Wings up vs. wings down

Discussion in 'The Scottish Rite' started by David Hill, Jul 17, 2013.

  1. Warrior1256

    Warrior1256 Site Benefactor

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    Cool! Thanks for the reply brother. Always like receiving new info.
     
  2. Richard Wilson

    Richard Wilson Registered User

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    Wings up? War time, fight for the greater good.
    Wings down? Time of peace, country is currently not at war.
     
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  3. Warrior1256

    Warrior1256 Site Benefactor

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    Interesting!
     
  4. Brother JC

    Brother JC Vigilant Staff Member

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    This has to do with Scottish Rite how?
     
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  5. Winter

    Winter Premium Member

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    Do you have a source for this? It sounds like an urban myth like the one about the Presidential Seal changing during wartime. (It doesn't) Everything I have ever seen about the SR says it is merely a style issue whether the wings are up or down.

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  6. Brother JC

    Brother JC Vigilant Staff Member

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    Considering we’ve been at war for nearly two decades and the wings are still down, I have to agree.
     
  7. JamestheJust

    JamestheJust Registered User

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    In my view there are two sources for the eagle imagery in Freemasonry.

    The double headed eagle is used nationally only in the northern hemisphere. This tells something. Leonardo gave the game away with his Wolf and Eagle

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    The wolf (of heaven) is also known as the dog star - Sirius - the blazing star. While Leonardo does not show it, the Eagle at the North Pole looks both into the Heavens and into the Earth, thus can be portrayed as double headed. The Eagle is a veiling of a great entity.

    The other source of Eagle imagery comes from the alchemy practiced by many brethren that were both Royal Society members and Freemasons prior to 1717. To fly the eagle is to use sublimation in alchemical purification. Alchemical symbolism is rife in most 18th degree rituals.
     
  8. Winter

    Winter Premium Member

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    I don't think you've made the argument for the connection to Leonardo's work. But the source for the double headed eagle in in Scottish Rite is no mystery. It was supplied by Frederick the Great during the formative years of the Rite. And as a powerful symbol was used throughout history before its widespread use in Europe. From the Hittites and Hindoos, to the Turks and Arabians who passed it to the Crusaders, to the Holy Roman Empire, even the American Indians. But the question at hand, which I think has been pretty thoroughly answered, is why some show wings up and wings down.
     
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  9. The Traveling Man

    The Traveling Man Registered User

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    Northern Masonic Jurisdiction is wings down for 32° and 33° Honorary. Wings up is for 33° Active.
    Southern Jurisdiction is wings down for 32°. There are no wings on the 33° cap
    USC (PHA) Northern Jurisdiction in wings up.
    USC (PHA) Southern Jurisdiction is wings down.
     
  10. DaveBowman

    DaveBowman Registered User

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    The double-headed eagle appeared on some high-degree documents during the 18th century, before the Mother Supreme Council was formed at Charleston. It is an heraldic device or "charge," i.e. a design used in heraldry. In heraldry, it is described as a two-headed eagle (or an eagle with two heads) "displayed." The word "displayed" simply means that it has its wings spread open, and does not designate how those wings should appear (up, down or straight out).

    In heraldry, devices or charges are described in a "blazon," that is, in words. It is left up to the artist to translate that blazon into a visual image, using traditional images. No two artists will interpret a blazon the exact same way. So, some heraldic artists will interpret a "two-headed eagle displayed" with its wings up, while others will interpret it with wings down, and others will interpret it with wings straight out.

    When a Supreme Council selects a design for its insignia, letterheads, regalia, etc., it will simply choose the design it likes the best. Within one Supreme Council's jurisdiction, you may see a double-headed eagle with wings down on 32nd Degree caps, but then you may also see it with wings straight out on buildings, as you see on the House of the Temple in Washington, DC. At the same time, you may also see other designs with wings up on letterheads, business cards, or in publications.

    The point is that it doesn't mean anything other than the choice or preference of the person making the decision at the time it is employed.
     
  11. Elexir

    Elexir Registered User

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    If however the blason contain specific instructions like "eagle displayed with its wings up" or "square and compass displayed set at x°" it will not be up to the herald.
     
  12. JamestheJust

    JamestheJust Registered User

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    Oddly enough Leonardo's Eagle has its wings displayed.

    It may also be worth considering the alchemical process known as "flying the eagle"
     
  13. Winter

    Winter Premium Member

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    Why is that odd? Should it have been in another pose?

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