, and architecture generally.  In this chapter, however, we are dealing more particularly with an earlier phase of culture, but it is necessary to say some little of Aryan advancement.

   A high state of civilisation was developed in the highlands of Europe and extended to other centres in Northern India which included Thibet.  The Indian Vedas assign the centre of their culture to the Himalayan source of the Ganges, "the abode of the Gods."  The Persian Avesta seems to point to the northern plateau of Pamir.  We have no certain information in regard to the departure of colonies from their parent home, but no doubt the causes were various.  The continuous increase of population would, of itself, make it a necessity.  The Zend Avesta attributes their departure from their original home to climatic changes: Ahriman, the evil spirit, who is mentioned both in the Avesta and the Vedas, introduced cold.  The nomadic habits of the people as breeders of cattle led them into Europe.  In the Himalayan centre or that of the Hindu, a war arose between those who had assumed divine powers in virtue {21} of their, orally acquired, knowledge of the sacred hymns, and the warrior or Maharajah class, who were subdued by a divine being who incarnated as Rama, upon which the priests allowed favourable terms and permitted the warriors to receive a limited amount of sacred knowledge, and to hear the Vedas, when collected in writing, read.  A previous incarnation is alleged for the benefit of the "monkey race," by which is perhaps meant some low-caste tribe, but that of Rama represents some prehistoric reformer of the Turanian culture, to whom a divine origin is assigned.

   At the period when the advance into India began, some 6,000 to 8,000 years ago, a race existed under the name of Tchandalas, probably partly Aryan, and partly Hamitic and other conquered Turanian races.  These migrated to other parts, and some are believed to have originated the Semitic tribes.  Such of the Tchandalas as remained were treated with the greatest barbarity by the Rishis or ancient Brahmin rulers, and were compelled to submit to a slavery which reads like that of the Hebrews in Egypt.<<"Mackenzie's Royal Masonic Cyclopaedia," also "Blavatsky's Secret Doctrine.">>  There were ex-Brahmins amongst them, and a caste system was established amongst the tribes which the Rishis did their best to suppress.

   It is not possible to give any reliable estimate of the centuries that elapsed before the reduction into writing of the ancient hymns, and the conversion of the rocks into temples of Cyclopian architecture.  The late Baron Bunsen deemed that the date 4,000 B.C. might be a very suitable era for what we may term the "manifestation of light," or the beginning of recorded history, and the desire to transmit the same upon monuments, in Egypt in hieroglyphics, in Chaldea upon slabs in the cunieform.  The Iran and the Hindu had developed the Avesta and the Vedas; the Babylonian an epic upon the journey of the sun through the signs of the Zodiac; the Egyptian the Book of the Dead, and the books of Hermes.  But the nomadic Aryans of Europe had not made the same {22} progress, the Celt was the most advanced but used bronze tools until about 2,000 B.C.  Hence the Esoteric claims deserve serious consideration.  Their earliest buildings are subterranean caves wrought with infinite labour and perseverance.  We should have liked to enlarge upon these wonderful cave temples wrought in solid rock but space forbids.  An interesting visit to some of these is recorded in the late H. P. Blavatsky's book entitled The Caves and Jungles of Hindustan.  That of Elephanta is a threefold construction, and it is alleged that all castes, and even kings wrought with the chisel in its construction.  Whilst the oldest cyclopean architecture is attributed in Europe to the Pelasgians, in India it is attributed to the Pandus who were a pre-Brahmin tribe, and Ferguson regards the analogy of this style with that of the Incas of Peru as one of the most remarkable facts of history.  It was in these prehistoric times that the symbols of the two creative forces of nature developed, represented by crux-ansata, lithoi, or lingam, and the vesica piscis, or yoni.  They are equally the signs of a dogma which lay at the root of all religions in regard to fire, not the fire burning upon the altar, but the fire which that symbolised and was termed "divine darkness," a spiritual or magical fire, seen by gifted seers, of which the earthly symbols are the pyramids, the obelisk, and the church spires.<<"The Rosicrucians," Jennings.>>

   The oldest of the Turanian, or proto-Aryan, races had an organised priesthood of three grades, as in that of the Art school.  It is true that we cannot now give proof that such a system is as ancient as humanity, but we may accept its extreme antiquity from the fact that in the most ancient historic times there was a widespread system of three degrees of Theosophy amongst people hopelessly separated.

   The Finlanders from the most ancient times to the present day have had a magical system of three grades which are termed Tietajat (learned), Asaajat (intelligent), {23} and Laulajat (incantators).  The Babylonian Chasdim were termed Khartumim (conjurors), Chakamim (physicians), and Asaphim (theosophists).<<"Chaldean Magic," by Lenormant.>>

   There yet exist in India certain Kolarian and Dravidian tribes who possess a magical system similar to that of the Finnic and Babylonian races, and they practise a system of secret initiation which they claim has descended to them from a time more ancient than the invasion of their plateau in central India by the Aryans, a conquest occurring thousands of years ago, but we purposely abstain from following European dates as they are altogether unreliable.  Their grades are Najo (witches and wizards), Deoni or Mati (wizards), and Bhagat (diviner).  It is said that in the grade of Bhagat the Master priest goes through a part of the initiation alone with the aspirant, and that the ceremony is completed at night time with a corpse, near to some water.  Amongst these tribes are the Gonds, sprung from Dravidians, who in early times reached a high degree of culture; in Chanda are the ruins of a palace and town with a perfect network of underground passages, which have never been explored by Europeans, and which, tradition states, lead to a series of halls where secret conclaves were formerly held.<<"The Kneph," v, p. 40 See also Mr. E. D. Ewen's paper (who resided several years amongst these people) in "Five Years of Theosophy.">>  Mr. James Ferguson, F.R.S., in a lecture read before the Bengal Institute of this country maintains that the original occupiers of India were a Turanian race of builders who were tree and serpent worshippers, and that the Pelasgian inhabitants of Greece possessed the same features, in each case before the Aryan invasions and conquest of these countries.  The full comprehension of this is the key to much that is puzzling in the transmission of Masonry and the Mysteries.  There are important distinctions between the Hindus and these aboriginal hill-tribes; the latter have no caste divisions, they eat flesh food and offer live victims in sacrifice to their {24} gods; and are essentially either of a Mongolian or Turanian type, like the Burmese and Japanese.

   The Median Magi, or sacerdotal class of the proto-Medes were originally a so-called Turanian priesthood.  But at some remote period there arose in the region north of Bactria a monotheistic reformer whom his followers termed Zaradust, the first of the name, and who is probably the same prophet whom the Hindus term Parusha-Rama, and it is this reformed Median civilisation which constituted the religion of the most ancient Babylonians; and of the somewhat more modern Persians.  It is clear that the race worked metals and built in brick and stone from their earliest migrations.  In the time of Cyrus I. these Magi consisted of three classes, thus named by the learned German scholar Heeren -- Harbed, or disciple; Mobed, or master; Destur-Mobed, or complete Master.  These constituted a sacerdotal College over which presided a Rab-Mag, or chief magian.  The word Magi, or Mahaji in Sanscrit, means great or wise.  Their distinguishing attributes were the Costi or girdle; the Havan, or sacred cup; and the Barsom, or bundle of twigs grasped in the hand; a symbol not properly understood but supposed to represent staves that were employed in divination, but it is much more probable that it was a symbol of that union which was to give strength to their order.  The cubical dice were said to be used by them for divinatory purposes.  Aristotle asserts that this Magian pontificate was more ancient than the foundation of Egypt; and Plato, who had an exalted opinion of the purity of its doctrines, confirms this antiquity. Hermeppius says that the primitive Zoroaster was initiated by one Azanaces 5,000 years before the Trojan war, or, as is supposed, 8,168 years ago; Endoxes says that he lived 6,000 years before the death of Plato, or 8,237 years ago.  In its proper place we will take the rites of the Aryan Mysteries of Mythras.  Heckethorn asserts that the Indian Gymnosophists were the disciples of the early Magi, and that these Magi had {25} put forth 5,000 years before the Iliad was written the three grand poems of the Zend Avesta, the first ethical; the second military; and the third scientific.  They taught the duality of nature as exemplified in light and darkness, heat and cold, summer and winter, good and evil, of which two principles, in the revolving cycles, the good would become paramount.

   Ernest de Bunsen says that it is proved that the three grades of the Jewish Rabbinical school are an exact parallel of the three grades of the Magi; that it was a secret school of Scribes, its highest teaching embracing the doctrine of the indwelling Holy Spirit in man, and that Jesus was a Rabboni.  The Babylonian Rabu corresponding with the Hebrew Rab, the Mobed with the Rabbi, and the Destur Mobed with the Rabban or Rabboni.  The Persian Mazda is equally styled Ahmi yat Ahmi -- I am that I am.<<"Miscell. N. & Q." (Gould, 1894), xii, p. 304.>>

   The British or Celtic Druids were a priesthood that had features common to the Eastern Magi, and were divided into three classes denominated Bards, Ovates, and Druids.  Michaelet says that it is wonderful the analogy which the names of the gods of Ireland -- Axire, Axceavis, Coismaoil, Cabir, bear to the Cabiri.<<"Freemasons' Mag.," 1860, i, p. 166.>>  The evidence of Strabo is to the same effect, as he says that the British Druids practise the same religious rites as existed at Samothrace.  They cause their ancient progenitor to exclaim: "I am a Druid, I am an architect, I am a prophet, I am a serpent."  We shall see that the Cabiric Rites were the prerogative of priests and architects, embodying the drama of a murdered god.  There can be small doubt that the Irish legend of Gobham-Saer, the son of Turibi of the Strand, who was murdered with his 12 companions by 12 robbers, is a vulgarised exoteric reference to the murdered Cabir and the 12 signs of the Zodiac.  O'Brien says that he was a Guabhres or Cabiri, and that Saer has the signification of son of God.  He advocates in his {26} Round Towers the Phoenician origin of these buildings with their appropriation by later Christian Monks; often, as at Glendalough, seven small chapels, or altars, are attached.  It is possible, as has been maintained, that north Europe was the centre whence the Orientals derived their legends, and that Chaldean, whence Culdeean, was as appropriate to the Druids as to the Babylonian, and that as the Essenians were Babylonians, the Culdees were Essenes, as held by the venerable Bede, and thus the Essenes, or Assidiana, were Culdees.

   The chief British gods were Hu and Ceridwen, or the Ouranos and Ghe of the Cabiri; and it is worthy of mention that there are Druidical unhewn stones and temples in cruciform, the one in the island of Lewes consists of 12 stones each limb having three, and the subterranean of New Grange in Ireland is also cruciform.  Higgins in his Celtic Druids, mentions in Scotland as prechristian, a crucifix on one side of which is a lamb, and on the other an elephant.

   There is nothing very remarkable in the prechristian existence of such cruciform structures, in Italy it predates architecture, and the Rev. Baring Gould points out that there are in South Italy lake-dwellings of an immense antiquity where the cross-form is of greater antiquity than the bronze age.  The cyclopean temple at Gazzo is built on the basis of a Latin cross, and hence it was a religious emblem of the Cabiri.  It is found in India in the most ancient cave of Elephanta, and is equally an emblem in central America.  There are also two prechristian caves in Ireland of this form.<<See "Freemasons' Magazine," 1857. p. 276.>>  We mentioned its use by the Maori race.

   Toland points out that the three divisions of the Druidical system which we have mentioned must not be taken as progressional degrees.  They were three classes corresponding to Soothsayers, Physicians, and Prophets.  The last, or the Druid class, had four degrees conferred at intervals of 3, 6, and 9 years.  The Bards and Ovates {27} were each divided into three classes with special functions.<<"Toland," quoting Jones.>>  Taliesin as an initiate exclaims -- "Thrice was I born, now I know how to acquire all knowledge by meditation."  The emblem of the Druid was a vitrified egg, chased in gold, and hung from the neck, and which held up to the light shewed a sacred token; the "Serpents," or Druids, prepared it.

   It is generally accepted that the theology of these sacred Colleges, even in the most ancient times, taught the existence of one sole power or creator of the visible universe, though triplicated in His manifestations, and that from Him proceeded the minor gods, angels, and demi-gods.  He, the one, was Dyaus in Sanscrit, Zeus in Greek, Tiu in Teutonic, the ancient inscriptions and books of the Egyptians place it beyond doubt; the Chinese, the Magi, Hindus, Hebrews, etc., all add confirmation, and various other proofs are adduced in the work entitled Natural and Revealed Religion of our brother the Chevalier Ramsay.  It is immaterial by what name the prophet, or outteller, who revealed this doctrine whether Taut, Fohi; Zaradust, Rama; Enoch or Edris whose pupil Abram, or great-father, was; the doctrine of one God, uncreated, incorporeal, all-seeing, all-powerful, everywhere present, and dwelling incomprehensibly in his own unity, gleams out through the darkness of the ages.  And though the doctrine admits of minor deities as agents of the Supreme the dogma of unity formed the background of all the ancient religious Mysteries, coupled with that of divine incarnations, and that indwelling holy spirit in men, which makes him equal with the minor gods.

   The examples which we have given of an arcane society divided into degrees, so widely separated by locality, by language, and by manners, from data existing some thousands of years ago, unmistakably point to a much more ancient derivation from a common centre, unless we admit an intuitive need for some such system.  We {28} find equally the same widespread distribution of geometrical symbols intended to typify Theosophical truths, and embracing cosmogony and creation.  It is held that each symbol represented a letter, a colour, a number and a sound, thus constituting an esoteric hieroglyphic understood by the Initiates of every country.  As an example we might easily arrange a set of very ancient symbols forming little understood Masonic emblems, and equally carved by operative masons on the ancient ruins of Asia, India, and Egypt, and these might again be applied on the plan of the old Philosophers to the recondite mysteries of nature.  Take the following as numerals


In mystic crosses of equal antiquity with all our other emblems we find the following forms, namely,


each having special application to a dogma.

   We have already made slight allusion to the Cabiri, and all authorities are agreed that the Mysteries practised under this name were allied with the Cyclopean Masonry and its builders, and that those Rites and Buildings, in all countries, were the religion and architecture of a primitive race which preceded the Aryan invasions of Media, Babylon, India, Greece, and Egypt.  The primitive inhabitants of Babylon, whom it has been agreed to term Akkadian, were more nearly allied in blood, language, and religion, with the Finlanders, Mongolians, early Egyptians, proto-Medes, Pelasgi, Etruscans, perhaps also American Indians, all so-called Turanian, than they were with the Elamites, Ethiopians, Arabians, and other Semites, or with the Hindu, Persian, and other Aryan races, that appear later on in the pages of resuscitated history.  Yet there are actual traces of speculative Freemasonry, intimately allied with the religious Mysteries, amongst these primitive proto-Aryans.  A clear explanation of these particulars does not admit of being printed, but every intelligent Free-Mason will be able to read, {29} what we may write, between the lines, and thus supply for himself what we may leave unexplained.

   Recent discoveries go to prove that Palestine had its Cabiric or Magian Rites, and that long before the invasion of the "brigand Joshua," the son of Nun, as an old inscription is said to term that scriptural warrior, Akkadian civilisation existed in Syria, and the legendary Cain, Abel, and Seth of Genesis, and their progeny, find their analogies in other of the religious Mysteries.  But the Talmud or Mishna, which is a very ancient explanation of the Law, differs materially from "Genesis;" thus it is said that in the days of Cain's son Enoch, and in the days of Seth's son Enosh, the people made images of copper and wood to worship, and it is to Keenan the son of Enosh that the Talmud attributes the prophecies of the destruction of the world, which he wrote upon tablets of stone.  Enoch is represented as a Hermit, and the word implies Initiation.  Lamech when blind by age is said to shoot his progenitor Cain by the accident of an arrow, and further, in his grief, kills by accident his own son.  Hence the traditional Lament of Lamech in Genesis which has been supposed to be a veiled confession of Initiation.  The scriptural Tubal-Cain who was son of Lamech by the daughter of the Sethite Keenan seems to be equally a Cabiric legend in the Crysor of Sanconiathon the Phoenician historian, who is supposed to have lived as a contemporary of King Solomon.  Equally Tubal-Cain, and Crysor, is the Vulcan of Greek mythology.  Sanconiathon says of this Crysor: -- "Men worshipped him as a god after his death and they called him Diamachius, or the great inventor, and some say his brother invented the making of walls and bricks.  After these things, of his race were born two young men, one of whom was called Technites or the artist, the other Geinos Autochthon or earth born, or generated from the earth itself.  These men found out to mix stubble with the brick earth, and to dry the bricks so made in the sun."<<Cory's "Ancient Fragments," 1876, p. 8.>>  {30} Sanconiathon further states that Upsistos was deified after he had been torn in pieces by wild-beasts, and that he was the father of Ouranos who invented sculpture, and of Tautus who invented hieroglyphics, and represented the constellations by pictures; he says also that in the third generation two Pillars were erected which were dedicated to Fire and Wind.

   According to F. von Schlegel there exists a tribe in Eastern Asia, in the mountains, that possesses an inverted history resembling the Cain and Abel legend, but with these people it is the youngest brother who out of envy at the success of his elder brother, in mining for gold and silver, drives him out of the fatherland into the East.  This writer, in his Philosophy of History thinks that the wars of races, the giants and the Titans, may be traced in the Biblical legends, and he is inclined to identify the holy Sethite race with the seven holy Rishis of Brahminical tradition.  He also supposes that the confession of Lamech may hint at the beginning of human sacrifice.  As Cain's offering was the fruits of the earth, animal life ought to have been as sacred to him as to the Budists.  As Cain was the eldest son Schlegel's view would make him the prototype of the Turanians, whilst Seth would represent the prehistoric Aryan; and these races the Talmud would again reunite in the posterity of Lamech, which does actually point to the union of religion and art.

   As a matter of fact the Babylonian, Phoenician, and Jewish legends of the invention of the arts can only be looked upon as an attempt to explain the remote origin of these, something invented to please the curious, and to point out the early period at which these were supposed to have successively originated; the Persians have similar legends applied to their own people.  But we are not without some proof to shew that an esoteric Masonic system was known to these early races, from which proceeded the "hundred families" that founded the Chinese culture.  Owing to the researches of Professors de Lacomperie, {31} Douglas, and Ball, it has been established that the Bak tribes, which entered China about 4,000 years ago, had the archaic cuneiform character, and the customs of the tribes of Elam and Chaldea, which alone is sufficient to establish a community of race.  The Yh-King, or Book of Changes, in its original form was about a sixth of its present extent and termed the Ku-wen, and is a vocabulary of the primitive cuneiform thus uniting with the other countries which used it.  There can be no doubt that the primitive Mysteries were held in Groves, and that the Initiates, as in the Druidical Rites, were received "in the eye of day," the trials being rather moral than physical, the latter being a later stage, when the schools had somewhat degenerated, and temples specially adapted for the physical proofs began to be built.

   Before we enter upon the nature of the CABIRIC MYSTERIES, and the Architecture termed CYCLOPEAN, we will endeavour to prove that in the most ancient times there was in existence an actual Society such as we now term Freemasonry.  We will take first the Chinese, who are the most primitive of civilised races, and still retain their monosyllabic language, represented by hieroglyphics of which each is the picture of a root-word, of such value that the characteristic meaning is understood throughout the Empire, even where the spoken language is mutually unintelligible.  It is a culture concreted thousands of years ago amongst a race closely allied in language, religion, mythology, and astronomy with Akkadian Babylon.  Moreover the archaic tablets of Thibet have mystical allusions in consonance with the Mysteries, but we will allude to these in a later chapter.

   There occurred in the year 1879 in the District Grand Lodge of China a discussion upon the subject we have mentioned above, from which we learn that about 4,000 years ago this people had a symbolism identical with the Masonic Craft.  An altar in form of a perfect cube was used to typify the earth, and this may be read in conjunction with what we wrote in our last chapter on the Maori {32} rites, the circle being an emblem of heaven, and earth and heaven in union were Cabiric deities.  The N.E. and S.E. are relatively used to imply the beginning and conclusion of an object in view.  One of the oldest words in the language is literally "square and compasses" and signifies right conduct.  The skirret as an hieroglyphic signifies the origin of things.  When the Emperor of a new dynasty succeeded he began the erection of a new temple under the oversight of a Grand Architect.  Aprons were used which bore emblems denoting religious office -- there is a plant, an axe, and another not clear.  The Shu-King, which is one of the oldest books in the language, gives the representation of two jewels in jadestone, which is one of the hardest and most valuable of all stones and the most difficult to work; these two are the square and the plumb-rule.  The same book speaks of Chien jen, magistrates, which is literally "level men," implying what is expected of them; and the three chief officers of State are called the San chai, the three houses or builders; and one of the most ancient names of deity is the "First Builder."  The Emperor Shun, about 3,000 years ago, had amongst his attributes the circle and rule; and the hammer in the hands of their kings was an emblem of authority.  When a monarch died the emblems of authority were returned for the purpose of reinvestiture.<<The "Masonic Magazine" (Kenning).>>  In Masonry this is done on election of a new Master.

   We learn from the Book of Odes that when an Emperor sacrificed he divested himself of his Imperial robes, was barefooted and bareheaded and girt with a lambskin.  At the spring festival, which has much in common with the rites of the Grecian Ceres, we see following the procession a boy with one foot bare and the other shod, but which they apply to the yang and yin, or the positive and negative principles of nature.  Brother Chaloner Alabaster, from whom we copy some of these illustrations, says that this building symbolism was continued by the Chinese philosophers of the 5th century B.C.  Thus we {33} read in the Great Learning that "a man should abstain from doing unto others what he would not they should do unto him"; and the writer adds, "this is called the principle of acting on the square."  Other similar expressions are used by Confucius 481 B.C.; and his later follower Mencius says, "that a Master Mason, in teaching his apprentices, makes use of the compasses and square; ye who are engaged in the pursuit of wisdom must also make use of the compasses and square."<<"Ars Quat. Cor.", ii, p. 12O, and iii, p. 14.>>  Every trade in Japan has a Guild, and they are said to have been derived from China, by way of Korea, 3,000 years ago.

   At the present time we are not thoroughly informed whether a system identical in all respects with that of China existed in Babylon, but there are indications that such was the case, as well as in Egypt, and we have already pointed out that Yh-King is an Akkadian vocabulary of root-words.  Mr. St. Chad Boscawen has afforded us a note, where he treats of the ancient Calneh, about 3,800 B.C.<<"Modern Thought," 1883.>>; in this article he represents the Viceroy Gudea as Patesi, or sceptre-bearer, subservient to the King of Erech, and terms him the chief priest and architect as well, his palace indicating the art influence of Egypt.  His statue represents him as seated and having the right arm and shoulder bare; on his knees is a tablet containing a plan, or what Modern Masons term a Tracing-board, of his palace or temple; the edge of this tablet is divided into a scale of 20 3/10 inches to the cubit, a measure corresponding with that used in Egypt.  Brother W. H. Rylands deems that this cubit may have divided the plan into chequered squares though not shewn thereon.  Pure copper images of the Cabiri have been disinterred at Calneh.

   Very strong philological grounds have been shewn by Dr. Miller in his Har-moad for identifying the Chinese Masonic system with Babylon, and this must be read in the light of the remarks we have made thereon.  {34}

   One of the earliest Akkadian Kings named Lik-baga was a pyramid builder and, like Melchisedek, a king and priest of the Most High; he uses as a title the term Pa-teshi, which is thus literally translated Pa -- anoint, te -- corner stone, shi -- to strike; and the same term is used by his successors.  Patassó is a hammer, and the term Patoeci was the habitual designation of the images of the gods of the Cabiric Mysteries.  Lik-baga seems to have modified Akkadian theology and was the crowned architect and apostle of Sin (moon), Samas (sun), Bel, and Anu.  Another term used by these kings, and applied by Nebuchadnezzar to the most ancient kings, is Pa-teshi tsi-ri, which is translated Sublime Master by Dr. Schrader; it is connected with the Hebrew Pat-tish, a hammer, or the Cabiric hammer in the hand of Tubal-Cain or the Greek Vulcan.  With the Akkadians the god of copper-smiths had the same name as the god of ironworkers amongst the Laplanders, and the words for iron and copper are the same respectively.<<"Chaldean Magic" -- Lenormant.>>  It is, however, through the Aryan Sanskrit that we can more particularly trace the assimilation of Akkad to a building fraternity, for the word Ak means to pierce, Akra is a sharp point, Akri is corner, Akana is a stone, Aktan is the number eight or the angles which are in a cube.  Akman in Sanscrit is a stone and in Persian heaven, and as a cube symbolises the eight cosmogonical powers, the word comes to imply the whole heavens.  In Greek, which is an Aryan tongue, the name of the father of Ouranos is Akmon, and Diodorus makes Ur, or Ouranos and Ops children of Akmon and parents of the Titans, who are again the Cabiri.  Akmon is also an anvil, which means a meteorolite, from which iron was first made, for in Greek Sideros is iron and related to the Latin Sidus, a star.  The word Ak in the Akkadian signifies to build or to make, hence we have ta-ak, tak, tag, a stone or mountain, and akka, a building temple or sanctuary; these significations further connect Akkad, or proto-Aryan, with the Hindus and their architecture. {35}  Ak is also the monogram of Nabu who is Mercury, Marduk, whence Nimrod; Nabu is therefore Mercury, and the Hermes of Egypt, the revealing God.  In Semitic Assyrian abn is stone, abni stones, banah (Heb. benah) is to build.  The learned Alexander Wilder<<Gould's "N. & Q.", xiii, p. 296.>> expresses an opinion that Nimrod, founder of Babylon, was of Tartar descent, in which language the word means "spotted," and may point to the leopard skin in which the Assyrian priests of Dionnisi were clothed.  If Nimrod personates Kronos, as some hold, he was in that case a Cabiri or king of the race of Cyclopean builders.

   From all this it is argued, with much soundness, that the first kings were both priests and architects, or the Grand Masters of these, and of the class of Cabiri who were first workers in stone and brick, and afterwards in metals, and that they transmitted a traditional doctrine of the temple, based upon cosmogony and the creation of the world.<<"Ars Quat. Cor.," v, pt. 2.>>  It explains why Genesis assimilates the worldly arts with religion, and shews the high respect the Hebrew priests had for art, though deficient in practice.  The Babylonians must have afforded information to Ezra who revised the Jewish Bible, and it may be pointed out that these people were builders in brick rather than stone, and hence that the practice of art would vary in a country with that in which stone was used.


   When we approach historic times we find that the actual Cabiric Mysteries were of Grecian continuation and perpetuated at Samothrace where they had been in existence, from a remote era, far into Christian times, and where they were held in great veneration, not only for their antiquity but for the purity of their doctrine.  They are said to have retained much of their technique in the Chaldean language, and to have preserved much of the Masonic symbolism which we have seen in Chinese practise, {36} for the aboriginal inhabitants of Greece, Pelasgians, were an allied race, and Dr. Petrie asserts that pre-Hellenic, or pre-Aryan Greeks, were in Egypt, either as friends or captives, 2,500 B.C., with a civilisation all their own.  Barbarous wars arose, the Aryan Hellenes devastated the country, and during an era of oppression reduced the old inhabitants to subjection; we find them denominated Pelasgi with a succession of 26 kings followed by 7 priests.  Egypt eventually sent them rulers who restored their country to prosperity, founded cities and gave them laws.  Upon this we learn that the Cabiric Mysteries were in practice at Samothrace, and that they were, or had been, a fraternity which combined art with religion.  Herodotus says that Samothrace had these Mysteries from the Pelasgi, and that they taught the initiated by a sacred tradition, why the figure of Hermes, Mercury, or Casmillus was constructed in a peculiar manner, from which we gather that they used Phallic symbols as emblems of the generative powers of nature; and this historian, who wrote 450 B.C., tells us that the names of their gods were derived from Egypt, as anciently they used the general term "Disposers."

   The views of all authorities are in unison with those of Frederick von Schlegel, who says that this primitive people were the constructors of the Cyclopean buildings of Greece and Italy, being the original inhabitants who were conquered and overrun by the Aryan immigration of Deucalion, that they were a people who had the traits in common with those of many other countries, at a remote period.<<"Philosophy of History," p. 234.>>

    Before we consider their Mysteries we will say something of their architecture; a style which is of prehistoric antiquity.  It was very massive, and built of irregular and well-bound blocks of immense size, so well knit that though without cement a knife blade would not enter the joints, and so placed that a large block might be withdrawn without endangering the structure.  The French {37} Institute, in 1804, traced about 150 towns which were in part, at least, Cyclopean, and 127 of these were in Europe.  Strabo says that the builders were from Syria in Asia Minor, by which he means Assyria; the same writer mentions vast caverns in Argos which had been converted into a Labyrinth by the Cyclops; and here was a statue of the father of the gods, which had a third eye in the middle of the forehead, and which was said to have been brought from the palace of Priam at Troy, an Asiatic city intimately connected with Assyria.

   Pliny states that in the island of Lemnos, the home of the Cabiric Mysteries, there was a Labyrinth of 150 columns, each stone of which might be moved by a child; hence we learn that they resembled the rocking stones of the Druids; and Dr. Daniel Clarke found a stone circle at the top of Mount Gargarus, where the gods, according to Homer, assembled at the siege of Troy.<<"Anacalypsis.">>  Pliny attributes the working of iron to their invention, and the first inhabitants of Sicily are said to be of this race.  Achilles Statius, bishop of Alexandria, mentions a statue in a temple on Mount Cassius, between Syria and Egypt, which held a pomegranate in the hand; it is a temple which Sanconiathon deems to have been built by the descendants of the Cabiri.<<Mackey's "Cyclo. Art. Pomegranate.">>

   This peculiar Masonry is found upon the summits of mountains, a position in which Homer places the Cyclops and the Lastragons, and Theocritus the establishments of the old Pelasgi.  As it demanded a large exertion of physical strength the later, but still ancient, Greeks attributed the work to giants who had an eye in the middle of the forehead as had Priam's statue of their deity.  Mythology makes them sons of Neptune and Amphitrite, whom Jupiter overthrew and cast into Tartarus where they become the assistants of Vulcan; thus assigning a sea-pedigree to these workers in iron and stone, and typifying an enforced slavery by their {38} Aryan conquerors.  They are fabled to have made the sickle of the Greek Kronos or Saturn, whom the Latins made the god of agriculture, in whose reign a ship grounded at Samothrace, where the passengers settled and erected a temple for their Mysteries.  It is further pretended that these Cyclops constructed for Jupiter a cubical altar of brass upon which the father of gods took his oath before attacking the Titans, and upon this altar was engraved the name of Deity.  Three principal Cyclops are mentioned -- Brontes, Steropes, and Paracmai.  We see that like Hiram, who has credit for building the temple of Solomon, the Cyclopean Cabiri were not only skilled builders in stone but workers in brass and iron, a race subject to Vulcan, and that all this long preceded the introduction into Greece of a Masonry of flat and squared stones, which came into use about the time of the Egyptian colonisation, after the ages of barbarism occasioned by the Aryan wars.

   Besides India, which we have mentioned in its cave temples, and Greece, other nations have this ancient style of Masonry, and Syria, under Babylonian influence, has many traces of it, older than the invasion of Joshua and the Abri, and it is quite possible that the Hebrew invaders had much of their special bias from the school of Melchisedek, King of Salem.

   It has been shewn by Monsieur Perotti that some of the most ancient ruins in Palestine are Cyclopean, or as he terms them Pelasgian, and he instances some at Ephrata or Zelzah, in other places are later ruins of a mixed style, built compositely of polygonal and squared blocks; at Rama is a doorway resembling, on a small scale that of Atreus at Mycenae;<<"Freemasons' Mag.," 1862, viii, p. 384.>> Cyclopean ruins exist also at Bashan and Baalbec.  The Rev. Brother Fosbrooke says: "The abacus of the gate of lions at Mycenae, which was built by the Cyclops, supports four balls or circles, which are again surrounded by a second abacus, similar to the first.  They are supposed to be {39} derived from the worship of Mythras, the lion being his symbol.  The triangular form of the stone had a special signification.  The Cyclops were worshippers of fire, Vulcan, and the sun."

   Older and still more important than Mycenae is the recent discovery in Crete of the palace of Minos at Knossos, with its works of art, and its Dedalian labyrinth of passages and rooms, but more remarkable still tablets and records partly in hieroglyphics, and partly in alphabet.

   In an article in the Builder in 1865, Monsieur Renan states that this style is the most ancient in the world, except it be the Pyramids, and he points out that Homer mentions the great strength of the walls of Tiryns and Mycenae in Argolis, the former of which is said to be 20 feet thick: the Etruscan style, he says, is derived from it, but when it had made a decided advance, as it indicates improved architectural knowledge.  He also points out that wherever this Masonry is found there exists a tradition of an ancient race of giants, who have passed away or been destroyed, and he attributes the remains of this style in Palestine to the Anakim, Rephaim, and the Canaanitish tribes.<<Ibid, 1865, xii, p. 146.>>

   Britain.  The Cyclopean architecture of the British isles is prominent and may range from 4,500 to 1,500 years antiquity,<<WEH NOTE: Carbon dated in modern times to be up to 8,000 years old as to wooden precursors.>> and are well described by Toland as they existed 200 years ago.  Numerous circles of stone were dedicated to the sun: that in the isle of Lewes has 12 obelisks and a 13th in the centre representing the rudder of a ship, and reached by a passage of double obelisks each of 19 stones with a 39th guarding the entrance of the avenue.  We have here the 12 signs of the Zodiac, the Sun, and the Druid cycle of 19 years.  At St. Burien in Cornwall is a temple of 19 stones, each 12 feet distant, and a 20th of greater height in the centre, this may refer to the 19 years cycle of 12 months.  In these temples a large altar was erected near which stood {40} the Cruimthear or priest, and adjacent are found prodigious stones which can be moved by a touch at the right place, whilst elsewhere they resist all the strength of man.  Toland mentions one of these Cromleachs at Cruich, in Cavan, placed in the midst of 12 obelisks, covered with brass, on which stood statues of the gods, whilst the bowing-stone was covered with gold and silver.

   The Circles of Stonehenge are 3,600 years old, according to the calculation of Professor Norman Lockyer, founded upon its orientation as a Sun-temple 1680 years B.C.  This calculation is confirmed by the discovery in 1901, when making some repairs of the chippings from the two descriptions of stones, of which the two circles are composed, together with rude flint axes and hammers of the pre-bronze age, "i.e.", 1500 to 2000 B.C.

   In the face of the varied authorities we have quoted it is not possible to come to any other conclusion than that the Cyclops were the primitive builders and workers in metals, and that their descendants the Cabiri were until we approach Christian times a religious and operative brotherhood which then became entirely speculative.  There is a mythological groundwork for the assimilation of the various nations that practised the Cyclopean style.  Plutarch quotes Anticlides as affirming that Isis was the daughter of Prometheus, who as a revelator of arts was a Cabir, and wife to Dionysos or Bacchus, and Dionysius Halicarnassus says that Atlas left his habitation on Mount Caucasus and became King of Arcadia.  Apollodorus affirms that this Atlas was son of Japhetus and brother to Prometheus.  Pausanius informs us that the Arcadians were all Pelasgi, as were also the inhabitants of Argos, and that the Pelasgians had that name from a King Palagius.<<Bishop Cumberland; "Origenes.">>  Dionisu is Assyrian, and also Indian as Dionysos, whilst admittedly Egyptian as Bacchus; hence the Dionysian artificers of Greece may have sprang out of the Cabiri.  Raol Rochette considers that the Cyclop Palaemonius, to whom a Sanctuary was raised, was {41} the Tyrians Heracles.  H. P. Blavatsky says that the -builders of the sacred columns at Gadir covered them with mysterious characters and figures, of which the same is still found on the walls of Ellora, that gigantic ruin of the temple of Visvakarman styled "the builder and artificer of the gods."  It is quite likely that the physical and superior strength of the Cyclops has a foundation in fact.  Apart from the testimony of ancient writers, collected by men of the stamp of Grotius, in regard to the existence at one time of a race of giants, there has recently been discovered at Piedmont in Moravia the skeleton of a human family, side by side with the bones of the Mammoth, that of the man being of "extraordinary size."  At the Grotto of Rochers Rouges, Mentone, skeletons have been found under 29 feet of limestone stalagmite, which may be reckoned to represent 8,000 years, that of a male was 7ft. 9in. without head, and that of a female 6ft. 3in.

   Cabiric Mysteries.  In order to arrive at an idea of the Cabiric Mysteries and their several great gods, or powers, we must recognise their antiquity, and the fact that their chief constellation was the Great Bear, the seven stars.  Of the Pleiades a seventh star is said to be lost, "the six present the seventh hidden."  We must also consider the most striking facts of nature, which led to the division of time into days, months, and years.  The first measure of time is a contest between light and darkness, a day and a night, or what is now known to be a revolution of the earth round the sun.  The next measure of time was the birth and death of the moon, or what we know as a monthly revolution of the moon round the earth.  It would next be noted that the seven stars of the Great Bear makes a complete turn round in 365 days or thereabouts.  The 13 lunar and 12 solar months in the annual birth and death of the sun is a later and more complicated calculation of a year, though it corresponds with the annual revolution of the seven stars round a polar centre, which was what the Cabiri plainly commemorated.  {42}

   The Sun was the Semitic, rather than the Cabiric symbol, and may possibly be indicated in the archaic hymn of the Akkadian victory of Hea over the seven-headed serpent.  Other changes of the symbolism succeeded and we have the seven gods applied to so many spheres, or to the planets, and finally anthropomorphised into seven gods of arts.  We read<<II "Kings" xvii., v. 30.>> "The men Of Babylon made Succoth Benoth," which is understood to be the image worship of the Pleiades.  The late Doctor Walker Arnott asserted that none could comprehend Masonic ritual without a full knowledge of Hebrew astronomy.  These considerations tend to prove the greater antiquity of the Cabiric system, as preceding the Mysteries that made a dying god of our solar orb; and it has also a higher scientific basis, as implying the origin of systems from that far distant central sun, round which all the globes revolve.  It is on these natural phenomena, spiritualized in the Mysteries, that their ceremonies are founded.  Apollodorus and Varro say that the Cabiri adored the heavens and earth under the names of Ouranos and Ghe as the creators of mankind: Hindu spirit and matter.

   According to Sanconiathon and the Phoenicians, the Cabiri were the eight sons of Sadyk, of whom the youngest, named Eshmun or Akmon, or in the Greek version Cadmillus or Casmillus, was slain by the others.  Misor, the brother of Sadyk, was father of Taut, and received the inheritance of Egypt, and the Cabiri record it, a claim that the most ancient inhabitants of Egypt were of this ritual.  Of these eight, three were most noted, and were termed by the Greeks Axieros, Axiochersos, and Axiocheres, and as "xi" is but the Greek "chi" it has been suggested<<Dr. Tytler, in "F.M. Mag.">> that these names may be transmuted into Chaldean as Ahea, Ashur, Ahea, which is equal to I am that I am.  Mr. Edward C. King<<"Akkadian Genesis," p. 59; "Exodus" iii. v. I4; Ahih Ashr Ahih.>> reads these words Aya, Asher, Aya, and {43} when Theodoret asked a Jew the true pronunciation of the sacred name , the Jew said "ya," and wrote "aya," for he was not permitted by his law to pronounce the sacred name.  Equally in Masonry there is a Word which can be written but not pronounced, and there is a mode of uttering that word which cannot be written.  Some writers suppose that the three Cabiri, or Corybantes, symbolise sun, moon, and earth, in the contest between which one is supposed to be slain in eclipse, and quote the words of Hesiod -- "Stained with blood and falling by the hands of two celestial bodies."  One of the gods was named Eubulos, pronounced very similarly to three words used in "Ancient" Masonry, which had a reference to Solomon's temple, which all ancient writers admit was a type of the universe.

   The slain Casmillus had the same signification as the Osirian sun-god, and in the Phoenician, Babylonian, and Egyptian books, and cosmogonies are some curious references which may typify circumcision, the Mythraic baptism of blood, and the Taurobolium or baptism of bull's blood, which is referred to in the Phrygian version of the Cabiric rites.  Thus, on the authority of Philo Byblus, we have it in the legend of Kronos that he sheds his son's blood as a propitiation to his father Ouranos and circumcised his family, and from the words used it would seem that this was symbolically acted in the Mysteries.  In another legend, El castrates his father Ouranos in order to fertilise the rivers, in which is found the first germ of life.  Again Bel Merodach cuts open the dragon Tiamat, or chaos, from which he proceeds.  In the Egyptian Ritual of the Dead it is said: "the blood is that of the sun as he goes along cutting himself."

   Masonic writers tell us that the Initiated symbolically embrued his hands in the blood of the slain Casmillus.  These murdered gods, as in the case of Osiris and Adonis, usually suffer in the generative parts, indicative of the transfer of the life principle, and it is said mythologically that when the two other gods slew Casmillus they fled {44} with a chest containing his genitals to Etruria, in which we have doubtless a notice of colonisation.

   The Cabiric gods were held to be the instructors of mankind in all useful knowledge; magical rites, building, smelting and working in metals, shipbuilding, music, etc., and were denominated Technites or artificers.  Sanconiathon says that Ouranos was the father of Sculptors, as was Hiram the father or Abiv of Masons, metal workers, carvers, and dyers, and in verity a Cabir.  Faber considers that the term Fabri by which the Latins designated Artificers in general is derived from Cabiri, and he also asserts that "all the most ancient remarkable buildings of Greece, Egypt, and Asia Minor were ascribed to Cabirian or Cyclopean Masons."<<Faber, "Cab." i. p. 35.>>

   As the rites also professed to instruct the candidate in incantations such as we know were used by the Akkadians of Babylon that alone would indicate identity of origin.  The learned Hyde attributes the name Cabir to Gabri, Guebri, fire or sun worshippers; and as the slain god is named Akmon, which word also means a cube of eight angles, heaven or Ouranos, it is therefore equivalent to the Semitic Ur and Urim, and remotely to Hiram, whose father Josephus says was named Ur.

   It is said that the Initiatory ceremony into the Mysteries of Samothrace lasted three days and was termed "Enthronement," and that mystic dances representing the motions of the heavenly bodies were performed round the throne, which connects the rite with astronomy.  A white-stone was presented to the Initiate as a symbol of membership.  Hives of bees were preserved in the temple, and the interior cavern or Sanctuary contained a pyramidical chamber as its most sacred place.  Heckethorn asserts that in the Phrygian branch of these Mysteries they had a pine tree cut to form a cross, with the figure of a man upon it, and the same thing is asserted of the British Druids.  The tomb of Midas in Phrygia is adorned with the, equal-limbed cross, or the modern Greek {45} form.  Eusebius, who can see only the worst side of the Mysteries, writes of them in the same style as the modern secularist upon the scriptures.  Ection, he says, founded the Samothracian Mysteries, and Venus sprang from the member of Uranus which was thrown into the sea, wherefore a lump of salt is the symbol of generation.  These are what the Phrygians celebrate as the rites to Attys, Cybele, and the Corybantes.  Certain signs were, "I have eaten out of the tambourine.  I have drank out of the cymbal.  I have carried the mystic salver.  I have slipped into the bed."  Similar expressions are found amongst the Druids, and were known to the Eleusenian initiates.  They are but allegories and not actual rites.

   Clemens of Alexandria speaking of these Mysteries says: -- "Know that having killed their third brother they covered the head of the dead body with a purple cloth, crowned it (or encircled it with a chaplet), and carrying it on the point of a spear (or bearing it on a brazen shield), buried it under the roots of Olympus.  The Mysteries are in short murders and funerals."<<"Ars Quat. Cor." v., p. 173. -- "Exhort," ch. ii., also "Eiusebius," prep. "Gos." c. iii., b. 2.>>  Where two gods murder a third the reference may be to two seasons and winter.

   Babylon.   We will now glance at the Babylonian contemporaries of these Cyclops or Cabiri.  Berosus the Chaldean historian records that the civilisation of Babylon was derived from a god who was half man and half fish, and who rose each day out of the Erythrean sea, and Lepsius has expressed the opinion that the legend points to Egyptian sources.  The faith of the old Akkadians was of a magical nature in which amulets, as in the Cabiric Mysteries, played a leading part.  They adored the spirits of nature and the elements, whom they believed to be ruled by three great gods -- Anu the supreme; Hea the ruler of the earth from his heavenly boat; and Mulgi the lord of the underworld or Hades.  Each of these had his feminine consort.  Hea is the counterpart of the Hebrew {46} Jehovah, he walks with, talks with, and instructs mankind; and a hymn, which is possibly the most ancient in the world, describes his power and might and his victory over the seven-headed serpent, a metaphor equally found in Lapland, Thibet, Egypt, India, Greece, and even Yucatan.  These Akkadians were, like the Egyptians and Mayaux, pyramid builders, and the ruins of Babel or Borsippa is of this nature.  It came to be called the temple of the Bit-zida or of the right hand, and there is an ancient cylinder which represents a seven-stepped pyramid, at the top of which is a colossal hand, and eight worshippers, corresponding to the Cabiric gods surround the pyramid in worship.

   The locality of Babylon gave them in speculation two Great Pillars, the "Mount of the world," in the northeast, or Ararat, which they also termed "the abode of the gods," and which was to them what Meru was to the Aryans, and a corresponding mount in the south west, whence was the descent to the domain of Mulgi the ruler of the dead; which descent was alleged to be guarded by seven concentric walls, with one gate in each wall.  All the great mountains of the East are represented as the residences of a spiritualised race.

   At a remote period the priests had composed an epic in twelve books answering to the Zodiacal signs over which the sun-god journies -- in Akkadian Isdhubhar, in Egyptian Heracles, in Tyrian Melcarth.  It commences the first book or month with the siege of Ghizdubar or Isdhubhar in Erech -- it is light which overcomes darkness.  In the second and third the hero resorts for comfort to the prophet Heabani.  In the fourth and fifth there is war, figuring the elemental storms.  In the sixth and seventh we have the lives and disorders of the hero and Ishter, believed to refer to the moon's changes.  Ishtar descends into Hades, like Ceres of Greece, to seek aid from Mulgi, and is divested of some portion of her apparel at each gate of the seven walls.  In the eighth and ninth we have the wanderings of the hero and a Paradisical garden.  In {47} the tenth the hero is ferried over the Styx that he may be restored to health by Tamzi, the translated Sage.  The eleventh is a similar account of the deluge to that in Genesis.  The twelfth commemorates the death of Heabani.

   In analogy with this sacred number seven, the tower of Babel had seven stories, and Herodotus informs us that Ecbatana in Media was guarded by seven concentric walls, each of which, as were the stories of Babel, was painted to represent one of the seven spheres or planets.  The Mythraic Mysteries though proto-Median in their conception, were Aryan when we become historically acquainted with them, and they had seven caverns of Initiation approached by gates in a pyramid of seven landings, and the trials of Initiation are doubtlessly allegorised by the ancient Persian poet Ferdusi, in the Heft-Khan or labours of Rustam.  In this the implication is obvious that the mythology was more ancient than the erections which symbolised it, old as these are in the world's history.  The tower of Babel or Borsippa, "which had been left unfinished since the deluge," was completed by Nebuchadnezzar with the addition of an eighth story "according to the original design"; this last consisted of a cubical chamber as a shrine for the god, the appointments being of gold.

   The oldest temple in the world is said to have been discovered by excavators at Biaya in Central Babylonia.  The walls of the tower were first uncovered and the summit cleared.  The first inscription on the surface was brick stamped with the name Dungi of 2750 B.C.  A little lower appeared a crumpled piece of gold with the name Param Sim who lived in 3750 B.C. (Freemasons' Chronicle, 15 Aug., 1908.)

   In his "Seven Great Monarchies," Professor George Rawlinson terms the Tower of Babel the "Birs-i-Nimrod," the ancient temple of Nebo at Borsippa.  It was a perfect square of seven ascents or stages, 272 feet at base, each way, the four corners facing the Cardinal points, and the {48} seven stages occupying a height of 156 feet, the highest of all was a perfect cube and the Sanctuary of the God.  Rawlinson's arrangement of these is as follows: --

  Basement, Black,   Saturn.
  Second Stage,  Orange,  Jupiter.
  Third      "  Blood Red, Mars.
  Fourth    "   Golden, Sun.
  Fifth        "   Pale Yellow,  Venus.
  Sixth       "   Azure,  Mercury.
  Seventh "   Silver,   Moon.

   A similar symbolic plan existed in India, for we find Seven Courts of which the last, or central ones, have no canopy, but that of the heavens.  In Egypt, the most ancient of the Pyramids, that of Saccarah, consisted of Seven Stages, the same thing equally existed in Mexico.

   All the wonderful works wrought by the god Hea upon earth were performed by virtue of an omnific Word, which would seem to have been lost to the Magi, though the ancient priests of Egypt appear to have claimed that they possessed it, and they had a god "whose name is hidden."  The Jewish belief as to the power of the Ineffable name of their God JHVH -- Yahvah, Yihvah, or as we, incorrectly, use it Jehovah, would seem to be based on these beliefs.  Yahvah reads, He causes to bring forth.

   Assyria.  A complete fusion of the Akkadian and Semitic faiths had taken place before 2500 B.C., and the population had become known as Chaldean.  Assyria, civilised from Babylon, rose into power, though its precise beginning has not been traced.  About 1820 B.C., Samsi-Vul built at Assur a temple to Anu and Vul, and Iritak built one called the "House of Salvation."  Samsi-Vul also repaired the temple of Ishter then at Nineveh.  About 1350 B.C. Budil built a palace at Assur which his successor Vul-Nerari I. enlarged and which his son Shalmaneser 1300 B.C. still further extended; he also restored the great temple called the "Mountain of the world"; he further built the new city of Caleh, about 18 miles from Nineveh, founded a palace at the latter place, and repaired the temple of Ishter there.  His son Tugulti-Ninip {49} assumed the title of "King of Nations, King of Sumar and Akkad, and conqueror of Karduniyas" (Babylon).  The next great builder was Tiglutli-Pileser, 1120 B.C., he rebuilt the temple of Assur, after a lapse of 701 years and raised there two pyramidical towers; he also improved the palaces of Assur and Nineveh, and left his country one of the foremost monarchies of the world.  His tablet, in the British Museum, represents him with a Maltese cross which hangs from the breast, and there is also one of another king having the like decoration.

   There is a somewhat remarkable Assyrian confirmation of the antiquity of the Masonic system of consecration to be found in the inscriptions.  When Cyrus King of Persia discovered the foundation of his early predecessor in Assyria, Assur-bani-pal, he says -- "I laid the foundation and made firm the bricks; with beer, wine, oil, and honey."<<"Records of the Past," iv, p. 171.>> Other inscriptions mention oil, and the sacrifice of animals.  The foundation cylinder of Naboniadus, a Babylonian King conquered by Cyrus, speaks of the discovery of the foundation-stone of the temple built by Naram-sin, son of Sargon of Akkadia the Semitic conqueror of Babylon 3,200 years earlier.  Recent digging is said to carry Babylonian data to 8000 B.C.

   Something of the nature of caste initiation must also have existed amongst the Augurs and Sacred Scribes.  Professor Sayce in his Hibbert Lectures has to this effect -- A tablet states that an Augur must be, "of pure lineage unblemished in hand or foot," and speaks thus of the vision which is revealed to him before he is "initiated and instructed, in the presence of Samas and Rimmon, in the use of the book and stylus," by "the Scribe, the instructed one, who keeps the oracle of the gods," when he is made to descend into an artificial imitation of the lower world and there beholds "the altars amid the waters, the treasures of Anu, of Bel, and Hea, the tablets of the gods, the delivery of the oracle of heaven and earth, and the cedar tree, the beloved of the great gods, which their {50} hands have caused to grow."  It is thought that each sign of the Babylonian Zodiac had its special order of priests, in all twelve.

   In very many countries the eternal stability and power of the deity was represented by a square block or cube stone.  Maximus Tyrius speaking of the worship of some god by the Arabians says -- "The statue that I saw of him was a square stone."  Phurnutus speaking of the figuration of Hermes or Mercury says -- "As the square figure betokens his solidity; so he wanted neither hands or feet to execute what he was commanded by Jove."<<Toland's "Druids.">>

   Some approximation of the very ancient flourishing period of the Cabiric Mysteries may be formed upon consideration that the Nagon-wat of Cambodia contains Cabiric sculpture in its architecture; the fish-man or Dagon of Babylon, and equally with every nation, including the Mayas of America, the monkey god.  No one now knows what people erected the place, but Blavatsky, who is good testimony on a point of this nature, maintains that whoever built Nagon-wat were of the same religion and race as those who built the ancient Pagodas, the Egyptian pyramids, and the ruins of Ellora, Copan, and Central America.

   Egypt.  If we now turn to Egypt we find it accepted by scholars that its earliest known population were allied with the Akkads of Babylon, by language and religion.  Besides the affinity of the ancient Coptic to the Chinese and Chaldean speech, it is admitted that before the Osirian worship became general, and it is as old as Menes the first King of Egypt, there was an identity of religion; and that the seven gods of Memphis represented in the worship of Ptah -- the potter who creates the world out of the mundane egg -- and his minor gods, are identical with the gods of the Cabiri.  The greater antiquity of Egypt would seem to be proved by the mutations of the methods of writing, for the Egyptians besides their Hieratic and Domatic alphabet, reserved the hieroglyphic system for {51} sacred things; the Domatic was then used for secular matters, and the Hieratic for their sacred manuscripts.  This latter alphabet they transmitted to Phoenicia, whence through Greece and Rome, in a gradually modified state, it forms the characters of our own times.  But when the Akkadians settled in Babylon they were already possessed of the cuneiform alphabet, and although the exact locality where this was developed has not yet been settled, it is possible that they carried it with their language and religion by way of Bactria from their primitive home in the Caucasian highlands, or those of central Asia.  The Egyptian Sesun, the Babylonian Nabu, the Akkadian and Aryan Ak, and the Chinese diagrams called the Kouas, introduced into the primitive Yh-King at a later period, all have the same relation and are equally represented by eight parallel lines in two fours.  The Ritual of the Dead or Manifestations of Light, contains allusions to the Cabiric constellation of the Great Bear or seven stars, who are equally the seven sons of Ptah; the seven spirits of Ra; the seven companions of King Arthur; the seven Hohgates of America; the seven Lumazi or leaders of the star flock of Assyria; they may also be applied to the seven Amashpands of Persia, the seven Rishis of India, and seven spirits that surround the throne of God.  Mr. W. St. Chad Boscawen asserts that at a remote period, a close intercourse existed between Egypt and Chaldea, the point of junction of the two civilisations being the peninsula of Sinai.  The old legends of Chaldea and the old hymns of Eridu which, on the evidence of silt, are assigned a period of 6,000 years B.C., betray a culture derived from a maritime people; Eridu, like Memphis, was called the "Holy City," and in Chaldea we find a god named Asari and in Egypt Heseri or Osiris, whilst in India we have Iswari.

   At the remote period of which we are writing we have no written account of the nature of the Mysteries practised either in Egypt or Chaldea, and we must judge the secret rites, by what we can ascertain of them at a later {52} period; we know, however, that that which was applicable to the Cabiric gods of Greece and Chaldea was also applicable to the seven sons of Ptah at Memphis.  Sanconiathon informs us that in the time of one of the most ancient hierophants, they had corrupted their Mysteries by mingling cosmogonical affections with the historical traditions; from which we see that before his time they had diverged from the Cabiric ritual.  It is very noteworthy that Egypt was the most prosperous during the eras which followed the accession of Menes their first King.  Most of the arts known at this day, and some which we do not know, are pictured in the earliest tombs, and these include gold mining and smelting, Cabiric claims, of which we accept Tubal-Cain as the father on Hebrew evidence.

   It was the custom of the priestly caste to confer Initiation upon a new Pharaoh, as was the case in Babylon, and there are traces of art symbolism to be found in the earliest times.  Thus the Cubit rule was the sacred symbol of Truth; and we are told by Diodorus that the ancient Hieratic alphabet, distinguished from the Domatic or common, was of this nature, as it made use of the tools of carpenters, and he instances the hatchet, pincers, mallet, chisel, and square.  The most ancient ruins contain Masons' Marks, such as the point within a circle, the triangle, the trowel, the tau, and triple-tau.  We give here a part of the first chapter of the Book of the Dead; the work is of a composite character and commingles the Memphian theology of Ptah with that of the Theban Amen, and the Osirian theology.  The copies also vary according to the social position of the dead for whose burial the copies were intended.

   "I am a Priest in Abydos in the day that the earth rejoiceth,

    I see the secret places of the winding region,

    I ordain the festival of the spirit, the Lord of the abiding land,

    I hear the watchword of the watchers over me,

    I am the Architect of the great barge of Sochais, (Ptah.)

    Building it from the stocks . . . . . (a temple Symbol.)

    Oh! ye Liberators of Souls, ye Builders of the house of Osiris, {53}

    Liberate the Soul of the Osirian . . . (Name of deceased.)

    He is with you in the house of Osiris,

    He sees as you see, hears as you hear,

    He stands as you stand, sits as you sit,

    O! ye that give meat and drink,

    To the souls built into the house of Osiris, (living stones.)

    Give seasonable food and drink to the Osirian . . . (Name.)

    I do not compute my justification in many parts,

    My soul stands up square to the face of tbe Judge,

    It is found true on the earth." (Guild Symbolism.)

   Another passage says -- "As the sun died and rose again yesterday, so man dies and rises again."  There are many passages in the Ritual which clearly imply secret Initiation.  The representations of the Judgment Hall of Osiris -- the living one, the Master of life, the Master of all, in all his creation, names, functions, diadems, ornaments, palaces, etc., is of a very impressive character, and has been incorporated with the Christianity of later times.  In some of the papyrus MSS., both in hieroglyphic and hieratic characters, 3- 4,000 years old, the spirit appearing for justification stands between Isis and Nepthys pictured with the sign of a Fellow Freemason; in others he is holding up both arms, representing two squares; in this following the written statement that he stands "square" before his judge.

   Each district of Egypt had its Trinity of Gods: -- Thebes, in the 14th century B.C. had the "hidden god," Amen, "Maker of all things; Thou only one"; Muth (mother) Mother Nature; Khensu (the child): in the 4th century B.C. we have Amen or Khepura (creator); Tefunt (humidity); Shu (light).  Abydos had Osiris, Isis, and Horus.  Elephantine -- Khnum or Chnoumis; Anuka or Anocuis; and Hak.  Heliopolis had Tum or Harmachis; Nebhetp; Horus.  Memphis had Ptah by Merenphtah; Nefer; Atum.

   Though this chapter has run to great length something must be said of the architecture of this extraordinary people.  The oldest structures which remain are the {54} pyramids, and the most ancient of these is possibly 8,000 years old, and may be described as a mere cairn of stones.  Next follows the great pyramid of Ghizeh, which has been termed a stone bible, the Masons might call it that wonderful religious, scientific, and astronomical Tracing-board.  According to Herodotus it was built by Cheops, whom the priests held in detestation, as he had caused all the temples to be closed during its erection, its date variously estimated at 3324 to 4325 B.C.  It is said that the architect was Khufu-ankh, an Osirian, who was buried near to it.  Cheops was certainly an Osirian, whilst the priests were opposed to that worship.<<"Egypt," Wm. Oxley, p. 87.>>  All the pyramids had their official priests attached, and even in the earliest times fabulous sums were lavished upon these structures, and upon their temples.  These latter were divided into three portions: -- 1, an outer court, not always roofed; 2, the body of the temple; 3, the Holy-place and the shrine of the god in whose honour the temple was built.  The temple of Jerusalem was of analogous character.  Archaeologists consider that the prehistorical nucleus was the holy-place, and that gradually other chambers began to be erected around it.  The pyramid was the model upon which the builder acted, the walls sloping and narrowing upwards.

   There are grave discrepancies amongst the learned in regard to the chronology of this nation, owing to disagreement as to whether certain dynasties of kings were reigning contemporaneously; but the great pyramid of Ghizeh, whatever its real age, shews a marvellous knowledge of geometry, astronomy, and operative Masonry.  The hardest granite has been chiselled with such mathematical accuracy that a knife blade will not enter the joints, and men of science suppose that they have discovered in its construction the evidence of a learning equal to that of the present day.  The number 5, and its multiples, is the radical basis of its measurements; precisely as the Israelitish Tabernacle is set up with the like {55} multiple of 5, whilst the Temple of Solomon works upon its exact double or 10.  The pyramid is found to be an exact mathematical expression of the proportion which the diameter bears to its circumference, that is as 1 is to 3.1459{SIC}.  It is accurately oriented, that is its four sides are opposite the cardinal points; and it occurs that twice in each year, at a period of 14 days before the spring, and 14 days after the autumnal equinox, the sun for a short period seems to be resting upon the very apex of the pyramid, as if it was its pedestal.  It is so constructed that five hundred million pyramid inches, or twenty million cubits, represent the polar axis of the earth.  The height multiplied by ten to its ninth power gives the distance of the sun from the earth (about 92 ˝ million miles).  If the length of each of its four base lines is divided by cubits of 25 inches it gives the exact length of a solar year, in days, hours, minutes, and seconds.  The length in inches of the two diagonal lines, drawn across the base, gives exactly the number of years occupied in a full procession of the equinoxes, or 25,826˝  years.  The entrance is so designed that it indicates the obliquity of the polar axis of the earth, and the stones of the Masonry above the entrance form the monogram of Osiris, it is a cube over which are two squares.  The chambers are equally based upon intricate mathematical calculations, and various astronomical facts are symbolised in the arrangements of its several parts, but for these particulars the reader must consult some of the works which have been specially written on the subject.  The coffre in the King's Chamber is generally considered a pastos of Initiation, but is said also to constitute a standard of dry measures.  Even a prophetical bearing is said to be found in its measurements, but as this is the least certain of these various uncertain correspondences we will not enter into it here.

   Herodotus says that it took 300,000 workmen to build the structure in 30 years, and that one-third of the men and of the time were employed in making a causeway {56} for the blocks.  Noting its splendid work, we may ask, if this pyramid is only 5,000 years old, of what age is Cyclopean work?

   But the pyramid of Cheops has a much more important bearing on Speculative Freemasonry than anything that we have yet said; and though the secrecy of the priests of Egypt was absolute, yet is not altogether impenetrable.  This secrecy was equally stringent at Memphis, Thebes, and Heliopolis, and when Pythagoras applied for initiation he was referred from one to the other.  The architect of Cheops embodied the Osirian Mysteries in imperishable stone, as did also the builder of the Babylonian Borsippa, and the designer of the Persian cave of Mythras.  And now for something of the Mysteries of Egypt, as represented by this pyramid.  The entrance and its passage conform to the letter Y, or "two paths" of Pythagoras and the broad and narrow way of the Greek Mysteries.  The descending path leads to an underground chamber, the floor of which is rough and unhewn, as is the rough Ashlar of a Freemason.  The ascending passage leads first to a middle chamber named the Queen's, or that of our Lady Isis, and above that is the King's chamber with the empty sarcophagus of Osiris; over all are five secret chambers of small dimensions.  Dr. Oliver asserts that the vesica piscis enters into the constructive design of the Queen's chamber.<<"Freemasons' Treasury," p. 241.>>  The whole of the internal structure covers an all-important allegory.  It has been recently shewn by Brother W. M. Adams, and having the general approval of Professor Maspero, that there is a relationship between the internal structure of the pyramid and the Ritual of the Dead, or as Maspero says, "both the one and the other have reference to an ideal house which Horus was conceived to have erected for his father Osiris," and Adams points out that the Well, the hidden lintel, the north and south passages apply equally to the heavenly temple, and the earthly counterpart.  It is in fact the embodiment, perhaps 6,000 years ago, of a {57} speculative and operative Masonry consonant with the spiritual faith of Osiris.

   The religious symbols of Egypt, according to Mr. William Oxley's work on Egypt, changed with the progress of the sun through the signs of the zodiac, an assertion confirmed by much evidence.  The era of Osiris and Isis is mythical, yet they are represented as parents of the twins Horus and Harmachis.  In the year 4,565 B.C. the sun entered Taurus, and the Bull became the emblem of Osiris.  It entered Aries 2,410 B.C., and the Ram becomes the emblem of Amen at Thebes.  It entered Pisces 255 B.C., and we have crocodile-shaped gods, and the fish is a Christian symbol.  The Egyptians conveyed something of this nature to Herodotus, who records it in a curious fable: Heracles desired to behold the highest god, he being one of the 12 minor gods; at length to meet his prayers, the supreme one revealed himself clothed in the skin and with the head of a Ram.  The late Godfrey Higgins supposes in his Anacalypsis that when the sun entered Taurus he found man a negro such as the black Budha, and when he entered Aries he found him still black but with aquiline nose and straight hair as in the handsome Chrishna.

   The recent discoveries of Colonel Ram indicates that the Sphinx is one of the most ancient monuments of Egypt, as it was old in the days of Cheops, and there is a tablet which shows that it was repaired by Pharaoh Chephren.  It represents, as facing the rising sun, the god Ra-Harmachis and has at its base several chambers hewn in the rock, the tombs of kings and priests devoted to the worship of Harmachis.

   During the 5th dynasty of Kings several small temples were erected, as at Esneh, some pyramids, and an Osirian temple at Dendereh.  There is an inscription of the 6th dynasty in the Ghizeh Museum, in which Una, a man of the people, describes how he had been sent by Pepi I. to cut, and then convey, a block of stone for the royal {58} tomb; he details the mode in which he accomplished this, with much engineering skill, about 3,400 B.C., and styles himself "chief of the royal workmen."  Usertesen I., perhaps 3,000 B.C., laid the foundation of the temple of the Sun at Heliopolis, and assumes himself to be son of the double Harmachis; the same king built the front part of the temple of Karnak, which measures 1,200 feet by 348 feet; he also enlarged the temple of Ptah at Memphis.  Professor Norman Lockyer, F.R.S., considers that as Karnak is oriented to receive the direct shaft of the sunlight at the season when it touched the horizon, opposite the temple gateway, that it was built 3,700 B.C.

   The superintendence of Egyptian Craftsmen by higher officials is shewn in the rockcut temple of Rekhmara, as 3,400 years ago the Vizier of Thebes is represented with all his attendants, "inspecting all the handicrafts made in the temple of the house of Amen, and teaching each man his duty concerning his trade."  His inscription concludes: "I have left no evil deeds behind me, may I be declared just and true in the great judgment."  (Boscawen in Globe, Aug., 1900.)

   A few centuries later the famous Labyrinth was erected; it represents the twelve Zodiacal signs, and the twelve great gods, and contains 3,000 chambers with a lofty carved pyramid as adjunct.  As proof that the priests had a monotheistic creed we quote the following words from over the gate-way of the temple of Medinet-Abou: -- "It is He that has made all that is, and without Him nothing has been made."  The temple of Luxor is the largest upon earth, but space fails us to record a tithe of the mighty works of this wonderful race.  The names of numerous architects are preserved and Brugsch, Leiblein, and Lepsius, give the names of thirty-four, some of whom were allied with the reigning Pharaohs.  Commercial intercourse existed with China, as pottery, and other works of art, have been found in very ancient tombs.

   There is the record of an Artist of the name of Iretsen, of about 2,800 B.C., in which he says: -- "I know the {59} mystery of the divine Word; the ordinances of the religious festivals, and every rite performed therein, and I have never strayed from them.  I know how to produce the form that issueth forth and cometh in, so that each member goes to its place.  I know the contemplating eye, without a second, which affrights the wicked; also the posing of the arm that brings the hippopotamus low.  I know the making of amulets, by which one may go and the fire will not give its flame, nor will the water destroy.  I am an artist wise in his art, a man standing above all men by his learning."  One passage here can only refer to the egress and ingress of the soul in trance, as in the Yogism of India, and the amulets against fire and water would seem to refer to the trials of the Neophyte by fire and water in the Mysteries.  But in our days very extraordinary tales are told about the priests of Japan, and other less civilised people, walking unharmed over hot coals.  We wonder how this artist would interpret the following symbolic design upon an ancient monument?   A lion holds in one paw a crux-ansata , and with the other takes the hand of a recumbent man, whose head is near an altar, as if the lion intended to raise the man; at the altar stands a god with the hailing sign of a Craftsman.<<Vide Pike's "Morals and Dogma," p. 80.>>

   The highest development of Egyptian civilisation was during the patriarchal times extending from the 4th to the 12th dynasty, say from 7,000 to 2,400 B.C., and before Egypt began to be affected by foreign influence.  The kings had their "Court Architects," the profession being held in such honour that this officer often mated with the royal family.  During the whole period that we have named the highest positions of the State were open to intellect, and the humblest man might aspire to become a General, a Court Architect, or a royal Scribe: the Kings were the fathers of the people, and accessible to their subjects, and a successful soldier or architect might become, as the highest prize, a "Royal Companion," or a "True royal {60} Companion," and be intimately associated with the King.<<W. St. Chad Boscawen.>>

   Running contemporaneously with the Egyptian culture was that of the great Scytho-Hittite Kingdom, the equal of Egypt, in metals, buildings, and art, and Captain Conder points out that the point within a circle, , was their phonetic symbol for "An," or God; the five-pointed star, , the symbol of "to," which implies either down, or to descend, and that the cypriote symbol of two triangles joined at their apex, , but without the bottom line, , was the Hittite character for man or protection.<<"Lucifer," ix.>>

   A long period of historical darkness now supervenes, and it has been discovered that a race totally distinct from the Egyptians had taken possession of the highlands to the north of Thebes, between the 7th and 9th dynasty.  They were a tall, powerful race, resembling the Lybian and Ammonite people, had wavy brown hair, prominent aquiline noses, and used flint axes and copper implements.  They were accomplished potters, stone workers, and metallurgists.  In a ritualistic sense they were cannibals, and broke the bones of human bodies to extract the marrow.  Near to the home of this recently discovered race was Nubt, a town which was devoted to the worship of the execrated Set and which is mentioned in one of the Satires of Juvenal, as the origin of horrid wars, and cannibal orgies.

   Following upon this, as if in some measure due to it, was the domination of the Hyksos, or Shepherd Kings, who overran Egypt, between 2500 and 1600 B.C., perhaps dependent in part upon the ferment which arose in Central Asia when the Elamites invaded Babylon, and these Hyksos seem to have followed the religious views of the Semitic tribes, though some writers have thought that they were old believers who were opposed to the ritual of Osiris, which we shall mention in our next chapter as an Aryan ritual, the weight of evidence is altogether in favour of a foreign origin of {61} the invaders.  Manetho, an Egyptian historian who was employed by the Greek Ptolomies to investigate the annals of Egypt, asserts that the Hebrews were of this race.<<Josephus, "Against Apion.">>  Simplicius asserts that what Moses taught the Hebrews he had learned in the Mysteries.  These Hyksos were at length expelled by a Theban of the name of Aahames and the Osirian temples were reopened.

   Very recently the mummy of Menephtah was discovered at Luxor, and on examination at Cairo was held to be the Pharaoh who pursued the Israelites; he was the 2nd king of the 19th dynasty.

   Thothmes III., about 1,600 B.C., relates the ceremony which he observed in laying a foundation-stone at Buto, but the tablet is imperfect.  The first stroke of the hammer thereon appears to be intended to conjure the keeping out of the water; a document was deposited in the stone containing the names of all the great gods and goddesses, "and the people rejoiced."  There is also an inscription of this period on the Statue of Semut, in which he is styled: "First of the first, and Master of the works of all Masters of work."

   There are also Geometrical diagrams of this period indicating the knowledge of the square, and in the great pyramid there yet exists a workman's diagram indicating the method of making a right angle; the vesica piscis exists in a recess over the King's Chamber.  Some of the drawings yet exist of a Canon of proportion for the construction of the human figure, which Vitruvius represents by this {X}, the navel being the centre; and though from the earliest to the latest times, the Canon varied, the relative proportions were fixed by forming a chequered diagram of perfect squares.  Clement of Alexandria says that the temples of Jerusalem and Egypt separated the congregation and the Sanctuary by a large curtain of four colours, drawn over five pillars, the one alluding to the cardinal points of the compass, the other to the elements.  The Pyramids were worked from the centre by the angle {62} 3, 4, 5.  The Guilds say that this symbol , indicates the presence of 3 G.M.M.'s.

   There followed upon this era the introduction into Egypt of a large amount of Babylonian influence, but to render this comprehensible some explanation is necessary.  At some remote period races of conquering Cushites from Ethiopia, followed by Semites, settled in Elam, had planted themselves in Babylon.  The first of them was probably a worshipper of the god Marduk, or Mercury who is also Thoth and Hermes, for the Biblical Nimrod is one with Marduk, the beginning of whose kingdom was Babel and Erech and (Ur in) Accad, and Calneh in the land of Shinar.  These new comers accepted the religion of the earlier Akkadians, whence we may assume either that there had arisen no great distinctions in the mode of worship, or that the latter had influence as a race of higher culture.  The conquerors, however, changed the names of the gods to adapt them to their own Arya-Semitic tongue, and as astronomical terms are in that language the inference is drawn that that science was a Semitic development.<<"Chaldean Magic," -- Lenormant.>>  The chief gods of the assimilated race were Samas the sun-god; Sin the moon-god; and Yav "the inundator," who is probably Hea of Akkad.  They accepted the doctrine of the soul's immortality.<<"Records of the Past" -- translated hymn.>>  The early Assyrian King Asir-nasir-pal claims all the diabolical conquests which he relates in his inscriptions from these gods, and proclaimed himself as the "exalter of Yav."  The Semitic names of Beth-Yakin and Yakin, as names of places and persons are found in these early inscriptions.  The remains of this theology exists to-day amongst the Yezids of Asia, the sun is worshipped by its old name, and the moon and bull receive equal veneration amongst some of the tribes, and with the worship have been transmitted secret modes of recognition, which a writer who was acquainted with them terms Freemasons' {63} signs.<<"Ars Quat. Cor." iv. -- Yezids (Yarker).>>  It equally constitutes an argument for the possibility of the uninterrupted transmission of Freemasonry from century to century; and it is impossible to overlook the many striking points of similarity to the primitive Mysteries which it possesses; and the inference which we may draw from this is that an educated priesthood had added art and science to their curriculum, and that all temples yet continued to be erected under their supervision.

   The Chaldean civilisation about 4,000 years ago dominated Syria, and its tongue became the diplomatic language of the known world, whilst commerce was maintained extensively between Egypt, Babylon, India, and China.  About 1500 B.C. an Egyptian King of the name of Amenophis III., a worshipper of the Theban god Amen, married an Asiatic woman who surrounded the throne with her kindred, and a Babylon Scribe was established at the Court, for Chaldean legends were copied and sent to Egypt.  Their son Amen-hotep adopted the Chaldean faith and changed his name to Khu-en-aten, withdrawing from Amen, then one of the oldest priesthoods in the world.  He built in eight years the vast city of Tel-el-amarna, where for seventeen years he enforced the worship of the "Solar disc," or its vitalising rays.  It was in fact the worship of the sun's vital rays as the source of all vital life, power and force.  Probably in some respects it was a restoration of the faith of the Hyksos but it terminated again with the death of the King.  In the erection of his new city, Bek, the hereditary successor of a long line of Egyptian architects, is described as -- "the artist, the overseer of the sculptors, the teacher of the King himself."  His assistant, or what we should now term, his Deputy or Warden, was Potha, who is described as -- "Master of the Sculptors of the Queen," by whom no doubt the Asiatic is meant.  These valuable records have only recently been disinterred, and in the house of the Master, trial-pieces were found in various stages exemplifying {64} the cutting of hieroglyphics, and as well, perfectly finished portraits and statues, without any admixture of foreign style, and which are equal to any work of the moderns.  It is noteworthy that the ground plan of the tomb of the Queen of Amenophis III., about 1470 B.C., is a cross of the Latin form, and as Mr. William Oxley says, "exactly on the plan of a Christian church."

   The Ramiside dynasty, in which the priests of Amen came again into power, did much in the 14th century B.C. to adorn Egypt with stately buildings, and Beken-Khonsoo describes himself as the architect of Rameses II., "the friend of Amen," and the restorer of Karnak, and Dr. Wm. Birch informs us that the twins Suti and Har were Mer-kat, architects, who had charge of Karnak.  Rameses III. makes a record of the numerous temples which he restored.  He built at Thebes a temple to Khons, of good hewn sandstone and black basalt, having gates whose folding doors were plated with gold and itself overlaid with electrum like the horizon of heaven.<<"Records of the Past," vi.>>

   It is unfortunate that we have so little that is authentic in regard to the rites of the Mysteries, though the doctrine is fully embodied in the Ritual of the Dead, we only begin to have details after they had been carried to Greece by Orpheus, Cadmus, and Cecrops in the 16th century B.C.  All the Egyptian Kings were initiated into them, and are represented as adorned with very handsome aprons.  There are also representations, in paintings, of scenes which may equally apply to the earthly Mysteries, or to the passage of the soul in the after life, which was in reality the object of the sacerdotal mysteries, and it was a firm custom in Egypt to adapt their whole life to their faith in the future, or to enact in their religious rites, that which they believed would follow on quitting the body.

   In our next chapter we may be able to form a more solid opinion upon the changes made in the Cabiric Mysteries, which were clearly the most ancient of the great Mysteries, by the advanced Aryans, and as to the alleged {65} changes made in ancient Egypt by the substitution of cosmogonical or natural effects, for such traditional history as that recorded by Sanconiathon, Berosus, etc., a natural consequence, for the Egyptians were undoubtedly a nation of mixed blood.  They seem first to have been of the Negro or Hamitic type with a polytheistic creed, they saw God in all nature and in all forms.  As proto-Aryans they developed greatly the arts and sciences.  Lastly, reinforced by purer Aryans they became the Apostles of the conditional immortality of the human soul.  During the thousand years rule of the Hyksos, or Shepherd Kings, they were in constant contact with a monotheistic creed, but no sooner had they driven out these oppressors than the rites of the doctrine of immortality, under a Father, Mother, and Son, arose in their old splendour.

   By way of closing this chapter it may be pointed out that we have first a series of Mysteries, which amongst people who, living in hot climates, had little need of art, and confined themselves rather to speculative views of the creation of the world and the relations that exist between heaven and earth.  To these, in the next stage were added the whole circle of arts and science, the older Mysteries as to the creation of the world and the affinity between heaven and earth were retained, but a superior race of Cabiri added an improved architecture, agriculture, metallurgy, shipbuilding, and all the arts.  The third stage which followed was the separation of the Mysteries of Religion and Art into two branches.


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