Rules of Masonry, The
DESCRIPTION: "None but an atheist can ever deny But that [masonry] came first from on high." God is "the first Great Master of Masonry." Adam first wore "a fig-leaf [mason's] apron." Solomon's temple conformed "to the just-formed rules of Masonry"
EARLIEST DATE: 1910 (GreigDuncan3)
KEYWORDS: Bible nonballad religious
FOUND IN: Britain(Scotland(Aber))
REFERENCES (2 citations):
Greig #155, pp. 1-2, "Freemason's Song" (1 text)
GreigDuncan3 468, "The Rules of Masonry" (1 text)
cf. "The Building of Solomon's Temple" [Laws Q39] (theme: Building the First Temple)
cf. "The Plumb and Level" (theme: Building the First Temple)
NOTES: It is technically true that the Masons had secrets -- rituals, handshakes, and even a so-called secret code of a very simple sort, based on a tic-tac-toe grid and an x, so that, e.g., the letter "o" was "|-|"; the letter "i" was "|-."; and the letter "w" was "\/" (for details, and clearer drawings -- the above are not quite right -- see Fred B. Wrixon, Codes, Ciphers, & Other Cryptic & Clandestine Communications, Barnes & Noble, 1998). But few of these secrets were really very secret.
I do find the idea of masonry coming "from on high" a little funny. The first real building project described in the Bible is the Tower of Babel (in Genesis 11), and look how *that* turned out.
As for Masons building Solomon's temple (a tale also found in "The Building of Solomon's Temple" [Laws Q39]), we find a description in chapters 5-8 of 1 Kings (and 2 Chronicles chapters 2-6 with a foreshadowing in 1 Chron. 28-29). But it clearly was not built by masons; it was probably designed by Phoenicians, and certainly constructed by slaves. - RBW
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