The Masonic Trowel

... to spread the cement of brotherly love and affection, that cement which unites us into one sacred band or society of brothers, among whom no contention should ever exist, but that noble emulation of who can best work or best agree ...

[What is Freemasonry] [Leadership Development] [Education] [Masonic Talks] [Masonic Magazines Online]
Articles] [Masonic Books Online] [E-Books] [Library Of All Articles] [Masonic Blogs] [Links]
What is New] [Feedback]

 Masonic quotes by Brothers

Search Website For

Add To Favorites

Help Me Maintain OUR Website!!!!!!

List of Contributors

PDF This File

Print This Page

Email This Site To ...

A considerable sensation was produced in Masonic circles by the appearance at Frankfort, in 1755, of a work entitled Saint Nicaise, oder eine Sammlung merkwürdiger Maürerischer Briefe, für Freimaürer und die es nicht, Saint Nicaise, or a Collection of curious Masonic papers for Freemasons and others. A second edition was issued in 178f;. Its title-page asserts it to be a translation from the French, but it was really written by doctor Starck. It professes to contain the letters of a French Freemason who was traveling on account of Freemasonry, and having learned the mode of work in England and Germany, had become dissatisfied with both, and had retired into a cloister in France. It was really intended, although Starck had abandoned Freemasonry, to defend his system of Spiritual Templarism, in opposition to that of the Baron Von Hund. Accordingly, it was answered in 1786 by Von Sprengseisen, who was an ardent friend and admirer of Von Hund, in a work entitled Anti Saint Nicaise, which was immediately followed by two other essays by the same author, entitled Archimedes, and Scala Algebraica (Economica These three works have become exceedingly rare.
As Saint Paul's, the Cathedral Church of London, was rebuilt by Sir Christopher Wren—who is called (in the Book of Constitutions, 1738, page 107) the Grand Master of Freemasons—and some writers have advanced the theory that Freemasonry took its origin at the construction of that edifice. In the Fourth Degree of Fessler's Rite—which is occupied in the critical examination of the various theories on the origin of Freemasonry— among the seven sources that are considered, the building of Saint Paul's Church is one. Nicolai does not positively assert the theory; but he thinks it not an improbable one, and believes that a new system of symbols was at that time invented. It is said that there was, before the revival in 1717, an old Lodge of Saint Paul's; and it is reasonable to suppose that the Operative Masons engaged upon the building were united with the architects and men of other professions in the formation of a Lsdge, under the regulation which no longer restricted the Institution to Operative Masonry. But there is no authentic historical evidence that Freemasonry first took its rise at the building of Saint Paul's Church.
The Holy Saints John, so frequently mentioned in the instructions of Symbolic Freemasonry, are Saint John the Baptist and Saint John the Evangelist, which see. The original dedication of Lodges.was to the Holy Saint John, meaning the Baptist.
See Festivals.
A French Masonic writer, who published, in 1781, a work in Adonhiramite Masonry, entitled Receuil Précieuz de la Maçonnerie Adonhiramite, or Choice Collection of Adonhiramite Masonry. This volume contained the instructions of the first four Degrees, and was followed, in 1787, by another, which contained the higher degrees of the Rite. If Saint Victor was not the inventor of this Rite, he at least modified and established it as a working system, and, by his writings and his labors, gave to it whatever popularity it at one time possessed. Subsequent to the publication of his Receuil Précieuz, he wrote his Origine de la Maçonnerie Adonhiramite, a learned and interesting work, in which he seeks to trace the source of the Masonic initiation to the Mysteries of the Egyptian Priesthood.
The Divine Presence. The Shekinah, which see.
The female energy of Brahma, of Vishnu, or especially of Siva. This lascivious worship was inculcated in the Tantra meaning Instrument of Faith, a Sanskrit work, found under various forms, and regarded by its numerous Brahmanical and other followers as a fifth Veda.
The name of the Arabic form of salutation, which is by bowing the head and bringing the extended arms forward from the sides until the thumbs touch, the palms being down.
More properly Salah-ed-din, Yussuf ibn Ayub, the Sultan of Egypt and Syria, in the time of Richard Coeur-de Lion, and the founder of the Ayubite dynasty. As the great Moslem hero of the Third Crusade, and the beau-ideal of Moslem chivalry, he is one of the most imposing characters presented to us by the history of that period. Born at Takreit, 1137; died at Damascus, 1193. In his man hood he had entered the service of Noureddin.
He became Grand Vizier of the Fatimite Calif, and received the title of the Victorious Prince. At Noured din's death, Salah-ed-din combated the succession and became the Sultan of Syria and Egypt. For ten succeeding years he was in petty warfare with the Christians until at Tiberias, in 1187, the Christians were terribly punished for plundering a wealthy caravan on its way to Mecca.
The King of Jerusalem, two Grand Masters, and many warriors were taken captives Jerusalem stormed, and many fortifications reduced This roused Western Europe; the Kings of France and England, with a mighty host, soon made their appearance; they captured Acre in 1191, and Richard Coeur-de-Lion, with an invading force, twice defeated the Sultan, and obtained a treaty in 1192, by which the coast from Jaffa to Tyre was yielded to the Christians. Salah-ed-din becomes a prominent character in two wof the Consistorial Degrees of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, mainly exemplifying the universality of Freemasonry Brother Lessing has in his dramatic poem, Nathan the Wise, presented a most romantic and edifying character in an Eastern Monarch of this kind to illustrate Masonic toleration.
An Italian philosopher and litterateur, who was born at Cozenza, in Calabria January 1, 1759, and died at Passy, near Paris, September, 1832. He was at one time Professor of history and Philosophy at Milan. He was a prolific M riter, and the author of many works on history and political economy. He published, also, several poems and dramas, and received, in 1811, the prize given by the Lodge at Leghorn for a Masonic essay upon the utility of the Craft and its relation to philanthropy and morals, and entitled Della utiltà delta Franca Massoneria sotto it rapporto filantropico é morale.
A significant word in the advanced De grees, invented, most probably, at first for the system of the Council of Emperors of the East and West, and transferred to the Ancient and Accepted Seottish Rite. It is derived, say the old French rituals, from the initials of a part of a sentence, and has, therefore, no other meaning.
A French expression meaning the Hall of the Lost Steps. The French thus call the anteroom in which visitors are placed before their admission into the Lodge. The Gerrnans call it the Fore-Court, Vorhof, and sometimes, as with the French, der Saal der verlornen Schritte. Lenning says that it derives its name from the fact that every step taken before entrance into the Fraternity, or not made in accordance with the precepts of the Order, is considered as lost.
The elaborate title, somewhat extravagant as Sanctified, illuminated, of the reigning Master or third class of the Illuminated Chapter according to the Swedish system.
An island in the Bay of Bombay, celebrated for stupendous caverns excavated artificially out of the solid rock, with a labor which must, says Grose, have been equal to that of erecting the Pyramids, and which were appropriated to the initiations in the Ancient Mysteries of India.
In the Helvetian or Swiss instructions, salt is added to corn, wine, and oil as one of the elements of consecrations because it is a symbol of the wisdom and learning which should characterize a Freemason's Lodge. When the foundation-stone of a Lodge is laid, the Helvetian ceremonial directs that it shall be sprinkled with salt, and this formula be used: "May this undertaking, contrived by wisdom, be executed in strength and adorned with beauty, so that it may be a house where peace, harmony, and brotherly love shall perpetually reign." This is but carrying out the ancient instructions of Leviticus (ii, 13), "
And every oblation of thy meat offering shalt thou season with salt; neither shalt thou suffer the salt of the covenant of thy God to be laching from thy meat offering: with all thine offerings thou shalt offer salt." Significant as are the references in the Bible to salt, as the rubbing of salt on the new-born child (Ezekiel xvi, 4); the allusions in Mark (ix, 49, 50), "
For every one shall be salted with fire and every sacrifice shall be salted with salt. Salt is good: but if the salt have lost his saltiness, wherewith will ye season it? Have salt in yourselves, and have peace one with another;" the burnt offerings of Ezekiel (xliii, 24) were sprinkled with salt, "And thou shalt offer them before the Lord, and the priests shall east salt upon them, and they shall offer them up for a burnt offering unto the Lord;" the "covenant of salt for ever before the Lord unto thee and to thy seed with thee" of Numbers (xvii, 19) and again in Second Chronieles (xii, 5), these are all reminders of the ancient importance of salt, the symbol of pledged affiliation, as in the weighty and warning utterance of Jesus in Matthew (v, 13) "
Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? It ins thenceforth good for nothing, but to be east out, and to be trodden under foot of men." Salt to the ancient world was pronounced a substanee dear to the gods (Plato, Timaeus) and to break bread and eat salt at a meal with others were symbols of plighted faith and loyalty.
Lenning says, that in accordance with the usage of the Operative Masons, it was formerly the custom for a strange Brother, when he visited a Lodge, to bring to it such a salutation as this: "From the Right Worshipful Brethren and Fellows of a Right Worshipful and Holy Lodge of Saint John." The English salutation, at the middle of the eighteenth century, was: "From the Right Worshipful Brothers and Fellows of the Right Worshipful and Holv Lodge of Saint John, from whence I come and greet you thrice heartily well. " The custom has become obsolete, although there is an allusion to it in the answer to the question, "Whence come you?" in the modern catechism of the Entered Apprentiee's Degree. But Lenning is incorrect in saying that the salutation went out of use after the introduction of Certificates. The salutation was, as has been seen, in use in the eighteenth century, and Doctor Mackey noted that Certificates were required as far back at least as the year 1683.
The Latin word for Health and used as a greeting. When the Romans wrote friendly Setters they prefixed the letter S as the initial of Salutem, or health, and thus the writer expressed a wish for the health of his correspondent. At the head of Masonic documents we often find this initial letter thrice repeated, thus: S.-.S.-.S.-., with the same signifieation of Health, Health, Health. It is equivalent to the English expression, Thrice Greeting.
Among the Stone-Masons of Germany, in the Middle Ages, a distinction was made between the Grussmaurer or Wortmaurer, the Salute Mason or Word Mason, and the Schriftmaurer or Letter Mason. The Salute Masons had signs, words, and other modes of recognition by which they could malie themselves known to each other; while the Letter Masons, who were also called Brieftrager or Letter Bearers, had no mode, when they visited strange Lodges, of proving themselves, except by the Certificates or written testimonials which they brought with them. Thus, in the examination of a German Stone-Mason, which has been published in Fallou's Mysterien der Freimaurerei (page 25), and copied thence by Findel ( History of Freemasonry, page 659), we find these questions proposed to a visiting Brother, and the answers thereto:
Warden. Stranger, are you a Letter Mason or a Salute Mason?
Stranger. I am a Salute Mason.
Warden. How shall I know you to be such?
Stranger. By my salute and words of my mouth.
See San Salvador.
A city situated near the center of Palestine, and built by Omri, King of Israel, about 925 B.C. It was the metropolis of the Kingdom of Israel, or of the Ten Tribes, and was, during the exile, peopled by many Pagan foreigners sent to supply the place of the deported inhabitants. Hence it became a seat of idolatry, and was frequently denounced bv the prophets (see Samaritans).
See Good Samaritan.
The Samaritans were originally the descendants of the ten revolted tribes who had chosen Samaria for their metropolis. Subsequently, the Samaritans were conquered by the Assyrians under Shalmaneser, who carried the greater part of the inhabitants into captivity, and introduced colonies in their place from Babylon, Cultah, Ava, Hamath, and Sepharvaim. These colonists, who assumed the name of Samaritans, brought with them of course the idolatrous creed and praetises of the region from which they emigrated. The Samaritans, therefore, at the time of the rebuilding of the second Temple, were an idolatrous race, and as such abhorrent to the Jews. When they asked permission to assist in the pious work of rebuilding the Temple, Zerubbabel, with the rest of the leaders, replied, "Ye have nothing to do with us to build a house unto our God; but we ourselves together will build unto the Lord God of Israel, as King Cyrus, the king of Persia, has commanded us."
Hence it was that, to avoid the possibility of these idolatrous Samaritans polluting the holy work by their eo-operation, Zerubbabel found it necessary to demand of every one who offered himself as an assistant in the undertaking that he should give an accurate account of his lineage, and prove himself to have been a descendant, which no Samaritan could be, of those faithful Giblemites who worked at the building of the first Temple.

There were many points of religious difference between the Jews and the Samaritans. One was, that they denied the authority of any of the Seriptures except the Pentateuch; another was that they asserted that it was on Mount Gerizim, and not on Mount Moriah, that Melehizedek met Abraham when returning from the slaughter of the kings, and that here also he came to sacrifice Isaac, whence they paid no reverence to Moriah as the site of the Holy House of the Lord. A few of the sect have long survived at Nabulus. They did not exceed one hundred and fifty. They had a High Priest, and observed all the feasts of the ancient Jews, and especially that of the Passover, which they kept on Mount Gerizim with all the formalities of the ancient rites.
The Mysteries of the Cabiri are sometimes so called because the principal seat of their celebration was in the Island of Samothrace. "I ask," says Voltaire (Dictionary of Philosophy), "who were these Hierophants, these sacred Freemasons, who celebrated their Ancient Mysteries of Samothracia, and whence came they and their gods Cabiri?" (see Cabiric Mysteries).
The Holy of Holies in the Temple of Solomon (see Holy of Holies).
Latin for Holy of Holies, which see.
In the Rabbinieal system of Angelology, one of the three angels who receive the prayers of the Israelites and weave crowns from them Longfellow used this idea in a most beautiful poem.
Freemasonry was first introduced into those far islands of the Pacific by the Grand Orient of France, which issued a Dispensation for the establishment of a Lodge about 1848, or perhaps earlier; but it was not prosperous, and soon became dormant. In 1852, the Grand Lodge of California granted a Warrant to Hawaiian Lodge, No 21, on its register at Honolulu. Royal Arch and Templar Freemasonry have both been since introduced. Honolulu Chapter was established in 1859, and Honolulu Commandery in 1871 (see Oceania).
Derived, probably, from the old French, sang real, the true blood; although other etymologies have been proposed. The San Graal is represented, in legendary history, as being an emerald dish in which our Lord had partaken of the last supper. Joseph of Arimathea, having further sanctified it by receiving into it the blood issuing from the five wounds, afterward carried it to England. Subsequently it disappeared in consequence of the sins of the land, and was long lost sight of. When Merlin established the Knights of the Round Table, he told them that the San Graal should be discovered by one of them, but that he only could see it who was without sin. one day, when Arthur was holding a high feast with his Knights of the Round Table, the San Graal suddenly appeared to him and to all his chivalry, and then as suddenly disappeared.
The consequence was that all the knights took upon them a solemn vow to seek the Holy Dish. The Quest of the San Graal became one of the most prominent myths of what has been called the Arthuric Cycle. The old French romance of the forte d'Arthur, or Death of Arthur, which was published by Caxton in 1485, contains the adventures of Sir Galahad in search of the San Graal.
There are several other romances of which this wonderful vessel, invested with the most marvelous properties is the subject. The Quest of the San Graal very foreibly reminds us of the Search for the Lost Word. Thc symbolism is precisely the same—the loss and the recovery being but the lesson of death and eternal life—so that the San Graal in the Arthurian Myth, and the Lost Word in the Masonic Legend, seem to be identical in object and design. Hence it is not surprising that a French writer, De Caumont, should have said (Bulletin Monument, page 129) that "the poets of the twelfth and fourteenth centuries, who composed the romances of the Round Table made Joseph of Arimathea the chief of a military and religious Freemasonry."

There is a considerable literature attached to the history of this romance written about the famous talisman. Even the name has been subjected frequently, as Doctor Mackey points out, to various interpretations. Probably the most of these commcntators today accept the first word as a mutiliated form from the Latin meaning holy. The text compiled and translated by Sir Thomas Malory, and the one best known to English students, is now usually mentioned as the Quest of the Holy Grail, from the French Quête du Saint Grail. Malory himself, by the way, being also much of a puzzle, Sir Sidney Lee (Dictionary of National Biography) admits he could find no one of that name to meet the conditions.
But Professor S. L. Kittredge in his inquiry, Who was Sir Thomas Malory? Harvard Studies and Notes (1896, volume v), identifies him with a Warwickshire, England, gentleman who died on March 14, 1470. Professor W. W. Skeat in the preface to Joseph of Arimathie, published by the Early English Text Society, traces the word grail through the older French to graal and great, thence to a Low Latin original gradale, gradalis or grasale, a flat dish, but on the surface this derivation appears to us more hopeful than scientifically convincing. The legend has been exquisitely told in choice prose and verse since at least the Middle Ages gave it prominence.
The highest judicial tribunal among the Jews. It consisted of seventy-two persons besides the High Priest. It is supposed to have originated with Moses, who instituted a Council of Seventy on the occasion of a rebellion of the Israelites in the wilderness. The room in which the Sanhedrim met was a rotunda, half of which was built without the Temple and half within, the latter part being that in which the judges sat. The Nasi, or Prince, who was generally the High Priest, sat on a throne at the end of the hall; his Deputy, called Ab-beth-din, at his right hand; and the Subdeputy, or Chaean, at his left; the other senators being ranged in order on each side. Most of the members of this Couneil were Priests or Levites, though men in private stations of life were not excluded.
According to the English system of the Royal Arch, a Chapter of Royal Arch Masons represents the Sanhedrim, and therefore it is a rule that it shall never consist of more than seventy-two members, although a smaller number is competent to transact any business. This theory is an erroneous one, for in the time of Zerubbabel there was no Sanhadrim, that tribunal having been first established after the Macedonian conquest. The place in the Temple where the Sanhedrim met was called Gabbatha, or the Pavement; it was a room whose floor was formed of ornamental square Stones, and it is from this that the Masonic idea has probably arisen that the floor of the Lodge is a tessellated or mosaic pavement.
The capital of the Rcpublie of Salvador, Central America. Freemasonry was brought into this State quite early, but in 1882 it was suppressed. On March 5, 1882, Rafael Zaldwar, President of the Republic, organized the brethren into a Lodge, Excelsior No. 17, chartered by the Grand Orient of Central America. Another, Caridad y Constancia (Charity and Constancy) No. 18,was opened at Tecla.
On July 14, 1908, the Grand Lodge Cuscatlan do San Salvador was formed by three Lodges, Excelsior, Fuerza y Materia, and Manazan. It was recognized in 1917 by the Grand Lodge of New York. Brother Street, however, in 1922 report, writes:—"It has discredited itself very much in the eyes of the regular Jurisdictions by the readiness with which it recognizes the irregular bodies."
The Mexican War was fought in the Far West by young volunteers from the still-new States of Illinois and Missouri. It happened that John Rolls, Colonel of the Third Regiment of Missouri Volunteers, was Grand Master, Grand Lodge of Missouri; when he discovered a number of Masons in his lines he issued a dispensation for Missouri Military Lodge, No. 86; on June 15, 1847, this Lodge was instituted at Independence, into., the eastern terminal of the Santa Fe Trail; and on October 14, 1847, received its Charter. The Lodge held one Communication there; it held its next Communication in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Between those two Communications the young men Of Missouri marched 900 miles—a feat of epic proportion; and why it has so nearly escaped the attention of historians, novelists, and poets is one among the many mysteries of the West, which today, and excepting only for a few small populated enclaves, is as empty and almost as unknown as it was then; and especially was it epic because the men marched where never an army had marched before, through lands of hostile tribes, and deserts, and rattlesnakes without number (the existence of which, and still without number, is kept a secret by every Chamber of Commerce west of the Pecos River, they and earthquakes both). From Santa Fe the troops moved down into Old Mexico; the last Minutes (of a little book in the archives of the Grand Lodge of Missouri) recorded a Communication in Santa Cruz, Old Mexico, July 15, 1848. The soldiers they had left behind formed another regimental Lodge at Santa Fe, and it worked as No. 87 until Aug. 14, 1848.

The Masons left permanently behind in New Mexico after peace was declared petitioned the Grand Lodge of Maryland for a Dispensation; receiving no reply it petitioned Missouri, but again received no immediate answer. Then, under date of May 8, 1851, it received a Charter from Missouri under the name of Montezuma, No. 109, and it was instituted the following Aug. 22. This Lodge stood alone in an unsettled empire now divided among thirteen Grand Jurisdictions; a thousand miles from the fringes of the frontier; among an unfriendly, Spanish-speaking, Roman Catholic populace, with Pueblo, Apache, and Navajo Indian peoples along the edges, and at the same time the rendezvous for some of the wildest, most intractable white adventurers on the Continent. But it flourished, and for many years was Lodge, social center, meeting hall, church—it had even to make a cemetery, since the local Romanists would permit no Protestant burials. But the Lodge was strong because in its membership were the men who were to make new Mexico, first as a Territory, then as a State, among them being Christopher Carson, St. Vrain, Lafayette Head.

Carson himself later was to become a charter member of the Lodge at Taos, founded in 1859. Carson's brother in law, Charles Bent, first Territorial Governor, svas also a member in Taos, and it was there that he was assassinated by a crew of Indians, drunken white men, etc., egged on by the notorious Padre Martinez. Carson himself had once been a runaway apprentice, who "took to the Santa Fe Trail," and who found "out there" the country "for which he was born" a gentleman, a man of great dignity, intelligent, a master authority on Indians, an heroic leader in battle, one of the truly great men of the West—who had nothing in common with the boys' books hero "Kit" Carson who was supposed to go about scalping Indians and carrying two revolvers. He was loved, trusted, admired by everybody, Spanish Americans, Indians, and "Americans," even by the beaver trappers, "the mountany men," a tougher, wilder, more primitive set than the Apaches themselves.

NOTE. On page 181 it is stated that Carson died in Santa Fe. This was an error. He died of heart failure aged 58, on his ranch on the Los Animas, in Texas. Masons employed a Spanish-American native to bring his body back for re-interment in his old home, at Taos N. M., in a small plot of ground near his house. In the long tedious return with the body the Spanish-Ameriean began to have supernatural fears. His peneil-written memo of expenses is in the vault of the Grand Lodge of New Mexieo at Albuquerque; in an entry probably unique in Masonie expense accounts is the explanation of what he did to allay his fears: $5.00 for an image of the Virgin Mary!
See Saint Domingo.
Thory (Acta Latomorum i, page 339) says that a Degree by this name is cited in the nomenclature of Fustier, and is also found in the collection of Viany.
The Hebrew word, sometimes pronounced sap-peer. The second stone in the second row of the High Priest's breastplate, and was appropriated to the Tribe of Naphtali, The Chief Priest of the Egyptians wore round his neck an image of truth and justice made of sapphire.
Although originally only an Arab tribe, the word Saracens was afterward applied to all the Arabs who embraced the tenets of Mohammed. The Crusaders especially designated as Saracens those Mohammedans who had invaded Europe, and whose possessions of the Holy Land gave rise not only to the Crusades, but to the organization of the military and religious orders of Templars and Hospitalers, whose continual wars with the Saracens constitute the most important chapters of the history of those times.

[What is Freemasonry] [Leadership Development] [Education] [Masonic Talks] [Masonic Magazines Online]
Articles] [Masonic Books Online] [E-Books] [Library Of All Articles] [Masonic Blogs] [Links]
What is New] [Feedback]

This site is not an official site of any recognized Masonic body in the United States or elsewhere.
It is for informational purposes only and does not necessarily reflect the views or opinion
of Freemasonry, nor webmaster nor those of any other regular Masonic body other than those stated.

DEAD LINKS & Reproduction | Legal Disclaimer | Regarding Copyrights

Last modified: March 22, 2014