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entered apprentice degree

CHAPTER I

MASONIC  TREATISE with an ELUCIDATION on the RELIGIOUS AND MORAL BEAUTIES of FREEMASONRY

W. Finch, Canterbury


 

First Section

 

1.  Bro. SW as Free and Accepted Masons where did you and I first meet,

            Upon the Square,

 

2.  Where hope to part,

            Upon the Level,

 

3.  Why so,

            As Masons we ought always so to do with all mankind, but more particularly as obligated Brother Masons,

 

4.  From whence came you,

            From the west,

 

5.  Where going,

            To the east,

 

6.  What induced you to leave the west to go to the east,

            In search of a Master and of him to gain instruction,

 

7.  Who are you that want instruction,

            A Free and Accepted Mason,

 

8.  What kind of man ought Free and Accepted Masons to be,

            A free Man born of a free Woman, brother to a King, and companion to a beggar if a Mason,

 

9.  Why free,

            That the habits of slavery might not contaminate the true principles on which Masonry is founded,

 

10.  Why born of free woman,

            Because the Masons who were chosen by KS to work at the Temple, were declared free, and exempt from all imposts, duties, and taxes for them and their descendants; they had also the previlidge (sic) to bear arms. Since the destruction of the Temple by Nebuchadnezzar, they were carried into captivity with the ancient Jews, but the good will of Cyrus gave them permission to erect a Second Temple, having set them at liberty for that purpose. It is since this epoch that we bear the name of Free-masons,

 

11.  Why brother to Kings or companion to beggars if Masons,

            A King is here reminded that that (sic) although a crown may adorn his head, and a sceptre his hand, yet the blood in his veins is derived from the common parent, and no better than that of his meanest subject; the wisest Senator, or the most skilful [sic] Artist, is taught, that equally with others he is exposed by nature to infirmity, sickness, and disease, that unforeseen misfortunes may impair his faculties, and level him with the meanest of his species:

men of inferior talents are here reminded (who are not placed by fortune in such exalted stations) to regard their superiors with peculiar esteem, when they behold them divested of pride, vanity, and external grandeur, condescending in a badge of innocence and bond of friendship, to trace wisdom and follow virtue, assisted by those who are of a rank beneath them;

virtue is true nobility;

wisdom is the channel by which virtue only can distinguish us as Masons. (Preston),

 

12.  Another reason why free born,

            It treats of that grand festival which Abraham made at the weaning of his son Isaac. --

When Sarah saw Ishmael, the son of Hagar, the Egyptian bond-woman, teazing (sic) and perplexing her son, she remonstrated with Abraham, saying, put away that bond-woman and her son, for such as they shall not inherit with the free-born;

she speaking as being endowed by divine inspiration, well knowing that from Isaac's loins would spring a great and mighty people, such as would serve the Lord with Freedom, Fervency and Zeal, and she fearing if they were brought up together, Isaac might imbibe some of Ishmael's slavish principles, it being generally remarked that the minds of slaves are much more contaminated than the free born,

 

13.  Why all those equalities amongst us,

            We are all equal by creation, but much more so by the strength of our OB,

 

14.  Generally speaking from whence came you,

            From the Holy Lodge of St. John,

 

15.  What recommendation did you bring from thence,

            I greet you well; The recommendation I brought from the R H (Right Holy), Worthy, and Worshipful Lodge, of St. John, is to great (sic) you well,

 

16.  Any other recommendation,

            A hearty good wish to all brothers and fellows,

 

17.  Since our Brother brought nothing else, what might you come here to do,

            To rule and subdue my passions, to act upon the Square, and make a farther progress with Masons,

 

18.  By this I presume you are a Mason,

            So taken [ and accepted among Brothers and Fellows. -- Emulation ].

 

19.  How am I to know that, (I approve of you),

            By being often approved, (( by the regularity of my initiation, repeated trials and approbations, and a willingness at all times to undergo an examination when properly called on. -- Emulation )).

            [ Browne answers this question with: By the regularity of my instruction having been tried proved in sundry Lodges now seek to be proved or disproved by you worshipful. ].

 

20.  Those brothers having given me convinceing (sic) proofs, they are Masons, how do you know yourself to be such,

            By Ss., Ts., and perfect points,

 

21.  What are s . . . s,

            All Ss., Ls., and Ps., are true and proper s . . . s, to know Masons by,

 

22.  What are Ts.,

            Certain regular and friendly Gs., whereby we know Masons in the dark as well as in the light,

 

23.  Will you give me the p . . .  of your en . . . . ,

            Of, At, and On,

 

24.  Of, At, and On what,

            Of my own free will, At the door of the Lodge, and On the P. of a . . . . . or some s . . . .  l . . . . . .,

 

25.  When was you made a Mason,

            When the Sun was in its due meridian,

 

26.  This seems a paradox, how do you reconcile it,

            The earth being globular, the Sun is always in its meridian on some part thereof,

 

27.  Where was you made a Mason,

            In a just and perfect Lodge of Masons,

 

28. What is a Lodge of Masons,

            An assemblage of brethren met to expatiate on the mysteries of the Craft,

 

29.  When met, what makes them just,

            The Holy Bible,

 

30.  What perfect,

            B . . .  or more regularly made Masons,

 

31.  Who made you a Mason,

            The Master, with the Wardens and Brethren,

 

32.  In what part of the Lodge,

            In the East,

 

33.  For why was you made a Mason,

            For the sake of the Ss., and to be brought from darkness into light,

 

34.  Have Masons and Ss.,

            They have; many valuable ones,

 

35.  Where do they keep them,

            In their hs,

 

36.  To whom do they reveal them,

            To none but Brothers and Fellows,

 

37.  How do they reveal them,

            By Ss., Ts., and many Ws.,

 

38.  How do they get at them,

            By the help of a Key,

 

39.  Does that Key hang or lie,

            To hang, and not to lie, (sic)

       [ In Browne, the question is more in conformity with the answer:

            Is that key said to hang or lie?

            It is said to hang and not to lie. -- A. H. ]

 

40.  Why is the preference given to hanging,

            It ought always to hang in a Brother's defence, and never to lie, to his prejudice,

 

41.  What does it hang by,

            The thread of Life, or 9 I . . . . . or a S . . . .  the distance between the Gtl. and Pctl.,

 

42.  Why so nearly connected to the heart,

            That being the index of the mind, ought to utter nothing, but what the heart truly dictates,

 

43.  This seems to be a curious kind a of (of a) Key, can you inform me what metal it's made of,

            No metal whatever, but a tongue of good report, which ought always to treat a brother in his absence as in his presence, and when that unfortunately cannot be done with honour and propriety, to adopt that distinguishing virtue of our science, [ which is silence. --  Browne ].E.A.

 

Second Section

 

1.  Bro. SW where was you first p . . p . . d to be made a Mason,

            In my H.

 

2.  Where next,

            In a room adjoining the Lodge,

 

3.  Who brought you there,

            A friend, whom I afterwards found was a Brother Mason,

 

4.  What did your friend cause to be done unto you,

           

            For further particulars on this head the inquisitive Mason is referred to our regular Lodges,

 

5.  Why divested of m.,

            That I might bring nothing offensive or defensive into the Lodge, to disturb the harmony thereof,

 

6.  Second reason why,

            As I was then in a state of p.v.y., it was to remind me to Relieve all true worthy of my fellow creatures without injury to myself, or connections,

 

7.  Third reason,

            At the building of KST there was not heard the sound of any Axe, hammer, or m . .c tool, throughout that whole building,

 

8.  Is it possible so stately and superb an edifice could be finished without the sound of any m . . . l  tool,

            It was for the stones were hewn in the Quarry, there carved, marked, and numbered, the Timber was fell (sic) and prepared in the Forest of Lebanon, there carved, marked, and numbered also, from thence floated down to Joppa, from thence conveyed to Jerusalem, and there put together in this wonderful manner,

 

9.  Why were m . . . . l  tools prohibited,

            That the Temple should not be polluted,

 

10.  Why prepared at so great a distance,

            The better to distinguish the excellency of the Craft, for although prepared at so great a distance, yet when put together at Jerusalem each part fitted with that perfect exactness as to make it reasonable more the work of the Grand Architect of the universe, than that of human skill,

 

11.  Why was you h . . . -w . . . ,

            If I had refused to have experience((d)) the usual ((method)) of initiation I might be led out of the L. without being able to discover its form,

 

* * *  Items 12 through 25 (page 6) were not in the copy of the MS used for this retyped edition * * *

            It may be assumed that the missing items closely approximated the standard Ritual.

 

26.  Was you admitted,

            I was,

 

27.  On what,

            On the P. of [ a sword ] or some S. I. [extended to my n.l.b.  --  Browne ].

 

28.  For why was this so applied,

            Not only to intimidate but likewise to intimate to me that I was engaged upon what was serious, solemn and awful, [ Browne here adds: --  likewise to distinguish the sex. ].

 

29.  Having gained your admission in the L., what was the first thing the Master requested of you,

            To K. d . . .  and receive the benefit of a p . . . r,

 

30.  Please to repeat it,

            Here follows the p . . . r,

 

31.  After so doing, what was next requested of you,

            In whom I put my trust,

 

32.  Your answer,

            In God,

 

33.  The Master's reply to you,

            As I relied on this grand pillar I might safely rise, follow my leader, and fear no danger, for one whose faith was so surely grounded could have nothing to fear,

 

34.  How did your leader then proceed,

            Being neither naked nor clothed, . . .  barefoot nor shod, but in a right humble, halting, moving posture, the JW friendly took me by the right hand, led me up the N., past the Master in the E., down the S, and delivered me over to the SW in the W.,

 

35.  Why was you led round the L. in so conspicuous a manner,

            It was figuratively to point out to me the seeming state of poverty (in?) which I was received, on the real miseries of which state if realized, if I did but for one moment seriously reflect, it could not fail to have that impression on my mind as to induce me never to shut my ears unkindly to the cries of the distressed, but listening with attention to their sufferings, pity would flow from my heart, attended with that relief their necessities required, and my own abilities would admit.

            It was likewise to convince the Brethren that I was the Candidate who had been well and worthily recommended, regularly proposed, properly prepared, and then came as a fit and proper person to be made a Mason,

 

36.  This naturely (sic) induces me to inquire who are proper persons to be made Masons,

            Free men of mature age, sound judgment and strict morals,

 

37.  Why Free Men,

            That the vicious habits of slavery might not corrupt the principles of the free-born,

 

38.  Why of mature age,

            To be better enabled to judge for themselves as well as the fraternity at large,

 

39.  Why of sound Judgment and strict morals,

            That both by precept and example they might be the better enabled to enforce a due obedience to all our excellent rules and orders,

 

40.  Being thus delivered over to the SW in the W, how did he next proceed,

            He taught me to advance by t . . .  irregular s . . . s  pointing out t . . .  more regular,

 

41.  What do these s . . . s  consist of,

            Right lines and angles,

 

42.  What do they morally teach us,

            Upright lives and well squared actions,

 

43.  Being brought before the Master in the E what did he request of you,

            What I came there to do,

 

44.  (Your) Answer,

            To be made a Mason,

 

45.  Did he make a Mason of you,

            He did, and that in due form,

 

46.  Please to describe that due form,

            L. k. b. b., B. e. within the S., R. H. on the H. B. while my l. was employed in supporting a p. (of) C. extended to my n. l. b. in the form of a S.,

 

47.  Why your B. erect,

            Because I was t---- a---- [ Neither Browne, Vancouver, nor Emulation gives any clue to this. "Taught always" may perhaps be suggested, or "then about".  --  A. H. ]  to be Obligated within the same,

 

48.  Why l. k. b. b.,

            That being the weakest part of the body was to represent the most superficial part of the Craft,

 

49.  Why did you k. at all,

            On my b. k. I was first taught to ((address)) my ((Creator)), and in that ((posture)) the Craft thought proper to receive me amongst them,

 

50.  Why was your l. h. supporting the Cs,

            As they were then an emblem of torture to my body, so might the recollection prove to my conscience, if at any time hereafter I should ever so far forget the   (pledge?)   of my OB as to violate the s . . . s,

 

51.  Why was the r. h. on the H B,

            As a pledge of my fidelity and unshaken faith of these holy doctrines,

 

52.  In this solemn attitude of (body?) what was you then engaged in,

             To take that G. and solemn O. of an EAP,

 

53.  Please to repeat that solemn O,

            Here follows that great and solemn O.,

 

54.  What was not (next?) requested of you,

            He desired me to confirm the same in the usual manner, etc.

 

55.  What did the Master then do,

            He friendly took me by the l. h. and said, Rise, newly O. Brother, etc,

 

56.  What (did he) next desire to know of you,

            What I required most in that situation,

 

57.  No doubt you told him,

            To be brought to L.

 

58.  Was that complied with.

            It was.

 

Third Section

   

1.  Bro. SW, being O. as a Mason, was you entrusted with anything,

            I was,

 

2. With what (deliver them in due form),

            TT, --((S., T., and W., of an EAP. - Browne)), (complied with in due form),

 

3.  Being O. and entrusted, was you invested with anything,

            The distinguishing badge of Masons, which I was Invested with, by order of the Master by the SW, telling me it was more antient and honorable than the Star and Garter, the Thistle or Rose, or any order whatever under the Sun;

it being the badge of innocence and bond of friendship, and giving at the same time a suitable charge upon the occasion,

 

4.  Being O., entrusted and invested, in what part of the Masonís L. was you placed,

            In the NE,

 

5.  Why there,

            That being the place where Operative Brethren lay the first stone of every magnificent structure, I was therefore placed there as a fit representative of that stone, being then in the first, and most superficial part thereof,

 

6.  What did you there receive,

            The first and most impressive part was the constant perusal of the Holy Bible, and the three grand duties of morality;

to GOD, as never mentioning His Name, but with that awe and reverence due from a creature to his Creator;

to esteem Him our chief good, and to implore His aid in all our undertakings. To our Neighbour, as acting with him upon the square in all our different connections To ourselves, by avoiding every degree of intemperance, unbecoming the dignity of the human species.

 

7.  Being thus placed and the b. taken from y. o. what was you then enabled to discover,

            The t . . . e  g . . . t  l . . . s, by the assistance of the t . . . e  lesser,

 

8.  Name the t . . . e  g . . . t  l . . . s,

            B. C. and S.

 

9. Their uses,

            The first is the grand standard of all our actions, and the others equally the same in respect to their moral and Masonic tendency,

 

10.  Name the .  .  . l .  .  .  . r - - - -, (?)

            T . . . .  l . . . . . l . . . . .  (?)

            [There is some confusion here. The following apparently is intended: - - ďName the three lesser lightsĒ  - -  but this is redundant. Vancouver has the following:

                        ďWhat are the three lesser lights?

                          Three candles illuminated.Ē - -  A. H.]

 

11.  For what purpose,

            To light us to, at, and from labour,

 

12.  How were they situated,

            E, S and W - - The Sun, the glory of the Lord, first appears in the east, gains its meridian in the south, and disappears in the west.

 

13.  Was there any in the N.,

            There was not,

 

14.  Why not,

            The Sun being then below our horizon, darts no rays from thence, to this our hemisphere,

 

15.  Who do those t . . . e  g . . . t  l . . . s  represent,

            The Sun, Moon, and Master Mason of the L.

 

16.  Why Sun, Moon, and Master Mason; why is the Master Mason put in competition with those two grand luminaries,

            As it is by the blessed influence of two of them that we as men are enabled to perform those duties the Craft require[s] of us,

 

17.  Assisted by those t . . . e  g . . . t  l . . . s, what was you enabled to farther discover,

            The form of the L.

 

18.  What form,

            An Oblong,

 

19.  How Long,

            From E. to W.

 

20.  How Broad,

            Between N. and S.

 

21. How Deep,

            From surface to the centre,

 

22. How High,

            To the Heavens,

 

23.  Why this amazing extent,

             Not only to demonstrate the universality of Masonry, but the unbounded influence of its admirable laws,

 

24.  On what ground does a Masonís L. rest,

            On H. G.

 

25.  Why so,

            Because the first L. was evidently so,

 

26.  What made that ground H.

            The Three Grand Offerings thereon offered,

 

27.  Name those Three Grand Offerings,

            The ready compliance of Abraham to the Will of the Almighty in preparing his only son as a sacrifice to His command, when it pleased the Lord to substitute a more agreeable victim in his stead.

Secondly, for the many pious prayers of King David, when it pleased the Lord to stop the pestilence which then raged among his people, owing to his inadvertently having them numbered.

Thirdly, the many costly offerings and ejaculations of King Solomon, at the consecration of the Temple, these three did then and have ever since rendered the ground work of Masonís Ls. holy.

 

28.  How is a Masonís L. situated,

            Due S and W,

 

29.  Why so,

            In commemoration of that ancient custom,

 

30.  For which we as Masons assign three reasons; please to inform me the first,

            The Sun, the glory of the Lord, appears in the east, and disappears in the west,

 

31.  Name the second,

            In commemoration of the establishment, and propagation of the holy gospel,

 

32.  Name the third and grand reason,

            Whenever we seriously contemplate upon the beautiful works of the creation, and all things therein and thereon contained, how ready and cheerful ought we to be to adore the great Creator and Governor of the universe, who, from the earliest period of time, has never left himself without a living witness among men:

we find as early as Abel bringing a more acceptable offering than his brother Cain;

of Noah being a just and upright man;

of Jacob wrestling with an Angel, and obtaining a blessing for himself and posterity;

but we never find and place set apart for divine worship till after the happy deliverance of the children of Israel from their Egyptian bondage, which it pleased the Lord to accomplish with an high hand and outstretched arm, under the conduct of His faithful servant Moses. And as they were then to become a great and mighty people, and inherit the promised land, the Lord thought proper to reveal to them the three most excellent institutions, and as a repository for the books and tables of the Law, as well as a place for the solemnization of divine worship, Moses caused a tent or tabernacle to be erected in the wilderness, which tent or tabernacle contained the Ark of the covenant, wherein was deposited the two tables of stone, containing the Law of God, which was given to Moses  upon Mount Sinia (sic);

this tent or tabernacle was the model of that magnificent temple, built upon Mount Moriah, by that wise and learned Prince K. S., whose regal spendour and unparalleled lustre, far transcends our ideas. This is the third, last and grand reason which Masons have why all Churches, Chapels and places of divine worship as well as Masonís well formed regular constituted Ls. are or ought so to be.

 

33.  What supports a Masonís L.

            Three great Pillars,

 

34.  What called,

            Wisdom, Strength, and Beauty.

 

35.  Why so,

            The universe is the Temple of that Deity whom we serve;

wisdom, strength, and beauty are around His throne as pillars of his work, for His wisdom is infinite, His strength is omnipotent, and His beauty shines forth in all His works in cemetry (sic)  and order;

He hath expanded the heavens as a canopy, the earth He hath planted as His foot stool;

He crowneth the heavens with stars, as a diadem, and in His hand He extendeth the power and glory;

the Sun and Moon are messengers of His will, and all His law is concord;

the Pillars which support our Ls. are emblems of this divine power,

 

36.  Who do they represent,

            SKI - - HKT and HAB,

 

37.  For what reason,

            The first for his great wisdom in erecting that noble Masonic pile for that glorious purpose to which it was appropriated. - - The second for that great strength in supporting the same with men and materials;

- - and the last, for that curious and cunning workmanship in beautifying and adorning the same.

 

38.  As we have no orders in architecture known by such names, to which do Masons refer them,

            The three most celebrated in those days, Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian.

 

39.  What is the covering of a Masonís L.,

            [The] clouded canopy of divers colours [even the Heavens. - - Emulation].

 

40.  How hope to attain the summit of the same,

            By the help of the three theological virtues, commonly depicted in Masonsí Ls. by a Ladder,

 

41.  What is the Ladder called,

            Jacobís Ladder.

 

42.  Why so,

            Jacob was the beloved son of Rebecca, the wife of Isaac, and she knowing there was a peculiar blessing resting with Isaac, was resolved by strategem [sic] (in which she succeeded) to obtain it for her favorite son Jacob, though by birth-right it belonged to her first-born, Esau. Jacob was no sooner in possession of his aged fatherís blessing, than he was obliged to fly from the wrath of his brother, who had purposed in his heart to slay him, not only for having supplanted him in his aged fatherís blessing, but his birth-right.  - - Rebecca was no sooner informed of Esauís intention, but she prevailed upon Jacob to go down to Pedenarum, a distant country in the land of Messopotamia (sic),  and there marry one of the daughters of Laban, Rebeccaís brother, but as Jacob sojourned thither, a remarkable circumstance attended his first dayís travel;

being weary and benighted he laid himself down to rest, taking the cold earth for his bed, a stone for his pillow, and the clouded canopy of heaven for a covering. It was here, in a vision, he saw a ladder resting on the earth, with its top extended to the heavens, with the angels of God ascending and descending thereon;

those ascending were representatives of those going up to the throne of grace, to receive divine commissions, to bring down and propagate on the face of the earth for the use of mankind;

those descending were representatives of those commissioned by that power. - - It was here that the Almighty was pleased to make a solemn legal covenant with Jacob, that if he would in His ways and keep His statutes, He would not only bring him back in peace and plenty to his fatherís house, but would exalt his posterity in a wonderful manner, - - We therefore not only find that Jacobís favorite son was, by Pharoahís [sic] appointment, raised to the highest degree of exaltation, but the children of Israel became the mightiest and most powerful nation under the Sun.

 

43.  How many Staves or Rounds is it composed of,

            Staves and rounds innumerable, which point out as many moral virtues, but principally three, which are Faith, Hope, and Charity. - - Here follows a short definition of the same: -

 

44.  Explain them,

            Faith, is the foundation of justice, the bond of amity, and chief support of society;

we live and walk by faith, by it we have an acknowledgement  [sic] of a supreme being, have access to the throne of grace, are justified, accepted, and finally received;

a true christian faith is the evidence of things not seen, but the substance of things hoped for;

this maintained, and well answered, by walking according to our Masonic profession, will turn faith into a vision, and bring us to bliss to all eternity where we shall be eternally happy with God, the grand geometrician of the universe, whose Son died for us, and rose again that we might be justified through faith, in his most precious blood, - -

Hope is an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast (sic);

then let a firm reliance of the Almightyís goodness animate our endeavours, and enable us to fix our hope within the limits of His most gracious promises, so shall success attend us;

if we believe a thing impossible, our despondency may render it so, but if we persevere to the end, we shall finally overcome all difficulty. - -

Charity, oh! how lovely in itself, it is the brightness (est?) and greatest ornament of our Masonic profession;

benevolence rendered by heaven-born charity is an honour to the nation from whence it springs, is nourished, and cherished;

happy is the man who hath sown in his breast the seeds of benevolence, the produce of which is love and charity;

he envieth not his neighbour, he believeth not a tale when reported by a slanderer, he forgiveth the injuries on men, and blotteth them out from his recollection;

then let us remember we are Masons and Men;

ever be ready to give (if able) to the needy, and in the most pressing time of necessity let us not withhold a liberal hand, so shall the heart-felt pleasure reward our labours, and the produce of love and charity will most assuredly follow.

 

45.  Where does this Ladder extend, and on what does it rest,

            It extends in the heaves (heavens), and resteth on the Holy Bible.

 

46.  Why on that H B,

            By the doctrines therein contained we are taught to believe in the dispensations of divine Providence, which belief strengthens our faith, and enables us to ascend the first step;

this faith naturally creates in us a hope of becoming partakers of those promises therein recorded, which hope enables us to ascend the second step;

but the third and last being charity, comprehends the whole;

and that Mason who possesses this virtue in its ample sense, may justly be said to have arrived at the summit of the science, figuratively speaking, to an ethereal mansion, veiled from mortal eye by the starry firmament, but more emblematically depicted in our Lodges by the s . . . n  s . . . s, without which number of regularly made Masons, no Lodge can be perfect, neither can any gentleman be legally initiated therein.

 

Fourth Section

 

1.  Bro. SW what does the inward contents of a Masonís L. consist of,

            Ornaments, Furniture,  and Jewels,

 

2.  Name the Ornaments,

            The Mosaic pavement, the blazing star, and tassalated (sic) border.

 

3.  Their situation,

            The Mosaic pavement is the beautiful ground work of a Masonís L., the blazing star is the glory in the centre, and the indented, or tassalated (sic)  border, is the beautiful skirt work around the same.

 

4.  Explain them,

            The Mosaic work may justly be called the beautiful ground work of a Masonís L., by reason of its being variegated and chequered, which points out to us the diversity of objects which beautify and adorn the Creation; the animate as well as the inanimate parts thereof.

The blazing star in the centre refers us to that grand luminary the Sun, which overshadows the earth by its benign influence, and dispenses its blessings to mankind in general, and gives light, life, and motion, to all things here below.

The indented, or tassalated (sic) border, refers us to the Planets in their several revolutions, which form a beautiful skirt work round that grand luminary the Sun, as the other does to a Masonís L.

 

5.  Why was Mosaic work introduced in Masonís Ls.,

            As the steps of men are trod in various and uncertain incidents of life, as our days are chequered by a strange contrariety of events, and as our passage through this existence, though sometimes attended by prosperous circumstances, yet they are oftentimes beset with a multitude of evils;

hence are our Lodges furnished with Mosaic work, to remind us of the precariousness of our situation here in life, today our feet may tread in prosperity, to-morrow we may totter on the uneven paths of weakness, temptation, and adversity.

Then, since such emblems are before our eyes, we are morally taught to boast of nothing, but to walk uprightly and with humility before GOD;

for such is our existence here in life, there is no station of it on which pride can be stabily founded.

All men have birth, but some are born to more elevated stations of life than others, yet when in the grave, all are upon the level, Death destroying all distinctions:

then since our feet tread on this Mosaic work, let our ideas return to the original from whom it copies, and let us ever act according to the dictates of right reason, to cultivate harmony, maintain charity, and live in unity and brotherly love.

 

6.  Name the Furniture of a Masonís L.

            Bible, Cs. and S.

 

7.  Their uses,

            The Bible is to rule and govern our faith, and on it we O. our Brethren, so is the Cs. and S., when united, the same to our lives and action.

 

8.  From whom do they derive, or more properly belong,

            The Bible derives from God to man, the Cs. to the GM, and the S. to the whole Craft.

 

9.  Why the Bible from God to Man,

            Because the Almighty has been pleased to reveal more of His divine will in that holy book, than He has by any other means, either by the light of nature, the aid of science, or reason with all her powers.

 

10.  Why the Cs. to the GM,

            That being the chief instrument made use of, in the formation of all plans and designs, it is therefore appropriated to the GM in particular, he being the Chief Governor of the Craft.

 

11.  Why the S. to the whole Craft,

            They being O. within the same, are consequently ever after bound to act thereon.

 

12.  Name the Movable Jewels,

            The S., L., and P.R.

 

13.  Their uses,

            The S. is to try and adjust all irregular corners of buildings, and to assist in bringing rude matter into due form;

the L. is to lay Levels and prove horizontals;

the P.R. is to try and adjust all uprights while fixing [them] on their proper basis.

 

14.  These seem to [be] mere emblems of labour, for why are they called Jewels,

            Because they have a moral tendency, which render them Jewels of an inestimable value.

 

15.  Please to give their moral tendency,

            The S. teaches us morality and justice; the L., equality, the P.R. integrity.

 

16.  By whom worn in a Masonís L.,

            The Master and Wardens.

 

17.  What is the Master distinguished by,

            By the S.

 

18.  Why so,

            As it is by the S., that all rude matter is brought into due form, so it is by the same, that all animosities are made to subside, should any there be, that order and good fellowship might be rendered perfect and compleat.

 

19.  What is the SW distinguished by,

            By the L.

 

20.  For what reason,

            That being an emblem of equality, points out the equal measures that officer is bound to pursue, in conjunction with the Master, in well ruling and governing the Brethren of the L.

 

21.  What is the JW known by,

            By the P.R.

 

22.  Why so,

            That being an emblem of uprightness, points out that upright conduct, he is bound to pursue, in conjunction with the Master, and his Brother Warden, in the well-ruling and governing the Brethren of the L.;

but more particularly, in a due examination of strange Visitors, least [lest] by his neglect any unqualified person should be enabled to impose on the L., and the Brethren innocently led to violate their O.,

 

23.  Why are they called Movable Jewels,

            Because they hang pendant, by the Master, and Wardens, and are transferrable [sic] to their successors, at proper times and seasons,

 

24.  Name the Immovable Jewels,

            The T - - - - - - board, [Vancouver has ďTressel Board;Ē Browne uses ďTracing Board,Ē as does Emulation.] Rough and perfect Ashlars.

 

25.  Their uses,

            The Tracing Board is for the Master to drawn (sic) his designs [up]on, the Rough Ashlar is for the EA to mark and indent on, and the Perfect Ashlar for the more expert Fellowcrafts, to try and adjust their Jewels on,

 

26.  There next follows a beautiful illustration between the Furniture of a Masonís L. and the Immovable Jewels, please to give it,

            As the Tracing Board is for the Master to draw his designs upon, the better to enable the younger Brethren, and the more expert Fellowcrafts, to carry on the intended building with order, regularity, and propriety; so may the Bible be justly deemíd the true Tracing Board of the grand Architect of the universe, who in that H. B. hath laid down such divine laws, and moral plans, that were we conversant therein, and adhered thereto, it would bring us to a building, not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.

The Rough Ashlar is a stone rough as when taken from [the] Quarry, but by the skill and ingenuity of the workmen it is modelled [sic] and brought into due form, which represents the mind of man in its infancy, rough and uncultivated like this stone, but by the kind care and instruction of his parents or guardians, in endowing his mind with a liberal education, he is thereby become moralized, and rendered a fit member for society.

The Perfect Ashlar is a stone of a true die square, which can only be tried by the Cs. and S., which represents the mind of man, after a well spent life in acts of piety and devotion, which can [in] no otherwise be tried but by the S. of Godís words, and C. of his own conscience,

 

27.  Why are [they] called Immovable,

            Because they lay open in the L. for every Brother to moralize [up]on,

 

28.  Before we had the convenience of such well formed Ls., where did our Brethren used to meet,

            Upon the highest hills, the Lowest Vales, even the Valley of Jehoshophat [sic], or some such place.

 

29.  Why so high, so low, and so very secret,

             The better to see and observe all that might Ascend or Descend; in case an Eavesdropper should appear, the T . . . r  might have timely notice to acquaint the Master, by which means the L. might be Closed, the Jewels put by [away], and thereby prevent any unlawful intrusion,

 

30.  Our Ls. being thus finished, furnished, and decorated, to whom were they dedicated,

            To K. S.,

 

31.  He being a Hebrew, and dying long before the christian area [era], to whom do we, as christians, dedicate them,

            To St. John the Baptist,

 

32.  Why to him,

            He being the forerunner of our Saviour, preached repentance, and drew the first line of the gospel,

 

33.  Had St. John the Baptist and equal,

            He had; St. John the Evangelist,

 

34.  Why is he equal to the Baptist,

            He coming after the former, finished by his learning what the other began by his zeal, and drew a line parallel, etc. etc. [Browne here adds a Monitorial section].

 

Fifth Section

 

1.  How many points are there among Masons,

            Three.

 

2.  Name them,

            Chief Point, Principal Point, and Point within a Circle round which the Master and Brethren cannot materially err.

 

3.  Name the chief point,

            To endeavor to be happy [with] ourselves, and to communicate that happiness to others.

 

4.  Name the principal,

            Brotherly love, relief, and truth.

 

5.  Explain them,

            By the exercise of brotherly love we are taught to regard the whole human species as one family, the high, the low, the rich and poor, created by one Almighty Being, and sent into the world for the support and protection of each other;

on this principle Masonry unites men of every country, sect, and opinion, and conciliates true friendship among those who might otherwise have remained at a perpetual distance.

Relief is the next tenet of our profession; to relieve the distressed is a duty incumbent on all men, but more particularly among Masons, who are linked together in one indissoluble chain of sincere affection;

to soothe the unhappy, to sympathize with their misfortunes, to compassionate their miseries, and to restore peace to their troubled minds, is the grand aim we have in view. On this basis we establish our friendship, and form our connection.

Truth is a divine attribute, and the foundation of all Masonic virtue; to be good men and true is the first lesson we are taught at our initiation;

hence hypocrisy and deceit are supposed to be unknown among us; sincerity and plain dealing are our distinguishing characteristics, while the heart and tongue join in promoting each otherís welfare, and rejoicing in each otherís prosperity. -- (Preston).

 

6.  Explain the point within a circle round which the Master and Brethren cannot materially err,

            In all Masonsí well-formed regularly constituted Ls. there is a certain point within a circle round which the Master and Brethren cannot materially err;

this circle is supported on the sides by two perpendicular parallel lines, which represent the two Saint Johns (sic), on the periphery of which rests the Holy Bible, which contains the law and prophets, and by going round the same we must unavoidably touch on both of those parallel lines, as well as the Holy Bible, and were we as conversant therein and adherent thereto, as those two grand parallels were, it would bring us to Him who will not deceive us, neither will He suffer deception, and whilst a Mason keeps himself thus circumscribed, it is impossible he can materially err.

 

7.  How many original Signs have we,

            Four,

 

8.  Name them,

            G . . t . . l, P . .c . . l, M . . n . . l, and P . . d . . l.

 

9.  Explain them,

            (Here these grand originals are fully explained): For further particulars the industrious Mason is referred to our regular Lodges.

 

10.  To what do they farther (sic) allude,

            The four cardinal virtues.

 

11.  Name them,

            Temperance, Fortitude, Prudence, and Justice.

 

12.  Explain them,

            Temperance teaches us a due restraint of our passions, which renders us tame and governable, and frees us from the allurements of vice, or the contracting of any licentious habits; the contracting of which, etc. etc. [whereby he might, unwarily, be led to betray his trust, and subject himself to the penalty contained in his O. -- Emulation] alluding to the G . . t . . l. --

Fortitude is that quality or strength of mind whereby a person undertakes dangerous actions with calmness and serenity, pursues virtuous designs unshaken by menaces, discouragements, or temptations, and endures affliction and pain without any signs of fear and dismay. The practice of patience and fortitude is adhered to by the Indians with that dispassionate obstinacy, that some of them pass their whole life in nakedness, one while hardening their bodies in the frozen rigours and piercing colds of Mount Caucasus, and at others exposing themselves to the flames without so much as a sign or groan, whereby they obtain the reputation and title of wise men, which alludes to the P . . c . . l. --

Prudence may be defined an ability of judging what is best both of ends and means. The idea of prudence includes due consultation, in a right manner, and for a competent time, that the resolution taken up may be neither too precipitate, nor too slow. To the perfection of prudence may be added a natural sagacity, presence of mind, or a ready turn of thought, etc. which alludes to the M . . n . . l. --

Justice is a constant desire to give every one his just due without distinction, or a habit by which the mind is disposed and determined to act according to equity. Distributive justice is concerned in matters of government and beneficence. Communicative justice in [is?] conversant in matters of commerce and changing of things. Legal justice resides in the state or monarch, who often supercede [sic]  communicative and distributive justice, for the good of the common wealth.

As justice in a great measure constitutes the real food man, so it ought to be the constant practice of every good Mason, etc. [never to deviate from the minutest principles thereof, ever having in mind the time he was placed at the N. E. part of the L., f . . t  formed in a s . . . e, b . . . y  e . . .t, when he received that excellent injunction from the W. M. to be just and upright in all things: -- Emulation] which alludes to the P . . d . . l.

 

Sixth Section

 

1.  How many different degrees are there in Craft Masonry,

            Three in Craft Masonry, which are generally received under different appellations, the privileges of each are distinct, and particular means are adopted to preserve those privileges to the just and meritorious. --

Honor and probity are recommendations to the first class, in which the practice of virtue is enforced, and the duties of morality inculcated, while the mind is prepared for social converse, and a regular process in the principles of knowledge and philosophy.

Diligence,  assiduity, and application, are qualifications for the second class, in which an accurate elucidation of science, both in theory and practice, is given, human reason is cultivated by a due exertion of our rational and intellectual powers;

nice and difficult theories are explained, fresh discoveries are produced, and those already known are beautifully embellished.

The third class is confined to the selected few whom truth and fidelity have distinguished, whom years and experience have improved, and whom merit and abilities have entitled to preferment;

with them the ancient land marks of the Order are preserved, and from them we may learn and practice these necessary and instructive lessons which at once dignify the art, and qualify its professors; to convince the uninstructed of its excellence and utility. This is the established mode of our government when we act in conformity to our rules;

hence true friendship is cultivated between different ranks and degrees of men, hospitality is promoted, industry rewarded, and ingenuity encouraged. [Preston].

 

2.  Which of them are you,

            An E A P,

 

3.  How long did you serve,

            Seven years is the stipulated time, but less will suffice if found worth of preferment,

 

4.  How did you serve,

            With Freedom, Fervency, and Zeal.

 

5.  What are the emblems of Freedom, Fervency, and Zeal.

            Chalk, Charcoal, and Clay.

 

6. Why so,

            Nothing is more free for the use of man than chalk, which seldom touches but leaves its trace behind;

nothing more fervent than charcoal, for when well lighted no metal is able to resist its force;

nothing more zealous than clay, or mother earth, who will kindly open her arms to receive us when all our friends forsake us.

 

7.  If you had a son, what would you denominate him,

            Lewis,

 

8.  What is his duty to his aged parents,

            To bear the heavy burden in the heat of day, when by reason of his parents age and infirmity, they ought to be exempt from, and thereby render the close of their days happy and comfortable.

 

9.  What is his privilege for this,

            He had [this privilege], to be ranked upon the Masonic level with Kings and Princes.

 

10.  What is, or ought to be, our distinguished characteristic,

            Honor and Virtue, and when honor and virtue are banished [from] the land, may they ever be found safely lodged in the Masonic Repository.

 

11.  Why are we called Free-Masons?

            Because we are free to, and free , from.

 

12.  Free to and free from what,

            Free to good fellowship and ought to be free from vice.

 

13.  If a man of that description was missing, where might we hope to find him,

            Between the Square and Compass.

 

14.  Why there,

            By acting on the one, we are sure to be found within the other.

 

15.  Have you seen a Master-Mason to-day,

            I have the pleasure so to do now.

 

16.  How is, or ought [he] be clothed,

            In the old Clothing.

 

17.  What is that,

            O - - -, and A - - -,

            [Neither Emulation, Browne, nor Vancouver give any clue to this phrase. An old French Ritual, however, had the following:

                        ďAvez-vous vu le Grand Maitre? -- Oui.

                        Comment est-il veru? -- Díor et díazur.Ē

                        In other words, gold and azure. In early 18th century England, the Master was said to be              clothed in yellow jacket and blue breeches.

                        cf. Oliver, Hist. Landmarks, I. 170. -- A. H.]

 

18.  Why these colours,

            Because they are Royal, and such as were worn by the antient eastern Kings and Princes, and such as sacred history informs us composed the Veils of the Temple.

 

19.  How are Masons to be known in the Day,

            By seeing a Brother and Observing, the Sn.

 

20.  How in the Night,

            By hearing a Brother and receiving the T.

 

21.  How blows the wind,

            Favourably, due E. and W.

 

22.  Why favourably,

            To cool and refresh men at labour.

 

23.  Why due E.

            In commemoration of that miraculous wind which wrought the happy deliverance of the antient Jews from their Egyptian bondage, and proved the fatal overthrow of Pharoah [sic] and his host, in his attempt to follow them.

 

24.  What time is it,

            H.T.

 

25.  What is to be then done.

            To call men from labour to refreshment and see they come on again in due time, that the master and brethren may have both pleasure and profit thereby [Browne].

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