Freemasonry is German?

Discussion in 'History and Research' started by hanzosbm, Jul 28, 2016.

  1. Glen Cook

    Glen Cook G A Cook Site Benefactor

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    Hmm. The rituals with which I’m familiar actually spell out the moral lesson that is being taught.

    That the story is fictional has no bearing on whether it teaches a moral lesson. I suspect there is no cultural belief system that does not use legends and myths to teach moral lessons. Even the story of Job falls in this category, does it not?

    In my rituals, the system is not illustrated by charges.

    I would commend to your study the morality plays of the ancient guilds.
     
  2. Winter

    Winter Premium Member

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    Are you saying there is no morality lesson in the Hiramic legend?
     
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  3. Elexir

    Elexir Registered User

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    In a temprance fraternity I used to be a member there was a strong knights templar influence in the rituals.
    Did the templars drink alchol? Most likley yes. So why use templar symbolism in a temprance order? Maybe the value isnt in the historical facts but rather in the myth that is used.

    An initatiary fraternity is not focused on historical facts but rather uses histories and myths to convay something more...
     
  4. Winter

    Winter Premium Member

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    I believe anyone that is looking to Masonic ritual for historical facts or accuracy are fooling themselves as much as anyone who look to religious works for the same.
     
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  5. Luigi Visentin

    Luigi Visentin Registered User

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    I have little time so I will answer one by one. It could take some days.

    I have not talked about Hiramic legend but about the Legend of the Craft, that is Regius Poem and about one hundred of following manuscripts. But lets talk about the Hiramic legend as it is a 18th century product, that is of the beginning of modern Freemasonry. This is not only my opinion but the one of the most qualified scholars that have studied it. The first trace is in the "Masonry dissected" of 1730. In the Legend of the Craft Hiram architect apparently is not even cited. Hiram the artificer appears only in the manuscripts of Spencer family (together with the name of his father !!!!) which are pretty recent (the oldest is the Inigo Jones manuscript which date is very uncertain as it varies from 1697 to 1725). Therefore it is difficult to affirm that its morality lesson starts from ancient time. On the other side I have seen that Hiram's tragic death tale (what happend after the death has been created by our 18th century Brothers) is an adaptation of a well known European legend about a saint of the catholic church (or a knight, depending from the version as there are many, including one were the poor "Hiram" was both a monk and a knight) who is ... the catholic protector of Stonemasons!
    Did ancient Brothers know this legend? Yes, as I have written "apparently is not even cited". Its story is, in reality, hidden in the part where the Legend of the Craft tells about saint Alban and exactly when it is detailled the increase in the salary that Alban obtained for the Masons. Why it is there it is long to explain as it take many pages.
     
  6. JamestheJust

    JamestheJust Registered User

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    I think that one of the keys is in the occurrence of two Hirams in Masonic legend. Was there a shortage of names? Is Hiram a title?

    As a parallel there were two Horus - Horus the Elder and Horus the Younger. They were not relatives being separated by a great period of time.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  7. Glen Cook

    Glen Cook G A Cook Site Benefactor

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    Well, the Hiramic legend certainly is a legend of the Craft. So you agree it teaches a moral lesson?

    Also, we find the legends of the Craft developing in the 1658 indenture of the Lodge at Scoon that the “uniforme communitie and wnione “ of stonemasons had its origins in King Solomon ‘s Temple.

    We also have Noachite Freemasonry referenced by Anderson in 1723. Those familiar with RAM ritual are aware this legend teaches moral lessons as well.

    I think perhaps you meant to reflect on legends of the beginnings of the Craft, rather than the Legend of the Craft, such as what has been called the York Legend, the claim That stone masons had been given a charter by Athelstan GL MS 1. Or perhaps the claim in the Regius MS that stomasonry was invented by Euclid, or the Cooke MS that the Craft was antediluvian. However, the Regius certainly sets out rules for moral behaviour: poaching work, not undertaking work that cannot be finished (a concept unknown to current contractors).

    As to date or the Third Degree, the London newspaper, The Flying Post is relevant. The text is known as a ‘Mason’s Examination’. By this time, 1723, the catechism was much longer and the text contained several pieces of rhyme, particularly noting :

    ‘An enter’d Mason I have been, Boaz and Jachin I have seen; A Fellow I was sworn most rare, And Know the Astler, Diamond, and Square: I know the Master’s Part full well, As honest Maughbin will you tell.’

    Further, the Cooke MSv references “And the son of the King of Tyre was his master mason.”

    Hiram Abiff is also found in Anderson ‘s 1723 Constitutions. The 1738 mentions his death.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2019
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  8. Luigi Visentin

    Luigi Visentin Registered User

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    Yes, but it is not ancient, but modern. What I meant was exactly what you say that is
     
  9. Luigi Visentin

    Luigi Visentin Registered User

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    Yes but it is not of ancient Freemasonry but from modern one. The reference in the Cooke, for example
    is not referred to Hiram the artificier. Hiram the artificier was son of Urias the Israelite (Inigo Jones Ms) who does not appear in the older version of the Legend about the beginnings.

    What I meant was exactly what you say, that is I was referring to the
    which, however is only one. In other words the one that you call York Legend is the same of Regius and of all the other manuscripts and tells one only story which, however, claims that was Nimrod, who was a Mason too, who gave to Masons the first charges. However I would be grateful if you could help me to give a name at this legend as in many place is called "Legend of the Craft", but you could be right and as I'm translating my book I would like to use the term which is the most correct.

    I'm not in any rite, therefore I'm not familiare with RAM, but I'm sure, for other reasons, that Noachite Freemasonry is a product of Anderson & Company indipendently from its contents. The reference to the "indenture of the Lodge at Scoon of 1658", which I did not know, is interesting and I would be interested to know why the cited phrase of the Mason’s Examination is so interesting for you. For my reasearches it was interesting particularly the word maughbin, which in other texts is defined as Matchpin, Mahabyn, Machbenah and Magboe or simply M.B.. I do not think that the original word was hebraic however as it is indicated in some researches.
     
  10. JamestheJust

    JamestheJust Registered User

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    >I'm not familiare with RAM

    It is many years since I was active in Royal Ark Mariners, but what has stayed in my memory is the proposition that RAM dates from before humans had a volume of sacred lore/law. As far as I know, humans have always had gods and been instructed/ruled by them. Where does RAM come from if it predates all VSLs?

    >I do not think that the original word was hebraic

    I recall an account (by Christopher Knight?) that the 3rd degree words are actually ancient Egyptian. But it is much better not to look too closely at ancient Egypt as it makes one long for the genuine third degree ritual.
     
  11. Glen Cook

    Glen Cook G A Cook Site Benefactor

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    Then your statement, “ I have studied a lot the Legend of the Craft and my conclusions are that it tells a story and with no a moral intent or teaching.” refers to what you call “ancient masonry.” I don’t know how you define the term “ancient.” To be clear, though, the discussion is about speculative, not operative masonry.

    The Scoon reference was in regard to an earlier reference for the Solomonic legend.
     
  12. Luigi Visentin

    Luigi Visentin Registered User

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    Only to clarify: basically for me "antients" are before English civil war.

    About the difference between "operative and speculative", this is pretty complicated. In the Matthew Cooke Ms, for example, is written:

    And after that was a worthy king in England that was called Athelstan, and his youngest son loved well the science of geometry, and he wist well that handcraft had the practice of the science of geometry so well as masons, wherefore he drew him to council and learned [the] practice of that science to his speculative, for of speculative he was a master, and he loved well masonry and masons. And he became a mason himself, and he gave them charges and names as it is now used in England, and in other countries.

    If we consider this text, the "speculative" component existed long time before the 1717. But what sound strange to me is the idea that once there were the "operatives" and then the "speculatives": how it is possible to affirm this with certainty without knowing which was the real job of the "operative"? I have an answer about this job that allows me to affirm that, anciently, both the operative part and the speculative one existed together even if with a different purpose. For example the "speculative" mentioned in the Cooke was mainly dedicated to improve the operative part. Anyway this could be an argument for another thread, therefore I will not proceed further on this.
     
  13. Glen Cook

    Glen Cook G A Cook Site Benefactor

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    Athelstan and masons is considered a myth.

    Since you define ancient masonry as before the English Civil war, do we not have moral lessons taught at least for some 50 years per Aichetson’s Haven and the Lodge of Edinburgh?
     
  14. Luigi Visentin

    Luigi Visentin Registered User

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    Also the origin in the guilds of real stonemasons is a myth: unfortunately there is no evidence of this. Also the Worshipful Company of Masons of London has no trace of any connection with Freemasonry and also in Scotland there is no evidence that the oldest minutes or the Schaw Statutes were addressed to real stonemasons. As I have written it is not possible to state exactly if the story told is true or is a fictional novel on an historical background. In both case the citation of Athelstan in what you call York Legend, is correct and in the right place, while legend of the meeting in York in 926 (at least as it is reported in many old books) is not correct as York was not among Atelsthan possessions in that year. For all other information about, including the part about the "son" of Athelstan, I suggest you to wait when my book will be ready (the whole part take more than a chapter).

    This is not what I have written. I have written that the Legend of the Craft tells a story and its moral part is in the Charges. This does not means that in the Lodges were not taught moral lessons but, in case, it is not possible to affirme that they were the same of actual ones. To complete my answer, my hypothesis, supported from the (unfortunately few) documents available is that from end of civil war till around mid of 18th century Freemasonry allowed the entrance in the Freemasonry of persons coming from many different experiences because the ancient Brothers basically decided to cancel the operative part. The "speculative Fremasonry" in the modern sense started therefore likely together with the modern Freemasonry that is from end of 17th and beginning of 18th century, not without the opposition of the real "antients". For example the Briscoe Pamphlet of 1724 and The Plain Dealer, of the same year, accuse Anderson and his collaborators to try to modify deeply Freemasonry in the name of a more "popular" version based on the claim of alleged connection to ancient rites, united with a certain libertine behaviours. Same as above, I have detailled the whole in my book, together with the information that can be extracted by the scottish minutes that you have cited.
     
  15. Glen Cook

    Glen Cook G A Cook Site Benefactor

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    Visentin: “I have studied a lot the Legend of the Craft and my conclusions are that it tells a story and with no a moral intent or teaching,”
     

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