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Mrs. Juanita F. Max 



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" Every Christian is a stoue in this spiritual edifice, in which, when properly 
modelled and polished by the exercise of religion and the practice of morality, 
and fitted for translation to a celestial building, he is cemented with his per- 
fected brethren, by charity, into a beautiful temple, prepared on earth and put 
together ijj heaven." 

Dr. Oliver's Star in the East. 



Stereotyped by 

Printed and Bound by 


■t-y c 



In claiming the attention of the reader to the present 
volume, it may be proper for me to state, that it origina- 
ted in a wish to aid those charities which are at once the 
boast and ornament of our order, and more particularly to 
strengthen that which I conceive to be so full of promise 

CAYED Free-mason." 

In waiving, for myself, all pecuniary advantage, the far 
higher gratification will be mine of devoting the entire pro- 
ceeds of the copyright to Masonic charity. 

If the reader will bear in mind this design, some defects 
will more readily be excused. Moreover, it is incumbent 
on me to state, clearly and candidly, that some three or 
four of these sketches have appeared elsewhere. 

«' Canning in Retirement," " The Foreign Sorceress and 
the British Statesman," "A Sovereign, a Lady in Waiting, 
and a Secret," figured in the fugitive literature of the day ; 
while " The Measure meted out to Others, measured to 
us again," was honoured with a niche in "Blackwood." 

Would they were, one and all, more worthy of the 
cause they are designed to serve ! 


That some of the inferences which they suggest will 
be controverted is probable enough : especially such as 
have reference to the condition of the poor. Let me 
hope, however, that whatever deficiency my brochure may 
contain, there will be found in it no want of Christian 

For the rest — " None of these things move me !" 
Who is it that says : " The triumphs in evil which men 
call great, are but clouds passing over the serene and 
everlasting heavens. Men may, in craft or passion, decree 
violence and oppression ; but silently, irresistibly, they 
and their works are swept away. A voice of encourage- 
ment comes to us from the ruins of the past — from the 
humiliations of the proud, from the prostrate thrones of 
conquerors, from the baffled schemes of statesmen, from 
the reprobation which sooner or later visits unrighteous 
policy. Men, measures, and all earthly interests pass 
away ; but principles are eternal. Truth, justice, and 
goodness partake of the omnipotence and immutableness 
of God, whose essence they are. In these it becomes us to 
place a calm, joyful, and unfaltering trust in the darkest 
hour. " Shall not the judge of all the earth do right ?" 



October 1st, 1846. 



Sir WilKam Webb FoUett in Early Life 1 

The Soldier- Mason .... ..... 12 

The Anti-Masonic Vicar 16 

The Curse of Talent 24 

Canning in Retirement ■ . .... 31 

A Literary Soiree 40 

" The Measure meted out to Others, Measured to us again" . 45 

The Foreign Sorceress and the British Statesman . . .63 


"Nidus Passerum;" or, the " Sparro we' s" Nest at Ipswich , 68 


' Pao« 
A Mason in High Places : Bishop Griswold . . . .75 

A Sovereign : a Lady in Waiting : and a Secret . . ."80 

Liston ; or, the Melancholy of Mirth . . « . . 85 

The Juryman-Mason 92 

A Mason's Home ; Newstead Abbey and Col. Wildman . . 118 

The late Rev. Robert Lynam and the Prizes in the Church . 128 


A Grand Master's Ancestral Halls : Hastings and Donnington . 135 


Half a dozen Words about the Poor 141 

The True Pohcy of the Order . ._ . . . . 152 








" I fear not, Fate, thy pendent shears — 
There are who pray for length of years ; 

To them, not me, allot them : 
Life's cup is nectar at the brink, 
Midway a palatable drink, 

And wormwood at the bottom." 

Horace Smith. 

There is something pleasing, yet solemn, in the review 
which, as life's evening advances, we take of our early 
contemporaries. The roll-call recurs to us ; and, with 
each name, a thousand associations are instantly blended. 
Of those whom we recollect to have entered the race 
with us, how many have long since reached the goal ! 
How few — comparatively speaking — after a lapse of nine- 
and-twenty years remain ! Upon some, the drama of life 
has closed in poverty and exile. Upon others, bitter dis- 
appointment has fallen. The manhood of not a few has 
been steeped in sorrow. While more than one has sunk 
to sleep in the bosom of our common parent, with pros- 
pects finally and hopelessly overshadowed by ignominy 
and disgrace. 

Thus musing, it is dehghtful to turn to one whose 


whole progress was ^' oimard,'''' and whose career amply 
justified the affectionate expectations of those to whom 
his fame was dear. 

Sir William Webb Follett and myself were school- 
fellows. We had the advantage of being under the disci- 
pline of Doctor Lempriere — the author of the well-known 
Classical Dictionary — during the period he presided over 
the Exeter Free Grammar School. 

Of him it is not too much to affirm that he was at once 
the scholar and the gentleman — a most patient instructor 
and a most gifted companion. Poor fellow ! he laboured 
long and cheerfully; but the evening of his active life 
was painfully overcast. The " otium cum dignitate^'' was 
his only in prospect. Persecution assailed him from a 
quarter whence he had a right to expect only friendship. 
" Dis aliter visum / " He was ejected from the Head Mas- 
tership — the victim, as he averred, of some wretched 
intrigue ; and the object of accusations which could 
never be substantiated. 

But the period during which Sir William and my hum- 
ble self were under his control was that of his " high and 
palmy" days ; when the school was in the zenith of its 
fame, and he of his popularity; when the eldest sons of 
distinguished county families were domesticated beneath 
his roof — and no accents, save those of commendation, 
arose around him. 

One peculiarity he had — that of forming a tolerably 
correct estimate of a boy's after-success in life. I do not 
affirm that his opinion was always framed independent of 
prejudice, or that all his predictions were verified. I 
contend only that, mainly and generally, he was right. 
One instance I remember well. We had on the roll of 
our class a lad of extraordinary promise. His quickness 
and clearness of apprehension were remarkable. His 
command of language was great, and his facility in com- 
position enviable. The under-masters petted A as a 

prodigy ; and boldly predicted, on his leaving us, that he 
would rise, and rise rapidly, to distinction. 

From this opinion the Doctor invariably dissented. 
" Pshaw !" he was heard to say, on one occasion, " he 
will attain no distinction ; unless it be that of leaving 
the country at his Majesty's expense. He wants ballast 
— the ballast o/* principle." 


The Doctor was right. Poor A-—- — is now at Sydney. 

Equally judicious was his estimate of the late Attorney- 
General. " Webb Follett is not brilliant, but he is solid. 
He will not snatch, but he will earn distinction. I shall 
not live to see it ; but it will be so." 

Now, this conclusion was the more curious, because 
Follett was not one of those spirits w^io hit peculiarly 
the Doctor's taste. Follett, as a boy, w^as rather slow ; 
there is no use in denying it. There was at school 
nothing dashing or brilliant about him. His articulation 
in boyhood was thick, and his demeanour somewhat 
sluggish. Now sliarpness, quickness, and readiness, the 
Doctor delighted in. Again : Follett was not fond of 
classics ; the Doctor revelled in them. And yet he ap- 
preciated his pupil, and did him justice. In proof of this, 
I well recollect that when one of the under-masters — 
Osborne was the reverend gentleman's name — said to the 
Doctor, after a hasty perusal, " J-Vebb Follett'' s verses, Sir, 
want imagination;''' the rejoinder instantly followed — 
" But, Sir, they possess — what many verses do not — 

There was one peculiarity about the late Attorney- 
General in boyhood, which, I am inclined to think, ac- 
companied him in after-life. He possessed the entire 
confidence of our little community. The sentiment he 
inspired, generally, was respect. "Well! that's Webb 
Follett's opinion" — was a dictum which settled many a 
boyish quarrel, and stilled many an angry difference. 
Perhaps this might mainly be owing to his manner : for 
even in boyhood he was calm, and grave, and self-pos- 
sessed. There was a composedness about him which no 
petty irritations coold ruffle. Webb Follett in a passion 
would have been a rare spectacle on the play-ground. 

I remember accompanying him and two others to the 
Nisi Prius Court, at Exeter, during the assizes. We little 
thought at that moment what a distinguished role our 
calm and thoughtful companion was himself destined to 
play in a court of judicature. Talent there was in abun- 
dance on the Western Circuit at that juncture ; Gilford 
and Lens, and Pell and Abbot, all in the very zenith of 
their powers, and in the full swing of successful exertion, 
and all since passed away from the scene ! 

We, the juniors, were desirous to bribe our way into 


the Crown Court ; but Follett was resolved to enter none 
but the nisi prius. 

" I want," was his remark, " to hear GifFord cross- 
examine a witness ;" and, much against our will, we 
accompanied him. We staid till the court broke up. 
When the sheriff's carriage approached to convey the 
judge to his lodgings, with the pomp and parade usually- 
observed on such occasions, we loitered and gazed at the 
spectacle with lighter hearts, perhaps, than those of the 
principal performers. 

"Who knows but that I may come here as judge some 
day myself?'' said our companion, as we reluctantly 
turned our steps homeward. 

"Judge Follett!" we exclaimed and roared with 

"Well, Follett, you would be a grave judge at any 
rate," said Edward Gater, our spokesman. 

" Grave or not," was the rejoinder, " I hope I should 
be able to see when a counsel was bamming me ; and not 
listen on, as that old woman did this morning, while Pell 
was regularly cramming her !" 

The " old woman" was no less a personage than the 
late Sir Alan Chambre. 

And yet, daring and strange as the remark may seem — 
those who remember him in youth will bear out its truth 
— law was not his choice. His early predilections leant 
towards a military life. I remember going down to stay 
with him a couple of days at his father's at Topsham. A 
general officer had died in or near Exeter : he had com- 
manded the district, and a military funeral, on an exten- 
sive scale, and of an imposing description, awaited him. 
Follett and I witnessed it. During the visit he reverted 
to this spectacle more than once, and told me how much 
and ardently he had wished to be a soldier. He dwelt 
on the many attractions which the profession of arms 
possessed for him ; the perpetual change of scene which 
it involved ; the probability of visiting foreign climes ; 
the careless, light-hearted, joyous life led by the 
military man ; the independent position which the 
soldier maintained in society ; — " but," so ran his 
summary, " this is an idle train of thought : my father's 
past experience leads him to oppose me, decidedly, on 
the point; and," added he, with his calm, sweet 


thoughtful smile, "ours is a struggling family; we 
want money." 

In after life he was accused of being sordid ; but might 
not the unwavering and untiring earnestness with which 
he followed up his determination to accumulate wealth 
have had its origin in those prudential considerations, 
pressed on him by Captain Follett in the outset of his 
career, and which undoubtedly swayed him in his choice 
of a profession ? Nor, wtiile glancing at the past, does it 
escape me that, politically, the bias of the youth and of 
the man was identical. Follett, even in his early days, 
was an unflinching Tory. A boyish incident fixes this 
firmly in my memor}?-. Near the Grammar School lived 
a saddler of the name of Cooke; this eccentric had a 
strong political mania, and used, during the stirring period 
of the war, to issue, for the benefit of the masses, large 
written placards detailing, in quaint phraseology and 
most original spelling, the leading events of the day. 
These monster placards were nailed to his shutters, read 
by many hundreds in the course of the current twenty- 
four hours, and were called " Cooke's Bulenteensy The 
saddler was a disciple of Lord Eldon's school ; thought 
Billy Pitt " the greatest man that ever drew the breath 
of life," and Buonaparte the incarnation upon earth of 
the evil one ; hated the French with a perfect hatred, and 
regarded Cobbett as " a traitorous villian, whom the axe 
would make a head shorter some summer's day ;" spoke 
of George the Third as a martyr — the train of reasoning 
by which he arrived at this conclusion I could never very 
clearly follow — and Peter Pindar " a wretch unfit to live !" 
His idol was Lord RoUe : he called him " the glory of 
Devon," " his country's pride," one of the "bulwarks of 
the state," "Lord Liverpool's prized counsellor," and 
" the ornament of the peerage." Alas ! poor peerage ! 

But despite of all their absurdity, prejudice, and 
strange orthography, John Cooke's " Bullenteens" had 
a host of " constant readers." Among them, at any and 
every opportunity he could seize, the future Atto*-ney- 
General. His penchant did not escape comment • the 
entire sixth form assailed him. 

" What can induce you, Follett, to stand and read 
such trash ?" cried one senior. " Saddler Cooke is little 
better than a maniac," shouted another. 


*' And should be taught to spell," added a third. 

" Which Follett, for the love he bears him, is about to 
attempt," was the sly suggestion of a fourth. 

Follett fiuished the " bullenteen" without heeding the 
small shot that was firing around him. He decyphered 
the hieroglyphics and mastered the orthography with his 
wonted deliberation, and then calmly rejoined — 

" No one denies the coarseness of Cooke's remarks, or 
the general absurdity of his arguments, when the reason- 
ing fit is on him ; but I like the man — like him hugely. 
I like his honesty, his sincerity, his obstinate devotion 
to his party ; and, more than this, I like him because, 
himself sprung from the rabble, he is no democrat, but, 
on the contrary, never fails to warn his fellow-men how 
they would fare were a mob government in rule over 
them. Laugh on as you will, I'm to the death John 
Cooke's ally, admirer, and constant reader." 

Meanwhile, if the saddler had his adherents, he had 
also his opponents; and, as he never could be brought to 
use parliamentary language, or study refinement in the 
epithets which he applied to men and parties, there was 
occasionally a row around his "buUenteens." At one 
of these Follett was present. The obnoxious paper was 
about to be pulled down and torn to atoms by an in- 
censed bystander, when Follett dashed in, rescued the 
state paper, and restored it to its amazed and angry 

Tidings of this escapade reached head-quarters. 

"By what fortune were you present at this paltry 
brawl," said the Doctor, " and what motive had you for 
interfering ? I address myself to Follett." 

"If you please, Sir, Cooke belongs to our party," was 
the response. 

'^ Oh !" said the Doctor, drily, "I was not aware that 
my sixth form troubled themselves about parties : and 
pray, Mr. Follett, which may you favour?" 

" Church and State, Sir." 

" I wish most devoutly," said the Doctor, turning 
away, " that the Exe had the saddler and his bulletins 
and his ink-horn in its waters ; I shall now be treated to 
a political mania in the school, and have this to combat 
in addition to ignorance and idleness. Pleasant ! My 
obligations to Mr. Cooke are great." 


Those who saw Sir William only in public, and noticed 
the gravity, quiescence, and dignity of his demeanour, 
would credit with reluctance that quiet humour formed 
any part of his character. It did. One brief trait must 
suffice. At the period I am referring to, there lived in 
Colleton Crescent a lady of the name of Hewitt. She 
was a person advanced in life; a widow, possessed of 
West India property to some amount ; of extremely 
cheerful habits ; fond of society ; and very partial to 
young people. To amuse a nephew and niece who were 
staying with her, she issued cards for a masquerade. 
This was a novel species of entertainment in Exeter ; 
created a good deal of expectation among the young, and 
marvellous comment among the old. But comment was 
not all which the projected evening's amusement aroused. 
The gay old lady was doomed to meet with opposition. 
A few days before the masquerade was "to come off," a 
clergyman — I shall term him the Reverend Goliah 
Ghostly— called on Mrs. Hewitt to demand her reasons 
for giving so objectionable an entertainment. The lady 
faltered a little in her reply; and at length observed, 
that she " imagined the Exeter people would like it — 
the young folks more particularly." Upon which, Mr. 
Ghostly upbraided her for her godless tastes ; told her 
in plain terms how reprehensible were her doings ; and 
finished, by inquiring, " what would become of her if she 
should die with a masquerade going on in her house ?" — 
The elderly lady meekly answered, that she " had cer- 
tainly not provided against such a contingency : and was 
aware that death could be at no great distance from her 
whether she was at home or abroad." Mr. Ghostly then 
assured her that she was corrupting the morals of the 
young, setting a perilous example in a cathedra) city ; 
that all sober people looked upon the projected masque- 
rade as an abomination ; that thenceforth she would be a 
marked person ; and that the public, as they passed Colle- 
ton Crescent, would point to her dwelling, and say, " that 
is the infamous house where the masquerade was given !" 

This last figure of speech overpowered Mrs. Hewitt. 
The "finger of scorn" was too m.uch for her. She shed 
tears : confessed the error of her ways, and vowed that 
she would recall her cards, and that the masquerade 
should be forthwith relinquished. 


Had Mr. Ghostly paused here and vanished, all would 
have been well. His triumph so far was complete. But 
not satisfied with the concession he had won, he renew- 
ed the attack, by inquiring when this satanic imagination 
first took possession of her mind ; asked her if she had 
ever attended a revel of the kind ; and added his fears as 
to the frightfully lethargic state of her conscience, which 
could permit her to contemplate an entertainment of 
such an equivocal description. Mrs. Hewitt upon this 
dried her tears ; reflected in silence for a few moments ; 
and then amended her position. 

She observed, she thought at sixty she was able to 
distinguish between right and wrong ; that she held 
there was a marked difference between a public and a 
private masquerade ; that she fancied she was at liberty 
to spend her income as she pleased ; that Mr. Goliah 
Ghostly was not her parochial minister, or even a per- 
sonal acquaintance ; that she at no time attended his 
church, or formed part of his congregation ; that she 
denied his right to call her to account, or to decide upon 
her future destiny ; and further, she was resolved that — 
the masquerade should go forward! On that she was firm, 
come what would of it ! 

Mr. Ghostly professed himself unutterably shocked, 
and commenced de novo his threats and warnings. These 
the hospitable old lady waived by asking him to take 
luncheon ; and on his declining, rose and said, " their 
most unforeseen and agreeable interview was ended." She 
"had promised to take an invalid friend a drive, and 
expected the carriage round every moment." 

This conference — its object — its results — the dialogue 
which passed between the parties, formed a glorious 
theme for gossip for many days in Exeter. The sixth 
form, who had sisters, brothers, cousins bidden to the 
frolic, and who were all agog themselves on the subject, 
discussed Mr. Ghostly's visit most assiduously; the 
characters which it was surmised their various relatives 
intended to assume were enumerated and criticised. 

" The masquerade will be a dead failure," remarked 
Follett, slyly, who had been a quiet but most observant 
listener — " a decided and acknowledged failure, if one 
character be not present at it." 

" Name ! name !" exclaimed a dozen eager voices. 


" Mr. Goliah Ghostly," said Follett, with a low music- 
al laugh. 

"But how? by what means? The thing is impos- 
sible !" 

" Nothing easier ! And what lots of fun his presence 
would cause in the motley assembly." 

" Whether the same idea struck another party, or 
whether Follett's suggestion was deemed too good to be 
lost, was repeated by some one of his youthful auditory, 
and immediately adopted by some relative or friend, who 
was at a loss for a character, and deemed it a happy one, 
cannot now be ascertained. Certain it is, that about 
midnight, a mask, professionly attired, and calling him- 
self the Reverend Goliah Ghostly, presented himself at 
Mrs. Hewitt's mansion with proper credentials ; obtain- 
ed admission, and duly and warmly anathematized the 
amused and uproarious party. 

Who he was never transpired ; though many and 
shrewd guesses were hazarded respecting him. His voice 
was as musical as his denunciations were bitter. This 
much is indisputable, that for weeks and months after- 
wards, the real Mr. Ghostly was ever and anon asked 
what he thought of masquerades in general, and of Mrs. 
Hewitt's in particular. 

Nor was this the extent of the annoyance endured by 
him. There were some bull-headed people who believed, 
or affected to believe, that, unable to resist the prevailing 
mania, Mr. Ghostly's scruples had given way, and that, 
after all, he was present at Mrs. Hewitt's misdoings: — 
they averred, as a fact, that, " it was the real and no fictiti- 
ous Mr. Ghostly," who solemnly paraded the apartments, 
and in good set terms reproved the merry-making assem- 
blage. This was filling the cup of bitterness to the 

The future Attorney-General had been for many months 
called to the bar when we again met. This was early in 
1826. He then spoke calmly, but feelingly, of the pro- 
fessional jealousy which existed among those to whom 
he was now affiliated. 

"Players' rivalry," said he, " is a joke to it. You can 
have no conception of its extent, or strength, unless you 
yourself belonged to the profession." 

He then reverted to past scenes and mutual friends 


and in the course of conversation, I inferred, from a pass- 
ing remark, that he had become a Mason. I asked if my 
conclusion was correct, 

"It is," was his reply, " I was initiated at Cambridge." 

Light had not then beamed upon myself; and I ex- 
pressed in scoffing terms my astonishment. 

"In your early struggles at the bar," remarked he with 
quiet earnestness, "you require something to reconcile 
you to your kind. You see so much of bitterness, and 
rivalry, and jealousy, and hatred, that you are thankful to 
call into active agency a system which creates in all its 
varieties kindly sympathy, cordial and wide-spread bene- 
volence, and brotherly love." 

" But surely," said I, " you don't go the length of 
asserting that Masonry does all this?" 

"And more! The true Mason thinks no evil of his 
brother, and cherishes no designs against him. The sys- 
tem itself annihilates parties. And, as to censoriousness 
and calumny, most salutary and stringent is the curb 
which masonic principle, duly carried out, applies to an 
unbridled tongue." 

'^Well! well! you cannot connect it with religion: 
you cannot, say or do as you will, affirm of it that Ma- 
sonry is a religious system." 

"By-and-by, you will know better," was his reply. 
" Now I will only say this, that the Bible is never closed 
in a Masons' lodge ; that Masons habitually use prayer in 
their lodges ; and in point of fact, never assemble for 
any purpose without performing acts of religion : I gave 
you credit," continued he with a smile, "for being more 
thoroughly emancipated from nursery trammels and 
slavish prejudice." 

"You claim too much for your system," was my 

" Not at all ! But hear me. Many clergymen were and 
are Masons. The well-known Dr. Dodd belonged to us." 

"I presume," said I, jestingly, " you attach but slight 
weight to his name? The selection is unfortunate." 

" It occurred to me," said he, "from my having recent- 
ly read some very curious letters connected with his 
case. The Masons, both individually and as a body, 
made the most extraordinary efforts to save him. They 
were unwearied : but — I must break off"; when I can call 


you Brother you shall see these letters. Meanwhile, is 
it not worth while to belong to a fraternity, whose prin- 
ciples, if universal, would put down at once and for ever 
the selfish and rancorous feelings which now divide and 
distract society ?" 




" As a military man I can say, and I speak from experience, that I have 
known many soldiers who were Masons : I never knew a good Mason 
who was a bad soldier." — Lord Combermere. 

During an early period of my life, it was my fortune 
to hold a curacy in Worcester. 

The parish in which I had to labour, though limited in 
point of size, was populous ; and in it were to be found 
densely packed together, in two narrow, close, unhealthy 
streets, some twelve or fourteen hundred of the working 
classes. It was a post at once interesting and distressing ; 
interesting from the varied aspect it presented of human 
sorrow, struggle, and suiFering; and distressing from the 
poverty which prevailed in it, and the utter inability of 
an individual clergyman to cope with its many wants and 

In my rounds I lighted upon a party, whose name — I 
know no reason why I should conceal it — was Parker. 
He had been a soldi-^r, a corporal, and had served with 
some degree of distinction in India and the Peninsular 
war. Subsequently he was stationed at Gibraltar ; and 
there, from some peculiar circumstance which at the 
moment I forget, came under the personal notice of 
General Don. lie had a certificate as to conduct and 
character from the General, written by himself through- 
out. If I mistake not, he had been orderly for months 
together to the old chief. At all events, the testimony 
borne by him to Parker's services and character was of 
no common-place description. There was something in 
the bearing and conversation of this man which arrested 


attention. He was in bad health, suiFered at intervals 
acutely from the effects of a gun-shot wound, and was 
frequently disabled for weeks together from all exertion. 
In his domestic relations, too, he had much to try him : 
his means were narrow, not always prudently administer- 
ed, and he had some little mouths around him clamour- 
ous for bread. And yet no murmur escaped him ; he suf- 
fered on in silence. But personal suffering did not render 
him selfish. To eke out his scanty pension, he resolved 
on returning to Worcester (still famous for its gloves), 
and there resuming the calling of his boyish days — leather 
staining. Now this department of labour, though it 
may be carried on with tolerable impunity by the strong 
and the healthy, is, to the feeble and the failing, most 
pernicious. Dabbling with cold water, hour after hour, 
and walking about in garments dank and heavy with 
moisture, tell, eventually, even upon a vigorous constitu- 
tion. Imagine, then, its effect upon a frame enfeebled by 
a tropical climate, and v/orn down by continuous suffer- 

" It mauls me. Sir, somev/hat !" was his cheerful 
reply to my close inquiries on this point one bitter 
November morning. His surgeon had told him — and 
this I knew — that his only chance, not of checking his 
complaint, for that was impossible, but of staying its 
progress was to keep himself warm and dry, and to 
avoid, systematically, cold and damp. 

Of this I reminded him. 

" He may talk," was his answer, " but these" — look- 
ing at his children — " must not starve !" 

Once only his equanimity failed him. I surprised him 
one evening in excruciating pain, without fuel or food in 
his dwelling, or money in his pocket. 

He then said to me — the admission was wrung from 
him by bodily and mental agony — that " considering the 
cripple he was, and why ; where he had served, and 
how ; he thought that his country should have done 
something more for him. My lot," continued he, " has 
been a hard one. I was compelled by bad health to 
quit Gibraltar. The doctors ordered me home : they 
said, if I remained on the Rock six weeks longer death 
**as certain ; I obeyed. Three months afterwards Gene- 
ral Don died, and, to the man who succeeded me in my 


post under him, left his wardrobe, his arms, his personal 
valuables, what, in fact, proved a competence for life. 
This was trying ; but certain tenets tell me that I ought 
to be satisfied with whatever portion of work or labour 
is allotted me. Fidelity to my mighty Maker is one 
point; tranquillity, stillness, and silence, while I perform 
my task, and that cheerfully, are others." 

"You are a Mason ?" said I. 

He smiled. 

" You may guess wider of the mark than even that." 

"Why not apply to you Brethren in Worcester? you 
are aware that here there is a lodge?" 

He shook his head. 

" A soldier cannot beg : it is hateful to him : he fears 
a repulse from a board of gentlemen at home far more 
than an enemy's bayonets abroad." 

" Then I nmst act for you. Your case is pressing ; 
and, giving full credit to your narrative from past ex- 
perience of your character, I shall now take my own 
course. Of intentional mis-statement I believe you to 
be incapable." 

" I have my credentials with me," said he calmly ; "I 
was made in a military lodge in Ireland. My certificate, 
duly signed, is in my oaken chest : all will bear ' the 
LIGHT,' and on all is stamped ' fidelity.' " 

I took the initiative and succeeded. The order was 
worthily represented in Worcester then and now. The 
appeal was heard and heeded. 

Poor Parker has long since escaped from earthly trials 
and bodily ailments, and no feelings can be wounded by 
referring to his history. But it may be instanced as in- 
volving a lesson of some moment. Here was a man who 
unquestionably had spent the prime of his life in his 
country's service. He had carried her standard and had 
fought her battles. His blood had flowed freely in her 
cause. His adherence to her interests had cost him dear. 
Wounds which neither skill nor time could heal, disabled 
him from exertion, and rendered life a burden. To acute 
bodily suffering positive privation was added. 

Who relieved him ? 

His country ? No. She left him to perish on a nig- 
gardly pension. Who succoured him? The great duke, 
whose debt to the private soldier is so apparent and 


overwhelming? No. His grace had become a states- 
man, and in that capacity wrote caustic letters (from 
any other pen they would have been pronounced coarse) to 
those who ventured to appeal to him. 

Who aided the wounded and sinking soldier in his 
extremity ? 

The Brotherhood — a secret band, if you will, but 
active — which requires no other recommendation save 
desert, and no other stimulus than sorrow. 

And yet, how little is it understood, and how strange- 
ly misrepresented ! 

In " The Crescent and the Cross," by Mr. Warburton, 
there is a glowing passage, which winds up with the 
remark — " Freemasonry, degenerated in our day into a 
mere convivial bond." 

I laid down the volume with a smile and a sigh ; a 
sigh that a writer of such highly cultivated intellect 
and generous impulses should have so sadly misunder- 
stood us. A smile — for taking up an able periodical, 
" The Morning Herald," my eye rested on the passage, — 
"This day 3,000/., contributed in India principally among 
the Freemasons, was lodged in the Bank of Ireland to 
the credit of the Mansion House Committee, for the 
relief of the destitute poor in Ireland." 

Weighty results these from a society which is " no 
thing tnore than a mere convivial bond." 



" Turn your atteutioa to that maguificeut structure, tlie Temple of 
Jerusalem. Observe, uo clay substance, no brick, was used ; lest any 
inferior material should give rise to base ideas. Every part and particle 
of that grand dwelling of IIim, whose existence is secret, was perfect of 
its kind. Its commonest fragments were matter of attentive survey. 
Even the stones were quarried in the country of Judaea. And every 
measure was taken to steep the mind in that serenity, calmness, and 
intensity of devotion which are essential to the true worship of the 
Almighty. The stones, too, were levelled and squared before they were 
brought to the place, and the waste was left behind, that all might be 
fully prepared and cleanly wrought. So, in like manner, should all Free- 
masons level and square their hearts, purging them of every impurity, in 
order to arrive at that glorious state of mental and spiritual perfection, 
of which the Temple and its composition was beautifully symbolical." — 
Lebanon, by Joel Nash. 

" I HAVE sent for you, although I know my summons 
must be inconvenient, because I choose you to be present 
at an interview which has been forced on me by a depu- 
tation from the Freemasons : they aim at persuading me 
to allow them to assemble in my church. A likely mat- 
ter, indeed ! a very likely matter !" 

So spake, with flushed cheek and quivering lip, my 
well-intentioned but nervous incumbent, one memorable 
Saturday in the month of August. 

"Very well, Sir," was my reply; "you may depend 
on my heeding and recollecting the sentiments of each 

" Would to heaven !" — this was an aside — " that these 
Mason people had chosen some other day than Saturday 
for their conference ! Neither sermon written ! The 
Lending Library accounts all in confusion ; Mrs. Watkin- 
son's sick baby to baptize ; and two funerals in the after- 
noon to a certainty '" 


"They must be cut short — yes! very, very short!" 
ejaculated the vicar decisively and emphatically. 

" What ! the sermons ?" cried I, reverting at once to 
the topic uppermost in my own mind; "oh ! very well. 
Your views, Sir, are mine. They shall be shortened to a 

" You are dreaming," remarked my superior pettishly. 
" I allude to the speeches, the oratorical displays, the 
verbiage of these mystics." 

" Ah ! precisely so," was my dutiful reply. " You, 
Sir, and no other, hold the check string : the length of 


the interview must depend on your pleasure. Ma 
this was another aside — " I wish they were all walled 
up in the Pyramids. Six : and no tidings ! It will be 
midnight before I shall have completed my preparations 
for to-morrow." 

" I am not narrow-minded," resumed Mr. Gresham, 
fidgeting fretfully in his chair, " far from it ; my views 
are liberal and enlarged ; I never by any chance indulge 
in a harsh surmise touching any one of my fellow- 
creatures. But these Mason people alarm me. They 
have a secret ; there is some extraordinary bond, stringent 
and well understood, by which they support each other. 
I look upon them as little better than conspirators :" — 
then, after a brief pause- — '■'■in fact, they are conspira- 
tors !" 

"You really think so?" said I, for the first time feel- 
ing an interest in the subject. 

"I do ; seriously and solemnly," said the vicar, with 
an air of the most earnest and portentous gravity. 

" Rat-tat-tat ! Rap, rap !" 

" The Deputation, Sir," said the butler, bowing five 
middle-aged gentlemen into the study. 

For a set of " conspirators" they were the oddest- 
looking people imaginable. There they stood, a knot of 
portly, Irank-featured, cheerful men, upon whom the 
cares of life apparently sat lightly, who greeted their 
pastor with a smile, and seemed in high good humour 
with themselves and all around them. Nor, while I 
curiously scanned their look and bearing, could I, for the 
life of ae, imagine a reason why men so happily circum 
stanced should take it into their head to turn 'plotters. The 
foremost of the group I knew to be a man of wealth. He 


had " a stake," and no small one, in the permanent pros- 
perity of his country. His next neighbour was a wine- 
merchant, with a large and well-established connection, 
and blest with a rising and most promising family — what 
had he to "conspire" about? The party a little in the 
background was a Dissenter of irreproachable character, 
and tenets strict even to sternness. Moreover, on no 
subject did he dilate, publicly as well as privately, with 
greater earnestness and unction than on the incalculable 
evils arising from war, and the duty of every Christian 
state, at any sacrifice, to avoid it. What ! Ae " a con- 
spirator !" Fronting the vicar was the banker of our 
little community. And to him I fancied nothing would 
be less agreeable than " a run" upon his small but 
flourishing firm in Quay-street. And yet " runs" severe 
— repeated — exhausting " runs," would inevitably result 
from any widely-spread and successful conspiracy. The 
banker's supporter was a little mirthful-eyed man — a 
bachelor — who held a light and eligible appointment 
under government, and looked as if he had never known 
a care in all his life. He perplexed me more than all the 
rest. He, of all created beings, a conspirator ! Mar- 
vellous ! 

The spokesman of the party began his story. He said 
in substance that a new Lodge being about to be opened 
within a mile and half of Fairstream, it was the wish of 
the Brethren (the more firmly to engraft on the noble 
tree this new Masonic scion) to go in procession to church, 
and there listen to a sermon from a clerical brother. In 
this arrangement he, in the name of the Lodge, repre- 
sented by the parties then in his presence, most respect- 
mlly requested the vicar's concurrence. 

That reverend personage, with a most distant and for- 
bidding air, replied, that he could sanction no such pro- 

Perplexed by this response, which was equally un- 
palatable and unexpected, the Deputation, with deference, 
demanded my incumbent's I'easons for refusal. 

♦' They are many and various," replied he ; " but resolve 
themselves mainly into these four. First: There is 
nothing church about you ! " 

The Deputation stared. 

" I repeat, that of Free-masons as a body the Church. 


knows nothing. You admit into your fellowship men of 
all creeds. Your principles and intentions may be pure 
and praiseworthy ; and such I trust they are. But the 
Church is not privy to them. The Church is in ignorance 
respecting them. The Church does not recognize them. 
And, therefore, as a ministering servant of the Church, I 
must decline affording you any countenance or support." 

The banker here submitted to the vicar, that in works 
of charity — in supporting an infirmary, a dispensary, a 
clothing club, a stranger's friend society — identity of 
creed was not essential. Men of different shades of 
religious belief could harmoniously and advantageously 
combine in carrying out a benevolent project. And one 
of the leading principles of Free-masonry was active, and 
untiring, and widely-spread benevolence. Could success 
crown any charitable project, any scheme of philan- 
thropy, any plan for succouring the suffering and the 
necessitous (the operation of xvhicli was to be extended, and 
not partial), if no assistance was accepted save from those 
who held one and the same rehgious creed ? Charity,''^ he 
contended, " knew no creed. No shackles, forged by human 
opinions, could or ought to trammel her. He was no 
friend to his species who would seek to impose them." 

The vicar shook his head repeatedly, in token of vehe- 
ment dissent from these observations, and proceeded : — 

" Next I object to you because you are friendly to 
processions; and, I am given to understand, purpose 
advancing to church in long and elaborate array. All 
processions, all emblems, all symbols, I abominate. Such 
accessories are, in the sanctuary, absolutely indecent ; I 
will not call them unholy : I term them downright pro- 
fane. What has a thinking being — particularly when 
proceeding, for the purposes of worship, to the temple 
of his Creator — what has he to do with processions? 
They are, one and all, abominations." 

The little placeman here briskly stepped forv/ard and 
said, that " in that Book, with which he was sure the 
vicar was better acquainted than any one of them, pro- 
cessions were repeatedly mentioned, and never con- 
demned. They occur in all parts of the sacred volume, 
and in a very early portion of it. A procession of no 
ordinary description followed Jacob's remains when, with 
filial love, Joseph brought them out of Egypt into 


Canaan. A procession, long and elaborately arranged, 
attended the removal of the ark from its temporary 
sojourn in the house of Obed-Edom. A procession, glo- 
rious and imposing, preceded the dedication of Solomon's 
temple. A procession — — " 

"Pray," said the vicar sharply, "do you mean to con- 
tend that any one of these processions was at all the 
counterpart of a masonic procession?" 

" I do not ; I disclaim all such irreverent intention," 
returned the other, gravely: " my object was simply to 
shew that, by the very highest authority which man 
can produce, processions are not forbidden. Usage sanc- 
tions their adoption among ourselves. They form a part 
of our most august ceremonies. When the peers present 
an address to the sovereign on his escape from the hands 
of an assassin, on the birth of an heir to the throne, on 
the marriage of one of the royal family, they repair to 
the ro3'^al presence in procession. At the coronation of 
the sovereign one of the most important features in the 
pageant is a gorgeous and lengthened procession. That 
procession, let me remind you. Sir, wends its way to the 
house of God, and for the purposes of worship. It 
enters the abbey. There divine service is performed ; in 
the course of which the sovereign receives the crown and 
takes an oath to the people. These points are pressed 
on you, as pertinent to the subject. Surely, after con- 
sidering them, you will hold us blameless if, as Masons, 
we wish to ' Go up to the house of God in company ' — 
in other words, 'in procession?' " 

"Plausible, but hollow!" was the vicar's comment: 
then, after a pause, " you have failed to convince me. I 
object to you, strongly, on the score of your processions, 
and I object to you still more decidedly on the score of 

your secret. You are a secret society; are held 

together by a stringent oath ; now I hold that, wherever 
there is mystery, there is iniquity !" 

" A harsh conclusion, indeed !" exclaimed Mr. Walford, 
the wine-merchant, who now took part in the discussion; 
" you cannot be serious in maintaining it ? When you 
assert secrecy to be criminal, you have forgotten its uni- 
versal agency. It has escaped j\ u how largely it per- 
vades both public and private life. In every department 
its operation is traceable. The naval commander sails 


from his country's shores under sealed orders. He has 
private papers which contain his instructions. These he 
is to open in a certain latitude and longitude. Mean- 
while their import is ' secret' to him, and to those who 
serve under him. But he accepts his trust unhesitatingly. 
The ' secrecy ' in which his orders are veiled does not 
indispose him towards their fulfilment, make him suspi- 
cious of their origin, doubtful of their necessity, or render 
their faithful performance one whit less obligatory upon 
his part. His duty is to obey. — -Take another instance 
— The cabinet council which deliberates on the interests 
of this great country, and advises the sovereign in mat- 
ters of policy, is sworn to secrecy. No member of it is 
allowed, without distinct permission from the reigning 
prince, to divulge one syllabe of what passes at its sit- 
tings. It is a SECRET conclave. But no one questions, 
on that account, the legality or propriety of its decisions. 
In private life secrecy obtains. In a commercial partner- 
ship there are secrets — the secrets of the firm. To them 
each co-partner is privy ; but is solemnly bound not to 
disclose them. In a family there are secrets. In most 
households there are facts which the heads of that house- 
hold do not divulge to their servants, children, and de- 
pendants. Prudence enjoins secrecy. So that, in public 
and in private life, in affairs of state, and in afiairs of com- 
merce, secrecy, more or less, prevails ; why, then, should 
it be objected to the Free-mason, that in his order there 
is a secret which is essential to the existence of the fra- 
ternity, and which he his bound to hold sacred ?" 

"Ha! ha! ha! An adroit evasion of a very awkward 
accusation!" cried the vicar with an enjoyable chuckle: 
"who is the general of your Order? There must be 
Jesuits amongst ye ! No argument from Stonyhurst 
could be more jesuitically pointed!" And again the 
vicar laughed heartily. 

The Deputation did not join him. They looked on in 
silence. Perhaps they thought the refusal of the church 
a sufficient annoyance, without the addition of the vicar's 
baniering. His pleasantry was not infectious. Perchance 
they held with the delinquent Negro, in one of our West 
IiirGa colonies, who was first severely reprimanded, and 
tlien soundly thrashed, by his owner — " Massa, massa ; 
no preachee too andfloggee too!" 


At length one of them, with great gravity, inquired, 
" Whether Mr. Gresham had any further objection to 

"Oh dear, yes! I am hostile to you, because you 


The banker now fired his broadside. 

" We do. We are as a city at unity in itself. We 
form a band of united Brethren, bound by one solemn 
obligation, stringent upon all, from the highest to the 
lowest; and the object of our combination? boundless 
charity and untiring benevolence. We must be chaxita- 
ble and kindly-aifectioned to all ; but more especially to 
our Brethren. With them we are ever to sympathize 
readily, and their necessities to succour cheerfully. Re- 
spect are we to have none, either as to colour, creed, or 
country. And yet is our charity to be neither indiscri- 
minate, wasteful, nor heedless. We are to prefer the 
worthy Brother, and to reject the worthless. And our 
warrant for so doing is his command who has said: 
' Thou shalt open thine hand wide to thy brother, and 
to thy poor, and to thy needy in thy land.' " 

" The latter remark none can gainsay," said the vicar 
coldly; ■' and thus, I believe, our interview terminates." 

The Deputation retired, desperately chagrined. 

The church was closed against them. The new lodge 
was opened ; but there was no public procession, and 
no sermon. To me, lightly and carelessly as I then 
thought of the fraternity, there seemed much that was 
inexplicable in the rebuff which it sustained. Here was 
Mr. Grresham, a conscientious and well-intentioned man, 
who lamented, Sunday after Sunday, the prevalence of 
sorrow, care, and suffering around him ; who spoke, with 
tears in his eyes, of the apathy of the rich and the endur- 
ance of the poor ; who deplored the selfishness of the 
age ; who averred, bitterly and repeatedly, that " all 
sought their own " — here was he, withstanding to his 
utmost a Brotherhood who declared — and none contra- 
dicted them — that their leading object was to relieve 
distress and sorrow. Of him they seek an audience. 
When gained, they use it to request the use of his pulpit, 
with the view of making their principles better known ; 
of effacing some erroneous impressions afloat respecting 
them ; in other words, of strengthening their cause. 


That cause they maintain to be identical with disin- 
terested henevolence and brotherly love. 

Mr. Gresham declares " off-" refuses them his church ; 
and will have nothing to do with them! " They may 
solve the riddle who can," said I, as, thoroughly baffled, 
I sought my pillow. " Each and all are incomprehen- 
sible. I don't know which party is the most confound- 
ing ; the Masons with their well-guarded secret, or Mr. 
Gresham with his insurmountable prejudices!" 



" If you would enjoy happy anticipations when advanced in years, and 
when your bosom is becoming dead to the fascinations of life, you must 
circumscribe your thoughts and actions by the instruction of this signifi- 
cant emblem. You must keep within the compass, and act upon the 
square, with all mankind ; for your Masonry is but a dead letter if you 
do not habitually perform its reiterated injunctions." — Oliver's Signs 
and Symbols. 

We "Britishers," as Brother Jonathan calls us, have 
some rather comical notions. We hug ourselves in our 
prejudices, pique ourselves upon our morality, and swell 
with conscious superiority if religious observances or 
social civilization be the topic adverted to. Touching 
the Jews — that mighty, mysterious, and enduring people 
— how often is the exclamation heard— "That always 
mercenary and to the last idolatrous nation !" A com- 
ment which comes with but indifferent grace from an 
English lip, seeing that we escape with marvellous diffi- 
culty from the charge of idolatry ourselves. Earnest 
worshippers are we of Mammon and Intellect. To both 
deities we pay homage blindly, recklessly, madly. Let 
the railway mania bear out the first assertion ; and the 
caresses lavished on the witty, but the worthless, support 
the other. 

Again and again do the heedless and the rash thus 
reason : 

"An unprincipled fellow! in private life far from 
exemplary; but as to banishing him from one's table, 
the idea is too preposterous — the penalty would be self- 
inflicted — his conversational powers are of the very first 
order; and his aptness at repartee unrivalled !" 


Or thus : 

" That clever creature, , called here this morn- 
ing. One must forget all one hears about him. In 
truth, much may be pardoned in a man of his intellect !" 

But, in sober earnest, intellect is a curse — a heavy and 
a frightful curse — when the control of principle and the 
sanction of reason are absent. 

Many years ago — how many I don't choose at this 
moment to remember — I met Edmund Kean at the house 
of his early patron, Mr. Nation, of Exeter. Kean was 
not then the leading tragedian at Drury Lane — the pet 
of Lords Byron, Essex, and Kinnaird ; the idol of " The 
Sub-Committee;" feted, followed, and flattered; but an 
obscure actor on a paltry salary of a few shillings a week ; 
struggling for a maintenance on the Exeter boards ; valued 
far more for his fencing and dancing than for his elocution 
and acting. His heels, not his head, constituted at that 
time of day his recommendation. 

Mr. Nation, a shrewd, keen, clever man — independent 
alike in purse and feeling ; whose delight it was to foster 
rising genius ; who never spurned a fellow-creature from 
his presence because he was wretchedly clad, or pro- 
nounced an erring mortal irreclaimable because the gos- 
sips ran him down — came to the rescue of Kean's fortunes 
with kindly and generous sympathy, and proved himself, 
when most needed, a judicious and discriminating friend. 
It was in vain that the old gentleman's intimates. Dr. 
Collins and Mr. Paddon, rallied him upon his preposses- 
sion in favor of the " little fencer," and the confidence 
with which he prophesied his future eminence. He was 
firm in his attachments, and not easily shaken in his 

"Once fairly before a London audience, he will elec- 
trify the house !" was the banker's uniform reply to 
various cavillers. 

" But his voice," said one — " so harsh, so rough, so 

" Musical and sweet in the extreme, particularly in the 
earlier scenes ; and so continues, till passion and over- 
exertion unduly strain it." 

"His figure, so slight, petit, and unimposing! — height 
under six feet — a defect fatal to a tragedian !" 

" Counterbalanced by his eye, unequalled for the bril- 


liancy and variet}?^ of its expression since the days of 
Garrick : him I can remember." 

" To Kean's indisputable disadvantage, I should 
imagine," said, somewhat flippantly, an inconsiderate 

"No, Sir," was Mr. Nation's reply, "by no means; 
and ere long London critics will tell you that Kean has 
studied in Garrick's school, and is but slightly inferior 
to his gifted predecessor." 

" And this," whispered the gentleman as he withdrew, 
"of that little, dark-visaged man, one remove from a 
strolling player. Good Mr. Nation ! with some men 
prejudices are passions." 

It was not so with him. Where he was most in 
earnest he was most guarded. 

His advice to Kean, like the aid which he rendered 
him, was always delicately given, and opportune. In 
the actor's moments of despondency — and they were 
many— he invariably pointed to a bright future ; cheered 
him with auguries of future eminence ; prophesied suc- 
cess, and told him that wealth — not mere competence, 
but afiiuence — lay before him. "And then," added he, 
" mind and keep your elbow straight : you understand 

There was ample need then, as well as afterwards, of 
ohis caution. 

Miss Hake — a little, quiet, staid, orderly body — a 
feather-dresser — was Kean's landlady at Exeter. She 
was rather attached to him, much to Mrs. Kean, and 
still more warmly to little Howard, their eldest-born ; 
and bore, for his sake, with many of his father's vagaries. 

But occasionally even her equanimity gave way. She 
presented herself one morning in Southernhay, her little 
frame quivering with agitation, and "entreated to see 
Mr. Nation, without delay, on urgent business." The 
banker was just recovering from a severe fit of the gout 
— he was a martyr to it — declared he was not company 
for ladies, and begged to decline the interview. Miss 
Hake persevered ; and, when she sent up a second mes- 
sage, to the effect that her business related to Mr. Kean, 
the invalid at once adjusted his wig, declared that " the 
lady's wishes were commands," and became at once sub- 
missive. The little feather-dresser, on being admitted, 


gave way to a torrent of tears ; and, when her agitation 
permitted her to articulate, declared that "Mr. Kean 
was missing!" He had come home, she averred, from 
the theatre, terribly out of sorts ; some remark, hastily 
made, had increased his displeasure ; he had then com- 
mitted the most horrible devastation upon her furniture 
and moveables ; and had taken himself off, no one knew 

"How long has he been absent?" asked Mr. Nation, 
somewhat anxiously. 

"Upwards of eight-and-forty hours." 

" Oh !" returned the oracle, confidently, " he will re- 
turn. It is his habit to start off in this manner when 
offended. His predilection for a ramble is notorious; 
particularly on one of his Satan days. Be calm, Madam, 
he will be with you before sunset." 

" Oh ! but" — sobbed Miss Hake — " my house ! my 
house ! I don't care about my furniture. But my house ! 
The character of my house ! Oh that I should have lived 
to have had an uproar in My house at twenty minutes 
past midnight. Think of this, Mr. Nation : twenty min- 
utes past midnight !" 

" That's somewhere about the hour that rows generally 
commence," said the gouty gentleman, quietly. 

"Oh, Sir, don't be jocular!" cried Miss Hake, in an 
agony for her reputation : " Ladies of the very first 
fashion visit my quiet dwelling — quiet, indeed, it no 
longer is — relative to their feathers and their trimmings. 
What will Lady Elizabeth Palk say, when she hears that 
there has been a perfect hurricane in my dwelling, at 
twenty minutes past midnight ? And my Lady Mallet 
Vaughan, who is known to be so particular. What will 
she say ? What will she think ? Oh ! I'm a ruined 
woman! Oh! oh! oh!" 

" I'll stake my credit upon the issue that neither of 
their Ladyships will ever hear one syllable on the sub- 
ject," rejoined the gentleman bluntly. 

Miss Hake was still far from appeased. 

"Counsel me, Mr. Nation, pray, counsel me!" cried 

"I will: and my advice shall consist of four words; 
' Be silent and quiescent :' follow this, and all will be 


" Ah ! but my feelings are wounded — deeply wounded 
— grievously wounded." 

"I have a plaster, Madam, that has been very efficaci- 
ous in such cases. Indeed, I have never known it to 
fail." This was uttered with a dash of sarcasm ; a con- 
versational weapon in which he excelled. " Its healing 
powers are remarkable, and acknowledged by all ranks." 
Thus saying, he drew from a small shagreen case a soiled 
piece of paper — one of his own one-pound notes ; such 
were current in those days — and handed it to his visitor. 
" Give it a trial, Madam. Its soothing powers are highly 
spoken of." 

The little feather-dresser smiled, sighed, curtsied, 
opened her hand, closed it, and withdrew. 

" There's somewhat too much of the devil about 
Teddy," soliloquized the banker as the door closed upon 
his lady visitor ; " but he is not to be ' whistled down the 
wind,' and abandoned as incorrigible, for all that!" 

The after-career of this gifted but unmanageable artist 
is almost too painful to dwell upon. Opulence, influence, 
independence, all were within his reach ; and all passed, 
by his own acts, from his grasp. It has been accurately 
ascertained that, during his successful career, no less a 
sum than ninety thousand pounds was paid into Kean's 
hands. Of this large amount, when disease, infirmity, 
and physical decaj^ came on, what trace remained ? 

His early friend in Southernhay survived to witness his 
triumph ; was present at his enthusiastic reception, as 
THE GREAT TRAGEDIAN, by crowdcd audicuces, on those 
very boards where, a few months previously, public sup- 
port had barely kept him from starvation. 

"Ah! well!" was the characteristic comment uttered 
as the curtain fell, amidst reiterated rounds of applause, 
waving of handkerchiefs, and shouts of " Bravo !" — " We 
have reached the topmost round of the ladder ; all we 
now want is a steady hand and a straight elbow P'' 

The speaker was Mr. Nation ; and the comment 
shewed his correct estimate of Kean's dangers and 
besetting sin. 

His days closed gloomily and sadly. True, he was 
abandoned by those who would gladly have done life- 
long homage to his genius ; but had he not previously 
severed himself, virtually, from reputable society ? There 


are those who maintain that " every thing is to be forgiven 
to a man of talent." If this dogma — a most pernicious 
one for society — is to be held good, Kean is undoubtedly 
to be pitied, as an injured and ill-used man. Let us pass 
from this sad topic. It points but to one conclusion: 
that genius, unregulated, unchecked, and uncontrolled, 
is one of the greatest and heaviest curses with which 
frail humanity can be visited. 

Contemporary with Kean, at Exeter, was another spirit 
on whom genius, lofty and indisputable, lighted — Mr. 
Nation's pastor and personal friend — Dr. Lant Carpenter. 
He filled the post afterwards occupied by the benevolent 
and universally beloved Mr. Manning. Dr. Carpenter's 
views were Unitarian. But though differing widely as to 
religious sentiments, that circumstance will never indis- 
pose me to the attempt of doing justice to the acquire- 
ments of a learned, and the social excellencies of a most 
amiable, man. At the period I remember him he was 
giving at his chapel a series of elaborate lectures on 
doctrinal views. One, written with peculiar point and 
polish, treated " Of the Sorrows of the Lost." These, 
he held, were not eternal. 

"I never like him so little," exclaimed the banker, 
bluntly, " as when he dwells on these difficult doctrinal 

" He never appears to such slight advantage," mur- 
]nured a sweet voice at his side. It was that of his 
daughter — afterwards Mrs. Adams — lost, alas ! too early 
to her family, and to the many who loved and lamented 

" He will be here this evening," continued Mr. Nation; 
" and if a fair opportunity present itself, I shall be tempted 
to refer to the subject." 

Dr. Carpenter did call, and his views were adroitly 
adverted to. Far from shunning the topic, he seemed 
well pleased to discuss it anew. He maintained, in elo- 
quent terms, his opinions, as to the individuality of the 
soul. He avowed his fixed persuasion that all the myriads 
of human beings who ever lived and moved upon this 
earth, still lived, and were at that very moment in exist- 
ence, all together. The old world, he maintained, still 
lived. "All of whom we read in the Old Testament as 
having perished by famine, by pestilence, by the sword. 


still live. No soul can be swept away* It is still 

" In a distinct and separate place?" 

" Unquestionably ! Each soul is reserved by its Mighty 
Guardian for separate and distinct award." 

" Where ?" was the inquiry uttered by more than one 
of his auditory. 

" That we are not permitted to know." 

The old gentleman paused for some minutes after his 
pastor left him. Then^ addressing his daughter, he 
remarked — 

" Those views of Dr. Carpenter seem to me to favour 
the doctrine of purgatory." 

" Oh!" returned his hearer with earnestness, " that we 
heard less about doctrine and more about duty j and that 
he who is so exemplary and forbearing, himself, in his 
own life and conversation, would tell us more of what 
we owe to the Great Ruler above, and our fellow-men 
around us." 

Her father signified his assent. 

" I never knew any man the better for controversy," 
added he ; "but can recollect many minds which have 
been unhinged by it. It will be well, should this line of 
preaching be proceeded with, if the Doctor's name be not 
added to the mournful catalogue." 

Years afterwards this apprehension was fulfilled. The 
well-stored brain yielded to the ceaseless demands made 
upon its powers. The Doctor became insane. Travel 
and change of scene were prescribed. The invalid visited 
Switzerland and Italy , and, in the spring of 1840, was 
drowned on his voyage to Leghorn. Whether an acci- 
dental lurch of the vessel sent him overboard, or whether, 
in the phrensy of disease, he committed self-destruction, 
none can tell. He perished without other witness save 
the Infinite and the Eternal. 

And thus that gentle, benevolent, tolerant being passed 
from this lower world. 

Oh ! Genius ! is thy possession to be coveted when thy 
purchase is made at so dear a cost? 



" To exhort to sacrifices — to stimulate to exertion — to shame despond- 
ency — to divert from untimely concession — are stern but needful duties 
to be discharged in gloomy times." — Burke. 

" He knew nothing of that timid and wavering cast of mind, which 
dares not abide by its own decision." — Lord Brougham. 

" It is a severe but salutary lesson for human vanity to observe the 
venom which party spirit can scatter over the aims and intentions of 
eminent men. The actions of the best and most highly gifted of our race, 
when viewed in the mirror of party-feeling, become instantly distorted. 
Conciliation is called cowardice ; courtesy is termed hypocrisy ; high and 
unbending principle is pronounced pride ; and religious feeling branded 
as cant. No epithet is deemed too bitter — no insinuation too base. By 
his own party the minister of the day is viewed as a demi-god ; by his 
opponents as a demon." 

"I WAS present," writes Mr. Hastings to a friend, 
" and heard Sheridan's analysis of my character, inquisi- 
tion of my motives, and condemnation of my government. 
For the moment, I thought myself unworthy of the 
name of man, and that " monster " ought to be my future 
design ition. The delusion lasted not long. The impres- 
sion produced by this splendid instance of the perversion 
of oratory gave way before the response of conscience ; 

' Oonscia mens recti temnit mendacia lingtue.' " 

•Some few years elapsed, and the whole House of Com- 
mons rose as a tribute of involuntary respect to this very 
man upon his entering that august assembly to give evi- 
dence upon some disputed question ! 

Of Lord North, Junius writes, " I will now leave you, 
my lord, to that mature insensibility which is only to be 
acquired by steady perseverance in infamy. Every prin- 
ciple of conscience you have long ago been hardy enough 
to discards" 


Of the same statesman another and very competent 
authority^ affirms : " Lord North was a man of public 
ability, the delight of every private society which he 
honoured with his presence, second to none in conduct- 
ing the debate, possessed of an inexhaustible fund of 
pleasantry, and of a temper the last to be ruffled, and 
the first to be appeased." 

The malevolence of party, Canning did not escape. 
The author of the celebrated suppressed letter, thus 
opened his attack upon him : — 

" I shall address you without ceremony, for you are 
deserving of none. There is nothing in your station, in 
your abilities, or in your character, which entitles you to 
respect. The first is too often the reward of political, 
and frequently of private crimes. The decency of your 
character consists in its entire conformity to the original 
conception formed of you in early life. It has borrowed 
nothing from station, nothing from experience. It be- 
comes you.) and vi'ould disgrace anij other manr 

These are harsh and ungrateful assertions. They are 
worse than this — they are unjust. In private life, Mr. 
Canning was as exemplary as in social intercourse he was 
delightful. As a son, his care for his widowed parent — 
the provision which he made for her by a transfer of the 
pension tendered him for his public services — his affec- 
tionate attention to her wishes during the busiest and 
most successful portion of his intoxicating career — the 
long weekly letter which he wrote to her, according to 
an early promise — a promise never broken even in the 
most anxious and stormy period of his life — prove his to 
have been a heart alive to the noblest impulses of our 
nature. But more than this : to the sentiment of filial 
affection, which he preserved unimpaired throughout the 
whole course of his advancement, he delighted to do 
homage in others. Two days before his departure for 
Chiswick, whence he never returned, he sent for a young 
man whom he had heard favourably spoken of, and who, 
he learnt upon inquiry, had for years supported a para- 
ytic mother and idiot sister. 

" I have requested to see you, Mr.- — — ," was his open- 
ing address, when the young man, in utter ignorance of 

' Professor Smytbe, 


his intentions, presented himself at the premier's resi- 
dence, " in the hope you may be able to tell me how I 
can serve you." 

A vague and not very intelligible reply was confusedly 

" Then, perhaps, you v^^ill allow me to make a sugges- 
tion? Would such a situation," naming one, " be at all 
compatible with your views?" 

It was cordially and thankfully accepted. 

" The appointment will be made out to-morrow. I 
give it you entirely from respect. I admire your abilities 
much, but I honour your devotion to your family still 

This feeling, so identified with his character, many of 
his political antagonists were unable to understand. 
Some of them were even base enough to make it an 
object of attack, and sought to wound him through his 
filial affection. His sensitiveness, on this point, was pecu- 
liar. Any unfeeling allusion to Mrs. Hunn galled him to 
the quick. No attack did he resent so fiercely. For one 
who did not on occasion spare others, his temperament was 
singularly irritable. The point of indifference was never 
reached by him. He was never able to conceal that 
sensitiveness to political attacks which their frequent 
occurrence wears out in most English politicians. 

The period which he spent at Hinckley, during the 
interval which elapsed between his retirement from office 
after the duel with Lord Castlereagh, and his entrance 
upon the Lisbon embassy, was a remarkable epoch in his 
life. It was with him undoubtedly a season of compara- 
tive seclusion ; but it was one also of great and success- 
ful preparation. He lived at Burbach, a little village, 
distant about a mile from the town, which he had sought 
mainly for the benefit of his eldest son, whose health was 
in a most precarious condition, and whom he had placed, 
under the care of the well-known Mr. Cheshyre. 

This son — he died at the age of nineteen, and Mr. 
Canning's tribute to his memory is the most touching of 
all his writings — was a youth of remarkable promise, and 
indescribably dear to his father. He was indisputably 
his favourite child. In all his plans for the future, in 
all his visions of ambition, this son occupied a foremost 
place. He was an embryo statesman. His genius, dis- 


cernraent, quickness, and judgment, were topics on 
which Canning delighted to dwell. The opinions and 
expectations which his father had formed of him may be 
gathered from this single fact, ^ that whenever he had 
spoken at any length, in Parliament, the best and fullest 
report of the speech was sent down forthwith to George, 
who was required to write his father an elaborate and 
lengthened criticism upon it, pointing out where it was 
forcible and where it was defective, where the language 
was happy, and where it was common-place— and dis- 
tinguishing between what was mere declamation, and 
what solid argument. 

" Can I think too highly of that child ?" was the remark 
addressed by Canning on one occasion to his son's tutor, 
Mr. Hay. 

" You not only can, but do," was the honest and 
unhesitating reply. "Your second son is but little 
inferior to him in point of capacity ; and, after all, it 
may be that this infant" — pointing to Charles, who was 
born at Burbach — "may be the child destined to carry 
down to the succeeding generation your name and 

"J am 'persuaded lie will not,''^ was Canning's quick 
rejoinder. He was wrong. The random remark has 
proved prophetic. Captain Canning's career closed early ; 
and upon Charles, the infant adverted to and scarcely 
noticed, have devolved the honour of his name and the 
associations it recalls. 

With the exception of his struggles in early life, Can- 
ning's residence at Hinckley extended over one of the 
most gloomy periods of his life. Retirement from office,- 
under circumstances of painful notoriety, had been the 
result of his duel with Lord Castlereagh. Early in May, 
1812, Mr. Percival was shot by Bellingham. The Prince 
Regent then laid his commands on Lord Wellesley and 
Mr. Canning to form an administration. The project 
failed. The task was then intrusted to Lord Liverpool, 
who strongly urged Canning to join him ; and such was 
the anxiety of the existing administration to secure his 
services, that the Foreign Office was offered him — Lord 
Castlereagh being a consenting party to an arrangement 
which would leave it open to Mr. Canning's acceptance. 
This tempting proposal was firmly negatived, solely upon 


conscientious grounds. It was understood that the ad- 
ministration was pledged, as such, to oppose Catholic 
Emancipation. To this compact Canning declined being 
a party — and thus, while he preserved his consistency, 
and shewed, by the costly sacrifice which it entailed, the 
sincerity of his desire to carry the Catholic question, he 
lost the opportunity of presiding over the foreign rela- 
tions of the country, at a period when " events crowded 
into a few years the changes and revolutions of an age." 

But this interval, though spent in retirement, was 
fraught with preparation. There is a walk, as beautiful 
as it is secluded, stretching from Burbach towards the 
village of Stoke Golding, known as Canning's Walk. 
Along this he was seen, morning after morning, wending 
his way, always alone, absorbed in thought, and not 
unfrequently thinking aloud. He invariably declined 
having a companion for his walk, disliked amazingly 
being interrupted in the progress of it, and to any chance 
salutation by the way, his invariable reply was a silent bow. 

It was his hour of study. He was then forging weap- 
ons for the coming fight, inspecting his stores, and polish- 
ing his armory. No weather deterred him. Through 
shower and sunshine he paced rapidly on. What subjects 
might not these long silent walks embrace ! In them 
how many a topic, argument, simile, invective, rebuke, 
was deliberately sought out and carefully laid up! Of 
the exquisite and elaborate finish bestowed on many of 
his lengthened speeches, who shall say how much may 
be traced to the severe scrutiny and repeated revision of 
his solitary rambles ! The music of his periods, the easy 
flowing language with which he rounded the most un- 
manageable details, the remark of caustic irony, and the 
flash of cutting sarcasm, the epigrammatic point of a 
crushing reply, when a word more or less would have 
marred its force, — these are excellences which could not 
have been attained, in the perfection to which he wrought 
them, without long and severe study. Was this his 
workshop ? 

About a mile and a half from Burbach stands an old 
hall to which some interest attaches as being the 
residence which peculiarly attracted Canning's attention, 
and which he was most desirous to purchase as "an 
asylum for his old age.^'' Alas \ 


The offers which he made to induce the infataated 
possessor to part with it were far beyond its value, and 
can be justified only by the extraordinary predilection 
which Mr. Canning had conceived for it. The more you 
examine Wykin Hall, the greater difficulty you experience 
in discovering its attractions for the statesman. It is a 
quaint old building in the Elizabethan style, with huge 
and somewhat unshapely wings, much dilapidated by 
time, and, when I saw it, rapidly sinking to decay from 
continued and undeserved neglect. It stands close upon 
the horse-road leading to Stoke Golding, in an exposed 
and rather bleak situation. On each side of the principal 
entrance are two yew trees of prodigious growth and 
great age, which throw a sombre air over the building, 
and materially darken the lower rooms. A plantation 
rises on one side, and some unsightly farm-buildings on 
the other. In the background is the straggling, filthy, 
poaching village of Stoke Golding, perched on the sum- 
mit of a high hill, topped with its handsome church and 
splendid spire. In the foreground is a home view of 
rich pasture land, skirted to the left by Burbach Wood, 
and embracing to the right the town of Hinckley, its 
parish church and tapering spire. 

Wykin Hall is now a farm-house; the little lawn 
before the principal entrance is converted into a fold- 
yard. Poultry ravage the pleasure-garden — weeds flour- 
ish ad libitum, in the plantation — the litter of a large farm 
is scattered thickly around the premises ; and not one 
feature does it present, within or without, to corroborate 
tho fact that it was once the coveted residence of one of 
the most accomplished of British statesmen. 

The passion for farming cherished by Mrs. Canning at 
that period, might, in some degree, account for his wish 
to purchase Wykin. Some valuable grazing land was 
attached to it ; and a dairy, not in theory, but in practice, 
was then that lady's hobby. Some very pleasant and 
good-natured stories are current of her devotion to her 
calling, while the fit lasted — of her anxiety respecting 
the produce of her dairy — her quickness in calculating 
her gains, and her shrewdness in baffling the cunning of 
those who, on more than one occasion, sought to make 
her their dupe. 

" She had a brave tongue and a clear head, had that 


Madam Canning," said an old yeoman to me. " The 
ways of Providence are inscrutable : but I've aye thought 
to mysel while I've been listening to her, that the bonni- 
est farmer's wife in all Leicestershire had been spoiled 
by making a lady on her!" 

Canning's readiness as a parliamentary debater is now 
matter of history. In reply, he stood confessedly with- 
out a rival. His quickness in detecting and instantly 
fastening upon a broken link in his opponent's argument 
— his skill in unveiling a specious sophistry, or exposing 
a plausible fallacy, have once and again drawn forth the 
involuntary cheers, even of those who eschewed his 
political creed. One peculiarity he possessed, which is 
but partially known — his thorough remembrance of a voice, 
and his ability of connecting it, at any interval of time, 
with the party to whom it belonged. More than one 
instance of this faculty is remembered at Hinckley. 

He was dining with a large party at Mr. Cheshyre's, 
the medical gentleman before referred to, when a note 
was brought in and handed to the host, with an 
intimation that the bearer begged to see him for five 

Mr. C. left his party with reluctance, and was absent 
some time. When he returned, he prefaced his lengthy 
apologies by observing, he " had been detained by one 
of the most remarkable men of the day;" that the gen- 
tleman " was by accident passing through Hinckley, and 
could not pause on his route;" that he "purposed placing 
one of his family under his (Mr. Cheshyre's) care;" and. 
that " he (Mr. C.) was obliged to listen to all his ar- 

" I will name him," said Canning, gaily, " and then 
drinli his health." 

"The latter point may be very easily managed ; but 
the former will, I believe, baffle even your acuteness, Mr. 

This was said with some degree of tartness ; for among 
other affectations which the wealthy quack indulged in, 
was that of profound mystery with respect to the most 
trivial occurrences. 

" Your visitor, sir, was Wilberforce," said Canning, 

"How could you possibly discover that?" cried his 


annoyed host. " We conversed with closed doors — he 
sent in no card — as we parted, he spoke but five words." 

" Of which I heard but two." 

"What were they?" 

"Conventional arrangement," said Canning, imitating 
Wilberforce's distinct enunciation, and dwelling on each 
separate syllable. " I needed nothing more to tell me 
that the man with the magic voice was hovering near 

Within a few months after this conversation, Sir Evan 
Nepean passed through Hinckley; he was proceeding to 
Holyhead, on some government business connected with 
the Transport Board, which admitted of no delay: and 
so rapid were his movements, and so anxious was he to 
arrive at his destination, that, though a part of his family 
was at Hinckley under Mr. Cheshyre's care, he hurried 
through the town without even apprising them of his 

While changing horses at the inn, he inquired the 
distance to the next stage. These were the only words 
he uttered. Canning was returning from his ride at the 
moment — heard the inquiry, and said to Sir Evan's family, 
the next morning : — " I am happy to tell you Nepean is 
is well — he passed through Hinckley last evening— his 
features in the twilight I was unable to recognize — his 
voice I did distinctly." 

Their astonishment may be conceived. It bordered on 
incredulity. But, on inquiry, they found Mr. Canning's 
assertion borne out by the fact, that on that day and hour 
their relative had hurried through Hinckley on his route 
to Ireland. 

This faculty seems to have remained unimpaired to 
the close of life. On the evening preceding his, last 
appearance in the House of Commons, a foreigner met 
him in the lobby, and bowing, expressed his "pleasure 
at seeing him look so well." 

'Twas an idle compliment. Fatigue, anxiety, and 
party-feeling were killing him hourly. 

He acknowledged the intended civility with his usual 
courtesy, and adding, he " hoped his lady and son were 
better," moved away. 

The foreigner ran after him and said : " Curiosity in- 
duces me to ask whether vou know me?" 


" Your voice I recognize, not your person : you are 

Mr. . We last met in Lisbon in the year 1815. I 

saw you under circumstances of great distress," 

" Once! and for a few minutes only /" 

" Your wife and son were pronunced to be dying — I 
am truly happy to learn they are still preserved to you. 
Good night, Sir." 

" What a most extraordinary man !" said the gratified 
foreigner as, turning away from him with another and 
still more profound obeisance, he rejoined his compa- 
nion, and fellow-countryman — "What a wonderful me- 
mory, to remember such an obscure individual as myself, 
after so long an interval — and not only myself, but the 
very circumstances under the pressure of which his 
kindly sympathy cheered and consoled me." 

These are trifles, I admit ; but trifles often index the 
character of the man. And his has not yet received that 
measure of justice which it merits from those to whom 
he adhered in either fortune, and with whom he won the 
triumph — the triumph of reason over rashness, — of 
sound principles over doctrines dangerous and pernicious, 
— of our ancient laws and glorious constitution over 
revolutionary madness and Jacobin innovation. In a 
word, were I to describe his character briefly, I should 
say with the ancient historian, that he was " Vita inno- 
centissimus, ingenio florentissimus, proposito sanctissi- 

And He, be it remembered, was a Mason. We can 
point to this affectionate and dutiful son — to this watch- 
ful and devoted husband — to the successful debater — 
to the trusted and idolized chief — and claim him as a 

This is not assertion, but fact. 

George Canning, Esq., M. P., initiated and passed on 
the 30th of April, 1810, in the Somerset House Lodge, 
by the Right Hon. the Earl of Mountnorris, W. M. 
Proposed by the Earl of Mountnorris. 



" Small is the rest of those who would be smart, 

A moment's good thing may have cost them years 
Before they find an hour to introduce it, 
And then, even tlien, some bore may make them lose it." 

Lord Btron. 

Amid the smoke and dirt and eternal din of the modern 
Babel, there is some advantage to be gained by living 
within its precincts. One's privations, 'tis true, are 
many. Adieu to fresh air and pure water, and a clear 
atmosphere ! Adieu to the fresh springy turf, and the 
gay carol of the birds, and the music of the rustling leaf 
and the running stream ! But, then, the mighty of the 
earth are near us; and we mingle, at intervals and for 
the moment, with the illustrious in intellect, in learning, 
in eloquence, and in art — the master spirits of the age. 

During the period in which the firm of " Hurst and 
Robinson, of Pall-mall," held a conspicuous place in the 
world of letters, it was my fortune to be present at one 
of their public days. Sir Walter Scott, and Maturin, the 
author of " Melmoth," and Lsetitia Hawkins, and the 
Porters — (who that has ever read them will forget 
" Thaddeus of Warsaw" and the " Recluse of Norway?") 
— and the accomplished authoress of " Rome in the Nine- 
teenth Century," and Gifford, the editor of the " Quar- 
terly," and the eccentric, but ill-fated Colton, were 
among those who were gathered around that hospitable 
table. Alas! upon how many of these the grave has 
closed for ever! 

To this hour, I remember the impression which the 
language, opinions, and ardour of the last-named gifted 
being left upon his auditors. He had entered, half in jest 
and half in earnest, into an ingenious and lengthy argu- 
ment with Gilford, that the sun was the residence of 
suffering spirits ; in a word, that that luminary was hell ' 


Now GrifFord, with all his critical acumen and vast 
resources, was no debater ; he wanted temper, he chafed 
when contradicted, and in reply was querulous and wasp- 
ish. His remarks under excitement ceased to be inge- 
nious, and became personal and acrimonious. It may, 
therefore, easily be imagined that Colton had the best of 
it, even on this apparently desperate position. 

GifTord saw this, and waxed still more angry ; and the 
debate had assumed an almost personal turn, when Sir 
Walter put an end to it by good-humouredly observing, 
" Well, well, gentlemen, pray settle it your own way ; 
for my own part, I desire no further light on the subject. 
May I ever remain in my present profound state of igno- 
rance ! 

Of him, I grieve to say, my impressions are by no means 
so distinct. He was not, then, the acknowledged author 
of " Waverley," and the other magnificent creations of 
the same fertile brain ; and the deference paid to him, 
then, though great, was not the same, either in nature 
or amount, as that subsequently awarded him. 

I remember his telling a very amusing little tale touch- 
ing the storming of an eagle's eyrie in the Highlands, to 
a slight, fair-haired little girl, who sat by his side during 
some part of the evening, and to whom, though always 
extremely partial to children, he seemed to have taken a 
sudden fancy. Of one fact, I have a thorough recollec- 
tion. The conversation happened to turn incidentally 
upon the malady of the late king. He remarked, " He 
always hoped he should die before his faculties became 
extinct. To survive their decay was, to his mind, the 
GREATEST CALAMITY wMcli coulcl bcfal a thinking being." 

Maturin here reminded him of the incident recorded in 
the life of Dean Swift, namely, that almost immediately 
previous to his aberration of intellect, Swift, while walk- 
ing in the park, paused before a majestic oak, green and 
flourishing in its lower branches, but decayed and leaf- 
less at the summit, and pointing to it, said : " I shall be 
like that tree — I shall die at top." 

" I have often, Sir," rejoined Scott, slowly and thought- 
fully, " mused upon that expression ; and many as are 
the touching sentiments which the Dean has uttered, that, 
I think, in simple pathos, is superior to them all." 

Grifford here struck in : " The texture of Swift's mind 


disposed him to insanity. He saw every thing around 
him through a distorted medium." 

"But his writings," Maturin quietly observed, "are 
remarkably lucid, as well as forcible. At least" — he 
quickly added, observing the frown that was gathering 
on Gifford's brow—" such they appear to me." 

" Sir, he was a disappointed man," said GifFord, gloomi- 
ly and fiercely ; " he possessed great talents, which 
brought not to their owner the advancement he desired. 
The gloom of his own prospects infected his writings ; 
he thought harshly of human nature. But," he added, 
after a moment's pause, with an expression of bitter 
satisfaction, which is perfectly indescribable, " one qua- 
lity he possessed in perfection : he was a good hater 1''^ 

" No very enviable faculty, after all, Mr. Gifford," said 
Sir Walter, with an easy, good-humoured smile. 

" Rather an equivocal encomium to pass on a man, to 
say that he is a good hater," said Colton, tittering. 

" Sir," said Gifford, looking from one to the other with 
an eye that seemed to sjjeok — (if the reader will pardon such 
an expression). For the moment, he seemed uncertain 
which he should gore. At length, fixing on Colton, he 
burst out with : — 

" Priest, read your Bible : Scripture bids us ' pray for 
our enemies,' and ' love our enemies :' but nowhere does 
it bid us TRUST our enemies. Nay, it positively cautions 
us against it. Read your Bible, priest — read your Bible." 

" But Swift was a poet," said Maturin, anxiously 
interposing, in the hope of quelling the storm ; " and are 
not poets privileged to live in a world of their own ? 

" You do, Madam," said Gifford, with a smile so awfully 
grim, so bitterly gracious, that the muscles of a marble 
statue, methought, would have relaxed more easily; 
" and your world," turning to Miss Jane Porter, " is 
full of "bright thoughts and happy images." 

The handsome novelist bowed and smiled, but not a 
word escaped her. At this moment, a buz, or rather 
whisper, ot^ — 

"Lawrence, Lawrence," went round the room; and in 
a few moments, the prince of modern portrait-painters 
joined the circle. 

He — be his prejudices and prepossessions what they 
may — who had ever the good fortune to meet, in society, 


the late Sir Thomas Lawrence, must have been struck 
with that graceful address and winning manner which so 
warmly endeared him to his friends, and rendered him so 
great a favourite with his Royal Patron. It was not the 
mere conventional politeness of society, manifested alike 
to all, and often worn as a mask to hide the bitter and 
goading passions of envy, avarice, and hatred; but a 
kindness and cordiality of feeling, which seemed to aim 
at making others happy, and appeared to spring fresh 
from the heart. His person was very striking. He bore 
a remarkable resemblance to Canning. He knew it, and 
was proud of it. But his temper, calm, even, and self- 
possessed, had no affinity to the irritable, restless, anxi- 
ous, morbid temperament of that singularly gifted states- 
man. Having, in his usual quiet, graceful manner, paid 
his compliments to those of the party with w^honi he was 
previously acquainted, he singled out Maturin, as the 
object of his special attentions. He expressed, in few, 
but forcible terms, his "gratification at meeting one 
whose writings had beguiled him of many a weary 
hour." There was something kind in this; for Maturin 
was at that time struggling into fame, and notice from 
such a man as Lawrence could not be otherwise than 

" So," — said Giffbrd, testily, as the president paused 
oeside his chair with a kind and courteous inquiry, — " so 
you have found me out at last, have ye? Humph! much 
flattered by your notice ! Humph ! Have you seen the 
King lately?" 

■" I left his Majesty but an hour ago," was the reply. 

" And what may be the ruling whim of the moment?" 

To this enquiry no answer was given, for Lawrence, 
with admirable tact, affected not to hear the question. 

" The King's private collection," Sir Walter Scott 
interposed, with the charitable intention of giving a more 
amicable turn to the conversation, " is understood to 
have lately received some very valuable accessions." 

"Such is the fact," said Sir Thomas, warmly; "and 
the British School of Art is, at this moment, cheered by 
no small share of the royal favour!" 

"His Majesty did not always boast so pure a taste," 
said Gilford, who, from some unexplained slight, could 
never resist the temptation of giving a quiet hit at the 


Crown ; "his pursuits, within my recollection, tended 
quite another way." 

" His Majesty's taste for art, and his munificent patron- 
age of it, have known no change or abatement since I 
had the honour of being admitted to his presence," said 
Lawrence, mildly, but firmly. 

Some uniniportant remarks followed. He then bow- 
ed profoundly to Giffbrd, and took his leave. His depart- 
ure was the signal for the breaking up of the party. 



L. E. L. closes one of her sportive poems with the 
heartfelt exclamation— 

" Thank Heaven that I never 
Can be a child again ! " 

The remark falls harshly from a woman's lip ; and, 
after all, does not admit of general application. There 
are those who were never children — with whom the 
heart was never young. There are those who never 
knew that brief but happy period when the spirit was a 
stranger to guile, — and the heart beat high with gene- 
rous impulses, — and the future was steeped in the 
colours of hope,-— and the past left behind it no sting of 
bitterness, — and the brow was unwrinkled with care,— 
aud the soul unsullied by crime, — and the lips poured 
forth, fondly and fervently, with unbounded and unwa- 
vering confidence, the heart's purest and earliest homage 
to Nature and to Truth. And he whose career, on the 
second anniversary of his death, I am tempted to re- 
cord, was a living illustration of the truth of this asser- 

Vincent Desborough's prospects and position in society 
embraced all that an ambitious heart would seek. He 
was heir to a large fortune — had powerful connections — 
talents of no common order — and indisputable personal 
attractions. But every good, natural and acquired, was 
marred by a fatal flaw in his disposition. It was largely 
leavened with cruelty. It seemed born with him. For 
it was developed in very early childhood, and bade de- 
fiance to remonstrance and correction. Insects, dogs, 


horses, servants, all felt its virulence. And yet, on a 
first acquaintance, it appeared incredible that that intel- 
ligent and animated countenance, those gladsome and 
beaming eyes, could meditate aught but kindness and 
good-will to those around him. But as Lord Byron said 
of Ali Pacha — one of the most cruel and sanguinary of 
Eastern despots — that he was " by far the mildest-looking 
old gentleman he ev^er conversed with ;" so it might be 
said of Vincent Desborough, that never was a relentless 
and savage heart concealed under a more winning and 
gentle exterior. 

That parents are blind to the errors of their offspring 
has passed into a proverb, and Vincent's were no excep- 
tion to the rule. " He was a boy," they affirmed, " of 
the highest promise." His ingenuity in causing pain 
was " a mere childish foible, which would vanish with 
advancing years ;" and his delight at seeing others suffer 
it, " an eccentricity which more extended acquaintance 
with life would teach him to discard. All boys were 
cruel!'''' And satisfied with the wisdom of this conclu- 
sion, the Desboroughs intrusted their darling to Doctor 
Scanaway, with the request that "he might be treated 
with every possible indulgence." 

"No!" said the learned linguist, loudly and sternly, 
" not if he was heir-presumptive to the dukedom of 
Devonshire ! Your son you have thought proper to 
place with me. For that preference I thank you. But 
if he remains with me, he must rough it like the rest. 
You have still the power of withdrawing him." 

Papa and Mamma Desborough looked at each other 
m evident consternation, and stammered out a disjointed 
disclaimer of any such intention. 

" Very well ! — Coppinger," said he, calling one of the 
senior boys, " take this lad away with you into the school- 
room, and put a Livy into his hands. My pupils I aim 
at making men, not milksops — scholars, not simpletons. 
To do this I must have your entire confidence. If that 
be withheld, your son's luggage is still in the Hall, and I 
beg that he and it may be again restored to your car- 

" By no means," cried the Desboroughs in a breath ; 
and silenced, if not satisfied, they made their adieus and 



In Doctor Scanaway*s household Vincent met with a 
congenial spirit in the person of a youth some years his 
senior, named Gervaise RoUeston. G ervaise was a young 
adventurer. He was clever, active, and prepossessing ; 
but he was poor and dependent. He discovered that, at 
no very distant period, accumulated M^ealth must descend 
to Vincent, and he fancied that, by submitting to his 
humours and flattering his follies, he might secure to 
himself a home in rough weather. The other had no 
objection to possess a faithful follower. In truth, a 
clever coadjutor was often indispensable for the success- 
ful execution of his mischievous projects. Mutual ne- 
cessity thus proved a stringent bond to both ; and 
between them a league was struck up, offensive and 
defensive, which, like other leagues on a broader scale 
which are supported by wealth and wickedness, was 
formidable to all who opposed its designs and move- 


Domiciled in the little village of Horbury, over which 
the learned doctor ruled with undisputed sway, was " a 
widow, humble of spirit and sad of heart, for of all the 
ties of life, one son alone was spared her ; and she loved 
him with a melancholy love, for he was the likeness of 
the lost." Moreover, he was the last of his race, the 
only surviving pledge of a union too happy to endure ; 
and the widow, while she gazed on him with that air of 
resigned sorrow peculiar to her countenance — an air 
which had banished the smile, but not the sweetness, 
from her lips — felt that in him were concentrated all the 
ties which bound her to existence. 

" Send Cyril to me," said the doctor to Mrs. Dormer, 
when he called to welcome her to the village. "No 
thanks — I knew his father — respected him — loved him. 
I like an old family — belong to one myself, though I 
have still to learn the benefit it has been to me !" 

" I fear," replied the widow, timidly, for the recollec- 
tion of very limited resources smote painfully across her, 
"at least I feel the requisite pecuniary consideration " 

** He shall pay when he's a fellow of his college — shall 


never know it before ! You've nothing to do with it— - 
but THEN I shall exact it ! We will dine in his rooms at 
Trinity, and he shall lionize us over the building. I have 
long wished to see Dr. Wordsworth — good man — sound 
scholar ! but have been too busy these last twenty years 
to manage it. It's a bargain, then? You'll send him 
to-morrow ?" 

And the affectionate interest which the doctor took in 
little Cyril, the pains he bestowed on his progress, and 
the evident anxiety with which he watched and aided 
the development of his mind, were among the many 
fine traits of character which belonged to this warm- 
hearted but unpolished humorist. 

To Dormer, for some undefinable reason, Desborough 
had conceived the most violent aversion. Neither tbe 
youth of the little orphan, nor his patient endurance of 
insult, nor the readiness with which he forgave, nor the 
blamelessness of his own disposition, served to disarm 
the ferocity of his tormentor. Desborough, to use his 
own words, was " resolved to drive the little pauper from 
their community, or tease his very heart out." 

His love for his mother, his fair and effeminate appear- 
ance, his slender figure and diminutive stature, were the 
objects of his tormentor's incessant attack. " Complain, 
Dormer — complain at home," was the advice given him 
by more than one of his class-fellows. 

" It would only grieve my mother," he replied, in his 
plaintive, musical voice, " and she has had much — oh ! 
so much — to distress her. I might, too, lose my present 
advantages ; and the good doctor is so very, very lenient 
to me. Besides, surely, Desborough will become kinder 
by-and-by, even if he does not grow weary of ill-treating 

And thus, cheered by Hope, the little martyr strug- 
gled on, and suffered in silence. 

The 4th of September was the doctor's birth-day, and 
was invariably kept as a sort of Saturnalia by all under 
his roof. The day — always too short — was devoted 
to cricket, and revelry, and manly sports, and a 
meadow at the back of the shrubbery, which, from its 
being low and marshy, was drained by dykes of all 
dimensions, was a favourite resort of those who were 
expert at leaping with a pole. The whole party were 


in motion at an early hour, and Cyril among the rest. 
Either purposely or accidentally, he was separated from 
the others, and, on a sudden, he found himself alone with 
Desborough and Rolleston. " Come, you little coward," 
said the former, "leap this dyke." 

" I cannot, it is too broad ; and, besides, it is very 

" Cannot ! You mean will not. But you shall be 
made. Leap it, sir, this instant." 

" I cannot — indeed I cannot. Do not force me to try 
it; it is deep, and I cannot swim." 

" Then learn now. Leap it, you little wretch ! Leap 
it, I say, or I'll throw you in. Seize him, Rolleston. 
We'll teach him obedience." 

" Promise, me, then, that you will help me out," said 
the little fellow, entreatingly, and in accents that would 
have moved most hearts ; " promise me, do, promise me, 
for r feel sure that I shall fail." 

" We promise you," said the confederates, and they 
exchanged glances. The helpless victim trembled — 
turned pale. Perhaps the recollection of his doting and 
widowed parent came across him, and unnerved his little 
heart. "Let me off, Desborough; 'pray let me off," he 

" No ! you little dastard, no ! Over ! or I throw you 
in !'" 

The fierce glance of Desborough's eye, and the menace 
of his manner, determined him. He took a short run, 
and then boldly sprang from the bank. His misgivings 
were well-founded. The pole snapped, and in an instant 
he was in the middle of the stream. 

" Help ! help ! Your promise, Desborough — your 
promise !" 

With a mocking laugh, Desborough turned away. 
" Help yourself, my fine fellow ! Scramble out ; it's not 
deep. A kitten wouldn't drown !" And Rolleston, in 
whom better feelings for the moment seemed to struggle, 
and who appeared half inclined to return to the bank 
and give his aid, he dragged forcibly away. The little 
fellow eyed their movements, and seemed to feel his 
fate was determined. He clasped his hands, and uttered 
no further cry for assistance. The words " Mother I 
mother!" were heard to escape him ; and once, and only 


once, did his long wavy golden hair come up above the 
surface for a moment. But though no human ear heeded 
the death-cry of that innocent child, and no human heart 
responded to it, the Great Spirit had his observant eye 
fixed on the little victim, and quickly terminated his ex- 
perience of care and sorrow, by a summons to that world 
where the heavy laden hear no more the voice of the 
oppressor, and the pure in heart behold their God ! 


The grief of the mother was frightful to witness. Her 
softness and sweetness of character, the patience with 
which she had endured sorrow and reverses, the cheer- 
fulness with which she had submitted to the privations 
attendant on very limited resources, had given place to 
unwonted vehemence and sternness. She cursed the 
destroyers of her child in the bitterness of her soul. 
" God will avenge me ! His frown will darken their 
path to their dying hour. As the blood of Abel cried up 
from the ground against the first murderer, so the blood 
of my Cyril calls for vengeance on those who sacrificed 
him. I shall see it — I shall see it. The measure meted 
out by them to others, shall he measured, unto them againy It 
was in vain that kind-hearted neighbours suggested to 
her topics of consolation. She mourned as one that 
would not be comforted. " The only child of his mother, 
and she a widow!" was her invariable reply. "No! 
For me there is nought but quenchless regrets and 
ceaseless weeping!" Among those who tendered their 
friendly offices was the warm-hearted doctor. Indifferent 
to his approach, and in appearance lost to everything 
else around her, she was sitting among Cyril's books — • 
inspecting his little drawings — arranging his playthings, 
and apparently carefully collecting together every object, 
however trivial, with which his loved memory could be 

To the doctor's kind though tremulous inquiries she 
had but one reply : '■'■Alone — alone in the world.'" 

His ofier of a home in his own house was declined with 
the remark, " My summer is so nearly over, it matters 
not where the leaves fall." 

And when he pressed her, under any circumstances, to 


entertain the offer made through him — ^by a wealthy- 
kinsman of her husband — of a shelter under his roof for 
any period, however protracted — " Too late ! too late !" 
was her answer ; '■'■ A'fnbition is cold with the ashes of those we 

But the feelings of the mourner had been painfully 
exasperated by the result of a previous inquiry. An 
Inquest was indispensable ; and rumour — we may say 
facts — spoke so loudly against Desborough, that his 
parents hurried to Horbury, prepared, at any pecuniary 
sacrifice, to extricate him from the obloquy which threat- 
ened him. Money judiciously bestowed will effect im- 
possibilities ; and the foreman of the jury — a bustling, 
clamorous, spouting democrat — who was always eloquent 
on the wrongs of his fellow-men, and kept the while a 
most watchful eye to his own interests — became on a 
sudden '' thoroughly satisfied that Mr. Vincent Desborough 
had been cruelly calumniated," and that the whole affair 
was " a matter of accident altogether." 

A verdict to that effect was accordingly returned ! 

The unhappy mother heard the report of these pro- 
ceedings, and it seemed to scorch her very soul. " The 
covetous, craving earthworm !" she cried. "He thinks 
he has this day clenched a most successful bargain ! But 
no ! from this hour the face of God is against him ! Can 
it be otherwise ? He that justifieth the wicked, and condemn- 
eth the just, are they not both equal ahomiriatioji in the sight 
of God ? For years the wickedness of this hour will be 
present before the Great, Just Spirit, and will draw 
down a curse on his every project. I am as confident of 
it as if I saw the whole course of this man's after-life 
spread out before me. Henceforth God fights against him!'''' 

It was a curious coincidence, the solution of which is 
left to better casuists than myself, that from the hour in 
which he was bribed to smother inquiry and throw a 
shield over crime — misfortune and reverses, in unbroken 
succession, assailed him. His property melted away from 
his grasp with unexampled rapidity. And when, a few 
years afterwards, the kinsman already alluded to left 
poor Dormer's mother a small annuity, it so chanced 
that, as she quitted the vestry with the requisite certifi- 
cates of birth and marriage in her hands, she encountered 
this very juror in the custody of the parish officers, who 


were bringing him before the proper authorities, to swear 
him to his settlement, and then obtain an order to pass 
him forthwith to the parish workhouse ! 

A few years after the sad scene at Horbury, Desbo- 
rough was admitted at Cambridge. He was the sporting 
man of a non-reading college. Around him were gathered 
all the coaching, betting, driving, racing characters of the 
University — the ^'■Varmint men,'''' as they called them- 
selves — " The DeviVs Own,'''' as others named them. It 
was a melancholy sojourn for Desborough. The strict- 
ness of academical rule put down every attempt at a 
cock-pit, a badger-hunt, or a bull-bait. It was a pain- 
fully monotonous life ; and to enliven it he got up a rat- 
hunt. Appertaining to him was a little knowing dog, 
with a sharp, quick eye, and a short, curled-up tail, who 
was discovered to have an invaluable antipathy to rats, 
and a unparalleled facility in despatching them. What 
discovery could be more opportune? Rat-hunts wiled 
away many a lagging hour ; and the squeaks, and shrieks, 
and shouts, which on these occasions issued from Des- 
borough's rooms, were pronounced by the senior tutor 
''quite irregular;"" and by the master to be "by no 
means in keeping with the gravity of college discipline." 
To the joy of all the staid and sober members of the 
society, these sounds at length were hushed, for Des- 
borough quitted the University. 

"What a happy riddance!" said, on the morning of his 
departure, a junior fellow who had had the misfortune to 
domicile on Desborough's staircase. " His rooms had 
invariably such an unsavoury smell, that it was quite 
disagreeable to pass them!" 

'And would you believe it," cried another, who used 
to excruciate the ears of those above and below him by 
the most rasping inflictions on a tuneless fiddle; "would 
you believe it, after the noise and uproar with which his 
rooms were familiar— would you credit it, after the horrid 
din which, during all hours of day and night, might be 
heard there — that whenever I began one of those sweetly 
soothing airs of Bellini, his gyp used to come to me with 
his master's compliments, and he was sorry to disturb 


me, but really the noise in my rooms — fancy — the 
NOISE ! was so great, that he was unable to read while 
it lasted !" 

" He was so little accomplished — played the worst 
rubber of any man I ever knew," observed the dean, 
with great gravity. 

"He carved so badly!" said the bursar. "He has 
often deprived me of my appetite by the manner in 
which he helped me !" 

"And was so cruel !" added the president, who was 
cursed with a tabby mania. " Poor Fatima could never 
take her walk across the quadrangle without being worried 
by one or other of his vile terriers." 

" The deliverance is great," cried the musical man, 
" and heaven be praised for it !" 

"Amen !" said the other two ; "but surely — yes ! it is 
the dinner-bell !" 


In a fair and fertile valley, where the nightingales are 
to be heard earlier and later in the year than in any other 
part of England ; where the first bursting of the buds is 
seen in spring; where no rigour of the seasons can ever 
be felt ; where every thing seems formed for precluding 
the very thought of wickedness, lived a loved and vener- 
ated clergyman with his only daughter. 

He belonged to a most distinguished family, and had 
surrendered brilliant prospects to embrace the profession 
of his choice. And right nobly had he adorned it ! And 
she — the companion of his late and early hours, his con- 
fidante, guide, almoner, consoler — was a young, fair, and 
innocent being, whose heart was a stranger to duplicity, 
and her tongue to guile. 

His guide and consoler was she, in the truest sense 
of the term. He was blind. While comforting, in his 
dying moments, an old and valued parishioner, Mr. 
Somerset had caught the infection ; and the fever, settl- 
ing in his eyes, had deprived him of vision. 

" I will be your curate," said the affectionate girl, 
when the old man, under the pressure of this calamity, 
talked of retiring altogether from duty. " The prayers, 
and psalms, and lessons you have long known by heart ; 


and your addresses, as you call them, we all prefer to 
your written sermons. Pray, pray accept of me as your 
curate, and make trial of my services in guiding and 
prompting you, ere you surrender your beloved charge 
to. a stranger." 

" It would break my heart to do so," said the old man, 

The experiment was made, and succeeded ; it was a 
spectacle which stirred the heart to see that fair-haired, 
bright-eyed girl steadying her father's tottering steps, 
prompting him in the service when his memory failed, 
guiding him to and from the sanctuary, and watching 
over him with the truest and tenderest affection — an 
affection which no wealth could purchase, and no remu- 
neration repay, for it sprung from heartfelt and devoted 

Satiated with pleasure and shattered in constitution, a 
stranger came to seek health in this sheltered spot. It 
was Desborough. Neither the youth, nor the beauty, nor 
the innocence of Edith availed her against the snares and 
sophistry of this unprincipled man. She fell — but under 
circumstances of the most unparalleled duplicity. She 
fell— the victim of the most tremendous perfidy and the 
dupe of the most carefully vailed villany. She fell — and 
was deserted! " Importune me no more as to marriage," 
was the closing remark of the deceiver's last letter ; 
" your own conduct has rendered that impossible." That 
declaration was her death-blow. She read it, and never 
looked up again. The springs of life seemed frozen with- 
in her; and without any apparent disease she faded 
gradually away. 

" I am justly punished," was the remark of her heart- 
broken father, when the dreadful secret was disclosed to 
him. " My idol is withdrawn from me! Ministering at 
His altar, nought should have been dearer to me than 
His triumphs and His cause ! But lead me to her, I can 
yet bless her." 

The parting interview between that parent and child 
will never be forgotten by those who witnessed it. The 
aged minister wept and prayed — and prayed and wept — 
over his parting child, with an earnestness and agony that 
" bowed the hearts of all who heard him like the heart 
of one man." 


" Is there hope for me, father ?" said the dying girl. 
" Can I — can I be forgiven ? Will not — oh ! will not 
our separation be eternal V 

" Though sin abounded," was the almost inarticulate 
reply, " grace did much more abound. The blood of 
Jesus Christ cleanseth from all sin." 

" We shall not be long parted," was his remark when 
those who watched around the dying bed told him he 
had no longer a daughter. " The summons has arrived 
and the last tie which bound me to earth is broken." 

Acting upon this conviction, he commenced and com- 
pleted the arrangements for the disposition of his little 
property with an earnestness and alacrity they could well 
understand who had witnessed his blameless career. 

The evening previous to that appointed for the funeral 
of his daughter, he said to those who had the manage- 
ment of the sad ceremony, " Gfrant the last, the closing 
request of your pastor. Postpone the funeral a few 
hours. I ask no more. A short delay — and one service 
and one grave will suffice for both." 

His words were prophetic. The morrow's sun he 
never saw ; and, on the follovi^ing Sabbath, amid the 
tears of a bereaved people, father and daughter were 
calmly deposited in one common grave. 


In the interim how had the world sped with Gervaise 
Rolleston ? Bravely ! He had become a thriving and a 
prosperous gentleman. There are two modes, says an 
old writer, of obtaining distinction. " The eagle soars, 
the serpent climbs." The latter mode was the one 
adopted by Rolleston, He was an adroit flatterer ; pos- 
sessed the happy art of making those whom he addressed 
pleased with themselves ; had a thorough knowledge of 
tact ; and always said the right thing in the right place. 
All his acquaintance called him " a very rising young man." 
And for " a very rising young man," he held a most con- 
venient creed. For " to forget all benefits, and conceal 
the remembrance of all injuries, are maxims by which 
adventurers lose their honour, but make their fortunes." 
In a happy hour he contrived to secure the acquaintance 
of Lord Meriden. His lordship was an amiable, but 


moody valetudinarian, who had no resources in himself, 
and was entirely dependent on the good offices of others. 
Eolleston was the very man for him. He was a fair 
punster; told a good story ; sang a capital song; played 
well at chess and billiards, and, most unaccountably, was 
always beaten at both ; could read aloud by the hour 
together ; and never took offence. To all these accom- 
plishments, natural and acquired, he added one most 
valuable qualification, which was in constant exercise — 
the most profound respect for Lord Meriden. Ah ! how 
true it is that " we love those who admire us more than 
those whom we admire !" 

Rolleston's advice, presence, and conversation became 
to Lord Meriden indispensable. And, when ordered 
abroad by those who foresaw that he would die under 
their hands if he remained at home, the sick nobleman's 
first care was that Rolleston should accompany him. He 
did so ; and played his part so successfully, that, " in 
remembrance of his disinterested attentions," Lord Meri- 
ien bequeathed to him the whole of his personal pro- 
perty. His carriages, horses, plate, yacht, all were willed 
by the generous nobleman to his pliant favourite. In 
the vessel which had thus become his own, Rolleston 
embarked for England. It was a proud moment for his 
aspiring spirit. He was returning, an independent and 
opulent man, to those shores which he had quitted, fif- 
teen months before, a penniless adventurer. His family, 
apprized of his good fortune, hurried down to Ryde, to 
receive him on his arrival. They vied with each other 
in the length and ardour of their congratulations. By 
the way, what extraordinary and overpowering affection 
is invariably evinced by all the members of a family 
towards that branch of it which unexpectedly attains 
wealth or distinction ! The " Fairy Queen" was tele- 
graphed, was signalled, hove in sight, passed gallantly 
on, and all the RoUestons, great and small, pressed down 
to the pier to welcome this " dear, good, worthy, accom- 
plished, and excellent young man." 

At the very instant of nearing the pier, in the bustle 
and confusion of the moment, Rolleston was sent over- 
board. Some said that he was overbalanced by a sudden 
lurch of the vessel ; others, that he was struck by the 
jib-boom. One staid and respectable spectator positively 


affirmed that he had observed a sailor, to whose wife, it 
seemed, Rolleston had, some months before, offered insult, 
rush violently against him, with the evident intention 
of injuring him, and this account, strange as it appeared, 
gained considerable credence. The fact, however, was 
indisputable. He struggled bravely for a few moments 
with the eddy that sweeps around the pier, then struck 
out boldly for the shore, waived his hand in recognition 
of his agonized family, who were almost within speaking 
distance, and — sunk to rise no more. 

For many days his anguished mother lingered at Ryde, 
in the hope of rescuing the body from the deep ; and 
large was the reward promised to those who should suc- 
ceed in bringing her the perishing remains. So many 
days had elapsed in fruitless search, that hope was fading 
into despair, when, one morning, a lady in deep mourn- 
ing inquired for Mrs. Rolleston. On being admitted to 
her presence — 

" I am the bearer," said she, " of welcome intelligence : 
I have, this morning, discovered on the beach, at some 
distance, the body of your son, Glervaise Rolleston." 

" How know you that it is he ?" 

"I cannot be mistaken !" 

" Are his features, then, familiar to you ?" 

" Familiar ! I am the mother of Cyril Dormer !" 


It is painful to observe how soon the dead are forgotten. 
The tide of fashion, or business, or pleasure, rolls on — 
rapidly obliterates the memory of the departed — and 
sweeps away with it the attention of the mourner to the 
ruling folly of the hour. 

" There poesy and love come not, 
It is a world of stone : 
The grave is bought — is closed — forgot, 
And then life hurries on." ' 

Engrossed in the all-important duty of securing the 
property which had been bequeathed to their son, and 
which, as he had left no will, there was some probability 
of their losing, the Rollestons had completely forgotten 

1 L. E. L. 


him by whose subservience it had been acquired. At 
length it occurred to them that some monument was 
due; or, at all events, that a headstone should be raised 
over him v^ho slept beneath the yevi^-tree in Brading 
churchyard ; and directions were given accordingly. 
Their intentions had been anticipated. A headstone had 
been erected — when or by whom no one could or cared to 
divulge. But there it was. It bore the simple inscrip- 
tion of the name of the departed — the day of birth and 
the day of death ; with this remarkable addition, in 
large and striking letters : — 



Some years after the circumstances detailed in the last 
chapter, a gentleman, in military undress, was descried 
riding slowly into the village of Beechbury. The size 
and architecture of the village church had apparently 
arrested his attention, and he drew bridle suddenly, to 
make inquiries of a peasant, who was returning from 
his daily toil. 

"Ay ! it's a fine church, though I can't say I troubles 
it very much myself," was the reply. " There's a mort 
of fine munniments in it beside. AH Lord Somerset's 
folks be buried there ; and 'twas but four years last 
Martinmas that they brought here old Parson Somerset 
and his daughter all the way from a churchyard t'other 
«de Dartmoor, because, ye see, they belonged to 'em ; 
and these great folks choose to be all together. It's a 
grand vault they have ! But here's Moulder, the sex- 
ton, coming anent us, and he'll tell as much and more 
than ye may care to hear." 

The name of Somerset seemed to jar harshly on the 
stranger's ear; and, dismounting hastily, he demanded 
of the sexton " whether he could shew him the interior 
of the church at that hour?" 

" Certainly," was the reply; " turn to the right, and 
I will overtake you with the keys before you reach the 
west door." 

The church was one of considerable magnitude and 
surpassing beauty. It was built in the form of a cross, 


and had formerly been the chapel of a wealthy monastic 
order, suppressed at the period of the Reformation. Near 
the altar was a shrine, once the resort of pilgrims from 
every clime, from its inclosing a fragment of the true 
cross. You approached it by an aisle, which was literally 
a floor of tombstones, inlaid in brass with the forms of 
the departed. Mitres, and crosiers, and spears, and 
shields, and helmets were all mingled together — emblems 
of conquests, and honours, and dignities, which had long 
since passed away. The setting sun cast his mellow 
radiance through the richly-painted western window, and 
tipped with living lustre many of the monuments of the 
line of Somerset. Some of the figures were of the size 
of life, and finely sculptured. And as the restless and 
agitated stranger gazed on them,* they seemed to reply 
to his questioning glance, and slowly murmur, "All on 
earth is but for a period ; joy and grief, triumph and 
desolation, succeed each other like cloud and sunshine ! 
Care and sorrow, change and vicissitude, we have proved 
like thee. Fight the good fight of faith. Brave, as we, 
the combat ; speed the race ; stem the storm of life ; and 
in God's own good time thou, like us, shalt rest." 

"I wish," said the stranger, when he had traversed the 
church, "to descend into the Somerset vault. It's a 
sickly, foolish fancy of mine ; but I choose to gratify it. 
Which is the door?" 

"Nay, that's no part of our bargain," said the sexton, 
doggedly; " you go not there." 

"I am not accustomed to refusals when I state my 
nshes," said the soldier fiercely and haughtily. "Lead 
the way, old man !" 

" Not for the Indies ! It's as much as my place is 
vvorth. Our present rector is one of the most particular 
parsons that ever peered over a pulpit cushion. He 
talks about the sanctity of the dead in a way that makes 
one stare. Besides, it is the burial place of all his 

" The very reason for which I wish to see it." 

" Not with my will," said Moulder, firmly. " Besides, 
there's nothing to see — nothing but lead coffins, on my 

Here," cried the stranger ; and he placed a piece of 
gold on the sexton's trembling palm. 


" I dare not, sir ; indeed I dare not," said the latter, 
entreatingly, as if he felt the temptation was more than 
he could well resist. 

"Another," said his companion, and a second piece of 
the same potent metal glittered in the old man's grasp. 

" Well," cried Moulder, drawing a deep and heavy- 
sigh, ' if you inust you must! I would rather you wouldn't 
— I'm sure no good will come of it ; but if you insist 

upon it, sir — if you insist upon it" and slowly and 

reluctantly he unclosed the ponderous door which opened 
into the vault. 

The burial-place of the Somersets was large and im- 
posing. It was evidently of antique construction and 
very considerable extent. Escutcheons, shields, hatch- 
ments, and helmets were ranged around the walls, all 
referring to those who were calmly sleeping within its 
gloomy recesses, while coffins, pile upon pile, occupied 
the centre. One single window or spiracle of fifteen 
inches in diameter passed upwards, through the thick 
masonry, to the external air beyond, and one of those 
short, massive pillars, which we sometimes see in the 
crypts of very ancient churches, stood in the centre and 
supported the roof. 

V " Which — which is the coffin" — and the stranger's voice 
seemed hoarse with agitation — " of Edith Somerset ?" 

" Edith !" cried old Moulder, carelessly — and the indif- 
ference of his tone formed a strange contrast to the 
eagerness of the preceding speaker — " Edith ! ough ! ah ! 
the young girl that last came amongst us ! a very pretty 
lass, they say, she was ! Edith ! ah ! here she is — the 

second coffin on your right." 


" Well, sir, you are about satisfied, I take it," said the 
sexton, coaxingly, to his companion, after the latter had 
taken a long, minute, and silent survey of the scene 
around him. 

"No! no!" 

" Why, how long would you wish to remain here?" 

"At least an hour." 

" An hour ! I can't stay, Sir, really I can't, all that 
time! And to leave the church, and, what's worse, the 
vault open— it's a thing not to be thought of ! I cannot 
— -and, what's more, I will not." 


" Dotard ! then lock me in, I say ! Do what you will. 
But leave me." 

" Leave you! Lock you in ! And here ! Grod bless 
you, Sir, you can't he aware " 

"Leave me — leave me!" said the stranger, impetu- 
ously ; and he drew the door towards him as he spoke. 

"What! would you be locked up and left alone with 
the dead -?" 

" Go — go, I say, and release me in an hour." 

Li amazement at the stranger's mien, air of command, 
courage, and choice. Moulder departed. " The Jolly 
Beggars" lay in his way home, and the door stood so 
invitingly open, and the sounds of mirth and good- 
fellowship which thence issued were so attractive, that 
he could not resist the temptation of washing away the 
cares of the day in a cool tankard, were it only to pledge 
the stranger's health. 

This indulgence Moulder repeated so frequently as at 
length to lose all recollection of the stranger, of the 
vault, and of his appointment, and it was only late on 
the morning of the following day, when his wife asked 
him "j/' Ae had come honestly by what was in his pocJcet?" 
that, in an agony, he remembered his prisoner. 

Trembling in every limb, and apprehending he knew 
not what, he hurried to the church and unlocked the 

The spectacle which there awaited him haunted the 
old man to his dpng day. The remains of the stranger 
were before him, but so marred — -so mutilated — so dis- 
figured — that no feature could be recognized, even by the 
nearest relative. 

Rats in .nyriads had assailed him ; and, by his broken 
sword and the multitudes which lay dead around him, it 
was plain his resistance had been gallant and protracted. 
But it availed not. Little of him remained, and that 
little was in a state which it was painful for humanity 
to gaze upon. 

Among the many who pressed forward to view the 
appalling spectacle was an elderly female, much beloved 
in the village for her kindly, and gentle, and compassion- 
ate heart — her name was Dormer. To her the sexton 
handed a small memorandum book, which had, by some 
means, escaped destruction. 


Upon the papers which it contained the old lady looked 
long and anxiously, and, when she spoke, it was in a low 
and tremulous tone. 

" These," said she, " are the remains of Colonel Vincent 
Desborough. I have deep cause to remember him. May 
he meet with that mercy on High, which, on earth, he 
refused to others !" The old lady paused and wept, and 
the villagers did homage to her grief by observing a 
respectful silence. They all knew and loved her. " This 
spectacle," murmured she, as she wended her way home- 
wards, " opens up fountains of grief which I thought 
were long since dry ; but chiefly and mainly does it teach 
me, that the measure we mete out to others is measured 
unto us again." 



" For it is not the past alone that has its ghosts : each event to come 
has also its spectrum — its shade ; when the hour arrives, life enters it, the 
shadow becomes corporeal, and walks the world. Thus, in the land 
beyond the grave, are ever two impalpable and spectral hosts, the things 
to be, the things that have been." — Godolphin. 

At Paris, during the early part of the year 1827, and 
the autumn of 1828 and 1829, resided a lady, whose pre- 
tensions and performances caused no slight sensation 
among the novelty-seeking coteries of that gay capital. 
Madame de Strzelecki was a woman advanced in years, 
plain in appearance, and grave in address. She spoke in 
the tone and diction of one who had been accustomed to 
move in the higher grades of society ; but of her descent, 
connections, plans, and resources, no one seemed able to 
glean the slightest information. She professed to unveil 
the future ; and, though her fee was gold, and though 
she saw those only who waited upon her with a formal 
introduction from a previous client, the equipages that 
were found loitering near her spacious dwelling in Rue 
de la Paix chez la Barriere du Roule, contained half the 
beauty and haut ton of Paris. 

And yet the information she gave was partial. It re- 
lated to two epochs only in the life of those who con- 
sulted her — death and marriage. She would place before 
you the lively scene and gay appendages of the one ; 
and the languor, gloom, and restlessness of the other. 
On neither spectacle was it her custom to offer one single 
syllable of remark. • She left her visitant to draw his own 
moral from the scene. 

Among the strangers in Paris, at that period, were two 
Englishmen, of great, though opposite talent— both am- 


bitious men — each idolized by his respective party— each 
the sworn champion of a certain set of opinions — both 
high in the favour of the sovereign vidiom they served, 
and aspiring to the most enduring rewards which talent 
and energy could win. They heard from fifty gay voices 
the fame of Madame de Strzelecki ; and as a mere whim 
of the moment — an impromptu extravaganza — they re- 
solved to visit the mystic in disguise, and to test her 
pretensions. They were described in the note of intro- 
duction which they presented, as " two American gen- 
tlemen, whose stay in Paris must be, under any circum- 
stances, short ; whose errand there was some commercial 
speculation, the issue of which might recall them to 
Philadelphia at a few hours' notice. They entreated, 
therefore, the favour of an immediate audience." 

It was granted at once. She received them, as was 
her wont, in silence. But upon the first who entered 
her apartment (the younger, and by far the more intel- 
lectual looking of the two) she gazed long and earnestly. 

" You are married, and have two sons and a daughter ;" 
was the off-hand declaration with which she met his 
bow ; " the scene of your nuptials, therefore, you cannot 
well have forgotten ! That of your demise is the spec- 
tacle which I presume you wish to have brought before 

"You anticipate me. Madam," was the reply; "but 
such is, undoubtedly, the object of my present visit." 

" And you, sir," said she, turning to his companion, 
" are married, but childless. Do yoio wish to gaze upon 
the closing scene of your busy life? Perhaps," added 
she, with more of interest and feeling than she generally 
exhibited, " yi»u will abandon your intention ? Recon- 
sider it." 

" By no means ; the ordeal which is gaily courted by 
my companion, I would also brave." 

"Have you firmness and resolution?" demanded the 
lady ; " have you nerve to gaze upon a very harrowing 
spectacle ?" 

" Without it, oiight I to have come hither .^" 

" I am answered. Follow me." 

She led the way as she spoke, out of the apartment, 
and the Englishmen followed her. They crossed a small, 
low passage ; passed through a narrow portal ; a second 5 


a third ; aud then found themselves in a hall of very 
considerable extent. It was paved with black marble, 
and decorated at each end with four slender pillars of the 
same material. In the centre rose a very large jet-black 
basin, filled with dark water to a considerable depth. A 
cupola, or lantern, admitted a tempered light from above ; 
and the deep basin was so placed, that whatever day- 
light the dome admitted fell full upon it. But, despite 
of the noble proportions of the hall, and the lightness of 
the pillars, and the fairy tracery of the cupola^ there was 
an air of gloom over the whole apartment. It seemed a 
fitting scene to communicate tidings of approaching sor- 
row, separation, sickness, silence, death. 

"Look on this dark water," said their conductress; 
" it shall speak to you of the future. If death be at a 
distance, it will sink some feet in every second that you 
gaze upon it. If your parting hour approaches, it will 
rise rapidly ; and if the very last sands in life's hour-glass 
be running, will mount till it be checked only by the 
margin. If it be fated that death shall approach you in 
the guise of violfence, the water will instantly bubble up. 
If caused by accident, it will change colour once, twice, 
thrice, — fast as the hues of the rainbow melt into each 
other and vanish, even when you gaze on them. If death 
overtake you by gradual decay, and in the common course 
of nature, other than a gentle ripple over its surface, no 
change will the still water know or tell. You under- 
stand me ?" 

" I do." 


" I conceive so '' 

" Approach, then. Gaze steadfastly on that dark sur- 
face, and it shall mirror to thee, fully and faithfully, the 

The calmer, and graver, and sadder of the two advanced 
slowly to the margin with a look of mingled curiosity 
and incredulity which sat strangely on his heavy, massive, 
and somewhat passionless features. In an instant the 
water rose at least two feet ; changed colour rapidly, 
and evidently more than once ; and then became dark 
and motionless as before. 

" Ah! not far distant — and by accident !" 

The mystic made no reply ; but merely motioned him 


by a gesture to gaze on. He did so ; and as he looked 
he beheld a mimic representation of a scene of great con 
fusion. Countless multitudes were assembled — there 
was running to and fro— horsemen were riding in all 
directions — the spectators were conversing eagerly with 
each other — and deep dismay sat on many a countenance. 
This faded from the surface, and there was presented to- 
him a small room, in what appeared to be a road-side 
inn. Three or more individuals it contained, to whose 
persons he was a perfect stranger. But there was one 
present whose features he instantly recognized — one who 
was ever dear to him — his wife. Her countenance was 
calm, but there was stamped on it deep and indescribable 
distress. Propped up with pillows in the foreground 
was a figure wiiich he instantly admitted to be his own. 
But how painfully was he pictured ! The eye was 
wandering and restless. Every feature bore the impress 
of intense agony ; and the face was overspread with that 
cold, grey tint which so surely foretels impending disso- 
lution. He looked at it steadily for a few seconds. A 
sort of mist seemed to come over his vision. He with- 
drew his gaze for an instant from the fountain, and when 
he again resumed his observation, the painful scene had 
wholly disappeared ! 

His inquiring look of astonishment and emotion the 
mystic returned with apathy. The agitation manifested 
in his countenance was strangely contrasted by the fixed, 
rigid expression of hers. His appeared a painful struggle 
with conflicting feelings ; her countenance wore its usual 
air of cold and impassive indifference. 

" What! it's past a joke?" said the younger of the two, 
advancing gaily towards the fountain : "the answer of 
the oracle is not palatable, eh? Take your favourite 
poet's advice henceforth : 

Quid sit futurum eras, fuge quserere ! 

But now of me, and to me, what says the future?" 

The water rose a few inches and then became station- 
ary. On its surface next appeared a small chamber; 
limited in its dimensions — humble in its accommodations, 
antique and clumsy in its furniture, and altogether pre- 
tensionless in its comforts and appointments. Gardens 
seemed to stretch around it of considerable extent ; and 


on the mantel-piece he remarked a small bronze clock of 
singular shape and construction. 

His attention, at once, became intently and painfully 

"Charles, as I live!" he exclaimed, as his eye rested 
on the lineaments of a youth, who was holding the hand 
of a sick person, in the full vigour of life, but evidently 
racked with bodily agony, " The other iigure I conceive 
to be that — that " — continued he, speaking slowly and 
after a lengthened pause — " yes ! that of Charles's dying 
father! 'Tis a painful spectacle," added he, turning from 
the fountain, "and I know not what benefit is to be de- 
rived from a lengthened contemplation of it. Come : 
the day wears. We will leave this clever, disagreeable, 
and certainly most puzzling exhibition." 

He took his friend's arm as he spoke, and advanced to 
pay his parting devoirs to the mystic, and with them her 
fee. The first she returned coldly : the latter she per- 
emptorily rejected. 

" I am already remunerated ; amply remunerated !" 
was her unexpected and startling declaration. " Sufficient 
honour for me if I have administered to the amusement ; 
the passing amusement,'''' — the bitter emphasis placed on 
this last word conveyed a meaning which those whom 
she addressed seemed to feel and shrink from — " of two 
such distinguished state servants of his Britannic Majesty 
as Mr. Huskisson and Mr. Canning !" 

Again, with exquisite mockery, she curtsied still 
deeper and more deferentially than before, and, ere they 
could recover from their surprise, left them. 

"nidus passerum :" or the "sparrowe's" nest at 


" In this church, St. Laurence, are interred the mortal remains of the 
ancient family of the Sparrowes. They appear to have been long and 
honourably connected with the town of Ipswich : one of them having 
served the office of Bailiff thirteen times. The inscription on the vault is 
quaint enough — " Nidus Passerum." 'Tis a merry conceit on so gloomy 
a subject ! It seems to say — ' here the Sparrowes — the old birds and 
the young — securely nestle ! ' " 

Rambles through the Eastern Counties. 

It may be questioned whether there be a house in the 
kingdom, belonging to a private individual, which pos- 
sesses greater interest for the antiquarian than that 
inhabited by Mr. Sparrowe, in the Old Butter Market, 
Ipswich. In truth, its attractions are manifold. There 
are curious dates and inscriptions for the genealogical 
student ; valuable old paintings for the lovers of art ; for 
those who hold the faith of former days, vestiges of a 
Roman Catholic chapel adroitly hidden in the rude loft 
during troublous times ; and for the romantic, a legend 
linked with the reverses of Royalty. 

The exterior of this picturesque dwelling has been 
lescribed and limned over and over again. By no Suf- 
folk tourist or travelling artist have its claims to notice 
been overlooked. Engravings and etchings of it, of vari- 
ous merit, abound. But the interior is less known. And 
yet a long summer's morning could be agreeably con- 
sumed in an examination of the various relics of old time 
which it contains. 

But before we enter the mansion, let me notice one 
curious fact — that no chimneys are visible from the 
street ; that the four attic windows on the roof form so 
many gable-ends ; and that above the row of windows 

" SPARROWe's" nest at IPSWICH. 69 

on the second story is a considerable projection extending 
the whole length of the front, which forms, in fact, a 
promenade on the outside nearly round the house. 

The entrance-hall is noble : and the ceiling in admira- 
ble preservation. 

The eating-room is closely panelled in dark oak, glori- 
ously carved, and hung with original pictures by Gains- 
borough, Sir Peter Lely, and Sir Godfrey Kneller. So 
profusely is this apartment ornamented, that even the 
beams of the room are as elaborately carved as the most 
prominent part of the wainscot. The figures 1567, con- 
spicuous over the mantel-piece, form the date of the 
erection of the building. 

Ascending to the first floor, you reach a room extend- 
ing over the whole of the front part of the house — a 
noble apartment — forty-eight feet in length by twenty- 
two in width. Its walls are lined with pictures, all more 
or less interesting: but none so striking as the portrait 
of James the First. It is a revolting picture ; and yet it 
arrests and rivets your attention. You feel it to be a 
likeness. It is a faithful transcript — you are persuaded 
— of the features of the party whom it represents. And 
what a transcript ! Avarice, cruelty, cowardice, mean- 
ness, treachery, sensuality, all are depicted there. The 
picture is a study, were it only for the various expression 
stamped on the canvas. One thinks of the monarch's 
victims — the gallant Raleigh and the guiltless Arabella 
Stuart ; of the frightful disclosures threatened by Sir 
Thomas Overbury, and hushed only by his sudden and 
violent death in the Tower; of the infamous court 
favourite (Carr), and his paramour the Countess of Essex; 
of their admitted share in the Overbury murder, and of 
the mysterious and unexplained reason why the penalty 
of death was not inflicted on them ; of the clue to the 
king's lenity hinted at by more than one historian — that 
Somerset was in possession of facts relative to his royal 
master, which, if revealed, would cover his name with 
infamy — a supposition which, with that speaking canvas 
before us, it is difficult to believe untrue. Another 
glance at this — excuse the paradox — attractive yet repug- 
nant picture. A monster, not a man, stands before you. 
And he — a king ! 

Near this picture is one which tradition has handed 


down as the portrait of a Romish persecutor. One would 
hardly have guessed as much from the delicate, feminine 
features, and calm, soft eye. 

" A persecutor ! " 

What character more hateful in the sight of " The 
Supreme," or more injurious to the interests of real 
religion ! 

And yet, though there be the furrows of age and care 
in that way-worn countenance — though the light of 
gladness seems quenched in the fading eye, and the sad- 
dened expression unquestionably indicates one who has 
endured much in a weary and lengthened pilgrimage — 
we look in vain for the haughty scowl, the harsh and 
cruel eye, and the angry flush of one who is " handed 
down us as a persecutor and injurious." 

Between this portrait and that of James hangs a 
Magdalene, by, it is said, Caracci : — a voluptuous picture 
— conveying anything but the idea of one who loathed 
the remembrance of the past, and was preparing by 
prayer and penitence for the solemn future. The ceiling 
of this magnificent room is richly carved, and profusely 
ornamented with fruit and flowers ; but its beauty is 
marred by thick and repeated coats of whitewash. How 
I longed to set to work and scrape it ofi"! Beyond ques- 
tion the ceiling is of oak— dark, glorious, enduring oak ! 
Woe betide the Vandal who first cased it with white- 
wash ! He is past praying for ! 

In one corner of this saloon a keen eye will detect a 
small door. This opens upon a staircase leading to the 
roof of the house : from which issues a door-way to the 
leads over the wide eaves of the building. These leads 
are sufficiently wide for two parties to walk abreast, and 
every part of the upper portion of the building can be 
reached by them. 

Early in the present century a curious discovery was 
made in this upper story of the house — namely, that of 
a concealed loft, without doubt, forming the roof of a 
chapel the body of which existed in a room immediately 
beneath. " The existence of this apartment was dis* 
covered by the merest accident, the connection between 
the loft and the sitting room being cut off by a built-up 
wall. Time and damp, however, displacing a portion of 
the plaster, the light of day found its way through the 

" SPARROWe's" nest at IPSWICH. 71 

opening, and the deserted sanctuary was discovered. The 
arched timbers of a slightly ornamented roof exist within 
it, and at the time of its being opened, the floor was 
strewed with wooden angels, and such figures as usually 
serve to decorate a Catholic oratory. It is supposed that 
the chapel existed in a perfect state at the date of the 
Eeformation; but after that period the open assumption 
of the proscribed faith becoming dangerous, the body of 
this place of worship was converted into a common sitting- 
room, and the roof concealed by a beamed ceiling." 

This discovery lends strength to the tradition, current 
in the Sparrowe family, that in this excellent old house 
Charles II. found a hiding-place after the fatal field of 
Worcester. " Where," has often been a perplexing point 
to the various Sparrowes who did battle in defence of the 
grateful legend that their dwelling had sheltered fugitiAe 

This chapel-chamber seems to clear up many a diffi- 
culty. Here, unquestionably, the monarch would be 
" closely tyled." Those must have been prying eyes 
which could detect his " whereabouts." Be this as it 
may, in the absence of all direct documentary evidence, 
affirmative or negative, on this point, it may be matter 
of interesting inquiry whether this traditionary refuge of 
the king does not explain the hint thrown out by more 
than one historical writer, that Charles had intended to 
have embarked at Harwich ; that he had adherents to his 
cause there ; but they found the port too closely watched 
to permit of his escape. Let it be remembered that there 
is an interval in the prince's wanderings, of which no 
very minute account is given. Was Harwich — or its 
neighbourhood — visited during that interval? Was there, in 
point of time, space enough for so long a journey? Dis- 
appointed at Bristol, finding there no bark by which he 
could seek a foreign home, we find Charles, on the 16th 
of September, at Castle Cary, in Somersetshire, and on 
the 17th, at Trent — Colonel Wyndham's house. Here 
many days were lost in vain endeavours to procure a 
vessel at Charmouth or Lyme. How anxious Charles 
was to escape, and how unwearied were the efforts of his 
devoted adherents to procure him the means of flight, 
history over and over again abundantly attests. On the 
6th of October we find him at Mrs. Hyde's, at Hele, near 


Amesbury. Was Suffolk visited during this interval? 
Was it at this period that an escape from Harvs^ich v^^as 
deemed feasible? And if so, did the wanderer find a 
temporary home at the mansion of the Sparrowes — a 
family as distinguished for its undeviating loyalty as their 
descendant is for professional integrity — and was the 
chapel-chamber the king's resting-place? 

Be this fact or be it conjecture, there was, unquestion- 
ably, a secret, stringent, and enduring connection between 
the Sparrowe family and the reigning Stuart dynasty — a 
connection impossible to explain otherwise than upon 
grounds of some marked and definite obligation conferred 
by the subject and accepted by the monarch. 

Traces of this connection one stumbles on at every 
step. Portraits of Charles II. tire in possession of the 
Sparrowe family — presents, be it remembered, from the 
king himself. Portraits, too, they hold, of various other 
members of that branch of the Stuart dynasty, and by 
no ignoble hand. The arms of Charles are emblazoned 
prominently on the exterior of the old mansion ; and of 
Mrs. Lane, who took so fearless and enviable a part in 
the preservation of her monarch, the Sparrowes hold a 
miniature sent them by the king himself. Was this to re- 
mind them of the similar succour they themselves had rendered 
him ? 

In the wainscoted dining-room, to which reference has 
been already made, there hangs a highly-finished and life- 
like portrait, in exquisite preservation, of John Sparrowe, 
who repeatedly served the office of a bailiff of Ipswich. 
It is d glorious specimen of colouring, by Gainsborough. 

Near him, by Sir Peter Lely — and exhibiting all the 
beauties and defects of that great master — is a likeness 
of Mr. John Sparrowe, father of the gentleman so admir- 
ably painted by Gainsborough. Then we have the stern 
features of Sir John Sparrowe, Knight of the Green 
Cloth in the reign of James II., handed down to us by 
the brush of Sir Godfrey Kneller. 

There are two Vandykes. One, a likeness of Hen- 
rietta Maria, the ill-starred queen of the unfortunate 
Charles I. : the other is a portrait of Charles II. ; and 
in colouring, execution, and expression, a masterpiece. 
Good judges have held that Vandyke never painted a 
finer picture. It represents, and vividly, a worn-out 

" SPARROWe's" nest at IPSWICH. 73 

debauchee — one whose manhood was steeped in licenti- 
ousness, and whom a life of pleasure, vulgarly so called, 
had early and thoroughly destroyed. There is nothing 
kingly, or dignified, or refined, or self-reliant, about it. 
Grossness is stamped on every lineament. All is of the 
earth, earthy. The animal predominates over the man. 
It is not the sovereign — the ruler of a people, the arbiter 
of the destinies of a kingdom, the supreme fount of jus- 
tice you are gazing on ; but a slave of lust, one whose 
motto is, " Let us eat and drink, for to-morrow we 
die;" one whom unbridled appetite rules; who knows 
no master but his own passions ; a callous, reckless pro- 
fligate. Those who have read Miss Strickland's "Lives 
of the Queens of England," and bear in memory her 
elaborate sketch of Catherine of Braganza, in which a 
graphic account is given of the last illness of Charles IL, 
and of his lawless life up to the moment in which disease 
laid him upon his death-bed, will be tempted to say, that 
her spirited narrative and this painful portrait illustrate 
each other. 

One cannot quit the picture of Queen Henrietta Maria 
without trying to solve a riddle which the old house 

From the noble saloon on the first floor the spectator 
passes through a low, narrow door, near King James's 
portrait, and finds himself in a bed-room, in which the 
embellishments of the ceiling are totaly changed. Fruit, 
flowers, and family badges, the decorations of the other 
apartments, disappear, and are here profusely superseded 
by the fieur-de-lys. This alteration has a meaning. Can 
it be thus explained ? Has, then, the faint, lingering 
legend any foundation that the unhappy queen, in one 
of her many journeys to and from the continent, was 
here a passing but honoured guest ? If so, was this her 
sleeping apartment ? And was the jieur-de-lys — so identi- 
fied with her native land — an emblem intended at once 
to compliment the princess and to commemorate the 
transient visit of so distinguished a personage ? 

But to pass from conjecture to certainty. 

From the year 1573 this time-honoured dwelling has 

been inhabited by the Sparrowe family only. It is 

litera.iy ^'Nidus Passerum.^' I may add, too, and I do it 

with honest pride, that the p-esent ovmer is a mason — an 



honoured member of the fraternity. His own high sense 
of honour, and unblemished worth go far to redeem from 
obloquy a profession against which caustic tongues 
clamour loudly : a profession thus recently characterized 
by high authority : — 

" The power of which, for good or evil, as far as the 
worldly interests of the mass of mankind are concerned, 
can scarcely be too strongly stated — a profession, owning, 
I am happy to be able to say, so many who would do 
honour to any calling, and who are well aware that 
sincerity and integrity are the surest guides to prosperity 
and distinction, and who are true and just from higher 
motives and less worldly considerations."^ 

> Yice-Chancellor Sir Knight Bruce, on a motion to remove the 
of a solicitor from the Rolls Court. 



" Reduce Freemasonry to the limits of any particular religious insti- 
tution, and you, de facto, annihilate its usefulness as a common bond of 
humanity. Declare it to be, in its maxims, rites, and ceremonies, ex- 
clusive in its character, and you, a priori, debase it to that anti-social 
position wherein the most rancorous passions of the human heart have 
raged, to enkindle wrath, envy, hatred, and discord among mankind." 

Eev. H. Raper Slade, D.D. 

" Nothing surprises me more," was the remark of a 
young and intelligent American who had come on a visit 
to his father-land, " than the influence of the Church in 
the old country. It is marvellous. We know nothing 
of it in the States." 

" So I should imagine," was my reply. 

" Nothing at all," continued he, musingly ; " but on 
this side the Atlantic, 'Hear the Church' are words of 
import. Two of the ablest of your prelates — Bishop 
Phillpotts and Thirlwall — I had the rare opportunity of 
hearing in the House of Lords on the same evening. The 
former reminds me a good deal, in his personal bearing, 
courage, fluency, determination, and decision, of a model 
churchman in our own country — Bishop Griswold." 

"He differs from him, though, in one respect, and that 
an important one," remarked a bystander. 

"Name it." 

" In his treatment of Freemasons : Bishop Griswold 
cherished them : Bishop Phillpotts discountenances them." 

" He but follows in that respect his right reverend 
orethren," contended the first speaker. 

" That can hardly be, seeing that the present Bishop 
of Lincoln is a Mason; and further, that the Primate, 
Dr. Howley, not only belonged to the craft, but was 


at one period of his life master of a working lodge at 

" As to Dr. Grriswold's favourable feelings towards 
Freemasons," said the young American, " those are easily- 
explained when you are told that the bishop was himself 
a Mason." 

"That does surprise me!" remarked a very formal 
gentleman, in a most amusing tone of unequivocal amaze- 
ment — " a bishop — a Mason ! ! Oh dear ! oh dear ! These 
are the latter days. What sort of person was this digni- 
tary — in practice, I mean, as well as intellect? The latter, 
I presume, was feeble." 

"Why!" returned the American, bluntly, "we form 
our opinion of an individual most safely when we judge 
him by his acts. Of the party v,iider dissection I will give 
a trait or two, then say whether or no his opinions are 
entitled to respect. He was bishop of the Eastern dio- 
cese and senior bishop of the Episcopal Church in the 
United States. As a matter of course, many were the 
odious representations to which he was obliged to listen ; 
for in England, let me tell you that you have no idea of 
the minute, and jealous, and unceasing surveillance to 
which, in America, church clergy are hourly subjected. 
One morning — this was about a year and a half before 
his death — he was surprised in his study by a clergyman, 
who poured into his unwilling ear a series of remarks, 
inuendos, fears, doubts, and surmises respecting the con- 
duct and character of a neighbouring church minister. 
The bishop, apparently, did not heed him ; but wrote 
on, assiduously and in silence. When his visitor had 
completed his statement. Dr. Oriswold looked up from 
fiis paper, and said, gravely, ' I have committed to writ- 
ing every syllable you have said to me : I will now read 
it over to you deliberately, paragraph by paragraph; sign 
the memorandum, and I will instantly act upon it.' — 
His visitor looked aghast. — ' O dear, no ! by no means !' 
cried he, pushing the long catalogue of misdemeanors 
away from him — ' I contemplate nothing of the kind. I 
merely called. Right Reverend Sir, to put you in posses- 
sion of certain rumours, remarks, and suspicions current, 
respecting my unhappy neighbour; it was a visit of in- 
formation : nothing more.' — 'Ah! very well ! but I will 
teach you, Sir,' said the bishop, * that to a party filling 


my office there can be no such thing as what you phrase 
a ' visit of information.^ Mine are functions far too solemn 
to be trifled with* There can be no gossiping visits to 
me. Sign this paper, taken down from your own lips — 
your own voluntary, unasked-for, and spontaneous state- 
ment, be it remembered — sign it, as a needful preliminary 
to its being laid before the next Clerical Convention, or 
- — I proceed against you.' The visitor grew paler and 
paler — hemmed, coughed, explained, and hawed — still 
flinched from substantiating his statement. The result 
was speedy. The bishop drove the eaves-dropper from 
his diocese !" 

" Would that other official authorities were equally 
proof against the poison of eaves-droppers !" sighed the 
formal gentleman. 

" An act of self-denial scarcely to be expected ; its 
results would be so horribly inconvenient," suggested the 
American, slyly : " see you not how marvellously it 
would thin the ranks of great men's toadies ?" 

" Adjuncts which," remarked I, ''your bishop, clearly, 
could dispense with." 

" He did — and on principle," observed my Transat- 
lantic companion : " in public, and in private, he abhorred 
the genus. He never allowed it to fasten on him ; and to 
this may be ascribed the weight which attached to his 
opinions and the respect and reverence which waited on 
him to his last hour. During the persecution sustained 
by Masonry, some years since, in America, a wealthy 
layman accosted the bishop, and after sundry insinua- 
tions to the discredit of a clergyman, whom for years he 
had been endeavouring to injure, wound up with the 
remark, ' And now, bishop, you will be shocked— much 
shocked — at hearing what I am quite prepared to prove : 
this man is — I have no doubt of it — A Mason!' — 'A 
Mason, is he? I am one myself,' returned Dr. Griswold. 
— The objector was flabberghasted. — ' I wish,' continued 
the bishop, ' all my clergy were Masons ; I wish they 
all belonged to the craft ; provided they would act up to 
its obligations, and fulfil its engagements.' — ' And in 
what may these consist?' said the tale-bearer, hurriedly; 
bent on bettering his position, or, at all events, regaining 
his composure. — 'I will shevv you practically,' returned 
the bishop, after a short pause. ' You have sought me, 
Sir, with a long and laboured statement, and have given 


me a variety of details relative to Mr. — ; you have 

said much that has a tendency to injure him, and that to 
his ecclesiastical superior ; his failings — and who is v^ith- 
out them ? — have not escaped you ; his merits — and he 
has many — have been barely adverted to. Such a con- 
versation as we have had cannot but lead to some im- 
mediate and grave result. Now, in awarding to it the 
importance which it may deserve, I will believe that you 
have been actuated by no other than perfectly pure and 
disinterested feelings ; I will forget that between you 
and your minister there has existed for years strong per- 
sonal dislike ; I will forget that he once remonstrated 
with you, in private, on the course of life you were then 
leading ; and I will further believe, that you have yourself, 
altogether, lost all remembrance of that incident! I will 
believe, too, that, in seeking me this morning, you had 
no wish, whatever, to crash him ; that your sole aim was 
to benefit the church ; that your distinct object was, to 
preclude from doing further mischief one whom you 
considered to be a rash and an ill-advised minister ; I 
will believe that no personal animosity, no impulse of 
private pique, no revengeful or malicious feeling have, 
in the most remote degree, moved you ; but that on 
public grounds, and from religious considerations, and 
those alone, you have sought me. This conclusion you 
owe to Masonry. That, Sir, teaches me charity ; don't 
mistake me ; I don't allude to mere alms-giving, but to 
charity in its purest, largest, most comprehensive, and 
most effective form — the charity which bids us invariably 
init THE BEST construction uyon the acts and motives of 
others. This I learn from Masonry.' Would you believe 
'it," concluded the American, with the most extraordinary 
and laughter-moving twist of his droll mouth — " that the 
rich planter never cared to converse with Bishop G-ris- 
wold afterwards!" 

Ha ! ha ! ha ! burst from the party, tickled as much by 
ihe anecdote as by the contortions of the speaker. 

"But, was he benevolent as a Mason?" asked the 
formal gentleman, in a querulous tone, from his distant 

" This I can say, that to my own knowledge one of 
the fraternity applied to him, in a moment of great 
distress. The bishop coolly demanded a clear, correct, 
and candid expae of his position and his perplexities. 


How, bear in mind, the bishop was not opulent. Wo, 
have no wealthy prelates amongst us. We have no dean.i 
who die worth fifty thousand pounds. We have no 
churchmen with large revenues at their disposal, and few 
claims upon their exertions and leisure. These are found 
in the ' ould country.' Dr. Griswold's means were limited. 
The petitioner obeyed, and then named a sum. ' This,^ 
said he, 'will relieve me.' 'No! no!' cried the bishop, 
' that won't do. Don't tell me what will relieve you, 
but what will release you.' A further and much 
hea-'ner sum was then stated. This the bishop raised, 
and gave him. But by far the largest donor on the list 
was himself." 

Our formal friend in the corner, with his lugubrious 
tones, again struck in : — 

" A bishop — a Mason ! I cannot understand it. I 
presume, however, that Dr. Griswold was not a man of 
mind, or a scholar, or a student, or a man devoted to 
literary research?" 

" He was our greatest mathematician after Dr. Bow- 
ditch," replied the American firmly ; " a man of indispu- 
table attainments and strong natural mental endowments. 
His domicile was Boston, where he had to cope with no 
less an antagonist than Dr. Channing ; and this eloquent 
and accomplished advocate of opposite (Unitarian) views, 
always spoke of the churchman as an able and learned 
man. This, remember, was the testimony of an oppo- 

" And his faults?" 

"It is hardly fair to dwell on them. They were lost 
amid the brilliancy of his many virtues. Those, who love 
to expatiate on a great man's failings, would say that he 
was somewhat too self-reliant, unbending in his judg- 
ments, and stern in his reproofs. But, towards the 
decline of life, every harsh feeling mellowed under the 
controlling influence of Christian charity and Christian 
love. He was verging on seventy-eight when he died. 
In the last week of his life, he said to a young friend, who 
watched by his sick couch:— 'We are, all of us, apt to 
think too harshly of our fellow-men, to reprove too will- 
ingly, and to condemn too exultingly. But listen to me. 
Forbearance is the great lesson of life.'' A sentiment to 
which his age and experience lent strength ; and worthy, 
let me a4d, of a bishop and — a Masoni" 



" Ambition thinks no face so beautiful as that which looks from under 
a Crown." — Sir Philip Sydney. 

There is truth, as well as tenderness, in the observ^a- 
tion of Selden, that " it is only when the career of life is 
closed, that the character is completely established, and 
can be fairly estimated." It occurred to me forcibly, 
when I read the demise of the Hon. Mrs. Lisle. 

Mrs. Lisle was no common-place character. Hers was 
no tranquil and ordinary career. She was one of the 
Ladies of Honour, at a most critical period of her 
history, to that unfortunate princess, the late Queen of 
England. I am not now about to rake up the ashes of 
the dead, for the purpose of kindling new flames among 
the living. I purpose not to speak with bitterness of 
those who are now gathered together in the peace and 
shelter of the grave. I call her unfortunate, because I 
think few will deny her claim to that epithet; — still 
fewer assert than she was not, during the greater part of 
her life, and particularly the closing scenes of it, an 
object of the deepest pity. 

It will, perhaps, be remembered that, in the memora- 
ble investigation of 1805-6, the evidence of Mrs. Lisle 
was peremptorily required, and minutely criticized. Hers 
was the only deposition which militated materially 
against the princess. " It is the only part of the case (thus 
ran her letter to her royal father-in-law) which I conceive 
to be in the least against me, or that rests upon a witness at all 
worthy of your Majesty^ credit.''^ 

It was, as some have reason to know, the sole deposi- 
tion which the princess felt or cared for. It was the soli- 
tary testimony which neither the ingenuity of Mr. Perdval 


could ridicule, nor the arguments of Lord Eldon invali- 
date. It contained one particular passage, the eifects of 
which they both " feared " would " in a certain quarter 
be fatal." 

" Her Royal Highness behaved to him (Capt. Manby) 
only as any woman would who likes flirting. She 
(Mrs. Lisle) would not have thought any married woman 
would behaved lyroperlij, who behaved as her Royal High- 
ness did to Captain Manby. She can't say whether the 
princess was attached to Captain Manby, only that it 


They were right. It was " this sweeping sentence 
which went to prove so much," that the late King was 
heard more than once to declare, he " had tried, and tried 
in vain, to banish from his remembrance!" It was to 
this statement, short, but full of meaning, another illus- 
trious personage is known again and again to have refer- 
red : — " I abandon, to the infamy she merits. Lady Dou- 
glas ; but — but. Sire, the evidence of Mrs. Lisle!" 

The secret history of that evidence is known to very 
few, and it is not uninteresting. It shews what trifling 
events often colour with sadness a whole train of import- 
ant consequences ; what inconceivable bitterness may 
be infused into an important and delicate proceeding, 
by an unguarded sentence, incautiously uttered — how 

" Many a word at random spoken 
May wound or soothe a heart that's broken." 

When Mrs. Lisle received the summons from the Chan- 
cellor (Erskine), acquainting her that her evidence was 
required before the commission then sitting, she had just 
perused the melancholy tidings of her daughter's death. 
If ever mother and child were deeply and devotedly 
attached ;-— if ever mother doated upon the external 
loveliness and mental endowments of an idolized daugh- 
ter ; — if ever daughter reverenced a mother's lofty and 
unimpeachable character, and remembered, with grateful 
and delightful accuracy, a mother's ardent and unceasing 
love, — these were the sentiments reciprocally entertained 
by Mrs. Lisle and Mrs. Arbuthnot.^ 

There were, moreover, attendant circumstances which, 

» The first wife of the Right Hon. Charles Arbuthnot 


in Mrs. Lisle's mind, deepened the gloom occasioned by 
Mrs. Arbuthnot's death. She had accompanied her hus- 
band in his embassy to Constantinople, — delighted at the 
opportunity of enriching her mind with associations 
acquired from personal observation of a country full of 
interest, and but little known. The last letters that 
flowed from her polished pen, and those who knew her 
best will be the first to do justice to the brilliancy of her 
style, the fidelity and variety of her descriptive powers, 
breathed the language of youth and hope, spoke of past 
pleasures, and anticipated future gratification : — the next 
account stated that she was no more. She died at Pera ; 
died when the sad event was utterly unexpected, — died 
w^hen the physician to the embassy had, for some unex- 
plained reason, quitted his post, and native talent was 
perforce resorted to ; — died, except as far as Mr. Arbuth- 
not was concerned, in the midst of strangers, and alone. 

Mrs. Lisle's agony beggared description. She wept in 
unutterable anguish :— " I cannot appear before the 
council ! Half frantic and distracted as I am, with my 
heart swollen almost to bursting by this bitter bereave- 
ment, and my thoughts all tending towards my daughter's 
grave, — is it possible I can enter upon a subject which 

requires such caution, such ? For God's sake, write 

and entreat them to grant me delay." 

The answer returned was brief and harsh. No delay 
could be afforded. It was scarcely probable it should. 
The peculiar circumstances of the case — the excitement 
prevalent throughout the country — the feelings of the 
parties interested — the anxiety of the reigning monarch 
— all precluded the possibility of protracted delay. But 

Lord 's answer stated nothing of this. It was 

couched briefly, peremptorily, urgently. Most austerely 
was it written, most acutely was it felt. 

"This I have not deserved," was Mrs. Lisle's observa- 
tion to her tried and valued friend, Mrs. Forster. "Rare 
union of matchless qualities — empty head, unfeeling 
heart! I go — -unfitted for the ordeal: I go — and the 
blame be on those who dragged me to their tribunal, if 
my evidence be tinged by my sorrows." 

She went ; and her evidence did take a tone from the 
grief that overwhelmed her. This her Royal Highness's 
advisers at once detected, and Mrs. Lisle never denied. 


*' Thank God ! this most painful portion of my life is 
over," was Mrs. Lisle's hurried exclamation, as she quitted 
the Council Chamber; " and now," said she, as she enter- 
ed her carriage, " with courts I have done for ever ! This 
hour I resign my office." 

" To the princess ?" 

" No. From the prince I received my appointment ; 
to the prince will I resign it." 

In a letter which bore the impress of wounded feelings, 
and contained touches of the truest pathos, — which de- 
tailed the painful struggle in her own mind, — and while 
it paid the deference due to her prince, kept steadily in 
view what was due to herself, she entreated permission 
to lay at his Royal Highness's feet the appointment 
which he had formerly conferred upon her in his consort's 
household. A copy of this afiecting communication is 
yet in existence. He, to whom it was addressed, was far 
too generous not to ov;^n its justice — had much too high 
a sense of honour not to feel its truth. 

" I am but too sensible of the difficulties of Mrs. Lisle's 
situation. They are certainly here very strongly stated. 
Yet the letter is precisely what a high-spirited and high- 
principled woman like Mrs. Lisle might be supposed to 
have written ; and I entertain for her undiminished 

It is very pleasing to think that the individuals who, 
for many years, were so closely connected, and at last 
were separated by discussions which neither had foreseen, 
ind both lamented, thought of each other with kindly 
feelings and Christian forbearance. 

One of the Queen's first inquiries on reaching England 
wae, "Is Mrs. Lisle living, and well? Where does she 
now reside?" When told that she was living in retire- 
ment — that state which she loved and adorned — possessed 
an ample independence — uninterrupted health — 

"And that which should accompany old age, 
As honour, love, obedience, troops of friends," — 

the Queen listened with evident pleasure. 

" I rejoice at it ! Mrs. Lisle's evidence, at a former 

period, occasioned me much ; but it is past. She 

was a woman who abhorred falsehood and scorned dissi- 
mulation ; and I retain for her now the same regard and 
respect that I ever felt," 


" Do not, Sir, inveigh against the Queen — pray do not, 
at least, in my presence," was Mrs. Lisle's mild but firm 
rebuke to a young relative, who had taken the worst 
possible view of, jjrima facie, the worst possible case. 
" There are passages in her life, and traits in her charac- 
ter, which I must always regard with admiration. There 
are instances of kindness conferred personally on myself 
which I can never forget. No ! nothing shall ever make 
me think or speak harshly of Caroline of Brunswick!" 

Connected, however, with this unhappy historical 
personage there is a rumour which has found credence 
with parties, from their position and general intelligence, 
not easily misled. It is this. When the Queen found 
herself in extremity, and was assured by her medical 
men that her recovery was an utter impossibility, she 
desired Dr. Lushington might be sent for; and with him 
had an earnest, lengthened, private, and confidential 
interview. Disclosures were then made and explanations 
given for which the grave doctor was unprepared; but 
which he solemnly bound himself never to divulge. The 
late Lord Hood was heard to say that he had some 
grounds for suspecting they, in part, referred to the real 
parentage of William Austin. Be their nature what it 
might, the veil of secrecy and silence has never been 
lifted from the avowals then made. So that there are 
secrets even among courtiers as impenetrable as those 
among the Masons ! 



" Sickness and disease are, in many minds, the sources of melancholy ; 
but that which is painful to the body may be profitable to the soul. 
Sickness, the mother of modesty, puts us in mind of our mortality, and 
■while we drive on heedlessly, in the full career of worldly pomp and 
jollity, kindly pulls us by the ear, and brings us to a proper sense of our 
duty." — Burton's Anatomy of Melancholy. 

It is stated, in a merry treatise upon Hypochondriasis, 
by one who seems to bid defiance to " the blues," that 
the following anecdote may be depended on relative to 
Carlini — -the drollest buffoon that ever appeared on the 
Italian stage at Paris. A French physician having been 
consulted by a person subject to the most gloomy fits of 
melancholy, advised his patient to mix in scenes of gaiety 
and dissipation, and particularly to frequent the Itahan 
theatre ; " and if Carlini does not dispel your gloomy 
complaint," says he, " your case must be desperate in- 
deed !" — " Alas ! Sir," returned the patient, sadly, and 
as he spoke he turned away from the leech with an air 
of indescribable disappointment — " I myself am Carlini, 
and while I divert all Paris with mirth, and make them 
almost die with laughter, I myself am perishing with 
melancholy and chagrin !" 

I mused upon the moral of this anecdote when I met, 
some years ago, at the table of a celebrated Cheltenham 
physician, the popular mime, Mr. Liston. 

" Don't fail us at six, precisely," was the frank invite 
of my hospitable host : " Liston and one or two other 
professionals dine with me : we shall have music in the 
evening : I rather hope les Demoiselles de Lihu will be 
with us : at all events, I think I can promise you an hour 
or two's amusement." 

86 LisTON : 

A few minutes after the appointed hour I was in the 
Crescent. A larger party than I expected was assembled ; 
and, in a corner, palpably shrinking from observation, and 
shunning, as well as he was able, all communion with 
his kind, sat a sallow, grave, unhappy-looking man, 
whom I recognized, at a glance, to be Liston. 

Observing his distrait and saddened look, our host 
went up to him, and tried to rouse him with some jocu- 
lar remark. The mime replied languidly and feebly: and 
if I was struck with the melancholy of his countenance 
when silent, much more did its gloom surprise me when 
he spoke. Dinner was announced. By some accident I 
became his vis-d-vis. So circumstanced, I watched him. 
No topic had power to arrest his attention. No arti- 
fice could draw him into conversation. He ate little ; 
spoke less ; sighed heavily and frequently; and a stranger 
eyeing him for the first time, would have said, " There 
sits a thoroughly careworn, oppressed, and saddened man. 
A young and very pretty girl made repeated attempts 
to engage him in conversation, and, by the sunshine of her 
smiles, to banish his dejection. Her reward was a mono- 
syllable. The look of vexation and chagrin with which, 
on a fifth failure, she regarded him, was diverting enough. 
Dessert was at length put upon the table ; and the 
ladies soon afterwards withdrew. The fair ones were 
perplexed. Chagrin was predominant. •' Never more 
disappointed in my life!" whispered one. — "This Mr. 
Liston !" murmured another; " why, he looks like a man 
who has just returned from a funeral !" — " Having buried 
the dearest friend he had in the world!" slyly added a 
third. The actor was at a discount, undeniably, with 
Eve's daughters. The hostess — "Ah! what grace and 
loveliness are now shrouded in the grave !" — laughed 
heartily as she close the procession. Was it that she 
enjoyed the perplexity of her guests? — The ladies with- 
drawn — politics, local topics, and Cheltenham gossip 
became matters of discussion ; and among the latter the 
recent death, under peculiar circumstances, of Mr. and 
Mrs. Fotheringaye. The former filled the post of Master 
of the Ceremonies. 

Mrs. Fotheringaye was a little, pliable, worldly, fluent 
person, with " an instinctive attachment " — to use her 
own phrase — " to people of title ;" and an enviable faci- 


lity in " turning rich folks to account." Stupidity never 
bored her, hauteur never abashed her. She held on her 
course, and looked to results. Her powers of endurance 
were first-rate. Night after night was she seen at the 
card-table — the very last to leave it — without ever 
betraying the slightest symptom of weariness, ruffled 
temper, or fatigue. Her game was loo, and she was 
understood to be a speculative but signally successful 
player. The husband was a pleasant, gentlemanly, well- 
bred man, who always said the right thing in the right 
place, and could relate a piquant anecdote, and flatter a 
fading dowager, with very considerable eflect. His quali- 
fications for his office were undeniable. 

Time rolled on. The lady was missing one evening 
from her accustomed haunt. The loo-table was formed, 
but without Mrs. Fotheringaye. Inquiries were made. 
The answer given was, in substance, that the absentee 
had caught a slight, a very slight cold, was nursing her- 
self with ptisannes, felt chilly, and was confined to her 
sofa, but would be visible on the morrow. The morrow 
came, and brought with it the astounding intelligence that 
Mrs. Fotheringaye was worse, was in danger, was given 
over, was dying. The disease proved uncontrollable ! 
A few hours — and she was a corpse ! For some reason 
which I cannot now recal, an early day was fixed for the 
interment. When it arrived, the husband was found to 
be seriously unwell ; so much so, that it was deemed ne- 
cessary to postpone the wife's funeral, in order to secure 
the sick man from the risk of being disturbed by it. 
Vain precaution. His malady increased in virulence 
every hour. Another and more distant day was named. 
When it came, Mr. Fotheringaye was dying, and the 
result was, that one funeral procession and one ceremony 
sufficed for both. 

The various features of the story were discussed in 
detail. None seemed to like the subject, yet none cared 
to change it. 

" I was in Cambray street when the procession moved," 
chirruped a thin, reedy voice from the lower end of the 
table, " and saw the two hearses come up in succession, 
with poor Fotheringaye in one, and his wife in the other. 
It was a frightful spectacle. On my honour, I felt un- 

88 LisTON : 

" You might well do so !" said, with a reproachful air, 
a very stern-looking gentleman ; " it was a sad close to a 
life absorbed in gaiety and trifles." 

" Don't attend to what he says," whispered a voice on 
my left ; " he's one of Mr. Jervis's people !" 

" I've never slept soundly since I learnt the particu- 
lars," exclaimed a pale, sickly young man, who sat near 
our host ; " it's a horrid story — shall we dismiss it ?" 

To my surprise, Liston, who had listened with evident 
gusto to the narrative, now asked, in a low, quiet tone, a 
variety of questions, and shewed evident anxiety to be in 
possession of every particular. 

" Pray say no more about it," said our host j " it is far 
too gloomy an exit to be converted into an after-dinner 

Liston looked up, and said emphatically : *' Is it not 
rather an enviable release from the hirden of life .?" 

It was the only complete and connected sentence he 
uttered the whole evening. 

Some years after the Cheltenham party above referred 
to, three gentlemen w^ere seated on one of the benches 
which are placed at intervals upon the Denn, at Teign- 
mouth — tempting resting-places for the infirm, the aged, 
and the indolent. It was long past sunset. The heat 
of the day— even for July — had been oppressive, and the 
breeze from the sea was grateful and bracing. In the 
adjoining cathedral town, the assize-week and the race- 
week had followed each other at a short interval : gaiety 
was the order of the day ; London stars had, in succes- 
sion, glittered at the theatre, and Exeter had been a 
scene of unwonted bustle and animation. These and 
other topics had been discussed, ad libitum, by the lazy 
trio ; and they scarce heeded, in the twilight, that a 
fourth individual had joined their party, and was seated 
at the extreme end of the bench on which they were 

" Would that I had been in Exeter this evening," sigh- 
ed, rather than said, the youngest of the three. "I 
should like to have heard Miss Stephens as Rosetta." 

''What!" said another, "prefer the heat, and the 
crowd, and the bustle of a close, stifling theatre, to the 
freshness, and the beauty, and the calm of a scene like 
this! Out upon such taste." 


" I like a theatre!" said the young man. " I like the 
illusion, the excitement of the hour." 

" And the foolery and nonsense, the absurdity and the 
ribaldry," added the other. " Come ; be candid. You 
are one of Liston's men. Him you never miss at any 

" Last evening was the closing night of his engage- 
ment — his benefit, and I left Exeter at mid-day." 

" To-night you lament it?" 

" To be candid, I do ; ah ! it must be a joyous life 
that of a first-rate actor : there are no triumphs, I am per- 
suaded, like those of an established favourite. I allude, 
of course, to the career of no subordinate, but to a chief, 
a leader." 

" And yet," cried the stranger, abruptly joining in our 
conversation, " I have seen Mrs. Jordan sobbing behind 
the scenes, as if her heart would break; and this, after 
she had been delighting a brilliant audience with her life- 
like gaiety and merriment ; and I know she was a wretch- 
ed woman, for I have seen her weep bitterly — weep as 
' one that would not be comforted' by the half-hour 

We knew not for the moment what to make of the 
speaker, of his information, of the deference due to his 
experience, of his opportunities for observation, and thus 
were silent. After a pause, the stage-smitten one re- 

" There are peculiarities about Mrs. Jordan's case which 
will apply to no other ; and I repeat the theatre is a 
school of morals." 

"A place," took up the stranger, "where lessons may 
be learnt in one hour, which if put in practice would 
colour with infamy a whole life. I might further say — 
but enough." 

He took a prodigious pinch of snuff, bowed, and 
walked off. 

"A cool hand !" cried one. 

"A very odd fellow that !" said another. 

"A character!" exclaimed a third. 

We were not far wrong. It was Liston. 

"Years again intervened ; and I had lost sight of this 
cautious and prudent man altogether ; when calling on a 
friend, she said, on my rising to take leave — 

90 LisTON : 

" I think I have a treat in store for you : you are fond 
of the remarlcahles. Remain where you are ten minutes 
longer, and you will see Liston. He will be here this 

" On no theatrical errand, I presume?" 

" Oh dear, no !" said she, laughing ; "he comes here 
to inquire the character of a servant. You remember 
Jacob ? Now Jacob was very dirty ; and kept neither 
his carriage nor his horse as he should have done : he 
was in truth a sloven ; but Jacob has a most staid, grave, 
thoughtful, imposing air, and this has caught Mr. Liston. 
I rather think the wealthy actor intends to take him. 
If so, Jacob has fallen upon his feet. For Mr. Liston 
is a kind master." 

" But how can you, possibly, recommend him ?" 

"Pardon me ; I do nothing of the kind: I merely state 
the tmth respecting him. He is entitled to an honest, 
candid statement : and that I give. But, hush ! Mr. 
Liston is here." A door opened, and the retired come- 
dian appeared. 

I was struck with the ravages — many, deep, and dis- 
tinct — left by the wear and tear of professional life ; ill- 
health and hypochondriasis should perhaps be added. 
His complexion was that of a man who had spent twenty 
years in Bengal. And as I scanned him it struck me he 
had the gait, feebleness, bent form, and lassitude of 
seventy. Further ; he looked as he advanced towards us 
— I will not say dispirited and ill at ease, for those terms 
do not convey the expression of his features — he seemed 
distressed and woe-begone to the last degree. 

My companion quietly murmured, as he came up : — - 
" Did you ever meet with a more desponding visage? He 
looks as if he had not a friend in the world or a penny 
in his pocket." 

With a most wretched air he took possession of the 
first chair that presented itself, and commenced his in- 
quiries. Jacob's careless and untidy habits seemed venial. 
The point he was most desirous to ascertain was this — 
whether Jacob was a party likely to conform, cheerfully 
and willingly, to the religious observances of a somewhat 
strict household. The manner in which he expressed 
himself on this head was remarkable. There was no- 
thing of Pharisaical ostentation ; — nothing of the cant or 


shibboleth of a party ; — but much of good sense : much 
of deep and earnest religious feeling. I listened to him 
carefully; and methought, at the close of the conver- 
sation, " In my hearing, at least, the remark must never 
in future pass without determined protest — that ' it is 
impossible an actor can be other than an irreligious cha- 
racter !' " 

Some six or eight months after his interview I was 
conversing with l London clergyman about the peculiar 
sphere of duty presented to active piety in the metro- 
polis. He spoke of a fellow-labourer who had a large 
congregation, and in it many excellent and exemplary 
characters. "But," said he, "there is one of his hearers 
of whom more than all the rest I envy him the adherence. 
He is a rigidly religious man : stern towards himself: but 
most lenient in his judgment of others. He is of all men 
I ever met the most thoroughly conscientious. I only 
wish his religion was of a more cheerful cast." 

" May I ask his name ?" 

" I don't know that I ought to give it to you. I think 
I should withhold it. It will call up associations of an 
absurd description." 

"Nay: you have now irritated my curiosity; pray 
gratify it?" 

He hesitated for a moment ; and then said — " Liston." 



" The melanclioly, which comes over me with the recollection of past 
afflictions and disappointments, is not hurtful, but only tends to soften 
and tranquillize my mind, to detach me from the restlessness of human 
pursuits. The stronger I feel this detachment, the more I find myself 
drawn heavenward to the contemplation of spiritual objects. I love to 
keep old friendships alive and warm within me, because 1 expect a 
renewal of them in the World of Spirits. I am a wandering and un- 
connected thing on the earth. I have made no new friendships that can 
compensate me for the loss of the old — and the more I know mankind the 
more does it become necessary for me to supply their loss by little 
images, recollections, and circumstances of past pleasures." 

Charles Lamb (Elia) . 

It is the deep-seated conviction of our ablest masonic 
writers, that Masonry is best understood and best exem- 
plified where it constitutes a secret but electric bond of 
brotherhood ; jperpeUially existent ; prepared for every emer- 
gency ; and prompt at all seasons and under all circum- 
stances to display itself in action. To constitute this 
bond there must be sympathy, courage, child-like confi- 
dence, instant co-operation, and unity. 

Is this rare combination of qualities ever instanced in 
every-day life ? 

I think it is. 

The little court at was crowded. A trial was on 

before Mr. Justice Grazelee which excited considerable 
attention. It involved a question of identity ; and a 
question of character ; and presented more than one 
debatable point for the gaping crowd to cudgel their 
brains about. The facts were these. Mrs. Harper, a lady 
whose purse was heavy and whose passion for dress was 
great, went into the shop of Messrs. Steele and Whitten- 
bury, silk mercers, to inspect some foreign shawls. The 


lady's taste was somewhat difficult to hit ; and a bale of 
shawls was turned over, and an entire morning spent be- 
fore a shawl could be found of which the colour, size, 
and texture were such as, thoroughly, to satisfy Mrs. 
Harper's fastidious eye. At last, to Mr. Whittenbury's 
infinite relief, tliis doubtful result was attained ; and the 
lady proceeded to pay for her purchase. She looked on 
her right hand and on her left ; turned first crimson and 
then pale ; gazed around her with a most indignant air ; 
and finally said firmly to the wondering Mr. Whitten- 

" I will thank you to find my purse ; I laid it upon 
these gloves three minutes ago; you and you only have 
served at this counter ; a bank-note for fifty pounds — I 
have the number — lay in a corner of that purse ; I beg it 
may be at once forthcoming." 

Mr. Whittenburj^ looked aghast at this imputation on 
his honesty, and blurted forth some incoherent disclaimer, 
when one of his assistants drawled out — 

"Who was that party that left the shop so suddenly 
without making any purchase ? Can he be the thief?" 

"He's not out of sight! I'll follow him!" screamed, 
rather than said, the senior partner, Mr. Steele ; and, 
suiting the action to the word, started after the supposed 
delinquent with an alacrity and energy wholly irrecon- 
cilable with his portly form and wheezy breathing. 

Pending the absence of his principal, Mr. Whittenbury 
indulged in a strain of the most elaborate imagery, all 
levelled at the resolute Mrs. Harper. 

" For the first time in my life have I had the finger of 
scorn pointed at me ! I, who have so far played my part 
on the motley stage of existence without my fair name 
ever being sullied with the breath of slander. All my 
actions have been weighed in the scales of Justice. 
Equally would I loathe injuring my neighbour's fame, or 
abstracting a penny from his purse." 

"I wish I saw mine again!" remarked the matter-of- 
fact Mrs. Harper. 

Mr. Whittenbury rather winced at this last remark ; 
then pitched his voice a note higher, and proceeded. 

" Hitherto my career has been peaceful ; but now the 
winds of adversity assail me from a quarter — from a 
quarter — from a quarter that- " 


The speaker paused from sheer perplexity how to 
finish his sentence. 

" Well ! never mind the quarter !" cried the anti- 
sentimental Mrs. Harper — " attend to me. Somebody- 
has raised the wind at my expense. That's but too 
evident. I want to see my fifty-pound note again, and I 
shall not leave this shop till I do." 

"Madam!" rejoined the distracted draper, "Aere it 
cannot be. The accumulated experience of two-and- 
twenty years assures me of the unimpeachable integrity 
of those around me. We, Madam, in this establishment, 
rise superior to temptation ; we are proof against it : for 
note -" 

"Ah! where is it?" interrupted the undaunted claim- 
ant; — "I don't want words, but paper; once more, my 

^^ Was it ever lost ?^^ demanded the desperate Whitten- 
bury, with a very successful sneer. 

"So!" cried the lady ; "you're come to that, eh? A 
subterfuge! a juggle! Hah! I understand you ! You 
insinuate that I had neither purse nor money when I 
entered your shop. No note, eh? I'll make you change 
yours, depend upon it. You shall sing to another tune; 
and that shortly. Neither purse nor money had I, eh ? 
That's your meaning, is it?" 

" No, no ! Madam, we don't say that, yet !" interposed 
Mr. Steele, who now made his appearance, panting from 
exertion and purple in face, from the unexpected de- 
mands made upon the activity of his lungs, and their utter 
inability to answer them. " We have a question — ugh ! 
ugh ! ugh ! or two — oh dear, this cough ! to put — ugh ! 
ugh ! to this party," and he pointed to a young, feeble, 
and timid-looking young man who followed him into the 
shop " with unwilling step and slow," and upon whom 
Mr. Steele seemed to exercise something rather more 
stringent than mere " moral compulsion." A policeman 
appeared in the doorway. A crowd surrounded the shop, 
and eagerly gazed in at the windows. " Now, Sir !" cried 
Mr. Steele, with emphasis, being in better wind — " we 
don't wish to be other than courteous ; will you submit 
to be searched, without further struggle or ceremony?" 

The latter word sounded oddly enough : with the 
policeman standing in the background, and two dark 


objects, which had a very awkward resemblance to 
handcuffs, lying on the counter; — and so the prisoner 
seemed to think, for he smiled painfully as he answered : — 

"Come, come — no gaffing; say what I am brought 
here for, and by whose order ? Out with it ! What have 
I dune amiss?" 

" Much to this lady. Her purse is missing. That purse 
contained a fifty-pound note, and we believe you could 
tell us something about it." 

" I cannot," returned the youth, in a calm, firm tone, 
and with an air of ingenuousness and honesty which pre- 
possessed a few of the by-standers in his favour; "I 
know nothing of the lady ; never saw her purse ; never 
saw her note ; know nothing at all about the matter." 

" You stood by her side at least ten minutes," observed 
Mr. Whittenbury — speaking for once in his life without 
the aid of trope or figure — " you made no purchase ; you 
bolted from the shop suddenly, and started off at a run ; 
and within two minutes afterwards the purse was miss- 
ing. This is highly suspicious, and I insist on your being 

" I left the shop," said the young man — still speaking 
in the same calm deliberate tone — "because I could not 
get served. I waited not ten, but full twenty minutes 
before any one of your young men would ask what I 
wanted. I don't blame them. I don't blame you. Of 
course a rich customer must be waited on before a poor 
one. I ran because I knew I should be late for my 
mother's funeral, hurry as I would. The parson required 
us to be at the church-gate by three." 

" And what might a person of your stamp need from 
our establishment ?" said Mr. Steele, with an air of un- 
feeling pomposity, which contrasted strongly with the 
mild and deprecating tone in which the prisoner replied — 

" A small piece of crape to put round my hat : it was 
all, and indeed, the only mourning I could afford!" 

"Gammon!" cried the policeman. "I take it upon 
myself to say that's gammon." 

"Oh! you know him, do you?" inquired Mr. Steele, 

" Perfectly ! Parfectly well ; and have for years," re- 
turned A, No. 175. 

"Now are you not surprised, Madam?" cried Mr. 


Steele, delightedly, turning from the policeman to the 
lady—" are you not surprised at the wickedness of human 

"No! nothing surprises me!" returned the fair one, 
bluntly: "nothing upon this earth ever can or will sur- 
prise me more, after the way in which my purse has 
vanished, while I was — as I may truly say — actually 
sitting by and looking at it." 

" It shall be found, Madam ; it shall be found," per- 
sisted Whittenbury. 

" Set about it, then," said the lady sharply : " act, and 
don't chatter. Oh !" cried she, yawning fearfully, "how 
hungry, weary, and worried I am!" 

" I trust. Madam, that you do not believe that I am the 
guilty party — that I stole, or that I hold one farthing of 
your money?" said the accused, with an earnest and 
deferential air. 

"Know nothing about you!" returned the lady 
promptly ; " nothing whatever ; not even your name." 

" Ralph Wortham," returned he, frankly ; " a name 
that — let this policeman say what he may — has never 
yet had ' thief added to it, and, I trust in God, never 

" Search him," cried Mr. Steele, furiously advancing 
towards Wortham as he spoke, with a menacing air, and 
beckoning on Mr. Whittenbury to his assistance. 

" Have a care. Sir, how you handle me," cried Wortham, 
firmly; "I will not be turned inside out by you: the 
policeman is the proper party " 

" Pooh ! I stand on no ceremony !" ejaculated the rash 
Mr. Steele, most unadvisedly collaring the pliant form 
beside him. 

" Nor I! " returned the assailed. And he then tipped 
Mr. Steele a rattler that could hardly have been expected 
from one so slight in form, and, apparently, so deficient 
in strength. Again did the senior partner aim at grasp- 
ing his victim. Wortham closed with him ; and, after a 
gentle shaking, sent Mr. Steele spinning across the floor 
into the arms of the amazed Whittenbury. 

" Oh mercy!" cried Mrs. Harper, "here will be blood- 
shed !" and then recollecting a word which ladies can 
invariably command in the midst of the most desperate 
encounters, screamed with all her might=— "Murder !" 


At this word of ill omen the policeman, the junior 
partner, and " Mr. Whittenbury's young men," all rushed 
upon the unfortunate Wortham, whom they speedily 
dragged, with united effort, to an inner room, where they 
summarily searched him. There was a strange clamour 
for a few seconds. Half a dozen parties seemed voci- 
ferating all together; and at a very high note in the 
gamut. On a sudden the uproar lulled. The policeman 
appeared in the doorway, and, addressing the weary Mrs. 
Harper, inquired whether she could " tell him the number 
of the note which she had lost." 

" Unquestionably I can. I remember it perfectly : 
No. 3,746." 

"Its amount?" 

" Fifty pounds." 

" Was it a provincial note or a Bank of England 

" A Bank of England note : I had no other." 

"Had it any mark or signature that you can recollect 
on the back?" 

" Yes : ' Philip Furze ' was written in one corner ; and 
I put my own initials, M. H., in another. I can swear 
to the note among a thousand." 

"This is it, Madam, I believe!" said the policeman, 
holding up, with a most complacent air, a soiled and 
crumpled piece of paper ; " we have lighted on it, to- 
gether with a purse, in the coat-pocket of that dutiful 
young vagabond." 

"Mine! both mine!" cried the lady, delightedly. 
"Grive me them. I claim them, and am too happy to 
recover them." 

" Madam," said Mr. Whittenbury — his partner, Steele, 
being far too stiff and sore to indulge in oratory—" we 
are in fetters ; we have no free-will ; we are bond-slaves ; 
we cannot hand over to you either note or purse, be- 
cause we dare not. We must prosecute !" 

"Fetters! Free-will! Bond-slaves! Fiddle-faddle!" 
responded the lady : " the note is mine, and the purse is 
mine ; and both I must and will have." 

"Alas! alas!" murmured the soft-voiced mercer — 
"your commands, on any other subject, we should have 
been but too proud to obey. The law of the land is now 
our master : we must proceed to the nearest magistrate ; 


acquaint him with the details of this deplorable occur- 
rence ; take his instructions, and abide by them. Police- 
man!" — here he waved his hand with an air that would 
have drawn a round from the gallery of any one of the 
minors — " Policeman, you know your duty : perform it !" 

" Hah!" cried the lady, starting to her feet and look- 
ing, beyond all question, remarkably red and wroth—" do 
you presume to lay down the law to me ! Have you the 
assurance to maintain that it can be either legal or just 
to detain my note and my purse, when I have already 
identified the one, and can swear to the other ?" 

" The law, Madam, is omnipotent. To its require- 
ments we must all submit. Pray acquiesce in what is 
"unavoidable without further remonstrance." 

The lady paused, then slowly took up her handker- 
chief and card-case, and prepared to depart. Ere she 
did so she turned to the shrinking Mr. Steele, and said 
distinctly — 

" You have had many a profitable visit from me at this 
counter. No small sum has from time to time passed 
from my hands into yours ; but if I ever again enter your 
shop, may I be strangled with the first shawl you shew 

" Now ! heaven, in its mercy, avert such a calamity 
from such a desirable ready-money customer !" promptly 
ejaculated the much perplexed Whittenbury. 

Such were the circumstances — pardon the long digres- 
sion, patient reader ! — on which the trial then proceeding 
in the little court at was founded. The general im- 
pression was against the prisoner. The fact of the money 
being found upon him, and the determined resistance 
which it was understood he had offered to being search- 
ed, appeared conclusive of his guilt. ' He, undauntedly, 
maintained his innocence. Much as' appearances told 
against him, he declared that he had never taken Mrs. 
Harper's money ; or dreamt of taking it ; that he had 
never seen either her purse or fifty-pound note until the 
policeman drev/ them forth, to his (Wortham's) distress 
and surprise, from the side-pocket in his jacket. He 
stood in the dock, haggard, emaciated, and apparently 
friendless. Want of means had disabled him from re- 
taining a counsel. A preconcerted and well-sustained 
line of defence was, therefore, out of the question. Nor, 


if counsel's aid had been his from the first, did it appear 
clear how the accused could have successfully rebutted 
the strong presumptive evidence against him. 

The clerk of the arraigns then read the indictment. 
Had it referred to the stealing of a tomtit, and the pen- 
alty been the fine of a farthing, payable some fifty years 
hence, greater unconcern could not well have been mani- 
fested. With a hideous nasal twang he wound up with 
the formal inquiry — 

" How say you, prisoner, ai'e you guilty of the offence 
charged against you in this indictment '?" 

" Not guilty !" said a firm, strong voice. 

" You say you are ' not guilty ;' " and then some horrid 
mumbling, and a repetition of much nasal intonation 
ensued, of which the only intelligible accents were the 
closing ones " good deliverance." 

The counsel for the prosecution now took up his brief; 
and in very temperate language opened, with extreme 
fairness and moderation, the case against Wortham. At 
the close of his statement, the judge inquired "who 
was counsel for the prisoner." 

The answer was then given, " the prisoner was unde- 

" Why?" asked his lordship, in a low tone. 

" Want of means," said Wortham boldly : " I had 
but five shillings in the world; and those were taken 
from me." 

Few as these words were, and uttered with no cringing 
and servile air, but with the spirit and freedom of one 
who was conscious of his innocence, and hopeful to 
establish it, they arrested the attention of that just man 
to whom they were addressed. He raised his eyes from 
his notes and gazed steadily and fixedly at the prisoner. 
Apparently the impression left by this scrutiny was satis- 
factory. His lordship turned towards the barristers' 
table, and said, with feeling : — 

" This is a serious case for the prisoner. He ought not 
to be undefended. Perhaps some gentleman at the bar 
will undertake to watch the case on the prisoner's behalf?" 

There was a movement among the juniors ; but — such 
are the bands of professional etiquette — no individual ad- 
vocate put himself prominently forward or responded, 
promptly, to his lordship's appeal. 


" Mr. Laconstone," continued his lordship, " you will 
perhaps kindly give the prisoner the benefit of your com- 
petent knowledge of criminal law ?" 

The young pleader, so flatteringly addressed, instantly 
bowed his acquiescence in his lordship's request ; made a 
snatch at his bag, gathered up his papers, ran across the 
table, and in a few seconds placed himself immediately 
below the felon's dock where he could communicate 
without difficulty with his client. 

Now Mr. Laconstone, to Wortham's cost, laboured 
under the most decided impression that he was a speaker. 
" The gods," he felt convinced, " had made him elo- 
quent." He was not quite clear whether he did not sur- 
pass Lord Brougham in vigorous diction and apt and ready 
sarcasm. He approached Lord Lyndhurst very closely 
— of that he was quite sure — in the order and clearness 
of his statements : and the irresistible force of his argu- 
ment. A little more practice was requisite, and he should 
beat Canning upon his own ground. He had no fears 
whatever on the subject. He would beat him not onl}'- 
in the wit, and point, and finish of his oral efforts, but in 
their excellent flow and rhythm. In a word, Mr. Lacon- 
stone had the impression that he was a promising and 
very remarkable and rising young man. His forte^ how- 
ever, was oratory. He was an advocate. Some wag, — 
as a joke, — assured him that he much resembled in 
manner, voice, and fluency the most accomplished advo- 
cate of modern times, Scarlett. He took the remark as 
serious ; and subsequently spoke of Baron Abinger as his 
model. " At some public dinner he sat next a grey-headed 
functionary who told him he had known intimately the 
celebrated pleader when junior at the bar, and could say 
— having heard the statement from his own lips — that in 
criminal cases when engaged for the defence, he " in- 
variably regarded and treated the accused party — be his 
asseverations of innocence ever so earnest and repeated 
— as really criminal. He found this' idea serviceable. 
So perilous an impression roused his energies, and kept 
his attention perpetually on the qui vim.''' Mr. Laconstone 
accepted this tradition as genuine, and relied upon it. 
It struck him as being remarkably fine. It was valuable. 
He should reduce it to practice. It was a legacy. It 
embodied a principle. It might be worth many import- 


ant verdicts. All ! What might it not eventually insure 
him ? The ermine and a peerage ! What it did iuime- 
diately insure him was this — the conviction on somewhat 
doubtful evidence of three unhappy men for whom he 
was concerned ! A straightforward jury was unable to 
understand his various quirks and quibbles. He treated 
his own client as guilty. The jury thought he surely 
ought to know best ; and they could not possibly err in 
agreeing with hhn ! They framed their verdict accord- 
ingly. Still Mr. Laconstone thought his principle sound, 
and abided by it. 

Upon this conviction he persisted in acting ; and 
the case of the unfortunate Wortham came in most op- 
portunely as a further exposition of the "Abinger" 
principle. Remonstrance was vain. The poor fellow in 
the dock, in an earnest whisper to his counsel, solemnly 
avowed his innocence. Mr. Laconstone listened ; gave a 
knowing shake of his head, equivalent to— " Of course 
you're innocent : never knew a prisoner otherwise : up 
to all that : and shall take my own course." So that 
while the accused, agonized at his position, and conscious 
that he was not the thief, begged and implored that 
" every witness might be well questioned," and the 
whole matter " opened up from beginning to end," his 
advocate thought "the less the affair was stirred the 
better. The case was bad; he should reserve himself" 
for his speech ! 

The first witness called was Mrs. Harper. She sailed 
majestically into court, accompanied by an elderly friend 
of most forbidding aspect. Both ladies, by the sheriff's 
order, had seats on the bench. Never had the owner of 
the stolen note felt greater self-complacency. She was 
very handsomely dressed. She had a part to play. She 
had a crowded audience for spectators. She sat in high 
places. She was within three of the judge. She was a 
person of importance. All eyes would be fixed on her. 
She was the leading witness in the case. Her testimony 
was most material. It would be reported in the county 
paper. Very possibly counsel would comment on it. 
And the honey-drop was — she should recover her pro- 
perty ! The day was all sunshine. She was on the very 
eve of becoming celebrated. She was satisfied with her-^ 
self and all the world ! 


"Grace Harper" was called. And Grace Harper 
rose ; and shewed a handsome face under a most becom- 
ing bonnet ; curtsied gracefully to the judge ; and told 
her story. 

She was, in counsel's language, a capital evidence. 
Her statement was clear ; calmly and resolutely given. 
It hung well together. There was no inconsistency : no 
contradictory point about it. She was neither fluttered 
nor abashed in dealing with the various questions put to 
her ; spoke distinctly ; and was accurate as to dates. 
The judge inquired if the prisoner's counsel had any 
questions to put to this lady. Mr. Laconstone declined 
to cross-examine. The prisoner, hurriedly and in a low 
voice, made a remark to him. Mr. Laconstone was still 
passive. His thoughts were busily employed upon his 
coming speech. Wortham looked wretchedly distressed. 
Some point not quite clear seemed to strike the judge. 
He mused a moment, and then asked the lady : — 

" When did you see your purse again after the prisoner 
left the shop in the hurried way you have described?" 

" Not until I saw it in the policeman's custody." 

" You mean to swear that the purse was lying before 
you on your handkerchief up to the time the prisoner 
quitted the shop?" 

"I do." 

" And you never saw it afterwards : even for a 
moment ? " 

Mrs. Harper paused. 

"I have no recollection of seeing it. I think I did 
not. To the best of my knowledge and belief I did 

The judge put this reply upon his notes : and the 
prosecuting counsel called the next witness. 

Mr. Whittenbury rose in the box. His evidence, ten- 
dered in his usual figurative style, referred to the restless 
and uneasy deportment of the prisoner while waiting at 
the counter. He declared he had never watched the 
movements of a more mercurial individual. The airiness 
of his deportment reminded him of vacillations ^" 

The judge frowned. 

" What are you, Sir ?" said he. 

" A mercer, my Lord." 

"Then express yourself in intelligible and ordinary 


language, and not in such absurd and high-flown 

Mr. Whittenbury was nettled beyond concealment; 
sulked ; affected deafness, and then said pettishly : — 

" Perhaps my evidence can be dispensed with alto- 

The judge eyed him sternly for some moments, and 
then said with emphasis : — 

"If you misconduct yourself in this court, I shall 
commit you." 

Mr. Whittenbury was cowed, and then, bursting with 
chagrin, condescended to speak plainly. His cross- 
examination w^as brief, and so managed by Mr. Lacon- 
stone as to strengthen the case against the prisoner. 

Isham Dadd, a shop-assistant, was next called on. He 
deposed to seeing the purse on the counter before Mrs. 
Harper ; to missing it immediately after Wortham's exit; 
to the abrupt manner in which the prisoner quitted the 
shop ; and to the fact of his making no purchase. 

There was something sinister in the mode in which 
this witness gave his evidence. He hesitated repeatedly ; 
looked pale and ill at ease ; and studiously avoided meet- 
ing the prisoner's eye. His voice, too, was disagreeable. 
Some would have called it hypocritical. It was wiry and 
high-pitched. He spoke in the falsetto key. The ex- 
pression of his eye was subtle and his attitude crouching. 
Altogether, a more sinister-looking personage has rarely 
appeared as witness in a court of justice. 

Him also Mr. Laconstone declined to subject to cross- 

He had made a rapid and joyous descent from the 
witness-box, when the judge desired him to be recalled. 

" How long have you been in the employment of 
Steele and Whittenbury?" 

"Four years." 

" During that period, has any occurence of a similar 
nature taken place upon the premises ?" 

Dadd's pale complexion assumed a more ashy hue : 
apart from this he gave no indication that he had heard 
the question. 

" You understand his lordship ?" said the junior counsel 
for the prosecution, feeling somewhat puzzled by the 
silence of the witness. 


Dadd's lips moved, but not a word was audible. 

"I asked you," said the judge, "whether, during the 
period you have lived with your employers — four years 
you state — any similar loss has come to your know- 
ledge ?" 

" One lady said she had lost some money," was the 
sulky answer, most unwillingly given. 

" Was she a customer?" 

" She was." 

"Was the money ever traced?" 

" Not to my knowledge." 

"Did the loss take place in the shop?" 

"It did." 

" And the missing money was never — that you heard 
of — recovered?" 


"How many shop-assistants do Messrs. Steele and 
Whittenbury keep ?" 

"In the whole, nine." 

The senior partner next presented himself He deposed 
to pursuing the prisoner ; overtaking him ; requiring him 
to be searched ; to the resistance which he made ; and to 
the amount of personal suffering which he, the fat and 
wheezy Mr. Steele, endured in the encounter. 

He gave his evidence in a decided, business-like tone ; 
and the point in it which told most against the prisoner 
was this — the minute detail embodied in Steele's testi- 
mony of Wortham's unwillingness to be searched. 

The concluding witness was the policeman, who de- 
posed to searching the prisoner : finding on him the 
missing purse and note ; and to Mrs. Harper's at once 
describing and identifying both. 

The prosecutor's case seemed complete. 

The judge now called on the accused for his defence; 
and Mr. Laconstone began his address to the jury. 

It would be injustice to withhold from it this praise — 
that it was a clever, off-hand, fluent speech. But it was 
altogether declamatory. It presupposed Wortham's guilt 
throughout. And it never allowed the listener a respite 
from the fact that the prisoner had the great good fortune 
to have Mr. Laconstone as his advocate. One point, by 
no means immaterial, he left altogether untouched, 
namely, that, long previous to Wortham's committal, a 


purse liad been missed by a lady-customer in this fasiiion- 
able shop, and never recovered. With a happy compli- 
ment to the judge, and another to the jury, he drew 
towards a close ; intimated that he should call witnesses 
as to character, and then leave the case to their merciful 

The witnesses alluded to answered to their names, and 
gave highly favourable testimony in the prisoner's behalf. 
They confirmed, amply, every assertion which he had 
made when first taken into custody. They proved that 

his errand to the little town of — was to atten,d his 

mother's funeral ; and that her funeral had been fixed, as 
he had said, for "three o'clock precisely, by the officiat- 
ing clergyman." They swore that he had left the house 
where he was staying for the purpose of buying a bit of 
crape to put round his hat, " which was all the mourning 
he could afford." In reply to a question from one of the 
jury, the witness under examination stated that the pri- 
soner was " friendless ; that he had neither father nor 
mother, nor any near relative in the wide world." 

" What is he '?" said the judge : " what is his calling ?" 

" He has been a sailor," was the answer, " and thrice 
shipwrecked, losing each time every rag of clothing he 
had. Now he's a clerk — a collecting clerk I think they 
call him — on board a river-steamer." 

The greatest impression left on the auditory was made 
by the last witness — a superannuated pilot — a venerable 
looking old man with a profusion of glossy white hair, a 
keen bright eye, and an honest and contented smile. He 
said he had known the prisoner " for a matter of eighteen 
years," and had had never heard any " harm of him, but 
much in his praise." Once to his knowledge he had 
saved a man, who had fallen overboard, by jumping after 
him and keeping a firm hold on him till help could 
be had. " Some gem'men made a subscription, and 
handed it to him. He wouldn't have it. No ! Not he. 
He said he ' didn't want to pocket money for saving a 
fellow-creature!' A likely chap that!" concluded the 
old seaman, with a most contemptuous air, " to turn 
pickpocket ! to go into one o' them cussed vanity shops 
and steal a lady's puss. Yah !" 

There was a hearty cheer in court as the old mao 
turned indignantly away. 


The judge instantly repressed this burst of public 
feeling, and proceeded to sum up. 

Calm, dignified, and impressive, he seemed by the im- 
partiality of his statements, and the sustained suavity of 
his manner, the very impersonation of justice. His 
powers of analysis — and they were great — were instantly 
brought to bear upon the case : and in a very few sen- 
tences he presented to the jury the whole transaction, 
thoroughly divested of the false colouring which the ex- 
aggerated statements of counsel had thrown around it. 
He travelled quickly through the testimony of Mrs. 
Harper and Isham Dadd ; and laid stress upon the cir- 
cumstance of the purse and note being both found on the 
prisoner's person, and on the resistance made by him to 
the necessary search. On the other hand, he reminded 
the jury of the fact elicited from Dadd during his examina- 
tion in chief, that money had been previously lost by a 
lady in that very shop and never recovered. The prison- 
er's defence was that he had not stolen the purse or the 
note. That he was not aware that they were upon him : 
and that they must have been put in the side-pocket of 
his jacket by another person. He made no attempt to 
support this statement — somewhat improbable upon the 
very face of it — by any evidence. The jury's province 
was to judge to what degree of belief such a defence was 

Then followed the question of character. The tes- 
timony given in Wortham's favour the judge read over 
slowly, deliberately, and emphatically. Then came his 
comment. -'Character," he remarked, " could not avail 
but in cases where there was conflicting evidence — cases 
where there was absence of proof: character could never 
be allowed to outweigh facts." 

The prisoner listened, anxiously, to this remark, and 
its purport seemed to cut him to the very soul. An ex- 
pression of deep, unmitigated, indescribable anguish 
passed over his countenance. The muscles about the 
mouth worked convulsively for some seconds ; and then 
— the nervous action suddenly ceasing — his face assumed 
the ghastliness and rigidity of a corpse. Despair, for the 
moment, had the mastery. 

Suddenly a thought struck him. He stood up erect in 
the dock, and looked the jury down. Face after face he 


eagerly and rapidly scanned ; and then came a slight 
gesture. Its nature I could nofc well define ; nor can I, 
for obvious reasons, describe it now. But I fancied I saw 
it answered. Low down in the second row of the jury- 
box sat a diminutive, dark-visaged man, with a truly 
Spanish face and flashing eye, whom I had regarded 
earnestly, from time to Ijime, for his singular resemblance 
to Kean. For distinction's sake I will term this Spanish- 
looking personage the eleventh juror. He had paid, from 
first to last, close attention to the case ; and had more 
than once put a pertinent question to a witness. His eye 
— for I watched him narrowly — rested with a stern and 
inquiring gaze upon the prisoner ; and then his Vy^iole 
countenance lit up with a kind and encouraging expres- 
sion. Whatever was the nature of their communication, 
and whatever the medium through which information wSs 
conveyed, I was convinced that the prisoner and No. 11 
understood each other ; and with redoubled curiosity I 
awaited the result. 

The judge still proceeded to charge the jury, but his 
observations were on the point of closing. 

" You have now the whole of the facts belonging to 
the case before you ; upon those facts it is your pro- 
vince to decide ; that decision, you must be well aware, is 
most important to the prisoner : if, after the declarations 
on oath of the various witnesses called before you, you 
entertain any reasonable doubt, it is your duty to give 
the prisoner the benefit of such doubt : your verdict in 
that case will be an acquittal." 

His lordship sunk back in his soft and well-cushioned 
easy-chair, looking somewhat faint and exhausted; and 
the clerk of ariaigns instantly was ready with his nasal 
roar : — 

" Gentlemen of the jury, consider your verdict." 

The jury turned round in their box to consult and 
agree. And the while a species of running comment on 
the trial might be heard here and there buzzing about the 

"Case too clear to admit of doubt!" — "Ingenious 
defence, but flimsy !" — " Transportation to a certainty !" 
— " Young to leave his country for fourteen or twenty 
years!" — "A first offence, doubtless, poor fellow!" — 
'•Hasn't the look of a hardened thief!" 


Time went on. Three, — five, — ten minutes elapsed. 
Still the jury seemed absorbed in an earnest and even 
angry debate. At length the foreman turned round and 
addressed the j udge. 

"My lord, one of the jury seems to think that Mrs. 
Harper hasn't identified the note — she hasn't sworn to it 
in court." 

His lordship seemed for a moment struck by the objec- 
tion. Perhaps the interruption might annoy him. He 
looked, for a judge, slightly flushed, and fidgeted. After 
a brief pause, during which he consulted his notes, the 
dicUim came forth : — 

"Mrs. Harper identified both note and purse in Steele 
and Whittenbury's shop ; identified them immediately 
after their having been taken from the person of the pri- 
soner: she has sworn to that efiect in the witness-box." 

"But, my lord, they were not shewn to her in court — 
she did not swear to them in court. She did not identify 
them in the jury's presence and hearing, and in open 
court say they were hers." 

So persisted the eleventh juror, who was spokesman. 

" Mrs. Harper has identified her property with suffici- 
ent accuracy and decision for the purpose of public jus- 
tice," returned his lordship, stiffly. 

The jury again consulted. But in vain. After a short 
pause, the foreman said, piteously : — 

" We cannot agree, my lord; we wish to retire." 

The judge at once assented. 

" Call a fresh jury ; and give these gentlemen in 
charge of the proper officer. Let them be locked up ; 
and him sworn to their legal and efficient custody." 

With rueful glances the twelve, slowly, withdrew. 
An hour went by, and again they came into court. 
They required — using the foreman as their mouthpiece 
— "fresh instructions and further information from his 

"On what point?" 

" The resistance made by the prisoner when searched ; 
some of the jury are of opinion that he did not resist." 

Again the judge turned to his notes. 

" Resistance he, unquestionably, ofiered. It is so stated 
on oath. The evidence of Mr. Steele is conclusive on 
the point." 


And the judge here read, seriatim, from his notes what 
that worthy had undergone, in his love for justice, upon 
his own premises ! 

The eleventh juror here remarked, with much defer- 
ence of manner, that he had listened with extreme 
earnestness to the evidence, and his impression was, that 
the prisoner had not objected to being searched, but to 
being searched by an interested and unauthorized person. 

A glorious apple of discord proved this skilfully con- 
trived observation. It brought three counsel on their 
legs at once ; and the judge to his notes once more. Mr. 
Laconstone rose and spouted for his client. The prose- 
cuting counsel, senior and junior, had also their say; 
and the judge, as a matter of course, had to act as um- 
pire. After a sharp burst of wrangling, it was agreed 
that the prisoner had not objected to being searched, but 
to being searched by an unauthorized ijerson ; that Mr. 
Steele put himself forward to perform this obnoxious 
duty ; that the prisoner then resisted, and that to Mr. 
Steele's cost. The jury again retired. Three hours 
went by. Twilight gave way to darkness. The court 
sat late. There was a heavy cause before it, and the 
judge seemed resolute that no sacrifice of personal com- 
fort on his part should be wanting to expedite public 
business. At seven a message was delivered by the 
proper officer to the court. "An elderly gentleman was 
on the jury who was subject to fits ; and, as in Wort- 
ham's case, there seemed to him no prospect of the 
jury's agreeing, and as, if they did not agree, they would 
have to sit up all night, he begged that he, for one, 
might be dismissed. He had not slept out of his own 
bed for a matter of three-and-forty years ! (Some wicked 
creatures in court were hardened enough to laugh at 
this authentic and touching statement.) If he did not 
go to bed at his own hour, in his own dwelling, he knew 
very well what would be the consequences. Might he, 
therefore, go?" 

It was signified to this afliicted old gentleman that the 
judge, at present, had no powder to release him. 

Time sped on. Ten o'clock arrived. The court was 
on the point of breaking up, when it was intimated that 
the jury in Wortham's case were unanimous, and wished 
to deliver their verdict. In they came. Some very 


flushed, very angry, and very jaded faces were visible in 
the group ; but in the dark, flashing eye of my Spanish- 
looking friend — his name I subsequently ascertained to 
be Zillett — there was undisguised triumph. 

The clerk of the arraigns, taking up his customary 
snore, inquii-ed : 

" Gentlemen of the jury, are you agreed upon your 
verdict ■?" 

The foreman bowed assent. 

" How say you — is the prisoner, Ralph Wortham, 
guilty or not guilty of the felony with which he stands 
charged in the indictment?" 

" Not guilty !" 

" You say he is not guilty : that is your verdict, and 
so you say all." 

For this result the spectators were evidently unpre- 
pared. A low buzz of surpnse was audible in court, 
intimating that a different issue had been expected. 
Apparently the judge shared this impression. He re- 
marked :- — 

" Prisoner, you have had a merciful jury. Let the 
past never be forgotten as a warning for the future !" 

In a feeble and faint voice came the reply : 

'* I am innocent, my lord ; and so I shall one day be 



Some sixteen or eighteen hours after this result, cir- 
cumstances favoured my wish of having an introduction 
to Mr. Zillett. He was alone ; and the conversation 
was easily brought to bear upon the recent trial. It 
was solely with reference to it that I sought him. 

"The verdict seemed to take the spectators by sur- 
prise," said I, carelessly. 

" It was a lenient verdict ; and the more I reflect upon 
the evidence, the more satisfied I feel with our con- 
clusion," was his reply. 

" You had some difficulty in arriving at it ?" 

" Yes ; we had some obstinate spirits to persuade and 
bend ; one or more such there will always be in every 

And he laughed, as if tickled by the recollection of 
some obdurate colleague — the old gentleman, for in- 
stance< subject to " occasional fits," and apprehensive 


of the most horrible consequences if he was a night 
absent from home. 

"The prisoner must deeply feel his obligations to 

"■ I did my duty, nothing more;" he rejoined, with 
marked but quiet emphasis ; an emphasis so peculiar 
that I was satisfied his reply involved a double meaning. 

"He was aware, I think, of your favorable disposition 
towards him." 

My companion eyed me keenly, but was silent. 

" I could almost fancy," I continued, " that you 
understood each other; tliat some telegraphic commu- 
nication passed between you !" 

" Oh ! ah ! indeed ; that we talked with our fingers 
under the very eye of the judge !" 

"No! no! That is not my meaning; such open 
communication could not well pass in court." 

" To the point, then — be explicit — for I am really at a 
loss to guess your drift," observed Mr. Zillett, slowly, 
with an admirably feigned air of perplexity. 

" This, I mean ; that the prisoner knew by some 
medium of communication impenetrable by others, that 
in you he had a friend!" 

The rejoinder was immediate. Mr. Zillett lifted up 
his eyebrows, and exclaimed : — 

" Never saw him before in my life, shall probably never 
see him again ; know nothing about his friends, his con- 
nections, his intentions. When he entered the dock, to 
me he was a prisoner, and nothing more." 

" Did he remain such to you throughout the trialf^ 

He laughed heartily at my query, and then parried 

" You question closely. Sir ; and, if in the law, do 
honour to the special pleader under whom you have com- 
menced your career." 

Another laugh, and he continued :— ■ 

" Do I fail in making you comprehend that I was 
merely a juror on this occasion, most unquestionably no 
personal friend or even acquaintance of this unfortunate 
party ?" 

*' But on a sudden," persisted I, " you took the most 
decided and extraordinary interest in the case?" 

" I did so from the first. I had an impression— which 


deepened as the evidence was developed — that the real 
criminal vt^as in court, but not in the dock. I recognized 
him, methought, in the w^itness-box. You cannot — will 
not expect me to be more explicit. It would be im- 
proper. But with such an impression, deeply and con- 
scientiously entertained, nothing would have induced me 
to pronounce Wortham guilty." 

" And," said I, "from the time he entered the court 
to the time he quitted it Ids relation to you remained un- 
changed? From the commencement to the close of the 
trial he was to you a stranger, an alien, nothing more'?" 

Again he laughed long and merrily. 

" You are puzzled," said he, " as wiser men have been 
before you. Come! come! I affirm nothing. I deny 
nothing. You are no Inquisitor; nor am I before tlie 
Holy Tribunal. I am, therefore, not compelled to make 
admissions. Owning no adherence to the llomish Church, 
I am, therefore, not enjoined to confession! Now for a 
change of subject. How is our mutual friend, Illing- 
worth ? Have the Buxton Baths agreed with himV" 

Other chit-chat followed. But the conversation closed 
with, on my part, the most decided impression that there 
was a mystery — powerless as I was to unravel it. 
* '' * * * * # 

Years — I forget how many — rolled away ere we again 
met in Warwickshire. Zillett needed, however, no 
remark on my part to freshen up his recollections of the 
past. He was, himself, the first to advert to them. 

"Inquisitor!" said he, with a smile, " what are the 
latest tidings you bring from Mr. Justice Gazelee? You 
remember the last time we sat in the law chiefs pre- 

' I do ; and our subsequent interview." 

" At which you were foiled! Ha! ha! ha! Come, for- 
give me ! You will respect my opinions in future. My 
suspicions, you see, were well founded!" 

" On what subject?" 

"What! have you yet to learn the disclosures at 
Steele and Whittenbury's?" 

"I had forgotten their names." 

"But not Wortham's?" said he, somewhat reproach- 

" No, no! whatever relates to him has interest for me." 


"So J thought; now listen. Eighteen months after 
that memorable trial, during which you would have it 
that the prisoner and myself privately communicated " 

" And which opinion," I ejaculated, " I entertain to 
this hour!" 

" Oh ! Ah ! Well ! Eighteen months afterwards, Ishara 
Dadd, whose bearing in the witness-box you cannot well 
have forgotten, was apprehended for embezzlement. 
Some dozen frauds were established against him ; and, at 
his employers' instance, the Government of the day com- 
passionately sent this delicate-looking young man, for 
change of air, to Sydney! Before he sailed, it occurred 
to him that it would be somewhat awkward to land in a 
new colony penniless ; and that his acknowledged reputa- 
tion for raising the wind demanded that he should make a 
final attempt at duping the knowing ones. From mere 
force of habit he selected Mr. Whittenbury. To that 
figurative personage he sent, through an unsuspected 
channel, a message, bearing this import — that he had in- 
formation to give Mr. W. on a most interesting point ; 
that this information none could impart but himself, 
Dadd ; that it had reference to commercial matters ; that, 
before he divulged it, he demanded ten pounds down, in 
gold; that his stay in England was 'uncertain;' and 
therefore that ' an early application was desirable.' The 
junior partner," continued Mr. Zillett, " was sorely puz- 
zled. Dadd he believed to be a consummate rogue ; but 
still he might be in possession of valuable information. 
The firm might have been robbed to a greater extent 
than had as yet been ascertained. Dadd might have 
accomplices. "Whittenbury shuddered at the idea, and 
sought counsel of his experienced principal. That 
worthy was furious. 'What could his partner mean?' 
he demanded. 'Did he wish to fool away the entire 
means of the firm? Were they not sufficient losers by 
that villain Dadd already?' — Mr. W. shook his head in 
truly mournful acquiescence. — ' It's all Bam!'' continued 
Mr. Steele, vociferously, as soon as his breath would 
permit him to indulge in a hearty ejaculation. ' Ugh I 
ugh ! ugh ! This cough will kill me. It's imposition 
from beginning to end. Ugh ! ugh! Ten pounds, for- 
sooth! Give, if you will; but let the money be your 
own. The firm shall never advance it. That I'm re- 


solved on. Ugh ! ugh ! ugh ! Oh dear, these cough pills, 
at five shillings a box, do me no manner of good. I 
shall break a blood-vessel. And then, Whittenbury, 
you'll be, morally, my murderer. But, mark you ; I've di- 
rected every farthing of my capital to be withdrawn from 
the firm.' — ' Don't allude, pray don't, to any thing so 
dreadful,' cried Whittenbury, piteously. Whether this 
remark," said Zillett, slyly, " had reference to the demise 
of his partner, or to the diversion of his capital, does not 
clearly appear. ' But suppose,' persisted the junior, 
earnestly, 'that truth has not entirely deserted this 
wretched creature, Dadd; suppose that there is some 

important disclosure impending ' ' Fiddle-faddle 

with your long words,' shouted Steele (his face grew 
very purple) — ' fiddle-faddle ! there is nothing pending 
but doubtful debts to the tune of a thousand pounds, 
which I wish you would get in.' ' There many be ac- 
complices,' insinuated W., softly ; ' there may be asso- 
ciates ; there may be snakes in the firm, snakes which we 
are warming at our own fire, only hereafter to sting us. 
We steer, Mr. Steele, we steer, believe me, between 

Scylla and Charybdis ' His partner would hear no 

more. He roused himself up, looked his partner full in 
the face, and remarked, with upbraiding emphasis, ' I've 
heard you mention these people very often before; so 
often, indeed, have their names been upon your tongue, 
that I have searched the books carefully, to see when 
and for what they were customers. I can find no men- 
tion of 'em. None — none whatever! and therefore,' said 
Steele — looking daggers the while at his delinquent col- 
league — ' my mind's made up ! They're improper cha- 
racters! Yes, yes! That has long been my impression. 
And now, let me tell you. Sir, that, as a family man, 
you should have scorned to have soiled your lips with 
any mention of such people. Syllee and Chybdis, indeed ! 
For shame of yourself! For shame, I say!' — 'Good 
heavens, Steele!' began the junior; 'is it possible you 

can labour under such a mistake as ' — ' Not a word, 

Sir!' said the senior, severely ; ' not a word — or I make 
it my business, this very evening, to call on Mrs. Whit- 
tenbury !' " 

" That was a potent name to conjure with, and the 
menaced man by no means relished even a passing refer- 


ence to it ; but, masking his chagrin under a smile, he 
observed, ' Well, Sir, we will waive that subject for the 
present: hereafter I will return to it.' — 'Return to it!' 
exclaimed Mr. Steele,- with horror; 'what! you glory in 
your shame? Now I've done with you! No! not 
another word this awful night! Rummage the gaol for 
Isham Dadd when you will ; say to him what you will ; 
give him what you will: but mind — no message from 
me ; no money of mine. Return to Syllee and Chybdis 
hereafter, eh? Infamy! Infamy! That unfortunate 
Mrs. Whittenbury ! If there's a wife upon this earth to 
be pitied, it's that deceived, much enduring, and most 
unsuspecting woman !' And, waving his hands before 
him, in token of irrepressible horror, Mr. Steele went, or 
rather waddled, his way. His partner, meanwhile, sought 
the gaol, and obtained, with some difficulty, an interview 
with Dadd. The turnkey, at the former's request, left 
them alone. For a moment the dishonest servant seemed 
abashed by the presence of his injured master. Recover- 
ing himself, he quickly asked, with great coolness, whether 
he ' came thither to reproach him with the past, or to 
comply vi^ith his conditions.' — ' Reproaches, though de- 
served, would be useless,' said Whittenbury; 'and thus, 
though with strong misgivings, I am prepared to close 
with your proposal.' — 'The money?' was the next in- 
quiry, made with as much effrontery as if he was urging 
the payment of a just debt. — 'It is here.' — 'Hand it 
over.' — ' No ; not until you have given the information 
you profess to possess.' — Dadd eyed him, and remarked, 
sullenly, ' Pay first : listen afterwards.' From this posi- 
tion no persuasion or remonstrance could induce him to 
depart. At length Mr. Whittenbury held out to him, in 
silence, the bribe agreed on. The convict keenly scru- 
tinized the coin, to ascertain that it was genuine ; satisfied 
on this head, he stowed it away carefully in various parts 
of his felon's garb. These precautions completed, he 
turned towards his late employer, and said, with some- 
thing very like a sneer, ' Having paid down the purchase- 
money, let me wish you joy of your bargain !' The 
junior recollected his senior's repeated cautions, and felt 
that 'he was dojie!^ — 'What I have to say,' continued 
Dadd, ' will bring no money into your till, or take a 
single doubtful debt off" your books. But it will startle 


your mind, and relieve mine. You remember Mrs. Harp- 
er's purse, and the trial of Ralph Wortham for taking 
it V — ' Yes ; and the scandalous verdict of the jury in 
acquitting him.' — ' It was a just verdict,' said the felon, 
gravely ; ' he veas not the thief.' — ' Who was V — ' I !' 
returned the other, in a daring tone ; 'J took it. I wanted 
money. I had lost a whole year's salary at a low shilling 
hell. My debts were pressing, and I was desperate. I 
took the purse. Could I have kept it I should not have 
been here; but Steele's activity ruined all.' — 'You took 
it ! — how ? — when V — ' The moment in which Wortham, 
tired of waiting, bolted from the counter. The silly, vain 
woman had paraded her bank-note and purse so frequently 
and ostentatiously that the temptation w^as more than I 
could resist ; my debts made me frantic, and fifty pounds 
would pay most. I seized it slyly, hoping that suspicion 
would light on Wortham ; and so it did. As to getting 
the note quickly off my hands I had no fears. At one 
or othei- of my gaming haunts I knew I could pass it. I 

watched my opportunity and succeeded .' 'And 

then ?' ' Oh ! Steele brought him back ; and with him a 
policeman ; and then there was a hubbub, and a search, 
and a row, which you must well remember; my courage 
failed me ; I began to fear that the search might become 
general ; so availing myself of the confusion and uproar 
which prevailed when Wortham upset Steele, I helped, 
and very gladly helped, to drag the supposed thief into 
the inner shop to be searched ; while so doing I securely 
placed note and purse in the side pocket of his jacket. 
The rest you know.' 

'"And is this all you have to tell me?' cried the 
amazed and sickening "Whittenbury, after a pause. 

" ' Yes ! all ! No ; stop — not all. I have a: word 
or two more to add, and they are words of advice : Pay 
your assistants better, and you will have fewer thefts ; 
treat them not as brutes but as Christians, and you will 
have more chance of their regarding your interest as their 
own ; don't let them see in so many of their masters the 
most wanton waste and extravagance, unlimited expendi- 
ture, and the most costly follies, and expect them, with 
such an example before their eyes, to be frugal, industri- 
ous, self-denying, and trustworthy. Farewell! You 
don't repent of your bargain, do you ? You have surely 


had your money's worth ?' And, with a low, mocking 
laugh, the villain turned away." 

"And now," inquired Zillett, as he closed his recital, 
"what is your opinion of Mr. Isham Dadd? and what 
your opinion of the refractory juryman?" 

" That both suggest matter for thought. But tell me 
■ — where is Wortham ?" 

" On the bounding sea ; a prosperou,s man ; independ- 
ent, and respected." 

" Another inquiry : Since light has dawned upon 
myself, and I, like you, am bound by the ' mystic tie,' 
reply to me unreservedly." 

"I will." 

"Did you not discover him in court to be a Mason?" 

^^ I did; nnd m distress. You know our creed. Was I 
to stand aloof from him because the world frowned on 
him ; and the more when, from the first, I entertained 
deeply-rooted and irremoveable suspicions that he ought 
not to have been in the dock at all !" 

"But he owed his deliverance mainly to the recogni- 
tion of brotherhood ?" 

" And to the influence of previous character ; both 
weighed strongly with me. Strongly, do I say?" said 
Zillett, warmly and eagerly correcting himself; "un- 
governably, is the proper term. A brother — view him 
where you will — is a brother all the world over." 




" Metliinks," said the English merchant, " I should like to visit the 
ruins of yonder castle, situated by the waterfall. There is something 
of melancholy dignity in such a scene, which reconciles us to the mis- 
fortunes of our own time, by showing that our ancestors, who were, 
perhaps, more intelligent or more powerful, have, nevertheless, in their 
days, encountered cares and distresses similar to those which we now 
groan under." — Sir Walter Scott : Anne of Geierstein. 

" His Royal Highness the Duke of Sussex is expected 
here, to-day, on a visit to the Colonel, and I fear I must 
refuse you admittance." 

Such was the unwelcome greeting we received from 
the porter the morning on which we presented ourselves 
at Newstead. The faces of many of our party lengthened 
visibly. We had come some considerable distance. A 
good deal of inconvenience had been submitted to in 
order to reach the Abbey early. With some, moreover, 
it was their last day in Nottinghamshire — their final and 
only opportunity of seeing the early home of Byron. 
The porter was again applied to ; and the usual sop to 
Cerberus proftered. The official was inexorable. He 
replied, bluntly : 

" The colonel was not in the habit of making excep- 
tions : as he did to one he did to all." 

"Take in my card, at any rate," said our leader; "if 
shewn to Colonel Wildman, I flatter myself he will not 
close his gates upon the party." 

"One rule for all," persisted the porter: "but your 
card. Sir, shall undoubtedly be sent up to the colonel 

After a long and anxious pause, a groom came leisurely 


down to us, with the cheering tidings that ^'the prince 
was not expected to arrive till evening ; and that, mean- 
while, the house and grounds were open to us." 

It is a noble pile ; and, as associated with the name 
of Byron, must, for ages to come, be a house of renown. 
We went leisurely over it ; and then adjourned to the 
grounds. Every object seems to recall the poet and his 
writings. There is the nobly proportioned ruined arch, 
magnificent even in decay, through which the wind sighs 
so wildly, and which the bard has vividly described in a 
fine stanza of one of the most objectionable of his poems. 
The lake, too, in which he and "Boatswain" used to 
gambol, was before us — a broad sheet of water, and 
covered, when we saw it, under the influence of a fresh 
breeze, with mimic waves. Looking full upon this lake 
is the poet's bed-room. The furniture in it, as having 
been used by him, naturally arrests attention. Its value 
consists entirely in its association with Byron. It is old, 
ill-used and shabby. We saw the monument raised by 
the poet to his favourite — '■'■Boatswain'''' — and the tree 
where he had carved his own and his sister's name^ — the 
sister to whom he was so deeply and deservedly attached 
— was specially pointed out to us. Near a path leading 
to the plantation are two trees, which grow close together 
— so close as to suggest the idea that they spring from 
the same stem — brother and sister. On one of these 
may be read, carved by the poet — 

Byron, 1813. 


Frail memorials of fervent affection! The greatest 
possible care is taken of these trees ; and no effort 
deemed superfluous to secure them from desecration and 
injury. In fact, one of the many excellent traits in the 
present owner of the Abbey is the jealous vigilance with 
which he keeps up all that Lord Byron valued ; cherishes 
whatever is connected with his name or fame ; attends 
to his old pensioners ; provides for the comforts of former 
favourites ; and, with a magnanimous self-denial which 
no other than a truly noble spirit could exercise, is con- 
tent that the old and popular phrase should still pass 
current — " Newstead Abbey and Lord Byron j" instead 

' Mrs. Leigh. 

130 A mason's home: NKW?5TEAD ABBEr 

of being superseded by " Newstead Abbey and Colonel 
Wildman." No relative could be more tender of the 
poet's fame, or more attached to his memory, than his true- 
hearted successor and former school-fellow! 

The chapel and cloisters are very perfect and striking. 
The former dim, gloomy, and sepulchral ; lit up invariably 
with lamps during the celebration of divine service. Here 
we were shewn the stone coffin whence Byron drew the 
skull which he mounted in silver, and used as a drinking 
goblet. Now of this far-famed drinking-cup one word. 
Despite the costly manner in which it has been mounted, 
and the elaboration of art bestowed upon it, and the 
lines written on it, and the penchant of the poet for it, 
it is a very disagreeable affair; and though ranked among 
the memorabilia of the Abbey, the sooner one is able to 
dismiss it from recollection the better. While passing 
through the cloisters, one of our party asked the grey- 
headed, grave-looking man who preceded us as our Cice- 
rone, whether " the Abbey was quiet in the sma' hours ?" 
The conductor was silent. He affected not to have heard 
the question. But I was persuaded he had; and had 
understood it. Of the same mind was the fair querist ; 
for she quickly renewed her question, with the additional 
remark, that she had heard that Newstead had, occasion- 
ally, its unearthly visitants. Still the guide preserved 
silence. But the lady, with true feminine perseverance, 
reiterated her inquiries, and those in so determined a tone 
that reply was indispensable. 

"/i! is troubled at timcs,^^ said the old man, reluctantly, 
but firmly. 

" By whom V" 

The response was boldly and sturdily given this time. 

"By those who cannot rest in their graves, and won't 
let other honest people rest oiit of them. Folks do come 
again that shouldn't! That's the fact! and there's no 
denying it. These cloisters are the place they're parti- 
cular partial to. The colonel won't have it so. But they 
come for all that. An old monk 'specially. One of the 
duke's people saw him. It nearly killed the man ; he 
wasn't himself for hours after ! I'm not surprised — not 
I. Blessed saints !" (I inferred from this ejaculation that 
he was a Romanist.) " To hear of such things is bad 
enough : but to see — oh dear ! oh dear !" 


The amusement caused by this avowal to some of our 
party was marvellous. The lady, however, who had 
elicited the history was much too absorbed in pursuing 
it to heed our indecent merriment: with the deepest 
gravity she resumed : — 

" Have you ever seen any thing strange ?" 

"No! thanks be praised, I never have ; but I've heard 
enough. The sighs — the shrieks that I've listened to 
before now. My very marrow has been chilled within 

" And how do you account for it ?" 

" Why," returned he, with earnest sincerit}'-, "I lay it, 
in part, to the wickedness of the late lord — a sad one he 
undoubtedly was — and in ];)art I lay it to the skull. So 
long as that skull is kept above ground, that old monk 
will v^alk about and claim it." 

"Oh! Ah!" cried the wag of the party; "I under- 
stand you now perfectly ! you mean that the skull be- 
longs to the old gentleman — the walking monk — and 
that he feels himself rather at a loss, and uncomfortable 
without it?" 

The guide's indignation was extreme. 

"Oh!" cried he, angrily; "if you make a jest of this, 
I've done: but at any rate you might, methinks, find a 
fitter place to talk in this fashion on such a subject." 

And out of the chapel and cloisters he very uncere- 
moniously bundled us; nor would he open his lips again 
during the remainder of the walk ! 

We wandered over the mansion admiring, among other 
articles of taste and vertu, the many fine cabinets which it 
contains. One, exquisitely inlaid, riveted the gaze of our 
fair companions. They lingered wistfully before it with 
eager eyes. rfome old divine — Fuller, if I mistake not 
— says : " Eschew, if thou aimest at a life of quiet, the 
uncharitable task of attempting to divine the motives of 
thy fellow." Sound counsel, albeit quaintly expressed. 
Recalling it, methought — " the purport of those earnest 
glances, who shall venture to translate V 

To those troubled with an autograph mania, the greatest 
temptation would be that of bolting with " the visitors' 
book !" What an array of glorious names does it contain! 
The gifted and the intelligent from every land seem to 
have testified, by their pilgrimage to Newstead, their 

122 A mason's home : newstead abbey 

tribute to the magic of song, and the fame of Byron. 
Artists, poets, politicians, nobles, all are there. And as 
I glanced over the list, I remarked that scarcely any 
foreigner of note had visited this country u^ho had not 
included in his arrangements a peep at Newstead. Apart, 
however, and wholly distinct from the high poetic in- 
terest which the Abbey must always retain, it possesses 
another attraction for Masons as the home of a deservedly 
popular member of the Order, and as the favorite retreat 
of a much-beloved G. M. The Duke of Sussex was a 
frequent guest at Newstead ; its " tranquillity, repose, 
and freedom were," he said, " peculiarly grateful" to 
him. In the drawing-room is his full-length portrait, 
cleverly done, and like him. 

Near this apartment is the duke's sleeping-room — lofty 
and handsome. Close to it on one side is a small private 
sitting-room, where he generally sat and wrote all the 
morning: and on the other, leading out of his bed-room, 
is a small sleeping apartment for his confidential valet — 
who was thus placed to be, in case of illness, within im- 
mediate reach of the duke's summons. 

While standing before the prince's portrait, and scan- 
ning it attentively, a middle-aged, military-looking man, 
erect in his carriage, and, but for a slight limp in his 
gait, active and rapid in all his movements, came up and 
said : — 

"Ah! Ha! You are looking at that portrait closely, 
to make yourself master of its defects : it is a good pic- 
ture, but not a good likeness." 

"I deemed it both." 

" Pardon me — you are wrong : it is much more like 
the duke's daughter, Madame D'Este,^ than like himself: 
I ought to be a judge, for I see him frequently : I dine 
with him in fact to-day. You are aware, I presume, that 
when the duke is at Newstead, the colonel can invite no 
one to his table without previously mentioning the name 
to H. R. H., and receiving his permission. Such is court 

" When will the prince arrive ?" 

" To-night at seven : he would have been here yester- 
day, but an engagement to the Princess Victoria inter- 

" Now I.adA' Wilde. 


vened — an engagement to which he would sacrifice any- 
other. The love he bears her resembles that of a doting 
father towards an only child. To hear him speak of her, 
one would imagine that she stood to him in that relation : 
all the love he cherished for the Duke of Kent — his 
favourite brother- — seems to have descended by inherit- 
ance to his orphan daughter. And report says the little 
princess is equally attached to her Whiggish uncle. But 
come — I see by the way in which you scan that portrait 
that you are a Sussexite — and if you will step into the 
library I will shew you one or two rarities not generally- 
visible to the mob of strangers : and give you, in addition, 
one or two traits of the duke, from his own conversation ; 
they may- furnish matter for thought hereafter." 

These, on parting, I carefully noted down. Those 
which relate to parties still living, or to private indi- 
viduals, I have suppressed ; the others, as relating either 
to personages who maybe deemed historical, or to parties 
on whom the grave has closed, I have deemed myself at 
full liberty to retain. 


" The Prince Regent had little real affection for his 
daughter. The fact is, he feared her ! The day after he 
learnt her demise, his comment on the event to one of his 
intimates was this : — ' The nation will lament her : but to 
me it is a relief P " 


" The regard which the duke felt for Lord Castlereagh 
was great, undissembled, and enduring to the last. It 
puzzled most people. No one could well account for it, 
because no two men had less in common as to habits and 
and character. The duke, all soldierly frankness. The 
foreign secretary, steeped in tracasserie, finesse, and diplo- 
matic manoeuvres. The duke speaks, and you seize, at 
once, his meaning. Lord Castlereagh rounded sentence 
after sentence, and you knew as much of his real bent 
and object when he had finished as when he began! It 
shews, however, how deeply the duke had studied the 
diplomatist, since he was the first to notice Lord Castle- 
reagh's aberration of intellect. He mentioned it first to 

124 A mason's home : newstead abbey 

the king, and then to his colleagues. His impression 
was deemed ill-founded ; so fixed, however, was it in the 
duke's mind, that some days before the event, he said to 
a dependent of the minister — one of his secretaries, if I 
mistake not — ' Watch his lordship carefully : his mind is 
going.' " 


" The princess^ resembled her father in many points 
of character ; in his stern and soldierly-liking for punctu- 
ality ; in his love of order ; aversion to being humbugged, 
and attention to pecuniary details. I have suspicions, 
too, that she will inherit the duke's penchant for building. 
Never was he so happy as when dabbling in bricks and 
mortar. Castlebar Hill could say something on this 
point. But independent of her paternal inheritance of 
sincerity and straightforwardness, she has a shrewdness 
of character quite her own. I remember some years ago, 
when she was a little girl, her coming up to me, and 
after some confidential chit-chat, whispering with a sad 

and disappointed air — ' Uncle ! is not near so wise as 

she looks ! When I ask her to explain to me something 
puzzling, she always says — "Your Royal Highness will 
be pleased to consult your dictionary." No! No ! she is 
not, I can assure you, near so wise as she looks.' Now," 
said the duke, laughing till the tears stood in his eyes, 
" nothing could be more comic or more true, for if there 
ever was a solemn and imposing-looking personage upon 

this earth, it was ! Ha! Ha! Ha! Should my 

little niece live — as I pray God she may — to be the con- 
stitutional sovereign of tlais great country, she will find 
many people about her in the self-same predicament," — 
and again he laughed merrily, — "not near so wise as 
they look !" 


" One, and not the least curious, feature in the affair 
was, that the Regent was kejjt fully informed, by some 
unsuspected agent, of the daily life of his unfortunate 
consort. He was in full possession of all her movements. 
She never had a party but he knew who composed it. 

^ Victoria. 


She never took a journey without the route and the inci- 
dents of travel being reported to him in detail. Every 
escapade of hers was duly chronicled ; and faithfully, too ; 
for when proceedings were finally taken, the subordinate 
law people — those who had the getting up of the case — 
found the king more au fait of the whole business than 
they were themselves. ' Amend that,' said he on one 
occasion — 'you are wrong as to time. The date of that 
transaction is so and so' — naming the day accurately ; 
' and the parties present were these ;' and he repeated 
their names one by one. Great pains were taken to 
ascertain the king's informant ; but in vain." 


" Soon after he became mixed up with the affairs of 
Drury-lane Theatre, he received a letter from some reli- 
gious fanatic, telling him that he had deserted, in a mea- 
sure, his proper post in the House of Commons, and that 
the wrath of the Supreme would light upon him ; that 
whoever endeavoured to keep theatres open, and make 
that species of property stable and prosperous, warred 
with the Most High, and was sure of signal punishment 
and defeat. It closed with the remarkable hint, that 
worse calamities might befal a man than the loss of bodily 
health or reduction i?i worldly circumstances. It was a long 
letter ; in some parts cleverly, very cleverly written, 
but violent; and to my judgment, in two or three pas- 
sages, somewhat profane. Whitbread was highly amused 
with it, and shewed it about, as a sample of the curious 
correspondence with which he was from time to time 
greeted. But it would have been well if the warning 
had been heeded. Beyond all question, the perplexities 
and harass arising out of the pecuniary embarrassments 
of Drury-lane hastened the sad catastrophe. As a public 
man — a thoroughly fearless speaker — and as the organ of 
that public opinion which keeps a prime minister some- 
what to his duty, Whitbread's loss has never been made 


"It is a popular impression, but a false one, that 
the downfal of Charles X, resulted from the pernicious 

126 A mason's home : newstead abbey 

counsels of Prince Polignac. An influence far mightier 
than his moulded the purposes of the monarch. The 
evil genius of Charles X. existed in the person of his 
confessor. The Abbe de Latil, a man of very narrow- 
views, who had been educated in a cloister, and never rose 
superior to its prejudices, ruled the king. He was with 
him during his hrst exile in this country, when he 
resided at Holyrood House, in '98, '99, and 1800 ; he was 
then his spiritual director ; eventually he became Cardi- 
nal de Latil, and Archbishop of Rheinis. Talleyrand 
foresaw the peril of his counsels to Charles, and sought 
to avert it by adroitly suggesting to the king that ' there 
was a great work to be done in the Church ; that none 
was so fitted for its execution as the cardinal, who, he 
hoped, with the monarch's permission, would, in future, 
confine his attention to ecclesiastical affairs.' — The king 
replied, in substance, that the presence and opinion of 
the cardinal were indispensable to him ! A few months 
later a very distinguished man, one of his most attached 
friends in this country — one who had the right, from previous 
services, to address him — ventured to warn him of the dan- 
ger of having a secret adviser — an adviser apart from his 
council of ministers — that adviser irresponsible, and ne- 
cessarily ill-informed as to the true interests of society, 
and inexperienced in the conduct of public affairs. The 
king's reply w^as — -'The Archbishop has been with me in 
all my misfortunes. I have no secrets apart from him. 
My opinion of his judgment, my recollections of his 
past fidelity, and the precepts of my religion, forbid 
reserve between us.' — The Duchess d'Angouleme had a 
hint given her on the subject. Her rej^ly was stern and 
sufficiently curt. ' The views and principles of the Car- 
dinal Archbishop are my oivn /' Never was a reigning 
family so proof against waraings ! Well ! The end was 
at hand. The press had been rather free in its censures on 
the Church, and somewhat smart in its satire on the 
priesthood. The Cardinal resolved it should be shackled, 
and persuaded his master to fetter it, in one of those 
three famous ordon nances which hurled him from the 
throne, and seated Louis Philippe upon it. Poor Duch- 
esse d'Angouleme! — 'the only man in the family!' as 
Buonaparte called her. Her reply about views and prin- 
ciples reminds me of the late king's retort, when Prince 


of Wales, to Lord Erskine — one of the happiest retorts 
he ever made. It was launched at a private dinner, 
v^^here all parties, I presume, were rather mellow. His 
lordship, nettled, not perhaps without reason, at the 
prince's neglect, made some very extravagant and prepos- 
terous assertion, and then defended it by saying, 'The 
view he had taken was part and parcel of his principles 
— principles which had seated his Royal Highness's 
family on the throne.' — ' You mistake, my Lord,' replied 
the prince, ' they are principles which would unseat any 
family from any throne !' — The rejoinder," added the 
dake, "was never forgiven." 


Our unconscionably long morning was now drawing to 
a close, and we prepared to bid Newstead adieu. As we 
left the grounds, who should hobble within hail but our 
friend the Ghost-fancier, and the paymaster of our group 
hurried towards him with a gratuity. He opened his palm 
\vith remarkable alacrity, but not his lips : not a syllable 
in the way of acknowledgment escaped him. His angry 
eye and flushed cheek alone spoke. These told us that 
he had not forgiven us; that the attempt to turn real, 
undoubted, hona-Jide ghosts into jokes was fresh in his 
recollection ; and to our decided disadvantage. Still de- 
sirous of " amicable relations," I ventured to bid him 
good morning. His reply was something between a 
grunt and a growl ; so expressive of displeasure, offended 
dignity, suspicion and reproof, that it, involuntarily, 
raised a smile more or less broad on each of our impeni- 
tent faces. 

We turned away ; and the indignant official then 
relieved himself of a very long sentence, uttered with 
portentous earnestness. Its precise import none of us 
could catch, but the prominent word, duly emphasized, 

was "SCOFFERS." 



" He was one of those who are well known only to intimate observers, 
and whom a friend could not know intimately without making daily dis- 
coveries of virtue, and wisdom, and sensibility. Under that calm and 
cautious exterior, and behind that modesty which was most apparent, 
there lay the utmost warmth of heart and anxiety of kinduess, and an 
ardour for all good things fresh and sincere, so rarely felt but in youth. 
And the wonder of all was, that he had preserved this through all 
the habits of London life." — " Character of a Friend," by the late 
Fkancis Horner, M.P. 

The frank and fearless Sydney Smith, in one of his 
quaint letters to Lord John Russell, alludes more than 
once to the prizes in the Church — few in number — which 
he maintains should be preserved intact as a set-off to the 
blanks. He persuades himself that such livings as Stan- 
hope, and Doddington, and Bolton Percy, and Lambeth, 
are so many inducements to men of vigorous intellect and 
varied attainments to enter the Church, which would 
otherwise be deprived of their abilities and services. He 
maintains, moreover, that the existence of such benefices 
holds out the cordial of hope to many a struggling and 
wayworn labourer in the vineyard, who grapples cheer- 
fully with penury, and toils on, year after year, unremit- 
tingly and willingly, under the impression that ease and 
independtvice may await him in the evening of life; and 
are beyond question attainable by perseverance and in- 
dustry. "W^ith these arguments 1 presume not to med- 
dle. On their aptness or irrelevancy I leave abler heads 
to decide. This only, and with all humility, is suggest- 
ed, that if ever there was a body which, in the privation, 
self-denial, and penury, inseparable from their profession, 
required the stimulus of hope, it is that body which is 


constituted by the curates of the Church of England. 
Never were men so weak who might — if they loould unite 
— be so strong! Never were men so helpless and depend- 
ent in " the day of adversity," who might — if they would 
co-operate — be so fully and thoroughly prepared for it. 
No general super-annuitant fund! No asylum for the 
aged, decrepit, worn-out servant of the altar! No retir- 
ing pension for those whom disease, or accident, or lo'ss 
of voice, or loss of sight, or mental alienation incapaci- 
tates for active service! So long as health, and spirits, 
and energies last, he toils : so long as he can vvorlc, he 
may reckon on a scanty maintenance ; but let any of the 
ills incident to mortality surprise him, and then point 
out, if you can, a more dependent, helpless, sorrow- 
stricken, defenceless being than the invalided or incapaci- 
tated clergyman. 

Masons ' let the want of union exhibited l^y these con- 
tented but improvident men school you ! Heed their 
miserable deficiency in forecast, and avoid it. Press on, 
with every energy you possess, the erection, establish- 
ment, and endowment of that noble institution projected 
by one of the most thoughtful and benevolent of your 
order — that institution which will attest the principles 
of your body far more favourably than the most laboured 
eulogy or the most aristocratic patronage — the Asylum 


petty objection suffice to weaken your conviction of its 
paramount necessity. Let no representations from the 
envious or the timid induce you to waver in your support 
of a scheme which holds out the promise of such a home 
for the lonely. Let no cavils tempt you to slacken in your 
representations of the importance, generally, to the 
order of such a charity ; of its harmony and congruity 
with our principles — that it is the fruit of Masonic pre- 
cept, ripened in the sunshine of Masonic beneficence. 
Let neither the torpor of one, nor the ridicule of another, 
nor the thinly-veiled hostility of a third, nor the official 
indifference of a fourth, release you from its determined 
advocacy, until you see the charity placed upon a per- 
manent basis — until you see it built, officered, and en- 
dowed in a way that bids fair to secure to it — so far as 
aught can be secure in a scene so stamped with change 
and vicissitude — prosperity and perpetuity. 


That the clergy need some haven of the kind is proved 
by daily instances of bitter sorrow and suffering. Take one 
case among many. It forms the subject of a printed ap- 
peal, and thus there can be no indelicacy in alluding to it : — 

" The Rev. Robert Lynam, M. A., died in October, 1845, 
leaving a widow, and nine children, with no provision, 
except an annuity of 40/., belonging to Mrs. Lynam her- 
self. He was in his fiftieth year, and by educational and 
literary occupations, combined with his clerical labours, 
had supported his family with scrupulous integrity. 

" He was known to the public as author of a Con- 
tinuation of ' Goldsmith's History of England,' and as 
editor of the works of several standard authors, especially 
Addison, Paley, Johnson, Robertson, RoUin, and Skelton, 
with biographical and critical introductions. 

" He liad been educated at Christ's Hospital, and at 
Trinit}^ College, Cambridge. He was Jar seven years morii- 
ing preacher at the Magdalen Hospital; and during the last 
twelve year's of his life he had been curate of St. Giles'' s Without 
Cripplegate, where he died. 

" Many of the inhabitants of that parish testified their 
esteem for his character by a liberal donation to him in 
his lingering illness; voluntarily attended in large num- 
bers at his funeral, the expenses of which they defrayed; 
and they have since kindly formed a contribution amongst 
themselves for the relief of his widovv^ and numerous 
family. Some of his personal friends, aided b}^ the exer- 
tions of others to whom he was less known (amongst 
whom are the Bishop of London, Archdeacons Hale and 
Hollingworth, Rev. Dr. G-illy, of Durham ; Professor 
Scholefield, Rev. Dr. Shepherd, Rev. Dr. Major, Sir. W. 
R. Farquhar, &c.), have joined in that contribution, and 
the proceeds, amounting to 300/. Three per Cent. Con- 
sols, have been invested in the names of Mrs. Lynam 
herself, Mr. J. Seeley, church-warden, and the Rev. Ed- 
ward Rice, D.D., as trustees. 

" Any additional donations, to be similarly applied, 
that benevolent persons may be disposed to give in aid of 
the bereft family of this deserving curate, will be thank- 
fully received." 

But in this statement bare justice is done to the 
departed. Borne down by infirm health and adverse cir- 
cumstances, Mr. Lynam had, nevertheless, supported his 


large family up to the period of his last illness, without 
having incurred one single j)enny of debt ! 

Here, then, was an amiable man — a scholar — an indus- 
trious man — a man who acted habitually on principle — 
who shunned incurring any obligation which he was not 
fully satisfied he could meet — left in his most trying hour 
to the mercy and benevolence of his fellows. 

He died at fifty a curate ! His people loved him. This 
is quite clear. They ministered, liberally, to his wants 
in his last illness; attended him reverently to his final 
resting-place ; buried him at their own cost ; took into 
immediate consideration the necessities of his widow and 
orphans ; and shewed their attachment to their pastor's 
memory by acts of mercy to his bereaved ones. Etei'iial 
honour to such benevolent and considerate churchmen! 
But ought he to have been left thus to struggle single- 
handed with poverty and disease? The dispensers of 
ecclesiastical patronage, where are they? His diocesan 
for instance? 

Had the Bishop of London no small benefice to bestow 
Upon this learned, laborious, and exemplary man? His 
lordship is understood to be the special patron of the 
working clergy. Lynam, surely, was one! Had the 
dean and chapter of St. Paul's no trifling benefice where- 
with to acknowledge — not reward — the acceptable and 
unremitting labours of the curate on one of the most 
considerable of their own livings? 

One item in the subscription list is singular enough. 
It must be a misprint. On no other pinciple can it he ex- 
plained. The vicarage of St. Giles's, Cripplegate, is one 
of "the Prizes in the Church." Its annual value, accord- 
ing to Parliamentary returns, exceeds two thousand 
POUNDS. On this living Mr. Lynam was curate for 
twelve years : the last twelve years of his life : in truth, 
exhausted and overburdened he died in serving it. In the 
subscription opened for the relief of his widow and 
orphans, opposite to the name of the incumbent, is 
placed a donation of five pounds ! Now, the printer's 
devil who made such an abominable mistake deserves a 
flagellation — a flagellation such as is inflicted in the 7th 
Hussars, under the hands of farriers, rising on their toes 
at every other stroke. No milder punishment will ex- 
piate such intolerable carelessness. What opinion does 


the little inky imp dare to entertain of the clergy of the 
Church of England, to suppose it probable that a gentle- 
man who holds a living, the annual receipts of which 
exceed two thousand pounds, and a canonry of St. Paul's 
to boot, would dream of giving to the distressed family 
of an exemplary curate, after twelve years' faithful ser- 
vice, a paltry sum of five pounds ! It's impossible ! — 
incredible! A gross misprint, beyond all question. And 
the true reading should be — for '•'-Jive jmu/uIs understand 


Did the clergy as a body co-operate, and have — as they 
easily might have — their own general super-annuitant 
fund, their own widows' purse, their own orphans' relief, 
or bounty board, the necessity for such pamful appeals 
would be superseded. 

The urgent need for these charities, each and all of 
them, is painfully felt: when will the policy of organiz- 
ing them be admitted and acted upon '( 

Turn from this to another curious case o+' ministerial 
vicissitude. It is extracted from the journal of a mission- 
ary in one of our Colonial dependencies ; and there is no 
ground for questioning its accuracy. 

" We followed to the grave yesterday, Charles W. 
Thompson, aged 29 years, foremast hand of the Panama, 
Captain Crowell. lie was the eldest son of Lieutenant- 
Colonel Thompson, late M.P. for Hull, who served under 
Wellington in the Peninsular war, and also at the battle 
of Waterloo. 

" He received the name of Charles William Byron, his 
mother being a second cousin of the poet. Lord Byron ; 
but he preferred to drop the name of Byron. 

''^ After graduating at Christ's College, Camhridge, he was 
ordained over a parish of the Church of England. Not 
being pleased with his situation there, and having con- 
scientious scruples about the connection of Church and 
State, his relation with his parish was dissolved. His 
father had then acquired land in the United States, and 
Charles, with his wife, was proceeding thither on business 
connected therewith, when the vessel, being driven by a 
strong current, and surrounded for many days with a 
thick fog, instead of reaching New York, was wrecked 
on the shore of Halifax. 

" His wife, in consequence of exposure, was thrown 


upon a bed of sickness, and about a month after expired. 
In consequence of loss from this wreck he was obliged, 
in order to prosecute his business, to return to England, 
and on his reaching America, the second time, was wrecked 
on Long Island. After forming acquaintances in the 
family of Mr. Vanfleet, of Hyde Park, in Duchess County, 
New York, he was again married. Plis second wife died 
in childbed, leaving him a little son, whom he left at 
Hyde Park, with his grand-parents ; thence proceeding 
south, on business, the vessel was run aground on the 
Jersey shore, which was the third time that this unfor- 
tunate man had been wrecked, where he lost his remain- 
ing all. Becoming now discouraged, he found his way to 
Sag Harbour, where his name was enrolled as a foremast 
hand for a whaling voyage in the Pacific. 

'• Though he says he had not lifted a fifty pound weight 
before in his life, he was now ready at every call, and by 
his prompt obedience ingratiated himself into the favour 
of his master and officers, and by his meek and obliging 
conduct into the good-will of all his companions. When- 
ever a dispute arose among the hands, they invariably 
looked on him to settle it. I found, on getting acquainted 
with him, that by his extensive travels in Europe and 
America, his retentive memory, his excellent address, and 
a command of language, he was a man qualified to please 
and interest the most intelligent circles. 

"January 28, at three o'clock, p.m., he entered our 
house apparently much fatigued, and requested the privi- 
lege of reclining. I shewed him a bed, where he soon 
sunk into a fit of apoplexy. Upon discovering his situa- 
tion. Dr. White, of the Majestic, was called, who attended 
upon him assiduously; but notwithstanding what could 
be done, his spirit departed that evening about eleven 

And then to crown the whole, one meets with an ad- 
vertisement like this, running the round of the morning 
and evening papers : — 

" The Kev. Thomas Harvey hereby acknowledges the 
kind sympathy of an 'Anonymous' friend, contained in a 
letter dated July 1, bearing the ' Liverpool ' post-mark, 
addressed to Mr. Harvey, enclosing a five-pound Bank 
OF England note, No. 00262, date April 26, 1845, 


towards relieving the heavy expenses incurred in defend- 
ing himself against the ruinous and oppressive usaee ol 

the Bishop of — — . 

" Margaretting Vicarage, July 6, 1846." 
All which is to a plain man perfectly incomprehensible. 



" lu a speech replete with feeling, the Duke of Sussex proposed the 
health of ' The Earl of Moira, the friend of his prince, the friend of his 
country, and the friend of mankind.' " — Keed's Progress of Masonry. 

It was a spirit-stirring scene when this emphatic toast 
was given. 

One of the most influential and unwearied supporters 
of Freemasonry in this country was about to bid the 
craft a reluctant adieu, and the body resolved to mark 
their sense of Lord Moira's past services by a public 
manifestation of attachment and regard. His lordship — 
then Marquis of Hastings, and on the eve of his depar- 
ture as viceroy of India — was invited to a banquet at 
which no less than five hundred Brethren were present, 
which men of all parties struggled to witness, and which 
included among the guests no less than five princes of the 
blood. Animated by one and the same object, the Dukes 
of York, Clarence, Cumberland, Kent, and Sussex, met 
to do honour to acknowledged worth. 

The gallery was crowded with the noble, the gentle- 
hearted, and the fair. A costly jewel, of matchless work- 
manship, was presented to the marquis, as a souvenir from 
his Brethren ; and amidst acclamations, long and loud, 
the Duke of Sussex gave the toast so well remembered 
and, in after-times, so frequently referred to. It was a 
proud day for the marquis ; and yet tinged in no incon- 
siderable degree with melancholy. After all, India to 
him was exile, gorgeous though it might prove. His 
might be the trappings of power — and the sweets of 
patronage — and the exercise of authority — but could 
these compensate for absence from the land he left behind 


him, and severance from the friends he saw around him ? 
But the 27th of January, 1813, is memorable in Ma- 
sonic annals, not merely as a day of festivity, or as a 
day in which the fraternity took leave — a grateful and 
appropriate leave — of a most accomplished brother — but 
as a day in which a brief but able exposition of masonic 
principles was given by one well skilled in masonic 

Lord Moira thus spoke : — 

" They^ share with us in the glowing confidence that 
the beneficence of a superintending Father perpetually 
shields us. They participate with us in that sure hope 
of the future which ]nakes our present existence appear 
but a speck in the immensity of our immortal heritage. 
They are assimilated to us in all the generous affections 
of that charity which tells us that kindness to all must he 
the ohlution most acceptable to him, who, in creating all, could 
have no motive hut their hajipinessJ''' 

And again : — 

" The prodigious extent of this society in England is 
little imagined by those who are not called upon to look 
to its numbers. Its perfect tranquillity attracts no atten- 
tion. That so vast a body should exist in such silence, 
and move with such invariable regularity, while it would 
appear to the casual observer that no eye watches, or 
hand directs its procedure, is the best proof of its rigid 
adherence to principles in their nature unalterably advan- 
tageous to society." 

Those whom these records of past triumphs interest, 
will not be averse to wile away a summer's noon by 
a saunter around Donnington — Lord Moira's ancestral 

The house is imposing. A park of some extent sur- 
rounds it ; and the carriage-drive to the hall is fringed 
on either side with noble pollard oaks. Behind the man- 
sion rolls the Trent, which here makes a very beautiful 
bend. Its ripple on a still day is discernible, and delight- 
fully soothing. The gardens, the library, the pictures 
had charms tor the more restless spirits of our party ; 
but to me the most pleasing object, on that glorious 
summer's eve, was the spectacle of the deer which were 

' The royal and illustrious personages present. 


browsing, in groups, under the trees in the park close to 
the house — graceful, fearless, and confiding. 

Oh ! there is no teacher so mighty and magnificent as 
nature! For what is the whole creation, earth, air, wa- 
ter, — the winds, — the waves, — the stars, — mankind, — 
the universe, — but an infinite being complete, premedi- 
tated, varied into inscrutable details, and breathing, and 
palpitating under the omnipresent hand of God? To 
this feeling one of the most gifted of her race^ did homage 
in one of the most exquisite sentiments ever traced by 
her versatile pen — " When at eve at the boundary of the 
landscape, the heavens appear to recline so closely on the 
earth, imagination pictures beyond the horizon an asylum 
of hope, a native land of love ; and nature seems silently to 
reyeat that man is immortal P^ 

A tolerably bold digression this from Donnington ! 
Thither, courteous reader, let us return ! 

The pictures are few in number : and as a collection 
not remarkable. But there are one or two among them 
which merit lengthened observation. In the dining- 
room hangs a portrait of " Oliver Cromwell." Before 
this successful effort of the limner the lover of art will 
pause delightedly. The expression of the countenance, 
and particularly of the eye, enchains attention. The 
longer the portrait is gazed on the more apparent is its 
excellence. What immovable determination about the 
mouth ! And what a sinister, yet hard expression has 
the painter transferred to that leaden eye ! Fixedness of 
purpose — cruelty — hatred — a spirit reckless of conse- 
quences — a heart insensible to the pleadings of mercy — 
— all live upon the canvas ! Eegicide and usurper ! He 
is limned to the life ! The murderer of his king ! The 
hypocrite towards his Grod ! Scan his features once 
more ! So stern, so resolute, so inhuman. Admirable 
deceiver! We can now conceive somewhat of that 
measureless ambition which the government of a realm 
could not satisfy ; and of that ferocity of character — that 
quenchlessi hatred — which not even the life-blood of his 
royal master could appease ! 

The other portrait — it hangs in the small drawing- 
room — is a picture of Nell Grwynne. 

2 Madame de Stael. 


The soft sleepy look of the eye — the beauty and deli- 
cacy of the hand — the expression of refined licentious- 
ness — all this is finely given. It is a beautiful picture. 
But after all it is the picture of a courtezan. And it is 
a profanation of art — whether statuary or painting — 
when its glorious mission is made subservient to the 
brutal purposes of lust. 

How difterent is Raphael's Madonna !^ , It is the beauty 
of a lowly being — the beauty of innocent thoughts — of 
hallowed lips — of modesty that grows in the still hamlet 
— of a heart pure, holy, truthful, and confiding. 

The library is a noble room, and crammed with books ; 
some of them of rare and curious editions. And here, be 
it observed, there is a picture of some mark. It is that 
of Compte d'Artois, afterwards Charles X. It hangs 
above the fire-place ; and we were told it was a gift 
from the royal personage it represents. 

Now it is no want of charity to assert of this elaborate, 
but laughter-moving picture, that it is essentially French. 
The idea is French. The colouring is French. The atti- 
tude is French. The bow is French. The self-compla- 
cent grin which the painter has contrived to fix on the 
features of this unfortunate Prince is French. Vive la 
bagatelle! What a diverting picture to look at on a 
gloomy day! The Compte d'Artois is supposed to be 
receiving the salutations of the National Guard. He is 
evidently full of esprit : in other words, uncommonly 
frisky. He is dressed in a light pea-green coat, and has 
a shred of white ribbon — the Bourbon emblem — dang- 
ling from his button-hole. His " chapeau" is in his hand, 
and he is perpetrating a bow. But what a bow ! A lit- 
tle girl in the party best described it. She laughed 
aloud, and cried : "Oh! how funny ! Wh'dt & hopj)y-kicky 
bow I" " Hoppy-kicky" or not, the attitude certainly is 
nondescript. It is something between the grimace of a 
finished petit maitre, and the flourish of a French dancing- 
master. The drollery of the whole affair is irresistible. 
Ha! Ha! Ha! 

But we still linger in the library. Books of varied 
merit, and in various tongues, are heaped around ; but in 
glancing at some dozen volumes, I was struck with the 

^ In the Bridgewater Gallery. 


predominance of presentation copies. Seven out of the 
thirteen were " from the author." Most of these were 
accompanied with some courteous and grateful expres- 
sion. It spoke much, methought, for the kindly and 
generous character of the receiver. 

Among these, one wretchedly bound and well-worn 
volume, from adventitious circumstances, possessed a 
degree of interest not intrinsically its own. It was a col- 
lection of speeches and pamphlets which had been called 
forth by the Union. Within its limits were to be found 
the passionate effusions of Flood and Barre. It had once 
belonged to Fox, and bore his autograph ; and had be- 
sides several marginal annotations in his own careless but 
peculiar scrawl. From his possession it appeared to 
have passed into the library of Marquis Wellesley, and 
was by him presented with a few graceful expressions of 
admiration and regard to Lord Moira. 

Methought it was rarely that upon the same fly-leaf 
three such autographs were to be read as those of 
"Charles James Fox," "Wellesley," and "Moira." 

But I must hasten on. 

That generous and confiding benevolence of character 
which had rallied around him so many firm adherents 
during life, was touchingly exhibited after death. In 
the necessary examination of his papers, letter after 
letter presented itself from parties whom his bounty 
had cheered ; his influence assisted ; or his prompt inter- 
vention raised from despair. The extent of his ready 
sympathy with soitow was known only when the grave 
had closed upon him. In his good deeds he had observed 
the Masonic virtue of silence. 

And yet after all his devotion to his prince — his pro- 
longed and frank hospitality to the exiled Bourbons — his 
unhesitating and undeviating loyalty in times of no com- 
mon difficulty — his many and costly sacrifices to main- 
tain the Prince of Wales's honour — he surrendered his 
last breath in what may be termed honourable exile. 
Did he in after-years ever recall this pithy passage in his 
parting address? 

" The illustrious chairman has praised me as the friend 
of the prince. Can I assume merit for my attachment 
when all the honour of such a connection through a 
length of years must have been bestowed upon me t If 


I had the happiness of being distinguished by such par- 
tiality, adherence was hut a slender return, thougli the only one 
I could maker 

Or was his sad but inevitable conclusion that so well 
expressed by Burton: "The attachments of mere mirth 
are but the shadows of that true friendship, of which the sin- 
cere affections of the heart are the substance." 

Failings he, probably, had : but who would wish to 
recall them ? 

Rather apply to him the acute remark of a popular 
writer: " The last triumph of disinterestedness is to for- 
get our own superiority in our sympathy, solicitude, ten- 
derness, respect, and self-denying zeal for those who are 
below us." 



" Yirtue and intelligence are the great interests of a community, in- 
cluding all others, and worth all others ; and the noblest agency is that 
by which they are advanced." — Dr. Chaxnixg. 

In some book or pamphlet, which I am ashamed to 
say, I have forgotten, a passage occurs mainly to this 
effect : — 

" Hope and imagination, the wings of the soul, carry- 
ing it forward and upward, languish in the poor ; for the 
future is uninviting. The darkness of the present broods 
over future years. The idea of a better lot almost fades 
from a poor man's mind. He ceases to hope for his chil- 
dren as well as for himself. Even parental love stag- 
nates through despair. Thus poverty starves rhe mind." 

The remark is just. Under the pressure of poverty 
both mind and body become degraded. No one can judge 
so accurately of what is actually endured by the poor 
man — of the many weights and hindrances laid on him 
which keep him poor — as those who live near him year 
after year, watch him closely ; stand by his sick-bed ; 
are privy to his manifold trials ; and witness how bravely 
he battles with that saddest union of all — poverty and 

No one — in a rural district — -pays so dearly for every 
article he consumes as the poor man ! 

No one has such scant measure dealt out to him — no 
one suffers so systematically from " false weights and 
deceitful balances" as the poor man. 

From no one is exacted a higher rate of interest than 
from the poor man. 

Let me fortify these assertions by proof. 


The poor man buys tlie common necessaries of life in 

Half an ounce of tea; a quarter of a pound of cheese ; 
half a quarter of a pound of butter ; such are the petty 
quantities which scanty means compel the poor man to 
purchase. ■ He can give no large order. It is beyond 
him. Now mark the result. He pays for his WTetched 
tea — sloe leaves the chief ingredient — tour-pence halfpenny 
an ounce, or at the rate of six shillings a pound. The 
rich man purchases drinkable tea for five. Again. For 
his scanty morsel of cheese — some quarter of a pound — 
the se)f pays three-pence; and for the like quantity of 
rancid butter foui-pencc. The rich man buys his cheese 
at nine-pence per pound, and his salt butter at a shilling 
But the poor man is not merely amerced — I still limit 
my remarks to rural districts, and rural "general dealers" 
— in point of price ; he is fleeced, and that abominably, 
in point of weight. 

1 once entered, to confirm or dissipate my suspicions, 
a shop of this description in a very poor distiict. I had 
heard it repeatedly described as "a very money-getting 
concern ;" and knew that within ten years two parties 
had retired from it in easy circumstances. It was a dark, 
gloomy den ; well and variously stocked ; and was scented 
with any thing but the fragrance of "Araby the blest." 
I was examining some coarse, thick garden gloves which 
were lying in a side window, when an aged, emaciated 
creature entered — a widow by her dress — and, with a 
lowiy curtsey and submissive voice, asked to be served 
with " half an ounce of good tea." The master was 
himself at the counter. 

" Oh ! ah ! we know what you want ; three-pence the half 
juncell" and as he spoke he seized a large grimy canister. 
Before, however, he weighed the article wanted, he put 
a square piece of thick, coarse, brown paper in one scale, 
and a half-ounce weight in the other, and then poured the 
tea upon the coarse, heavy paper. That told its own 
TALE ; and the miserable driblet which the widow was 
tendered for her three-pence may be imagined. 

At this stage of the proceedings I ventured to interfere. 

"You can never call that just weight. It is not half 
an ounce of tea ; you must re-weigh it ; and before you 
do so take out the paper." 


'•I have weighed that tea as I weigh goods in general, 
and for every body," said he, doggedly and angrily; 
" and I shall make no alteration." 

" But see you not the injustice of the practice ? This 
poor woman loses the weight of that thick, brown paper 
in her halt-ounce of tea. There ought not to be any 
paper at all in the scale. If there be, you wrong the 

Further reply to me the general dealer vouchsafed 
not. But, turning with a furious glance to his customer, 
he exclamed — " Come ! no bother ! Take it or leave it !'' 

" It must be as the gentleman pleases," said the poor 
reature, submissively ; and, grasping her tea, tottered 
feebly away. 

While I was apparently examining the gloves, but in 
ireality pondering over in my mind what was the next 
advisable step to take, a young woman with an infant in 
her arms entered the shop. She wanted " a little flour, 
and half a pound of currants to make a plum bun for a 
sick child." 

The next move was bolder. 

Near the '• general dealer" stood a loaf of white sugar 
just unpacked. Than the blue paper which had formed 
a casing for it none could well be thicker, coarser, or 
heavier. The latter quality was a valuable recommenda- 
tion in that dark den of robbery and fraud. Twisting 
oft' a huge strip from the blue mass beside him, the 
knavish owner c[uickly placed it in the bottom of one 
scale, poured the currants upon it, and then weighed 
them to a nicety. 

Once more I ventured to expostulate. 

"Mr. Gregory" — I speak of him under that name — 
" you are not giving this poor creature weight ; and you 
know it." 

"How so, Sir? I never knew a customer of mine 
that had not weight ; and good weight, too!" 

"Can you maintain that assertion in this instance? 
Look at the paper in which those currants were weigh- 

"Would you have me weigh them without paper?" 
said he, pertly ; "I'm no gentleman ; I don't profess to 
be one ; but I should call that a very dirty way of doing 


"It is the just, legal, and fair mode; the other is 

"My customers. Sir, who are, for the most part, par- 
ticular, wouldn't stand it." 

"We will pat it to this one. Would you prefer" — 
and I turned to the trembling being at the counter, who 
had listened eagerly to all that passed — " having your 
goods weighed out to you in the bare scale, or having 

"Oh!" cried the knave, preventing and anticipating 
her reply — " I allow none to pick and choose here. The 
rule of my shop is to weigh every thing in paper; and I 
will depart from it for no one. Now, mistress, yours or 
mine? Be quick: I'm busy!" 

" Refuse his goods," said I, earnestly ; " refuse them 
and go elsewhere." 

" I cannot, Sir," said she, despondingly, " I cannot ; 
Tm a hooker!'''' 

I understood afterwards, though not then, the bondage 
which those words implied. Gregory grinned malici- 
ously when his victim uttered them ; and again, when 
hanging her head she slunk silently and stealthily away. 

I paid for my leathern mittens — not, I confess, with 
the best possible grace or in the best possible humour — 
and as I walked homewards resolved on showing up this 
system elsewhere. 

Within the week 1 made my way to the inspector of 
weights and measures ; told him what I had witnessed ; 
and requested his interference. The man in office looked 
starch and prim ; then hemmed and hawed a good deal ; 
and, at last, observed : — "Mr. Gregory is a thriving, nay, 
a wealthy man ; I have examined more than once his 
weights and measures ; he produces them readily; and 
I have always found them correct!" 

" But you cannot sanction his present mode of carrying 
on business ; you must feel that he deserves exposure, 
and the poor redress." 

He paused for a moment, then looked up quickly, and 
emarked : — 

" Pray, Sir, did you buy any article of him in which 
either measure or weight was concerned? 

"I did not." 

"Did any purchaser in your hearing complain?" 



*' Then I cannot interfere." 


" I have no grounds to go upon !" 

" And you think wholesale robbery like Gregory's 
should receive no check?" 

" Quite the contrary ; it is barefaced — shocking — ^base, 
and should unquestionably be put down." 

" By whom? Name the party able or empowered so 
to do, and no difficulty — no distance shall deter me from 
seeking him." 

" I should say," said the inspector, in a tone of pique, 
evidently vexed at my pertinacity ; " I should say it is a 
case for the neighbouring magistrate, Mr. Pape." 

" Enough. I will see him to-morrow !" 

Mr. Pape — the nearest magistrate! — lived about seven 
miles oft'. To reach his domicile you had to ford a morass 
almost impassable in winter ; or to flounder through the 
sands of a badly-constructed road, in the ruts of which 
a fullgrown man might safely take up his last resting- 
place any day in summer. He was a country gentleman 
who farmed his own estate ; and had his peculiar likings 
and distastes. He liked an easy chair, old port, leisure, 
cigars, fly-fishing in May ; the moors in August ; phea- 
sant-shooting in October ; and a sharp burst with the 
hounds any morning in November. These were his 
likings. His distastes were as decided. He detested 
business; abhorred writing; eschewed reading; hated 
being obliged to play the listener to any statement, how- 
ever brief; or to consult " The Magistrate's Vade 
Mecum," or "Every Man his own Lawyer," for any 
purpose, however urgent. His constant inquiry ran — 
" Why upon earth can't people live in peace?" 

Mr. Pape had just despatched an early breakfast when 
I rode up to his door, sent in my card, and begged to 
" see him on magisterial business." No interruption 
could have been less opportune. The month was Octo- 
ber : the morning bright and cheering. The dogs were 
at the door, and the keeper in attendance. Mr. Pape had 
donned his sporting costume, and was on the very eve of 
starting in tip-top spirits for a distant and most promis- 
ing covert. I won't attempt to define where at that 


moment he wislied me, and her Majesty's commission, 
and his magisterial qualifications ! 

He entered the study with " unwilling step and slow," 
and in a most glorious fume. 

"Business? of a magisterial nature, I understood? — 
aye, exactly! Why, in the devil's name, cannot people 
live in peace? What demon induces them to be eter- 
nally at war? Squabble, squabble, squabble! — folks 
grow, methinks, more tetchy, perverse, and wayward 
every day ! My watchword is peace. All I covet is 
peace. All I sought in burying myself in this obscure 
and retired corner of the county was peace. The only 
boon I crave on earth is peace. Yet strife and uproar 
rage around me ; and, as surely as aught disagreeable 
occurs in this district, so surely am I compelled to deal 
with it. You'll require a summons, probably? Haven't 
one left ! Rattle"^this was the pointer— "tore up the 
last this morning. And now, Sir, what annoyance, tres- 
pass, discomfort, loss, or injury brings you hither?" 

I briefly explained the nature of my errand. Long 
before I closed, he gazed wistfully out of the window, 
and then burst forth impatiently : — 

" Good Heavens, Sir, you can't be serious ! Yon surely 
don't expect 7ne to interfere in a matter of this nature? 
This is purely a question for the inspector of weights and 
measures. By all means apply to him." 

I watched my opportunity, and struck in : — 

" I have. He declared himself powerless, and advised 
my seeking redress from you." 

. "There it is! That's the very word ! The term which 
I have daily dinned into my ears till it threatens to drive 
me into a mad-house. ' Redress !' ' Redress !' Why can't 
people live in peace, and then they would need no redress ? 
/ can't help you : go to the inspector." 

" He bade me come to you." 

" Oh, he did — did he ? I'll make a memorandum of 
his officiousness, in the hope that in one shape or other 
I shall be able to return his civility. And now. Sir, pray 
be satisfied with my reply — 1 cannot aid you.'''' 

" Who can ?" 

"I should say the inspector. Weights and measures 
are his province : repeat that to him from me." 


" I fear it will be unavailing." 

'''■Then be at peace.'''' 

I stared at him somewhat wildly. He took my look 
for dissent and disapprobation ; and, without giving me 
an opportunity for comment, continued : — 

" Oh, yes ! I'm quite aware of it. No advice more 
unpalatable ! There never was such a contentious, ill- 
conditioned, quarrelsome, litigious crew as that which 
inhabits this district. Why harass me?" Again he 
gazed wistfully from the window, and his face grew 
darker. " Such a glorious morning !" he murmured, 
" and the dogs in such condition !" Then, in a louder 
key, "I repeat, why harass me? You have the remedy 
in your own hands." 

"May I ask how?" 

" If Grregory, as you affirm — and I doubt it not — cheats 
as to weight and measure, tell the poor to cut his shop 
and seek another." 

" It is the only general shop within four miles." 

" Then start an opposition." 

" That has been tried ; and unsuccessfully." 

"In what way?" 

" In two instances parties have come forward, stocked 
a small shop, and commenced business, avowedly to op- 
pose this unjust and unscrupulous man. Instantly he 
has lowered his prices, and undersold them ; has, in fact, 
beaten them off the field, and ruined them. He exults 
in this. He declares that in this district he will have no 
competitor. You do not suffer from this policy, Mr. Pape, 
nor do I ; but the poor do, and most severely." 

" Then let them submit, and be at peace. You will 
do this neighbourhood great service if you will constantly 
preach peace to the poor. I will send you a little 
American work on this subject. It is written by the 
Reverend Noah Worcester. He lived to a great age — 
seventy-five, I believe. He wrote three or four books 
every year of his life. But every one of them upon the 
self-same subject — peace!" 

Again I stared. 

" It is true, I assure you. I wish we had had him in 
this neighbourhood. What a glorious morning ! Do you 
shoot?" . /, • 



"Dear me ! you must find the country deplorably 
dull ; my keeper and dogs — " 

" But as to this man Gregory ?" said I, interrupting 

" Oh ! I can say no more about him ; I cannot act ; 
and the inspector, it seems, will not." 

"What, then. Sir, do you advise?" 

" Oh, think no more about it, and live in peace !' 

Further conference was useless. The justice grew, 
inomentarily, more fidgety ; the dogs more impatient, and 
the birds more shy. I made my bow, and retired. To 
battle with constituted authorities is an unequal and 
thankless warfare. I could not, however, " forget the 
subject," or Mr. Pape's mode of dealing with it. But 
Gregory was secure ; he battened, unmolested, upon his 
gains ; and for aught I know to the contrary, wrings, to 
this hour, an enormous and infamous profit from the 
bowels of the poor. 

And now as to the '• hooker.'''' 

Determined to master the system in all its villany, I 
succeeded, by dint of inquiry, in ascertaing the exaction 
and extortion by means of which such men as Gregory, 
even in the poorest neighbourhoods, and from the most 
wretched population, rapidly attain independence. I 
found "booker" to be, as I suspected, equivalent to 
debtor ; and that whenever a peasant, from his master's 
forgetfulness or inability to pay his labourers their 
weekly wages on the Saturday night, or from the visitation 
of sickness in the labourer's family, or from disease or 
accident disabling himself from toil, or from severe 
weather suspending farming operations, or from the 
operation of all or any one of these contingencies, is 
obliged to procure from the shop his weekly supply of 
necessaries on credit and not for cash, he instantly be- 
comes a '■'■ hooker r'' Thenceforth, poor wretch! he has 
to battle with usury as well as penury ! The general 
dealer afiects to call booking a privilege — to his wretch- 
ed dupes the indulgence is ruin. The charge ranges 
from 12 to 15 per cent., and is rarely under 10. Two 
accounts, from the circumstance of a sudden death, I had 
an opportunity of analyzing. The amount of one was 
nineteen shillings and eight-pence. In this document three 
shillings and eleven-pence were modestly charged for 


booking ! The sum total of the other was <£2. 3s. In 
this seven shillings and two-pence were demanded for 
booking. The " privilege" was set down week after 
week as a regular item. It appeared as systematically 
and formally as the charge for tea, or soap, or candles, 
or colFee. It was assumed to be a fair and recognised 
demand, though inserted, I thought, somewhat ad libitum. 
" Booking" two-pence ; " booking" five-pence ; " book- 
ing" three-pence ; " booking" seven-pence ; and so on 
to the close of the account. 

Once " a booker," the poor man must submit to what- 
ever scant measv7-e, or shoi't weight, or barefaced tricliery the 
general dealer chooses to inflict on him. He is no longer 
a free man. He is in bondage ; and to the sternest, most 
unscrupulous, and most exacting of masters. 

Ketreat is impossible ; rescue all but hopeless. 

And then thoughtless and inconsiderate men talk of 
the improvidence, and waste, and want of economy in 
the poor, and wonder how it comes to pass that Grego- 
rys grow rich; and how the English peasant closes a 
long and laborious life, crippled with rheumatism, amid 
the comforts (!) of a union workhouse ! 

That the exactions complained of are not confined to 
any particular locality may be gathered from the follow- 
ing incident. An invalid baronet, now deceased, took 
up, some three or four years since, his temporary sojourn 
in a village in one of the eastern counties. There, as 
elsewhere, he was a considerate and generous friend to 
the labourer ; made himself master of his circumstances ; 
entered into all his little difficulties ; and though a con- 
firmed invalid himself, disproved by his practice the 
adage that " sickness makes us selfish ;" he forgot, in 
fact, his own ailments in ministering to the sorrows and 
privations of those around him. Careful investigation 
convinced him that several families in the village — and 
those maintaining the best character — were engaged in 
a hopeless struggle to pay off a debt due to a neigh- 
bouring huckster ; a debt which paralyzed every effort 
■which their industry could make, and was slowly but 
surely bringing them down to pauperism and the work- 
house. Discerning as well as compassionate, he did not 
think it judicious at once to discharge the obligations of 
these parties, from an apprehension of being beset by 


applications from others labouring under similar difficul- 
ties, but who could not boast of the same good character. 
For a period, then, the generous baronet was passive. 
But after he had left the parish, and after all connection 
between him and it had apparently ceased, he remitted 
a sum— ^fifty pounds, I think — to the curate, with direc- 
tions to expend it as far as it would go, in releasing cer- 
tain parties from their difficulties. 

The curate, judicious and thoughtful on his part, 
imagined that this welcome largess opened out to him a 
prospect of great usefulness ; that the sum might be 
spread over a vast surface; and release from thraldom 
many an aching and anxious heart among his flock. He 
made out a list of debts and debtors : he found several 
>f the items — to use the mildest phrase — equivocal; and 
he boldly offered to the principal creditors — two neigh- 
bouring shopkeepers — immediate payment of their claims 
on John Brown, and Thomas Jones, and Philip Creed, 
and Job Stubbs, and a dozen other equally euphonious 
and unfortunate debtors, provided they — the said general 
dealers — would accept ten sMllings in the poimd! The out- 
cry they raised was wonderful ! They actually talked 
of "conscience ;" and vowed they "had lost money every 
year that they had been in business." They declared their 
" annual profits would not keep them in shoe-leather." 
How, amidst all this, they managed to buy fields, and 
build houses, and bet at races, and run splash dog-carts, 
were points they did not stop to explain. They profess- 
ed themselves " surprised and shocked that such a propo- 
sal had been made to them." " How were they," they 
inquired, "to meet their engagements if their debtors 
paid them ten shillings in the pound ?" They considered 
the offer — "an insult" — a "direct and positive insult!" 
It was "an attack upon their character :" and as such 
they "resented" it. 

The curate observed, very quietly, that the offer was 
not made in the light of an insult but of a benefit : was 
sorry his object had been misconstrued ; and that there 
was an end of the matter. 

Before the week ended the parties came to the clergy- 
man, and told him that, " purely out of respect for him, 
— purely to show their good opinion of him," — they 
would accept his proposal. 


The money was paid, and receipts given. As they left 
one of them observed to the other — " No bad job: even 
as it is, a ten per cent, stroke of business I take it." 

How much '■'■ booking'^ was included in these notable 
accounts I could never learn. The parish was not mine , 
nor had I access to the relieved parties. 

The evil, then, being admitted, whence is to arise the 
remedy ? 

Is the suggestion rash or inopportune, that there 
should be in every poor-law union an ofticer entitled " the 
Poor Man's Protector," having as his care the poor man's 
interests; and for his special mission this result — that 
just measure and full weight be meted out to the poor 
man in those petty shops — particularly in rural districts 
— where the poor man deals? 

It may be answered that " the local magistracy is the 
poor man's protector : he needs no other." 

That the local magistrates are, in the main, a most 
valuable body — that the services they render their coun- 
try are continuous and important — that their decisions 
are, with rare exceptions, merciful — few will deny. 

But they are compelled to administer the law as they 
find it. They are tied to an equitable discharge of their 
responsible functions without respect of persons. Sta- 
tutes fetter them. Precedents bind them. 

Something more than this is required for the poor 
man. He needs an advocate. He requires a protector. 

If it be objected that the evil is petty ; affects only a 
class; is not worthy the attention of government; must 
be left to provide its owm remedy — I reply, that of go- 
vernment the great- end is to secure freedom: but its 
proper and highest function, is to watch over the interests 
of EACH AND ALL, and to Open to a community the 
widest" field for the happiness of all. 

If the class I am contending for, constitute the objec- 
tion, then I must call in another authority. 

" Kindness to the poor," writes the learned and excel- 
lent Isaac Barrow, "doth in good part constitute a man 
pious, and signally declareth him such ; is a necessary 
ingredient of his piety, and a conspicuous mark thereof." 

Woe to that nation which regards poverty as criminal, 
andtreatsit accordingly ; which does not mitigate its pains, 
but strives, impiously, to "put it down" altogether. 



" Live a life of faith and hope. Believe in God's great purposes 
towards the human race. Believe in the mighty power of truth and 
love. Believe in the capacities and greatness of human nature. Carry 
to your work a trustful spirit. Do not waste your breath in wailing over 
the times. Strive to make them better. Do not be disheartened by evils. 
Feel through your whole soul that evil is not the mightiest power in the 
universe, that it is permitted only to call forth the energy of love, wisdom, 
persuasion and prayer for its removal. Understand that this is the great- 
est power which God gives to man — the power of acting generously on 
the soul of his brother ; of communicating to others a divine spirit, of 
awakening in others a heavenly light, which is to outlive the stars." — 
Essay on Catholicism. 

It is a remark frequently hazarded about Masonry — 
sometimes in a friendly and at others in a hostile spirit — 
that the body, as a body, effects nothing ; that its influ- 
ence is unfelt — unseen ; that in a social, civil, and com- 
mercial sense it is a non-entity ! 

Is the accusation true or false? 

Of the numerical strength of the Society of Freema- 
sons in this country they only can form a just idea who 
have access to its records. 

In fact, the tranquillity of the order, the regularity 
of all its movements, the ease and quietude v^ith vs^hich 
it is regulated, veil from the many its hidden strength. 

But may not inaction be carried too far ? May not 
quiescence pass into indifference ? And the accusation of 
being a slothful servant, who, "buried his talent in a 
napkin," apply collectively as well as singly? — to Bodies 
and Associations as well as to distinct and isolated indi- 
viduals ? 

Was man ever designed by the great Architect of the 
Universe to be a passive being ? Was he not formed to 


be progressive — always pressing forward in the pursuit 
of knowledge, and earnest in the discovery and dissemi- 
nation of good ? Have we not studied the principles of 
our craft well and gained some little insight into its bene- 
ficent tendency, when we are incited by it to a more 
grateful, cheerful love of God, and a serener, gentler 
nobler love of our fellow-creatures? 

Am I approaching perilous ground? Then it behoves- 
me to fortify my position by the researches of others. 

In that honest, fearless, and faithful organ of our body 
— The Freeviasons^ Qtiarterly JRevicw — I read : — 

" We know, amongst the guides which have led on the 
human race from the semi-barbarism of the middle ages, 
to the refinements of the present time, architecture has a 
place ; and it has been so much the more a trustworthy 
guide, because all its noblest aspirations have been 
devoted to the service of Him who is the Great Archi- 
tect of the Universe. In his works we read his wisdom, 
his power, and his benevolence ; in His temples made by 
men's hands, we read the piety and devotion of souls 
which HE has warmed with his love, and enlightened 
with HIS fire to do him honour. These men were our 
founders. On us has fallen the task, however faintly and 
inadequately we perform it, to shadow out their past his- 
tory, and never let us forget the duty which we owe to 
their fame and their memory." 

The end of Masonry is not festivity. It has far 
higher and nobler aims. Its legitimate object is to 
benefit and bless mankind. 

May not, then, the quiet but wide-spread influence of 
the body be justifiably exerted in doi??g away with some 
" social evil, or conferring some definite social hcnefit ? 

Any resuft bordering on, or connected with, political 
or party views, the Mason cheerfully foregoes. 

Any victory which involves religious controversy, or 
the conflict of antagonistic principles, the Mason deems 
too dearly purchased. But nothing does he consider 
alien to him which teaches his fellow-man to have a 
quenchless faith in a higher presence than meets the eye 
to cherish a feeling of God's existence, not only arouir.d 
us, but in the very depths of the soul — to aim at and 
struggle after faithfulness to principle, fearlessness in 
duty, and delight in the good and the true. 


The line of policy humbly suggested is, that a general 
and individual effort should be made to procure — 

1. The abolition of the legacy-duty on charitable bequests. 

Nothing but the exigencies entailed by an exhausting 
war could have justified the enactment of an imposition 
so arbitrary and unjust as the legacy-tax. " It is beneath 
the dignity of a great state," was Burke's indignant ex- 
clamation, " to stand by the dying and vs^atch, like a vul- 
ture, the expiring breath." Now, if this be true of the 
impost generally, it applies with tenfold force when its 
operation affects charitable bequests. 

It matters not to the argument that legacies for pious 
and benevolent uses occasionally originate in question- 
able motives. 

" Who art thou that judgest another? To his own master 
he standeth or fallethP'' 

The clergy could say something on this head. Their 
experience by the bed of the sick and the dying would 
warrant their drawing some conclusion. But they wisely 
abstain. The Infinite alone can rightly estimate motives! 
But these why seek to impugn ? Why attribute to a 
dark and troubled source that stream of bounty which, 
in its after-current, will he so beneficial to others? A 
rich man, who has been all his life grasping and hard- 
hearted, is laid on the bed of sickness, which threatens 
ere long to become the bed of death. He has leisure to 
think. His situation is new to him. His bodily sufffer- 
ings tell upon his long-cherished prejudices and previous 
conclusions. They shake the first, and modify the last. 
He begins to understand how sad their case must be, 
where poverty and disease are united. As a proof that 
his impressions are altered — not from a persuasion that 
his alms can unclose for him the gates of Heaven — he 
adds a codicil to his will, and bequeaths five hundred 
pounds towards " building a new wing to an over-crowd- 
ed hospital." 

That is the testator'' s avowed aim and object. 

The State steps in. 

The State says : " We don't care whether or no a ra- 
pidly increasing population renders an increase of accom- 
modation in Hasketon Infirmary indispensable ; we are 
IDdifierent as to whether a new wing be built or not ; to 
us it is perfectly immaterial what the testator's intentions 


were; we suspect, indeed, that you will require the 
whole of the sura bequeathed you if his project is to be 
carried out — and that you will be obliged to forego it if 
any deduction be made, but tliat is your affair, not ours ; 
the State, as a State, knows nothing about philanthropy 
— so hand us over at once £50 {i. e. ten per cent, on the 
bequest), and then do as you will with the remainder — 
build or let it alone !" 

Now, unquestionably, government is a great good, and 
essential to human happiness; but, may it not also be 
contended, that that alone is government which represses 
injustice and crime, secures iiro^jerty from invasion, and re- 
spects the intentions of the dead? Burke's remark is bold 
and apposite : " In doing good we are generally cold, and 
languid, and sluggish ; and of all things afraid of being 
too much in the right. But the works of malice and in- 
justice are quite in another style. They are finished 
with a bold masterly hand ; touched as they are with the 
spirit of those vehement passions that call forth all our 
energies whenever we oppress and persecute," 

Take another case. 

A man has lived for years the slave of passion. His 
desires have been the governing impulses of his existence. 
In gratifying them the pleadings of youth, innocence, 
helplessness, dependence, never obtained a hearing. The 
demon of lust ruled. The brute propensities of the ani- 
mal were dominant. The self-restraint which should cha- 
racterize THE MAN, and the conviction of future respon- 
sibility which should impress and awe the Christian, 
slept. Life ebbs away. The wild tumult of lawless 
passion is about being hushed in the grave. Remorse- 
stricken at the past; conscious of the wretched purposes 
to which existence has been devoted ; and sensible of the 
misery and wretchedness which he has caused in various 
relations of life ; he resolves, as the only atonement he 
can make to society — not a sufficient or availing one — to 
leave the wreck of his property, some two hundred 
pounds, to a neighbouring penitentiary. He has ascer- 
tained it to be in difficulties, and he wishes to free it wholly 
from embarrassment. 

The testator dies, and the will is proved. In steps 
the legacy comptroller. 

"I must trouble you, for twenty pounds legacy duty," 


cries that functionary, " on the bequest to Langport 

" But the benefaction," it is urged, " is for charitable 

"Immaterial! The duty due to the crown is <£20. 
Pay it, or abide the consequences." 

"If we pay it, the intentions of the deceased will be 

" We have nothing to do here with intentions,'''' remarks 
the comptroller, " we have only to do with acts." 

" But listen," persist the executors ; " the deceased 
party left to our penitentiary .£200 to release it from 
existing difficulties ; that sum will do so effectually : but 
the balance, £180 — supposing the legacy to be paid — 
will not." 

"Then the testator," remarks the comptroller, drily, 
" should have remembered his duty to the crown, and 
have left his legacy duty free.'' ^ 

" But he left the institution all he had,'''' exclaim the 
executors, in a breath. 

" Then he should have been thrifty, and amassed 
more," is the comptroller's quiet rejoinder; "however, 
my business is to receive money, not to exhaust the 
morning in argument. Do you pay, or do you not pay?" 

Take another case. 

A destitute orphan boy receives his education in one of 
our national charities — charities which are speaking 
monuments of the piety, beneficence, and disinterested- 
ness of our forefathers. His orderly conduct attracts 
iattention ; and at a proper age he is bound apprentice 
by the governors. The habits of industry and activity 
which had distinguished his early life cleave to him in 
manhood, and bear, with God's blessing, abundant fruit. 
The Great Supreme smiles upon his honesty and assi- 
duity ; and in the evening of life, leisure and independ- 
ence await him. In making a final disposition of his 
property, the recollection of his early struggles and early 
obligations recurs. 

" I will not leave this world " — thus he reasons — 
" without testifying, in a tangible form, my gratitude to 
that noble institution which nurtured me when I was a 
poor boy — educated me, and started me in life. Others 
equally necessitous will rise up after me. The charity 


shall have the residue of my property. It will amount to 
some £250, and thus enable the governors to repeat 
towards some other poor orphan the merciful and con- 
siderate part they displayed towards me." 

Thus the thoughtful man ruminates; and thus the 
grateful man acts. Life's fitful scene ere long closes. 
The necessary forms are gone through. On investigation, 
the residuary bequest foils short of what was anticipated; 
and the executors' chagrin at the result is not lessened by 
a prompt demand from the legacy-office people : 

" Ten per cent., gentlemen, ten per cent., without 
delay, on the residuary estate!" 

It is submitted, somewhat hopelessly, that this bequest 
"originated in the deceased's gratitude to the charity 
which had rescued him from ignorance and want ; and 
was intended to benefit some other being similarly 

"That we have nothing to do with t ten per cent, is 
our claim and right upon the residue, which you have 
sworn to be under £120." 

" True : but gratitude " 

" Fiddlestick's end about gratitude ! "We've nothing 
to do with that here : pay your percentage upon the 
residue, and bid us good morning as soon as you please." 

" But this bequest is to benefit a charitable institution 
of admitted excellence" 

" All moonshine ! Language fit for a minor theatre : 
not for the legacy department of Somerset House: pay 
at once, or our solicitor shall receive instructions." 

A cheque is given, and the executors withdraw. 

But it is a wretched system ! The enactment itself is 
unjust: its operation most injurious. 

1. Its obvious tendency is to defeat the intentions of 
the testator. 

2. It injures those — the widow, the orphan, the 
afflicted, and the sorrow-stricken — beings whom a govern- 
ment is bound specially to protect. 

3. It inflicts injury upon a class which cannot complain 
— the helpless and dependent. 

4. It obstructs the flow of Christian benevolence. 

5. It contravenes, in its operation, the solemn warning 
of The Most Hi&h: — " iZe thai opprcsseth the poor, re- 
•proacheth his Maker. ''^ 


Masons! against such a rampart of robbery and injus- 
tice fling the first stone. In your iiidividual capacity 
declare against it. A miglity energy is yours. In the 
saored cause of charity be not slow to exert it! 

II. The cause of morality might be materially advanced 
if the influence of the order were brought to bear ujion 
the reform of the law with reference to adultery. Society 
suffers under no greater calamity than the toleration of 
this monster evil, and the reparation which the law at 
present awards. The wealthy roue triumphs! What 
to him is a verdict amercing him in damages to the extent 
of five hundred or a thousand guineas '? He tenders, with 
a sneer, a cheque on his banker. 

He has gained his object. He has gratified his passions. 
He has ruined the peace of an entire family. He has 
dishonoured a hitherto spotless line. He has rendered 
some youthful and innocent beings motherless. The 
sons can never hear again their mother's name without 
the flush of shame. The daughters must shun her as a 
tainted and polluted being. He has degraded the one 
and blasted the fair prospects of the other. And the 
penalty is paid by the wrong-doer in — money! ! 

He returns in triumph to his fellows. He has gained 
an enviable notoriety. He is a man of bonnes fortunes. 
His name is up in the annals of crim. con. His associates 
pronounce him " a fine, daring, dashing, fellow : only 
rather wildP^ 

But his victim — where is she ? What epithet is applied to 
her ? 

Now, let money be no longer omnipotent in wrongs of 
this description. It can do a great deal. But let it cease 
to gild infatny. Let the adulterer pay the penalty of his 
crime in person. Let his punishment be imprisonrneiit 
and hard labour! In a flagrant and aggravated case, 
where no common arts have been used, and no common 
stratagems exerted, let a visit to a penal settlement for 
some five or seven years reward the scheming of the law- 
less voluptuary. Let this be done, and our public records 
would be less frequently crowded with details of infamy. 
The experiment may seem severe ; but its results would 
be salutaiy. It would soon be proved that the wealthy 
seducer, if he had no regaid for the peace and comfort of 
others, had a most tender care for his own ! 


Eut, at present, money is to atone for crime ! It is 
tendered as an equivalent for infamy! 

Such a system is an insult to the right-thinking and 
the virtuous. The time for its fall, I trust, is coming. 
It cannot fall too soon. It has long enough v^arred with 
the behests of the Most High and the plainest dictates of 
reason. It has long enough mocked the holiest feelings 
of our nature. It has long enough caused the pure- 
minded and the gentle-hearted to sigh. It has long 
enough shielded the selfish voluptuary and w^rung v^ith 
agony the heart of the deserted and the betrayed. Let 
its end come. It cannot come too soon. 

III. Another point on which the influence of the order 
might be safely exerted is-^the health of the working 

The rage for adding field to field and house to house 
has miserably curtailed the personal freedom of the poor. 
Where are the open spaces in which, aforetime, the saucy 
school-boy used to fly his kite ; and the rollicking appren- 
tice to urge on his resounding game of football ; and the 
town bachelors to pitch their wickets for a cricket-match ; 
and the wearied artisan to pace slowly round in the glo- 
rious tv^ilight of a summer's eve, and forget the while the 
hard words, and cares, and strife, of the closing day ? 

Bought ; parcelled out ; built upon ; gone ! 

The village green ; and the bit of breezy common ; and 
the three-cornered town meadow; and the 'prentice-jaoy's 
pasture — have disappeared. 

Speculators have made advantageous bids for them. 
Trustees and feoffees have most disinterestedly conveyed 
them. To the working man they exist no longer. Who 
is the sufferer? He. 

To the open spaces, which were always few and far 
between, the poor, after their day's toil, cannot 7201^; resort. 
None are to he found. In cities where wealth is in the 
ascendant the project is to banish poverty from view. 
When affluence usurps the surface, penury is compelled 
to burrow in the earth. Space is too costly a luxury. 
Square feet are sold for guineas. In alleys, or cellars, or 
squalid holes, where miserable wretches breed and cling 
together like bats in unfrequented vaults, there tlie leaven 
of sickness and contagion never ceases to work. From 


such places the artisan turns out for better air. TlHwre 
is he permitted to seek it ? 

Is it alien, then, to the Mason's creed, or is it out of 
keeping with that benevolence which should mark his 
practice, that he use every legitimate means, through his 
representative, to obtain this boon from government for 
the poorer classes — that in every town where the popu- 
lation amounts to 10,000 and upwards, a proportionate 
space shall be set apart and preserved, where, after the 
toil of the day is over, the artisan may stretch his cramped 
and aching limbs ; breathe the fresh air of heaven ; enjoy 
unrestrained exercise ; and brace himself in that atmo- 
sphere which God has so lavishly provided — which is the 
first and last food of man — and which it is the bounden 
duty of every constitutional government to preserve, free 
and uncontaminated, for the labourer and the toil-worn? 

It is the true policy of the order— 

IV. To procure sohie recognition of the claims oj the indus- 
trious and deserving poor. 

In the poor-law as at present administered — a law, be 
it observed, which is a disgrace to us as men and a reproach 
to us as Christians — no distinction is made between the 
vicious and the deserving. Previous good character is 
of no avail within the walls of a union work-house. The 
man who has been brought there by his own misconduct, 
by dissolute courses, by intemperance, or by idleness, is 
put side by side with the man whom sickness, or an 
unforeseen accident, or unavoidable misfortune has re- 
duced to penury. They fare alike; are coerced alike; 
are imprisoned alike-. With the female inmate the same 
wretched regulation obtains. The beldame who, soured 
by want of her daily stimulus, gin — stung by recollections 
of the past — and without hope to gild the future, sits 
and curses by the half-hour together, has for her com- 
panion, and most unwilling auditor, an aged, desolate, 
faded being — ^one who has known better days ; been 
decently brought up ; who remembers the lessons of her 
childhood and can recall the promises of her God ; and 
who in the very depths and degradation of her poverty 
looks hopefully to the future, and is aiming at a better 
and brighter world. Does she deserve such an associate? 

The Book of Life tells us that the poor are left to us 
as especial charges by a wise and. bounteous Providence 


— that to forget the poor is to disobey the command of 
The Most High, and to forfeit all hope of his mercy. 

The Great Supreme says: — 

"For the poor shall never cease out of the land : there- 
fore I do conjmand thee, saying, thou shalt open thine hand 
WIDE unto thy brother, to thy poor, and to thy needy in 
thy land." 

But man says, "Poverty is criminal, and is to be treated 

The fact cannot be denied. Look at the institutions 
we have raised, not so much to mitigate its pains as " to 
put it down" altogether. Look at the buildings in which 
it is housed. Look at the food with which it is kept 
alive. Look at the officials by whom it is surrounded. 
Observe the sternness with which its pleadings are 
silenced; and the frightful disclosures which — as in the 
Andover case — are from time to time made, of its disci- 
pline and severities. Woe to us as a nation if we be 
content to rest our claims to godliness upon the fact of 
our tenderness to poverty ! 

Observe, too, how parties in authority deal with desti- 
tution and suffering. 

I select the following from a collection of about five 
hundred similar scenes. 

Arranged consecutively and published they would form 
a sad but very startling record. 

Attempted Suicide. 

"A pour young woman, a widow, dressed in deep 
mourning, appeai'ed before the court, when Mr. M'Manus 
stated that she had taken a quantity of opium, and had 
also given some to one of her children, of whom she had 
four, the eldest being but seven years old. It seems that 
a Mr. M. had taken out an execution against the poor 
woman's goods, for a debt of between £3 and ,£4 owing 
by her late husband, and that the circumstance preyed 
so upon her spirits, that she was induced to attempt self- 
destruction in consequence. Mr. Moxon said that the 
governors and guardians of the work-house had oftered to 
redeem her things, but as they had been removed to Mr. 
Waites's, by a Mr. Groves, who had possession of them, 
time had not been allowed for their restoration. Sir 
William Lowthorp lectured.' the poor creature^ on the enor- 
mity of the crime she had attempted.^ and advised her being 


taken f 07- some time into the worJc^house, until her mind 


The editor's comment on the scene is apt, judicious, 
and humane. He says: " The best way to administer to 
such a .' mind diseased ' would be for ISir William Low- 
thorp, and other rich men, to raise a subscription for a 
poor, distracted creature like the above, and assist her 
at Jiome. Putting her and her four children into the 
work-house is far more likely to confirm incipient mad- 
ness than to cure it." — Police Report, Hull Packet, 
August 27, 1S41. 

What remedy, then, is suggested? 

What is really meant by a national recognition of the 
claims of the industrious and deserving poor? 

Let an experiment be tried. In the first instance on 
a very limited scale. Let reward and relief go together. 
Let alms-houses be built in some half-dozen counties for 
the reception of the disabled and meritorious poor. Let 
them be occupied by those who have borne good cha- 
racters ; by those v^'hom poverty has overtaken in con- 
sequence of unavoidable calamity ; by those who have 
struggled to the very last with adversity, and have been 
overborne in the unequal warfare. Let the state erect 
and maintain these buildings. Let the nominations to 
them be vested in the neighbouring clergy, and the neigh- 
bouring magistracy; and let the pecuniary allowance 
connected with them be no starveling jnttcmce, but a sum 
on which life can reasonably be supported. Let it at 
least be at the rate of four shillings per week. 

" A pretty expense!" cries some political economist, 
who cherishes as much affection for the po^ir as Lord 
Ripon does for Mrs. Newton. " What ! burden the 
country after this fashion! x\ likely matter, truly ! A 
tolerably heavy item you will add to the national ex- 
penditure !" 

I reply, " No : a very humble aifair — as humble as the 
donkey-cart which the noble earl tendered for the use 
of the curate's wife, Mrs. Crovvther. But m?/ proposition 
would be closed with while his lordship's was waived." 

Admitting, however, that the scheme must necessarily 
add to the burdens of the state, who shall say that it is a 
sacrifice which the country, if called upon, would not 
cheerfully make ? 


The country which can vote five thousand pounds for 
the purchase of a single picture for the National Gallery j 
the country which can vote twenty thousand pounds for 
the repair of an ugly and inconvenient palace, placed on 
a swampy and insalubrious site — would tliat her Majesty 
were, as her attached and aiiectionate people wish her to 
be, more agreeably and more suitably lodged — that coun- 
try will never grudge, year by year, a grant of some six- 
teen or eighteen thousand pounds as the commencement 
of an experiment for maintaining and encouraging its aged, 
suffering, and meritorious poor. 

Call the scheme Utopian if you will ; characterize it, if 
you choose, as extravagant ; say that it can never be 
carried out; affirm that the country v^ill never endure 
it ; and that the class for which it was intended do not 
require it — something must be done. The present sys- 
tem can never stand. The existing poor law is doomed. 
After the Andover revelations, meiih minds were made vp. 
Public opinion, months ago, has pronounced against it. 
It has been "weighed in the balance" and "found 

But let me call in another ally. Let a poet's voice be 
heard. Let the pleadings of the Bard of Morwenstow,' 
in his "Echoes from Old Cornwall," gain a ready and a 
willing ear. If, as I suspect, he be the son of the loved 
and venerated Dr. Hawker, once vicar of Charles, his 
sympathy for the poor and attachment to their cause are 
hereditary. With no text in the Sacred Volume was his 
munificent father better acquainted-^— none did he carry 
out into more beneficial exercise than this : " Give alms 
of thy goods, and never turn thy face from any poor man, 
and then the face of the Lord shall not be turned away 
from thee !" 

He is now before the throne ! He views face to face 
the Great Father! the unceasing and unwearied bene- 
factor of the whole human race ; the helper of the father- 
less, and God of the widow! "These now relations of 
the ascended spirit to the Universal Father, how near ! 
how tender! how strong! how exalting! Oh! shall 
our world liness, and hard-hcartedness^ and unforsaken sins 

!•' Echoes from Old Cornwall," by the Rev R. T. Hawker. M.A., 
Vicar of Morwenstow. 


separate us, by a gulf which cannot be passed, from the 
society and felicity of Heaven ?" 

The poor have hands, and feet, and eyes, 

Flesh, and a feeling mind ; 
They breathe the breath of mortal sighs, 

They are of human kind ! 
They weep such tears as others shed, 

And now and then they smile, 
For sweet to them is that poor bread 

They win with honest toil. 


The poor men have their wedding-day, 

And children climb their knee, 
They have not many friends, for they 

Are in such misery. 
They sell their youth, their skill, their pains. 

For hire, in hill and glen ; 
The very blood within their veins 

It flows for other men ! 


They should have roofs to call their own 

When they grow old and bent, 
Meek houses built of dark, grey stone — 

Worn labour's monument ! 
There should they dwell beneath the thatch, 

With threshold calm and free ; 
No stranger's hand should lift the latch 

To mark their poverty. 


Fast by the church those walls should stand ; 

Her aisles in youth they trod, 
They have no home in all the land. 

Like that old house of God ! 
There, there, the sacrament was shed. 

That gave them heavenly birth, 
And lifted up the poor man's head 

With princes of the earth ! 


I know not why — but when they tell 

Of houses fair and wide, 
Where troops of poor men go to dwell 

In chambers side by side ; 
And when they vaunt, that in those walls 

They have their worship-day, 
Where the stern signal coldly calls 

The imprison'd poor to pray ; — 


I think — 


" Oh ! for the poor man's church again, 

With one roof over all, 
Where the true hearts of free-born men 

Might beat beside the wall ! 
The altars, where iu holier days 

Our fathers were forgiven. 
Who went with meek and faithful ways 

Through the old aisles to heaven!" 

And now, gentle reader, I have done ! And thus do I 
take my leave of thee : " Wherefore, believing soul, 
abound in love ! Love fervently ; love constantly ; love 
eminently. Love Him whose essence is love, and in 
Him love his creatures. Love your kindred ; love your 
enemies ; love saints ; love angels ; love strangers ; love 
aliens. Be rooted and grounded in love. Let all enmity 
cease. Let universal charity prevail. Begin the life of 
heaven which is everlasting loveP' 



BY M, N..., 








Stereotyped by 

Printed and Bound by 



I HAVE selected this little treatise for an early place 
in the Universal Masonic Library, because I deemed it 
an excellent production in itself — in which opinion I 
have the concurrence of several enlightened minds ; and 
because its antiquity, foreign origin, and the peculiarly 
practical style in which sundry objections, ancient, but 
even now urged against the Masonic Craft, are answered, 
give it high claims to literary distinction. 

This treatise is numbered 9 in the catalogue of Car- 
fton's Library. In the annotated catalogue he has been 
kind enough to furnish me, he observes, concerning 
it, that " all the suspicious charges brought against the 
Institution at that early day (1765) are ably answered." 
The original title in full (see "Carson's Catalogue," 
as published in the Universal Masonic Library "Advo- 
cate") is : " Apologie pour I'Ordre des Francs-Masons. 
Par M. N ^ * *, membre de I'Ordre; avec des Chansons. 
Nouvelle Edition, augmentee par 1' Auteur. A la Haye : 
George Gosse, 1765. 12mo. Frontispiece, pp. xiv., 
126." In this edition, the songs and the frontispiece, 
being of but little merit, are omitted — with these 
exceptions, the work is entire. 

I am gratified to speak to the merits of the transla- 
tion. Those who are familiar with French must see 


that the translator, Bro. the Prof. Thorpe, has done a 
work here alike creditable to himself and honourable 
to the Order. It augurs well for the much larger and 
more diSicult tasks he has in hand (Clavel, Ragon, and 
the like), and will, I doubt not, be an assurance to all 
my subscribers that this portion of the great enterprise, 
like the other, is in competent hands. 

R. M. 

Lodge, Ky. Sept., 1855. 




G. M. 

D.T. L.L. D.D.D.L.H.S. 

My Lord : 

I take the liberty of dedicating this little work to 
Your Excellency, although the distance of my residence 
has rendered it impossible for me first to ask your per- 
mission. My great affection for your illustrious person, 
your goodness, of which I have so frequently experienced 
the effects, and those honourable ties, which, in uniting 
you to the Order, have given to our Lodges a Chief 
as zealous for the honour and glory of our Society in 
general as ready to serve all who have the happiness 
to be members of it ; all these considerations induce me 
to hope. My Lord, that Your Excellency will accept this 
poor homage on my part. Were it less imperfect, I 
would say it was due to you. 

I have the honour to be, with profound respect, 
My Lord, 

Your Excellency's 

Very humble and obedient Servant, 

■^ « * «• 


This Apology is not entirely new, although it has 
never yet been printed, its author having shown the 
manuscript to several persons of his acquaintance, out 
of the Order as well as in it. When it was written, 
the Society of Freemasons was but beginning to be 
known in France, and as to some people it appeared 
still more strange than new, awakening in their minds 
suspicion and alarm, whilst others, from hostility or 
malice, pretended to foresee a thousand imaginary dan- 
gers in the toleration our Lodges everywhere ex- 
perienced, it seemed proper to draw up a refutation 
of such conjectures ; since, however extravagant they 
might be in themselves, they might not be. without some 
influence on the minds of those who are incapable of 
drawing just conclusions for themselves. For this rea- 
son I have judged it proper to give serious answers 
to the suspicions of Atheism, Deism, of indifference in 
religious matters, of evil designs against governments, 
and of the assassination of revealers of the secret. 
Theit intense atrocity is, perhaps, a sufficient refuta- 
tion of these suspicions ; yet it seemed that the Frater- 
nity owed to the public some explicit declaration on 
such points. At the present day, no sensible man could 
be found who would venture to insist on such odious 
suspicions. The whole conduct of the Order, and the 
characters of the many excellent persons who are to 
be found among its members, are more than sufficient 
to stop the mouth of calumny. I, therefore, readily 
admit, that the Chapters treating of these scandalous 
charges might have been omitted as needless, in places 


where the Order is known. But I have judged it better 
not to retrench what ought to be comprehended in a 
complete apology, and may be regarded by some persons 
as most interesting ; and, moreover, it is not impossible 
that the Order may be exposed to the same accusations, 
in places where it is yet not understood, or to which it 
may hereafter extend. These considerations, added to 
the advice of persons on whose judgment I have great 
reliance, have determined me to to submit this Apology 
to the public as it was originally written. 


Introduction 1 

First Objection. — That these assembhes may be du-ected against 
reUgion in general ; or, at least, aim to establish one denomi- 
nation of Christians on the ruins of every other . . .5 

Second Ohjection. — That the great mystery of these assembhes 
lays them open to the suspicion of some secret disorder . . 7 

Third Objection. — That this Society may couceal a party danger- 
ous to civil government . ...... 9 

Fourth Objection. — That the mysterious assembhes of Free- 
masons may facilitate to conspirators the means of forming 
clandestine assembhes, under the pretext that they belong to 
this Order 15 

Fifth Objection. — That the preservation of the secrets is due 
only to some ridiculous or shameful practice, which compels 
the initiate to be silent after he has undergone the cere- 
mony 17 

Sixth Objection. — Drawn from the misconduct of some members 
of the Order . 18 

Seventh Objection. — That Freemasons, recognized as such, have 
been known to speak of the Order and its mysteries in such a 
manner as to give but a poor opinion of them 

Eighth Objection. — Drawn from our exclusion of the Fair Sex 
without any exception or hmitation .... 

Ninth Objection. — That it is highly imprudent, and even sinful 
to hazard initiation into an Order, one of whose known funda 
mental principles it is never to reveal its mysteries 

Reply to certain Decisions ventured by the Inquisitive, against 
which we, in our turn, propound three Questions or Difficul 





First Question. — Propounded to those who say that there is an 
oath which preserves the secret; from the natural repugnance 
of men to violate the sanctity of an oath . ^ . . 



Second Question. — Propounded to those who assert that there is 
no oath, because the Order has no secret; the pretended 
mystery being only a chimera of the imagination . . .31 

Third Question. — Addressed to those who say that if there is in 
the Order a mystery, either with or without an oath, the fear 
of being assassinated, in case of indiscretion, restrains all the 
members of the Order, and insensibly forms them to a per- 
petual silence 35i 

Examination of the Question, How it has happened that, while 
all the rehgious of the world, good or bad, as well as all 
parties, have had their persecutors, the Order of Fi'eemasons 
has at all times been exempt, at least with regard to indivi- 
duals. Whether this truth imphes either laxity of principles 
in the Order in general, or want of zeal in its members ? . .35 

Proof of the Purity and Innocence of the Order, drawn from 
the general silence of the dying . . . . . .37 

Reply to those who ask why we affect such mystery . . .38 

Reply to the question. What is the purpose of the Order? . 39 

Conclusion 41 




It is not very surprising that there have been found, 
from time to time, people of all classe.s, great and small, 
who have striven to render the Order of Freemasons 
suspected or contemptible in the eyes of the public. 
The impenetrable mystery which is the peculiar charac- 
teristic of this Society has naturally excited the curiosity 
of some, the envy and jealousy of others. I can readily 
appreciate the motives which have led some to condemn 
it ; I can easily understand that very worthy men may 
have fallen upon this rock, either because a secret so 
inviolably kept has alarmed their conscience, as if there 
were in it something supernatural or hostile to religion, 
or because they have suspected some concealed design 
which might at a future day develop itself. And the 
dread of this unknown and untried development ought, 
they suppose, to induce all men unconnected with the 
Order to keep themselves on their guard, since no one 
can foresee from what side, when, or upon whom the blow 
may fall. 

In order to put to silence the malice of the one class 
and to tranquillize the conscience and probity of the 
other, I have undertaken this apology for an Order to 
which I esteem it an honour to belong. I joyfully make 
common cause with my Brethren. And let no one 
object that I am treating of a matter known only to my 

The mystery, I confess, is known only to us; but the 


effects of the Association and the advantages derived from 
it are so widely spread that the public cannot be igno- 
rant of them. To the public, then, the most impartial 
of judges, I am about to submit my remarks: or rather 
t is before the tribunal of good sense and enlightened 
unprejudiced reason that I consent, with all my heart, 
the question shall be tried; and, if I advance anything 
that is contrary to, that does not absolutely accord vi^ith, 
her unvarying rules, I am willing to be condemned. 

The question may be asked, to what purpose this 
apology? Those who entertain apprehension of your 
mysteries, those who mistrust them, carry their hostility 
no farther. No one injures you either in person or pro- 
perty. A few people fear you, many despise you, but 
with all this your Order exists. What more would you 
have, since even where your lodges are not authorized 
they are in some sort tolerated, as is shown by the little 
care that is taken to watch you ? 

I confess that all this is literally true; but ought we to 
stop here and rest contented ? A simple toleration is 
not enough for us, and we do not desire to conceal our- 
selves. Either our object is bad, useless, and vain, or it 
is good, just, and laudable. On the first supposition we 
deserve no toleration, on the second we have a full right 
to aspire to the favour of the public. We believe that 
we deserve this favour, and that the goodness of our cause 
must necessarily procure it for us. 

But if it is true that this Society has not been attacked 
by other societies, if the justice of governments has 
always deemed it worthy of protection or at least of tol- 
eration, the Order notwithstanding has its enemies, 
especially where it is most extended. And although 
those who seek to vilify the Order or to render it sus- 
pected can rest their vain accusations only on false sup- 
positions, the religious secrecy observed in the Order 
preventing their drawing their arguments against the 
Order and its fundamental rules from itself, yet they fail 
not to insist on their various charges with as much assur- 
ance as if they were really well founded. They vary 
their accusations for the very reason that they know not 
on what to place them. At one time our assemblies are 
so many scenes of the most criminal prostitution; those 
who say that we meet simply to divert ourselves profess 


to be peculiarly merciM to us. Some go so far as to 
suspect that religion will in the end suffer, and states be 
unsettled by us. These are the grave and serious charges 
that tend to make us feared and hated. Others seek to 
bring contempt on the whole Fraternity. The pretended 
secret, they say, is nothing ; it is some indecency ; some 
debasing ceremony to be endured by the new comers, 
which the others have passed through before them. 
This it is which makes the pretended secret secure. 
Some are restrained by false shame, others by a sort of 
fanaticism for the Order. The secret has never yet been 
revealed : what a shame it would be for me to lead the 
way ! And then, it is added, who knows if assassination 
would not be employed to arrest or to punish the indis- 
cretion or treachery of a Brother ? 

I know that a great number of excellent men in all 
conditions of life keep silent lest they should judge too 
hastily. These persons wisely observe a middle course. 
They cannot resolve to approve absolutely an Institution 
based upon secrets to them unknown. This scruple 
prevents their seeking to become members of the Order, 
for which they, nevertheless, entertain a certain good will, 
because they remark among its members many men dis- 
tinguished for their rank or their piety. Their modesty 
and discretion well merit an apology for the Order in 
their behalf; we hope they will be satisfied with it; and 
that, although they can become acquainted with our 
secrets by initiation alone, at least all their scruples 
will be removed. 

The common people also merit some attention. Not 
worse disposed than other men, but more easily excited; 
more generally deficient in the light of education, conse- 
quently more readily imposed on, and prone to adopt 
opinions without any other motive than a blind preju- 
dice. Sometimes, also, they act from the insinuations of 
more enlightened men, which reasons, drawn from malice, 
envy, false policy, or more frequently idleness, indirectly 
furnish to them. It is, then, no more than justice to do 
something also in their behalf. Charity requires this. 
They form a part, nay, the largest part of mankind, and 
since the many worthy men that are among them are by 
no means refused admission to our body, since as men, 
reasonable men, they have a right to admission, why 


shoual we not have regard to them in this matter as well 
as to others ? 

Besides, do we not find many, even among those who 
have enjoyed the greatest advantages of education, suffer- 
ing themselves to be drawn along in the wake of popular 
opinion without the least examination? In this respect 
many a man is of the populace without in the least sus- 
pecting it, and in this case in instructing the one we shall 
at the same time restore the other. 

Finally, some persons endeavour to make one half of 
the human race, and that the most amiable half, hostile 
to us — the sex which merits not only our attention and 
respect, but all our admiration and our love. The pre- 
text employed is specious. What contempt, they say, 
what injustice to the fair sex ! Ladies are excluded from 
the Order, and so excluded as to leave them no hope of 
entrance. The secret is to be kept for ever impenetrable 
to them. The humblest among men has at least some 
hope for himself, whilst the most elevated station, the 
most distinguished merit, cannot obtain the admission of 
a woman! What judgment do Masons form of the char- 
acter of ladies? Do they think them absolutely un- 
worthy of being entrusted with a secret? Does not 
experience every day contradict so dishonourable a no- 
tion? As this reproach appears at first sight to have 
some foundation, since it is true that, according to our 
principles, ladies cannot be admitted to the Order, the 
respect that is due to them, the veneration we entertain 
for them, demand that we should explain to them the 
I'easons for a course which appears, at first, so extraor- 
dinary, and of which they seem to have a right to com- 
plain. This we engage to do ; and we trust they will 
be the more easily satisfied with our reasons, since their 
exclusion is partly the consequence of their condition, 
of the empire they have yielded to men, and which men 
have too often abused. These are some of the motives 
which have induced me to undertake this apology. I 
shall now enter on the work, and reply article by article 
to every objection that has been raised either to the 
Order itself, or to the consequences which result from 
its principles. 



That these AssemUies may he directed against Religion in 
general; or at least may aim to establish one denomination 
of Christians, on the ruins of every other. 

This first objection appears to comprehend two distinct 
and separate points; but as most of the arguments will 
apply equally to both, I have judged that it would be 
useless to divide them : they may be both answered at 
once, without affecting the clearness of the reasoning. 

I. We carefully avoid admitting into the Order an 
Atheist or a Deist, as far as it is possible to detect in a 
candidate any such opinions, or to observe in his conduct 
any appearance that he is imbued with such principles. 
As, for example, when a man has for several years neg- 
lected public worship according to the rites and cere- 
monies of the communion in which he was baptized. 
Failings of this nature would be more than sufficient 
to prevent admission to the Order, with what good 
qualities soever a man might otherwise be endowed. 

II. The Order admits Christians only. Beyond the 
pale of the Christian Church no one can or ought to be 
received ; Jews, Mohammedans, and Pagans are ordinari- 
ly excluded as infidels. 

These two remarks would be more than sufficient to 
prove to a demonstration that the Order, so far from 
being hostile to religion in general, or the Christian 
religion in particular, draws a part of its honour from 
the fact that it admits to its bosom Christianity only. 
By this course it shows that the fundamental principles 
of the Order flow from the profession of Christianity. 

But the reply to the second point of the first objec- 
tion will furnish still farther proofs. 

III. All Christian communions have equal rights in 
the Order, and are admitted without any distinction : 
this is a well-established truth, supported by our con- 
stant practice, and no one will deny it. This point 
being established, how can any one imagine that one of 
these Christian societies can entertain the secret design 
of establishing itself upon the ruins of the other. It 
would be necessary to suppose the secret known only to 
the members of the one communion, and this would be 
an absolute impossibility. 


For, how many people, passing from one communion 
to another, would carry this dangerous secret with them? 
How many are there to whom all communions are 
equally indifferent? Add to this the danger of being 
involved in a party which must one day fall under the 
attack of all other communions, justly combined against 
it. Here is far more than would be required to bury the 
whole Order under the ruins of its mysteries. 

If, then, there is no reserved secret — if the whole Order 
without exception participates in the same mysteries, as 
must necessarily be the case, have I not a right to con- 
clude that it is likewise impossible that one Christian 
communion should pretend, under shelter of this Order, 
to raise itself at the expense of all the others ? Would 
not the members of different communions perpetually 
thwart each other in so senseless a project ? and would 
they not be so many spies upon each other in every step 
that should be taken ? 

IV. This argument gains additional strength from the 
following observation, which is directed against the pre- 
tended irreligion of the Order : — That we constantly find 
that men, after their initiation into the Order, remain as 
zealous supporters of Christiaiaity as they were before, 
and just as strongly attached to the peculiar dogmas and 
modes of worship of the communions to which they 
belong. This truth is everywhere observed, and no one 
will deny it. Whence I conclude — First, that religion, 
and the Christian religion only, subsists in the Order ; 
and cannot be separated from it, but is in it as the basis 
and foundation: and, secondly, that it is not possible that 
any one Christian communion should seek to extend its 
powers to the prejudice of the other, since the Order 
admits to its mysteries all ■ Christian communions indif- 

How, then, can a Society, which cannot and will not 
exist separate from religion in general, and above all 
from the Christian religion in particular, tend to its sub- 
version ? 

Or how can a Society, which admits into its bosom all 
Christian communions without distinction, have for its 
object to establish one of these communions on the ruins 
of one or all of the others ? 



That the great mystery of these Assemblies lays them (ypen to 
the suspicion of some secret disorder. 

What I have just said, to demonstrate how much reli- 
gion is venerated and respected in the Order, might be a 
sufficient answer to this second objection. For if reli- 
gion is not only admitted into the Order, but is judged 
worthy of the same veneration as the Supreme Being who 
is the author of it, does it not plainly follow that 
nothing can take place in our Assemblies that is in the 
slightest degree opposed to the strictest laws of Christi- 
anity ? 

We, therefore, reply to this second objection only from 
the charity due to those who are in error with regard to 
a fact on which we have it in our power to enlighten 
them, and from a sort of cumulation of evidence ; and, 
because, as there are always some men evil disposed, we 
are willing to drive these to their last entrenchments. 

And here I premise that, if I sometimes avail myself 
of the support of religion to draw inferences in favour of 
Freemasonry, I do this always without pi'ctending to put 
the one on a level with the other. We acknowledge and 
adopt with all our heart the proposition, tliat religion is 
the most ancient, the most necessai-y, and the most 
sacred of all institutions ; and that to her alone we 
ought to give the first rank, because she derives her 
origin immediately fi'om God, the Maker of all things. 

I. Every one knows that the religious assemblies of 
the first Christians, notwithstanding their purity and 
innocence, did not escape the odious accusations of the 
Pagans, sworn enemies of their faith and worship. The 
violence and cruelty of their persecutors obliged the 
faithful of those times to hold their assemblies at night, 
and in the most retired places, often in caves of the 
earth ; and the very tyranny Vvhich forced them to this 
secrecy was the first basely to reproach them with the 
false consequences of the precaution ; and the people, 
without examining into the causes, blindly adopted the 
ideas with which interested men sought to inspire them, 
to increase their hostility both to the religion and to 


those who professed it. Bat at length a time arrived 
when the innocence of the believers triumphed. 

If a religion so pure was attacked with such cruel 
calumnies, is it to be wondered at that Freemasonry has 
not escaped? which, although possessing secrets impene- 
trable to the uninitiated, has never laid the slightest 
claim to inspiration or infallibility ? 

That the places where the Lodges meet are unknown 
to strangers, when the assemblies are not authorized by 
an express permission from the sovereign ; when they 
are at best only tolerated ; or that, in countries where 
they are permitted to meet publicly, they always sit 
with closed doors, are precautions from which it would 
be extremely unjust to draw invidious consequences; 
since, in the former case, respect for the sovereign would 
dictate a prudent use of the toleration he has granted ; 
and, in the second place, it is very natural that the meet- 
ings should be held with closed doors, since secrecy is 
one of the most essential points of the Order. 

It is unjust, then, to reproach Freemasons for their 
secret assemblies and their closed doors; for to change 
this practice would be to reveal the mysteries of the 

II. I go still farther : I will suppose for a moment that 
good and honourable men may have been entrapped 
among others, because, before their initiation, they had 
not foreseen the disorders that are practised in these 
iniquitous assemblies ; and that afterwards they had it 
not in their power to retrace their steps, having been 
constrained either by persuasion, or by violence, or by 
both united, to complete the ceremonies, so that when 
the fault was once commenced, it became absolutely 
necessary to carry it through. 

But how is it that these persons of acknowledged 
probity and sincerely religious character, after having 
been thus cruelly deceived, are observed to embrace the 
interests of the Order with such earnest zeal ? would 
not their conscience for ever reproach them with the 
fault they had committed? and would not a just indig- 
nation against societies so opposed to piety and sound 
morality induce them to abjure, at least in their hearts, 
such assemblies, and to absent themselves for ever from 
scenes of such licentiousness, even on the supposition 


that the engagements they had entered into rendered 
it impossible for them to make the secret known? It 
would be mere chicanery to argue that the same neces- 
sity which forced them to complete the work of their 
reception might engage them, by the most solemn oaths, 
to visit, at least at times, the assemblies of the Order, 
how great soever their natural repugnance to them. 

Every one will at once perceive the weakness of such 
an objection. Every Christian understands that an oath 
which binds him to commit a crime, even if taken volun- 
tarily and without constraint, is of itself absolutely null 
and void: that it would be a greater crime to keep such 
an oath than to have originally pronounced it. Still 
more forcibly would he feel the indispensable necessity of 
revoking such an oath if it had been imposed on him by 
fraud or violence. 


That this Society may conceal a party dangerous to Civil 

I shall enlarge upon this article and endeavour to 
exhaust it. The charge is a grave one. Sovereigns are 
the anointed of the Lord. The abolition of the Supreme 
power, in whatever form it may be exercised, whether by 
Kings, Princes, or Lords, or finally, by Magistrates, 
clothed with all authority in a State, would overthrow 
the order of civil society, would introduce disorder, con- 
fusion and crime, by the impunity that would ensue, and 
would, if such a thing were possible, destroy even reli- 
gion itself. 

It is utterly impossible to suppose in the Order so per- 
nicious a design ; and to no other end than the sole 
pleasure of overturning a power emanating from God; 
every Sovereign being a living representative of the 
Supreme Governor of the Universe. Any one who 
examines into the conduct of the Order w^herever it has 
been known, will be obliged to confess the truth of my 

I. As England is the kingdom in which the Order 
has most flourished and been most widely spread, and 
as that monarchy has been peculiarly sujiject to great 


revolutions, I will confine myself to the conduct the 
Society has there uniformily observed. This examination 
v^ill satisfactorily prove the integrity of our Order, its 
wisdom, and its entire impartiality in all that relates to 
the spirit of party. 

In fact, we nowliere find, either in history or tradition, 
any circumstance which gives occasion for the suspicion 
that the Order has ever been in the sliglitest degree con- 
cerned in any of the revolutions which have more than once 
brought that kingdom to the very brink of ruin. An 
examination of the facts will throw still more light on 
what I have just advanced. I omit here a more length- 
ened detail, because I shall soon have occasion to return 
to the subject. 

II. But how can the Order be suspected of entertain- 
ing designs hostile to government, whether monarchical^ 
republican, or of whatever form it may be '? Our mysteries 
are not impenetrable to the majesty of kings ; many have 
been initiated into the Order, to make no mention of 
great princes, who, although not ennobled by the crown 
and sceptre, are, nevertheless, in their respective territo- 
ries, endowed with sovereign power. It is the same with 
magistrates of all grades, not excepting those who, at 
the head of a Republican State, occupy the place of 
kingi. Would it not be the height of madness to admit 
such persons to the mysteries of an Order, the end and 
purpose of which was to annihilate their power? Or, 
rather, is it not a proof of folly to believe that two things 
so incompatible as such a purpose and such a practice 
could subsist together ? 

III. Again, it has been found that sovereigns and 
magistrates, once initiated into the Order, have become 
its firmest supporters, its most zealous defenders, its most 
open protectors. Is it possible to believe that an oath 
which would tend to the abolition of their authority 
could be so far binding upon them? Any one who would 
maintain such a proposition, would deservedly be con- 
sidered to be out of his wits. 

IV. Some one may, perhaps, reply, that possibly we 
may not reveal our true mysteries to sovereigns and 
magistrates. That this is altogether impossible it will be 
very easy to demonstrate. 

1. If the Order concealed some mystery, whose object 


it was to destroy the authority of the powers that be, or, 
at least, to lessen it, it would, indeed, be very desirable to 
have a reserved secret carefully hidden from kings, 
princes, and magistrates ; and it would be still further 
necessary that these illustrious characters, although 
initiated into the Order, should be kept in ignorance that 
there was anything concealed from them ; and that they 
should confidently believe that they were acquainted 
with the whole secret. This would be no easy matter ; 
but if we were to admit its possibility, we should thereby 
be no farther advanced ; for, 

2. It would avail nothing to conceal such a secret 
from princes; it would be necessary to conceal it also 
from the thousands daily admitted into the Order, whose 
zeal for the governments under which they live admits 
of no doubt. Love for their princes, the good of the 
state, the Christian religion, which teaches us to be 
obedient to our rulers, and we may add to all this, 
their own interest, all these motives would constantly 
urge them to the performance of their duties to their 
lawful sovereign, and inevitably lead them to reveal 
a secret which no oath could bind them to keep, since its 
purpose would be pernicious. 

3. Finally, suppose this secret to be known only to 
the Grand Master, and, at most, to some few members of 
whom he could be very sure; and that it is transmitted 
by each Grand Master to his successor; has there never 
been one man honest enough to reveal the secret for the 
sake of honour, religion, and duty ? no one ambitious 
enough to denounce the mystery for the sake of his own 
aggrandizement? nor any one avaricious enough to sell it 
for the sake of the profit to be made of it? 

4. But even suppose, by an extreme chance, this case 
has not arrived ; we must, at least, suppose some certain 
time fixed for the execution of the project; for if the 
Order entertains such views, it will not remain for ever 
inactive. But how could those few persons whom we 
have supposed alone admitted into the true mystery, set 
the whole body in motion to execute the most criminal 
of all treasons? And what would such a body of men 
think, having all along supposed themselves in a society 
of honest men and Christians, when they discovered, not 
only that they had so long beesn the dupes of a few 


designing men, but that these intended to make them the 
instraments of the blackest of crimes? He who can 
believe these things possible may well anticipate an 
agreement between fire and w^ater. 

V; But mere probabilities are not enough ; we proceed 
to examples. England is the country in which the Order 
s best known ; and it is precisely there that its inno- 
cence, the integrity of its conduct, and, consequently, of 
its principles, have at all times been most remarked. It 
has never drawn upon itself, in that country, any more 
than in any other in the world, the least shadow of 
reproach or even of suspicion, although its principles 
and its maxims have been exposed to the severest proofs; 
and this I can clearly demonstrate. In the first place, 
with respect to religion, it is well known that Protest- 
antism prevails in England, but subdivided into two 
parties, which, far from having been always agreed, for a 
long time made open war upon each other, each wishing 
to be dominant, until, at length, one party prevailed 
over its antagonist. I refer, of course, to the Episcopal 
and Presbyterian parties. These contests occasioned the 
usurpation of Cromwell ; they cost Charles I. his life, and 
Charles II., his son and successor, very nearly his throne. 
Half a century has hardly sufficed to extinguish, or at 
least to smother the bitter party spirit which for so long 
a time racked that kingdom. 

The Catholic religion, formerly so flourishing in Eng- 
land, has still its partizans there, and, although this 
Christian communion is merely tolerated, and the laws 
exclude it from^ all participation in the government, the 
Catholic party, nevertheless, maintains itself and even 
forms a numerous body. It comprehends not only many 
of the middle classes, but also many gentlemen and some 
noblemen of high rank. This party, formerly the master 
in England for many ages, cannot see its present abase- 
ment, which it regards as the eft'ect of a usurpation of 
its rights, without deep regret and a strong desire to 
recover the ground it has lost. Such a desire is natural 
to men, as is also that of seeing the religion they profess 
in a respectable position ; especially when that religion 
once flourished to the exclusion of all others. Accord- 
ingly, that party has, from time to time, endeavoured to 
recover, if not the whole, at least some portion of its 


territory ; and these struggles have necessarily caused 
troubles and divisions in the island ; for it is of England 
that I am speaking. 

This same kingdom tolerates, also, more or less, several 
different Christian communities, which, if all were united 
among themselves, would form a considerable body. It 
is true they are comparatively too weak to accomplish 
anything for themselves; and this, doubtless, has pre- 
vented their attempting to make themselves dominant 
in that country. They may, however, have taken in- 
terest in the government, according as it was in a greater 
or less degree favourable to them ; they may have wished 
for a general liberty of conscience, in order that they 
might obtain a share of the advantages they saw pos- 
sessed by the dominant party ; and this both for their 
temporal interests and their own preservation. 

Beside these religious divisions, there is another source 
of misunderstanding in the English government — a 
source which may, from time to time, cause disturbance 
in the state, and seems to arise from the constitutions of 
the kingdom. 

Not that these constitutions are obscure in themselves, 
or that it is difficult to give them suitable interpretations, 
if men are willing to agree ; but, rather, because the 
government being limited, and the people having a share 
of the power, which, in other states, is centered in the 
person of the sovereign, it sometimes happens that the 
prince considers himself injured by the claims of the 
people ; or, on the other hand, that the people, fearing 
their privileges may be lessened or extinguished, oppose 
the sovereign in points which they might and ought to 
have permitted to pass without opposition ; either be- 
cause they are of small importance, or because the 
prince was clearly in the right. The nobility take dif- 
ferent sides, and the people follow their example : one 
party proclaiming itself the supporter of the power of 
the sovereign ; the other, the defender of the people's 
rights : hence the name Whig and Tory ; hence so many 
factions and cabals which more than once have nearly 
proved the destruction of the state. 

And are there not, at the present time, two parties in 
that kingdom? Has not each its adherents? If one 
seems inconsiderable, if it is thought to be crushed, it, 


nevertheless, is still in existence, and shows itself from 
time to time. After so long a digression, but one which 
it was hardly possible to avoid, these are the inferences 
I wish to draw : — 

Through the whole period of its existence in England, 
the Order of Freemasons has received among its members 
11 the honom'able men who have presented themselves 
from each of these different parties : Catholics and Pro- 
testants, Episcopalians and Presbyterians, Whigs and 
Tories — all party divisions being hdd aside. 

This general reception no one will deny; or I should 
have to demand when any of these various parties has 
been known to complain of its exclusion, and this assured- 
ly could never be shown. 

Nevertheless, the Order, receiving into its bosom so 
niRTij persons whose sentiments, views, and purposes 
were so opposite — the Order, I say, has subsisted in all 
its integrity, in all its glory, through such difficult 

I do not mean that, in entering into the Order, all 
party spirit is laid aside. By no means. The Order 
works no miracles. The Catholic continues a Catholic, 
and the Protestant a Protestant ; the Episcopalian pre- 
serves the same zeal for his High Church, and the Pres- 
byterian continues to support the discipline of his; Whig 
And Tory continue to advocate each his peculiar princi- 
ples ; but all these divisions can produce no disturbance 
in an Order which has nothing to do with them. An 
Order, instituted to maintain peace among Brothers, 
could not, and should not, embrace any party. Bitter- 
ness and disputation are banished from the Lodge. Ad- 
mirable effect of the principles of the Society — it unites 
all parties without forming any itself, whatever differ- 
ences of opinion its members may entertain with regard 
to things without. So in all the condemnations to death, 
or other penalties inflicted by one party upon certain 
members of an opposite party, as one prevailed over 
the other, no one ever heard that any Freemason was 
punished as a Freemason. 

VI. From all this I draw the conclusion, that the con- 
duct of the Order having always been such, in all quar- 
ters of the world wherever it has been established, and 
especially in England, where it has been most exposed to 


the temptation of forming a body formidable in the 
state — reckoning, moreover, among its members some of 
the first men of the kingdom — I conclude, I say, from all 
these proofs, that Freemasons, far from plotting against 
their governments, have always been, and will always be, 
faithful and zealous defenders of them — each one for the 
government whose subject he is, either by birth or 

And a Society which has no other purpose than to 
foster peace and union among men, believes itself entitled 
to expect for itself increasing approbation, goodwill, and 


That the Mysterious Assemblies of Freemasons may facilitate 
to Cotispirators the means of forming Clandestine Assem- 
blies, under the jiretext that they belong to this Order. 

It would be very unjust to make the Order suffer for 
the imaginary danger — that its mysterious assemblies may 
serve as a pretext to conspirators to form, under the same 
title, societies which might tend to the injury of the 
state. If this principle were once received, to what 
would not the public be reduced? How many useful 
societies, how many meritorious establishments, would 
it not be necessary to suppress, regard being had to the 
abuses which might, in the end, spring from them, and 
which, indeed, have occasionally resulted from them 
already ? 

But, without wandering from my subject, I can safely 
assert that clandestine assemblies of conspirators having 
never been held, in any part of the world, under the 
name or pretext of Freemasons' Lodges, it would be the 
greatest possible injustice to wish to insist on so ground- 
less a danger. 

I go farther : I maintain that it is not possible that 
such assemblies can ever be held under this pretext, or 
that the Order can ever be even the indirect cause of 
them. This I proceed to demonstrate from the four fol- 
lowing considerations : — 

I. The public are generally agreed that Freemasons 
have among them certain signs and a sort of language, by 


which they recognise each other so infallibly that a man 
who should attempt to pass for a Freemason, without 
really being one, would immediately be detected. There- 
fore, conspirators, or persons evil disposed to the state, 
would vainly attempt to hold their meetings under the 
name of Freemasons ; they would be denied by the 
Brotherhood, and their pretensions declared false in the 
face of the world. 

II. Bat should these conspirators succeed, under this 
pretext, in holding, without interruption, assemblies in 
which it. would be easier for them to deliberate on the 
means of attaining their ends than if they consulted 
each other only individually, and with too great an 
appearance of mystery, what would result from all this? 
Merely that their secret, not being of the nature of 
Freemasonry, would soon leak out, and draw its pun- 
ishment after it. 

III. In places where Lodges are public, and authorized 
by consent of the sovereign, it would be impossible for con- 
spirators to form false Lodges under the pretext of assem- 
blies of the Order. There is no Freemason who has not 
TuU right of admission to any Lodge in the world ; how, 
uhen, could such conventicles close their doors against 
any Freemason who should demand entrance? This 
would be to violate the fundamental rules of the Order, 
and to falsify the title under which they sought to shield 
themselves. But could they admit a man who would 
instantly detect the imposture, and who, by making the 
fact known, would cause the magistrate to institute par- 
ticular inquiry into the motives for such an assembly. 

IV. With regard to those places where Lodges are 
merely tolerated, and where the Fraternity can only 
assemble in secret, the risk of pernicious assemblies can 
neither be more nor less; for bothalike are forced to 
concealment. Evil-disposed men would assemble none 
the less if there were no Freemason in the j)lace ; they 
would even be safer, for there would be no risk that 
some Freemason, learning by chance the meeting of an 
assembly under the name of the Order, should prefer a 
claim to be admitted among them. And now, I think, I 
have said more than enough to answer this objection. 



That the "preservation of the secret is due only to some ridicu- 
lous or shameful practice which compels the initiate to he 
silent after he has 'undergone the ceremony. 

In refuting the second objection I showed that it was im- 
possible any practice should exist in our Lodges contrary 
to what religion requires: it is not necessary, therefore, 
to return to that point. So, also, is there no ground for 
the suspicion of those who make the objection I am 
about to answer. They say that, without offending 
against religion, there may enter into our mysteries some 
ceremony capable of covering an initiate with shame if 
it should become publicly known that he had been com- 
pelled to submit to it ; and that, besides, the desire of 
seeing others caught as he has been, makes him carefully 
keep the secret ; that, moreover, it must be a source of 
no small amusement to a man, when once he has been 
initiated, to be in his turn an eye-witness of the folly of 
so many people of all ranks, great and small, who come, 
one after another, to fall into the same snare ; and espe- 
cially to see grave and respectable men caught in it as 
well as others. It is easy to reply to such an objection 
as this, which we must consider rather as a jest, designed 
to entrap us into some avowal, than as a diiiiculty to 
which a serious answer is expected : accordingly, I notice 
't only because I am desirous that nothing whatever 
.shall be passed over. 

I. If we imagine the most disgraceful things to which 
a man could be subjected, (I say nothing in this place of 
criminality, we are now speaking only of what would be 
considered disgraceful in the idea of the public,) I do not 
understand how a respectable man should be disgraced 
by exposing such an initiation. For, 1, he could not 
know before his reception to what he was to be sub- 
jected, and even should he be chargeable with some 
imprudence in incurring such a risk, his fault has been 
shared by numbers of persons wdiose character, birth, 
and station, were so many motives to the removal of his 
doubts : 2, in any case, in naming the many illustrious par- 
takers of his foult, he would divert the public scorn from 
Himself on to a large number of persons of all ranks and 

18 ArOLOriY I'Oll THE 

evei'3' (.•haracter; and 3, if there would Le bonietliiiig 
very humiliating in conliessing such a secret, would it not 
be the duty of a good man to sacrifice himself, in some 
measure, for the public good, which would be outraged 
by the existence of a society whose purpose it is to turn . 
into ridicule a large portion of mankind. 

II. I am w'illing, however, to suppose what is impos- 
sible: that, among so many distinguished men, there 
has never been found one who would disregard the shame 
of such a confession; but are there not numbers initiated 
into the (.)rder, who are less sensitive as to what people 
may say of them'/* and many more who, impelled by a 
Duturaily jocular disposition, w^ould not hesitate to reveal 
such ridiculous secrets; beginning by rallying themselves 
first for having been so taken in, and then so many others 
as they have seen duped in their turn? Lastly, are there 
not many of unblushing countenance who, especially with 
such examples, would see no cause for shame! and indis- 
cretion, wine, would not these, sooner or later, have pro- 
duced their ordinary effects? and were there nothing else, 
ixvould not avarice alone have surmounted all shame? 

III. Finally, the consequences wdiich result from the 
institution of the Order, and flow from its principles, 
cannot be the result of certain ridiculous or indecent 
ceremonies such as have been supposed. The purpose 
of the Order and its effects shall be explained hereafter. 

Drawn from the miscondtict of some viemhers of the Order. 

This objection is so weak that it will need but few 
w^ords to answer it. 

I. Those who desire to discredit a body of men, usually 
pay little attention to the large number of good men 
who compose it : these they disregard, while they care- 
i'ully point out the failings, real or pretended, of a small 
portion of the members. They act unjustly even towards 
these last; for, granting that they have failings, passions, 
vices, if you will, might not some good qualities be met 
with in them, to counterbalance the bad? A man may 
be respectable, although he may be enslaved by some 
master passion for a considerable time. 


I beg the reader to remember the dedaration that I 
made when I began this apology ; that is, that when I 
draw my inferences and examples from religion, I mean 
not to derogate from the profound respect which is due 
to truth ernanating directly from God. Religion should 
always be the prime mover of our plans and of our con- 
duct." This reiterated declaration will be sufficient to 
preserve me from misconstruction. 

II. AVe cannot justly require of the Order more than 
we require of religion itself. What shall be thought of 
such an argument as this: — There are to be found among 
Freemasons vicious and corrupt men, cheats and misers; 
therefore, the Order of Freemasons is a radically bad in- 
stitution'? Religion, proceeding from God himself, is 
subject to the same reproach; for not all Christians are 
good Christians. Why, then, should a human institution 
be condemned because a few of its members are not 
exempt from failings? If religion, notwithstanding all 
its excellence, is not able to make all its followers saints, 
can the same defect be reasonably objected to the Order 
of Freemasons. 


That Freemasons, recognized as such, have been hiown to 
speak of the Order and its mysteries in such a manner as to 
give us but a poor opinion of them. 

This objection will be as easily answered as the pre- 
ceding ; the one being as weak as the other. 

I. Among those who permit themselves to jest at the 
Order and its mysteries, or who treat them as trifles, we 
have first to observe that some men profess to be Free- 
masons without really being so. We see every day pre- 
tenders to this title publicly exposed by some Brother 
whom they did not suspect to belong to the Order. 
However, I will frankly confess that there are some- 
times found real Freemasons, who, through indiscretion, 
trifling, or the itch of saying smart things, so far forget 
themselves as to speak disrespectfully of an Order which 
should secure their highest respect. Wine, also, may 
sometimes produce this scandalous effect; weak and 
superficial minds may occasionally commit the same fault 


from not having sufficiently reflected on the objects of 
the Institution, on the advantages which result from it, 
and what they owe to it. 

But, what is this small number of defective members, 
n comparison of so many others whose probity, honour 
nd piety accord so well with the zeal and regard which 
hey constantly manifest for the Order, congratulating 
themselves that they are members of it? Can we sus- 
pect men of such a character, either of a silly fanaticism, 
or of a base collusion? 

II. What nobler end can there be than that which the 
Christian religion sets before us? The practice of virtue 
in this world, and an eternity of happiness in the world 
to come. What better founded than its doctidnes; what 
more excellent than its morality ; what more desirable 
than its promises. Nevertheless, do we not daily see 
this daughter of heaven exposed to the raillery of the 
profane and the licentious ? What do I say ? Does it 
not often happen that people of undoubted piety suffer 
themselves to be led on by example, to utter expressions 
of which they subsequently bitterly repent? 


Drawn from our exclusion of the Fair Sex, without any excep- 
tion or limitation. 

The world abounds with paltry writings, tending either 
to decry women, or to turn them into ridicule. Certain 
failings, for which, however, the whole sex is not to be 
held responsible, have produced an abundance of satires, 
some of which we may consider as harmless jests, be- 
cause the faults ridiculed are distinctly understood to be 
exceptional. In these we find no indiscriminate charges 
against the wdiole race of women ; , but simply the faults 
of individuals exposed. But for those satires, or rather 
those infamous libels, which, occasionally with expres- 
sions of apparent reservation, aim, none the less, to place 
all women on the same level, we can regard them only 
as productions of the greatest depravity either of the 
heart or the head. Such writers must speak against 
their own consciences, for they contravene the senti- 
ments of Nature herself. Or, if they are really sincere 


and believe what tliey write, we can only conclude that 
there are monsters among minds as there are among 

Possibly, a spirit of revenge may occasionally incite 
an author to eject such venom. I can imagine that his 
aim may be to visit upon the whole sex the misconduct 
of some worthless individual: at least, I can conceive no 
better reason for so discreditable a proceeding. 

But, in condemning this extreme, we endeavour also 
to avoid its opposite. While I defend the fair sex, I 
do not desire to become their panegyrist, still less their 
flatterer. Far from thus attaining the end I have in 
view, I should but give occasion for impertinence, and 
confirm the voluntary skeptic in his pretended incre- 

I believe that it is no violation of the rules of justice 
and equity, to maintain the equality of virtues and of 
vices in the two sexes placed in comparison. Although 
the Creator has assigned to man and woman certain dis- 
tinctive qualities which determine the vocation of each — 
strength and courage, for example, belonging properly 
to man, as beauty, gentleness, and modesty, to woman — 
it is quite evident that both equally concur to one and 
the same end, that is, the happiness, benefit, and delight 
of society. It is equally true, again, that in both are to 
be found vicious individuals ; but to pretend that women 
are worse, more vicious in their especial sphere, than 
men are in theirs, is to advance an untenable proposition 
— that is to say, a calumny. 

There are to be found too many proud and arrogant 
men, puffed up with the prerogatives that seem to belong 
to their sex, as the cultivation of the arts and sciences, 
the right of government, of enacting laws, and the like, 
who claim to concentrate in themselves, to unite in their 
individual persons, all the advantages that are diffused 
over the race. These men look upon the female sex 
with a certain air of haughtiness. To observe them and 
listen to their reasonings, women have been created only 
for their pleasure. Take from woman this small merit 
which they are willing to allow her, and she will cease 
to be good for anything; she is a weak creature, fickle, 
utterly incapable of solid reasoning; in a word, designed 
only for the continuation of the species. It is a great 


thing that they allow her a soul, and do not condemn 
her to future annihilation. 

Here I advance, in the name of the Order, and without 
any fear of contradiction, that our respect for the fair 
sex w^ill always lead us to support all their rights. We 
honour their virtues, we cherish the sweetness of their 
society, we exercise forbearance towards their foibles 
and failings, confessing that we need all their forbearance 
towards our own. 

This being once for all settled, the ladies will not the 
less think they have a right to complain of the separation 
that the Order places betw^een them and us — a separation 
which consists in not initiating them into our mysteries, 
and leaving them without hope of ever participating in 

We will give them a proof of the estimation in which 
we hold them, by rendering to them good and just 
reasons for their exclusion. 

It cannot be from any apprehension that they would 
some day divulge our secrets. Whatever fools and silly 
jesters may say, we frankly acknowledge that discretion 
and indiscretion belong to human nature in general, and 
are equally common to both sexes, and that we could 
not, in this respect, incline the balance to either side. 
We must, then, look for other causes to justify the Order 
with regard to this exclusion. 

I. If the Order, notwithstanding all its care and pre- 
caution, has not always been able to escape calumny — 
if the fact that no woman was admitted into its assem- 
blies, which should have been a sufficient answer to all 
suspicion of irregularity, has sometimes only served to 
render us suspected of the greatest profligacy — not be- 
cause such ideas of our mysteries were really entertained, 
but because the malicious found their advantage in the 
accusation — if, I say, the Order, notwithstanding the 
purity of its principles and the integrity of its purpose, 
has not been able to ward off the assaults of slander, 
what would have been the case if ladies had been 
admitted to its assemblies and initiations ? Calumny in 
that case would have met with no restraint, and malice 
would have had free course. 

II. Let us suppose, for a moment, a Lodge composed 
of an equal number of the two sexes, and that the 


women are the wives of the men who form the other 
half: nothing could be imagined more regular or more 
modest than such an assembly, on the supposition that 
women were admitted to the Lodges; but, the mysteries 
of the Order continuing, the Lodge necessarily meeting 
with closed doors, should we escape slander? Vainly 
should we plead that, the Lodge being composed of hus- 
bands and wives in company of each other, they must 
naturally be mutual observers and guardians. This 
reasoning, however well founded, would not prevent the 
suspicion of a sort of community, the very idea of which 
is revolting; and are there not many who, for the sake 
of a jest, would disseminate this idea among the people 
at large ? 

III. By the very fact that the Order declares and 
acknowledges that it conceals a mystery from all the 
non-initiated, an individual must be free and independent 
to be in a condition to fulfill the duties necessary to be 
assumed, such as never to reveal this secret. Now, men, 
and men only, are thus free and independent. Woman, 
on the contrary, passes under the subjection and govern- 
ment of a husband — fortunate if she meets with a man 
honourable enough not to reduce her to slavery. 

This is not the place to inquire if men have rightfully 
assumed such a power over women, or if this claim is a 
mere usurpation. Enough that this authority of the 
man is real and acknowledged, and that the laws sustain 
him in its exercise. At least, every one will grant that 
religion assigns to the man a primacy in marriage, 
regarding him as chief of the family, subjecting all to 
him — the wife no less than the children. From this 
subordination the following consequences result : 

That a woman can never answer for her liberty through 
the whole period of her life ; for 

A girl, from her birth to her marriage, lives under 
subjection to her father and mother, or, in case of their 
death, to a guardian, till she attains her majority. 

Even then, although become her own mistress, she 
cannot answer for her heart ; and the liberty to which 
her age has entitled her may be, and naturally will be 
soon lost, by the engagements she will, probably, con- 
tract with a husband. Become mistress of a family, she 
is still in no condition to exercise her own will, but owes 


to her husband an account of her proceedings, especially 
whatever may appear to him in the slightest degree 
suspicious or secret : such an account she cannot refuse 
him, if he requests, it with kindness, provided she desires 
to preserve her husband's affection and confidence. 

A girl might, indeed, promise never to marry, and even 
make such a promise in good faith ; but could the Order 
rely that she would always be able to keep such an 
engagement ? and is it not quite possible that she might 
be in this respect herself deceived ? 

Suppose, however, this girl, for greater security, should 
enter a nunnery, take the veil, and thereby, under the 
indissoluble bonds of a sacred and solemn vow, engage 
herself to perpetual celibacy — would she then be better 
fitted for the Order? would her primitive vow, binding 
her to an entire submission to her spiritual superiors, 
permit her to take upon herself new obligations, especially 
as she could not know what such obligations might 
include? Would her spiritual superiors sufier this ? and, 
could she even do so without their knowledge, to what 
suspicions would she not be constantly subjected, both 
with regard to her faith and her morals ? And, moreover, 
v^'ould the life of the cloister permit her to avail herself 
of the right she had acquired — to attend the meetings 
of the Order ? 

Lastly, in the case of a widow, become a free agent 
by her widowhood, can she promise herself never to 
think of a new engagement? Suppose her young, would 
she not have every reason to mistrust such a resolution ? 
and if already of advanced age, would this be a security 
that she would never think of uniting herself to a second 
husband? Would not the example of thousands of 
widows, of fifty years old and upwards, give the Order 
perpetual occasion of mistrust ? 

When all these reasons are well examined, we see 
abundant cause for the exclusion of females from our 
mysteries; as well from what has been already said, as 
rom other consequences which naturally result from 
their condition; some of which I will briefly mention. 

To what vexations and persecutions would not a wife 
or a daughter be exposed, whose husband or father not 
only was not a member of the Order, but even enter- 
tained unfavourable ideas with regard to it, more espe- 


cially should she attend the assemblies? The father's 
mistrust, and the husband's jealousy, would then have 
full play; and the malice of other women, not them- 
selves initiated, and, above all, of any who had been 
rejected, would not remain without employment. 

And supposing that ladies, who should be thus situ 
ated, for prudential reasons should refrain from attending 
the Lodge, would it not suffice for a father or a husband 
to know of their initiation into the Order; or that they 
had attended the Lodge once or twice in their lives, to 
awaken scruples that would touch conjugal or paternal 
affection ? Plence would spring a perpetual desire to 
learn their secret ; a desire that would strengthen from 
the refusal to gratify it, and might possibly at last urge 
them to some act of violence. 

I am aware that a husband may occasionally be sub- 
jected to the ill humour of his wife should she happen to 
get information of his initiation. There are women who, 
to an insatiable curiosity, join a most intractable and 
unruly temper, and are the torment of their husbands. 
Nevertheless, there is no comparison between the two 
cases. However gentle and patient a husband may be, 
and to whatever extremity a wife may proceed with 
regard to him, both law and religion have given to the 
husband the full right to make his wife confine herself 
within the bounds of decency and propriety. 

I believe that, after what I have said, the ladies will 
readily allow that we do them full justice ; and that their 
exclusion from our Order is occasioned, not by our 
judging them unworthy of our mysteries, but solely by 
the dependence to which they are in so many ways ex- 

This being explained, I trust that they will generally 
grant us that esteem which those among them most 
enlightened and intelligent have never refused us. 


That it is highly impnident and even sinful to hazard initia- 
tion into an Order, one of whose known fundamental princi- 
ples it is never to reveal its Mysteries. 

It is quite true that this idea of imprudence or sin on 
the part of any one who ventures on initiation has some- 


times troubled even very sensible people. A wise man 
will never enter on an undertaking from which he is not 
well assured he will come out with honour, escape the 
censure of the world, and, above all, be free from the 
reproaches of his own conscience. This maxim is so 
true, and its observance so necessary, that it is by this 
rule that we usually form our estimate of a man's under- 
standing and judgment. We shall not, therefore, seek 
to overturn it, for our hearts would immediately re- 
establish it. We will only enquire if the maxim applies 
to those who seek initiation into our Order, and we will 
state the objection in all its force: — 
A wise man should never enter on an undertaking from 
which he is not assured he will come out with honour, 
without incurring the just censure of others, and, 
above all, without exposing himself to the reproaches 
of his own conscience. 
A man who applies to be received into Freemasonry is 
entirely ignorant what engagements he is about to 
Therefore such a man incurs all the risks we have men- 
tioned: therefore he does not act as a wise man: 
therefore he exposes himself to remorse of conscience. 
It will not be difficult to demonstrate that all this 
leaves us untouched : I only beg to be pardoned if I find 
myself compelled to glance at certain arguments which 
I have already adduced. 

I. I confess that the mystery of the Society is un- 
known ; I farther confess that the practices and ceremo- 
nies employed in initiations are equally unknown. But 
do these two considerations, perfectly true in one sense, 
prevent our seeing enough to know, that, however igno- 
rant we may be of the details of what is to be learned 
and practised on our introduction into the Order, we may 
be perfectly assured that nothing will be taught or done 
which will in the slightest degree offend the honour, 
innocence, or conscience of any individual ? Now, upon 
this certain foundation, can there be either sin or im- 
prudence in wishing to learn more, and applying for 
admission into a society against which no well founded 
reproach has ever been made? 

II. Before my own initiation, I made very serious 
reflections on what I was about to undertake. 1. I 


observed in the Society princes and magistrates of all 
ranks. There can, then, I said to myself, be nothing in 
the Society inconsistent with the inviolable fidelity we 
ovi^e to to the government ; otherwise these same au- 
thorities, who are initiated into the Order, would become 
its fii'st destroyers. 2. I saw in it clergymen of good 
character, irreproachable in morals and conduct : what, 
then, has Christianity to apprehend from the Order since 
I see, even in its bosom, those who are the most faithful 
supporters of religion? 3. Lastly, I saw in it priests 
of my own particular church, whence I might naturally 
conclude, as I have elsewhere remarked, that the Order 
does not seek to direct the consciences of Christians; 
that it leaves this right to the Church, to whom alone it 
appertains; but that it receives all Christians without 
taking upon itself to turn any any one of them aside 
from the profession of his faith, much less to inspire him 
with indifference or carelessness in religious matters; 
and I was confirmed in these ideas when I saw them all 
continuing in their former sentiments with the same zeal 
as before, and finally resign themselves to death with all 
the evidences of sincere faith. 

III. The number of sensible men whom I remarked 
in the Order, many of them by no means of a disposition 
to engage in anything ridiculous, much less contrary to 
sound morals, inspired me with confidence upon the 
initiation, still more by their example than by their 
words: and the behaviour of some Freemasons of ill- 
regulated lives and conduct, but called to mind that 
man is always man, and that some such must be found 
in all bodies and societies, especially those that are 

IV. The course of this Society, during the long period 
of its existence, is conclusive proof of its innocence. 
The antiquity of our Order is disputed, but, on this 
point, men are certainly in error: is it, then, certain 
that it has not formerly appeared with some glory? 
This, however, is not the place to argue this position, 
and I am willing to limit my remarks to the last twenty 
years, during which period it has greatly increased, and 
now counts its members by thousands. What shadow 
of wrong has been detected within it? Has it laid itself 
open to suspicion in any way whatever? And does not 


this new consideration throw light on my initiation and 
its consequences, even before my entrance into the 

Whence it follows, that if, strictly speaking, a candi- 
date does not exactly know what he is about to do, nor 
to what he will be expected to engage himself, it is, 
nevertheless, equally true, that he knows in a general 
way, without the least room for doubt, that he is about 
to attach himself to a blameless and honourable Society, 
a gentle, peace-loving Society, whose conduct alone forms 
its all-sufficient apology. 

From all this I conclude that no member of the Order 
is justly liable to the reproach of having blindly given 
himself up to engagements of which he knew neither 
the end nor the consequences; since the Order has been 
long and well enough known to have cleared itself from 
the suspicions its opponents have raised against it. And 
no great logical culture is needed to reason justly as to 
the consequences of such an engagement. A man of 
ordinary education, by the aid of good sense alone, will 
soon be convinced that he runs no risk whatever in an 
initiation which will associate him with a great number 
of persons whose religion, morals, and conduct, cannot 
be called in question. 





Those most inquisitive to discover the mystery of the 
Order, those vv^ho are most anxious to fathom it, are con- 
stantly deciding, in the conversations they hold with 
acknowledged Freemasons, in what this mystery con- 
sists and fixing it upon some particular point. It is this, 
they boldly assert, and can be nothing else ! Not that, 
after this pretended decision, and unhesitating persuasion, 
they are in less doubt than before. They make these 
assertions only to conceal a snare too gross to entrap 
any one. They imagine that we will angrily contradict 
them, and that, in the heat of argument, some word may 
escape which may at last determine them. Experience 
might long ago have taught them the vanity of such 
anticipations. However, that they may not accuse us 
of assumed indifference, let us examine their decisions, 
and propose to them in turn our difficulties on their rash 

Here we have an important advantage in the invio- 
lable secrecy of the Order as to what passes within the 
Lodges ; whilst those who hazard their decisions without 
knowledge, differ among themselves and fail to come to 
any agreement with regard to a secret so well kept. 

I believe I may, without unfairness to these anxious 
enquirers, reduce their guesses about the mystery of our 
Order to three principal positions. 

I. That there is an oath which preserves the secret; 
men being naturally repugnant to violate the 
sanctity of an oath. 
II. That there is no oath because there is no secret ; 
the pretended mystery being only a chimera of 
the imagination. 


III. That, if there is a mystery under oath, or even 
without oath, the dread of being assassinated, in 
case of any indiscretion, restrains all the members 
of the Order and forms them insensibly to a 
perpetual silence. 

These are the positions to which their decisions are 
reduced, at least those which seem to me the most 

As they cannot furnish the smallest proof of what 
they so boldly advance, I might very well be excused for 
leaving their decisions undecided, if the expression may 
be permitted, since they are not themselves in any way 
persuaded of what they maintain with so positive an 

Nevertheless, without being obliged to give them any 
account of what they can only learn through the process 
of initiation, we are at liberty to propose to them in our 
turn the following three questions or objections, to which 
we desire their answers. 


Propoiinded to those who say that there is an oath which 
Ijreserves the secret ; from the natural repugnance of men 
to violate the sanctity of an oath. 

If an oath is so infallible a means to secure the religi- 
ous observance of a secret, I ask how it has happened 
that princes have been so often betrayed, notwithstand- 
ing the precaution of the oath which they have always 
exacted from their subjects; more particularly from 
those to whom they have entrusted matters of import- 
ance? But much more; to the obligation of an oath 
they have added motives often much more powerful 
among men than the fear of offending God, and perilling 
their salvation. They have decreed against the violators 
of their oath, infamy, confiscation of property, the penalty 
of d«ath, often of a very cruel death, according to the 
exigence of the case. These penalties have been inflicted 
on transgressors whenever they have been detected ; un- 
less when flight or the clemency of the prince has 
rescued them from a punishment justly merited. Have 


these terrible examples ever prevented the existence of 
traitors from time to time? and has not every age pro- 
duced these shocking victims of avarice and the depra- 
vity of the human heart? 

If, then, the Fraternity relies on a solemn oath, binding 
its initiates, for the inviolable preservation of its secret, 
how can it flatter itself that this secret will never tran- 
spire, when it must of necessity be confided to so many 
initiates? How can the Society hope that an oath will 
for ever retain all its members in their duty ; and that 
in all times and under every trial they will have enough 
honour and religion to observe it? How, above all, can 
men expect such advantage from an oath, whilst they 
have not the resource which princes and magistrates 
alone have the right to employ? I mean the punishment 
of trangressors. 


Propounded to those loho assert that there is no oath, because the 
Order has no secret; the pretended mystery being only a 
chimera of the imagination. 

No, say another class of the inquisitive, there is no oath ; 
the pretended secret is nothing; and what need is there 
of an oath where there is no secret ? 

Another decision as weak and unsupported as the 
former. It is nothing ! The question is quite decided : 
but I would ask them to tell me at least how they 
understand this Nothing. 

Let us assist them to explain it, that we may leave 
them no room to charge us with unfairness. I suppose 
them to mean by this Nothing, that the whole mystery 
of the Order consists in a certain confraternity, very 
exactly observed ; and that what we name initiation or 
reception into the Order, in which the pretended 
secret is supposed to consist, is nothing more than a 
simple exhortation not to divulge the ceremonies em- 
ployed in these receptions, if, indeed, it is to be supposed 
that there are any ceremonies whatever, and to conceal 
the words and signs by which the initiated recognize 
each other in all the countries of the world, amid every 


variety of language, and that without having ever met 

If this is not what they mean by their Nothing, I con- 
fess that I do not understand them, since all allow that 
we have a peculiar language and signs. 

1 will suppose, for a moment, that this is all we mean 
by the secrets of the Order. I have shown in the former 
Question that an oath does not seem a very infallible 
means of concealing our secret ; that is to say, our 
language and signs. But if, as these men say, we have 
no oath, how is it that these signs and language have 
never yet been revealed ; that they are preserved among 
us alone, on the faith of simple promises, although 
entrusted to so great a number of men, among whom 
not a few have been unable to keep to themselves secrets 
on which their own reputation and interest have 
depended, the disclosure of which has caused them a 
thousand vexations. Whence I infer, that if our lan- 
guage and our signs have never been disclosed, and this 
truth is undeniable, and that hitherto the secret has been 
faithfully kept, whether under oath, or simple promise, 
or any other engagement that may be supposed, I infer, 
I say, that it would be no more difficult to keep the 
secret of the Order, if there is one beside the language 
and the signs, than it has been to keep secret the lan- 
guage and signs themselves. 

Those, therefore, who say that the secret of the Order 
is nothing, are reduced to a self-contradiction when they 
acknowledge a secret at least in the language and the 
signs. My objection being thus left in its full force, I 
call on them to tell me how it has happened that, either 
with an oath or without, this language and these signs 
have never transpired beyond the Order. 


Addressed to those who say that if there is in the Order a 
mystery, either with or without an oath, the fear of being 
assassinated, in case of iiidiscretion, restrains all the mem- 
hers of the Order, and insensibly forms them to a jperjpetual 

As, in truth, men have never hitherto been able to con- 
ceive that it was possible for an Order so widely spread 


to preserve its secret among so great a number of initi- 
ates, and that without having any rewards to offer as a 
recompense of fidelity, nor any authority to inflict penal- 
ties on the betrayers of the secret, having no means to 
bring an offender to trial and condemnation, nor any tri- 
bunal for this purpose in any country whatever, and 
never having taken any step tending the least in the 
world to encroach on the authority of magistrates, and 
being itself subject to them in temporal things, as to the 
Church in spiritual ; all this being clearly seen and 
received as an established fact, proved by the conduct of 
the Order at all times, they have been reduced, in order 
to explain the possibility of the preservation of the 
secret, to imagine that it is the fear of assassination 
which has wrought this effect, and for ever closed 
the mouths of the members against the least indiscre- 

But still more : to give colour to this black calumny, 
some have gone so far as to say that among those who 
have been from time to time assassinated, either in the 
forests, or at night in cities, or who have been found 
drowned in the rivers, there may have been some whose 
indiscretion had rendered them victims of the Order: a 
vengeance which might be safely inflicted on the viola- 
tors of their oath, since such murders would naturally 
be attributed either to robbers or to some secret enemy, 
and thus the Order would be unsuspected. 

It is inconceivable that honourable men should enter- 
tain ideas so unworthy of humanity in general, much 
more in particular that they should so suspect a Society 
among whose members are so many persons of undoubted 
probity and piety. Yet, as the charge is a very grave 
one, and as there may be weak-minded individuals who 
will suffer themselves to be abused by men, who, merely 
desiring to divert themselves with their scruples, by 
instilling into their minds ideas, the futility of which is 
to themselves well known, it may be well to prove how 
impossible it is that the Fraternity should have preserved 
its secret by such sanguinary means, and that the em- 
ployment of such means would have been the very way 
to bury the Order under its own ruins by a just retribu- 
tion, and to destroy in a brief time the very existence 
of its secret. 


In reply to this detestable suspicion, I will first lay 
down the following positions : — ■ 

1, Either the Order, at my reception, having the design 
to assassinate me if I reveal its secret, yet does not 
inform me that such will be my punishment should I be 
wanting to my engagements. 

2. Or the Order not only entertains the design in such 
case of punishing me by assassination, having no other 
means to employ, but candidly informs me that such is 
the \<i\v against the violation of the oath, and that such 
\^ ill bi' my end should I commit any indiscretion. 

First, If, although in the Order, I do not know that 
a5;sassination is the punishment in case of such revela- 
tion, here is a mystery concealed from me, and I have 
already proved that it is impossible that some of the 
members of the Order should possess a secret to the 
perpetual exclusion of the other members. But, sup- 
posing the possibility that I have been kept in ignorance 
of so terrible a danger, it is not, then, the fear of assassi- 
nation that restrains me. If there is no threat there can 
be no fear. 

Secondly, If, on the contrary, I am informed that, in 
case of indiscretion, my end will be to perish miserably, 
and so that no one shall ever discover the authors of my 
death, I should have a very easy way of w^arding off the 
blow, namely, to make the whole Lodge responsible, and 
that from the first moment that I had suffered the secret 
to escape me. 

To explain my idea, I suppose for a moment that a 
Freemason has divulged his secret, whether under the 
mfluence of wine, or from a love of talking, or from 
treasonable motives, or from some other cause, it matters 
not what, would he not immediately seriously reflect on 
the perpetual danger he must thereafter incur? He has 
gone too far to recede ; the desire to preserve his life 
will lead him to consummate his treason. He knows 
that the Order, as such, holds no legal authority, and 
cannot employ the secular arm. What, then, will this 
ex-Freemason do ? He will implore the aid of the 
magistrate, and, to merit his full confidence, will disclose 
to him the secret from one end to the other. He will 
put himself under the magistrate's protection, by declar- 
ing his apprehensions and his danger j he will make each 


member of his Lodge, and of all the Lodges around, 
responsible for his life, naming them all individually ; 
and, lest time should bring about forgetful ness of a 
declaration, on which, for the future, his safety must 
depend, he will be careful to renew it at least every 
year. And let no one say that such an expedient is far- 
fetched; on the contrary, it naturally presents itself; 
and every one knows that the fear of death will awaken 
the intellect, even of the simplest man, to search for 
means of escape. It is, then, altogether ridiculous to 
allege that the dread of a tragic death causes the pre- 
servation of the secret. 

To imagine that, among those who have come to a 
tragic end, there may be some whose deaths have been 
brought about by their having made revelations detri- 
mental to the Order, is the most ridiculous idea that 
ever took possession of the mind; for, if these people 
revealed the secret, why is it still unknown ? If the 
secret is still unknown beyond the limits of the Order, 
how can we believe that any one has lost his life for 
having disclosed it?v 

And here it would be wrong to accuse one of seeking, 
by these three questions, to mystify the reader, since I 
leave them unanswered. If the three positions on which 
I base my questions were of my own invention, did we 
not constantly hear them in the mouths of the inquisi- 
tive, there might be reason to suppose that a love of 
jesting had urged me to raise these difficulties in order 
to keep the reader in breath. But, as it is undeniably 
true that we every day hear such contradictory decisions, 
I have a perfect right, in my turn, to examine them 

Let us inquire how it has happened that, while all the 
religions of the world, good or bad, as well as all parties, 
have had their persecutors, the Order of Freemasons has 
at all times been exempt, at least with regard to indi- 
viduals. Does not this truth seem to imply some laxity 
of principle in the Order in general, as well as want of 
zeal in its members? I desire to pass over no serious 
difficulty that may be raised against us, that I may not 
be called upon to return to the question. 

Every party in the world has had its antagonists and 
opponents : when opposition has ceased, party was at 


an end. Of the different religions that have appeared in 
the various ages of the world, and of all those which 
still subsist, no one has escaped the most strenuous op- 
position, the most open persecution. The true religion, 
especially, has ever had more attacks to sustain than 
falsehood and imposture. 

Was not Judaism, at its birth, even before its full 
development, in danger of perishing through the jealousy 
of the Pharaohs? And in later ages, how many assaults 
were made upon that ancient faith, the mother of Chris- 
tianity, by its own idolatrous kings, by Antiochus, and 
other Syrian monarchs, and by the power of the Romans ! 

The Christian Church was, in a manner, bathed in its 
own blood for three centuries. The blameless life of its 
first teachers, the exalted virtues of its earliest saints, 
the excellence of its doctrines, the purity and beauty of 
its morality, all supported by the most astonishing and 
unquestioned miracles, were unable to calm the rage of 
persecution, which never ceased till repressed by the 
authority of the emperors, when at length they rendered 
homage to the Cross, and gloried in a name which had 
hitherto been the object of their contempt and hatred. 

If we carefully examine what forms the essential 
character of every religion, we shall find that each, 
claiming to be better founded than all others, looks upon 
itself as the sole depository of the keys of the Kingdom 
of Heaven. Hence the natural desire to extend itself, 
to establish itself on the ruins of all the others ; at one 
time by means of persuasion, at another by force, or by 
favour of the laws, and not unfrequently by all these 
means united. Do we not see even those Churches which 
profess the greatest moderation, as soon as they get the 
power on their side, hold all others in dependence and 
subjection ? It is almost impossible to believe that they 
will ever think or act otherwise, influenced as they are 
by the powerful motive of saving the souls of men. 

It is, then, this unavoidable desire of each to advance 
itself at the expense of others, which at all times has 
occasioned so many persecutions. 

From this inconsistency, our Order has always been 
free, because its system and its views have been such as 
to excite no opposition. It has never made pretensions 
to divine institution ; it acknowledges that its origin is 


purely human, and thus it in no way interferes with 
religion. Although it forms an organised body, as it 
seeks not to dissolve or annihilate other bodies, it has 
never drawn upon itself their jealousy or hatred. Its 
views do not extend beyond the present life, and it leaves 
to each of its members the care of his own conscience, 
permitting each to work out his own salvation according 
to the principles of the religion in which he has been 
educated. It does not strive to draw any one within its 
pale ; it cares not to strengthen its party, readily ac- 
knowledging that a man may be virtuous independently 
of the Order. Lastly, it never, as a body, exercises any 
party influence, each member remaining at entire liberty 
to do in such matters as his duty and conscience dictate. 
These are the causes which have procured for the 
Order such unbroken and universal tranquillity. Those 
potentates who have been least favourably disposed to it, 
have never carried their opposition farther than the pro- 
hibition to assemble in Lodges. No member of the 
Order has ever been brought to trial as such, and no one 
has ever been banished, imprisoned, or deprived of his 
property, as a punishment for being connected with it. 
It is, then, quite clear that the tranquillity which the 
Order has uniformly enjoyed, cannot be regarded as the 
consequence of any unworthy negation in accordance 
with the temper and spirit of the times. 

A Proof of the Purity and Innocence of the Order drawn 
from the geyiei-al silence of the dying. 

I think this last proof stronger than any of the pre- 
ceding, for it is in the last moments of our life, when 
gathered into ourselves, on the eve of being called to 
render an account of all our past conduct at the bar of 
God, that the mask must inevitably fall, and the hypo- 
crite and sinner accuse himself without reserve. Every 
one knows with what strictness one Christian commu- 
nity especially requires exactness and detail in the con- 
fession of its penitents ; above all, when they are 
at the approach of death. I am aware that the con- 
fessor is bound to conceal the confession ; and I am 
persuaded that this obligation is religiously observed. 
But this secrecy would be very far from an effectual 
concealment of the iniquities of the Order. A strict and 


pious confessor, ill satisfied with a private confession 
which related to crimes spread through the whole body 
of the Society, would most assuredly require of the dying 
man a public avowal of all the evil he might know or 
suspect in the matter. Indeed, could the penitent be 
well disposed for the other world, if, before quitting this, 
confining himself to his individual repentance, he should 
neglect or refuse to employ the most effectual means of 
turning others aside from the snare into which he had 
unwarily fallen, and could so imperfect a confession 
obtain him absolution? 

In other Christian communions, even those which seem 
least rigid in the details of confession, men cannot but 
believe themselves called upon to enter into certain 
particulars, according to their different vocations, and 
the varied circumstances of their lives, and especially in 
the article of death. To this the directors of their con- 
science are careful to exhort the dying, and should we 
see these different Christians belonging to the Order pass 
into the other world in such perfect tranquillity on this 
point, were they combined to violate that first principle 
of religion, to cut up evil at its roots. 

Reply to those who demand of us why we affect such Mystery. 

I. It is a sort of injustice to ask us this question. To 
call on us to state the reasons which induce us to the 
observance of a secret impenetrable to those who are not 
in the Order, particularly if this mystery is one of the 
fundamental supports of the Order, is in some sort to 
require us to unveil the mystery itself. 

II. If the effects of this mystery have been invariably 
good, if the Order has never departed from the principles 
of religion and justice, and this has been sufficiently 
proved, the mystery can contain nothing but what is in 
accordance with the effects that have proceeded from it. 
This being the case, the secret ought to cause no scruple, 
nor to give offence to any ; nothing but an immoderate 
curiosity can complain or murmur on this account. 

III. After all, this mystery is not beyond reach. The 
great number of persons to whom it is daily entrusted 
on their initiation into the Order, in so many different 
countries, proves that, far from wishing to conceal it, we 
unhesitatingly spread it on all sides without apprehend- 


ing that it will be betrayed. A mystery communicated 
to so many persons of all states, conditions, and charac- 
ter, hardly deserves to be called a mystery. True, it 
continues a mystery for those not initiated into the 
Order ; but, as initiation is refused to no honourable and 
worthy man, most of those who raise this difficult} 
may, if they please, in a short time, be fully enlightene 
by means of initiation. But the desire must, however, 
be of their own free will, for the Order never seeks to 
draw any one ; but, on the contrary, has always exhibit- 
ed the greatest circumspection in the acceptance of 

IV. Finally, to gratify, in some sort, the inquisitive, I 
will ask them if the very fact of a secret preserved for 
so long a time by so many different people, in so invio- 
lable a manner, does not render the Society more worthy 
of public attention and estimation ? And if this effect, 
so advantageous to the Order, is not a sufficient reason 
for maintaining the secret ? 

Reply to the qtiestion : What is the Purpose of the Order ? 

I think the public has a right to ask this question, and 
that we are bound to state what are the advantages of 
belonging to the Order ; and I suppose the chief advan- 
tages to be the eight following : — 

I. The Order unites in the spirit of peace and fraternity 
all its members, in whatever communion they may have 
been brought up, and to whatever party they may be- 
long ; so that, whilst each remains faithful and zealous 
in his own principles, he entertains none the less affection 
for Brethren differing from him in opinion and mode of 
worship, but all entertaining the same hope of immor- 
tality, the same reliance on the eternal atonement of a 
God, who has condescended to die for their redemption ; 
a union the more worthy of admiration, that it would 
appear impossible, did not the constant experience of the 
Order prove the reality of its existence — a union of the 
heart, such as the wisest and most pious men have always 
desired, since a perfect unity of opinion is not to be 
hoped for 

n. The Order makes so many Brothers of the great 
and the humble. It brings them together without con- 
founding either wealth or rank : and thus has avoided 


the rock on which so many Christians of latter times 
have fallen, that of aiming to establish a community of 
goods among all men — or, at least, among all of their 
own sentiments — a thing utterly impracticable so soon as 
the body becomes numerous. Here the great man 
condescends to become the Brother of the poor man, and 
publicly to honour him with this title, aiding and pro- 
tecting him on all proper occasions. But if the great 
man learns to condescend to him of low degree, the 
latter is early taught not to be puffed up, not to abuse a 
confraternity so honourable to himself, so suited to console 
him for the mediocrity of his condition ; and not to for- 
get what is due to his superior in rank, in birth, and 
wealth. He employs himself with the greater zeal and 
fidelity in his service, because he feels he is working for 
a Brother, and for a Brother not ungrateful. And all, 
both rich and poor, are under mutual obligations to con- 
tribute, each according to his station, towards the com- 
mon welfare and happiness ; and very seldom it is that 
we see this obligation unregarded. 

III. All those illustrious orders, instituted by the 
various sovereigns, are the portion of the great alone, 
and out of the reach of the humble. Our Order restores 
to these the equality, by admitting them as readily aa 
the most distinguished men. 

IV. Every member of the Order is entitled to admission 
into any Lodge in the world — an advantage which, 
without more particular recommendations, procures to 
its possessor a ready means of introducing himself to a 
large body of honourable men, and which, in case of un- 
forseen misfortune — as robbery, shipwreck, or the like — • 
enables him to find assistance among his Brethren, till he 
has had time to recover himself, and to draw from his 
own talents means for his subsistence ; or, if he is in a 
strange land, and has resources in his own country, till 
he cq,n obtain from thence what he needs to enable him 
to pursue the object he has in view. 

V. The pleasure of recognizing Brethren, without ever 
having met them before, even in a foreign country, of 
whose language we are ignorant, and that by means oi 
a language and signs universally employed in the Order; 
a language and signs which, at the same time, serve to 
distinguish a Brother from a man who would falsely 
assume the title. 


VI. The opportunity of learning, in a very short time, 
the signs and expressions which constitute this sort of 
universal language — a resource which suffices to make 
us recognized and understood in any part of the world 
where Brethren of the Order are to be found, although 
in a country with whose language we are unacquainted. 

VII. A still more general advantage is, that whilst, in 
certain respects, the unity and fraternity extend no 
farther than to Brethren of the Order, we profess, at the 
same time, to aid and succour all other men, so far as our 
means permit, without distinction of religion or country, 
in proportion to the necessities of the unfortunate. 

VIII. Lastly, the duties most obligatory upon us are, 
1. The practice of our duties towards God, each according 
the general prescriptions of Christianity, and, in particular, 
those of the Christian communion to which we severally 
belong. 2. An inviolable fidelity towards the govern- 
ment, whether as native or adopted citizens, or as merely 
residents in the state, enjaying public safety under 
shadow of its protection. 3. The love and care of our 
own families. 4. A charity ever ready to do good to our 
neighbour, under which title we comprehend, as taught 
by Christianity, all mankind, our enemies not excepted. 


From all I have just said, I proceed to draw .two con- 
sequences. First, That to cast blame, or odious sus- 
picions, or calumnies, whether with regard to religion or 
to the fidelity which every one owes to the government 
under which he lives, upon an Order that has never given 
the least occasion for them, is to sin against the laws of 
charity, of justice, and of duty ; and, secondly, that those 
who withhold their approbation from the Order, because 
they are ignorant of its secret, ought at least to go no 
farther, and to suspend their judgment, were it only 
from the consideration, that it is not to be supposed that 
so many excellent men would choose to build upon a 
chimera, and, for a brief period, to adopt vain, useless, or 
dangerous principles ; and all for the single purpose of 
distinguishing themselves from the rest of mankind, and 
imposing on the public, after having been themselves the 
first deceived. 
















S. G. I. G. 330 ; 




" Alas ! that e'er a cloud should rise, 
To dim the glories of thy name ; 
Or little jealousies divide 
The souls by kindred vows allied. 
But see ! while thus our rites we blend, 
The mingled sacrifice ascend. 
And borne to heaven in one united flame 
Chase every ling'riug shadow from the skies." 

Waller Eodwell Wright 

"Previ<-)ua to the commencement of the eighteenth century, the Royal Ai-ch 
has not oeen ti-aced with any plausibility. But it is to be hoped that some one 
will take up the subject; for if the Royal Arch can be proved to have been in- 
vented so lately even as two hundred years ago, it must be considered as a 

modern degree If it be really ancient, the records of one or more of 

its many Lodges or Chapters may establish its long existence in England as 
easily as in the case of St. John's Masonry. But, whatever be the result, let the 
iflvestigation be conducted with accuracy, and a desire to clear up the truti." 
Freemasons' Quarterly Review 

Stereotyped by 


Printed and Bound by 



Since writing the following letter, I have been favoured by Brother 
Willoughby, of Birkenhead, with a sight of a very old floor-cloth 
painted on silk, belonging to a Royal Arch Chapter in the city of 
Chester, and used only a very few years after the degree was admitted 
into the system of constitutional Masonry. This ancient document 
— (size 22 inches by 18 inches) — which I have thought of sufficient 
importance to present to my readers in a lithograph, offers a confirm- 
ation of the opinion expressed in the ensuing pages respecting the 
transfer of the latter portion of the third degree to the Royal Arch. 
Here we have an arch and keystone, the latter not di-awn, but remain- 
ing in its place. The sun darting its rays obliquely into the arch, 
needs no explanation. Upon an arched fillet in the centre are the 
words £:N APXH EN AOFOI ; " In the beginning was the Word ;" 
and beneath, in the centre of the floor-cloth, a broad circle contain- 
ing the interlaced triangles and a central sun, to represent the mys- 
terious Name or Word. Below, in an inferior situation, on three 
fillets, are the words, Solomon, King of Israel ; Hiram, King of Tyre ; 
and Hiram, the widow's son, at length, in the Hebrew character. 
Several masonic emblems which were formerly attached to the third 
degree, are disposed in order; viz., the golden candlestick, the table 
>f shew-bread, the pot of manna and of incense, Aaron's rod, &c., all 
of which were appendages to the Tabernacle, and typical of the 
Christian dispensation. 

The Christian fathers interpreted these symbolical appendages 
thus : — the golden candlestick signified Christ, as the time Light by 
which his church is enlightened. Thus Gregory, in Ezek., Hom. vi., 
says, "No one can be understood by the candlestick but the Saviour 
of mankind." And Bede adds, "The shaft of the candlestick is 
symboHcal of Christ, the head of the church." And Ferus more 
expressly affirms, that "Christ is the candlestick, who is the sup- 
porter of the church." It will be unnecessary to notice the inac- 
curacy of the number of fights in the candlestick before us. The 
table of shew-bread symbolized the family of Christ, nourished and 
fed by him. The bread typified the true bread of fife, Christ Jesus; 
the number of loaves, the whole Israel of God who are fed by his 


word; and by tlie crown of the table is signified the hope of ever- 
lasting life, where we shall sit down at the table of Christ in heaven. 
The pot of manna was an emblem of Christ, as the giver of true food 
for our souls ; and Aaron's rod that budded, was a type of Christ's 
resurrection, whose body revived, and as it were flourished out of 
the grave. The censor of incense, was also a type of Christ, through 
whom we offer up our prayers ; and the burning incense denotes the 
prayers of holy men : for David said, " Let my prayer be as incense," 
(Ps. cxli., 2). In the floor-cloth the pot of incense is surrounded by 
a halo of fight, to show that Christ is that covering cloud under 
whose shadow we are defended from the heat and storms of tempta- 

Now, the very existence of these emblems in a Royal Arch floor- 
cloth, to which degree they are incongruous, and not in any respect 
appficable, betrays the source from whence the degree was drawn. 
And hence it was that Brother Duiickerley, and others, who grafted 
the degree on to modern Masonry, very judiciously weeded these em- 
blems from it, and restored them to the third degree, whence they had 
been inconsiderately divorced, to the manifest injury of both ; and a 
copious explanation of them was incorporated into the third lecture, 
that the application might be legitimatized, and their direct reference 
permanently fixed into the degree, so that no further doubt might 
exist about their true masonic reference. I place some stress upon 
this point, because this primitive floor-cloth is an existing fact which 
it would be difficult to overturn. I am further inclined to think that 
the fabricators of the Royal Arch intended it to be a Christian degree, 
not only for the above reasons, but because they adopted the Chris- 
tian emblems s^ and |I| as its legitimate insignia. And I have in 
my possession a fragment of an old Royal Arch lecture, which con- 
tains the following passage : — "A Royal Arch Chapter is called the 
Grand and Royal Lodge, in verification of the prophecy of Jacob 
that the sceptre should not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from 
between his feet until Shiloh come." And again — "The three 
Great Lights represent the Subfime Word in three different points 
of view ; but more particularly that superior light which shone forth 
in the Gospel Revelation, when the mystery of the Trinity was pub- 
licly displayed at the baptism of Christ." And in another place we 
have this remarkable explanation: — "The reason why we enter the 
Chapter upon the Holy Bible and the interlacing equilateral tri- 
angles, refers to the Roll of the law which was found at the building 
of the second temple. This roll represented the Old Testament ; and 
the equilateral triangles the New Testament, or, in other words, the 


Trinity in Unity." And besides tliis, ki an original formula of the 
Order, we find the following passage : 

" In the beginning was the Word, 
And the Word was with God, 
And the Word was God." 

A dissertation on the three diagrams under the centre arch would 
occupy more space than can be conveniently assigned to it here ; and, 
therefore, I must leave the interpretation of them, for the present, to 
every Brother's own judgment. At some future period, I may be 
induced to renew the subject, for this primitive floor-cloth is of suf- 
ficient importance to merit a more extended illustration than my 
present limits will allow. 

G. 0. 


My dear Sir and Brother, 

Your last letter to me was particularly interesting, and 
I am not without hope that I shall be able to satisfy your 
enquiries on the abstruse subject of the origin of the 
English Royal Arch. I need not tell you that there are 
in Freemasonry several problems sub juclice which have 
exercised the ingenuity of the Brethren in all ages of its 
existence, as an institution professedly speculative. Such 
as, whether Freemasonry was introduced into Europe by 
the gypsies?^ — Whether it can be correctly identified 
with Rosicrucianism ?^ — Whether it be, or how it is, 

' Mr, Clincli boldly aflSrmsthe fact. The opinion is repeated in De 
Pauw's Egypt. This author observes. " Every person who was not 
guilty of some pubHc crime could obtain admission to the lesser mys- 
teries. Those vagabonds called Egyptian priests in Glreece and 
Italy, required considerable sums for initiation ; and their successors 
the gypsies practice similar mummeries to obtain money. And thus 
was Freemasonry introduced into Europe." 

^ There is an essay in the London Magazine for January, 1824, to 
prove the identity of Freemasonry and Eosicrucianism, and their 
modern origin ; and the writer concludes that " though Eosicrucianism 
is not Freemasonry, yet the latter borrowed its form from the former." 
An American Anti-Mason endeavours to propagate the same opinion. 
He says, "the Eosicrucian mania sprung up in G-ermany, A. d. 1610, 
and nearly overspread Christendom. This puff of indefinable extra- 
vagance originated from the writings of John Valentine Andrea, a 
celebrated theologian of Wurtembui-g, who amused himself with tales 
of spiritual wonder, and of mystical glory, as a literary hoax, in the 
style of Baron Munchausen's wonderful adventures. The visionaiy 
minds of that day took his work in earnest. They claimed for the 
Eosy Cross philosophy what is now particularly claimed for Free- 
masonry." It is believed in Germany that Freemasonry originated 
with the Eose Croix. The Baron de Gleichen says that the Masons 
were united with the Eose Croix in England under King Arthur. I 
suppose he considers the Knights of the Eound Table to be of this 
Order. The Baron de Westerode gives as his opinion that the Eose 
Croix was promulgated in the eastern parts of Eui-ope in 1188, for tiie 


connected with Templaiy?^ — Whether the numerous 
foreign degrees, called Ecossais, were really derived from 
Scotland?^ &c. And, as the solution of these problems 

propagation of Clu-istiauity, and that it was received in Scotland 
luider the ■appellation of the Order of Eastern Masons, and contained 
tlie secrets of all the occult sciences; and that it found its way into 
England iu 1196, that it consisted of tliree degrees, and its emblems 
were a pair of golden compasses suspended from a white ribbon, as a 
symbol of purity and wisdom : the sun, the moon, a double triangle 
with the letter x ; and the Brethren wore a gold ring, with the ini- 
tials I. A. A. T., (Ignis, Aer, A.qua, Terra). 

^ Eamsay, Hundo, and many other innovators, founded their sys- 
tems on the postulate that Freemasonry was a branch of Templary. 
BaiTuel was very positive on this point, and all the arguments which 
he has used to viUfy Freemasonry in his History of Jacobinism, are 
expressly founded upon it. 

* It is curious to observe how diversified the seventy degrees of 
the, so called, Scotch Masonrjr are ; and I subjoin a catalogue of 
them for the information of the curious Mason. Novice Ecossais; 
Maitre Ecossais ; Parfait Ecossais ; Parfait Maitre Anglais Ecossais ; 
Ecossais Parisien ; Rite Ecossais ; Ecossais Anglais ou des Freres 
alnes ; Ecossais Eouge ; Ecossais d' Angleterre ; Ecossais de Lyon ; 
Grand Ecossais ; Ecossais Fran^ais ; Chevalier Ecossais ; Ecossais 
Triuitaire ; Parfait Ecossais ; Ecossais Trinitaire, ou Globe des 
Grands Maitres; Commandeurs du Temple ; Ecossais Trinitaire, ou 
puissant Grand Maitre de I'Ordre de la Sainte Trinite ; Ecossais Su- 
blime Anglais ; Ecossais d'Alcidony ; Ecossais de MontpelUer ; Ecos- 
sais de Paris ; Ecossais de Dunkerque ; Ecossais Egyptien; Ecossais 
de Prusse ; Ecossais de Messine ; Ecossais de Naples ou de Sicile ; 
Ecossais d' Angers ; Ecossais de Clermont ; Ecossais Architecte par- 
fait ; Ecossais de I'Anneau ; Ecossais d'Heredom ; Grand Architecte 
Ecossais ; Grand Architecte Anglais Ecossais ; Ecossais fideles ou de 
la Vieille Bru; Grand Patriarche Ecossais ; Grand Ecossais de Saint 
Andre d'Ecosse; Ecossais de Saint Andre d'Ecosse; Ecossais de 
Saint Andre du Chardon ; Grand Ecossais Patriarche ; Grand Ecos- 
sais des Patriarches ; Illustre Architecte Ecossais ; Subhme Ecossais 
de la G. L. du Prince Edward ; Sublime Ecossais ou la Jerusalem 
celeste ; Ecossais de St. George ; Ecossais Purificateur ; Ecossais de 
Toulouse ; Ecossais Vert ; Ecossais Sublime Purificateur ; Ecossais 
des Quarante ; Ecossais des petits appartements ; Ecossais des fils 
atnes ; Ecossais de Franville ; Ecossais de la Quarantaine ; Ecossais 
des trois j.j.j. (incounus) ; Grand Ecossais ou Grand Elu ; Rite Ecos- 
sais philosophique ; Grand Ecossais des Croisades ; Ecossais des 
Freres aines, ou du Triple Triangle ; Ecossais d'Hiram ; Grand 
Maitre Ecossais; Ecossais de la Lege du Prince Edward G. M. ; 
Ecossais Levite et Martyr ; Grand Ecossais de Yalachie, de Copen- 
hague et de Stockholm, ou Grade de I'Interieur ; Ecossais de la 
Voute sacree de Jacques VI. ; Ecossais des Loges miHtaires; Ecos- 
sais de Saint Andre ; Ecossais de Saint Andre, ou quatre fois res- 
pectable Maitre ; Ecossais de la perfection ; Dame Sublime Ecossais ; 
Ecossais de I'Hospice du Mont Thabor. 


depends upon evidence which is inaccessible, it admits of 
considerable doubt whether they will ever be elucidated 
with such absolute precision as to merit universal cre- 

But the most important question which remains open 
at the present day, is that about which you a.ppear desir- 
ous of my opinion, viz., the true origin of the English 
Koyal Arch degree. The enquiry has excited much 
attention, and a great anxiety appears to prevail amongst 
the Companions of tlie Order to ascertain truly the fact 
whether it be an ancient or a modern rite. The Ahiman 
Rezon says it has been held " from time immemorial ;" 
but this is rather an indefinite expression, and somewhat 
difficult to comprehend. Some have asserted more deter- 
minately that the Templars brought it from the Holy 
Land ; others that it was attached as a pendant to 
Templary in the sixteenth century ; and some believe 
that it was unknown before the year 1780. There exists 
sufficient evidence to disprove all these conjectures, and 
to fix the era of its introduction to a period which is 
coeval with the memorable schism amongst the English 
Masons about the middle of the last century. To ascer- 
tain the causes which gradually led to its establishment, 
we must take a brief view of the leading circumstances 
attending that division of the Fraternity into two great 
and independent bodies. 

It is commonly believed that the prevalence of schism 
in any institution is the fruitful parent of many evils, 
which cannot fail to detract from its purity and excel- 
lence. And so it is ; but the evil is not without its por- 
tion of good. Experience teaches that if the members of 
an institution become apathetic, nothing is so like'y to 
rouse them to a sense of duty as the existence of conflict- 
ing opinions, which produce a separation of interests, and 
divide them into two adverse sections ; each of which, 
like the self-multiplying polypus, will frequently become 
as strong and prosperous as the parent institution. This 
is peculiarly the case in religion. Separation, and the 
establishment of new sects, have generally been a prolific 
source of proselytism ; and many a Christian may trace 
his conversion from a state resembling the darkest hea- 
thenism to the spirit of party, and the curiosity of search- 
ing for something new, stimulating, and attractive. In 


Freemasonry, from the same causes, former feelings are 
revived and brought into operation, which enliven the 
lukewarm zeal, and convert the most quiescent member 
into an active partisan. Like a gentle breeze directed on 
the embers of an expiring fire, schism fans the dying 
apathy of the inert, and gives a new impetus to his 
thoughts, words, and actions. 

Some such results as these attended the schism which 
agitated the Fraternity of Free and Accepted Masons 
during the greater part of the eighteenth century. The 
jealousies which it excited, and the divisions and heart- 
burnings which it produced, have now subsided. Thirty 
years of peaceful union have extinguished all that un- 
appeasable hostility which marked its progress ; and the 
historian may now venture on the details without incur- 
ring the hazard of exciting an angry feeling either in one 
party or the other, by faithfully unfolding the circum- 
stances that gave rise to the secession, and attended its 
course till it was ultimatly absorbed in the great body 
of English Freemasonry, at the re-union in 1813. 

To make the subject intelligible, it will be necessary to 
revert to the earliest times of Masonry in England. Passing 
over the Druids, and the G-rand Mastership of St. Alban, 
which are unconnected with the question at issue, we find 
in an old masonic manuscript the following important 
passage: — "Though the ancient records of the Brother- 
hood in England were many of them destroyed or lost in 
the wars of the Saxons and Danes, yet King Athelstan, 
the grandson of King Alfred the Great, a mighty archi- 
tect, the first anointed King of England, and who trans- 
lated the Holy Bible into the Saxon tongue, a. d. 930, 
when he had brought the land into rest and peace, built 
many great works, and encouraged many Masons from 
France, who were appointed overseers thereof, a,nd 
brought with them the Charges and regulations of the 
Lodges, preserved since the Roman times ; who also pre- 
vailed with the King to improve the Constitution of the 
English Lodges according to the foreign model. That 
the said King's brother. Prince Edwin, being taught 
Masonry, and taking upon him the charges of a Master 
Mason, for the love he had to the said Craft, and the 
honourable principles whereon it is grounded, purchased 
a free charter of King Athelstan for the Masons; having 


a correction among themselves, as it was anciently ex- 
pressed, or a freedom and power to regulate themselves, 
to amend what might happen amiss, arid to Jiold a yearly 
communication and general assembly. That accordingly 
Prince Edwin summoned all the Masons in the realm to meet 
him ill a congregation at York, who came and composed 
a general Lodge, of which he was Grrand Master; and 
having brought with them all the writings and records 
extant, some in Greek, some in Latin, some in French, 
and other languages, from the contents thereof that 
assembly did frame the Constitution and Charges of an 
English Lodge, and made a law to preserve and observe 
the same in all time coming." 

From this document it is evident that Freemasonry in 
this island was first formally planted at York, which 
hence bears the same relation to English as Kilwnming 
does to Scottish Masonry, although its introduction into 
North Britain was two centuries later.^ A Grand Lodge 
was established at York, under the charter of Edwin, 
which maintained its functions, and asserted its suprema- 
cy down to the middle of the eighteenth century. The 
name of an ancient York Mason was considered honoura- 
ble in all ages ; and the precedency has been conceded to 
it, by both the sister countries, as being of greater an- 
tiquity than the KiKvinning Masons of Scotland, or the 
Carrickfergus ones of Hibernia. There is no evidence of 
a general Grand Lodge being held in any other place 
during the whole of the above period, nor has its autho- 
rity ever been made a subject of doubt or dispute. It is 
true its records have not been published, owing probably 

* It is probable that Masonry may have been introduced into Scot- 
land about the same time as Christianity, although there are great 
objections to that theory ; for in general the early buildings were not 
of stone, but of wood and wicker-work, and such as were of stone 
were extremely rude, and displayed no great knoAvledge of the Craft. 
I am, therefore, disposed to think that scientific Masonry, Freema- 
sonry, or anything worthy of being dignified with the name of archi- 
tectm-e, was not introduced into that country tiU the twelfth century. 
But even though Masonry may have been introduced at the same 
time as the Culdees. I cannot suppose that the Culdees were Free- 
masons ; and great injury has been done to the Order by attributing 
to it much not only incapable of proof, but of which there are strong 
grounds for suspecting the reverse. It appears to me that we have 
no proof of Freemasonry having esisted in Scotland before the year 


to the rash and mistaken zeal of some of its grand officers 
in 1720, who destroyed many of them, to prevent what 
they aifected to consider an act of desecration.*^ But 
there is sufiicient proof that its proceedings were uniform 
and regular, and the names of its Grand Masters are 
before us in the proj^er order of succession. 

During the reign of Queen Elizabeth, the government 
of the country attempted to interfere with its meetings, 
but v/ithout success. The queen was jealous of all 
secrets in which she was ^nable to participate, and she 
deputed an armed force, on St. John's day, in December, 
1561, to break up the annual G-rand Lodge. The Grand 
Master, Sir Thomas Sackville, received the Queen's offi- 
cers with great civility, telling them that nothing could 
give him greater pleasure than to admit them into the 
Grand Lodge, and communicate to them the secrets of 
the Order. He persuaded them to be initiated, and this 
convinced them that the system was founded on the 
sublime ordinances of morality and religion. On their 
return, they assured the Queen that the business of Free- 
masonry was the cultivation of morality and science, 
harmony and peace; and that politics and religion were 
alike forbidden to be discussed in their assemblies. The 
Queen was perfectly satisfied, and never attempted to 
disturb them again. 

The Fraternity was well governed by this Grand Lodge, 
which held its communications annually, and sometimes 
oftener ; and the Fraternity at large were eligible to as- 
semble in deliberation for the general benefit of the Craft. 
At these meetings the G-rand Masters and Officers were 
installed, and other routine business transacted. This 
old Grand Lodge was the conservator of the primitive 
Gothic Constitutions and Charges ; and under its benign 
patronage the works of art were executed which reflect 
such high credit on the Masons of the middle ages. 

The establishment of a Grand Lodge in London for the 
southern division of the island, in 1717, did not interfere 

6 Ware, in his Essay in the Archseologia, says that Nicholas S-tone 
destroyed many valuable papers belonging to the Society of Free- 
masons; and he adds, "perhaps his master, Inigo Jones, thought tliat 
the new mode, though dependent on taste, was independant on sci- 
ence ; and, like the calif Omar, that what was agreeable to the new 
faith was useless, and that what was not ought to be destroyed." 


with its proceedings; and the two Grand Lodges enter- 
tained a mutual good understanding towards each other 
for many years; until the more recent establishment 
grew powerful by the accession of noble and learned 
persons of the highest rank ; who, being under the ne- 
cessity of having a permanent town residence for the 
convenience of attending their parliamentary duties, 
found no difficulty in being regularly present at the 
quarterly Grand Lodges, and thus conveyed the influence 
of their talents arid position in society to the southern 
division of the Order. Their example augmented the 
ranks of Masonry in the provinces, until the increase of 
its Lodges, both in numbers and respectability, in every 
part of England, was so rapid and uniform, that the 
Grand Lodge at York became inert, and at length silently 
resigned its authority into the hands of its more fortu- 
nate rival. 

This appears to be a correct view of the case, because 
the Lodges in the City of York itself, as well as the 
entire north of England, have for many years practised 
the mysteries of the Craft under warrants granted by the 
London Grand Lodge ; and are governed by Provin- 
cial Grand Masters of the same constitutional appoint- 

The authority of the York Grand Lodge was not, 
however, superseded without a feeling of jealousy at the 
usurpations of its rival, which indiscreetly committed a 
few instances of aggression on its privileges that appear 
to be indefensible, as the title of "Grand Lodge of all 
England" had been conceded to it, while the London 
Fraternity assumed the appellation of " The Grand Lodge 
of England." Taking advantage of an unfortunate dis- 
pute amongst the members of a Lodge at York, the 
southern Grand Lodge encouraged the seceding Brethren 
in their disobedience, by granting them a warrant to 
open a new Lodge under its constitutions, in the city ; 
little dreaming how soon a similar secession would occur 
in their own body. This encroachment was not suiiered 
to pass without expostulation andjirotest on the part of 
the ancient Grand Lodge, which contended that it would 
have been more in accordance with the genuine princi- 
ples and regulations of Masonry, if the refractory Brethren 
had been admonished, and recommended to apply for re- 


admission into the Lodge they had so inconsiderately 

This aggression having been attended with success, 
was followed up in 1734, during the Grrand Mastership 
of the Earl of Crawford, by the constitution of Lodges, 
the issue of deputations, and the appointment of Pro- 
vincial G-rand Masters for Northumberland, Lancashire, 
and Durham; all within the jurisdiction of the Grand 
Lodge at York.' So direct an invasion of its ancient 
rights was highly offensive ; but the York Masons, finding 
themselves too feeble to stem the torrent, after an in- 
effectual protest, held on their course in a dignified silence 
for a few years; and, although the rights of their Grand 
Lodge were superseded, and its influence weakened by 
the increasing prosperity of its rival, continued to act on 
their own independent authority, which was never called 
into question. Even after the dominion of the London 
Grand Lodge became indisputably established, and it 
considered itself entitled to the homage of the whole 
island south of the river Tweed, the one old Lodge at 
York was always excepted.^ 

About this time commenced that notable schism which 
again divided the English Fraternity into two separate 
and independent sections, by the establishment of an- 
other G-rand Lodge in London, and the appointment of 
a new G-rand Master, with his staff of officers. It will 
be observed in limine, that, at this time, private Lodges 
did not possess the power of conferring either the second 
or third degree, whicli was a privilege reserved by the 
Grand Lodge for its own peculiar exercise ; and these 
degrees were given as the reward of meritorious Brethren, 
who had rendered essential services to the Craft, either 
by their learning, talent, or activity ; and this only with 

'' Matthew Ridley, Esq., was appointed to the P. G. Mastership of 
Northumberland ; Edward Entwistle, Esq., to that of Lancashire ; and 
Joseph Laycock, Esq., to that of Durham. And the London G-rand 
Lodge pronounced that all the Lodges in those provinces were under 
its authority. 

* Thus it was resolved, during the Grand Mastership of the Earl of 
Carnarvon, afterwards Duke of Chandos, that "All Lodges are under 
the patronage of our Grand Master of England, except the old Lodge 
in York city, and the Lodges of Scotland, Ireland, France, and Italy, 
which, aflfecting independency, are under their own Grand Masters." 
—(Anderson's Const., 1738, p. 196.) 


the unanimous consent of all the Brethren assembled in 
communication. An infringement of this privilege led 
to very serious and important consequences. 

A few ambitious Brethren, who were ineligible for 
these Degrees, prevailed on some inconsiderate Master 
Masons to open an illegal Lodge, and to pass, and raise 
them to the sublime Degree. These irregularities having 
escaped immediate detection, the same Brethren pro- 
ceeded to initiate new members into the Order; and 
attempted to invest them with masonic privileges. A 
project so bold and unprecedented could not elude ulti- 
mate discovery. The newly initiated Masons, proud of 
their acquisition, applied, in the character of visitors, 
for admission into the regular Lodges, when their pre- 
tensions were speedily unmasked, and the authors of the 
imposition were called on to vindicate their conduct 
before the Grand Lodge.^ Complaints were preferred 
against them at the Quarterly Communication in June, 
1739, and the offending Brethren were allowed six 
months to prepare their defence. After a full investiga- 
tion and proof of their delinquency, it was resolved that 
"the transgressors should be pardoned upon their sub- 
mission and promises of future good behaviour." It was 
also resolved, that "the laws shall be strictly put in exe- 
cution against all Brethren who shall, in future, counte- 
nance, connive, or assist at any irregular makings." 

The delinquents, though pardoned, appear to have 
been highly dissatisfied with this decision, which they 
affected to consider in the light of an indirect censure ; 
and having tasted the sweets of their former illicit pro- 
ceedings, they assumed the position of persecuted Bre- 
thren, and converted the resolutions of the Grand Lodge 
into a pretext for persisting in their contumacy ; and in 
open violation of the Constitutions, they continued to 
meet as Masons in unauthorized places,, to initiate, pass, 
and raise candidates, and to perform all the functions of 
a warranted Lodge, under the plea that in ancient times 
a sufficient number of Masons residing wdthin a certain 
district, with the consent of the civil magistrate, were 
empowered to meet for the purpose of making Masons, 
and practising the rites of Masonry, without warrant of 

^ MS. Penes me. 


Constitution ; because the privilege was inherent in 
themselves as individual Masons. But the first meeting, 
under Anthony Sayer, had agreed, as a preliminary 
measure towards the formation of a Grand Lodge, and to 
cement its power, that this inherent privilege should no 
longer- exist. And, therefore, it was resolved, that the 
privilege of assembling as Masons, which had been 
hitherto unrestricted, should be vested in certain Lodges 
or assemblies of Masons convened in certain places; and 
that every Lodge to be hereafter convened, except the 
four old Lodges at this time existing, should be legally 
authorized to act, by a warrant from the Grand Master 
for the time being, granted to certain individuals, by 
petition, with the consent and approbation of the Grand 
Lodge in communication; and that iv if hout such warrant 
no Lodge should hereafter be deemed regular or constitu- 

The seceding Brethren contended that the above 
assembly did not possess the power to pass sucli a reso- 
lution, because it was not only self-created, but defective 
in numbers; whereas, "in order to form what Masons 
mean by a Grand Lodge, there should have been the 
Masters and Wardens of Jive regular Lodges, that is to 
say, five Masters and ten Wardens, making the number 
of installed officers fifteen. This is so well known to 
every man conversant with the ancient laws, usages, 
customs, and ceremonies of Master Masons, that it is 
needless to say more, than that the foundation was de- 
fective in number, and consequently defective in form 
and capacity."^^ And that, although they called the 
assembly a revival of the Grand Lodge, it was a gratuitous 
assumption which could not be verified by facts ; because 
" had it been a revival of the ancient Craft only, without 

10 "This regulation was foimcl necessary," says a Continental wri- 
ter, "because that here and there private Lodges were formed by false 
and unworthy Brethren, who used a ritual of their own, and pretended 
to make men Freemasons, for the sake of their money. Some 
countries, particularly Denmark and Prussia, have passed laws that 
no Lodge shall be held or formed in any part of their dominions 
without having first obtained a warrant from one of the Grand Lodges. 
In Gi-ermany, there are a few of the ancient Lodges which are inde- 
pendent, and which have not joined any Grand Lodge, but which, on 
account of their age, are acknowledged as regular Lodges by all the 
otiiOTS." " Ahiman Rezon, p. viii., Ed. 1813. 


innovations or alterations of any kind, the Free and 
Accepted Masons in Ireland, Scotland, the East and West 
Indies, and America, where no change has yet happened, 
nay, Freemasons in general, would agree in secret 
language and ceremonies with the members of the 
modern Lodges. But daily experience points out the 
contrary; and this is an incontrovertible proof of the 
falsehood of the supposed revival. "^^ 

These arguments and reflections, however, were un- 
heeded by the Grand Lodge, or considered as serving 
only to aggravate i\\e offence; and stringent i-esolutions 
were passed to check their proceedings, which produced 
only a temporary effect ; for several Lodges having been 
erased from the lists for refusing to attend the Grand 
Master in Quarterly Communication, pursuant to notices 
repeatedly served on them for that purpose, the members 
united themselves with the seceders, and succeeded in 
forming a body of sufficient strength to cast off their 
allegiance openly to the metropolitan Grand Lodge. As 
there had been, before this period, some differences be- 
tween the Grand Lodges of London and York, the 
schismatics assumed the name and authority of the 
latter, although it is doubtful whether that body gave 
any sanction to their illegal proceedings. Laurie'^ asserts 
that the sanction was only "pretended;" and Noorth- 
ouck positively says, that they had no encouragement 
whatever from the Grand Lodge at York. His words 
are — "Under a fictitious sanction of the ancient York con- 
stitution, which was dropped at the revival of the Gfrand 
Lodge in 1717, they presumed to claim the right of con- 
stituting Lodges. Some Brethren at York continued, 
indeed, to act under their original constitution ; bat the 
irregular Masons in London never received any patronage 
from them."^'^ 

The constitutional Grand Lodge now took the matter 
into its most serious consideration, and attempted to 
bring the refractory Brethren to a proper sense of duty, 
that they might return to their allegiance, and be re- 
ceived with affection and forgiveness. Failing in this 
endeavour, it resolved at length to adopt the expedient, 
apparently rendered necessary by the emergency, but 

« Ahiman Rezon, p. ix. " Page 116. '* Const., p. 240. 



extremely ill-judged, of introducing a slight alteration 
into the system, which might have the effect of detect- 
ing the schismatics, and thus excluding them from the 
orthodox Lodges.'^ The resolution was unfortunate, and 
produced the very evil which it was intended to avert. 

The Grand Lodge now expressly ordered the regular 
Lodges not to admit the seceding Brethren as visitors, 
or to countenance or acknowledge them in any way 
whatever, but to treat them as persons unworthy of 
'notice, until they humbled themselves as the Grand 
Master shall in his prudence direct, and until he sig- 
nifies his approval by a missive directed to the regular 
Lodges. The Grand Lodge further recommended the 
utmost care and circumspection in the examination of 
visitors ; and not to admit them on any pretence^^diat- 
ever, until they had entered into an engagement that 
they had been regularly initiated, passed, and raised, in 
a lawful, warranted Lodge. 

These regulations were a source of exultation and 
triumph to the seceding Brethren. They loudly ex- 
claimed against what they termed an alteration of the 
landmarks, as an unprecedented, and unconstitutional 
proceeding; accused the Grand Lodge of having deviated 
from ancient usage, and conferred upon all its members 
and adherents the invidious epithet of modern Masons,^^ 

'5 This alteration is thus explained by a cotemporary writer : — " I 
would beg leave to ask whether two persons standing in the Guild- 
hall of London, the one facing the statues of Gog and Magog, and the 
other with his back turned on them, could, with any degree of pro- 
priety, quarrel about their situation, as Gog must be on the right of 
one, and Magog on the right of the other ? Such, and far more insig- 
nificant, is the disputatious temper of the seceding Brethren, that, on 
no better grounds than the above, they chose to usurp a power, and 
to act in open and direct violation of the regulations they had solemn- 
ly engaged to maintain, and by every artifice possible to be devised, 
endeavoured to increase their numbers." 

"5 The offence was increased by the manner in which they recorded 
their opinions on this invidious subject. They charged the Grand 
Lodge with a design of abolishing the old custom of explaining geome- 
try in the Lodges, and substituting conviviality in its stead. '• Some 
of the young Brethren," they said, "made it appear that a good knife 
and fork in the hands of a dexterous Brother over proper materials, 
would give greater satisfaction, and add more to the conviviality of 
the Lodge, than the best scale and compass in Europe." They further 
asserted that the Brethren had made an attempt to get rid of their 
aprons, because '-they made the gentlemen look like mechanics.'-' 
(Ahim. Rezon, p. 14.) 


while they appropriated to themselves the exclusive and 
honourable title of " ancient Masons, acting under the 
old York constitutions, cemented and consecrated by 
immemorial observance," Taking advantage of this 
popular cry, they proceeded to the formation of an inde- 
pendent Grand Lodge, drev7 up a code of lava's for its 
government, issued warrants for the constitution of new 
Lodges, " under the true ancient system of Freemason- 
ly ;" and from the fees arising out of those proceedings 
they succeeded in establishing a fund of benevolence, be- 
sides defraying the current expenses of the Institution. 

It will be necessary to pause a moment here for the 
purpose of taking into consideration a few anomalies in 
this new establishment, which appear difficult of solu- 
tion. The ancients,'^'^ in their justification, had strongly 
and repeatedly condemned the formation of any new 
Grand Lodge, as an unconstitutional proceeding, and at 
variance with the genuine principles of Masonry; and 
pronounced that such a body, being self-constituted, 
could not possess any legal authority over the Craft. If 
they were sincere in their protestations, why did they 
constitute a Grand Lodge of their own? And again, 
if they really derived their authority from the Grand 
Lodge at York, why did they not unite under its banner, 
refer to it for their warrants and other public sanctions, 
instead of openly renouncing its protection by the estab- 
lishment of a new Grand Lodge, and issuing constitu- 
tions for the formation of private Lodges, even in the 
city of York itself? These queries are difficult to an- 
swer, and, therefore, the ancients wisely avoided them. 
Not a word on the subject is to be found in the Ahiman 
Kezon, though, as v^^e have already seen, it is sufficiently 
vituperative on other points.^^ 

1^ I shall use the words ancients and moderns, in their general 
acceptation ; the former to designate the seceders, and the latter the 
constitutional Masons ; although both were alike either ancient or 
modern, being equally derived from the same source. 

1^ Laurie says of this book : — '■ The unfairness with which he (Dermott) 
has stated the proceedings of the moderns, the bitterness with which 
he treats them, and the quackery and vain glory with which he dis- 
plays his own pretensions to superior knowledge, deserve to be repro- 
bated by every class of Masons who are anxious for the purity of 
their Order, and the preservation of that charity and mildness which 
ought to characterize all their proceedings." (Laurie, p. 117.) 


The accusation of changing the ancient landmarks of 
the Order, wliich was pertinaciously urged against the 
Grand Lodge of the moderns, answered every purpose 
which was intended to be effected by it. The new Order 
became extremely popular, and as it professed to convey 
privileges, and to communicate secrers unknown to the 
rival Institution, persons of rank were induced to enrol 
themselves under its banner. 

But, notviithstanding the virtuous indignation which 
was expressed by the ancients at the alleged delinquency 
of the English Grand Lodge, 1 am inclined to think that 
they themselves, at the above period, remodified, at the 
least, if they did not alter, several of the old landmarks. 
It was asserted by Finch, and some other masonic charla- 
tans, that the Master IMason's word was never lost ! And 
although, when this public announcement was made, it 
was considered merely as an ingenious fiction to attract 
attention to their worthless publications; yet there is 
circumstantial evidence, which may induce us to suspend 
our opinions on the truth or falsehood of the assertion. 
These considerations afford a clue towards discovering 
the origin of the English Royal Arch degree, which, I 
think, it would be difficult to trace beyond the period 
of this schism, although I admit the imperfection of 
written evidence in proof of facts attached to a secret 
society, which professes to transmit its peculiar mys- 
teries by oral communication only. 

You will recollect, my dear sir, the observation — I 
think it was first made by Sir William Drummond, the 
erudite author of the Origenes — that " it is painful to 
have doubts where others believe." I have long felt the 
force of this sentiment with respect to the Royal Arch. 
At my first exaltation I was taught to believe it an an- 
cient degree; but I confess, that even at that period I 
entertained considerable doubts on the point. The de- 
gree is too incongruous to be of any great antiquity. It 
exhibits too many evidences of modern construction to be 
received with implicit credence as a ceremony practised 
by the ancient Dionysiacs, or even the morS modern 
colleges of Freemasons, or confraternities of the middle 
ages, to whom we are indebted for the sublime specimens 
of science and genius exhibited in the ecclesiastical 
buildings, which still dignify and adorn every European 


nation. It is not mentioned in any ancient record of 
acknowledged authenticity ; nor does Dr. Anderson give 
the slightest hint in his elaborate history of the Order, 
that it was known at the period when he wrote. 

The earliest mention of it in England, which I can 
find, is in the year 1740,^^ just one year after the tri- 
fling alteration sanctioned by the modern Grand Lodge 
already mentioned. I have now before me an old Master 
Mason's tracing-boad or floor-cloth, which was published 
on the continent almost immediately after symbolical 
Masonr)^ had been received in France as a branch from 
the Grand Lodge of England in 1725, which furnished 
the French Masons with a written copy of the lectures 
then in use ; and it contains the true Master's word in a 
very prominent situation. This forms an important link 
in the chain of presumptive evidence, that the word, at 
that time, had not been severed from the Third Degree, 
and transferred to anotlier. If this be true, as there is 
every reason to believe, the alteration must have been 
effected by some extraordinary innovation and change of 
landmarks. And I am persuaded, for reasons which will 
speedily be given, that the ancients are chargeable with 
originating these innovations; for the division of the 
Third Degree, and the fabrication of the English Royal 
Arch appear, on their own showing, to have been their 

Now the Royal Arch Degree, as it was practised by 
the seceding Brethren, although it contained elements 
of the greatest sublimity, was imperfect in its construc- 
tion, and unsatisfactory in its result ; which will tend to 
show, from the crude and unfinished state in which it 
then aj^peared, that the Degree was in its infancy. The 
anachronisms with which it abounded, and the loose 
manner in which its parts were fitted into each other, 
betrayed its recent origin. In fact, it was evidently an 
attempt to combine several of the continental Degrees 
of sublime Masonry into one, without regard to the order 
of time, propriety of arrangement, or any other consist- 
ent principle ; and, therefore, we find, in the Degree as 
it was originally constructed, jumbled together in a state 

*3 In the Historical Landmarks of Freemasonry, the date of 1730 
is given, but it is a typographical error^ 


of inextricable confusion, the events commemorated in 
Eamsay's Royal Arch, the Knights of the Ninth Arch, of 
the Burning Bush, of the East or Sword, of the Red 
Cross, the Scotch Fellow Craft, the Select Master, the 
Red Cross Sword of Babylon, the Rose Croix, &c. You 
will see, my dear sir, that it is impossible to be explicit 
on this part of the subject, because the particulars cannot 
legally be committed to writing; nor is it mat^^rial, for 
it is the origin and not the details of the Royal Arch 
that I am now principally concerned to show. The 
fabricators might — it is barely possible — have had tlie 
idea from the sister island, but they could not have 
imported the Degree from thence, because, if prac- 
tised by the Irish Masons at that period (which is 
extremely doubtful), it was altogether a diflerent compo- 

I proceed to show the presumption that the Royal 
Arch Degree was concocted by the ancients to widen the 
breach, and make the line of distinction betv/een them 
and the Crand Lodge broader and more indelible. Colonel 
Stone says — "It is asserted, but with how much truth I 
have not the means of deciding, that the first warrant 
for the practice of the Royal Arch Degree was granted 
by Charles Edward Stuart, son of the Pretender, to hold 
a Chapter of an Order called the Scotch Jacobite, at 
Arras, in France, where he had received many favours at 
the hands of the Masons. This Chapter was subsequently 
removed to Paris, where it was called Le Chapitre 
d' Arras, and is, in fact, tite original of our p'esent Royal 
Arch Cha liters.'''' Stone's information on the foreign 
Degrees, however, was very imperfect; for there is no 
evidence to prove that the English Royal Arch was ever 
worked in France. The Chapter established under the 
auspices of the Chevalier was denominated the Eagle and 
Pelican, another name for the Royal Order of Bruce, or 
that part of it which is called the R. S. Y. C. S., a com- 
position of a widely different nature from our Royal 

In compiling the Ahiman Rezon, Deniiott was particu- 
larly guarded lest he should make any undue disclosures 
which might betray the English origin of his Degree, for 
it would have destroyed his claim to the title of an 
an-dent Mason; but, notwithstanding all his care, I shall 


be able to prove the fact almost from the Ahimaii Rezon 
itself, with the assistance of a little analogous testimony 
collected from other sources. It was evidently his 
intention that the Royal Arch should be received amongst 
the Brethren as a foreign Degree, which had been prac- 
tised from the most ancient times. Now it could not be 
a continental rite, because it does not correspond with 
the Royal Arch propagated by Ramsay on the continent 
of Europe; neither is it found in any of the French or 
German systems of Masonry practised during the early 
part and middle of the last century. It is not contained 
in the Royal Order of Bruce, which is the only ancient 
system of Masonry in existence, except the three blue 
Degrees ; neither do we discover it in the systems of 
Charles Edward Stuart, of the Chapter of Clermont, in 
the Degrees of Baron Hunde, in Hermetic, Cabalistic, or 
Eclectic Masonry ; nor in the elaborate rites of Zinnen- 
dorfl', Swedenborg, Fessler, Bedaridde, Peuvret, or their 
compeers. It was not included in the order of Mizraim, 
Adoptive Masonry, or the Rite Ancien et Accepte ; nor, 
I am persuaded, in any other system which was ever 
practised on the continent of Europe. If it were, I have 
failed in my endeavours to discover it. It is, therefore, 
very properly denominated the English Royal Arch, for 
it was doubtless a fabrication of this country, and from 
hence was transmitted to every part of the world where 
it now prevails. Let us, then, endeavour to ascertain its 
precise origin. 

The ancients proclaimed to the public in their Book of 
Constitutions — " It is a truth beyond contradiction, the 
Free and Accepted Masons in Ireland and Scotland, and 
the ancient Masons of England, have one and the same 
customs, usages, and ceremonies ; but this is not the case 
with the modern Masons in England, who differ materially, 
not only from the above, but from most Masons in all parts 
of the world." ^° And in another place they state par- 
ticularly what some of these points of difference were, 
viz., "they differ exceedingly in makings, ceremonies, 
hnowledge. Masonic language, and installations; so much 
so, that they always have been, and still continue to be, 
two distinct societies, totally independent of each 

^'^ Ahiman Rezon, p. 70. 


other." ^^ To authorize such assertions as these, there 
must have been some organic difference, which could be 
nothing short of the institution of a new Degree, prac- 
tised in the ancient Lodges. And to make it the more 
attractive, they dignified it with the title of the Royal 
Arch, as Ramsay had done before them, although their 
Degree differed materially from that which he had pro- 
mulgated under the same name. Although it is ex- 
tremely probable that Ramsay may have had some hand 
in this business; for he visited London at the very period 
in question, for the purpose of introducing his new 
Degrees into English Masonry; and his schemes being 
rejected by the constitutional Grand Lodge, nothing 
appears more likely than that he would throw himself 
into the hands of the schismatics, who would receive his 
communications with pleasure, because they presented 
the means of furthering their views in the propagation 
of what they termed ancient Masonry. And under these 
circumstances a new Degree might be concocted,^ which 

2' Ahinan Rezon, p. 30. 

2^ In the R. A. of Eamsay there was a jewel inscribed with the 
letters I. V. I, 0. L., meaning Inveni verbum in ore Leoni?;, of which 
the following explanation was given in the historical lecture attached 
to the Degree. " BibUcal history informs us that the Jews were 
slaves to the Egyptians until they were redeemed by Moses, for the 
purpose of occupying the pi'omised land. We also learn from the 
annals deposited in the archives in Scotland (!) and only to be exam- 
ined by us, that in a certain battle the ark of alliance was lost in a 
forest, and was subsequently found by the roaring of a lion, which, 
on the approach of the Israelites, ceased its roarings, and couched at 
their feet. This lion had previously devoured a great number of the 
Egyptians who attempted to carry away the ark, keeping securely in 
his mouth the key to the treasures which it contained. But when the 
high priest came near him, he dropped the key from his mouth, and 
retired couching and tame, without offering the least violence to the 
chosen people." There is a similar allusion to a lion in the Degree 
of the venerable Grand Master of all Symbolic Lodges, or Master 
ad vitam, where he is represented as having been wounded by an 
arrow, and having escaped from the stake to which he had been 
bound, lay at the mouth of a cave with the broken rope about his 
neck, using certain mathematical instruments. At the foot of the 
stake hes a crown. This bore a reference to the escape of Charles 
Edward Stuart, the claimant to the crown of England ; and in the 
lectures a question is asked, "What does Jackson signify ?"_ which 
is thus answered, " I am that I am, which is the name of him who 
found the cavern where the Hon was hid that kept in his mouth the 
key -of the ai-k of alliance, which was lost, as is mentioned iii th« 


would cement the schism, and prove an effectual bar to 
all reconciliation, by constituting a tangible line of 
demarcation between them and the moderns, wliich 
would be impregnable. Dermott confesses that the Royal 
Arch WAS FIRST PRACTISED in England by "the Excel- 
lent Masons of the Grand Lodge of England accurdingto 
the old constitutions, who, duly assembled, and constitu- 
tionally convened in general Grand Chapter, carefully 
collected and revised the regulations ivhich have long been 
in use for the government thereof;"^ thus asserting their 
claim to antiquity, although it had never yet been prac- 
tised in England. Ramsay had already made the same 
claim for the antiquity of his Degrees, wdiich, it is w^ell 
known, were invented by himself. It is, therefore, 
extremely probable that Ramsay was concerned in the 
fabrication of the English Degree ; because it still embo- 
dies some of the details of his Royal Arch, the whole of 
which, I am inclined to think, in the earliest arrange- 
ment of the English Degree formed one of the prelimi- 
nary ceremonies.'* 

Degree of the R. A." It is* now universuUv allowed that Jacksou 
meant Jaques-son, the son of .James, the exiled king. There can be 
no doubt but Ramsay invented the French Royal Arch, and made it 
the highest of all his Degrees, and the ne 2]his ultra of Masonry. 
The fact is, the above was a symbol to signify the lion of the tribe of 
Judah, or Christ, pierced with the spear, and bearing the kej' to 
unlock and explain the tendency of the Jewish dispensation, and its 
I'eference to Christianity. 

^3 Laws and regulations of the Holy Royal Arch, in the Ahiman 
Rezon, p. 114. 

^* I make this statement, because the earhest copy of this Degree 
in my possession, dated 1788. commences with a long explanation of 
the ceremonies of Ramsay's Royal Arch as preparatory to the Eng- 
lish Degree. This ceremonial had been discontinued before my own 
exaltation in 1818; and probably not long before ; because a copy of 
the lectures which was placed in my hands, by a friend, at that 
period, opens with the details of Enoch's arches, but this portion had 
been obliterated by running a pen through it. The notorious Masonic 
quack. Finch, in the explanation of one of his engravings, says, 
*' the four equilateral triangles, within the perpendicular part, is 
emblematic of the Suspended Arch, Advanced Arch, Dedicated Arch, 
and Circumscrihed Arch ; and the twelve letters are the initials of the 
proper words belonging to these four points of the Royal Arch 
Degree. In the right hand corner is another Cross relative to the 
Royal Arch, with nine perpendicular Arches, made by Enoch, and 
discovered by Solomon. The Z stands for the chief officer of the 
Chapter, and the equilateral triangle round the letter Z, alludes to the 
triangular chains of tb© Jew§, during- part of their Babylotiisb 'cap= 



Besides, Dermott could not have derived his degree 
from any other source, for the age of continental inno- 
vation had only just commenced, and Ramsay's degrees 
were tlie only new introductions grafted upon symbol- 
ical Masonry in France. The Freemasonry which was 
practised in that country, between A. D. 1700 and 1725, 
was only by some English residents, without a charter 
or any formal Lodge. The first warrant for opening a 
Lodge in France, was granted in 1725, by the Grand 
Lodge of England to Lord Derwentwater, Maskelyne, 
Higuetty, and some other English followers of the Pre- 
cender, who met at an eating-house in the Rue des Bou- 
cheries. It was not till 1728 that Ramsay added his 
new degrees ; and this gave the idea of the hauts grades, 
which soon came into vogue ; but they w^ere received 
with suspicion, and made little progress for some years. 
In December, 1736, Lord Harnouester was elected Grand 
Master for France, and Ramsay w&s installed into the 
office of Grand Orator. In 1740 he came over to Eng- 
land, and remained in this country more than a year ; 
after which he returned to France, where the rage for 
innovation had now fairly commenced.^ 

It was during this period, I am persuaded, that the 
English Royal Arch was fabricated; for very soon after- 
wards, the ancients publicly ainiounced that " Ancient 
Masonry consists of Jour degrees," w^hile modern Masonry 
had only three ; the fourth signifying the Royal Arch, of 
which, until a much later period, the constitutional 
Grand Lodge professed to know nothing, but which was 
authoritatively pronounced by the ancients to be "an 
essential and component part of ancient Masonry, and 
that which is the perfection and end of the beautiful 
system."*^ The words of the preamble to the original 
laws of their Royal Arch, are these, — "Ancient Masonry 

^^ We have the testimony of Professor Robison, the Anti-Mason, 
that " Ramsay was as eminent for his piety as he was for his enthu- 
siasm, but his opinions were singular. His eminent learning, his ele- 
gant talents, his amiable character, and particularly his estimation at 
court, gave great influence to every thing he said on the subject of 
Masonrjr, which was merely a matter of fashion and amusement. 
Whoever has attended much to human affairs, knows the eagerness 
loith lohich men propagate all singular opinions, and the delight which 
attends their favourable reception.''^ 

■^'' Ahiman Rezon, pp. 113, 114. 


consists of four degrees ; the three first of which are 
those of the Apprentice, the Fellowcraft, and the sublime 
degree of Master ; and a Brother, being well versed in 
these degrees, and otherwise qualified as hereafter will 
be expressed, is eligible to be admitted to the Fourth De- 
gree, the Holy Royal Arch. This degree is certainly more 
august, sublime, and important than tJtose which 'precede it, 
and is the summit and perfection of ancient Masonry. It 
impresses on our minds a more firm belief of the exist- 
ence of a Supreme Deity, without beginniiig of days, or 
end of years, and justly reminds us of the respect and 
veneration due to that Holy Name. Until within these 
few years, this degree was not conferred on any but 
those who had been a considerable time enrolled in the 
Fraternity ; and could, besides, give the most unequi- 
vocal proofs of their skill and proficiency in the Craft."^^ 
In fact, until within a few years before these laws were 
drawn up, it was not conferred at all ; for it was un- 

In proof that the members of the constitutional Grand 
Lodge were, at this period, ignorant of its existence, and 
disclaimed its authority as a masonic innovation, the 
Grrand Secretary of the moderns stated, in answer to the 
petition of an ancient Mason for pecuniary relief, about 
the year 1758 — *' Being an ancient Mason, you are not 
entitled to any of our charity. The ancient Masons have 
a Lodge at the ' Five Bells,' in the Strand, and theii 
secretary's name is Dermott. Our Society is neither 
Arch, (Royal Arch,) nor ancient, so that you have no 
right to partake of our charity."^^ It is clear, therefore, 
that the moderns had no Royal Arch in 175S ; and 
equally clear that it had been long practised by the an- 
cients, who were entirely ignorant of it at the first 
breaking out of the schism ; for they were then members 
of Lodges under the constitutions of England; and if 
they were acquainted with the degree, they were bound 
on their allegiance to communicate it to their superiors, 
if, as they afterwards asserted, it formed a constituent 
part of ancient Masonry, which they did not do. And 
if the}^ were not acquainted with it, as it is reasonable 

^'' Ahiman Rezon, p. 113. 

'■^^ A copy of this curious document will be found in the Ahiman 
Rezon. Introduction, p. xi. 


to presume, how did they know it after the schism, if it 
was not a new invention or a new communication? And 
it could not be the latter for the reasons already stated. 
The conclusion is, therefore, inevitable, that the ancients 
fabricated the degree. 

In confirmation of this fact, the same book of con- 
stitutions declares, that "it is impossible to exalt a 
modern Mason to the Royal Arch, without previously 
conferring upon him the Master's deg)-ee according to 
theu own ceremo?iu's.^^''^^ This assei'tion was doubtless made 
on the ground that he was already in possession of the 
Mastei"'s word, which they knew was communicated in 
the Third Degree, according to the terms of the " Master's 
part," as then practised by the modern Grand Lodge : 
for the first lectures which were drawn up by Brothers 
Payne, Anderson, Desasuliers, Martin Folkes, Madden, 
and other eminent Masons, expressly declare, in the de- 
gree of Master, that "that which was lost," meaning the 
Master Mason's word, " is now fonnd ;''^ i. e. in the latter 
ceremonies of the Thiid Degree, when it was delivered to 
the newly-raised Master in due form ; and, therefore, the 
Royal Arch Degree would have thrown no new light on 
the subject to a constitutional Master Mason. "^° 

This is a convincing proof that the ditference between 
the ancient and modern systems consisted solely in the 
mutilation of the Third Degree ; and it is actually referred 
to in the proceedings of the modern Grand Lodge, in 
1755, where they express their disapprobation at the 
conduct of the ancients in "introducing novelties and 
conceits of opinionative persons, to create a belief that there 
have been other societies of Masons more ancient than this 
society ;''''^^ evidently alluding to the establishment of the 

29 Ahiman Rezon, p. 20. 

^° A highly valued correspondent says, " Since I last wrote to you, 
I have had occasion to study much Masonry, both as to the history 
and origin of the several degrees, and its distinction into Speculative 
ind Operative ; and after the closest attention I can pay to the sub- 
lect, I have come to the conclusion that no degrees are ancient except 
the three first. The R. A. Degrees may or may not ; but I cannot 
trace them much, if at all beyond the middle of the last century ; in 
fact I have great doubts if they be not a modern compilation (I speak 
particularly of the R. A. Degree itself) ; the idea having been taken 
from Ezekiel's vision, in the same way as the almost blasphemous 
foreign degree of the ■ — ■ - — - is taken from the first chapter of Reve- 
lationg." "' Noortbouck's Oon&titutions, p= 264 


Royal Arch ; which they publicly repudiated three years 
afterwards, as I have already shown, by declaring that 
they knew nothing of " either Arch or Royal Arch." 

These declarations appear to have created a sensation 
amongst the Fraternity, which was unfavourable to the 
seceders ; and, therefore, Dermott proceeded, in his own 
justification, to charge the regular Grand Lodge with 
having concocted a new Third Degree at its first establish- 
ment, because the Masons who formed it were ignorant 
of the Master'' s part. lie says that "About the year 1717, 
some joyous companions who had passed the degree of a 
Craft, though very rusty, resolved to form u Lodge for 
themselves, in order, by conversation, to recollect what 
had formerly been dictated to them ; or if that should be 
found impracticable, to suhstitntt something new, which 
might for the future pass for Masonrij among themselves. At 
this meeting the question was asked, whether any person 
in the assembly knew the Master's part ; and being an- 
swered in the negative, it was resolved that the defciency 
should he made up with a new composition, and what frag- 
ments of the old Order could be found among them, 
should be immediately re-formed, and made more pliable 
to the humours of the people. "^^ It will be needless to 
add that this is an exaggeration ; because it is very im- 
probable that the Brethren who were acting in the four 
old Lodges in existence at that period, with ISayer, Payne, 
Lamball, Capt. Elliott, and other eminent Brethren at 
their head, should be ignorant of the ceremonies of the 
Third Degree. 

From the above facts and arguments we may ration- 
ally conclude that the Royal Arch was practised at that 
period by the ancient Masons only.^ 

^^ Ahiman Rezoii, p. 23. 

^^ At the fabrication of this degree, it is evident that the word 
" Keystone" was used, for Dermott, who was doubtless the individual 
to whom its origin may, in a great measure, be attributed, in an epi- 
logue )i his composition, which was spoken at the Theatre Royal at 
the Hayraarket. has the following passage, in evident allusion to it : — 
" The men, too, can build, as their fancy best suits, 
With curls on each side like a pair of volutes : 
High toupees in front, something like a Keystone."' &c. 
I think he was right in the use of this word, although our Supreme 
Grand Chapter has substituted the words cape stone, to imply that the 
subterranean passage of those early ages, was not vaulted, but covered 
with a flat stone roof supported by pillars, after the manner of the 


It appears further, that the degree was then conferred 
in the Master's Lodge ; for separate chapters were a sub- 
sequent introduction, as also was the change of colour. 
The records state, that "every regular and warranted 
Lodge possesses the power of forming and holding meet- 
ings in each of these several degrees, the last of which, 
from its pre-eminence, is . denominated a chapter."^^ 
But these regulations^were drawn up many years after 
the first establishment of the R. A. 

They speak also of " Excellent Masons," which is 
another proof that the degree had been adapted from 
Continental Masonry, and that the fabricators w^ere de- 
sirous of inculcating the belief that it was a foreign rite. 

Egyptian temples ; under an impression, I suppose, that arches and 
keystones were unknown at the building of Solomon's Temple. The 
subject is of sufficient importance to merit a brief examination, be- 
cause modern discovery has confirmed the belief that the use of the 
keystone is older than the first temple. Mr. King indeed asserts that 
'' arches were not used for a thousand years after the building of King 
Solomon's Temple;" and as a proof of it, he cites the temples of 
Zerubbabel and Herod, which contained no arches ; nor are they 
mentioned by Homer. None, he says, were introduced into the magni- 
ficent buildings either of Babylon or Persepolis ; neither were they 
made use of at Athens ; in the temple of Diana at Ephesus; nor in 
Egypt, except in the edifices which were constructed after the time 
of the Ptolemies ; and he concludes by assigning the honour of the 
invention to Archimedes. — (Mun. Antiq., vol. ii., p. 225.) But sub- 
sequent investigations have shown the inaccuracy of this opinion. It 
is now clear that the arch and kej'stone were known to the Tyrians 
before the time of Solomon. "An opinion," says Mr. Wilkinson, in 
his Topography of Thebes, '• admitted by the generality of the learned 
world, gains force by want of contradiction, till at length it passes 
into fact. The arch was employed in the houses of the Egyptians, 
owing to the small quantity of wood growing in the country, and in 
roofing the chambers of the crude brick pyramids. I had long been 
persuaded that the greater part of the brick vaults in the western 
tombs of Thebes were at least coeval with the eighteenth dynasty, 
but had never been fortunate enough to find proofs in support of my 
conjecture, till chance threw in my way a tomb, vaulted in the usual 
manner, with an arched doorway of the same materials, stuccoed, and 
bearing in every part of the frescoe paintings, the name of Amenoph I. 
Innumerable vaults and arches exist at Thebes, of early date, but un- 
fortunateljr none with the names of kings remaining on them. Tlie 
above discovery carries tJie existence of the arch up to B. C. 1540, or 
450 years before the building of King Solomon^s Temple.^' And the 
same Egyptian antiquary thinks that they were known at a still earlier 
period. Dr. Clarke carries arches up to the time of Abraham ; an 
opinion which is corroborated by Sir W. Gell. — (Argolis., p. 56.) 
" Ahiman Rezon, p. 14. 


This is further confirmed by what the Ahiman Rezon 
says of the Lodge at the " Ben Jonson's Head," that 
" Some of the Brethren had been abroad, and received 
extraordinary benefits on account of ancient Masonry."^^ 
The Excellent Masons were alone eligible to be present 
during an exaltation. It is evident that Dermott knew 
nothing of the degree so called, which is a more modern 
compilation, because if he had, his E,. A., or Ne plus 
ultra, would have constituted a fifth degree, and this 
w^as repudiated by his preliminary announcement that 
"Freemasonry contains yM«- degrees, and no more." 
The name of Excellent w^as, therefore, a mere distinction 
applied to those who had received the new degree. And 
this argument will serve to prove that the Past Master's 
was also unknown as a degree, it being then considered 
as a simple ceremony, and was confined to those who 
had actually occupied the chair of their Lodge. 

When the General Grand Chapter was formed, the 
degree was dignified with the name of Most Excellent ; 
the chief officers of the Grand Lodge were considered 
ex-oflficio as " Grand Chiefs " of the Royal Arch ; and in 
the end, w^arrants were pronounced necessary to author- 
ize Lodges to confer the degree ; and the fee was stated 
at one guinea. These, how^ever, appear to have been 
gradual steps; and many years elapsed before the system 
was arranged, and the Order of the Royal Arch organ- 
ized so as to constitute an independent rite. Altogether 
it was a bold proceeding; but Bro. Dermott was an 
intrepid character f^ and he succeeded in establishing 
quietly in England that wdiich excited on the continent 
of Europe, opposition and tumult, and sometimes expo- 
sure and disgrace. 

It is true, the degree was unattended wath any specu- 
lative doctrines of a questionable or dangerous nature ; 
and, therefore, it was not likely to excite an extraordi- 

^^ Ahimau Rezon, p. 12. 

^ Sir W. IDrummond (Origines, vol. i., p. 13), speaking of the 
fabulous history of the Chaldeans, says, " mankind are seldom satis- 
fied with remaining in doubt, when conjecture can explain what 
curiosity desires to know. The bold invent, and the credulous 
beheve. Imagination embellishes tradition, illumines the dark pages 
of history, and builds on the early and doubtful annals of former 
times some glittering edifice, which dazzles the eyes of the ignorant, 
and which even pleases the spectator who doubts of its solidity." 


nary degree of attention in the recipients. It embodied 
none of those theosophic notions which pervaded some 
of the Teutonic systems of continental Masonry; it 
promulgated no doctrines which were prejudicial to the 
interests of morality; and for these reasons it escaped 
animadversion. It aimed to embody the sublimities of 
religion, and to hallow tlie attributes of the Most High. 
And while it pointed to the prophecy of Jacob, that 
"the sceptre should not depart from Judah until Shiloh 
come,""' the prejudices of the Christian and the Jew 
would be alike conciliated, and no one would feel justi- 
fied in questioning the propriety of an extension of the 
Third Degree, while its object was reputed to promote 
the glory of God, peace on earth, and good- will amongst 

Even after the Grand Chapter was formed, it was 
only necessary to produce a certificate that the appli- 
cant was " a Geometrical Master Mason" to entitle him 
to be ijassed^^ to the Royal Arch; and the candidate was 
privately passed the chair as a preliminary ceremony f^ a 
custom that was used till the Union, in 1813.*° This 

•" The name given to the Chapter No. 1 of the modern system, 
viz., "The Eock and Fountain Shiloh," is a proof that our Brethren 
of that age considered the Eoyal Arch to be a Christian degree ; for 
the above title interprets Shiloh as Christ, and refers to the fountain 
of his blood springing from the rock of our salvation. 

^^ This is the word that was then used. 

^3 The qualifications of a candidate at that period, as I find by an 
old MS. in my possession, were these : — '-Brethren who had distin- 
guished themselves in Craft Masonry, not only by their learning and 
talent, but by their love of Masonry, their activity, generosity, and 
-liberality of sentiment. They must have shown themselves possessed 
of a great desire to increase their masonic knowledge, and to pro- 
mote the general interests of the Society ; not governed by either 
enthusiasm or bigotrj', but by a general love to the human race. 
They cannot be admitted until they have passed thi-ough the degx'ees 
of Craft Masonry, nor until they have attained the age of twenty-five 
years, unless their father be a Companion of the sublime degree, and 
then they moy be admitted, if well recommended, ballotted for, and 
approved, at three several periods, at the age of twenty -three." 

■*" The fact is proved by the form of the official documents. Before 
the degree was conferred the following certificate was issued by the 
Master and Wardens: — "Whereas our trusty and well-beloved 

Brother , a geometrical Master Mason, and member of our 

Lodge, has solicited us to recommend him as a Master Mason, every 
way qualified for passing the Holy Royal Arch ; we do hereby cer- 
tify that, so far as we are judges of the necessary qualifications, the 


extension of the primitive principles of the Order, was 
subsequently adopted by the constitutional Masons under 
the Gi-rand Lodge of England, who remodelled the degree, 
and brought it to its present form after many judicious 
alterations and improvements; but the period when i 
was first introduced amongst them is uncertain. The 
edition of Preston's Illustrations, dated 17 81, contains 
no reference whatever to the Royal Arch; but in the 
very next edition, after the author had been admitted 
into the Fraternity of the ancients, the word " Com- 
panion" occurs in reference to the Grand Chapter of 
Harodim, established by the constitutional Grand Lodge 
in 1787, which, says he, "for some years was faintly 
encouraged ; but after its merit had been further investi- 
gated, it received the patronage of several exalted 
masonic characters." The poetical department of the 
first named edition contains no Arch songs, while the 
latter contains several. Bro. Dunckerley composed his 
Eoyal Arch songs between these two dates. The intro- 
duction of the Royal Arch Degree into the modern system 
could not, therefore, be earlier than the dedication of 
Freemasons' Hall in 1776. Ten years after this date, 
the regulations of the degree were iirst published. I 
have before me a list of Grand Officers in 1788, wdiich 
shows the state of the Royal Arch at that period ; and 
from the number of Past Grand Masters Z, which was 
then an annual office, being only eight, the presumption 
is that the Grand Chapter had been formed only eight 
or nine years previously, — viz., in 1779.^^ But it was 

said Brother has obtained the uuanimous consent of our Lodge for 
this reconunendation." But after the candidate had received the 
degree, this certificate was issued to authorize his registration in the 
books of the Grand Chapter : — " We, the three Cliiefs and Scribe, 
whose names are hereunto subscribed, do certify, that in a Chapter 
of Holy Royal Arch, convened and held under the sanction and 
authority of the worshipful Lodge No, — , our beloved Brother 

, having delivered to us the recommendation of the Lodge 

, hereunto subjoined, and proved himself, by due examination, 

to be well qualified in the several degrees of Apprentice, Fellowcraft, 
and Master Mason, and having passed the chair, was by us admitted 
to the supreme degree of Excellent E.. A. Mason." 

•*! The names of these eight were Comps. James Galloway, Esq., 
Thomas Dunckerley, Esq., John Brooks, Esq., James Heseit, Esq., 
John Allen, Esq., Bartholomew Ruspini, Esq., Francis Const, Esq., 
Sir Herbert Mackworth, Bart. 


not till the year 1785 that newly exalted Companions 
were required to pay a registration fee. 

At the period of its introduction by the ancients, how- 
ever, and before the moderns ever contemplated its use 
amongst themselves, the Grand Lodge was alarmed at 
the innovation ; and when the Marquis of Caernarvon 
was elected to the office of Grand Master, he applied 
himself steadily to the extinction of the schism. His 
acting deputy, Dr. Manningham, conducted the proceed- 
ings, and pointed out the necessity of discouraging such 
an open violation of the laws of the Society, by some 
decisive measures. At a Grand Lodge holden on the 
20th of March, 1755, a formal complaint was preferred 
against certain Brethren for forming and assembling 
under the denomination of ancient Masons, and pro- 
nouncing themselves independent of this Society, and 
not subject to the laws or to the authority of the Grand 
Master. Dr. Manningham, the D. G. M., observed that 
"such meetings were not only contrary to the laws of 
Masonry, but an insult to the Grand Master and to the 
whole body of Free and Accepted Masons ; as they tended 
to introduce the novelties and conceits of opinionative 
persons, and to create a belief that there have been other 
societies of Masons more ancient than this Society." 
A,fter much deliberation, it was unanimously resolved, 
'That the meeting of Brethren under any denomination 
of Masons, without a legal power and authority from the 
Grand Lodge of England for the time being, is incon- 
sistent with the honour and interest of Masonry, and an 
open violation of the established laws of the Order."^^ 

This resolution was followed up by the erasure of 
twenty-one Lodges from the list, for irregularity; and 
particular mention is made of one of these Lodges, 
which was most active in its propagation of the schism, 
held at the Ben Jonson's Head, in Spitalfields, and its 
fourteen members were all expelled the Society by name. 
Such prompt and decisive proceedings were met by a 
public remonstrance on the part of the ancients, couched 
n the following language : — "A Lodge at the Ben Jon- 
son's Head, in Pelham street, Spitalfields, was composed 
mostly of ancient Masons, though under the modern 

« Minutes of the Grand Lodge, March 20, 1755. 


Constitution. Some of them had been abroad, and 
received extraordinary benefits on account of ancient 
Masonry ; therefore, they agreed to practice ancient 
Masonry on every third Lodge night." This avowal 
contains an indirect allusion to the Continental innova- 
tions from which the Royal Arch had been concocted; 
for all the new systems claimed to be derived from some 
ancient system of Scotch Masonry, which, in fact, never 
existed. "Upon one of these nights, some modern 
Masons attempted to visit them, but were refused 
admittance. The persons so refused laid a formal com- 
plaint before the modern Grand Lodge, then held at the 
Devil Tavern, near Temple Bar. The said Grand Lodge, 
though inca-pahle of judging the j^rojniety or impropriety 
of such refusal, (because, I suppose, they knev^ nothing 
of the Royal Arch,) not being ancient Masons, ordered 
that the Ben Jonson's Lodge should admit all sorts of 
Masons, without distinction, and, upon non-compliance 
with that order, they were censured. 

"The persons thus censured, drew up, printed, and 
published, a manifesto, and Mason's creed, which did 
honour to their heads and hearts. The following lines 
are copied from the preface to their pamphlet : — 'Whereas, 
the genuine spirit of Masonry seems to be greatly on the 
decline, that the Craft is in imminent danger from false 
Brethren; and, whereas, its very fundamentals have of 
late been attacked, and a revolution from its ancient 
principles, &c., it has been thought necessary by certain 
persons who have the welfare of the Craft at heart, to 
publish the following little pamphlet, by means of which 
it is hoped the ignorant may be instructed, the lukewarm 
inspirited, and the irregular reformed.' Every real, that 
is, every ancient Mason, who read those publications, 
was convinced of the injustice done to the Ben Jonson's 
Lodge in censuring them for having done their duty ; a 
duty which they owed to God, and to themselves ; and 
a business with which their judges, the then modern Grand 
Lodge, were totally unacquainted. Nevertheless, censure 
was passed, and a minute thereof preserved in the 
archives, from whence it was published as one of the 
legislative orders on their records."^*^ 

■^ Ahtman Rezon, p. 12. 


Matters went on in this state for some years, both 
parties increasing in numbers and respectability ; until 
the ancients procured tlie high patronage of the Duke 
of Athol, the Grand Master elect of Scotland, who 
undertook the office of Grand Master, in 1776; and the 
opposition, which was now carried on upon more equal 
terms, had the effect of stimulating the zeal of the Fra- 
ternity on both sides; and the number of Lodges was 
gradually augmented by the issue of new warrants from 
each of the rival Grand Lodges. In 1777, Lord Petre, 
the Grand Master of the modern section, again brought 
the subject before the Grand Lodge ; and, on the 17th 
of April, the following resolutions were unanimously 
agreed to : — " That no Lodge can assemble without a 
w^arrant from the Grand Master, and that the persons 
who have assembled, and still continue to assemble as 
Masons, by virtue of a power from a pretended Grand 
Lodge, established in London a few years since, and 
which is now said to exist under the patronage of the 
Duke of Athol, are not to be countenanced or acknow- 
ledged by any regular Mason under the Constitution 
of England, on pain of forfeiting the privileges of the 
Society ; the said convention being a gross insult to the 
Grand Master, and to every Lodge under his auspices ; 
and, the more effectually to discourage these illegal con- 
ventions, that no regular Mason shall be present at them, 
or give any sanction to their proceedings. That it is 
the opinion of this Grand Lodge, that the persons calling 
themselves ancient Masons, and now assembling in Eng- 
land, or elsewhere, under the sanction of the Duke of 
Athol, are not to be considered as Masons, nor are their 
meetings to be countenanced or acknowledged by any 
Lodge or Mason acting under our authority. That this 
censure shall not extend to any Mason who shall produce 
A certificate, or give other satisfactory proof of his having 
been made a Mason in a regular Lodge under the Con- 
stitution of Scotland, Ireland, or any foreign Grand 
Lodge, in alliance with the Grand Lodge of England." 

These resolutions produced the famous letter of 
Laurence Dermott, the D. G. M. of the ancients, in 
which he propounds the following queries: — "Q. 
Whether Freemasonry, as practised in ancient Lodges, 
is universal? A. Yes. Q. Whether what is called 


modern Masonry is universal? A. No. Q. Whether 
there is any material difference between the ancient and 
modern ^ A. A great deal ; because an ancient Mason 
can not only make himself known to his Brother, but, in 
case of necessity, can discover his very thoughts to him 
in the presence of a modern, without his being able to 
distinguish that either of them is a Freemason.'*^ Q 
Whether a modern Mason may, with safety, communicate 
all his secrets to an ancient Mason? A. Yes. Q. 
Whether an ancient Mason may, with the like safety, 
communicate all his secrets to a modern Mason, without 
farther ceremony? A. No; for, as a science compre- 
hends an art, though an art cannot comprehend a science, 
even so ancient Masonry contains everything valuable 
amongst the moderns, as well as many other things that 
cannot be revealed without additional ceremonies (the 
Koyal Arch, for instahce). Q. Whether a person made 
in a modern manner, and not after the ancient custom 
of the Craft, has a right to be called Free and Accepted, 
according to the intent and meaning of the words? A. 
His being unqualified to appear in a Master's Lodge, 
according to the universal system of Masonry, renders 
the appellation improper. Q. Whether it is possible to 
initiate or introduce a modern Mason into the Royal 
Arch Lodge (the very essence of Masonry), without 
making him go through the ancient ceremonies? A. 
No. Q. Whether the present members of modern 
Lodges are blameable for deviating so much from the 
old Landmarks? A. No; because the innovation was 
made in the reign of George 1., and the new form was 
delivered as orthodox to the present members ? Q. 
Therefore, as it is natural for each party to maintain the 

** An annotator makes tlie following observation on the above : — 
"The author of Ahimau Eezon has stated; that he could convey his 
mind to an ancient Mason in the presence of a modern Mason, with- 
out the latter knowing whether either of them were Masons. He 
further asserted that he was able, with a few masonic implements, i. e. 
two squares and a common gavel, or hammer, to convey any word or 
sentence of liis own, or the immediate dictations of a stranger, to a 
skilful and intelhgent Freemason of the ancient Order, without 
speaking, writing, or noise ; and that to any distance when the par- 
ties can see each other, and at the same time be able to distinguish 
squares from circles." This masonic system of cypher- writing is 
now well understood. 


orthodoxy of their masonic preceptors, how shall we 
distinguish the original and most useful system? A. 

The 7iiimher of Ancient Masons abroad, compared with the 
moder?is, prove the universality of the old Order, and 
the utility thereof appears by the love and respect shown 
to the Brethren, in consequence of their superior abilities 

n conversing with, and distinguishing the Masons of all 
countries and denominations, a circumstance peculiar to 
ancient Masons."''^ 

. It will be unnecessary to enquire whether all this is 
consistent with the requirements of masonic duty. It is 
clear that disobedience is a breach of masonic law. The 
very essence of the Institution is founded on obedience 
to authority; and this once forfeited, led to division, 
anarchy, and dispute. But good frequently springs out 
of evil. The bee has a sting, but it produces honey. 
These movements excited the attention of the Fraternity, 

md also of the public. Ancient feelings, which had 
long been dormant in some of the initiated, began to 
revive, and they renewed their connection with the 
Lodges they had abandoned. Lukewarm Brethren 
became partizans on either side, and Freemasonry 
reaped the benefit of these misunderstandings by an 
increase both in numbers and influence. A more active 
study of its principles led to a greater perfection in 
the science, and many initiations took place amongst 
persons who had not previously given the Institution a 
serious thought. Thus the ranks of both ancient and 
modern were increased, and the funds of benevolence 
for the wddow and orphan augmented from new and 
unexpected sources; a result which cemented the popu- 
larity of the Order. Its beauties and excellences were 
placed in a clearer and more prominent point of view, 
and the public became convinced that, though the two 
hostile parties might differ on some unimportant points 

*5 Ahiman Rezon, p. 18. The reference to the number of foreign 
lasons in the last answer, contains an evident allusion to the several 
ystems of Scotch Masonry, which were at that time prevalent in 
France and Germany ; all of which were confidentl}^ proclaimed to 
be ancient, when, in fact, the inventors were still Uving. The num- 
ber of Brethren who were contented to practise unalloyed sym- 
bolical Masonry, the only system which possessed any real claims to 
antiquity, on the continent were comparatively few. 


of discipline, both were pursuing the same laudable 
course, — the investigation of science, and the benefit of 

About this time, a treaty of alliance and confederation 
was effected by the ancients, with the Grand Lodges o 
Scotland and Ireland, under an impression that the 
ancient rights of Masonry were exclusively practised by 
them, and that the English Grand Lodge had departed 
from the primitive Landmarks, and deteriorated the sys- 
tem by modern innovations.'*'^ In this treaty it was 
mutually agreed, that each Grand Lodge should transmit 
to the others, an account of their proceedings; and that 
all such information or correspondence should be con- 
veyed in the most respectful terms, such as might suit 
the honour and dignity of the respective Grand Lodges. 

The two Societies continued to practise Masonry 
according to their respective views, until the year 1801, 
when it appears that several members of the modern 
Craft were in the habit of attending the meetings of the 
ancient Lodges, and rendering their assistance in the 
ceremonies of making, passing, and raising ; by which 
conduct they became amenable to the laws of Masonry. 
Complaints to this effect were formally preferred, and 
the Grand Lodge found itself obliged to notice the pro- 
ceedings, and after some deliberation, the erring Brethren 
were attainted, and allowed three mouths to prepare their 
defence. It does not appear that the Grand Lodge had 
any intention of making an example of the ofienders; 
on the contrary, in accordance with the amiable spirit of 

•'s A correspondent to one of the London papers, in June, 1783, 
states, rather strongly, that the ancients " having prevailed on some 
of the Brethren from Scotland and Ireland to attend their meetings, 
and inducing them to believe that the ancient rites of Masomy vrere 
only practised by them, and that the regular Lodges had deviated 
from the ancient landmarks, they obtained, through this channel, a 
friendly intercourse with the G-rand Lodges of both kingdoms, and a 
treaty of alliance was inadvertently formed between these Grand 
Lodges and this irregular society. Neither of these respectable 
bodies, had the real origin of these seceders from the regular Fraterni- 
ty been known, would have permitted their authority to sanction an 
infringement of the Constitution of Masonry, to which all Masons 
are bound, or an encroachment on the established legislature of the 
Fraternity of this kingdom." As this assertion was not contradicted, 
there appears to have been some truth in it. 


Masonry, it displayed an anxiety to heal the divisions by 
which the Order had been so long distracted ; and used 
its utmost efforts to effect an union of the two bodies; 
thus closing forever the dissensions that proved a bar to 
the divine exercise of brotherly love. For this purpose, 
committee was appointed, with Lord Moira, the D. G. 
M., at its head, who declared, on accepting his appoint- 
ment as a member of the committee, that "he should 
consider the day on which a coalition should be formed, 
as one of the most fortunate in his life : and that he was 
empowered by the Prince of Wales to say that his Roy- 
al Highness's arms would ever be open to all the Masons 
in the kingdom indiscriminately. As a mutual conces- 
sion, the D. Gr. M. of the ancients publicly promised, on 
his own part, and in the names of his two friends, 
against whom charges had been exhibited, that if the 
Grand Lodge would extend their indulgence to them, 
they would use their utmost exertions to effect an union 
between the two Societies ; and he pledged himself to 
the Grand Lodge that it should be accomplished. 

It does not appear, however, that he adopted any mea- 
sures which might tend to heal the breach ; for, on the 
9th of February, 1803, it was represented to the Grand 
Lodge, that the irregular Masons still continued refrac- 
tory; and that so far from soliciting readmission into 
the Craft, they had not taken any steps to effect an 
union ; their conduct was, therefore, deemed highly cen- 
surable, and the laws of the Grand Lodge were ordered 
to be enforced against them. It v^as unanimously re- 
solved, that the persons who were opposed to the union 
of the two Grand Lodges, be expelled the Society ; and 
also for countenancing and supporting a set of persons, 
calling themselves ancient Masons, and holding Lodges 
in this kingdom without the authority of his Royal High- 
ness the Prince of Wales, the Grand Master, duly elected 
by this Grand Lodge. That whenever it shall appear 
that any Masons under the English constitution shall in 
uture attend or countenance any Lodge or meeting of 
ersons calling themselves ancient Masons, under the 
sanction of any person claiming the title of Grand Mas- 
ter of England, who shall not have been duly elected in 
this Grand Lodge, the laws of the Society shall not only 


be strictly enforced against them, but their names shall 
be erased from the list, and transmitted to all the regu- 
lar Lodges under the constitution of England. 

These differences became at length so irksome, that 
the most influential Brethren in both divisions of the 
Craft, were earnestly desirous of an union.^^ The first 
actual step which was taken to produce that effect, 
originated with the Earl of Moira, in the negociation of a 
treaty of alliance between the English Grand Lodge, of 
which he was the D. Gr. M., and the Grand Lodge of 
Scotland, under the Grand Mastership of the Earls of 
Aboyne and Dalhousie. At the Grand Festival of St. 
Andrew, holden at Edinburgh, November 13, 1803, the 
Earl of Dalhousie on the throne. Lord Moira introduced 
the question of the English schism, and explained the 
conduct of the Grand Lodge of England towards the 
ancient Masons. He stated that "the hearts and arms of 
the Grand Lodge had ever been open for the reception of 
their seceding Brethren, who had obstinately refused to 
acknowledge their faults, and return to the bosom of 
their motlier Lodge; and that though the Grand Lodge 
of England differed in a few trifling observances from 
that of Scotland, they had ever entertained for Scottish 
Masons that affection and regard which it is the object of 
Freemasonry to cherish, and the duty of Freemasons to 
feel." His Lordship's speech was received by the Breth- 

*^ This was strongly urged, in a letter to the Duke of Athol, pub- 
lished by Bro. Dauiell, in 1801. " From a close and attentive 
observation," says he, " aided by frequent conversations with several 
of the most worthy and respectable members of that Society, I am 
warranted to assert, that an union has long been desired by them with 
an ardour equal to my own. Under all these circumstances, can it be 
supposed, my Lord, that you, as a regular Mason, when jou are 
informed of the origin of the Institution which, I am fully persuaded, 
you patronize from the purest motives; can it, I say, be supposed 
that you, or any nobleman, would lend his name to support or coun- 
tenance any society, however praiseworthy their motives might have 
appeared, who meet in direct violation of the laws and government 
of the Fraternity ? No, my Lord, your public character is too well 
known ; your zeal for the welfare of the country is too manifest, and 
your attachment to the royal family too deeply rooted, to admit of 
deviation. Therefore, I trust, your feehngs will coincide with my 
own, and that you will really conceive what honour, what peculiar 
satisfaction, and what heartfelt pleasure it would give you, to bring 
that society which you have lately patronized, under the Eoyal ban- 
ner." — (Masonic Union, pp. 23, 27.) 


ren with loud and reiterated applause; a most unequivo- 
cal mark of their approbation of its sentiments^^ 

An official despatch on the above subject from the 
same nobleman, was read at the Quarterly Communica- 
tion, in April, 1805 ; and it was resolved, " That as the 
Grand Lodge of Scotland has expressed, through the 
Earl of Moira, its earnest wish to be on terms of confi- 
dential communication with the Grand Lodge of Eng- 
land, under the authority of the Prince of Wales, this 
Graiid Lodge, therefore, ever desirous to concur in a fra- 
ternal intercourse with regular Masons, doth meet that 
disposition with the utmost cordiality of sentiment, and 
requests the honour of the acting Grand Master to make 
such declarations, in their name, to the Grand Lodge of 

The circumstances which led to this good understand- 
ing were detailed by Lord Moira, from his place on the 
throne of the Grand Lodge, at the Quarterly Commu- 
nication, in February, 1806. His lordship stated that, 
during his residence in Edinburgh, he had visited the 
Grand Lodge of Scotland, and taken an opportunity of 
explaining to it the extent and importance of this Grand 
Lodge, and also the origin and situation of those Masons 
in England who met under the authority of the Duke of 

■*® Laurie thus expresses liimself on the subject: — "In the general 
history of Freemasonry, we have ah-eady given an account of the 
schism which took place in the Grand Lodge of England, by the 
secession of a number of men, who, calling themselves ancient 
Masons, invidiously bestowed upon the Grand Lodge the appellation 
of moderns. These ancient Masons, who certainly merit blame as the 
active promoters of the schism, chose for their Grand Master, in the 
year 1772. his Grace the Duke of Athol, who was then Grand Master 
elect for Scotland. From this circumstance, more than from any par- 
ticular predilection on the part of the Grand Lodge of Scotland for 
the ancient Masons, the most friendly intercourse has always subsisted 
between the two Grand Lodges ; and the Scottish Masons, from their 
union with the ancients, imbiljedthe same prejudices against the Grand 
Lodge of England, arising merely from some trifling innovations in 
ceremonial observancy, which had been inconsiderately authorized. 
From these causes, the Grand Lodges of Scotland and England, though 
the Brethren of both were admitted into each other's Lodges, never 
cherished that mutual and friendly intercourse, which, by the princi- 
ples of Freemasonry, they were hound to institute and preserve. 
Such was the relative condition of the Grand Lodge of Scotland, and 
that of England, under the Prince of Wales, on the day of the pre- 
sent election." — (Hist, of Freemasonry, p. 294.) 


Athol ; that the Brethren of the Grand Lodge of Scot- 
land he found to have been greatly mismformed upon the 
point ; having always been led to think that this Society 
was of recent date, and of no magnitude; but uovt^, 
being thoroughly convinced of their error, they were 
desirous that the strictest union and most intimate com- 
munication should subsist between this Grrand Lodge 
and the Grand Lodge of Scotland ; and, as the first step 
towards so important an object, and in testimony of the 
wishes of the Scottish Masons, his Royal Highness the 
Prince of Wales had been unanimously elected Grand 
Master of Scotland. That the said Grand Lodge had 
expressed its concern that any difference should subsist 
among the Masons of England, and that the Lodges 
meeting under the sanction of the Duke of Athol should 
have withdrawn themselves from the protection of the 
Ancient Grand Lodge of England: but hoped that mea- 
sures might be adopted to produce a reconciliation ; and 
that the Lodges now holding irregular meetings, would 
return to their duty, and again be received into the bosom 
of the Fraternity. That, in reply, his lordship had stated 
his firm belief, that this Grand Lodge would readily con- 
cur in any measures that might be proposed for establish- 
ing union and harmony among the general body of Masons ; 
yet, that after the rejection of the propositions made by 
this Grand Lodge, three years ago, it could not now, 
consistent with its honour, or the dignity of its illustrious 
Grand Master, make any further advances; but that, as 
it still retained its disposition to promote the general 
interests of the Craft, it would always be open to accept 
of the mediation of the Grand Lodge of Scotland, if it 
should think proper to interfere. 

On this representation, it was resolved that a letter 
should be written to the Grand Lodge of Scotland, 
expressive of the desire of this Grand Lodge, that the 
strictest union may subsist between the Grand Lodge of 
England and the Grand Lodge of Scotland ; and that the 
actual Masters and Wardens of the Lodges under the 
authority of the Grand Lodge of Scotland, who may be 
in London, on producing proper testimonials, shall have 
a seat in the Grand Lodge, and be permitted to vote on 
all occasions. A communication was subsequently re- 
ceived from the Grand Lodge of Ireland, desiring to co- 


operate with this Grand Lodge in every jjarticular which 
might support the authority necessary to be maintained 
by the representative body of the whole Craft over an 
individual Lodge ; and pledging itself not to countenance, 
or receive as a Brother, any person standing under the 
interdict of the Grand Lodge of England for masonic 
transgression. It w^as therefore resolved, in Quarterly 
Communication, " That the acting Grand Master be re- 
quested to express to the Grand Lodge of Ireland, the 
sense which this Grand Lodge entertains of so cordial a 

These public declarations of the Grand Lodges of 
Scotland and Ireland, appear to have made a strong im- 
pression on the ancient Masons ; who, entertaining an 
apprehension that their authority would be altogether 
superseded by such a coalition, now became anxious to 
complete the desired re-union of the two bodies ; and 
their overtures were received in a masonic spirit by the 
authorities of the constitutional sections of tlie Craft. In 
the year 1809, it was resolved, "That it is not necessary 
to continue in foi"ce any longer those measures which 
were resorted to in or about the year 1739, respecting 
irregular Masons; and we, therefore, enjoin the Lodges 
to revert to the ancient landmarks of the Society.'''' An 
occasional Lodge was then appointed, called the Lodge 
of Promulgation, as a preparatory step to carrying out 
the union of ancient and modern Masons. 

This concession was responded to on the part of the 
ancients by the resignation of the Duke of Athol, as G. 
M., and the appointment of his Royal Highness the Duke 
of Kent to that office; who publicly declared at his 
installation, in 1813, that he had consented to accept the 
office solely with a viev^^ of promoting and effiscting an 
union between the ancient and modern sections of the 
Craft. His Royal Highness the Duke of Sussex being, 
at that period, the G. M. of the Constitutional Masons, 
the two royal Brothers, v^ith the advice and assistance of 
three learned Masons from amongst the members of each 
division, framed a series of articles for the future govern- 
ment of the United Grand Lodge. On the one side were 
Waller Rod well Wright, Arthur Tegart, and James 

* ^' Preston's lUustr., p. 277, 279. 


Deans, Esqrs. ; and on the other, Thomas Harper, James 
Perry, and James Agar, Esqrs. The articles were signed, 
ratified, and confirmed, and the seal of the respective 
Grand Lodges affixed on the 1st of December, 1813. It 
was here agreed, "for the purpose of establishing and 
securing this perfect miiformity in all the warranted 
Lodges, and to place all tlie members of both Fraternities 
on the level of equality on the day of re-union," that nine 
expert Master Masons from each of the Fraternities, 
should hold a Lodge of Reconciliation, for the purpose of 
settling the ceremonies, lectures, and discipline, on such 
a basis that "there shall be the most perfect unity of 
obligation, &c., so that but one pure unsullied system, 
according to the genuine landmarks, laws, and conditions 
of the Craft, shall be maintained, upheld and practised, 
throughout the masonic world."^" When all these pre- 
liminaries were settled, the event was commemorated by 
a general Grand Festival; and it is confidently hoped 
that " the removal of all these slight differences which 
have so long kept the Brotherhood asunder, will be the 
means of establishing in the metropolis of the British 
empire, one splendid edifice of ancient Freemasonry, to 
which the whole masonic world may confidently look for 
the maintenance and preservation of the pure principles 
of the Craft, as handed down to them from time imme- 
morial, under the protection of the illustrious branches 
of the royal house of Brunswick ; and that it may produce 
the extension and practice of the virtues of loyalty, 
morality, brotherly love, and benevolence, which it has 
ever been the great object of Freemasonry to inculcate, 
and of its laws to enforce. "^^ 

I shall conclude my letter with a brief statement of 
the present condition of the Royal Arch Degree, as it is 
practised in different countries, which I consider a neces- 
sary proceeding, for reasons which I shall presently 
explain. At the union of the two Grand Chapters of 
Royal Arch Masons in England, in 1817, the title of 
" United Grand Chapter" was used until 1822, when the 
title of "Supreme Grand Chapter" was resumed. The 
English Royal Arch, at present, according to the Con- 

^ Articles of Union, iii., v. 
" Minutes of Grand Lodge, 27th Dec, 1813. 


stitutions, appears to be practised as a fourth Degree ; 
for the Past Master, though now elevated into a distinct 
grade, attended with certain exclusive privileges, is not 
essential for exaltation .^^ The articles of union, however, 
set out with a declaration that " ancient Masonry consists 
of three Degrees only, including the Royal Arch f and the 
Supreme Grand Chapter still hold the doctrine that, in 
all things, wherein by analogy, the Constitutions of Craft 
Masonry can be followed, they shall determine the laws 
of the Royal Arch. Thus the connection between Craft 
and Royal Arch Masonry is still maintained, although 
the Degrees diiEfer in design, in clothing, in constitutions, 
and in colour ; and the proceedings are regulated by 
different governing bodies. In 1813, the union of Royal 
Arch Masonry with the Craft Grand Lodge, being con- 
sidered extremely desirable, his Royal Highness the Duke 
of Sussex was invested with unlimited powers to effect 
the object. On this resolution the editor of the Free- 
masons' Quarterly Review thus remarks: — "Well had it 
been for English Freemasonry if this object had been 
carried out to its fullest extent; which, at some future 
time, may even yet be effected. "^^ In another place the 
editor remarks: — "The Royal Arch in England is not 
essentially a degree, but the perfection of the third. The 
entire system requires careful re-examination."^ 

There still exist in the English system some few 
anomalies after all the pains which have been bestowed 
upon it to make it perfect. I refer, in the first place, to 
the names of the scribes. The foundation of the second 
Temple was laid in the year b. c. 535 ; after which the 
building was hindered till b. c. 520 ; when it went on by 
order of Darius, and was dedicated b. c. 515. But Ezra 
did not come up from Babylon till the reign of Artaxer- 
xes, B. c. 457 ; being fifty-eight years after the dedication 
of the second temple, and seventy-eight after the founda- 
tions were laid; and Nehemiah was not made governor 
till twelve years later than that. They could not then 
have been participators with Z, at the rebuilding of that 

5^ A Master Mason is now considered eligible for the honours of the 
Royal Arch. 

^ Freemasons' Quarterly Review, 1842, p. 411. 
« Ibid. 1843, p, 464. 


sacred edifice. It appears probable that this anachronism 
may have arisen from Ezra having recorded in his first 
six chapters what happened from sixty to eighty years 
before his time; and from the name of Nehemiah, 
evidently, as Dean Prideaux shows, a different person of 
the same name, appearing in Ezra ii., 2, as some of those 
who accompanied Z out of Babylon. Another particular, 
about the propriety of which I entertain some doubts, is 
in the arrangement of the three Principals, Z, H, J. I 
think the order would be more correctly Z, J, H; not 
only because J is recorded, in the scripture account, as 
taking an active part with Z, but also because the office 
of Priest was acknowledged to be superior to that of 
Prophet. And there is another consideration which, in 
this case, is of some importance, that our Lord entered 
first upon the prophetical office; second, on the sacerdotal, 
viz., at Grolgotha; and tldrd, on the regal, viz., from 
Olivet. These and some other anomalies, which need 
not be specified, I should imagine, might easily be 

Our Irish Brethren entertain an opinion that the 
English mode mixes up two distinct matters ; and that 
the time used in England for the events of the Arch, 
belongs properly to another degree ; i. e. the Knight of 
the Sword and the East; while some intelligent Brethren 
consider the Royal Arch Degree to be really and truly a 
part of the Order of the East. Their system consists of 
three Degrees: the Excellent, Super-Excellent, and Royal 
Arch ; as a preliminary step to which the Past Master's 
Degree is indispensable. The two first are given in 
Lodges, by a Master and Wardens ; and the last, in a 
Chapter governed by three Principals. The Excellent 
and Super-Excellent appear to refer exclusively to the 
legation of Moses. After the candidate has received 
these, the Chapter is opened, the events of the Arch 
are transacted, and the Sublime Secrets disclosed to 

In Scotland, great changes and innovations appear to 
have occurred in Freemasonry at a very early period ; for 
in the charter granted by the Masons to William St. Clair, 
of Roslin, about 1600, mention is made of " many false 
corruptions and imperfections in the Craft," having been 

42 ORiaiN OF THE 

introduced for want of "ane patron and protector;" and 
in the confirmation of this charter, in 1630, the Brethren 
repeat that " there are very many corruptions and imper- 
fections risen and ingenerit, both amongst ourselves and 
in our said vocations." And again, in the same document, 
they give as a reason for tlie renewal of the charter, that 
it had become necessary " for reparation of the ruines 
and manifold corruptions and enormities in our said Craft, 
done by unskilful persons thereintill." What these cor- 
ruptions were, is not specified ; but it is quite clear, from 
the apprehensions of the Fraternity, that fears were en- 
tertained lest the old principles of the Order should be 
entirely extinguished. It is doubtful whether the Grand 
Scotch degree of St. Andrew was known in Scotland at 
the time when our Royal Arch was established, as it is a 
foreign degree, and, at present, forms the twenty-eighth 
of the Rite Ancien et Accepte. Its ceremonies approxi- 
mate nearer than any other to the English Royal Arch, 
although they difier widely from it. In 1755, mention is 
made of the Glasgow Royal Arch, and, four years later, 
the Stirling Royal Arch ; and subsequently, we find the 
Ayr Royal Arch, the Maybole Royal Arch, &c. ; but how 
they were constituted, or what rites were practised in 
them, is, at present, very uncertain. In the best rituals 
used in Scotland, the degree of Excellent Master, com- 
prehending three steps — improperly called veils, for the 
temple had but one veil — is supposed to be given at 
Babylon, as a test, to prevent mere Master Masons from 
participating in the privilege of building the second 
temple ; which was confined to those who were liberated 
by Cyrus, and consequently returned from Babylon. It 
was, therefore, a temporary degree ; but during the 
building, an incident occurred on which the Royal Arch 
was founded ; and hence the Scotch Masons keep up the 
Excellent as a sort of introduction to it. 

In America, we find an essential variation from any 
other system of the Royal Arch. The names of the 
officers vary materially, as also do the ceremonies. As 
n Ireland, it constitutes the Seventh Degree, although 
the intermediate steps are different. In Ireland they are, 
1. E. A P. 2. F. C. 3. M. M. 4. P. M. 5. Excellent. 
6. Super-Excellent. 7. Royal Arch ; while in America 


the fourth is Mark Master.^^ 5, P. M.^^ 6. Most Excel- 
lent Master. 7. Royal Arch. Until the year 1797, no 
Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons was organized in 
America. Before this period, and from the year 1764, 
when it was first introduced, probably by Stephen Morin 
who had been in England, and there received the degree, 
a competent number of Companions, possessed of suffi- 
cient abilities, under the sanction of a Master's warrant, 
proceeded to exercise the rights and privileges of Royal 
Arch Chapters whenever they thought it expedient and 
proper ; although in most cases the approbation of a 
neighbouring Chapter was usually obtained.^'' " This 
unrestrained mode of proceeding," says Webb,^^ " was 
subject to many inconveniences ; unsuitable characters 
might be admitted ; irregularities in the mode of working 
introduced; the purposes of the Society perverted; and 
thus the Order was degraded by falling into the hands of 
those who might be regardless of the reputation of the 
Institution." And this may be one reason why the 
ceremonies differ so essentially from those which are 
used in this country. 

The officers of a Chapter in America are, a High- 
Priest, King, Scribe, Captain of the Host, Principal 
Sojourner, Royal Arch Captain, three Grand Masters, 
Secretary, and Treasurer. The warrants issued to 
private Chapters contain an authority to open and 
hold Lodges of Most Excellent, Past, and Mark Master 
Masons ; the High-Priest, King, and Scribe, for the time 
being, to act as the Master and Wardens of the said 

^^ In the National Convention, or Meeting of Delegates from the 
Grand Lodge of the United States, at Baltimore, in 1843, it was 
decreed that, in processions, Mark Masters should rank next to 
Senior Wardens. 

^* Dalcho says that, in America, they communicate the secret of 
the chair to such applicants as have not already received it previous 
to their admission into the Sublime Lodges ; but they are informed 
that it does not give them rank as Past Masters in the Grand Lodge. 

^'' As Morin was a Grand Inspector-General of the Continental 

degrees, he would have conferred the Royal Arch in his consistory if 

e had not found it practised under the sanction of blue Masonry in 

England ; which is a presumptive proof that a regular Grand Chapter 

of the Royal Arch had not been formed by the ancients in 1764. 

^3 Monitor, p. 178. 

"* lu constituting a new Chapter, the Graad High-Priest uses the 


Thus have I detailed the chief varieties in the different 
systems of Royal Arch Masonry. My reason for being 
thus particular is, to show that the differences are 
organic, and consequently the degree cannot be of any 
great antiquity ; for if it v^ere, there would exist more 
uniformity in practice, as is the case with the symbolical 
degrees, which may undoubtedly claim a very ancient 
origin. I am afraid, however, that those Brethren and 
Companions who have been in the habit of valuing the 
Eoyal Arch on account of ics antiquity, will be sadly 
disappointed to find it thus shorn of one of its brightest 
attributes.^" But there is rather cause for congratulation 
than regret ; for what can be fairer or more desirable than 
truth ■? The degree loses none of its excellences by being 
shown to be of modern origin. If its claims to antiquity 
were not well founded, its advocates were maintaining 
a fallacy; and often found themselves in a dilemma when 
proofs were demanded, which it was impossible to pro- 
duce. The above arguments will remove many doubts, 
by at least placing the matter in a clearer point of view, 
even if they be not allowed the merit of absolute de- 
monstration. And as the case has been candidly stated, 
without any offensive reflections on the parties concerned 

following expressive form : — " By virtue of the high powers in us 
vested, I do form you, my worthy companions, into a regular Chapter 
of Royal Arch Masons. From henceforth you are authorized and 
empowered to open and hold a Lodge of Mark Masters. Past Masters, 
and Most Excellent Masters, and a Chapter of Royal Arch Masons ; 
and to do and perform all such things as thereunto may appertain ; 
conforming in all your doings to the constitution of the General 
Grand Royal Arch Chapter ; and may the God of your fathers be 
with you, and guide and direct you in all your doings." 

^ I find myself in the same predicament as Sir William Drummond 
describes in his preface to the Origines ; when he says, "In questions 
unconnected with sacred and important interests, men are rarely very 
anxious to discriminate exactly between truth and fiction ; and few 
of us would, probably, be much pleased with the result, could it now 
be cei^tainly jiroved that Troy never existed, and that Thebes, with 
its hundred gates, was no more than a populous village. It is, perhaps, 
stUl with a secret wish to be convinced against our judgment, that we 
reject, as fables, the stories told us of the Grecian Hercules, or of the 
Persian Rustem ; and that we assign to the heroes and the giants of 
eai-ly times, the strength and stature of ordinary men." So it is with 
our Royal Arch. We wish to be convinced, even against our judg- 
ment, that it is an ancient degree, because our prejudices have long 
-eii^ri&h^ so .ple^eii^ ^ icl(9e» 


h. the transaction, who, it is believed, were conscien- 
tiously persuaded that the design would confer dignity 
on the Order, no exceptions can be taken, on the score 
of partiality, to the end I have had in view, which is the 
discovery of truth. 

In this letter, my dear sir, I have been anxious to clear 
up this dark problem in the history of Masonry ; and if 
I have been successful, the time I have employed in the 
investigation has not been ill bestowed. At any rate, 
the hints I have thrown out may be of some use to others 
in discovering the origin of this sublime degree ; and even 
in that case, the labour and research have not been alto- 
gether misapplied. If I have led the enquiries into a 
proper track, I shall have accomplished that which will 
shield me from censure. 

Interdum speciosa locis, morataque recte 
Fabula, nullius veneris, sine pondere et arte, 
Valdius oblectat populum, meliusque moratur, 
Quam versus inopes rerum nugaeque canorse.®' 

It must be evident to you, my dear friend, and to every 
candid reader, that in these suggestions I have been 
actuated by no other motives than those which have 
influenced a long and active life in the cause of Free- 
masonry ; viz., — a high veneration for its sublime quali- 
ties ; a love of its principles, not to be subdued by any 
earthly influence ; and an arduous desire to remove every 
objectionable impediment. I have devoted the humble 
talents which I possess, to the dissemination of its beau- 
ties, under many disadvantages ; and I trust that I have 
contributed, in some slight degree, to increase its influence, 
and promote its popularity in the world. In my anxiety 
to place it on the pinnacle of true greatness, based on 
Charity, crowned with Wisdom, Strength, and Beauty, 
and receiving the universal testimony of human applause, 
I have been induced to investigate its claims to public 
approbation ; because I think it is fairly entitled to that 
flattering eulogium which was pronounced on the writers 
of the English Augustan period of literature. " Such an 
institution as this, in a Roman age, would have been more 
glorious than a public triumph ; statues would have been 

« Hor. de art. Poet., v. 320. 


raised, and medals would have been struck in honour of 
its supporters. Antiquity had so high a sense of grati- 
tude for the communication of knowledge, that they 
worshipped their law givers, and deified the fathers of 
science. How, then, must the)^ have acknowledged ser- 
vices like these, where every man grew wiser and better 
by the fine instruction. "^^ 

Believe me to be, my dear Sir, 

Your faithful Brother, 

Geo. Oliver, D. D. 

Scopwick Vicaxage, Nov. 5, 1846. 

^2 From an Essay sacred to the memory of Sir Richard Steele. 




llhstrateir anir (Srpiaiiuij, 













Stereotyped by 

Printed and Bmmd by 



My dear Sir and Brother, 

It was an observation of Sir H. Davy, that "men of 
genius in former times have often languished in obscurity, 
not because their merits were neglected, but because 
they were not understood. This, however, can scarcely 
happen in the present day, in which all sources of useful 
information are laid open, and in which unparalleled 
exertions have been made in the higher classes of society 
to diifuse useful improvement, and to promote all objects 
of inquiry which can benefit or enlighten the public. 
There are other uses, still greater uses, resulting from 
the communication of general and popular science. By 
means of it vulgar errors and common prejudices are 
constantly diminished. It offers new topics for conver- 
sation, and for an active exercise of the understanding ; 
and in cities, it assists the cause of morality and religion, 
by preventing the increase of gross luxury and indul- 
gence in vicious dissipation. Man is designed for an 
active being, and his spirit, ever restless, if not employed 
upon worthy and dignified objects, will often rather 
engage in mean and low pursuits, than suffer the tedious 
and listless feelings connected with indolence ; and 
knowledge is no less necessary in strengthening the mind, 
than in preserving the purity of the affections and the 

These are sentiments which I have long applied to the 
(Science of Freemasonry ; and have accordingly endea- 
voured to illustrate the science and philosophy of the 
Order, that its super-eminent merits may be open to 
public examination. Whetherthe Institution has derived 
any benefit, from my exertions, must be left to the de- 
cision of the Fraternity ; and I am not without hope that 


the sentence will be favourable. It is in conformity with 
these principles that I have considered it necessary to 
trouble you with a second letter. The old Tracing-board 
or Floor-cloth, which is prefixed to my former address, 
came under my notice too late to receive that ample con- 
sideration which it so justly merits ; and the Companions 
of the Order will not be displeased to find that I have 
devoted a few pages to its exclusive consideration ; be- 
cause it embraces doctrines of the utmost importance to 
their temporal and eternal condition, both as men and 

The old Chapter at Chester, to which this curious 
document belonged, was under the superintendence of 
one of the Grand Principals of the Supreme Grand 
Chapter in London. It worked the veils, and the scroll 
contained the first words of the Gospel of St. John. 
The prayer at the opening of the Chapter concluded 
with the words, " Grant this, God, for the great Re- 
deemer's sake. Amen." The first Book of Constitutions 
of the Royal Arch was issued by the Supreme Grand 
Chapter in 1786, and the laws were agreed to, 10th May, 
1782. I have made use of this as an authentic docu- 
ment, in the following pages, because I consider its evi- 
dence to be conclusive. The introductory address, from 
which I have quoted largely, points out the construction 
which our rulers of that period put upon " The Word," 
that it was intended " to convey to the mind some idea 
of Him by whom all things were made ; even the Word 
mentioned by St. John, who was in the beginning with 
God, and was God ; for all things were made by Him, 
and without Him was not anything made that was made ; 
even T. G. A. 0. T. U." 

The first Grand Principal by whom the above-men- 
tioned code was signed was John Allen, and he was the 
Grand Superintendent over the counties of Chester and 
Lancaster at that very period, and consequently the above 
Chapter and its mode of working were under his especial 
superintendence. His colleagues were Sir Herbert Mack- 
worth, Bart., President of the Council ; James Hesletine, 
John Brookes, and John Allen, Esqrs., who held the 
great seal of the Order in commission, and were Inspec- 
tors General ; Francis Const, Esq., Treasurer ; and James 
Galloway, Thomas Dunckerley, Richard Garland, and 


John Allen, Esqrs., Provincial Superintendents ; and 
with these were associated, all under the grand patronage 
of H. R. H. the Duke of Cumberland, Sir Peter Parker, 
Bart., Lieut.-General Rainsford, Thomas Preston, Esq., 
the Rev. John Frith, Bartholomew Ruspini, Esq., and 
other eminent Companions. 

I now proceed, without further preface, to an exami- 
nation of the Tracing-board or Floor-cloth. 

Throughout the entire system of Freemasonry, whether 
practised by heathens, Jews, or Christians, as in succes- 
sive ages we find it to have been, the Mason-word always 
appears surrounded with a peculiar mystery. Its various 
modifications, as it passed through the hands of those 
people by whom it was consecutively preserved, have 
been the theme of endless speculation ; and there is no 
nation, kindred or people, with whom it has not consti- 
tuted a curious subject of inquiry. Even its pronunci- 
ation has been variously interpreted ; and some have 
gone so far as to refrain altogether from using it, until, as 
it is now believed, the true pronunciation is irrecoverably 

The same thing is said to have happened amongst the 
Jews respecting the name of Jehovah. They were afraid 
the heathen should get possession of it, and, therefore, 
in their copies of the scriptures, they wrote it in the 
Samaritan character instead of the Hebrew or Chaldee, 
that the adversary might not make an improper use of it ; 
for they believed it capable of working miracles ; and 
held that the wonders in Egypt were performed by 
Moses, in virtue of this name being engraven on his rod ; 
and that any person, who knew the true pronunciation, 
would be able to do as much as he did. In like manner, 
the heathen had names of their gods which it was not 
lawful to utter, lest Nature should be subverted, and the 
earth dissolved. 

The followers of Mahomet have also a tradition, that 
there is a secret name of the deity which possesses won- 
derful properties, and that the only method of becoming 
acquainted with it is by being initiated into the myste- 
ries of the Ism Abla. Lane has illustrated its power by 
an anecdote from the Koran. It appears that two rebel 
angels, called Haroot and Maroot, were believed to be 
confined in the subterranean caverns which exist amidst 


the ruins of Babylon, and there suspended by the feet 
for an indefinite length of time. They had been sent 
amongst mankind as examples, and had sinned, for which 
this punishment was inflicted on them. The celebrated 
Mujahid visited them under the guidance of a Jew, who 
particularly cautioned him not to mention the name of 
God in their presence ; but when he beheld them, like 
two mountains, suspended upside down, he expressed his 
astonishment by uttering the forbidden name ; on which 
the two angels became so violently agitated, that they 
almost broke the irons which confined them, and Mujahid 
and his guide fled in the utmost consternation. 

From the above belief amongst the Jews, enforced by 
the consideration that the Shekinah actually delivered 
oracular responses to the high priest, the idea of attach- 
ing oracles to the heathen temples probably originated ; 
and in all cases the power was supposed to result from 
a cabalistic use of the name of the deity; and these 
superstitions descended to the Mahometans and the 
Christians. It was commanded in the Jewish law, that 
sentences from the scripture should be inscribed on the 
door-posts of their dwellings ;^ and therefore the Jews 
had a custom of writing the Decalogue on a square piece 
of parchment, which they rolled up, and put into a case ; 
and after inscribing the name of God within a circle on 
the outside, they affixed it to the door-posts of their 
houses, or private apartments, and considered it a talis- 
man of safety. 

It was probably from this custom that the prophet of 
Mecca recommended his followers, when they closed their 
doors at night, to repeat the name of God, which would 
render them impervious to the intrusion of evil genii. 
The Arabs have some curious anecdotes respecting the 
use that Solomon made of the sacred name. It was 
engraven on a seal ring, composed of brass and iron 
mixed ; by virtue of the former he commanded the good, 
and by the latter the evil genii. His power over them 
was unlimited, and they add, that it was by their aid that 
he built the Temple at Jerusalem. By pronouncing the 
Name, his minister Asaf transported the Queen of Sheba 
to his presence ; and performed other wonderful works. 

' Deut. vi., 9. 


The magicians of our own country made a similar use 
of the sacred name of God. When one of them desired 
to practise his art, he put on his magical robes, accom- 
panied by an invocation in this form : — " By the figurative 
mysteiy of this holy vestment, I v^^ill clothe me with 
the armour of salvation in the strength of Adonai, to 
whom be glory and praise for ever," After other cere- 
monies, which are of no moment here, he invoked the 
spirits " by the strong and mighty name of Jehovah ; 
by his holy name Tetragrammaton, and by all the won- 
derful names and attributes, Dadai, Sillon, Paracletos, 
&c., &c." We have the authority of King James for 
saying, that in his time spirits were invoked by the use 
of " circles and triangles, double and single.'''' And as 
with the Jews and Mahometans, the Christians of the 
middle ages were imbued with a firm belief that the 
name of God was a powerful protection from unclean 
spirits. The charm ran in this form : — " In nomine 
Patris, et Filii, et Spiritus Sancti, Amen. 4- a + g + 
I -|- a -i". Tetragrammaton. -1- Alpha + Omega. + 
A. i2. -I- Primogenitus, -t- Sapienta -|- Virtus. + Jesus 
Nazarenus Rex Judeorum. + Fill Domini. 4- Miserere 
mei. + Amen. + ]\Iatheus. + Marcus. -|- Lucas. 4- Jo- 
hannes. -1- Mihi succurrite et defendite. 4- Amen. 4-." 

The mystery which overshadows the Word of Free- 
masonry is a recommendation which has always been 
replete with interest, and constitutes the excitement 
that leads the inquirer from one degree to another, till 
he is rewarded by a participation in this ineffable secret. 
It is in vain that the oppugner of Masonry aifects to 
believe that we possess no such claims on the attention, 
because he conscientiously feels that he is feigning an 
objection which cannot be substantiated. He envies 
our knowledge, although prejudice prevents him from 
sharing in the advantages it conveys. It is in vain that 
apostate Masons tell the world, that they themselves 
were urged forward from step to step, under the promise 
that this great secret would be ultimately revealed, but 
which was always evaded under one pretext or another. 
The Brethren of the Order glory in the possession of a 
secret which never has been, nor ever can be revealed. 
" It is as a strong tower ; the righteous runneth into it 
and is safe."^ 

« Prov. xviii.. 10. 


At the establishment of the Royal Arch Degree during 
the last century, a passage from the first chapter of St. 
John's Gospel was introduced, in which the Logos, or 
Word, is pronounced to be T. G. A. O. T. U., or Christ, 
or God, on the authority of Holy Scripture ; for Jehovah 
said, by the mouth of his prophet, " I have sworn by 
myself, and the Word is gone out of my mouth in 
righteousness, and shall not return ; that unto me every 
knee shall bow, and every tongue shall swear."^ Now 
these very words are twice applied in the New Testa- 
ment to Jesus Christ. St. Paul says,^ "We shall all 
stand before the judgment seat of Christ; for it is 
• written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow 
to me, and every tongue shall confess." And again, 
more plainly,^ "At the Name of Jesus every knee shall 

The passage above referred to, was used by the holy 
Evangelist to refute certain heterodox doctrines, which 
had been propounded by the Gnostics, to the effect that 
"the Supreme Deity first generated an only begotten 
Son, who again begat the Word, which was inferior to 
the first born. That Christ was inferior to the Word. 
That there were two Spirits distinct from Christ, the 
one called Life, and the other Light; and that the 
Creator, or the G. A. 0. T. U., was a still lower spirit, 
called Demiurgus, who formed the world out of eternal 
matter." These absurdities were set at rest by the 
passage in question; which was the beginning of his 
Gospel — " In the beginning was the Word, and the 
Word was with God, and the Word was God. All things 
were made by him ; and without him was not any thing 
made that was made. In him was Life; and the Life 
was the Light of men. And the Light shineth in dark- 
ness, and the darkness comprehended it not." 

These principles are clearly illustrated by an Old 
Tracing-board, or Floor-cloth, of the degree, of which I 
have prefixed an Engraving to my account of the " Origin 
of the English Royal Arch." It was used nearly a 
century ago in the Chapter at Chester ; and exhibits the 
interlacing triangles, within a circle, in the centre of the 
Tablet; while at the foot appear the names of the three 

" Isa. xlv., 23. * Rom. xiv. 10, 11. ^ Phil, ii., 10. 


Grand Masters at the building of King Solomon's Temple, 
in Hebrew and Latin ; and certain implements, belong- 
ing equally to the Tabernacle and the Temple, are dis- 
posed round the border. The upper part or head of the 
design is dignified by an arched fillet or canopy, contain- 
ing the inscription en apxh hn o Aoroi:, as the crowning 
glory of the degree ; which confirms the opinion I have 
always entertained respecting the commencement of the 
Sacred Roll, said to have been found in the vault. 

Respecting this passage of scripture, I have elsewhere 
stated that the early Christians considered it to be a 
formula in use from the most ancient times, and adopted 
by St. John because it constituted an unanswerable argu- 
ment in proof of the doctrine which he was anxious to 
establish, viz., the eternal divinity of Christ, and his 
identity with Jehovah, as the Creator of the world. It 
is recorded by Philostorgius, and after him by Nicephorus, 
that at the clearing of the foundations on mount Moriah, 
when Julian the apostate commenced his insane attempt 
to rebuild the temple, a stone was taken up that covered 
the mouth of a deep vault sunk into the rock. One of 
the workmen was let down by a rope fastened round his 
waist, and found some water at the bottom, out of which, 
in the centre of the vault, rose a pedestal, on which lay 
a Roll or Book, wrapped up in a covering of fine linen. 
Being drawn up, and the Roll unfolded, it was found to 
contain the Holy Scriptureis, beginning with the words 
which are inscribed on the uppermost fillet in the old 
Floor-cloth above referred to.*' 

This may be true, or it may not ; but I am persuaded 
that the first words of St. John's Grospel were used in 
the degree, because it was intended to be a vehicle for 
promulgating the essential doctrines of Christianity. And 
this conclusion appears to be confirmed by the following 
passage in the old lecture of the degree — "The Com- 
panions enter into the Chapter upon the Holy Bible and 
the double equilateral triangle, in commemoration of the 
happy discovery of the Roll, which was the emblem or 
prototype of the Old Testament ; and the double triangle 
placed thereon is a representation of Him who originated 
the New Testament as a sequel to that Sacred Volume ; 

8 Philost., 1. vii., c. 14. Niceph,, 1. x., p. 76. 


even the divine Trinity in Unity." And in another place it 
explains that " the three Great Lights are symbolical of the 
Sublime Word in three situations; and also that effulgent 
Light w^hich shines forth in the Gospel, and displays the 
mystery of the Trinity, on which every Christian Brother 
rests his hopes of final salvation." And, as a triumphant 
conclusion to this portion of the argument, the original 
formula of opening the Chapter contained this remark- 
able passage in triad form — 

'* In the beginning was the Word, 
And the Word was with God, 
And the Word was God." 

The Word here mentioned was the true Name of God 
in every age of the world, and was called Jehovah 
amongst the patriarchs and Jews. Moses said to the 
latter, " The Lord (Jehovah) God of your fathers hath 
sent me unto you. This is my Name for ever."''' 

"And God himself," says Dr. Willet,^ "Jehovah, 
Christ, the Mediator both of the Old and New Testa- 
ment, was the giver of the law ; and that it was he him- 
self that talked with Moses, by these reasons it is made 
plain. 1. Because he is called Jehovah, wliich is the 
proper and essential Name of God. 2. Moses himself 
saith, Jehovah spake unto you out of the midst of the 
fire. And 3, because Origen saith. In the end of the 
world Jesus Christ became man ; but before his mani- 
festation in the llesh, he was the Mediator between God 
and man ; and Calvin adds. That there never was any 
intercourse between God and man, but by Jesus Christ." 

David and Hosea make the same declaration. The 
former says, "Thy Name, O Lord, (Jehovah) endureth 
for ever; and thy memorial, Lord, (Jehovah) through- 
out all generations;"^ and the latter, "Even the Lord 
God of Hosts, Jehovah is his Narae."^" The Being spoken 
of in these passages is the same divine personage as 
Jesus, the founder of Christianity, pronounced by St. 
John to be T. G. A. 0. T. U., or the Creator of the 
world; which is confirmed by St. Paul — "Thou Lord 
(Christ) in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the 

' Exod. iii., 15. ,« Hexapla, p. 302. 

• Psalm oxsxv., 13. "^ Hosea xii., 5. 


earth ;"" which is but a reiteration of what the psalmist 
had already affirmed of Jehovah^" Of old hast Thou 
(Jehovah) laid the foundation of the earth."^^ Again, 
the prophet Zechariah had said—" I will dwell in the 
midst of thee, said Jehovah ;"'^ and " they shall look on 
me (Jehovah) whom they have pierced ;"i* both of which 
were applied expressly to the Saviour of mankind by St. 
John — " The Word was made flesh, and dwelt amongst 
las."^^ And " they shall look on him (Jesus Christ) whom 
they pierced."!^ 

Such was the view which our Brethren of the last 
century took on this important subject ; and in a short 
Essay on Freemasonry, prefixed to the first copy of the 
Laws and Regulations of the Royal Arch, which were 
agreed to in the year 1782 by the Constitutional Grand 
Lodge of England, and written, as I conceive, by Bro. 
Dunckerley, some excellent observations on this Name 
occur, which merit preservation. " Speculative Masonry, 
or the Royal Arch, is subdivided into as many distinct 
branches as there are arts and sciences, and the parts as 
various as there are subjects for investigation ; and we 
use certain signs, tokens, and words ; but it must be ob- 
served, that when we use that expression, and say The 
Word, it is not to be understood as a watchword only, 
after the manner of those annexed to the several degrees 
of the Craft, but also theologically, as a term, thereby 
to convey to the mind some idea of that Great Being 
who is the sole author of our existence, and to carry 
along with it the most solemn veneration for his sacred 
Name and Word, as well as the most clear and perfect 
elucidation of his power and attributes that the human 
mind is capable of receiving. And that this is the light 
in which the Name and Word hath always been consid- 
ered, from the remotest ages, not only amongst us 
Christians and the Jews, but also in the gentile or 
heathen world, may be clearly understood from number- 
less writers ; but to mention only two. Cicero tells us 
that they did not dare to mention the names of their 

" Heb. L, 10. 12 Psalm cii., 25. >3 Zech. ii., 10. 

'* Zech. xiL, 10. is John i., 14. 

16 John xix., 37. See more of this in my •' Apology for the Free- 
masons," p. 20. 


gods ; and Lucan says that but to name the Name would 
shake the earth. Amongst the Jews, we all know with 
what a just and aw^ful veneration they look upon it ; 
which many of them carry so far as to believe that but 
to pronounce the Word would be sufficient to work 
wonders and remove mountains. 

" Josephus says that the Name was never known till 
the time that God told it to Moses in the wilderness, and 
that he himself did not dare to mention it, for that it 
was forbidden to be used, except once in the year, by the 
High-Priest alone, when he appeared before the Mercy 
Seat on the day of expiation. He further adds, that it 
was lost through the wickedness of man ; and hence has 
arisen a difference of opinion ; some supposing the Word 
itself lost ; others, the import or meaning only ; and 
many, the manner of its delivery ; and from hence con- 
tend that Moses did not ask the Almighty for his name 
to carry to his Brethren, but for the true delivery or pro- 
nunciation only. How far that might be the case, is to 
us uncertain ; but it is certain that the true mode of 
delivery cannot now be proved from any written record ; 
first, because it is capable of so many variations from the 
manner of annexing the Masoretic points, which points 
were not extant in the days of Moses; and secondly, 
because the language now in use amongst the Jews is so 
corrupt and altered from that in which he wrote, that 
none of them, except some few of their learned, under- 
stand any thing of it ; for which reason the Jews call it 
n-iiBTsn d'^ Shem Hamphoreth, the unutterable Name. 
Hence is our learned Brother, Pythagoras, his rsT^ay^afifia. 
rov or quaternion. 

"Philo, the learned Jew, tells us not only that the 
Word was lost, but also the time when, and the reason 
why. But to make an end of these unprofitable disputes 
among the learned, be it remembered, that they all concur 
with Royal Arch Masons in others much more essential ; 
first, that the Name or Word is expressive of Self-ex- 
istence AND Eternity ; and secondly, that it can be 
applicable only to that Great Being who was, and is, 
and WILL be. It is also generally allowed, that in its full 
sense and meaning, it must be incomprehensible by a 
human capacity. Nevertheless we hope, so far as it hath 
yet pleased the Omnipotent to reveal it, it is reserved 


for the honour of this Society to shew forth to the world 
its Glory, Power, and Import, in a much more perfect, 
clear, and ample manner, than is now generally done." 

These observations are very judicious, and served well 
to introduce the new degree, and recommend it to the 
notice of the Fraternity. It is much to be regretted, how- 
ever, that Bro. Dunckerley, whose influence in the Order 
was amply sufficient for the purpose, did not improve the 
degree from the materials which he derived from the 
ancient Masons, because he could not fail to perceive 
their incongruity, by at least a reconstruction of the 
Word which he has so learnedly described in the above 
cited passage ; for whoever it might be that first arranged 
its members in their present from, certainly committed 
a capital error, and grievously mistook the principles on 
which the degree appears to have been founded. 

It is doubted by the Jews whether the word Jehovah 
be the true name of God, for they consider it to be irre- 
coverably lost by disuse ; and regard its pronunciation as 
one of the mysteries which will be revealed at the com- 
ing of the Messiah ; and they attribute its loss to the 
illegality of applying the Masoretic points to such a 
Sacred Name, by which a knowledge of the proper vowels 
is forgotten. It is even said in the Gemara of Abodah 
Zara, that God permitted a celebrated Hebrew scholar 
to be burned by a Roman Emperor, because he had been 
heard to pronounce the Sacred Name with points. 

The author of the above tract, however, very properly 
alludes to the Tetragrammaton as forming the basis of 
the lost Word ; which in the Jewish writings is spelled 
Jehovah or Jah. But in the forms which it now assumes 
it is either quadriliteral, as nin^, or bihteral, as n-i, which is 
one of the titles of the Messiah, and plainly refers to the 
advancing of a R. A. Mason ; for 3 + 5 + 7 are equal to 
lO"! -I- 5n = 15. This word, as numbered by the cabalists, 
is '1, 10 + n, 5 + 1, 6 + n 5 = 26. The mystical cube and 
plumb-line, and the figures which compose it being added 
together give the number 8. Now the word IHSOTi:, 
corresponding with the above word t^, being numbered 
makes/, 10+^, 8 + ^, 200+O, 70+r, 400 + ^, 200-888, 
or THREE cubes. But the Royal Arch Degree is founded 
on the number three, and. therefore, each member of the 
Word ought to have been triliteral. Again, the cabalists 


used this form of the Word, which is an illustration of 
the same principle, 

Sometimes expressed thus, triangularly, 

This designation of the Ineffable Name was a symbol 
of the creation ; and the mysterious union of T. Gr. A. 0. 
T. U. with his creatures was in the letter n He, which 
they considered to be the agent of Almighty power, and 
to enable the possessor of the Name to work miracles. 
It was also the symbol of the Trinity in Unity. 

Amongst the Syrians, the Chaldeans, the Phoenicians, 
and others, the Ineffable Name of the Deity was Bel, 
Bal, Bui, Baal, or Belin. There are some doubts whether 
it was not biliteral ; for we find K\ El, ba Bel, and ^s<-3K 
Ab-El, signifying Pater-Deus. The triliteral name was 
^-n Baal. 

Again, the Egyptians and Hindoos reverenced On, or 
Om,^. e. Aun, or Aum, as the name oftheir chief deity; who 
was also considered by the Canaanites as the Creator, or 
the prolific power, probably the solar orb; and the same 
name is compounded in the Philistine deity Dag-On, or 
in other words, the receptacle of On, which, perhaps, in 
their physical theology might refer to the ark of Noah. 
It is also found in the names of places in the same 
country, as Tzid-Aun, (Sidon), Herm-On, Hebr-On, &c. ; 
and the Chaldean Cannes was 0-Aun-Nes. Amongst 
the Jews, during the Theocracy, the worship of Tera- 
phim, whatever they might be, was connected with that 
of Aun. Thus the original of 1 Sam. xv., 23, is — "As 
the sin of divination is rebellion, so is Aun and Teraphim 
stubbornness and iniquity." And the same thing occur- 
red at a later period ; thus Zechariah accuses them by 
saying, "Your Teraphim have announced Ann;" which 


in our translation is called " vanity," and was a solar 
oracle, which is nothing but vanity.^' The fact appears 
to be, that they consulted the God Aun though the me- 
dium of the Teraphim, as Jehovah was consulted by 
Urim and Thummim, or perhaps before the cherubic 
emblem, which is called by the Jews, " the very pith 
and marrow " of their mode of worship. Faber has taken 
a somewhat similar view of this subject, and concludes 
that, " by a plausible though wretched abuse, the Che- 
rubim, or Seraphim, or Teraphim, became the symbolic 
faticidal gods of paganism ; and as the principal hero-god 
of that system was thought to have migrated into the 
sun, and was thence astronomically worshipped as the 
solar deity, the Teraphim are, by the inspired writers, 
justly associated with the Egyptian On, who is the same 
as the Indo-Scythic Om of the Brahmins."^^ It is remark- 
able that this word was also used by the early Christians 
to express the divine Being whom they worshipped, 
O QN^ 6 Tjv, 6 sQiofiEvos, " God, which is, and was, and 
is to come."^^ But it must be borne in mind that the 
heathen, while acknowledging their chief god to be the 
maker of the universe, did not understand it in the sense 
which we affix to it. They held that God built the 
world out of existing materials ; while the Jews, as well as 
Christians, believe that he created it out of nothing. 

The application of these materials to the purpose of 
Royal Arch Masonry would have been easy; and yet the 
usual combinations of them have failed to form a word 
in strict correspondence with the evident intention of the 
founders of the degree ; for though it was termed the 
fourth degree, and included a reference to the Tetragram- 
maton, yet the Triad was considered to be its distin- 
guishing element. The chief officers, the sojourners, the 
original Grand Lodges, the lights, the form of the jewels, 
and other particulars, are so many unanswerable proofs 
of it. The frequent references to a trinity in unity, as 
well as the construction of the word itself, leave us no 
choice in the interpretation of the design which was 
intended to be conveyed in this sublime degree. 

It was evidently a determination on the part of its 

" Zectu X., 2. 18 Eight Diss., vol. i., p. 391. 

" Eev. i., 4. 


founders to construct a link, by which FreemaBonry 
might be unequivocally connected with Christianity ; for 
the word, however it might be compounded, resolves it- 
self into Jehovah, which was the name of the divine 
Logos, or Christ, being formed of sr^, the essence^ O iiN, 
He who simply is, and Mi!i, always existing, which is the 
character assigned to Christ in the Apocalypse — "He 
who was, and is, and shall be — the Eternal/'^" This 
hypothesis is of sufficient importance to merit a free 

Before the fall of man we have plain indications of the 
appearance of Jehovah, or the word of God in para- 
dise.^^ After our first parents had sinned, "they heard 
the VOICE of Jehovah walking in the garden."^^ Now, 
who was this "voice of Jehovah ?" It could not be God 
the Father, because St. John positively affirms that no 
man hath seen God at any time."^ And adds, that "he 
declares himself by means of his only begotten Son." 
It must, therefore, have been Christ, who is called else- 
where, "the Angel of the Covenant," "the Branch," 
"Jehovah our Righteousness," &c., that thus conferred 
with our erring progenitors. This is confirmed by the 
terms of the prophecy of Balaam, who calls his victori- 
ous Star, who is to smite and annihilate the worshippers 
of On and Om, Aun, and Baal Peor, by this very title of 
the " Voice of Jehovah. "^^ This appears to have been 
the opinion of the early Christians, for Theophilus Anti- 
ochenus^ says expressly, "the Word, or voice of God, 
came into paradise and talked with Adam." 

This is the sense in which the passage is explained by 
the Targumists; for they agree to render it, " they heard 
the WORD of the Lord God walking, &c. ; the Jerusalem 
Targum paraphrases the beginning of Gen. iii., 9, by 
"the WORD of the Lord called unto Adam." The word, 
therefore, that called was the word or voice that 
walked."^^ Indeed, the old Chaldee paraphrase, the 
Jerusalem Targum, and the most learned rabbinical com- 
mentators, interpret Jehovah who communed with Adam 

^ Rev. xi., 17. 21 (^en. ii., 16-18. ^ Gen. iii., 8. 

^ John i., 18. 24 Numb, xxiv., 17. ^ Ad AutoL, 1. 2. 

^' See Maimon. Mor. Nevich., p. i., c. 24 ; Tzet. Hammor, s. Beresh. 
apud Owen. Exerc. x., in Heb. vi., 1 ; Faber, 8 diss., i. 28. 


to be the Memra or Messias. And Jonathan and Onkelos 
add, that "he judged the old world by his Word;" that 
he " made a covenant with Abraham by his Word;" and 
that "he would redeem mankind by his Word."^^ 

In like manner, Christians of all ages and times have 
held the opinion, that Jehovah who apjDeared to man in 
the time of the patriarchs was Christ. Thus, for exam- 
ple, that which the angel spake to Hagar^^ is said to be 
spoken by Jehovah ;^^ and the same angel said, "I am 
the God (Jehovah or El Shaddai) of Bethel." ^^ This 
angel, who is styled in other places the Angel of the 
Covenant,^^ the Angel of God's presence,^^ and the Name 
of God,*' was no other than our Lord Jesus Christ, 
according to the unanimous opinion of all antiquit}^ 

If further proofs of this invaluable truth be wanting, 
they are at hand. The Almighty says, by the prophet 
Isaiah,^* "I am Jehovah, and tliere is none else; there is 
no God beside me." But St. John says, " the Word was 
God;"^^ and St. Paul affirms, "Christ came, who is God 
over all; God blessed for ever."^'' Therefore Christ is 
Jehovah or God. The glorious Name which was given 
to Moses at the burning bush,^^ was assumed by Christ 
himself, when he said,^^ "Before Abraham was, I AM," 
not I was, but I AM. This name, iT^nx, is, therefore, 
esteemed by the modern Jews inferior to the Tetragram- 
maton, because, they say, though it demonstrates the 
divine essence, yet it forms only a part of that sacred 
name; for numerically it is only twenty-one, while the 
Tetragrammaton is twenty-six. 

The most ancient Jewish writers, instead of Jehovah 
use the name Memra, by which they intend to signify the 
Son of God. Now, as some of these learned men lived 
before and about the time of Christ, their opinions on 
this point may be received as positive evidence of the 
fact. In the passages of their sacred writiags, where the 
name of Jehovah occurs, they substitute Memra Jeho- 
vah, or the Word of God, to whom they ascribe the 

^ Jerusaleiu Targiun on Gen. xlix., 18. ^^ Gen. xvi., 7-11 

2« Gen. xvi., 13. ^o Q^n. xsxi., 13. ^' Mai. iii., 1. 

^2 Isai. Ixiii., 9. =» Exod. xxiii., 21. ^'^ Isai. xlv., 5. 

3* John i., 1. 36 Rom. i., 8. ^7 Exod. iii., 14 

»8 John viii., 58. 


creation of the world, as we do to Christ ; and all the 
divine manifestations which we find there, they say were 
effected by Memra. 

In addition to this evidence, w^hich is exceedingly 
valuable, we may also remark that in our authorized 
translation of the scriptures, the Septuagint version has 
been followed in rendering the word Jehovah by Kv^ios, 
or Lord; and whenever the word Lord appears in the 
English Bible, it stands for Jehovah in the original ; to 
which name the Jews associate much superstition and 
mystery. Many of the ancient lathers assert, that in 
their copies of the Bible the Name was written in Sama- 
ritan characters, that it might not be polluted by the 

If to the above reasoning we subjoin the testimony of 
early Christian writers on this point, it will complete the 
chain of evidence, that the name of Jehovah, and the 
Word spoken of by St. John, and inserted in the Tracing- 
board of the English Royal Arch, are one and the same 
person. Justin Martyr^** says — "Our Christ conversed 
with Moses out of the bush, in the appearance of lire." 
And again"*" — "It was the Son of God who spoke to 
Moses." Irenccus affirms,*^ that "it w^as the Word of 
God who, in a divine and glorious manner, conversed 
with the patriarchs." Tertullian is equally decisive on 
the subject, when he tells his adversary that "it was 
Christ w^ho conversed upon earth from the beginning; 
and that it was He who appeared on all occasions to the 
patriarchs and prophets. ""*' Athanasius, Hilary, Basil, 
and Cyril of Jerusalem, speak to the same effect; and 
our Bishop Bull affirms, that it was the unanimous 
opinion of all primitive antiquity. 

A further proof of the Christian reference of the Royal 
Arch Degree is found, not only in certain passages of the 
lectures which represent " the way, the truth, and the 
life," as characteristic of the Redeemer, and a direct 
mention of " the second person in the glorious Trinity," 
but also in its characteristic symbol or mark ; for the 
TRIPLE TAU was uukuown before the dispensation of 

« Apol., 1. « Apol., 2. « L. iii., c. 11. 

*2 Adv. Marc, 1. ii.,4,27. 


Christ was promulgated, and the main hinge, on which 
all its illustrations were suspended, was the advent of 
Shiloh when the sceptre had departed from Judah. Now 
a sceptre, being figuratively put for government, because 
it is an ensign of royalty, it referred literally to tlie just 
and righteous government of King Solomon, but mystic- 
ally to the government of Christ, which is more just 
and righteous, over the faithful people of God, and is, 
therefore, emphatically called "a sceptre of righteous- 

The Jews, however, affect to believe that the word 
shebet in the Hebrew text, which we interpret a sceptre, 
signifies a rod, which is an instrument of chastisement; 
and, therefore, they contend that it means, that their 
dispersion amongst strange nations shall not cease till 
their Messiah shall come to deliver them from it. Chrisl 
began his public ministry at a solemn jubilee ; and, there- 
fore, he said — " The Lord hath anointed me (as the Christ) 
to preach the Gospel to the poor, he hath sent me (as 
Shiloh, or the Apostle) to heal the broken hearted, to 
proclaim deliverance to the captives, and restoration of 
sight to the blind, to set at liberty the bruised, and to 
preach the acceptable year of the Lord."^^ Mr. Taylor, 
after proving satisfactorily that the Shiloh here mentioned 
could be no other than Christ, adds — "Our Lord was 
the only branch of David's family entitled to rule, and 
if the royalty had continued in that family, he would 
have sat upon the throne of Israel ; and he dying with- 
out issue, the ruling branch of that family became 
extinct; so that, after his death, there was no longer any 
possibility of the continuance of the kingly office in the 
direct and proper line of David. The person who should 
have held the sceptre was dead ; the direct descent 
of the family expired with him, the sceptre was hondjide 
departed ; since, first it was actually swayed by a stran- 
ger or strangers (Herod and the Romans) ; and, secondly, 
no one who could possibly claim it, though he might 
have been of a collateral branch of David's house, could 
have been the direct legal claimant by birth-right ; for 
that person was crucified! Such is the language Provi- 

« Heb. i., 8. « Lixke iv., 18. 


dence put into the mouth of Pilate — ' Shall I crucify 
YOUR KING?' 'Yes,' say the Jews, 'we reject the lineal 
descendant of David, and prefer Caesar.' Rome triumphs ; 
David expires in the person of his son ; and with him 
expires all direct claim of right to the sceptre. The 
sceptre is departed from David, and if from David — ■ 
from Judah — Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the 

In the Royal Arch Degree the name of Grod is depicted, 
as in the centre of our Floor-cloth, by a double interla- 
cing triangle, thus s^ , inscribed within a dark circle, 
representing unlimited space beyond the reach of light, 
and the top representing the "light shining in darkness, 
and the darkness comprehending it not,"'*'^ as a continua- 
tion of the divine sentence at the summit of the Floor- 
cloth.''^ This had been used a a Christian symbol, to 
denote the two natures of Jehovah, the God-man, for 
centuries before the Royal Arch Degree was ever thought 
of. In this form ^, or the above, it was called the 
pentangle, or seal of Solomon, and the shield of David, 
and was employed all over Asia as a preservative against 
witchcraft, in which superstition the Jews are said to 
have participated ; for they used written charms enclosed 
in the above hexagonal or pentangular figure, and dis- 
posed cabalistically, which were worn about their necks. 
It constituted the Pythagorean pentalpha, and was the 
symbol of health. Thus Pireius says — 
"Pentagonum, salutis symbolum fuisse ; 
autem illi hujusmodi ostendisse, triangu- 
lum triplicem invicem insertum ex lineis 
quinque constantem; in quibus TriElA 
scriptura erat. Sic enim sal us sanitasve 
G-rsece appellatur." 

Taylor's Calmet in loc. ''^ John i., 5. 

"^ I have at length succeeded in obtaining the name and number of 
the Chapter at Chester, whei-e the above Floor-cloth was used. It 
was called the Chapter of St. Michael, No. 24, and is dated Feb. 9, 
1781. The warrant differs very little from the present form, except 
that it is dedicated to " the Almighty Jah, jZj." It is signed by the 
three Chiefs, two Scribes, and three Sojourners, and also by three 
Inspectors Greneral. An old jewel, which belonged to this Chapter, 
has a mitre upon it, on which is inscribed " Holiness to the Lord." 


Christians used it to represent the 
five wounds of Christ, thus ; and hence 
it was formerly referred, in the old 
lectures of Masonry, to the birth, life, 
death, resurrection, and ascension of 
the Saviour of mankind. And the for- 
mula which was used, even so recent- 
ly as the early part of my masonic 
life, is worth preserving : — 

" What do we learn by his birth ? He being the day- 
star of mercy, hath risen to conduct our feet in the paths 
of peace and holiness. 

" What by his life ? All the moral and social virtues, 
he being the way, the truth, and the life. 

" What by his death ? That our debt is paid, the law 
satisfied, and our redemption completed. 

'' What by liis resurrection ? A victory over death and 
the grave, wherein resteth our justification. 

"What by his ascension? That he is gone before to 
prepare a place for his faithful people, that where he is, 
there may they be also." 

The above symbol is very common in Asia, even at the 
present day. Mr. Drummond Hay, speaking of the 
ornaments in the harem of a Moor, mentions " a brass 
frame composed of two intersecting triangles, as a 
chandelier." These kind of lamps or lanterns are very 
common ; and in the palace of a monarch they are often 
of great magnificence. I subjoin an engraving of one of 
these lanterns, with the pentangle of Solomon attached."^^ 

The next great and distinguishing symbol of the 
Royal Arch Degree is the tau cross triplified,|Ij. And 
as the former was the seal of Solomon, and considered 
capable of warding off earthly dangers, so is this the seal 
of Christ, and competent to guard the recipient from 
such dangers as are spiritual. This latter seal is baptism, 
accompanied by the crucial sign. Thus Valesius, and 
others expound it, and term it " the seal of our Lord," 
because in the very nature of it there is contained a cove- 
nant made between God and man, of which the sign or 

^^ In the "Landmarks of Masonry," this pentangular symbol is 
fully illustrated ; and I refer the curious reader to vol. ii., pp. 355 and 
659, for further information ; and some remarks may also be foliud in 
the "Theocratic Philosophy," p. 169. 



symbol of the cross is the seal. Hence Thecla said to St. 
Paul — " Give me the seal of Christ and no temptation 
shall have power over me." And the shepherd Hermas, 
speaking of some who had died after baptism, says — 
" They were sealed with the seal of the Son of God, and 
are entered into the kingdom of God. For before a person 
receives the sign of the Son of God, he is consigned 
over to death ; but wdien he receives that seal, he is freed 
from death and consigned over to life." And hence the 
cross was the symbol of life ; and when triplified, it was 
an emblem of life eternal. 

This remarkable figure, at its first construction, was 
an emblem used by the eastern Christians as a monogram 
of the sacred name of Christ. The original form appears 
to have been this ^k , a combination of the Greek xp 



(Chr),"^ the two first letters in XPIITOI; and it was 
placed, as a talisman of protection, on the summit of the 
ensign staff by Constantine ; thus occupjring the same 
honourable position as the Egyptian ibis, the Athenian 
owl, or the Roman eagle. It soon became an universal 
Christian symbol, although the form of its construction 
underwent many variations, as may be seen in tha 
curious work of Aringhius, called "Koma Subterranea ;" 
amongst which is found the triple tau of our Royal Arch 
Degree, and the motto was, in hoc sigmo vixces ! It was 
subsequently transferred to the official seals of several 
Roman pontiffs ; from whence it passed into general use 
in all Christian countries ; and formed part of an inscrip- 
tion on an old bell in Great Grimsby church, of which I 
subjoin a correct copy. 

The above monogram merged into the triple tau during 
the life-time of Constantine, and appears not only on his 
coins, but on those of his successors ; and certain con- 
tractions afterwards sprang into use, which were as 
highly reverenced as the original symbol. First we find 
the two first letters in the Greek name of Jesus, IHEOYS, 
used as a monogram, or mysterious sign, to represent the 
name of Jehovah or Christ, which were sometimes so 

^^"The bas-reliefs of the ancient ambones of the Cathedral of 
Rouen, now incrusted into the wall behind the choir, are curious as 
exhibiting in distinct rows, the fish, the dove, the lamb, the stag, the 
peacock, &c., the whole sacred menagerie, as Mr. Hope calls it, of 
symbohsm. These tombs throw an interesting hght on the origin of 
three tufts or rays of glory, emblematical of the Trinity, which sur- 
round our Saviour's head in the productions of early Italian painting, 
and even in the early works of Raphael, Titian, and their contempo- 
raries. ^J have little doubt of their being a corruption of the well 
known monogram of our Saviour's name, formed by the Greek letters 
X and P." (Lord Lindsay's Christian Art., vol. 1., p. 103.) 


disposed as to form the triple tau, the I being placed upon 
the H in the form of a cross, thus p^; and subseqently, 
when the third letter of the above name, ^ or C, was 
added, the symbol assumed this form Ij3:|C, for which the 

western church substituted the Roman letters, / /TC 

which are still profusely used by the Roman Catholics ; 
and many protestant pulpits are inscribed with the sacred 
J f\ S.s" 

The above are the initial letters of tlie Grreek inscrip- 
tion placed by Pilate on the cross of our blessed Saviour, 
of which I subjoin a fac-simile, taken by Dr. Adam 
Clarke from a copy of the Codex Bezce, which was first 
delineated in the fourth century, and resembles the auto- 
graphs of the earliest ages of Christianity. 



It is well known that the Greek 2" was anciently con- 
structed like the Roman C, and was so used for several 
centuries; and therefore the IHC of the eastern church 
was improperly changed by its rival of the west to the 
Roman IHS. 

Occasionally we find an abbreviation of both the 

*° In a letter which I have recently received from Bro. Willoughby, 
of Birkenhead, he says — "I was struck with an observation which 
fell from an old Scottish Mason, who was exalted on our last Chapter 
day. After the ceremony he was looking round the room, in order 
to take a calmer view of the arrangements, and seeing the plj upon 
the plinth of the altar, he asked me, ' What are you doing with that 
figure here ?' ' Why do you ask V said I. ' Because it is what we 
call the Holy Jesus,' was his reply. He is a builder in an extensive 
way, and said that he had often met with it in old churches, and that 
it was always called ' The Holy Jesus,' or Jesus the. Saviour of man-. 
kind. IHS." 


names of Christ used as a monogram ; thus IC XC, 
because these letters were supposed to represent the 
position of Christ's right hand when elevated in bene- 
diction, as M. Didron explains it, " L'index s'allonge 
comme un I ; le grand doigt se courbe connne un C, 
ancien sigma des Grecs, le pouce et I'annulaire se croisent 
pour faire un X, et le petit doigt s'arrondit pour figurer 
un C. Tout cela IC-XC, monogramme Grec de Jesus- 
Christ (^Ir^aovO X^«(7ToC)."^^ It was sometimes expressed 
I|I{C XC, and sometimes XPC. And it does not vitiate 
the argument to consider that this monogram Ip-|y was 
the mysterious badge of the Jesuits, and worn upon the 
sleeve of their garments ; as if, to use the language of 
Henry Burton, "with the name of Jesvs, inchanter-like, 
they would coniure downe the spirit of truthe, and 
coniure vp the spirit of pontitician errour and sedition 
againe in this our churche."^'-^ It rather confirms our 
view of the subject, by showing that this triple tau or 
cross was publicly used and sanctioned for ages by the 
highest authorities of the Christian church. 

Another form which this ever varying monogram 
assumed was the vencapiscis, an ancient Platonic symbol, 
but identified with Christ, (and in a fresco painting of 
the Last Judgment, in the chapel of the Arena at Padua, 
by Giotti, the Saviour is represented as seated witiiin the 
vesica piscis),^^ by the substitution of a Greek word for 
a fish, ixeT2:, the letters of which formed the initials of 
the name and character of the Redeemer. 'Iriaovs Xoiarog 
&SOV Tios J^coTTiQ, Jesus Christ, the Son oJ\ God, our Saviour. 
We frequently find, not only in Freemasonry but else- 
where, the addition of the Greek letters A and i2 subjoined 
to all and each of the above-mentioned monograms, to 

SI Icon, de Dieu, p. 212. 

^ Triall of Private Devotions, A. d. 1625. 

^ " Amongst the Mosaics in the nave of St. Maria Maggiore at 
Rome, we find a design of the Israelites stoning Moses and Aaron in 
their flight to the Tabernacle, on the morning after the punishment of 
Korah, Dathan, and Abii'am, a hand from heaven suiTOunds them 
Virith a vesica piscis, from which the stones, arrested, fall innocuously 
to the ground ,• while a third figure (hke the fourth in the fiery fur- 
nace of the three children) appears beside them, witliin the vesica 
piscis, intended doubtless for our Saviour." (Lord Lindsay, ut supra, 
p. 101.) 


denote the eternity of Christ as Jehovah. Thus Du- 
cange — 

Circulus hie summi comprendit nomina regis, 
Quem sine principio et sine fine vides. 

Principium cum fine simul tibi donat A cum Si ; 
X et P Christi nomina sancta teneut/''' 

We will now examine how far this doctrine is applica- 
ble to Royal Arch Masonry. It appears from evidence 
which is incontrovertible, that this and holy Being 
was known under the same name, or one which very 
nearly resembled it, in almost every nation under tlie 
canopy of heaven, however they might have departed 
from the true faith and manner of worship. By one he 
was called Ivah, or Evah ; by another, Javoh ; by others, 
Jevah, Jove, Jupiter, &c. Macrobius, in his Saturnalia 
(1. i., 18), says, that it was an admitted axiom amongst 
the heathen, that the triliteral Jah, or rather lAi}, was 
the sacred name of the Supreme God. And the Clarian 
oracle, which was of unknown antiquity, being asked 
which of the deities was named lAii, answered in these 
memorable words : — 

" The initiated are bound to conceal the mysterious 
secrets. Learn thou, that lAii, is the Great God Supreme, 
who ruleth over all." 

Now it so happens, that in the gems of the early 
Christians we find these very letters, IAi2, which are an 
abbreviation of the name of Jehovah, used as a mono- 
gram to express the name of the Saviour of mankind, 
who was thus represented as existing before time was, 
and shall exist when time shall be no more. It was 
first adopted by the eastern church, and signified 

^ Gloss., V. 10, apud lo. Anton. Caetill. de antiquitate Basil. 


Itjaovs, Alipa i2,ueya, Jesus, Alpha Omega, or in other words, 
Jesus, the first and the last.'^^ And this is consonant 
with the decision of Ducange, who says that the letters 
A and ii " designantes Christi divinitatem et humanita- 
tem," like the intersecting triangles of the English 
Royal Arch. 

But this appropriation of -^1 and ii to Jesus Christ does 
not rest on the opinions of men, but it is frequently and 
plainly prochiimed in the Word of God. Jehovah applies 
it to himself in these remarkable words ; — " Thus saith 
Jehovah, the King of Israel, his Redeemer, the Lord of 
Hosts, I am the Jirst, and I am the last, and besides me 
there is no other God."^'' But Jesus Christ claims these 
titles — " Behold I come quickly, to give to every man 
according as his work shall be. I am Alpha and Omega, 
the beginning and the end, the first and the last.'"''''' And 
again, in another place — " I am A and -0, the beginning 
and the ending, which is, and was, and is to come, the 
Almighty."^^ And he glories in the title, which his be- 
loved disciple attributes to him saying — " These things 
saith the First and the Last, that was dead and is alive. "^^ 
On this account it was that he commenced his Gospel 
with that memorable passage which occupies such a 
prominent situation on the old Royal Arch Tracing- 
boards — "Li the beginning was the Word," that is, ^ 
and Q\ and more significantly expressed in the central 
symbol of the sacred name. But his eternity is more 
plainly avouched by St. Paul. The royal prophet David 
had said — " They all shall wax old, as doth a garment, 
and as a vesture shalt thou change them, and they shall 
be changed ; but Thou art the same, and thy years shall 
not fail."^" These very words are applied by the apostle 
to Jesus Christ f" and again,''^ he says — " Jesus Christ is 
the same yesterday, to-day, and for ever ;" which was an 
appropriation of tlie words of Jehovah by the prophet — 
" I am Jehovah, I change not."^^ 

The Royal Arch word, to have been perfectly in keep- 
ing with the degree, and with the general construction 
of Masonry, should have been a triad not only of sylla- 

5* Rev. xxii., 13. ^Isaiah xUv., 6. ^7 jjev. xxii., 12, 13. 

«8Rev. i., 8. »3Rev. ii., 8. ^o Psalm cii., 27 

« Heb. xi., 11, 12. «Heb. siii., 8. •» Mai. ui., 6. 


bles but also of letters. Our transatlantic Brethren 
have seen this in its true light ; but they have corrected 
the error unlearnedly. It ought to have been, if the prin- 
ciple of its construction be allovt^ed, to be orthodox. 

I Syriac I Chaldee I Hindoo | 

And to have made it intelligible to a mere English 
scholar, which description v^iil apply to a great majority 
of Royal Arch Masons, it should be translated to them 
thus — 

I English I Englisli I English I 

I cannot be more explicit for obvious reasons ; but every 
Companion of the Order will be at no loss to understand 
my meaning. 

Having thus, at some length, explained the tendency 
and various significations of that magnificent and sublime 
symbol which occupies the centre of the Floor-cloth, as 
it was understood by our Brethren of the last century — 
the Deity surrounded by infinite universal space ; his 
eternity being declared by the awful £N APXH HN o 
AOroi:, which forms the crowning glory of the design — 
"The light shining in darkness, and the darkness com- 
prehending it not ;" I proceed to an examination of the 
subordinate figures, which constitute so many symbols, 
or types, illustrative of the doctrine which has already 
been enunciated, the chief of which had been abstracted 
from the Third Degree. 

The diagrams underneath the centre arch are some- 
what difficult of solution at this distance of time, when 
every clue is lost by which their true design might be 
explained. They consist of two single triads of circles, 
and a figure composed of three sides of a square, com- 
bining seven circles. The most obvious interpretation 
appears to be, that the angular triad refers either to the 
three original Grand Lodges on mounts Sinai and Horeb, 
each governed by as many Grand Masters; or to the 
three Principals of the Chapter, symbolized by the three 
key-stones, to show that as a knowledge of certain mys- 
terious secrets was attained by drawing them forth, so 
by passing through these offices a kxiQwledge of the 


arcana of Royal Arch Masonry may be successfully ac- 
complished. Now tliese three Principals are described 
in the original rules of the Degree (a. d. 17S2) thus: — 
" The three Principals in Chapter assembled are to be 
considered conjunctly, as the Master, and each several 
ly as A Master." Hence, in their aggregate capacity 
they represent o:srE person only, in whom is united the 
different attributes of king, priest, and prophet. For as 
there is a trinity of persons in the godhead, so there was 
a trinity of offices combined in the second person when 
incarnate, which is clearly represented in the diagram. 
Now it will be observed that these Principals are three 
only in name, not in office. They are not 1 Z, 2 H, 3 J, 

The Master. 

! I I 

H Z J 

They are, therefore, typical of Jehovah-Christ, in whom 
these offices are permanently united in their utmost per- 
fection, and in him alone. This arrangement is one of 
the great beauties of the Degree. 

It is possible that the angular triad might also bear a 
reference to the three great lights, which were at that 
period interpreted to symbolize " the light of the Gospel, 
and the sublime mystery of the trinity." The linear 
triad bore a reference to the sojourners, who represented 
the three stones on which prayers and thanksgivings 
were offered on the discovery of the lost v^^ord ; thereby 
affording an example, that it is our duty in every im- 
portant undertaking, to offer up our prayers and thanks- 
givings to the God of our salvation. While the quad- 
rangular diagram reminds us of the seven pair of pillars 
which supported King Solomon's private avenue, the 
seven steps in advancing, and the seven seals; for in 
those days the OB was sealed seven times. 

The figures, however, being read from right to left, 
may have a reference to the three Degrees of Craft Ma- 
sonry, the three divisions of Operative, and the seven 
divisions of Speculative Masonry; the latter of which, 
in those times, was identified with the Royal Arch Degree, 


and referred to the seven liberal sciences ; and both were 
thus explained in the lectures of the day : — 

"Freemasonry is to be considered as divided into two 
parts, the Operative and the Speculative ; and these are 
again subdivided, the Operative (that is Craft Masonry) 
into three distinct branches, the manual, the instrumen- 
tal, and the scientific. The manual consists of such 
parts of business as are performed by hand labour alone, 
or by the help of some simple instruments, the uses 
whereof are not to be learnt by any problems or rules of 
irt, but by labour and practice only; and this is more 
peculiarly applicable to our Brethren of the First De- 
gree, called Entered Apprentices. 

" The instrumental consists in the use and application 
of various tools and implements, such as the common 
gage, the square, the plumb-line, the level, and others 
that may be called mathematical, invented to find the 
size or magnitude of the several parts or materials 
whereof our buildings are composed, to prove when they 
are wrought into due form and proportion, and when so 
wrought, to fix them in their proper ]3laces and positions; 
and likewise to take the dimensions of all bodies, whether 
plain or solid, and to adjust and settle the proportions of 
space and extent. To this part also belongs the use of 
various other instruments or machines, such as the lever, 
the wheel and axle, the wedge, the screw, the pulley, 
&c., which may be called mechanic, being used to for- 
ward and expedite our business, to alleviate our toils, 
and enable us to perform that by a single hand which 
could not be done without many, and in some cases not 
at all ; and those more properly belong to our Brethren 
of the Second Degree, styled Fellowcrafts. 

" The scientific consists in the knowledge of several of 
the arts and sciences, so far as to enable us to discern the 
reason for the operations of those before-mentioned in- 
struments, tools, and machines, and to calculate the force 
and momentum of the different mechanical powers; and 
also to cle^r up and arrange our ideas in such a manner, 
as to be able to delineate them so clearly on our Tracing- 
board, that, by the help of a proper scale, our Brethren 
of the Second Degree may take them off and complete 
our design, and, if intended for that purpose, erect a 
structure, which, when finished, shall contain the greatest 


possible degree of strength, elegance, and convenience, 
that the quantity of materials and space allowed will 
admit of; and this is the part of, or applicable to, our 
Brethren of the highest Degree of the Craft of Master 

"To each of these Degrees belong certain signs, tokens, 
and watch-words, well known amongst the Brethren, 
and also a variety of instructive maxims and apothegms, 
the former intended to detect impostors, and exclude the 
unworthy from their Lodges ; and the latter to strengthen 
the memory, to correct the judgment, and habituate the 
mind, by a due course of reasoning, to trace up causes 
from effects, and thereby explode the dogmata of every 
false hypothesis; and thus we are handed on Irom in- 
fancy to childhood, from childhood to youth, from youth 
to manhood ; and by the instructions received in passing 
through the several probationary Degrees of the Craft, 
are prepared for our own most sublime one, namely, 
Speculative Masonry, or the Royal Arch, intended for the 
cultivation of every art and science that the human mind, 
m this sublunary state, is capable of; and particularly 
the seven liberal sciences, which are so many branches 
of that universal science called Freemasonry;" which 
may account for the seven circles in the quadrangular 
figure before us. 

The remaining emblems mostly belong to the Third 
Degree, although, for a brief period, they were incorpo- 
rated into the Royal Arch, as apposite illustrations of the 
lucid emblem in the centre of the Tracing-board. They 
were appendages equally to the Tabernacle of Moses, 
and the Temple of Solomon; but were not all restored 
after it had been rebuilt by Zerubbabel. We have here 
the golden candlestick, the table of shew-bread, the 
censer or altar of incense, the pot of manna, and Aaron's 
rod. These were explained in the following manner: — 

The candlestick was manufactured by Bezaleel and 
Aholiab, of beaten gold. It had an upright shaft, which 
stood on a broad foundation, that its support might be 
firm and immoveable, without danger of being over- 
thrown during the process of trimming and cleaning its 
lamps, which were seven in number (although nine are 
represented in the figure), one in the centre, and three 
on each side, on so many branches that were not equal 


in length, the outer branches being elongated, that the 
lights might be all of the same height. The body of the 
shaft had four bowls, and as many knops and flowers, 
from which the branches sprang; each branch containing 
the same number of bowls, knops, and flowers. Some 
think that the seven branches symbolized the seven 
planets, the seven days of the week, and the seven ages 
of man ; but, in truth, the Christian church is the can- 
dlestick, and the light is Christ.''-' The seven lights are 
emblems of the gifts of the Spirit ; the knops and flowers, 
the graces and ornaments of a Christian life. As the 
candlestick gave light to the Tabernacle, so we must 
remain in darkness unless Chris C shall enlighten his 
church. Simeon, therefore, pronounced it to be "a 
light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory^^ of Is- 

On the opposite side of the sacred symbol we find the 
table of shewbread. Moses was commanded to construct 
this table of shittim wood, because it was intended to be 
durable, and to last as long as the Jewish dispensation 
should continue. This wood was the acacia, which, 
according to Kitto," was exclusively employed in the 
construction of the Tabernacle. It is well agreed by 
writers on the natural history of the Bible, that the 
shittim wood was afforded by a species of acacia ; but 
the particular species has been less determinately men- 
tioned. But now that the labours of the French com- 
mission, and of different recent travellers, have made us 
acquainted with the botany of Arabia Petra3a, we have 
little difficulty in concluding that the required species is 
found in either the acacia giimmifera, or in the acacia sepal, 
or rather in both. They both grow abundantly in the 
valleys of that region where the Israelites wandered for 
forty years, and both supply products which must have 
rendered them of much value to the Israelites. The 
crown, or rim, of this table was particularly described in 

- 64 Rev. i., 20. 

^ Nimbus, refening to tlie gloiy which played round the head of 
Moses when he came down from the mount, and thus preserving a 
common phraseology, characteristic of the rays of light within the 
interlacing triangles of our Tracing-board, and overshadowing the 
altar of incense. 

86 Luke ii., 32. ^ Palestine, eoli. 


the lectures of the day as being common to it, as well as 
the Ark of the covenant, and the altar of incense. It 
consisted of an ornamented border of gold, as is seen in 
the lithograph, which was set round the table to prevent 
anything from falling from it, and so becoming polluted. 
On this table were placed the twelve loaves of un- 
leavened bread, called the presence bread, because it 
was perpetually before the face of Jehovah ; a custom 
which was imitated amongst the heathen, who had in 
their temples a similar table, on which meat and drink 
were placed in honour of the gods, as we find in the fa- 
miliar instance of Bel and the dragon, recorded in the 
Apocrypha of our Bibles. The twelve loaves of shew- 
bread in the Tabernacle were baked in moulds by the 
priests ; and some say they were marked with the names 
of the twelve tribes of Israel ; but there is no authority 
for this conjecture in the Sacred Writings. They were 
consecrated with incense, and being placed on vessels of 
gold, were renewed every sabbath-day. Josephus affirms, 
that a cup of incense was placed on each stack of bread, 
as is represented in the figure before us. 

The mystical and symbolical meaning of this utensil 
is thus explained : some understand by it the Holy 
Scriptures, and interpret the four rings by which it was 
earned, when removed from one place to another, the 
four evangelists, by whom the Gospel of Christ is carried, 
as it were, from nation to nation, till it becomes uni- 
versal ; while others compare the twelve loaves to the 
twelve months ; and others think the table a symbol of 
the earth, and the loaves to the fruits thereof. But 
these interpretations are too fanciful. The table was a 
symbol of the family of Christ-Jehovah, and the loaves 
of the true bread of life which that great Being has fur- 
nished to his faithful followers. By the incense upon 
the bread, we are to understand that the preaching of 
the word ought to be consecrated by prayer and thanks- 
giving, that we may be divinely incited to the practice 
of moral and social virtue. 

We now come to the consideration of the pot of 

manna, and the rod of Aaron that budded. It is well 

known that the manna was given by Jehovah as food 

for his people in the barren desert, which was called by 



David'^^ " the bread of angels," as some think, because 
it was a type of Christ, who was the true bread of life 
both to angels and to men. The manna was a white, 
transparent globule, of the size of a coriander seed, and 
tasted like wafers made with honey, and flavoured with 
olive oil.**** A vessel of this pure substance was directed 
to be laid up before the testimony, as a pei-petual 
memento of the miraculous sustenance of so great a body 
of people for forty years in a sterile wilderness; and it 
will be remembered that, when they came out of Egypt,^ 
they numbered three millions of souls. The form of 
this vessel has been represented like an urn, with 
a lid or cover; and thus it is depicted on Samaritan 

The manna is denominated by St. PauP" "spiritual 
meat ;" whence Christians have considered it as a type 
of Christ ; and for these plain reasons, because, as 
Jehovah, whom we have already seen identified with the 
Redeemer of mankind, had compassion on his chosen 
people when they were famishing in a region where no 
food was to be had ; so the same holy Being had com- 
passion on mankind, when they were in a state of 
spiritual destitution, and gave his body and blood as a 
nourishment for their hungry souls. In sending forth 
the manna, Jehovah displayed his tender love towards 
his people — but much more so when he came in human 
form to seek and to save those which were lost. He 
gave them the manna for forty years to teach them 
obedience under the law — and he has given us his Grospel, 
with a promise of everlasting life to those who should 
obey its precepts and observe its laws. The coincidences 
between the manna and Jesus Christ are too numerous 
to be overlooked, and too important to be despised. He 
himself drew the first parallel when he said to the Jews 
— " I am the bread of life. Your fathers did eat manna 
in the wilderness, and are dead. This is the bread which 
Cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof 
and not die. I am the living bread which came down 
from heaven. If anv man eat of this bread, he shall live 

• Psalm Ixxviii., 9. *• Numb, xxiii., 21. 

'• 1 Cor. X., 3. 


for ever ; and the bread that I will give is my flesh, 
which I will give for the life of the world."^' 

Of the properties and qualities of the manna, the 
following symbolical coincidences were noticed. The 
manna was small, but of great virtue ; and Christ, 
though appearing of low degree, possessed unlimited 
power. The manna was white, the emblem of purity ; 
and Christ was accordingly pure and spotless. To pre- 
pare the manna for use, it had to be beaten and bruised 
in a mortar — Christ was, in like manner, beaten and 
bruised for our iniquities. The manna came from heaven 
— -so did Christ. It was sweet and pleasant to the palate 
— Christ is sweet and pleasant to vhe soul. It fell from 
on high like dew, as Christ imparts his grace and spirit. 
The manna was supplied till the Israelites entered the 
promised land ; and Christ will supply his church till 
the heavenly Canaan shall be opened to all true believers. 

The rod of Aaron that budded, and put forth blossoms, 
and yielded ripe almonds, as a miraculous attestation of 
his authority, was also ordered to be preserved as a visible 
testimony of the fact ; and the Jews are of opinion that 
it retained its leaves and fruit to the last, which is, 
indeed, extremely probable, else the evidence of the 
miracle would be defective ; and hence it is displayed 
in a florescent state on our Tracing-board. These two 
symbols of memorable events in the Jewish history were 
preserved in the Most Holy Place, beside the Ark of 
the Covenant, and not m it, as some have been led to 
imagine from the words of St. Paul, Heb. ix., 4. They 
were, however, within the Oracle, and, therefore, have 
been characteristically placed, in the drawing before us, 
beneath the arch where the holy Shekinah is symbolized 
by the sun, that darts its rays obliquely through the 
arch, because, according to a masonic tradition, "the 

height of the sun at Jerusalem on the day was 

58°> which formed an angle with the horizon, and caused 

." " Now," says Dr. Kellet,'^ " it is not more 

odd than true quod Sol in nube, Dem in Came ; God in 
the flesh is like the sunne in a cloud. When Christ was 
first brought into the temple, the prophetical spirit came 
upon Simeon ; and of extraordinary thanksgiving upon 

'» John vi., 48-51. « TricoKi. Ohri^, p. 114. 


Anna. Was the presence of God in a cloud glorious in 
the first temple? Much more was the presence of 
Jehovah in Christ, of Christ in a cloud, superabundantly- 
glorious. A cloud overshadowed them ; and a voice out 
of the cloud said, this is my beloved Son. Againe, was 
the presence of God in Julgore, in brightnesse, such a 
great priviledge of the first temple? Certainly, the pres- 
ence of Jehovah in Christ, who was the brightnesse of 
his glory and the expresse image of his person, upholding 
all things by the Word of his power, was much more 
illustrious and glorious; and the presence of Christ in 
the bright cloud, when his face did shine as the sun, 
and his raiment was white as the light, was much more 

The censer of incense which occupies tlie upper right 
hand corner of the lithograph, surmounted by a rainbow, 
or halo of light, is a representation of the altar of incense, 
which was made of the acacia covered with beaten gold. 
In form it was a double cube, and had a crown or rim 
like the table of shew-bread, running round its upper 
surface. It was of small dimensions, being only 1\ feet 
square, and three feet high, with elevations at each cor- 
ner called horns. The figure in our drawing represents 
merely the censer that was placed upon the altar, in 
which the incense was actually burned, in allusion to 
the words of St. Paul, Heb. ix,, 4; although we have no 
warrant in the Jewish writings that such a vessel was 
used, for the authority is exclusively Christian. 

This altar or censer was placed close to the veil which 
separated the holy from the most holy place, that the 
incense might penetrate into the latter; and for this 
reason, perhaps, it vfas that St. Paul attributes it to the 
innermost room. It was an emblem or type of Christ, 
through whom we offer the incense of our prayers. The 
acacia and gold of which the altar was composed, referred 
to his human and divine nature ; the crown to his regal 
dignity; and the horns to his power. As no incense 
could be offered but upon this altar, so no prayers will 
be accepted but those that are offered through Christ. 
The incense was offered every morning and evening, and 
our prayers ought to ascend to the throne of grace at 
the same periods. The halo or rainbow which appears 
to overshadow the censer, refers to a passage in the Book 


of Revelation, which says — "And another angel came 
and stood at the altar having a golden censer ; and there 
was given unto him much incense, that he should offer 
it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar 
which was before the throne. And the smoke of the incense 
which came with the prayers of the saints ascended u]j 
before God out of the angel's hand.'"^ 

I need not tell you, my dear sir, at the conclusion of 
this letter, that my advocacy of Freemasonry is perfectly 
disinterested and sincere, for an intimate connection of 
more than twelve years' continuance, during which our 
coiTespondence on the subject has been incessant and 
uninterrupted, will prevent any doubt from lingering in 
your mind of my entire devotedness to the great and 
holy cause. My head has become grey during the pro- 
cess ; but increasing years and experience have served to 
confirm the predilections of my early life, and to convince 
me that Masonry is the handmaiden of religion ; and that, 
while the preliminary degrees contain a most beautiful 
system of Christian morality, the Royal Arch is impreg- 
nated with the principal types and doctrines of our most 
holy faith. This is the firm and unshaken belief of the 
sexagenarian Mason who has great pleasure in subscribing 

My dear Sir, 

Your most obedient and 

Faithful friend and Brother, 

Scoptoick Vicarage, 1st May, 1847. 

" Rev. viii., 3, 4. 











Stereotyped i 

HOLMirN 4 GRAY, 1 

Printed and Bound by 




Permit me, Sir, to dedicate this Treatise on The Secret Disci- 
pline OF THE Church to you, who have been a sufferer, and an 
efficient soldier, in two wars — a distinguished statesman in the halls 
of legislation — a presiding judge in the highest courts of justice in 
our State — a chief magistrate prompt in supporting the majesty of 
the laws — a president of that venerable band of patriots the Cincin- 
nati; to you, who have shared the labours, been master of the 
mysteries, and dispensed the charities of Masonry ; to you, who 
have breasted the storm of anti-masonic excitement, trusting to the 
purity of your principles, and to that great Being who in the end 
sustains the righteous, and punishes the wicked ; to you, whom the 
younger men of your country regard as an example of firmness, 
moderation, and repubhcan simphcity, who, in sustaining all these 
high callings, have never stained one of them with the pride of place, 
or insolence of office. 

It is my belief. Sir, that as a scholar, you will be gratified by a 
perusal of this argument ; that as a Christian, you wiU be delighted 
to find it so clearly proved that the followers of our Saviour and the 
Christian Fathers, were of our Order ; and that the mysteries were 
known to all those who propagated the Gospel in all lands, as sent 
by their divine Master. Permit me also to add a prayer, that your 
life may long be preserved, in order that you may rejoice in new 
illustrations and fresh arguments in support of the great political, 
moral, and religious creeds, which you have from youth adopted and 

With respect and veneration. 



It is now more than five years since I published a 
small volume, called the Genius of Masonry : that 
work was written to prove, among other things, that 
Masonry had its origin in a remote antiquity, if some of 
its features bore a modern impress. In that work, I 
carefully avoided every thing of a personal nature, for 
fear of offending some conscientious anti-masons, for 
some such I believed did exist. For political anti- 
masonry I had no tenderness; I thought then, and be- 
lieve now, that many seized this excitement to bring 
themselves into notice ; and it would be vain, indeed, to 
attempt to convince those who were never deceived : 
the excitement was well enough for their purpose. To 
any attacks upon my work I never made any reply, for 
I believed that the periodicals established to put down 
Masonry, if not opposed, would soon fall to the ground, 
and the event has proved the truth of these predictions. 
The language they held was too intemperate to be the 
language of the wise and just, and they resorted to 
assumption, fiction, and falsehood, to support their 
opinions. Some of their periodicals lingered for a season, 
and then expired without making any void in society, 
and others went out as a flash. A few of them are now 
in being, but hold no rank as periodicals ; no one envies 
their editors all the glory they may acquire, nor the 
proprietors the amount of their profits. The excitement 
would have long since passed away, if some few men of 
high standing, and of extensive acquirements, had not 

come to the aid of anti-masonry. It is difficult to 
account for the part they have taken ; but, as they have 
a right to do as they please, we w^ill leave them to take 
a deeper view of the subject than they have done, and 
there can be no doubt of their returning to reason after 
wandering awhile in their errors. 

From a state of quietude, I cannot say neutrality, I 
probably should never have been roused, having dis- 
missed the subject from my mind, had not a friend put 
into my hands, a few weeks ago, a treatise upon The 
Secret Discijjline of the Church. I read the manuscript 
with surprise and delight; it confirmed my previous 
impressions of the antiquity of the Order, and opened a 
new view of the science, as connected directly with the 
Christian religion. Others, more capable than myself, 
and who could spare more time in the investigation of 
the subject than I could, declared that the arguments in 
this treatise were learned, fliir, and satisfactory. I there- 
fore lost no time in giving it to the public. The writer 
is alone known to me, but I need only to ask the reader 
to examine the following pages to secure his approbation 
of the work, and to believe me when I assert that he is 
a scholar and a Christian, and that he has done much for 
religion and letters. It may be asked, why does he not 
come out with his name to the work ? The answer is, 
that he is on the confines of another world, and does not 
wish to be disturbed by controversy, but at the same 
time thinks it his duty to present these views of the 
subject of Masonry to the thinking part of the commu- 
nity, and particularly to those who have entertained 
serious doubts of its antiquity. 

In this work, the Secret Discipline of the Church is 
proved from the same authority by which the Gospels 
are established, and, for aught we see, as clearly; and 
this Secret Discipline was and is Masonry. 

From the fanatic who believes that all Masons are 

answerable for the deeds of every individual of the Order, 
there can be nothing said that can do him any good ; his 
mind is full of prejudice, his heart of persecution; let 
him go on, he v^ill soon become quiet by the force of 
reason, M^hich is always acthig upon the public min 
even while the excitement is raging, as the vital princi 
pies of a good constitution are struggling in the parox- 
ysms of a fever to recover their natural influence and 
power. Time alone can cure the errors of the mind, as 
well as the evils of the body. 

The political anti-mason will come right, when the 
cry against Masonry will do him no good at the polls. 

To those who have doubts, I ask them to read this 
small volume, and form their own opinions upon these 
questions: Is the Order a new one? If not, what did 
the early Christians think of it ? These being answered, 
I shall leave the subject, not fearing for the Craft. 

Most respectfully and sincerely. 

Your obedient servant, 




When perusing ancient Ecclesiastical History, such 
references to the Secret Society, which was formed 
among the early Christians, as were elucidatory of what 
had been transmitted by tradition respecting the Masonic 
Fraternity, were noted. I then selected one or two 
passages from each of the Christian Fathers, most dis- 
tinguished for labours in building up churches ; and 
found that the proof of the oral history, which at first 
glimmered faintly as it lay dispersed, grew brighter as 
the sparks were brought nearer together. I traced the 
lines of inference, and perceived that they met at last in 
one central truth; and hope that, by their reflection 
from these pages, new light will be shed to increase the 
splendours of an association, which, like the sun, its 
emblem, may be eclipsed by some dark body interposing, 
but cannot be extinguished. 

In laying these pages before the public, I make it 
known, that to newspaper criticisms and cavils I shall 
not condescend to reply. The comments of anonymous 
sciolists I shall wholly disregard. Even against such 
antagonists as prefix their name to the attack, as a 
tavern-keeper does his to the sign of a bear or a lion 
"before his door, I shall take no pains to defend myself. 
as thoroughly acquainted with the w^ritings of the Chris- 
tian Fathers, will, from the source of information which 
they supply, or from others more sacred, pure, and 
authentic, bring statements, declarations, and testimony, 
wholly different from what I have drawn, I shall cer- 
tainly pay him that respect and deference to which he 

will be entitled; and then, too, those who, by being 
more learned than either of us, are alone cajjaUe of de- 
ciding, can inform the public how the judgment is to be 

In the mean time, let it be clearly understood, that 

eference is here principally had to ancient free and 
ACCEPTED Masonry, as taught in the three degrees of 
Entered Appreyitice, Fellow Craft, and Master Mason. 





There is no one, at all acquainted with Freemasonry, 
but must have been struck with the constant reference 
which it has to the Temple built by Solomon, accompa- 
nied with allusions to the Gospel History ; though the 
application of this reference, and the pertinency of these 
allusions by those who, to show the antiquity or the 
sacredness of the Institution, have written or declaimed 
on the subject, has often served to increase, rather than 
to remove, the incredulity of the uninitiated. 

To explain what has been very imperfectly understood 
in this respect, and reconcile what has seemed to be 
contradictory and inconsistent, is the design of this dis- 

A difficulty, however, is met at the outset, occasioned 
by the want of mitten records relative to the origin and 
primitive history of Freemasonry; the particulars of 
which, having been transmitted only by tradition, have 
sometimes been incorrectly recapitulated, and, at length, 
are become exceedingly obscure ; so that the authorities 
which I am about to cite in corroboration of my state- 
ments, must be collected from incidental intimations 
given in the writings of the fathers, principally within 
five centuries from the introduction of Christianity. 
These, however, when collected and summed up, will 
be found to furnish evidence that this secret society is 
filiated to Christianity; and, of course, that its profes- 
sions are not without foundation. 

In the parting advice which our blessed Lord gave to 

his disciples, was this direction, " Take heed to your- 
selves, for they shall deliver you up to councils, and in 
the synagogues ye shall be beaten, and ye shall be 
brought before rulers and kings for a testimony against 
them."^ Soon afterwards, they realized the troubles of 
which he forewarned them; and " being persecuted unto 
strange cities,"^ were obliged to use great caution, and 
adopt discreet measures, of personal safety, by appointing 
the meetings of the faithful to be holden in private places, 
and under the concealment of darkness.^ 

Commissioned to " go into all the world, and preach 
the gospel to every creature,"'' they went forth, and 
preached in the name of Christ among all nations, be- 
ginning at Jerusalem.^ 

Their first object was to make converts; their next to 
gather churches or societies of believers; and their third, 
to provide places for their assembling. As early as the 
second century, those who were employed in the last 
service, were formed into a distinct association; and, as 
they were to travel into distant regions, found it expe- 
dient to adopt certain means of recognition, should they 
meet with those who were engaged in the same cause, 
but with whom they had not been personally acquainted, 
" that they might strengthen each other's hands in the 
work of the house of God."^ 

Moreover, as their undertaldng excited popular oppo- 

' Mark xiii., 9. " Acts xxvi., 11. 

3 EusEBius, Hist. Eccles., lib. II., c. 23. Just. Martyr, Dial. Try- 
phone, p. 51. seq. 109. 138. 318. Origen, Contra Celsum, lib. I., p. 5. 

" They were forced to hold their assemblies in the night, to avoid 
their persecutors ; which Celsus himself owns, though otherwise 
prone enough to load them with hard names and odious reflections," 
— Bingham, History of the Christian Church, book I., chap. II., sec. 11. 
Conf. Plin., 1. X., epist. 97. 

* Mark xvi., 15. ^ Luke xxiv., 47. 

s " Sic omnes probant unitatem, dum est illis communicatio pacis, et 
appellatio fraternitatis. et contesseratio hospitalitatis ; quae jura non alia 
ratio regit quam ejusdem sacramenti una traditio." — Tertullian, De 
PrcBscrip., cap. 20. See also Ambrose, lib. II., ojffic., cap. 21, et lib. iii,, 
cap. 8. Chrysostom, Condone de Lazaro. Augustine's Serm., 70. 
See also Appendix, Note A. 

" Si peregrinus accesserit, signum est apud ipsos, in extendo manum, 
ad salutationem videlicet, subter palmam contractionem quandam 
titilationis per hoc se ; indicare ostendentes, quod ejusdem religionis 
sit qui accessit. Hinc igitur mutua cognitione accepta, statim ad epu- 
lationem convertuntur." 


sition, they deemed it prudent to hold their meetings for 
devising measures of co-operation in places where they 
should neither be interrupted nor overheard.' And be- 
cause false brethren might unawares be introduced, 
coming in privily to spy out their liberty, that they 
might bring them into bondage by an arrest from the 
magistrate,^ the faithful guarded against their intrusion, 
having determined not to give them place by condescen- 
sion during the hour devoted to consultation. Lest, 
after all their precaution, covins and eaves-droppera 
might be near,^ still more effectually to cover the design 
of their fellowship from those who might divulge ita 
object to their enemies, or indiscreetly talk, about it to 
such as were not yet entirely attached to the cause, they 
avoided direct reference to their undertaking, and con- 
versed together figuratively, and by the use of symbols. 
Thus, as their object was to build in every land a house 
FOR RELIGIOUS WORSHIP, in rcspect to its spiritual edifi- 
cation " upon the foundation of the apostles and pro- 
phets, Jesus Christ being the chief corner stone," and, 
as to its material fabric and use, an edifice or temple, for 
the assemblies of the saints, they adopted allusions to the 
building of the Temple of Solomon. The blessed Jesus, 
who, after the death of Joseph, had passed under the 
designation of " the widoto's son,'''' they personified by 
Hiram Abiff ;^" from the traditionary account of whose 
fate, they borrowed allusions to that of their master.^^ 
Thus, the outrage of the fellow-craftsmen to obtain ad- 
vancement to which they were not entitled, they sym- 
bolized with the treacherous Judas; and they received 
from those to whom they imparted a knowledge of these 
typical references, and of the purpose for w^hich they 
were adopted, and the objects to which they applied, a 
solemn declaration, that, rather than betray their Lord, or 
abandon his cause, they would suffer a similar fate to that of 
the traitor, — who " falling head-long, after his strangula- 

^ Justin Martyr. ApoL, 1. c. 85. seq. Tertullian, Apol., c. 39 ; 
de Corona Milit., c. 3. 

8 Galat. ii., 4. 

9 Covin — one who enters into covin ; a deceitful agreement between 
two or more persons to the prejudice of others. Eaves-droppers, 
those who privily listen at the eaves, or doors of a house. 

w 1 Kings vii., 13, 14. " See Appendix, Note B. 

tion, burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels 
gushed out." [Acts i., IS.p^ 

The ineffable and mysterious name,^^ which the high 
priest could utter only in a whisper, as his password 
through the veil into the sanctum sanctorum,'^^ and which 
the Jews never dared to pronounce, but substituted for it 
■31X Adonai, w^as said to be lost at the death of our 
Saviour, when "the veil of the temple was rent in 
twain;" but recovered in the exclamation of Thomas on 
beholding the raised body of his master, and thencefor- 
ward adopted as the hailing word of the Fraternity. 

The apostacy of Judas is quoted in the ritual of Free- 
masonry, where, to the question, "Why should eleven 
make a lodge ?" it is answered, " Because there were 
but eleven apostles when Judas betrayed Christ." 

By a singular lapsus linguce, the moderns have sub- 
stituted Tubal Cain in the third degree for TTMBOXEIN, 
to he entombed. This, in the ancient Catechesis Arcani, was 
the pass-word, from the symbolical representation of the 
state of death, to the restored and undying existence. 
Happy those, w^ho, having gone through its preparatory 
form, are able to say, "We know that we have passed 
from death to life, because we love the brethren. "^^ Still 
happier those, who, "planted together in the likeness 
of the death of Christ, shall be raised also in the like- 
ness of his resurrection."^^ 

As those who went forth " to teach and to preach," 
divided their converts into three classes, the Catechu- 
mens, CoMPETENTS, and Believers,^'' so they whose 
destination was " to build churches," formed three 

12 See Appendix, Note C. 

** " the incommunicable name." — Wisdom xiv., 21. 

* The priests within bid him " enter in the name of the Lord." 
From the Talmud it appears that the Jews were taught that Moses, 
by virtue of the word riini Jehovah, engraved on his rod, performed 
all the prodigies related of him ; and the modern Jews say that Jesus 
CHRiSTt)y the same virtue wrought all his miracles; having, while in 
the Temple, acquired a knowledge of the ineffable name ; and they 
flatter themselves that the Messiah will teach them this mighty secret. 
[See Oalmet's Dictionary, under the name Jehovah.] The tetra- 
grammaton is called by Josephus, za cs^a y^a/ufiara. ro ^^ihtov ovofia 
@E8 : and Caligula, in Philo, swears to him by the God who was to 
them ay.aravo/uaaTO. 

1* 1 John iii., 14. ^^ Rom. vi., 5. 

" See Appendix, Note D. 

grades, or degrees, — Kad-a^oi, PURI, those who entered 
by divesting themselves of all impurities, and every- 
thing offensive ; Mmiuevoi, INITIATI, initiated ; and 
TeUiot and TexEXeicofievoi (past-masters) Perfecti, those 
who were raised to the sublime degree.^^ These terms, 
or appellations, became a little varied, as the members 
of the Order, in process of time, assumed the distinctive 
character of actual tmrl{men. 

The place which they procured and fitted up for 
assembling was, at first, an lipper chamber, Ttce^coov}^ Of 
this many eminent writers have largely treated, and, 
particularly, a good account is given in a dissertation of 
the learned Dr. Lee, published in his Posthumous Works, 
vol. i. p. 261. Whether the word "Lodge" originated 
in the circumstance that the meetings were held in a 
lodging chamber, I pretend not to say ; but the fact that 
meetings of the Masonic Fraternity have ever been held 
in such places, is of some consequence, as collateral con- 
firmation of the statements which I have been making. 

The being watched with jealousy, rendered such re- 
tired apartments peculiarly necessary to the early Chris- 
tians. " Persecution was always attended with poverty, 
paucity of believers, and unsettled hopes ; so that either 
they needed not stately and sumptuous buildings, or 
they were not able to erect them ; or at least they had 
no invitation and encouragement to do it, whilst they 
were daily under apprehensions of seeing them plundered 
or demolished almost as soon as they had erected them."2o 
They were even subject to the necessity of having their 
meetings under arches, and the Royal Arch of Titus at 
Rome, decorated with representations of the spoils of 
the temple at Jerusalem, was a selected place. They 
congregated, also, in subterranean vaults, and even in 
tombs ; as is evident both from the Canons of the Coun- 
cil of Eliberis, which was held in the heat of the Diocle- 
sian persecution, and often mentions their assembling in 
such places f^ as also from the Edicts of the persecuting 

^* See Appendix, Note E. 

1^ " Conclave majoribus Christianorum eouventibus sacris destina- 
tum." — SCHLEUSNER, in verbum TTtsQoiov. 

'^ Bingham, Antiq. of the Christian CJiurch, book vii. chap. ii. 
sec. 2. 

*^ Concil. Eliber. c, 34. item Canon. 35. " Placuit prohiberi ne in 
coemitario pervigilent." 

Emperors, forbidding Christians to hold assemblies in 
the cemeteries.^^ 

During the reign of those Emperors who distinguished 
themselves by their moderation, the Christians ventured, 
to quit their vaults and catacombs, and erected some 
buildings vt^iich were set apart for the public worship 
of God; but as they were in perpetual fear of persecu- 
tion, even when they did not suffer it, as the Emperors 
were idolaters, they did not dare to give their churches 
an air of grandeur, lest the jealousies of the infidels 
should raise a new storm against them. 

" In more peaceable times," Eusebius remarks, lib. 
viii. c. 1. "the number of Christians so grew and multi- 
plied in fifty years, that their ancient churches were not 
large enough to receive them, and therefore they erected 
from the foundations more ample and spacious ones in 
every city." 

More certain and explicit accounts of such edifices 
occur during the third century. In the beginning of it, 
Tertullian gives a description of them as standing on 
high and conspicuous places, towards the east; and 
signifies that there was a distinction of places suited to 
the different orders and classes of those who assembled 
in them. 

About the middle of the third century persecution 
against Christianity ceased; and no fears or menaces of 
any kind deterred men from embracing it. Some distin- 
guished officers of the Emperor's household at Rome 
openly professed it ; and the number of churches there 
was computed to amount to forty .^^ In the provinces, 
the lieutenants and subordinate governors could not but 
be actuated by a similar spirit of toleration and indul- 

22 Onupheius de Ccemiiarles, cap. xi. Comp. Ponth. pass. Cype. 
" Jussum est ut multa conciliabula faciant, neque Coemiteria ingi-gfli- 

KORTHOLT de persecutionihus Ecclesi^ primse. 4to. Kiloui, 1688. 
The Judge Proconsul declared to Cyprian that the Christians must 
not hold their mysteries in the cemeteries, (in Actis, p. 11,) and the 
Prefect of Egypt to Dionysius of Alexandria, (apud Eusebium, 1. ix. 
c. 2.) Tertullian (ad Scapul. c. 3.) See also several inscriptions 
importing this in Boldetti, 1. i. c. 11 ; Mamachi, torn. iii. p. 162: 
and chiefly Bottarius, Rom. Sotter. torn. i. p. 12. See also, But • 
LER's Lives of the Saints, vol. v. p. 148, note. 

^ Opt. de Schis. Don. 1. 2. Greg. Nys. opera, torn. iii. p. 567. 

gence ; and hence either many new sacred fabrics were 
erected, or the old ones enlarged. 

In the time of the Emperor Constantine, orders were 
given for forwarding and completing these works ; so 
that, according to Eusebius, numerous churches were 
built in various regions, and some of a magnificent kind. 
Such were the stately structures erected by the Emperor 
at Jerusalem, Antioch, Tyre, as well as his own imperial 
city, Constantinople ; for, having transferred thither the 
seat of empire, he judged it incumbent on him to give an 
unequalled splendour to it ; at the same time, bestowing 
all suitable elegance on those others of inferior class 
which he raised elsewhere.^'* 

Those who may be disposed to investigate the subject 
of ecclesiastical architecture, and the erection of churches 
in those early times, and the companies or associations 
engaged in their erection, I refer to the treatise of Paulus 
SiLENTiARius, and his learned commentator Du Fresne, 
which may be found at the end of Joh. Cinnamus, among 
the Byzantine Historians, published at Paris, 1670; also 
to EvAGRius, lib. iv. c. 31 ; Procopius, de cedJf. Justin. 
lib. i. c. 1. and Agathias, lib. v. 

I have said that the association formed for the purpose 
of erecting churches, Vk^as obliged, at first, to use a greater 
caution, and adopt measures of co-operation under *a 
greater guard of sec'recy, than was necessary for others 
of the Christian community, because to carry those 
measures into eifect, was at once to combat the prevail- 
ing religious institutions of the Gentiles ; and whatever 
was to be done, must be so concerted as not unnecessarily 
to excite popular prejudice and opposition, or bring into 
exercise the authority of the civil magistrate. Why this 
association should retain its secret meetings, its myste- 
ries, and its symbols, after those prejudices had subsided 
and that opposition had ceased, is not very apparent. I 
have charity to believe that to the members of the Frater- 
nity there appeared tlien sufficient reason for preserving 
the Order under all its ancient rites ; and if I had not 
this charity for them, and for their successors noiv, though 
I understood all the mysteries they possessed, and all the 

2* Wilson. The Ornaments of Churches considered. 4to. Oxford. 
1761, p. 77. 

knowledge of cii'cumstaiices in which they were placed, 
my investigations, and the spirit in which I pursue them, 
would be in vain. I quit, therefore, this digression, and 
return to my principal aim, which was to show that 
i/iere actually existed a class, or order of men., among the early 
Christians, who ivere initiated into its certain mysteries, 
ivhich they were hoimd by a solemn promise not to disclose, nor 
even to converse about, but with such as laid received them under 
the same sanctions. And I trust that it will be apparent, 
that these associates, though bearing, in progressive 
times, difterent names, such as AJEA0OI KAI iTNEProi, 
Brethren and companions in labour ; OIKONOMOI MTITHPION, 
Steivardsofthe Mysteries; UAPAMONAPIOI, Superintendents;^^ 
MT90AATPIOI, Devotees of the Secret ; or APXITEKTimoi, 
Architects: there may be traced the Latomi LiberIj^*^ 
MuRATORi Ltberi, and Free Masons, of after times. 

Whoever is conversant with the works of the fathers, 
must have seen repeated references to the Discipline of 
THE Secret,^ and perceived a difficulty in accounting 
for such a discrimination among professed Christians as 
it occasioned. Of the nature of the mijsteries belonging 
to it, and of the causes which gave rise to an institution 
so exclusive as that in which they were guarded, there 
have been various conjectures, opinions, and dis^Dutes, 
among writers upon Ecclesiastical Antiquities.^^ "But 
these contentions," (says Vidal, in his notes on Mo- 
SHEiM,)^^ " instead of elucidating, have rather tended to 

*5 Bishop Beveridge explains this of the Mansonarii, or adminis- 
trators of the affairs of the Society. Not. in Concil. Chalced. c. 2. 
and JUSTELLUS, of the Steward. Bihlioth. Jur. Canon, t. i. p. 91 ; 
and see Gothofred, Cujacius, Suicerus, and Vossius. 

^^ 'Latornus." Conf. Eph. Constitut. Eccles. Valent. torn, iv 
Concvl. HiSP. p. 186. 

2' "DisciPLiNA Arcani, — hoc est occultatio sententiarum et 
rituum quorundem." — Co?if. Clem. Alexandr. Stromata. 1. i. p. 
275 ; et Origen, L i. c. 27. 1. iii. p. 143. 

2^ Many learned observations on the Secret Discipline have been 
collected by the celebrated Christoph. Matt. Plaffius, in his 
Dissert, poster. Theolog. § 13. p. 149; et seq. in primitiis Tubigen- 
sibus. See also Eman. Schelstrate, in Antiq. Eccles. illustr. et 
Diss. Apologet. 4to. Eom. 16S5. Contra Wilh. Ern. Tenzelii, 
Diss, de Disciplina Arcana in Exercit. selectes, p. 1. uhi et Animad- 
vers. Ejus in Schelstr. Diss. — Albertihus, lib. ii. disp. de 
reticentia mysteriorum. 

** History of the Three First Centuries, vol. ii. p. 161. 


throw additional obscurity over a thing of itself suffi- 
ciently intricate, and that seems as it were to have set 
illustration at defiance." The Roman Catholics have 
explained it as referring to the myst-ery of the mass; and 
other theologians, still more ignorant of its true import, 
and not troubling themselves to trace it out, have pretty 
generally conceded to them this application. " But," 
(says Bingham,)^" " when this discipline was introduced 
into the Christian church, it was done for different rea- 
sons than those which the Romanists pretend." Surely 
it could not relate to the admission of participants of the 
eucharist, as some have declared, " understanding neither 
what they say, nor whereof they affirm ;" for that ordi- 
nance, from the first, had been partaken by all believers, 
— men, women, and even children. None were excluded 
who professed a faith in Christ, and assembled with 
those who were distinguished as his followers. Whereas, 
to the mysteries of which I am treating, women and chil- 
dren were not admitted at all. 

Some modern writers, unwilling to yield the point to 
the Catholics, have suggested that it was a part of the 
ancient discipline, or method of training up those who 
were to exercise the higher functions of Christian con- 
fessors. But ought we to suppose that the teachers of 
the religion of that Divine Instructor, who declared, "I 
spake openly to the world, and in secret I have said 
nothing," should have private communications relative 
to doctrine or precept, to be imparted only under solemn 
sanctions, in the most cautious manner, to a select few-— 
when the directions given to them were to "go into all 
the world, and preach the gospel to every creature?" 
This Discipline of the Secret, therefore, could have 
no relation to the p-esaibed and usual method of teaching, 
which was general, undisguised, and explicit; and ad- 
dressed to " every one who had ears to hear." 

Some remarks of Archbishop Whately on this subject, 
fire so striking, that I must adorn my page by their 
insertion.^i Having spoken of the passages in the 
Epistles of Saint Paul, which characterize the Christian 

2° Antiquities of the Church, book s. ch. v. sec. 3. 
2^ The Errors of Romanism traced to their origin in human nature. 
Lend. 18.30, p. 79. 


religion as containing mysteries, be says, "this the 
Apostle does in manifest allusion to the mysteries of the 
ancient Pagan religions, with which, in this respect, he 
contrasts Christianity; inasmuch as in this last, there was 
not, as among the Pagans, a distinction between the 
initiated and uninitiated — a revelation to some of the 
worshippers of certain holy secrets, from which the rest 
were excluded ; nor great mijsteries and lesser mysteries, (as 
the Eleusinian,) in which ditierent persons were initiated ; 
.but, on the contrary, the great mysteries oi" the Christian 
faith (^ueya fivarrj^iov) wcrc made known, as far as it is ex- 
pedient and possible for man to know them, to all alike, 
whether Jev/ or Gentile, who were but willing to em- 
brace the truth : and ' to know the fellowship ' (i. e., the 
common participation) 'of the mystery,' was offered to 
all. There was not one system of religion for a certain 
tiivoured few, and another for the mass of believers; but 
' the great mystery of godliness ' was made accessible, 
gradually indeed in proportion as they were able to bear 
it, but universally. To all Christ's disciples it was 
'given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven;' 
there was one Lord, one faith, one baptism ; and, though 
with diversity of gifts, one and the same spirit sanctify- 
ing the church, and dwelling in all its members." 

We must, therefore, explicitly state, that the Disci- 
pline OF THE Secret had no discriminating reference to 
Christian doctrines or precepts, to opinions of faith, to 
principles of conduct, or to rules of life and manners, but 
to engagements to undertake, and exertions to accomplish, a 
specific object ;^^ and what that was has already been 

By MYSTERY, in the ecclesiastical use and sense, is 
meant, something secret, uncommimicated ; ^ religious rites or 
ceremonies; or as defined by Elias Cretensis, in his 
Commentary on Gregory Nazianzen,^* " Those thirigs 

^' Arcana Sacramentalia revelata, p. Q7. 

^ To aTCo^QijTov, rem arcanam, occultam, non omnibus notam. 
ChrysoSTOM : Horn. vii. ad 1 Corinth. — Mvarrj^iov leyerat to firj 
Ttaai SerjXoviiisvov, aXla fiovots roig (fikois d'aQ^ov/nsvov. Mysterium 
dicitur quod non omnibus declaratur, sed solis amicis creditur 
Theodoket, in cap. xv. epist. 1 Corinth. CASAUBOist, Exercit. xvi. ad 
Baron, treats learnedly on this subject. 

^ Hysteria appellanturea quse apud nos in maximis festis pera- 
guntur, et item Mvrjacs, eorum, quantum licet, cum metu et reverantise 


which are transacted by us in solemn festivals are called 
MYSTERIES, the hiowlcdge of which is attained by superior 
illumination, &c., and imparted only under the guard of 
special caution, restrictions, and injunctions of secrecy." 
The obligation which was at first, and still is, exacted 
from the initiates, was not of the nature of the solemn 
OATH which is administered in courts of justice, called 
by the Greeks Oi^y.o^, and by the Latins jusjurandum ; but 
a sacramentmn, i. e., protestation, something declared by a 
solemn or holy mind ; and of the precise nature, as well 
as name, of the promise or engagement made by soldiers 
to be true to their commander.^^ Thus, in the first 
century, Pliny reports in his letter to the Emperor 
Trajan, that the Christians were wont to meet together 
in the night, and bind themselves by an obligation of 
fealty, '' sacramentum ;"" and Herodian, at tlie beginning 
of the third century, says, " We retain still the military 
engagement, which is a sacred obligation of the Roman 
nobility."^^ As tliis immediately preceded tlie communi- 
cation of the holy mystery, the terms sacrament and 
mystery were used as synonymous, or of like import; thus, 
the person who had received the knowledge of the mys- 
tery, was said to have received the sacrament. And so, 
in ecclesiastical history, the word fivavri^iov in the G-reek, 
w^as rendered sacramentiim in the Latin, writers f^ but 
through modern writers a mistake runs concerning what 
the ancients called sacramentum, as though it meant the 
eucharist; whereas it means only the obligation of the initi- 
ated. Still, there is a bearing upon its original designation 
in the terms by which it is now defined — " an outward 
and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace." 

explicatio, quae hseo mystica sunt, nee apud vulgus efFeranda ; et quia 
lis quibus hgec traduntur danda opera est ut sensus suos velut 
claudentes, ac supra omnes corporeas rerum assui'gentes, supemas 
illuminationes excipiant. — Eli^ Cretensi's Comment, in Greg. 
Nazianz. Orat. iii. § 104., v. ii., p. 374. 

MTZTHPION^Mysterium — arcanum ad aliqua sacra pertinens ; 
res arcana et paucis cognita, neque communicanda nisi initiatis. — 

^° See Appendix, Note F. 

36 ^yp (fvlMaaovxEQ rov ar^arioTiKov o^y.ov og eari rrjs Pcofiaicov 
a^XVS ovi"-vov /uvazTj^iov. Servato etiammilitari jurejurando, quod est 
unum Komani principatus mysterium sanctissimum. — Herodian, 
lib. viii. 2' See Appendix, Note G. 


I now proceed to quote from the Christian fathers 
some passages referring to this^ recondite discipline, the 
mysteries, and the adepts.^^ 

In the Apostolic Constitutions, which are ascribed to 
Clement, the fellow-labourer of Saint Peter and Saint 
Paul, there is this injunction, — "These regulations must 
on no account be communicated to all sorts of persons, 
because of the mysteries contained in them."^^ And it is 
made a part of the deacon's office, not only to see that 
the uninitiated [afivr,roi'\ have retired before the presiding 
officer speaks, but to keep the doors, that none, who are 
2minitiated, should enter during the time of the oblation ','^^ 
a service still performed by deacons in the masonic 
lodges. Nor can it be duobted of whom are required the 
qualifications " irre-proacliahle and well reported ; of a sound 
mind and body, having no blemish or defect, neither maimed nor 

St. Clement of Alexandria, one of the most emi- 
nent fathers of the church, who v^^rote towards the end 
of the second century, frequently compares this secret 
DISCIPLINE with the Heathen mysteries, and their interior 
and recondite wisdom ; and defends it by a reference to 
what the wisest aspired to and honoured.'^^ He promises 
that he would advert to some of the chief or leading 
points of this venerable knowledge in his Stromata, but 
represents himself as bound not openly to make known, 
or explain the whole of it, lest, according to the proverb, 
"he should put a sword into the hands of a child. "'^ To 
an}'- one who might be at a loss to account for his declin- 
ing to make publicly known, and in a great measure 
altogether concealing, a species of knowledge confessedly 
of high import, he replies, that it was not to be com- 
prehended except by minds that had been purged and 
delivered from the dominion of the passions; that there 
would, moreover, be a danger in it, lest occasion might 
be given to contentious persons, for cavilling and insult.** 

Many other passages of this kind are to be met with 

"8 See Apendix, Note H. 

^ d' y^Qi] drjfioaiEvsiv snt Ttavxtov, dia ra ev avrais fivoTixa. 

* <I>vXaTTEad'coaav 8s at d'v^ai fx-rj rig aniaros eiaeXd'si, r; afivTjro&. 

■" See Appendix, Note I. ■'^ See Appendix, Note J. 

^ See Appendix, Note K. ^^ See Appendix, Note L. 


in St. Clement, by any who will but diligently explore 
his Stromata. 

I make another extract from this ancient writer, which 
may elucidate the frequent references in Freemasonry 
to the east^ the place of light — and to the construction of 
churches, so that the altar should be at the east. 

" As the east is the image of the new-born day, and 
thence the light is diffused, dispelling the darkness ; and 
inasmuch as, to those who are involved in ignorance, the 
being brought to light by the opening day of the know- 
ledge of truth, is as the rising sun ; — so devotion should 
be paid by facing the east; and ancient temples were so 
built that the worshippers who stood looking at the 
monuments should be taught to turn towards the east."'*^ 

Another reason, indeed, is assigned by St. Basil in the 
xcii. Cafio7i, and b}'' Athanasius, qucest. ad. Antiochnm, q. 
xxxvii., "Because Christ made his ap]3earance on earth 
in the east, and there ascended into heaven, and there 
will appear again at the last day; so that the faithful 
who look for his glorious appearing should pray towards 
the east." 

Tertullian, in the second century, after repelling, in 
his most admirable Apology, the vile accusations brought 
against the Order, says, "If we do all in private, how 
came you to know what is done? Not from one of our- 
selves ; for none are admitted to religious mysteries 
without an oath of secrecy. We appeal to your Thracian 
and Eleusinian mysteries. And we are especially bound 
to this caution, because, if we proved faithless, we should 
not only provoke heaven, but draw upon our heads the 
utmost rigour of human displeasure. And how should 
strangers betray us? They know nothing but by report 
and hearsay ; for, hence ye profane ! is the prohibition from 
all holy mysteries. And as to the evidence from common 
fame, you know how little it is to be depended upon; 
and yet this fame is the only evidence you produce 
against us; and she is, moreover, the worst evidence, 
because she has continued so many years to publish and 
to insinuate into the minds of men these wicked stories, 
and yet is still as far from proving them."''^ 

Reprobating their injustice, he says, "Because they 

•*^ See Appendix, Note M. ■'^ See Appendix, Note N. 


know little or nothing of our principles, tliey despise 
and condemn them, and endeavour to blacken that vir- 
tue and goodness, which is so conspicuous in us, with 
imagined vices and impurities : whereas it would be more 
just to judge of our secret actions by those that appear, 
than to condemn what is evidently good and praiseworthy 
upon suspicion of private faults." 

MiNUcius Felix wrote a learned and eloquent defence 
of the Christian religion, which Dr. Lardner thinks was 
.pubKshed about A. D. 210. This work is in the form 
of a dialogue between Ca3cilius NataHs, a Heathen, and 
Octavius Januarius, a Christian, in which Minucius was 
judge. Among other things, Caecilius states, that "the 
Christians know one another by secret signs, and love one 
another almost before they are acquainted. "^^ 

Origen, who wi'ote about the commencement of the 
third century, in reply to the cavil of Celsus that there 
was among the Cinistians a secret doctrine., K^vfiov Soyfia, 
says, "that inasmuch as the essential and imjjortant 
doctrines and principles of Christianity were openly 
taught, it was foolish to object that there were other 
things which were recondite, and not disclosed to all ; for 
this is common to the Christian discipline with that of 
the philosophers, where some things are exterior, and 
some interior, for it is enough that he says it was so with 
some of the disciples of Pythagoras, who were taught in 
private what it was not suitable to communicate to un- 
purified ears ; nay, neither to the Greeks, nor barbarians, 
is it considered wrong that their mysteries are hidden. 
Rashly and unjustly, therefore, does he criminate the 
Christians for having something occult."''^ 

From the recovered fragment of a Disputation of 
Archelaus, who was Bishop of Mesopotamia, in 278, 
the following extract is made ; — it is part of an address 
to a newly admitted member. "These mysteries the 
Church now communicates to him who has passed 
through the introductory grade. They are not explained 
to the Gentiles at all ; nor are they taught openly in the 
hearing of catechumens : but much that is spoken, is 
in disguised terms, that the faithful \nil.TOI'\ who pos- 
sess the knowledge, may be still more informed, and 

■*' See Appendix, Note 0. ^* See Appendix, Note P. 


those who are not acquainted with it suffer no disadvan- 

St. Cyril, of Jerusalem^ in the beginning of the fourth 
century, in his Catecliesis, which is allowed to be the most 
ancient and best digested abridgment of Christian insti- 
tutes, says, " The Lord spake in parables to his hearers 
in general, but to his disciples he explained in private 
the parables and comparisons of which he had made use 
in public. The splendour of glory is for those who are 
early enlightened ; obscurity and darkness are the portion 
of the unbelievers and the ignorant* Just so the cliurcli 
discovers its mysteries to those who have advanced be- 
yond the class of catechumens ; — we employ obscure 
terms to others."^ 

St. Basil, surnamed the Great, Bishop of Csesarea, about 
the middle of the fourth centuiy, remarks, "We receive 
the dogmas transmitted to us by writing, and those 
which have descended to us from the apostles beneath 
the mystery of oral tradition ; — for several things have 
been handed to us without wi-iting, lest the vulgar, too 
familiar with our dogmas, should lose a due respect for 
them." — " This is what the uninitiated are not permitted 
to contemplate ; and how should it ever be becoming to 
write and circulate an account of among the people V 
These secrets he calls ano^^r^ra, not to be divulged, but 
locked up in silence. Referring to the charitable institu- 
tions for the reception of sojourners, he exclaims, "What 
injustice can be attributed to us by the erection of lodges 
for the reception of sojourners who come to us, and for 
the relief of indigent and distressed brethren 'i"'^^ 

St. Gregory Nazianzen, one of the greatest ornaments 
of the Greek church, and Bishop of Constantinople in 
379, says, "You have heard as much of the mystery as 
we are allowed to speak openly in the ears of all ; the 
rest will be communicated to you in private, and that 
you must retain within yourself." — " Our mysteries are 
not to be expressed to strangers."^^ Referring to those 
who censured, he remarked, "In this only they show 
their piety, that they condemn others as deficient in 

*^ See Appendix, Note Q. ^ See Appendix, Note E. 

*^ See Appendix, Note S. ^' See Appendix, Note T. 


St. Ambrose, Archbishop of Milan, at the close of the 
fourth century, declares, " AH the mystery should be kept 
concealed, guarded by a faithful silence, lest it should be 
inconsiderately divulged to the ears of the profane." And 
in his book on the Mysteries, [c. i., n. 2.] "It is not given 
to all to contemplate the depth of our mysteries : the 
Levites exclude from them, at first, that they may not 
be seen by those who ought not to behold them, nor re- 
ceived by those wlio cannot preserve them." In his 
comment upon the verse in Psalm cxvii., "J have hidden 
thy ivords in my heart, that I may not sin,'''' he remarks, "He 
«ins against God who divulges to the unworthy the 
mysteries confided to him. The danger is not merely 
of violating truth, but of telling truth, if he allow him- 
self to give hints of them to those from whom they 
ought to be concealed." And he opposes such indiscre- 
tion by the words of our Saviour, "Beware of casting 
your pearls before swine. "^ 

St. Augustine, Bishop of Hyppo, in 395, says, — 
"Having dismissed the catechumens, we have retained 
you only to be our hearers; because, besides those things 
which belong to all Christians in common, we are now 
to discourse to you of sublime mysteries, which none 
are qualified to hear but those who by the master's fa- 
vour are made partakers of them. You ought, therefore, 
to attend to them with the greater reverence, by how 
much more sublime those principles are, which are 
committed only to the approved, than those which 
others are w^ont to hear." And he declares that to have 
taught them openly would be a betraying of them.^* 

St. Chrysostom, Bishop of Constantinople, in 398, 
expresses himself as follows, on the secrecy of the mys- 
teries. " I wish to speak openly, but I dare not, on ac- 
count of those who are not initiated. These persons 
render explanations more difficult for us, by obliging us 
either to speak in obscure terms, or to unveil the things 
which are secret:" — but adds, "I shall, therefore, avail 
myself of disguised terms,'''' discoursing oweayiaa/nevcog, 
adumbratim. — " When the holy mysteries are celebrated, 
we drive away all uninitiated persons, and then shut the 

^ See Appendix, Note U. f^ See Appendix, Note V. 


He mentions the acclamations practised by those who 
are initiated in the mysteries, and which (he says) "I 
here pass over in silence, for it is forbidden to disclose 
such things before the profane. "^^ 

To show how often this venerable father refers to the 
Discipline of the Secret, I quote the observation of the 
learned Casaubon. "Is there any one so much a 
stranger to the writings of the fathers, who has not re- 
marked, when any allusion is made to the mysteries, that 
the phrase, the initiated hiow ivhat I mean, is the apology 
for not being more explicit? It occurs at least fifty 
times in the writings of Chrysostom alone, and as often 
in those of Augustin."^*^ 

Palladius, in his life of Chrysostom, records as a 
great outrage, that a tumult having been excited against 
him by his enemies, they forced their way into the pene- 
tralia, where the uninitiated beheld what it was not 
proper for them to see. And Chrysostom himself men- 
tions the circumstance in his Epistle to Pope Innocent.^' 

St. Cyril, Bishop of Alexandria, in 412, in his Vllth 
book against Julian, declares, " These mysteries are so 
profound and so exalted, that they can be comprehended 
by those only who are enlightened. I shall not, there- 
fore, attempt to speak of what is most admirable in them, 
lest, by discovering them to the uninitiated, I should 
offend against the injunction not to give what is holy to 
the impure, nor to cast pearls before such as cannot 
estimate their worth." And elsewhere, " I should say 
much more if I were not afraid of being heard by those 
who are uninitiated ; because men are apt to deride 
what they do not understand : and the ignorant, not 
being aware of the weakness of their minds, condemn 
what they ought most to venerate."^^ 

Theodoret, Bishop of Cyzicus, in Syria, 420, in the 
first of his three dialogues, that entitled " The Immu- 
table," introduces Orthodoxus speaking thus — " Answer 
me, if you please, in mystical and obscure terms, for, 
perhaps, there are persons present who are not initiated 
in the mysteries." And in his preface to Ezekiel, tracing 

^ See Appendix, Note W. ^ See Appendix, Note X. 

s'' See the passage in Casaubon, de rebus Sacris et Eccles., p. 558. 
** See Appendix, Note Y. 


up the secret discipline to the commencement of the 
Christian era, says, " these mysteries- are so august, that 
we ought to keep them with the greatest caution."^'' 

St. DioNYsius, the Aj-eojxigite, is said to have been 
the first Bishop of Athens, after he was converted by St. 
Paul, [Acts xvii, 34.] and to have suffered martyrdom 
about A. D. 95 : but the works attributed to him were 
probably written in the fifth century. I do not refer to 
them as of much importance, other than to show that at 
the time of their publication, the Secret Association ob- 
tained no little celebrity. The frequent allusions to it 
in various parts of his Ecclesiasticae and Hierarchiae, are 
highly interesting.^" 

To show that these mysteries were retained under 
ecclesiastical sanction to a still later period, I refer to 
the Seal of the ancient Abbey of Arbroath, iyi Scotland, 
and to the explanation given of it by the Rev. Charles 
CoRDiNET, in his " Description of the Ruins of North 
Britain," 2 vols. 4to. 

" The figures sculptured on the seal marked INITIA- 
TION, evidently represent (says he) some formidable 
ceremony in a sacred place, where a pontiff presides in 
state ; one hand on his breast expressive of seriousness, 
the other stretched out at a right angle holding a rod 
and cross, the badge of high office, while he makes some 
awful appeal respecting a suppliant, who, in a loose 
robe, blindfolded, with seeming terror kneels before the 
steps of an altar, while several attendants with drawn 
swords brandished them over his head." Mr. Cokdinet 
intimates the resemblance of these figures to an engraving 
which made the frontispiece to a book about Free- 
masonry : and then adds, that both bring to remem- 
brance a description which Plutarch, in his famous essay 
" De Osiris," gives of the engraving of a seal which the 
Priests of Isis used in their solemnities, — namely, that 
of a man kneeling, with his hands hound, a knife at his throat, 
&c. " And (says he) is it not a little remarkable, which 
is more to the present purpose, in how many particulars 
the mysterious fate of Osiris, as recorded by the above 
celebrated author, corresponds with the accounts of 
Hiram ; a strong insinuation that the annals of the 

^^ See Appendix, Note Z. ^° See Appendix, Note AA. 


latter, however mutilated and defaced, have somehow 
or other been descended from the Eleusiniaji Mysteries, 
and that the Masonic rites of initiation into a Lodge, are a 
faint sketch, an imperfect epitome of the august cere- 
monies which took place at initiation into the secrets 
which hallowed the primaval fanes : and this high origin, 
when discerned, may have been at the bottom of that 
general respect which men of learning have avowed for 

"This subject, as an amusing research into antiquity, 
may be resumed ; it only remains at present to specify 
that Hiram coming forth in hallowed dignity of charac- 
ter from within the veil of the sanctuary ; violated in 
the open Temple of the world by the ignorant and pro- 
fane ; concealed for a time in awful secrecy ; — the want 
of his presence pathetically deplored ; — the ardent soli- 
citude with which he is sought for ; the acclamation of 
joy at finding him again ; and consequent discovery of 
the WORD, almost of itself developes the secret lohich tlie 
'personification had involved.'''' 

The testimony of uninterrupted tradition for eighteen 
hundred years, corroborates the facts to which these 
citations allude, and is the only correct explanation 
and illustration that can be given of them. But they 
have been here cited, to authenticate that tradition, — 
and laid before the uninitiated, as, at least, presumptive 
evidence; being rather incidental references, than direct 
developements. But look at the terms, ^' pi-omise of 
secrecy,'''' — ^'hiitiates,^^ — " 7iight meet'mgs,'''' — " symhoUc lec- 
tures,''^ — 'tokens of cogn'tzance'"' found so frequently in the 
writings of the early Christian fathers, — and say, can 
you suppose that these are in reference to the Lord's 
Supper only, or at all? Is it not much more consistent 
to suppose that as they are not used in the celebration 
of that rite, and have no relation to its nature or design, 
but are peculiar to Freemasonry now, they indicate its 
existence then? And may we not infer that the Frater- 
Jiity preserved its connexion with its parent stock till 
past its minority, and that coming of age and free, it set 
up for itself; but still retained a sacred regard to its 
early discipline, continued its veneration for the holy 
gospel, and cherished and supported its religious charac- 


ter; although it devoted itself more directly to the 
building of churches ? 

Masons have always appeared in the profession of 
architects, — workmen in the Temple, — erectors of a 
sacred edifice ; — and they have been either operative 
craftsmen, or superintendents of work. In consequence 
of the changes which take place in civil society, partly, 
and partly from other causes, — principally, perhaps, for 
the purpose of extending the charitable benefits of the 
association, the operative business of the Order has been 
superseded by the speculative; and the tools and the 
symbols retained, while the manual labours are not 

Finally, the original object of the institution has been 
answered, and that secrecy which was its guard has ceased 
to be necessary ; but the institution itself has been con- 
tinued, and with it the forms and ceremonies, the rites 
and requisitions, which were adopted at its early foun- 
dation. The indescribable fascination of mysteriousness, 
the charm of fraternal cordiality, the animation of fre- 
quent interviews, together with the ardour in the cause 
of beneficence which is enkindled and diffused, and 
rendered of happy influence by means peculiarly their 
own, are operating motives with Freemasons for attach- 
ment and adherence to the Order ; and these they plead 
for its continuance. 

^^ Destroy it not, for a blessing is in it." — IsAi. Ixv. 8. 


Note A. " Habebant symbola, quibus in actu initiationis esteban- 
tur, et tanquam tesseris se thiasotse discernebant." Justin. Apol., 2. 

Note B. For such information respecting Hiram Abiff as has 
been committed to writing, I refer to the following works. 

1. rtabiy nnsa i- e. Clavicula Salomonis, seu occulta occultorum, 
orationes semiforas ; liber de secretis secretorwn ; septem altitudines,^ 
&c. [This work was translated from the original Hebrew into Latin, 
and enriched with illustrations, hy Joh. de Plexia, in the year 1435, 
and published in 1626.] 

2. R. Gedalia, in Schalscheleth Hakkabala, p. 89. 

3. R. Schabtai, in Siphte Jeschinim. 

4. Ti^l-a Middoth liber, sive tractatus de mensuris Templi. Edid. 
Const. L'Empereur. Lug. Bat., 1630. [This work was republished 
in the collections of Surenhusius, pars ii., Amst., 1702, fol. with a 
commentary and notes by R. Mosche, fil. Maimonides, and R. Or. de 

5. -^ypi-i bs'^ii ^so Liter Templi Sancti, a R. Jacob Seshpates, 
Amst., 1653, fol. 

6. Bethabechira, hoc est, Domus electa. Versione Latine a Ludov 
de Viel. 

7. riisn ni^.^n "iCiS i- e. Liber initiationis Templi, ed. Moses Ben 
Gerson Chepetz. Venet., 5456. [A. 0. 1696.] 4to. [Vide Acta Eru- 
ditorum, 1696, p. 449.] 

8. JosEPHUs, Antiq., lib. vii., c. 3., lib. viii., c. 2. 

9. Pineda, de Rebus Salomonis. Venet., 1611, fol. 

10. Oarpzovius, de Sapientia Salomonis. Lips., 1673. 

11. Natalis Alexand., Hist. Eccles. Vet. Test., p. 59, seq. " de 
quaestionibus Salomoni propos." 

Note C. Arringhius mentions a monumental inscription dug up 
in the Via nomentand, by which it appears that the fate of Judas 
became a proverbial form of imprecation. [See his Roma Subterra- 
nea, p. 436, and Mabillon, Mus. Ital., p. 149. J. Albert, Obs. 
Philol. in libros. Nov. Feeder., p. 233 ; and Doddridge's Family Ex- 
positor, on Acts i., 19.] 

This form appears also in the oaths administered to a certain class 
of the early Christians, with additional formality of reference : " Si 
vero non haec omnia servavero, habeam partem cum Juda, et lepra 


Giezi, et tremore Cain, insuper et poenis quse lege eorum pietatis con- 
tinentur, ero subjectus." [See Novella Constitutiones Justiniani ; 
cum notis J. F. Homberg. Marb., 1717, 4to.. lib. viii., tit. iii. " De 
Jurejurando quod prtest. ab his qui administr. accip."] 

Note D. Toia'^ ey.agov sy.y.hjoiav Tay/uarce, ev fiev to rcov 
TjyovjLisvcov, Svo §e ra tcov viio^e^qy.oTuiv ; lov rrjg eyy.h]aias rov X^i- 
arov Xaov stg Svo Tay^aia dirj^ijfiei'ov, sis 2ov to rcor Tiiarcov yai riov 
^rjSenco t^s 8ia Xovr^ov nakbvysveaias rj^icofievcov. 

EusEBius, Demonstr. Evang., lib. vii., p. 200. 

Note E. " Universam doctrinam Cliristianam veteres distingue- 
bant in t«^a, id est, ea qu« enunciari apud omnes poterunt, et 
Trt aTtoQQKira, arcana, temere non evulganda ; de quibus neque in 
familiaribus coUoquiis, neque in catechesibus, neque in concionibus 
verba temere feciebant coram Paganis. Catechumenis, aut quibus aliis 
non initiatis." Casaubon, Exercit. de Rebus sacrin el ecclesiasticls, 
Ex. xvi., p. 556. 

Note F. By reference to the best authorities, it can be shown 
that the word Sacramentum means, primarily, the soldier's engage- 
ment of fidelity to a military commander ; that he will neither prove 
traitor nor deserter, but be brave and persevering in the defence 
of the cause in which he has enlisted ; and, secondarily, an oath 
of allegiance to the government of the country of which he is a sub- 
ject, and fealty to the master whom he is bound to serve. In its 
ecclesiastical use and appropriation it means a solemn engagement to 
be true and faithful to the divine Lord and Master, and devoted to his 
service arid cause. 

The word Sacramentum is explained largely, and with many refei- 
ences and authorities, in the Lexicon Militare of Carolus de Aquino. 
Rom., 1724, fol., 2 vol. 

Note G, " Sacramentum, quas vox e versione vulgata MTSTH- 
PION interdum reddente Dan. ii., 18; iv., 6; Latinum Patrum Eccl. 
translata est, vetustior Ecclesia vocavit omnis generis rem arcanam, 
partem dictum aliquod obscurum, partem symbolum rei cujusdam 
sacrae, partem actionem certo modo consecratam et cum promisiojie 
quadam solenni conjunctam." Wegscheider, Instil. Theol. Chrisliancs 
dogmatics, §1^6, p. 302; — who adds: " Hoc sensu Tertullianus, v. 
Semler index Lai. TertulL, p. 5, ct Hieronymus potissimum. v. Beck 
comment., 762. I. — Gerhard, 1. th. viii., 201. — Suicer Th. Eccl., II., 
582, ss. 1082, 1265." 

"Apud Patres passim j^iyra fivarr^Qia vel rov anoQQrirov fivarr]- 
^<o»'." Gregor. Magn.; De Consecr., Dis. II., canone LXXIII. appel- 
larunt etiam t« ei'Sod-Bv fivar/j^ia, q. d.. interiora mysteria. Nam 
apud EpIPHANIu^r, in fine operis, ubi instituta Ecclesise exponuntur, 
ita legas, za aXka fivarrjoia ne^i Xovtqov tcov evSo&sp fivorrj^icov 

" Taciturn sacramentum," — Tertul. de prcescript. Heret., c. 26., 
torn. I., p. 31. i. e. doctrina remotior et arcana. Not. Semlee-i in loc. 

'' Qui tantum sacramentum etiam illudendo prodiderim," — i. e. tan- 
tura mysterium, tam arcanam et absconditam doctrinam. Tb. Adv. 
Valent., c. xxxii., tom. 2, p. 183. 

" Hinc igitur est quod Sacramenta Patres aripellarunt Mysteria, 
Mvrjasis, rsXeras, TsXsicoasig, sTtoTireiag, sive sfzo-ifeiag, TeXeare^iu 
item reXearty.a aut rsXeuorcy.a juvare^ia, reXsicorucag ■d'Ecoaeis, is^axi^as 


rsXeras; interdum vero o^yia, sed rarins, et avfi^oXixi]v ■d'scoloyiavy 
J. Casaubon in Baronium Exercit., xvi., cap. 43, p. 550, ed. Lond., 
1614, fol. 

The Pagan mysteries were nocturnal. So, very frequently, were 
the celebration of the Christian rites ; but this probably may have 
been a consequence of persecution. " Nocturnis multi in mj^steriis 
peragebantur ; noctu etiam initiatio Christianorum inchoabatur." 
Casaubon, ubi supra, p. 555. 

Note H. For the sake of the learned reader, for whose satisfaction, 
principally, this Appendix is made, I shall give my references to the 
Fathers in their own words, quoting volume and page, and naming the 
edition which I have consulted. 

I would here premise, that long since this investigation was made, 
I have heard that the learned and pious Reinhard has asserted in his 
" Christian Plan," that no account is given of any such secrets by any 
other writers than Clement of Alexandria, and his pupil Origen ; 
and, therefore, we are led to the conclusion, that ivhat is said by these 
writers is nothing more than the allegorizing common to the Alexan- 
drian school, and docs not afford the least indication of an existing 
Secret Society. 

Now, should it be conceded that what Clement and Origen have 
written is only Alexandrian verbiage, — vox, et preterea nihil, — the 
same cannot be predicated of the numerous references to be found in 
the works of Tertullian, Minucius, Felix, Cyril, Basil, Gregory 
Nazianzen, Ambrose, Augustine, and Chrysostom. The testimonies 
here quoted from these Fathers, ^q\v as they are, serve at least to 
show that the affirmation, that "no others than Clement and Ortgen 
had alluded to such secrets," being incorrect, must invalidate tho 
inference which PiEinhard draws, and so positively maintains. 

Note I. Ar^smovs, afie/nnrove, avsyaXrirove' iva toaiv ayioi am- 
(laii icai ipvxrj, firj exovTee ojtiXov r] QVTiSa // ti rcov toiovtcoV aXXa 
coaiv aoTioi, xai firjSsts sv avroig ij y.oXo^oe rj azeXrjg. 

Const. Apost., lib. viii.. cap. xi. 

Note J. " Non solum antem Epicurei et Plato multa occultabant, 
sed etiam Epicurei dicunt quasdam esse apud se arcana, et non per- 
mittere omnibus ut ea scripta legant." Clem. Alex. Stromata, lib. v. 

The learned Pacji, in quoting this passage, refers to the declaration 
of Jamblicus, lib. ii., de vita Pythagoras. " Cum externis, et, ut ita 
dicam, prophanis, si quandoque usus fuerit congregandum esse, nequa- 
quam sua Sacramenta enunciabant, sed per symbola et arcanas tes- 
seras obscure et latenter sibi mutuo sensa mentis velut aBuigmatibus 
significabant." Pagi Crilica Historico- Chronologica in universes An- 
nates Ecclesiasticos Card. Baronii. Ant., 1705, fol. 

Note K. Ta fzsv sy.coi' TtaQanefXTtoi-iai eXXsycov sniarrifiovcog, cpo- 
fiovfiEvoe v^o-fBiv a Xeyeiv ecfvXa^afiev. Clem. Alex. Strom., 1. i , 
c. i., p. 324, ed. Potteri, 2 vol. fol. Oxon., 1715. 

Exoifiaxeig KOviTTeiv svrsyvcog ra T/jg yvcoaecog ^ovXovrai OTteofiaxa. 

lb. p. 327. 

Oxt [izyag o y.ivSvvog rev ano^QijTov (og a/.tjO'cog t//s ovrcog (piXouo- 
y)iag Xoyov s^oj)y/]aaad'ai roig afsiScog jtavra /icev mmXsysiv ed'eXovaiv 
ovx ev diMT], Tiavra 8a ovo/uaTa ^Tifiara wnaQQiTCTOvaiv ovdaficog 
xoa/zicog. lb. cap. 3., p. 320. See also 1. ii., p. 432. 

Note M. ETtei Ss yevs&Xiov r^ius^as eiy.cop rj avaroXq, y.ay.Ei&ev Tco 


^cog av^srai bv. ay.orovs l.a^\i>av to tt^otoV aXXa xai rois ev ayvoia 
HaXiv SovfiEvois avsTEiXs yvcoaecos nXe-d'Eias rjfte^a icara Xoyov rov 
sXiov Ttpos Tfjv Eiod'iv^rjv avaxoXr^v at avyai,, od'ev xai ra TtaXaiorara 
rcav is^mv Ttpos Svaiv e^Xensv, iva ot anavri iipoocoitov tcov ayaXfia- 
Tcov larafisvoi tt^os avaroXrjv Tpsnead'ai StSaoy.corai. 

Strom., 1. vii., p. 520. 

For the reason of churches being built " due east and west," I refer 
to the following authorities : 

First, the Apostolic Constitutions, lib. ii., c. 57, descriplio Eccle- 
sicE. &C. JJpcoTOv /Msv o Oiy.os eara emfii]M]e, y-ar avaroXas Terpa/U- 
fieros, fil ey.aiEQOiv tcov /ueqcov t« naoToipopia tcqos m'axoXrjv. — Prime 
quidem ^"Edes sit oblonga3, ad orientem versa, ex utraque parte Pasto- 
phoria versus orientem habens. 

Secondly. " Juxta usitatiorem morem, quo Basilicarum prospectus 
ad orientem spectabat, inquit S. Paulinos, Ejjist. 12, ad Severum 
ac multo post eum Stephanus Tornacensis, Epist. 104; itemque 
Walafridus Strabo de rehus Ecclesiasticis, cap. 4. "Atque earn ob 
rationem ut in missam ex optatam patriam Paradisum, quem Dens 
plautavit ad orientem, precantes intuerentur," — docet Scriptor Quae- 
stionum ad Antiochum respond. Qucest. 37, torn. II. Athanasii. — 
Vide item Sidonium, lib. II., Epist. 10, ibique doctos interpretes. 

Note N. Si semper laternus, quando proditum est quod admitti- 
mus ? Imo aquibus prodi potuit ? Ab ipsis enim reis non utique cum 
vel ex forma omnium mysteriorum silentii fides debeatur. Samo- 
thracia et Eleusinia reticentur ; quanto magis talia quaj prodita in- 
terim etiam humanam animadversionem provocabunt, dum divina 
servatur. Si ergo non ipsi proditeres sui, sequitur ut extranei, et 
unde extraneis notitia? cum semper etiam pie initiationes arceant 
profanos et ab arbitris caveant nisi si impie minus metuunt." — " Na- 
tura famge omnibus notum est. — Hanc indicem adversus nos profertis, 
quae quod aliquando jactavit, tantoque temporis spatio in opinionem 
corroboravit. usque adhuc probare non valuit." Tertullian, Apol., 
c. vii., tom. v., p. 21. 

" Laudant quie sciunt, vituperant quae ignorant ; et id quod sciunt, 
eo quod ignorant, corrumpunt. Cum sit justius occulta de mani- 
festis, praejudicare, quam manifesta de occultis prsedamnare." lb. 
c. iii., p. 11. 

Note 0. '' Multis se notis et insignibus noscunt, et amant mutuo 
pcene antequam noveriut." Minucius Felix. Octav., Sect, ix., p. 90, 
ed. Gronov. 8vo. Lug. Bat., 1709. 

Note P. AEyEcv y.pvcpiov sivai ra Soyfta, Ttavv eotiv aroTtov' to 
8s Eivai Tiva oiov fiExa ra E^ozEpixa, fiiq sis Tois TtoXXois (p&avovTa, oi 
fiovov tSiov Tov xpi-OTiavcoi' X^oyov, aXXa yap tcov cpiXoaocpcav' Ttspt 
ois TtvES (lExa Eoav E^coTEpiy.oi. Xoyoi, etbqoi Sb EocoTEpiy.oi, xai tives 
fiBTa aicpvovTES- JIvd'ayoya, cos avTos E^a. AXXoi §" ev aTto^prjrco 
SiBaaxofiBvoi ra fiEv a^ia cpd'avBiv eis ay.pas ^ejSeXovs fiESsTta nsxa- 
S'apfiEvas' ftai rcavxa Se ra j3apj3apov y,pvcpia ovTa ov Sta^s^XrjTat' 
SioTtsp fiaTTjv /htjSe vo7]aas ay.pi^cos to y.pvcpiov tov %piaxiavta(iov, 8ia- 
^uXXei avTo?- Origen contra Celsum, lib. I., § 7, Oper., tom. i,, p. 325 
ed. Delarne. 

Note Q. TavTa ra /nvaTspta vvv rj EHxXrjaia SiByeiraf ovx earif 
e&os ed'viicots SirjyBta&af ov yap ES'vixa t« dtayovfied'a fivaxEpia' 
m^ rcifv (MOTEptcov sni y.arexovfiBvcov Xovxcog XaXovfirjv enixexaXvft- 


fievcosa iva oi Eioovres TCiaxot oi fir; siSovrsg firj j32,a^ovarj. 
Collectanea iNfonumentorum yeterum Ecclesire qute hactenus in Biblio- 
theca Vaticana delituerunt, a Laur. a Zacagnius, e soriptis Codias 
nunc primum edidit. Rom., 1698, 4to.. p. 101. 

Note R. EXsysv o Kvqios Totg /nr] ay.ovaat. Swaiievoig, ev Tiaqa^o 
XttiS, rois Se fiaS'/jraig STrsXvs i§iav tag jcaoa^oXag. O aiyaofio 
Trjg Soirjg roig TtEcpmriff^uai'oig, rj Ti<pX(oais roig aTtxaroig' ravra ra fiv 
GTrjqba vvv n ey,y.%i]aia Scqyenai riov sy. y.axriypvfisvcov fisrafiaXXofievoj 
ovy, sarii' sd'og eS'riy.or.g Siriysiad'ai: Cyril Hierosol. Oatechesis vi., 
§ xvL, p. 97, ed. Milles, foi. Oxon., 1703. 

Note S. Ov yuQ Si] rovroig aQy.&viu.ed'a cov a anoaxoXog rj to 
evayyeXiov ETtEf.(,vi]0\)'i], aXXa 7t^oXeyof.iev sTtiXeyouev ere^a, cog 
ftsyaXrjv £%ovTa TCqog to juvoTtjoiov ttjv lO'/vv, sx rov ay^acpov 8i8aay.a- 
Xias ■jta^ajSovTsg. S. Basil, de Spiritu Sancto, Opera, torn, ii., p. 352, 
fol. Paris, 1678, 3 torn. fol. 

K.aXog sy.stvoc deSiSay/Ltevoo rcov fivaTr^Quov ra asfiva aiioTtrj §ia- 
oco^sad'ai, a ya^ ovde stiotttovsip e^exi roig auvr/Zoig tovtiov itrng 
ety.cog ti]v SiSaoxaXiav d'^iu/u/Sovsiv et^ ygajufzaaiv. lb. 

Tcov sy. rrj EyMX7]aia TtEtfivXayfiBvcov §oy.(iarcov yri^vy/narcov to. 
fiTj EX Tov syy^atfov SiSaaxaXiag sxofir;r, ra Srj sy. t//s rcov aitoaroXcov 
TtaQaSoGBcog SiaSod'Evra nfiiv ev fivarriQico itaqa sdEi^aiuEd'a. lb. 

Tiva 8b a8iy.ovf.iE7' y.azaycoyra roig ^si'O'g oiy.oSofiovvXEs roig xara 
Tta^oSov sjctfoircoot, roig d'EQc/.TiEiag rivog 8ia rrjv aa&EVEiav Seo- 
fiEvoig. Basil., Epis. ccclxxi., p. 1147. 

Note T. Ext]g rov fivarrj^iov Ey.cpoQa, rag rcov TtoXXtov axoaig 
ovy. aTCOQ^rjra.i' ra 8e aXXa Eiaio fiad"tiar], a y.^vy.'rjg Ttaoa asavrco 
atpQayi8i y.^arovfiEva, TtXrjv sy.Eivo EvnyyEX.i'Qo uai. Greg. Nazaiaz., 
Oral, xl., p. 672. Opera edit. Morelli, 2 vol. fol. Paris, 1630. 

Mi]8e Bxcpoga roig e^co ra ttoXXu rcov 7]/UErE^tcov jUvarrjgicov eivai. 

lb. Orat. xlii. 

Note U. " Latere debet omne mj-sterium, et quasi operiri silentio, 
ne profanis temere divulgitur auribus." Ambrosius. ne Abra., 1. i., 
c. v., No. 38, torn, i., p. 223. Opera, 2 vol. fol. Paris, 1686. 

" Cave ne incante divulges mysteria. Sunt plurima quae cruda dis- 
pliceant, toda delectant. Fove igitar pectore tua alta mysteria qua3 
prematuro sermone et insidiis auribus vel infirmis quasi incocta com- 
mittas, atque auditor avertatur et cum horrore fastigiat ; qui si 
coctiora gustaret spiritalis cibi percipiat suavitatem." lb. torn, i., 
p. 146. 

" Est etiam ilia commendae orationis et voti disciplina ut non 
divulgemus orationem, sed abscondita teneamus mysteria." lb. de 
Cain et Abel. torn, i., p. 146. 

" Decat Deo qui commissa sibi mysteria putaverit indignis esse 
vulganda. Periculum itaque non est solum falsa dicere, sed etiam 
vera, si quis ea insinuat quibus non oportet." lb. torn, i., p. 805. 

Note V. " Dimissis jam catechumenis, vos tantum ad audiendum 
retinuemus. Quia, prseter ilia qua3 omnes Christianos convenit in 
commune servare, specialiter de coelestibus mysteriis locuturi sumus, 
qu£e audire non possunt, nisi qui eo donante jam domino perceperunt. 
Tauto ergo majore reverentia audire qua3 dicimus, qiianto majore ista 
sunt quae fidelibus committuntur, quam ilia qute etiam Catechumeni 
audire consuaverunt." Augustin, Serm. i. ad Neophytos, in Append. 
torn. X., p. 845. Opera, Basil, 1569, fol. 


••' Prodisse potius quam edicisse oestimantur." 

" Non solum sancto quodam silentio divinora dogmata, ne in vulgus 
publicata vilescerent, involuta, Ethnicorum Theologi tenuere, sed ut 
eandem viam inivere, imo proeivere, sacri utriusque Foederis Scripto- 
res ; quod Dei secretum area foederis, a suprapositis Cherubinis obum- 
brata et velando honorata, siguificatum olim fuisse." lb. De bono 
persevan., 1. ii., c. 16, torn. vii. 

Note W. BovXofiai (.isra aacfcos nvrco eiTTEif ov roXfico Ss §i.a 
auvvTug. OvTot ya^ Svuy.oXcore^av rj/ntv Tcoiovoi t/]v £^ey?]aiv ccfayxa- 
^ovres, 'rj fir} Xeyeii' aafco^' rj sig avrovg sk^s^s/.!' ra nTCo^^rjra. Chry- 
sosTOM., Horn. xl.. in 1 Cor. xv., 29. p. 688. Opera ed. Saville. 8 vol. 
fol. Eton, 1612. ■ 

fisXXcov x^poToreii', rag sv.eii'coi' ev/as xnXtt, tots, avroi e7riy>?/- 
wt^ovrai, em^ocoaiv, aite^ laaaiv oi /nE/tvi^uti'oi. ; ov ya() §s ■d'e/uis 
eTti rmv a/iv>]Tcov s^ny.aXvTXTr^v aTtai'Ta. lb. Homil. xviii., in 2 Cor., 
p. 872. 

Avro tov fivoTrjniov croaov sXsov, noarje fiX-avd'omae; laaaiv rov 
fiEftvrifjLBvoi. lb. Hum. in JMatth. Ixxii. 

Note X. " Quis ita hospes in Patrum lectione, cui set ignota for- 
mula in mentioue sacramentorum potissimum usu trita, loaaiv ot 
fiefiv?]fievoi, norunt Initiad quod dicilur ? Qute formula in uniiis 
Chrysostomi Homiliis aut aliis scriptis minimum quinquaginta locis 
potest observari ; apud Augustinum non multo varius." Casaubon, 
de Rebus Sacris el Ecclesiaaticis, xvi.. p. 556, fol. Lond., 1614. 

Note Y. la^vos §e Xiav sari /Sa&vg o st/ avrco Xoyog, t«s 
rcov TtXavcofirivmv Siayovias ovy. aXioaifior Iva ravrrjv] sis rag tio 
afivrjTcov Ey.fEQCov ay.oag t« y.Ey.QVfifUva, 7touoy(iovaaifiai XEyovTi no 
Xoiaro' Mr] Sanr] xa ayia roig rvoi, f/rjds /3aXTr]rs roig /.laqyaqiiag 
vftcov EjiiTi^oad'Ev tiov xoiocov. Cyril Alexandr., torn, vi., p. 247, 
ed. MiLLES, fol. Oxou., 1703. 

Note Z. Ov y^Qq aacfiog evtzeiV Eiy.og ya^ rivag afivsrovg naQsivai: 
oiviyuarcoScog 77 anoy^ioig egtm. Thkodoret., dial. ii. 

A^io 8e /j,voTiy.cor£Qov aTtoy.Qivaad'ai' zivas ya^ lacog a/ivrjzai Tta^E- 
azTj-ycaaiv. lb. dial. i. 

Note AA. In the fifth chapter of his Hierarchy, Dionysius dis- 
tinguishes the tradition of the sacrament into three grades, y.a&a^aig, 
purification ; fivrjaig, initiation ; and tEXEicoaig, accomplishment ; and 
mentions the ceremony also BTioxpsia, bringing to sight. 

There have been several editions of the works of Dionysius Areo- 
pagita. The best is that printed at Venice, in 2 vols, fol., 1755-6. 

The learned Casaubon styles him, " Scriptcr sane antiquissimus et 
elegantissimus." In Exercit. xvi., p. 565. 



Aechelaus, Bishop of Mesopotamia, flourished 278. 

Athanasius, Bishop of Alexandria, forty-six years, from 330 to 
375, when he died. 

Augustine, Bishop of Hyppo, in Africa, flourished in the latter 
part of the fourth century. 

Basil, Archbishop of Cesaria, b. 326, d. 379. 

Chrysostom, Bishop of Constantinople, b. 354, d. 407. 

Clement, of Alexandria, flourished at the end of the second and 
beginning of the third century, before 218. 

Clement, of Eome, a contemporary of the Apostles, Bishop of 
that see nine years, from 93 to 102. 

Cyprian, Bishop of Carthage, d. 258. 

Cyril, of Alexandria, d. 444. 

Cyril, of Jerusalem, d. 386. 

DiONYSius Areopagita. 

Epiphanius, Bishop of Salamis, in Cyprus, d. 403. 

EusEBius, Bishop of Csesarea, m Palestine, author of the Ecclesi- 
astical History, from the birth of Christ to the reign of Constantino 
the Great. He died in the time of Constantine the Younger. B. 270, 
d. 339. 

GrREGORY Nazianzen, Bishop of Nazianzum, in Cappadocia, b. 
324, d. 389. 

Ignatius, Bishop of Antioch, disciple of St. John, the Apostle and 
EvangeUst, died by martyrdom in 108. 

MiNTJCius Felix, a Roman orator, 210. 

OriGen, Minister at Csesarea, in Palestine, b. 185, d. 254. 

Tertullian, a Presbyter of Carthage, d. about 216. 

Theodoret, Ecclesiastical Historian, and Bishop of Cyzdcus, in 
Syria, b. 386, d. about 420. 


After the preceding pages were written, they were shown to a 
friend, who, being a Royal Arch Mason, expressed a wish that I 
had exhibited some information respecting that department of the 
Institution; believing that it was ancient, while he admitted that 
other degrees, most of which bore the title of " Knights," were 
modern chivalric appendages. To gratify him, and inform others, I 
have collected the particulars which follow. 



When, in the fourth century, those Christian mission- 
aries, who had undertaken to build churches in various 
parts of the world, turned their attention more directly 
to the structure of the fabric, they employed in that 
business those who had been regularly taught both the 
theory and practice of architecture ; and, though they 
might occasionally labour with them, engaged, princi- 
pally, as superintendents of the work. And it has 
always been the case, that in the erection of sacred 
edifices, more particularly cathedrals, the undertaking 
was contracted for, and carried on, under the direction 
of Wardens ; the Bishop being looked up to for counsel, 
encouragement, approbation, and blessing.^ About the 
more humble and preparatory arrangement, such as 
digging for the foundation, getting out stone from the 
quarry, or preparing the mortar, coimnon labourers were 
employed; but those to whom was assigned the bringing 
rude ashlars into form, squaring the quoins, erecting the 
edifice, must he professed Christians; and these, though 
under the direction of the Fellows of the original insti- 
tution, yet, as being operative workmen had their own 
regulations for those they employed. From among the 
master workmen were appointed some to attend to the 
construction of the Arch, on which the strength and 
beauty of the edifice much depended ; to the forming of 
the altar, and to what might be considered the more 
sacred parts of the structure ; and in general to the 
finishing of the building. Without stating further 
particulars, my present design is to give some infor- 
mation respecting the association, or Chapter, for the 

' See Appendix, Note I. 


Arch. ^The accuracy with which the arch must be formed, 
the symmetry of its structure, the exact adaptation of 
the key-stone, and its insertion and fitting in, so as to 
perfect the construction, was a very nice business. 
Only the well-informed and the skilful were employed 
upon it. The form or turn of the arch which was 
adopted, and has ever since been peculiar to ecclesias- 
tical edifices, is the pointed, or, as it has been impro- 
perly called, " the Gothic."^ I say improperly, because 
it is found in the remains of buildings more ancient 
than any Gothic structure. This being much in the 
shape of the bladder of a fish, was called " V^esica 
Piscis ;" and a knowledge of the art of constructing it 
was acquired but by few, who were hence called 
"Pisciculi."^ They the more readily adopted this 
denomination, because they were followers of the 
Apostles, some of whom were originally Jishermen, and 
heirs of that promise of their Divine Master, " I will 
make you fishers of men." 

This class of architects carried as their tessera, a bone 
shaped in the form of a fish, bearing on it the letters 
ixeyi. When sojourners, and seeking employ, this 
became the token of their profession, and means of 
introduction to others of the craft, to whom they were 
personally strangers. The mode of introduction was, 
first, by producing the tessera, (which, when afterwards 
made of gold or silver, was called " a jewel," and by 
intermutual question and answer, lettering and explain- 
ing the import of each letter ; h^ i,.lllEori ; X,.XPIZTOi ; 
e,-0EOT; T,-TI0I ; l.-EOTHP Jesus Christ ; the Son of 
God; the Saviour.'^ 

Such is the origin of the Royal Arch Chapter of 
Masonry. It obtained the title "Royal," because the 
arch was sanctioned and approved by the emperors and 
kings, who were " the nursing fathers of the church :" 
and the term "Chapter," serves to indicate its ecclesi- 
astical source. 

For my authorities, I direct my reader to the Ap- 

^ See Appendix, Note II. 

^ Optatus, con. Parm. lib. iii., p. 62. CURIL Alex., lib. ix.,, 
in Job. Inst. Theodoret, Ep. 76, p. 994. See also Appendix, 
Note III. 

* See Appendix, Note IV. 


pendix, where they are quoted largely. As my purpose, 
in what is here put together, has merely been to draw 
from ancient church history certain overlooked references, 
as I conceive, to a fraternity once in much repute, 
I have not indulged in any comments, nor pretended to 
undertake any defence of the institution against the 
censures and denunciations gone and going forth against 
it. I am, however, aware that these pages will be 
thought too learned for the information of common 
readers, though I have aimed to make them intelligible, 
particularly by translating the quotations from the 
fathers, and by transferring the literary illustrations to 
the Appendix : but " whoso is wise, he shall understand 
these things ; prudent, and he shall know them ;" — the 
unwise will not be instructed, nor the imprudent led to 
renounce their errors. 


Note I. The contracts for the erection of the vaulting of the 
King's College Chapel, Cambi'idge, are in an account of the Chapel 
of Walden, and in Anecdotes of Paintings by Walpole, vol. i. 
appendix, 3d edition. In Dugdale's Monasticon, vol. iii. p. 162, is 
an agreement between the Commissioners of the Duke of York and 
William Harwood, Freemason, for the rebuilding of the Chapel 
in the College of Fotheringhay, Northamptonshire ; and in AsH- 
MOLE's History of the Garter, p. 120, is an agreement with Hylmer 
and Vertue, Freemasons, for the building of the Choir of St. 
George's Chapel, Windsor. 

The references in this note, though of a later date than the text 
to which they are appended, are referred to as notices of the man- 
ner in which such contracts were made. For more particulars, see 
Observations on Vaults, by Samuel Ware, Esq., communicated to the 
Society of Antiquaries., London; and published in the Archizologia, 
vol. xvii. p. 83. 

Note II. A remarkable remain at St. Jean d'Acre, the ancient 
Ptolemais of Syria, is represented by Le Brun, Voyage au Levant, 
plate 164, p. 313 ; and is also mentioned by Dr. PocOCKE, in his 
Description of the East, vol. ii. part 1. p 53. The building is deci- 
dedly in the Gothic manner, as are also several buildings mentioned 
by him at Cyprus, p. 215, 216 ; and one m that island is repre- 
sented by Casas, Voyage Pittoresque de la Syrie, tom. iii. p 104. 
Other Gothic structures in Egypt and Syi'ia are mentioned by Dr. 
PocoCKE, vol. i. p. 75; vol. ii. part 1. pp. 4. 101, 122. 

Archfsologia, vol. xvii. p. 29. 

Note III. Tertullian says, and after him Optatus, "Nos 
Pisciculi secundam ixd-vs nostrum Jesum Christum in aqua nasci- 
mur ; nee ahter quam in aqua permanendo salvi sumus." Tertul. de 
Bapt. c. 1. See also Bingham, Antiquities of the Christian Church. 
Vol. 1. p. 2. 

See also " Observations on the mystererious figure called Vesi- 
ca PisciS,' in the architecture of the middle ages,'''' by T. Ker- 
Rick, M. a., F. S. a., in the XIX volume of the Archeeologia, No. 
xxxvii. p. 353. 

Note IV. In the sixteenth volume of the Archeeologia, art. xxxiv. 
are " so7ne observations on the Gothic buildings abroad, particularly 
those of Italy ; and on, Gothic architecture in general, by T. Kerrick, 
M. A., F. S. A., Principal Librarian of the University of Cam- 
bridge." In describing the construction of a particular kind of 
arch, which Mr. Kerrick says "was held in peculiar veneration by 
Christians /ro??i very early times," he adds, " it appears to have had a 


mysterious meaning, which I do not i^retend to explaha ; but I 
believe a great deal might be pointed out, as to its influence upon 
the forms of all sorts of things which were intended for sacred uses. 
Possibly it might have some reference to the symboHcal represent- 
ation of Christ under the figure of a fish, the IX&T^, which con- 
tained the mitials of Jrjaovs X^ioros Qtov Tios Zcovr](). And this is 
the more probable, because we are told that it was called ' Vesica 
Piscis.'* But however this may be, and whatever ideas of sanctity 
might be attached to the thmg itself, we may remai'k, that in the 
paintings, f as well as sculptures of the loAver ages, we find it almost 
constantly used to circumscribe the figure of our Saviour, wher- 
ever he is represented as judging the world, and in his glorified 
state, particularly over the dot)rs of Saxon and Norman churches. 
Episcopal and conventual seals, and those of religious societies, 
and of all ecclesiastical officers, were universally of this form, and 
continue to be made so to this day." — p. 313. 

Comp. " Observations on the origin of the j^ointed Arch in Archi- 
tecture," by Sydney Smith, Esq. No. xxxv. vol. xxi. p. 521. "It 
is highly probable," says this author, p. 583, "that the Free- 
masons, whose importance as a corporate body seems to have been 
established by a Papal bull in the early part of the thirteenth cen- 
tury, counted many eastern workmen among their number. Thus 
associated and exclusively devoted to the practice of Masonry, it is 
easy to infer that a rapid improvement both in the style and execu- 
tion of their work would result. Forming a connected and corre- 
sponding society, and roving over the different countries of Europe, 
wherever the munificent piety of those ages promised employment 
to their skill, it is a probable, and even a necessary consequence, 
that improvements, by whomsoever introduced, would quickly 
become common to all ; and to this cause we may refer the simul- 
taneous progress of one style throughout Europe, which forms so 
singular a phenomenon in the history of Architecture." 

In Malden'S Account of Kingh College Chapel, Cambridge, Dr. 
Henry's History, and a Treatise on. Masonry, by William Pres- 
ton, some account of the Freemasons, as relating to the subject of 
building, msiy be found. They appear to have been known in 
England about the beginning of the seventh century. They are 
said to have introduced the art of building in stone ; and that the art 
of constructing walls to resist the thrust of a stone vault, was their 
original mystery. It is more reasonable to suppose that the art of 
building stone walls is as old as stone quarries, than that this society 
is as ancient as Solomon's Temple. About the beginning of the 
fourteenth century, the art " de couper des pierres," was still held a 
secret, and the professors of this mystery were called the "Cotterie." 
Maturin Jousse called his treatise, from this circumstance, " Secret 
d' Architecture." Ware's Memoir in the Archceologia, vol xvii. p. 

Finally, Let me request my learned reader, who would pursue 

* Dureri Instit. Geometricarum, lib. ii. p. 56. He uses it aB a name well 
known, and familial- as that of circle, triangle, &c. " Designa circino invariato 
tres piscium vesicas." 

t See an illustration in King Edgar's book of Grants to Winchester Cathedral, 
engraved by Strutt in his Royal and Ecclesiastical Antiquities. 


this development farther, and into later times, to explore the recon- 
dite pages of the following work : — 

Liber secretorum fidelium crucis super Terree Sanctee recuperahone 
et conservatione. [Printed in the second part of the G-esta Dei of 
BONGARS. This treatise of Marinus Sanutus, a Venetian noble- 
man, was commenced in 1306, and finished in 1321.]