Enciclopédia Mackey – EUCLID ~ EZRA

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In the Year of the World, 3650, Anno Mundi, which was 646 years after the building of King Solomon’s Temple, Euclid, the celebrated geometrician, was born. His name has been always associated with the history of Freemasonry, and in the reign of Ptolemy Soter, the Order is said to have greatly flourished in Egypt, under his auspices. The well-known forty-seventh problem of his first book, although not discovered by him, but long credited to Pythagoras, has been adopted as a symbol in Masonic instruction.


All the old manuscript Constitutions contain the well known legend of Euclid, whose name is presented to us as the Worthy Clerk Euclid in every conceivable variety of corrupted form. The legend as given in the Dowland Manuscript is in the following words:

Moreover, when Abraham and Sara his wife went into Egypt, there he taught the Seven Sciences to the Egiptians and he had a worthy Scoller that height Ewelyde, and he learned right well, and was a master of all the vij Sciences liberal. And in his days it befell that the lord and the estates of the realms had so many sons that they had gotten some by their wives and some by other ladies of the realm, for that land is a hot land and a plenteous of generation. And they had not competent livelode to find with their children; wherefore they made much care. And then the King of the land made a great Counsel and aparllament to witt, how they might find their children honestly as gentlemen; And they could find no manner of good way And then they did cry through all the realms. if their were any man that eould inform them, that he should come to them, and he should be so awarded for his travail that he hold him pleased.

After that this cry was made, then came this worthy Clarke Ewclyde and said to the King and to all his great lords: If yee will, take me your children to govern, and to teach them one of the Seven Scyences wherewith they may live honestly as gentlemen should, under a condicion, that yee will grant me and them a commission that I may have power to rule them after the manner that the science ought to be ruled. And that the King and all his counsel granted to him alone, and sealed their communion. And then this worthy Doctor took to him these lords’ sons, and taught them the science of Geometric in practice, for to work in stones all manner of worthy works that belongeth to buildings churches temples, castles, towers, and manors. and all other manner of buildings; and he gave them a charge on this manner.

Here follow the usual “charges” of a Freemason as given in all the old Constitutions; and then the legend concludes with these words: “And thus was the science grounded there; and that worthy Mr. Ewelyde gave it the name of Geo7netrie. And now it is called through all this land Masonry” (see Brother Hughan’s Old Charges, edition of 1872, page 26).

This legend, considered historically, is certainly absurd, and the anachronism which makes Euclid the contemporary of Abraham adds, if possible, to the absurdity. But interpreted as all Masonic legends should be interpreted, as merely intended to convey a Masonic truth in symbolic language, it loses its absurdity, and becomes invested with an importance that we should not otherwise attach to it.

Euclid is here very appropriately used as a type of geometry, that science of which he was so eminent a teacher; and the myth or legend then symbolizes the fact that there was in Egypt a close connection between that science and the great moral and religious system which was among the Egyptians, as well as other ancient nations, what Freemasonry is at the present day-a secret institution, established for the inculcation of the same principles, and inculcating them in the same symbolic manner. So interpreted this legend corresponds to all the developments of Egyptian history, which teach us how close a connection existed in that country between the religious and scientific systems. Thus Kenrick (Ancient egypt i, 383) tells us that “when we read of foreigners in Egypt being obliged to submit to painful and tedious ceremonies of initiation, it was not that they might learn the secret meaning of the rites of Osiris or Isis but that they might partake of the knowledge of astronomy, physic, geometry, and theology.” The legend of Euclid belongs to that class of narrations which, in another work, Doctor Mackey calls The Mythical Symbols of Freemasonry.


Spoken or written praise of a person’s life or character. Freemasonry delights to do honor to the memory of departed Brethren by the delivery of eulogies of their worth and merit, which are either delivered at the time of their burial, or at some future period. The eulogy forms the most important part of the ceremonies of a Sorrow Lodge. But the language of the eulogist should be restrained within certain limits; while the veil of charity should be thrown over the frailties of the deceased, the praise of his virtues should not be expressed with exaggerated adulation, slavish flattery Eulogy, just and affectionate is one thing; panegyric, suggesting hypocritical compliment, is something else.


A king of Eleusis, who founded, about the year 1374 B.C., the Mysteries of Eleusis. His descendants, the Eumoipidae, presided for twelve hundred years over these Mysteries as Hierophants.


It is usual, in the most correct Masonic instruction, especially to name eunuchs as being incapable of initiation. In none of the old Constitutions and Charges is this class of persons alluded to by name, although of course they are comprehended in the general prohibition against making Freemasons of persons who have any blemish or maim. However, in the Charges which were published by Doctor Anderson, in his second edition (see Constitution, 1738, page 144) they are included in the list of prohibited candidates. It is probable from this evidence that at the time it was usual to name them in the point of obligation above referred to; and this presumption derives strength from the fact that Dermott, in copying his Charges from those of Anderson’s second edition, added a note complaining of the Moderns for having disregarded this ancient law, in at least one instance (see Brother Lawrence Dermott’s Ahiman Rezon, edition of 1778). The question is, however, not worth discussion, except as a matter of interest in the history of our ceremonies, since the legal principle is already determined that eunuchs cannot be initiated because they are not perfect men, “having no maim ox defect in their bodies.”


One of the largest and most celebrated rivers of Asia. Rising in the mountains of Armenia and flowing into the Persian gulf, it necessarily lies between Jerusalem and Babylon. In the advanced degrees it is referred to as the stream over which the Knights of the East won a passage by their arms in returning from Babylon to Jerusalem.


From the Greeli, xxpfatS, meaning a discovery. That part of the initiation in the Ancient Masteries which represented the finding of the body of the god or hero whose death and resurrection was the subject of the initiation. The Euresis has been adopted in Freemasonry, and forms an essential incident of Craft instruction.


An appellation or name at times given to the west end of the Lodge.


The acclamation or cry used in the French Rite of Adoption.


The gospel belonging to the so-called Ordre du Temple at Paris, and professedly a relic of the real Templars. Some believe in its antiquity; but others, from external and internal evidence, fix its date subsequent to the fifteenth century. It is apparently a garbled version of Saint John’s Gospel. It is sometimes confounded with the Leviticon but, though bound up in the same printed volume, it is entirely distinct.


See Saint John the Evangelist.


The second Degree in the Druidical system. Of the three Degrees the first was the Bards, the second Evates or Prophets, and the third Druids or Sanctified Authorities.


Meaning in French, Sect of the Enlightened. According to Thory (Acta Latomorum i, 31?) a society presumed to be a branch of Weishaupt’s Illumines that existed in Italy.


A German expression meaning League of Doers of Good, a term taken from the Greek word fVfpefmS, a benefactor. A secret order after the manner of the Illuminati. It was founded in Silesia about 1792, by a certain Zerboni of Glogau, Lieut. von Leipzinger, the merchant Contessa, Herr von Reibnitz, and five others; that Fessler worked in it- that it used Masonic forms. Some of the members were imprisoned at Breslau in 1796, and about 1801 the society became defunct.


An evergreen plant is a symbol of the immortality of the soul. The ancients, therefore, as well as the moderns, planted evergreens at the heads of graves. Freemasons wear evergreens at the funerals of their Brethren, and cast them into the graves. The acacia is the plant which should be used on these occasions, but w here it cannot be obtained, some other evergreen plant, especially the cedar, or box, is used as a substitute (see Acacia).


There is a very ancient city in Portugal, of 1200 population, bearing the name of Evora. Quintus Sertorius took it 80 B.C. The Roman antiquities are unrivaled. The aqueduct erected by Sertorius has at one end a marvelous architectural tower rising high above the city, perfect in its condition as when built, 70 B.C. In 1147, King Alfonso I, of Portugal, instituted the Order of the New Militia in consequence of the prowess exhibited by the troops in the siege of Lisbon against the Moors. When they conquered Evora in 1166, the king by decree changed their name to Knights of Evora.


A candidate is said to be exalted, when he receives the Degree of Holy Royal Arch, the seventh in American Freemasonry. Exalted means elevated or lifted up, and is applicable both to a peculiar ceremony of the Degree, and to the fact that this Degree, in the Rite in which it is practiced, constitutes the summit of ancient Freemasonry.

The rising of the sun of spring from his wintry sleep into the glory of the vernal equinox was called by the old sun-worshipers his exaltation; and the Fathers of the Church afterward applied the same term to the resurrection of Christ. Saint Athanasius says that by the expression, “God hath exalted him,” Saint Paul meant the resurrection. Exaltation, therefore, technically means a rising from a lower to a higher sphere, and in Royal Arch Masonry may be supposed to refer to the being lifted up out of the first temple of this life into the second temple of the future life. The candidate is raised in the Master’s Degree, he is e:rmalted in the Royal Arch. In both the sit embolic idea is the same.


It is an almost universal rule of the modern Constitutions of Freemasonry, that an examination upon the subjects which had been taught in the preceding Degree shall be required of every Brother who is desirous of receiving a further Degree; and it is directed that this examination shall take place in an open Lodge of the Degree upon which the examination is made, that all the members present may have an opportunity of judging from actual inspection of the proficiency and fitness of the candidate for the advancement to which he aspires.

The necessity of an adequate comprehension of the mysteries of one Degree, before any attempt is made to acquire a further one, seems to have been duly appreciated from the earliest times; and hence the 13th Article of the Regius Manuscript requires that if a Master has an Apprentice he shall teach him fully, that he may know his Craft ably wherever he may go. (see lines 239 to 244). But there is no evidence that the system of examining candidates as to their proficiency, before their advancement, is other than a modern improvement, and first adopted not very early in the last century.


This is sometimes done after the ballot for a candidate, by presenting the box first to the Junior Warden, then to the Senior, and lastly to the Master, each of whom proclaims the result as dear or foul. This order is adopted so that the declaration of the inferior officer, as to the state of the ballots, may be confirmed and substantiated by his superior.


The due examination of strangers who claim the right to visit, should be entrusted only to the most skillful and prudent Brethren of the Lodge. And the examining committee should never forget, that no man applying for admission is to be considered as a Freemason, however strong may be his recommendations, until by undeniable evidence he has proved himself to be such. All the necessary forms and antecedent cautions should be observed. Inquiries should be made as to the time and place of initiation, as a preliminary step the Tiler’s pledge, of course, never being omitted.

Then remember the good old rule of “commencing at the beginning.” Let everything proceed in regular course, not varying in the slightest degree from the order in which it is to be supposed that the information sought was originally received. Whatever be the suspicions of imposture, let no expression of those suspicions be made until the final decree for rejection is uttered. And let that decree be uttered in general terms, such as, “I am not satisfied,” or “I do not recognize you,” and not in more specific language, such as, “You did not answer this inquiry,” or thou are ignorant on that point,” The candidate for examination is only entitled to know that he has not complied generally with the requisitions of his examiner. To descend to particulars is always improper and often dangerous.

Above all, never ask what the lawyers call leading questions, which include in themselves the answers, nor in any manner aid the memory or prompt the forgetfulness of the party examined, by the slightest hints. If he has it in him it will come out without assistance, and if he has it not, he is clearly entitled to no aid. The Freemason who is so unmindful of his obligations as to have forgotten the instructions he has received, must pay the penalty of his carelessness, and be deprived of his contemplated visit to that society whose secret modes of recognition he has so little valued as not to have treasured them in his memory.

And, lastly, never should an unjustifiable delicacy weaken the rigor of these rules. Remember, that for the wisest and most evident reasons, the merciful maxim of the law, which says that it is better that ninety-nine guilty men should escape than that one innocent man should be punished, is with us reversed, and that in Freemasonry it is better that ninety anal nine true men should be turned away from the door of a Lodge than that one cowan should be admitted.


King Arthur’s famous sword, which he withdrew from a miraculous stone after the unavailing efforts of 200 of his most puissant barons. Hence, Arthur was proclaimed King. When dying, Arthur commanded a servant to throw the sword into a neighboring lake, but the servant twice eluded this command. When he finally complied, a hand and arm arose from the water, seized the sword by the hilt, waved it thrice, then sinking into the lake, was seen no more.


Excavations beneath Jerusalem have for years past been in progress, under the direction of the English society, which controls the “Palestine Exploration Fund,” and many important discoveries, especially interesting to Freemasons, have been made.


A title conferred on the Grand Captain of the Host, and Grand Principal Sojourner of a Grand Chapter, and on the King and Scribe of a subordinate Chapter of Royal Arch Masons in America.


Doctor Oliver ( Historical Landmarks I, 420-8) gives a tradition that at the building of Solomon’s Temple there were several Lodges of Excellent Masons, having nine members in each, which were distributed as follows: six Lodges, or fifty-four Excellent Masons in the quarries; three Lodges, or twenty-seven Excellent Masons in the forest of Lebanon; eight Lodges, or seventy-two Excellent Masons engaged in preparing the materials; and nine Lodges, or eighty-one Excellent Masons subsequently employed in building the Temple. Of this tradition there is not the lightest support in authentic history, and it must have been invented altogether for 3 symbolic purpose, in reference perhaps to the musical numbers which it details.


A Degree which, with that of Super-Excellent blaster, was at one time given as preparatory to the Royal Arch. The latter Degree nova forms part of what is known as Cryptic Masonry. Crypt is a word from the Latin language as well as the Greek, meaning hidden, and frequently applied to a vault or secret chamber.


See Most Excellent


See Right Excellent


See Super-Excellent Masons


In England the Grand Lodge alone can expel from the rights and privileges of Freemasonry. But a subordinate Lodge may exclude a member after giving him due notice of the charge preferred against him and of the time appointed for its consideration.

The name of any one so excluded, and the cause of his exclusion must be sent to the Grand Secretary and to the Provincial or District Grand Secretary if the Lodge be in a Province or District. No Freemason excluded is eligible to any other Lodge until the Lodge to which he applies has been made acquainted with his exclusion, and the cause, so that the Brethren may exercise their discretion as to his admission (Constitutions, Rules 210 and 212). However, it was enacted by the Grand Lodge of England in 1902 that when a member is three years in arrears he ceases to hold membership in his Lodge and can regain his former standing only by submitting a regular petition and passing the ballot (see Book of Constitutions, Article 175).

In the United States of America the expression used as synonymous with Exclusion is striking from the roll, except that the latter punishment is inflicted for non-payment of Lodge dues. The general practice is to suspend for non-payment of dues, the Brother regaining his standing, if there be no other objection to him, by paying the arrearages that he owed.


The exclusiveness of Masonic benevolence is a charge that has frequently been made against the Order; and it is said that the charity of which it boasts is always conferred on its own members in preference to strangers. It cannot be denied that Freemasons, simply as Freemasons, have ever been more constant and more profuse in their charities to their own Brethren than to the rest of the world; that in apportioning the alms which God has given them to bestow, they have first looked for the poor in their own home before they sought those who were abroad; and that their hearts have felt more deeply for the destitution of a Brother than a stranger.

The principle that governs the Institution of Freemasonry, in the distribution of its charities, and the exercise of all the friendly affections, is that which was laid down by Saint Paul for the government of the infant church at Galatia: “As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith” (Galatians vi, 10).

This sentiment of preference for those of one’s own faith, thus sanctioned by apostolic authority, is the dictate of human nature, and the words of Scripture find their echo in every heart. “Blood,” says the Spanish proverb, “is thicker than water,” and the claims of kindred, of friends and comrades to our affections, must not be weighed in the same scale with those of the stranger, who has no stronger tie to bind him to our sympathies, than that of a common origin from the founder of our race. All associations of men act on this principle. It is acknowledged in the church which follows with strict obedience the injunction of the apostle; and in the relief it affords to the distressed, in the comforts and consolations which it imparts to the afflicted, and in the rights and privileges which it bestows upon its own members, distinguishes between those who have no community with it of religious belief, and those who, by worshiping at the same altar, have established the higher claim of being of the household of faith.

It is recognized by all other societies, which, however they may, from time to time, and under the pressure of peculiar circumstances, extend temporary aid to accidental cases of distress, carefully preserve their own peculiar funds for the relief of those who, by their election as members, by their subscription to a written constitution, and by the regular payment of arrears, have assumed the relationship which Saint Paul defines as being of the household of faith.

It is recognized by governments, which, however liberally they may frame their laws, so that every burden may bear equally on all, and each may enjoy the same civil and religious rights, never fail, in the privileges which they bestow, to discriminate between the alien and foreigner, whose visit is but temporary or whose allegiance is elsewhere, and their own citizens.

This principle of preference is universally diffused, and it is well that it is so. It is well that those who are nearer should be dearer; and that a similitude of blood, an identity of interest, or a community of purpose, should give additional strength to the ordinary ties that bind man to man. man, in the weakness of his nature, requires this security by his own unaided efforts, he cannot accomplish the objects of his life nor supply the necessary wants of his existence. In this state of utter helplessness, God has wisely and mercifully provided a remedy by implanting in the human breast a love of union and an ardent desire for society.

Guided by this instinct of preservation, man eagerly seeks communion of man, and the weakness of the individual is compensated by the strength of association. It is to this consciousness of mutual dependence, that nations are indebted for their existence, and governments for their durability. And under the impulse of the same instinct of society, brotherhoods and associations are formed, whose members, concentrating their efforts for the attainment of one common object, bind themselves by voluntary ties of love and friendship, more powerful than those which arise from the ordinary feelings of human nature.


Grand Lodges in the United States have adhered to State lines as the limits of their activities, but this has not been so strictly the custom elsewhere. Some particulars of the situations arising from the contact of different practices may be seen in the following statement of the action taken by the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania against the Grand Orient of France.

At the Annual Grand Communication of the Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of Pennsylvania, held at Philadelphia, December 27, 1924, Right Worshipful Past Grand Master Brother Abraham M. Beitler, Chairman of Committee on Clandestine Lodges in Pennsylvania, presented the following report, when, on motion, the resolutions attached thereto were unanimously adopted.

The Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Louisiana at its fifty-seventh Annual Communication held February, 1869, delivered an address, in the course of which he said:

“It has become my painful duty to bring to your notice the action of the Grand Orient of France, with whom we have for many years been upon the most friendly and brotherly terms of esteem and regard. The Grand Orient of France has aided and assisted this Grand Lodge in times of trouble and anxiety, by her firm adherence to constitutional law and Masonic justice. In the month of December I received from the office of the Grand Orient through the post office an official bulletin containing a decree which certainly surprised me. It has, with a strange perversion, and unaccountable want of consistency, recognized a clandestine body in this city, calling itself the Supreme Council of the Sovereign and Independent State of Louisiana.

“It will become your painful duty to take notice of this action of the Grand Orient of France, and make such decree as in your wisdom may be found expedient and necessary, to sustain the dignity of this Grand Lodge and maintain its authority over Craft Masonry in this Jurisdiction. There can be no divided authority. Upon one principle we are all agreed, and while we have life we will sustain it. The Grand Lodge of Louisiana will never submit to a divided jurisdiction, and in this position she will be sustained by every Grand Lodge in North America, for all are interested alike in sustaining each other. This principle once abandoned, the power of Masonry for good is gone. Discord and confusion will reign supreme, and the sun of Masonry will set in a sea of darkness.”

The Committee on Foreign Correspondence submitted a report on the Grand Orient’s action, with full translations of the decrees and debates relating to its recognition of the “Supreme Council of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite in and for the Sovereign State of Louisiana” and entering into fraternal relations with that clandestine Body. The report concluded with these words:

“This spirit, which seeks to impair the honor and subvert the dignity of this Grand Lodge, will, we doubt not, be properly appreciated by our sister Grand Lodges, and in submitting the following resolutions, your committee feel confident that the Grand Lodge will receive from her American sisters the same sympathy and support which they so generously extended to the Grand Lodge of New York, when her jurisdiction was invaded by the Grand Lodge of Hamburg.” The resolutions offered with the above report were:

  • RESOLVED, I – That all Masonic correspondence and fraternal relations between the Grand Lodge of Louisiana and the Grand Orient of France cease and be discontinued and no Mason oaring allegiance to that Grand Body be recognized as such in this jurisdiction
  • RESOLVED, II – That a duly authenticated copy of the above report and resolution be transmitted to the Grand Orient of France and to all regularly constituted American and European Gralld Lodges. The report and the resolutions were adopted.

In his address at the Annual Grand Communication of the same Grand Lodge, December 27, 1869, the retiring Right Worshipful Grand Master Brother Richard Vaux, said:

“Within the past year, the action of the Grand Orient of France in recognizing a spurious Grand Lodge within the Jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of Louisiana, has been considered by most of the Grand Lodges of the United States. In each case our sister Grand Lodges have denounced this action as un-masonic. New York and Massachusetts have exhaustively discussed the question and acted accordingly. I am most happy to find that the principle the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania has ever proclaimed, that a Grand Lodge must be supreme and sovereign within its jurisdiction, is thus acknowledged. But in the case before us, another principle which this Grand Lodge has maintained is also accepted as Masonic law. We have asserted that one Grand Lodge will not permit any interference, by any other Grand Lodge, with her sovereignty as a Grand Body; that her power within her jurisdiction tolerates no rival; and when an effort is made to that end, it is the solemn duty of all Grand Lodges to protest, and take such other action as the ease demands. The facts are so clear, in this unjustifiable interference in Louisiana, that I deem it proper to state, that all correspondence between the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania and the Grand Orient of France should cease, till the latter recalls its presumptuous interceding with the affairs of our sister Grand Lodge of Louisiana, and yields assent to that paramount principle of American Free masonry, which lies at the foundation of the supreme sovereignty of Grand Lodges of Freemasons in the United States.”

The Grand Master of Louisiana at the fifty-eighth Annual Communication, held February 14, l870, said:

“The Grand Orient of France still maintains the anomalous position which it so unwisely assumed now more than a year ago, and still holds in its embrace a spurious and clandestine body, without any legal title whatever to be called Masonic. From our Brethren in every quarter of the globe come messages of approval of the course taken by our Grand Lodge and in no instance, where the matter of difference has been clearly understood, has Louisiana been condemned for the firm stand she has taken. Even the Supreme Council of England, of the Scottish Rite, has adopted resolutions censuring the Grand Orient of France for having accorded recognition to a spurious body of men, who indeed claim to be Masons, but who have never been elsewhere recognized as such, and who have no legal or proper right to the title, upon so specious and so false a plea as that given by Grand Master Mellinet, and for its improper infringement of the jurisdiction rights of our Grand Lodge.” At that Annual Communication the Committee on Foreign Correspondence in its report said: “The action of our Grand Lodge, suspending fraternal relations with the Grand Orient of France on account of its recognition of the spurious Supreme Council of Louisiana, which has established Symbolic Lodges in our jurisdiction, has been fully sustained at home and abroad. The principle, that the Grand Lodge of each state has exclusive jurisdiction over the symbolic degrees within its territorial limits, is so well established in the United States, that we confidently relied on our sister Grand Lodges extending to us the same generous sympathy and support which New York received when its jurisdictional rights were invaded by the Grand Lodge of Hamburg.

“Nor have we been disappointed; New York led the van in declaring non-intercourse with the foreign invader. Arkansas, California, Kentucky, Missouri, Tennessee, Texas, and Wisconsin have followed its example; Maine, Massachusetts, Connecticut and Ohio have protested in a firm, Eet courteous manner, against the act of the Grand Orient; Vermont and a number of other states have also spoken in terms not to be misunderstood, but we have not yet received official notice of their action. So far as the proceedings received in season for this report give the action of the Grand Lodges or the views of their committees on the subject, we have submitted them without note or comment the able manner in which the question has been discussed from every point of view, precluding any remarks of our own.

“Here, however, we may be permitted to remark that the question is one which appeals to every Grand Lodge, for if the act of the Grand Orient had been permitted to pass unrebuked, the sovereignty of each Grand Lodge would have been endangered, as what is our case today may be theirs tomorrow and in defending our rights they are maintaining their own. yet not the less gratefully do we acknowledge the fraternal spirit which has been displayed in sustaining the action of our Grand Lodge, and, while we regret the occasion ever arose, it is a matter of congratulation that it has shown to the Masonic powers of the world that the Grand Lodges of the United States will submit to no foreign interference with their rights. It has demonstrated that any attempt in that direction will only unite them more closely together in the bonds of Masonic fellowship, and that, while “separate as the billows, they are one as the sea.” The following further comments were made by Brother Beitler:

“Your Committee on Clandestine Lodges in Pennsylvania have within the past month learned that a clandestine body in our State calling itself Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite Universal Free Masonry’ and claiming the right to confer the first three degrees in Freemasonry has been taken under the wind of the Grand Orient of France. The two bodies have entered into formal contract, some of the provisions of which were interesting.

“It provides that the body in our State shall pay annually to the Grand Orient of France the sum of $10, for each active lodge; that it shall buy all diplomas it may require of the Grand Orient at the price of 15 francs each, the diplomas to be on parchment, printed in both English and French. “The body working under the Grand Orient is to have the right to institute new Lodges in the United States wherever it may deem convenient. It shall receive for them warrants issued from the Grand Orient of France, but it is not to be permitted to create Lodges in territories of the United States outside of Pennsylvania with which the Grand Orient of France is in fraternal relations. These territories are stated as being Alabama, Iowa, Minnesota, Rhode Island and New Jersey.

“lt is further provided that should there be at any time in the future a cessation of the relations of the Grand Orient of France with one or more of these states, then the body in Pennsylvania shall have ‘plenitude of action.’

“The body in Pennsylvania is given the right to practice the Scottish Rite including the Symbolic Degrees.

“In the official records of the Grand Orient of France for December, 1923, the Grand Secretary submits a report which was adopted. In it he said:

“‘The Regional Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania was abandoned by the Grand Orient of Spain. They now ask the Grand Orient of France to take it under its wings. You will recall that we entered into relations with the Grand Master of this Grand Lodge through the intermediation of our Brother Beni, Past Master of L’Atlantide…. The correspondence with the Pennsylvania Brethren was through a Brother Gould, Lawyer.’

“We feel that Pennsylvania should with the utmost emphasis denounce this action of the Grand Orient of France. We cannot acknowledge the right of any other Grand Body outside of our Grand Jurisdiction (whether regarded by us as legitimate or not-whether in fraternal relations with us or not) to invade the territory of our Grand Lodge.

“The association which the Grand Secretary of the Grand Orient of France styles the ‘Regional Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania’ and which we have called the ‘Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite Universal Freemasonry,’ is not lawfully in possession of the rights which the Grand Orient attempted to give.

“We deem it our duty to call the matter to the attention of the Grand Lodge. We ask the adoption of the following:

  • RESOLVED, III – That the Grand Secretary forward to each of the Grand Lodges in the United States a copy of this report, calling their attention to the fact that the body which the Grand Orient of France has “taken under its wings is authorized by the Grand Orient of France to create Lodges in every State, excepting Alabama, Iowa, Missouri, Rhode Island and New Jersey, and that its power is to extend to those States if and when the fraternal relations nos existing between the several Grand Lodges of those States and the Grand Orient of France cease.
  • RESOLVED FURTHER – That this Grand Lodge, which has always firmly held and still holds the views expressed by our Right Worshipful Grand Plaster Brother Richard Vaux (set out in the foregoing report) respectfully and confidently asks its sister jurisdictions to adopt those views as fundamental in Freemasonry and requests those Grand Lodges which are in fraternal relations with the Grand Orient of France to give their adherence to those views and sever further relations with the said Grand Orient.

The above resolutions presented by Brother Beitler, Chairman of the Committee on Clandestine Lodges in Pennsylvania, were unanimously adopted by the Grand Lodge of that State (see Territorial Jurisdiction).


Lodges in the eighteenth century and at the beginning of the nineteenth inflicted fines for nonattendance at Lodge meetings, and of course excuses were then required to avoid the penalty. But this has now grown out of use. Freemasonry being considered a voluntary institution, fines for absence are not inflicted, and excuses are therefore not now required. The infliction of a fine would, it is supposed, detract from the solemnity of the obligation which makes attendance a duty. The old Constitutions, however, required excuses for non-attendance, although no penalty was prescribed for a violation of the rule. Thus, in the Matthew Cooke Manuscript (of the fifteenth century) it is said, “that every master of this art should be warned to come to his congregation that they come duly, but if (unless) they may be excused by some manner of cause” (see lines 7404). And in the Regius Manuscript (lines 107-12) it is written: That every master, that is a Mason;

Must ben at the generate congregaeyon
So that he hyt resonebly y-tolde
Where that the semble shall be holde;
And to that semble he must nede gon
But he have a resenabul skwsacyon.


See Grand Lodge


According to Thory (Acta Latomorumi i 312) founded at Stockholm in 1787. It united Magnetism to Swedenborgianism, the religious doctrines of the celebrated Swedish philosopher; it was at first secret, but when it became known it was killed by ridicule.


This term is of frequent use in American Freemasonry. When a lecturer or teacher performs the ceremonies of a Degree for instruction, using generally one of the Freemasons present as a substitute for the candidate, he is said “to exemplify the work.” It is done for instruction, or to enable the members of the Grand or subordinate Lodge to determine on the character of the ritual that is taught by the exemplifies..


The date of the Exodus has been determined by the excavations recently made at Tel elMaskhtta. This is the name of large mounds near Tel el-Reber, excavated by M. Naville for the Egyptian Exploration Fund, wherein he found inscriptions showing that they represent the ancient City of Pithom or Succoth, the “treasure-cities” (Exodus i, 11), and that Ramses II, was the founder. This was the Pharaoh of the oppression. The walls of the treasurechambers were about six hundred and fifty feet square and twenty-two feet thick. From Pithom, or Succoth, where the Israelites were at work, they started on their exodus toward Etham (Khetam), then to Pihachiroth (Exodus xiv, 2), and so on north and east. The exodus took place under Meneptah II, who ascended the throne 1325 B.C., and reigned but a short period. It was along the isthmus that the Egyptian army perished pursuing the retreating Israelites as they crossed between Lake Serbonis and the waters of the Mediterranean, amidst the “sea of papyrus reeds,” the yam suph, that has often proved disastrous to single or congregated travelers (see S. Birch, LL.D., in Ancient History from the Monuments, Brugsch-Bey’s lecture, 17th September, 1874; but more particularly the discoveries above referred to, in Fresh Lights, etc., by A. H. Sayce).


From the Greek combining word, ego, meaning outside. Public, not secret, belonging to the uninitiated (see also Esoteric).


In Lodges of the French Rite, there are two officers called First and Second Experts, whose duty it is to assist the Master of Ceremonies in the initiation of a candidate. In Lodges of Perfection of the Scottish Rite, there are similar officers who are known as the Senior and Junior Expert.


Conferred in three grades, and cited in Fustier’s collection (see Thory, Acta Latomorum i, 312).


Mentioned in Fustier’s collection (see Thory, Acta Latomorum i, 312).


Very early after the revival of Freemasonry, in the beginning of the eighteenth century, pretended expositions of the ritual of Freemasonry began to be published.

There have been several American expositions but the compilers have only been servile copyists of Morgan, Bernard, and Allyn. The undertaking has been, and continues to be, simply the pouring out of one vial into another.

The expositions which abound in the French, German, and other continental languages, are not attacks upon Freemasonry, but are written often under authority, for the use of the Fraternity.

The usages of continental Freemasonry permit a freedom of publication that would scarcely be tolerated by the English or American Craft.


Expulsion is, of all Masonic penalties, the most severe that can be inflicted on a member of the Order, and hence it has been often called a Masonic death. It deprives the expelled of all the rights and privileges that he ever enjoyed, not only as a member of the particular Lodge from which he has been ejected, but also of those which were inherent in him as a member of the Fraternity at large. He is at once as completely divested of his Masonic character as though he had never been admitted, so far as regards his rights, while his duties and obligations remain as firm as ever, it being impossible for any human power to cancel them. He can no longer demand the aid of his Brethren nor require from them the performance of any of the duties to which he was formerly entitled, nor visit any Lodge, nor unite in any of the public or private ceremonies of the Order. He is considered as being without the pale, and it would be criminal in any Brother, aware of his expulsion, to hold communication with him on Masonic subjects.

The only proper tribunal to impose this heavy punishment is a Grand Lodge. A subordinate Lodge tries its delinquent member, and if guilty declares him expelled. But the sentence is of no force until the Grand Lodge, under whose jurisdiction it is working, has confirmed it. And it is optional with the Grand Lodge to do so. or, as is frequently done, to reverse the decision and reinstate the brother. Some of the Lodges in this country claim the right to expel independently of the action of the Grand Lodge, but the claim in Brother Mackey’s opinion is not valid. He held that the very fact that an expulsion is a penalty, affecting the general relations of the punished Brother with the whole Fraternity, proves that its exercise never could with propriety be entrusted to a Body so circumscribed in its authority as a subordinate Lodge. Besides, the general practice of the Fraternity is against it. The English Constitutions vest the powers to expel exclusively in the Grand Lodge. A Private Lodge has only the power to exclude an offending member from its own meetings.

All Freemasons, whether members of Lodges or not, are subject to the infliction of this punishment when found to merit it. Resignation or withdrawal from the Order does not cancel a Freemason’s obligations, nor exempt him from that wholesome control which the Order exercises over the moral conduct of its members. The fact that a Freemason, not a member of any particular Lodge, who has been guilty of immoral or un-masonic conduct, can be tried and punished by any Lodge within whose jurisdiction he may be residing, is a point on which there is no doubt.

Immoral conduct, such as would subject a candidate for admission to rejection, should be the only offense visited with expulsion. As the punishment is general, affecting the relation of the one expelled with the whole Fraternity, it should not be lightly imposed for the violation of any Masonic act not general in its character. The commission of a grossly immoral act is a violation of the contract entered into between each Freemason and his Order. If sanctioned by silence or impunity, it would bring discredit on the Institution, and tend to impair its usefulness. A Freemason who is a bad man is to the Fraternity what a mortified limb is to the body, and should be treated with the same mode of cure he should be cut off, lest his example spread, and disease be propagated through the constitution.

Expulsion from one of what is called the higher Degrees of Freemasonry, such as a Chapter or an Encampment, does not affect the relations of the expelled party to Blue Masonry. A Chapter of Royal Arch Masons is not and cannot be recognized as a Masonic Body by a Lodge of Master Masons by any of the modes of recognition known to Freemasonry. The acts, therefore, of a Chapter cannot be recognized by a Master Mason’s Lodge any more than the acts of a literary or charitable society wholly unconnected with the Order.

Besides, by the present organization of Freemasonry, Grand Lodges are the supreme Masonic tribunals. If, therefore, expulsion from a Chapter of Royal Arch Masons involved expulsion from a Blue Lodge, the right of the Grand Lodge to hear and determine causes, and to regulate the internal concerns of the Institution, would be interfered with by another Body beyond its control. But the converse of this proposition does not hold good. Expulsion from a Blue Lodge involves expulsion from all the other Degrees; because, as they are composes of what Brother Mackey here terms Blue Masons, the members could not of right sit and hold communications on Masonic subjects with one who was an expelled Freemason.


An expression used in the ceremonies of Royal Master, a Degree of the American Rite, and intended to teach symbolically that he who comes to ask and to seek Divine Truth symbolized by the True Word, should begin by placing himself under the protection of that Divine Power who alone is Truth, and from whom alone Truth can be obtained. Of Him the cherubim with extended wings in the Holy of Holies were a type.


The extent of a Freemason’s Lodge is said to be in height from the earth to the highest heavens; in depth, from the sur,’ace to the center; in length, from east to west; and in breadth, from north to south. The expression is a symbolic one, and is intended to teach the extensive boundaries of Freemasonry and the in terminal extension of Masonic charity (see Form of the Lodge).


The name of the First Degree of the Rite d’Orient, or East, according to the nomenclature of M. Fustier (see Thory, Acta Latomarum i, 31 ).


The eternal qualifications of candidates for initiation are those which refer to their outward fitness, based upon the exhibited moral and religious character, the established reputation, the frame of body, the constitution of the mind, and social position. Hence they are divided into Moral, Religious, Physical, Mental, and Political for which see Qualifications of Candidates.

The expression in the instruction, that “it is the internal and not the external qualifications that recommend a man to be made a Freemason,” it is evident, from the context, refers entirely to “worldly wealth and honors,” which, of course, are not to be taken into consideration in inquiring into the qualifications of a candidate.


A Lodge is said to be extinct which has ceased to exist and work, which is no longer on the registry of the Grand Lodge, and whose Charter had been revoked for misuse or forfeited for non-use.


The same as Special Communication (see Communication).


From the Latin and applied to that which is outside, and thus said among the Craft to be not regularly made; clandestine. The word is now obsolete in this signification, but was so used by the Grand Lodge of England in a motion adopted March 31, 1735, and reported by Anderson in his 1738 edition of the Constitutions (page 182). “No extraneous brothers, that is, not regularly made, but clandestinely, . . . shall be ever qualified to partake of the Mason’s general charity.”


Used in the Constitution of the Royal Order of Scotland for expulsion. “If a brother shall be convicted of crime by any Court of Justice, such brother shall be permanently extruded” (see Section 29). Not in use elsewhere as a Masonic term.


See All Seeing Eye


See Temple of Ezekiel


In Hebrew, iRK-U t:R eben hahezel, meaning the stone of departure, namely, a mile-stone. n old testimonial stone in the neighborhood of Saul’s residence, the scene of the parting of David and Jonathan, and the mark beyond which the falling of Jonathan’s arrow indicated danger (see First Samuel xx, 19). Hence, a word adopted in the honorary Degree that is called the Mason’s XVife and Daughter.


There are two persons named Etra who are recorded in Scripture.

  1. Etra, a leading priest among the first colonists who came up to Jerusalem with Zerubbabel, and who is mentioned by Nehemiah (xii, i); and,
  2. Ezra, the celebrated Jewish scribe and restorer of the law, who visited Jerusalem forty-two years after the second temple had been completed. Calmet, however, says that this second Ezra had visited Jerusalem previously in company with Zerubbabel. Some explanation of this kind is necessary to reconcile an otherwise apparent inconsistency in the English system of the Royal Arch, which makes two of its officers represent Ezra and Nehemiah under the title of scribes, while at the same time it makes the time of the ceremony refer to the laying of the foundation of the second Temple, and yet places in the scene, as a prominent actor, the later Ezra, who did not go up to Jerusalem until more than forty years after the completion of the building. It is more probable that the Ezra who is said in the work to have wrought with Joshua, Haggai, and Zerubbabel, was intended by the original framer of the ceremony to refer to the first Ezra, who is recorded by Nehemiah as having been present; and that the change was made in the reference without due consideration, by some succeeding author whose mistake has been carelessly perpetuated by those who followed him. Dr. George Oliver (see Historical Landmarks ii, 428) attempts to reconcile the difficulty, and to remove the anachronism, by saying that Esdras was the scribe under Joshua, Haggai, and Zerubbabel, and that he was succeeded in this important office by Ezra and Nehemiah. But the English ceremonies make no allusion to this change of succession; and if it did, it would not enable us to understand how Ezra and Nehemiah could be present as scribes when the foundations of the second Temple were laid, and the important secrets of the Royal Arch Degree were brought to light, unless the Ezra meant is the one who came to Jerusalem with Nehemiah. Brother Mackey suggested that there is e confusion in all this which should be rectified.
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