The True History of Scottish Esoteric Masonry

Eric Wynants

In 1988 the Scottish historian David Stevenson published his research on the late sixteenth-century Scottish origins and subsequent Scottish development of "modern" Freemasonry, which he placed within a European intellectual context of serious interest in the occult sciences. [1]

Working from the surviving Scottish documents of operative and speculative lodges, Stevenson filled the frustrating gaps between early Stuart culture, its links with Scottish Masonry, and its preservation within the Jacobite diaspora after the expulsion of the last Stuart king, James VII and II.

Stevenson's doctoral student Lisa Kahler carried this research further into the early eighteenth century and documented the inaccuracies and distortions of the "orthodox" English version of Masonic history, which served Hanoverian-Whig political purposes. [2]

More importantly for my own research, this revisionist history enabled me to trace the eighteenth century ramifications of Écossais Masonry back to their early roots in Jewish and Scottish architectural history.

Stevenson's illuminating discussions of the role of the Art of Memory — a mnemonic technique of architectural visualization — in the training of operative masons in Scotland provided a missing link to the similar art of visualization practiced by heterodox Hebraic mystics in the Jewish diaspora.[3]

It thus became possible to utilize objective scholarly accounts of ancient and medieval Jewish building practices, guild organization, and stone-technology to build a real world base for the imaginative flights of visionary Temple-building which appear in Jewish mystical literature. [4]

Reinforced by Elliot Wolfson's studies of the persistence of "iconic representation and visualization" in officially anti-iconic Judaism, it is possible to connect the previously perplexing role of Cabalism in Freemasonry to the Whig-Newtonian-Hanoverian culture that allegedly created "modern" Freemasonry. [5]

Pre-modern Scotland provided a uniquely "Judaized" culture for the preservation of architectural and Solomonic traditions that were largely suppressed or ignored in other Western countries, especially in Scotland's southern neighbor and traditional enemy, England.

The work of Arthur Williamson on the strange history of the "Judeo Scots" sheds light on this peculiarly Hebraic national self-image that made Scotland — a land with no public Jewish community — a major repository of rare Jewish traditions. [6]

Moreover, an accident of geological history — the ready availability of "hewable" stone for monumental architecture in ancient Israel and medieval Scotland — provided an unusually technological base for similarities of development in Jewish and Scottish national myths.

According to Stevenson, Masonic history has been generally led astray by the prevailing misconception that the emergence of Freemasonry took place in England — "a belief maintained in the face of the overwhelming preponderance of Scottish documentary evidence relating to the process, evidence which is often simultaneously explained away ... and then used in an English context to make up for the lack of English evidence." [7]

Because the occultist systems of Masonry that survived underground in post-Stuart Britain and that flourished in eighteenth-century Europe developed out of the architectural, scientific, religious, and political policies of the Scottish-descended Stuart kings of Britain, it is necessary to examine those elements of early Stuart culture which were preserved within the secret enclaves of Écossaises lodges. The vigorous revisionism currently undertaken by historians of sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Scotland and England makes possible a new factual context, which sheds light on the deliberately secret history of Stuart Freemasonry. [8]

With the expulsion of James VII and II from the British throne in 1688, political exiles carried Masonic traditions throughout the "Jacobite" diaspora, where they attracted a startling variety of monarchs, philosophers, scientists, and artists to their supposedly defeated creed and culture. The Hermetic-Cabalistic masques of the Stuart court, which were often designed and constructed by Masons, disappeared from Britain after the "Glorious Revolution," but they eventually reappeared in the elaborately theatrical ceremonies developed by Jacobite exiles and their local supporters in Écossaises lodges. [9]

The revival of the Masonic "masque" in late nineteenth-century Scottish Rite lodges in the United States is revealed in the recently published paintings and photographs of the scenic designs, theatrical techniques, and illusionistic effects which recreated the Solomonic magnificence and mystical radiance of the early Stuart performances. [10]

With the accession of the Elector of Hanover as King George I of England in 1714, Masonic supporters of the Stuarts mounted a decades long, clandestine campaign to regain the British throne.

In 1717 a rival Hanoverian system of Masonry was established, which aimed to suppress and defeat that campaign. When the Hanoverian victors in England — and their descendants among Whig historians — wrote the histories of this great cultural and political rivalry, they created their own myth of Protestant progress and toleration, which almost obliterated the Celtic-Catholic-Jewish elements in the opposition's struggle and which ignored the survival of those elements in an international Jacobite culture.

However, the investigations of academic Jacobite studies — led by Eveline Cruickshanks, Paul Nionod, Frank McLynn, Edward Corp, Bruce Lenman, and Murray Pittock — overturns much of the conventional wisdom about the Whig-Newtonian-Hanoverian culture that allegedly created "modern" Freemasonry."

The Invention of The Ancients / Perennial Philosophy

The today untenable idea of an Ancient Wisdom Tradition that Theosophists and Esotericists are referring to, had its roots in the Renaissance where the Cabalah as "the oral Torah," was considered the Ancient Wisdom Teaching.

Renaissance philosophers (deemed "science") taught the Cabalah contained the secret teachings of Moses, an oral supplement to Scripture, making it possible to accurately interpret the written Word of the Bible. (Pico della Mirandola "On the Dignity of Man" p. 29)

In other words the Renaissance philosopher/scientists worked within a view of history in which their own tradition was represented as an ancient philosophy, contemporary with Moses, only to have this legend gradually undermined by scholarly studies, the Enlightenment rejected this old order.

Renaissance Neo-Platonist used the "prisca theologia" (ancient wisdom tradition) theory to support their claim that Platonism was reconcilable with Christian doctrines.

The notion of a "perennial philosophy," a wisdom which the ancient sages had once been in possession of but since then had been lost to mankind, is a common theme in Renaissance scholarship. The Calvinist scholar Michel Servet summarized it in this paragraph:

"This was from the beginning of the world the received doctrine about the Wisdom of God, published in the Holy Scriptures, and taught to the Greeks by the Chaldeans and Egyptians from the tradition of their ancestors ... Zoroaster and Trismegistus taught it, from whom, chiefly from Trismegistus, all the Greeks learnt it, from Orpheus to Plato."

(As quoted and translated in Walker, "The Prisca Theologia in France", p. 249.)

High Degree Masonry and Stuart Politics

Scottish Masonry had less to do with "Knights Templar" from the middle ages as is often claimed in fringe cottage-industry history books, but rather with an interest in the Cabalah, and later for a period of time, in the restoration of the Stuart Monarchy.

Elias Ashmole and John Evelyn were both suspected by Parliament of maintaining contact with royalists abroad, and they may have facilitated communications with Moray's Scottish Masonic network. When Sir Robert Bruce left the company of Moray and Alexander Bruce in Holland and returned to England, he called on Ashmole and Evelyn. Evelyn also received a visit from the Marquis of Argyll, Lord Lothian, and "some other Scotch noblemen, all strangers to me". At this time, Moray believed that Argyll would support the royalist cause, which may explain Evelyn's growing intimacy with him. Though Lothian had developed friendly relations with some of Cromwell's officers in Scotland, his motivation was the alleviation of his exiled father's poverty. Despite some royalists' suspicions, Moray maintained his trust in Lothian's essential loyalty.

Evelyn also communicated with Sir John Denham, who had returned to London in late 1653, where his presence was noted by Hartlib, who described him as "a Mighty ingenious man for all manner of waterworks and other ingenuities" and "a great mechanical traveller." [11]

It was perhaps these interests and skills that led to his alleged association with Masonry and to his later friendship with Moray. In 1655 Denham was arrested as a royalist plotter, but two years later he was privy to the plans of Buckingham to return to England, "upon some design, for a rising in the city or against the Protector's person". (J. Denham "Poetical Works" p. 16)

The royalists hoped to win Sir Thomas Fairfax to their cause, and Buckingham succeeded in marrying his daughter. As noted earlier, Buckingham was also named as a Mason, probably initiated during his service in Scotland. Throughout the Interregnum, Evelyn carried on a ciphered correspondence with the exiles, while Ashmole was kept under surveillance. In August 1659 Ashmole recorded that "My Study was broken open by the Soldiers, upon pretence of searching for the King, but I lost nothing out of it. [12]

Moray's other Masonic contact in England was Lauderdale, his "friend at Windsor," who sent word to him about the work of Dr. Brian Walton on the English Polyglot Bible (1654-57), which stimulated a revival of interest in Villalpando's interpretations of the Temple. [13]

Walton's Polyglot featured an elaborate architectural engraving on the frontispiece, designed by John Webb, as well as complex depictions of Jewish architecture by N. Venscelas Hollar. That Moray wanted to see this London publication on the restored Temple of Jerusalem points to the cross-channel links established in the late 1650s which laid the Masonic groundwork for the king's restoration. That these links also included a Swedish dimension would become important to the international spread of Stuart-style Freemasonry in the eighteenth-century.

Since Alexander Bruce's arrival in Bremen, Moray had solicited news about the Swedes and Danes, whom the royalists assiduously courted. On 29 April 1658 Moray informed Bruce that he was anxiously awaiting the arrival of Bellenden, whose effort to gain Swedish support now depended on the many Scottish residents in Gothenburg. [14]

He also recalled his earlier friendship with a Swedish military officer, whose name he uncertainly spelled as Col. Owagh Clough or Clook, and who was an expert on fortifications. "Clook" was a fellow prisoner at Ingolstach, at the time of Moray's correspondence with Kircher, and the two spent much time in discussions of their mutual interests. Moray would later maintain contact with Swedish scientists.

Thus, it is possible that he was privy to the clandestine establishment of a Masonic lodge, named "St. Magnus," in Gothenburg, which was chartered from Edinburgh.

The lodge is mentioned in Johan Starck, Apologie de Franc-Maçons (Philadelphie. 1779) p. 68: also see Gotthold Ephraim Lessing. Lessing's Masonic Dialogues (1778), trans. A. Cohen. London. 1927, p.99-100. Both Starck and Lessing attended Swedish Rite lodges in Germany.

From 1656 on, there were rumors that General Monk, who was currently employing the Swedish Freemason Tessin on fortification work at Leith, was leaning towards the royalist cause. [15]

Christina, who had earlier recruited members of the Tessin family to Swedish service, now used her influence with Swedes, Spaniards, Germans, and Jews to build support for Charles. [16]

While this multi-national, Masonic network carried out its clandestine collaboration, an additional secret network was utilized for the restoration effort. Since January 1654 the younger sons of old royalist families in England had organized a resistance movement known as "The Sealed Knot." Collaborating with its agents were the Scottish royalists Lauderdale, from his prison cell, and Elizabeth Murray, daughter of the exiled William Murray. Earl of Dysart. Elizabeth exploited her friendship with Cromwell's wife to prevent the execution of Lauderdale and to arrange his transfer to a less onerous prison in Windsor Castle. [17]

Now granted considerable freedom, Lauderdale added to his great library and continued his investigations of alchemical, architectural, and mathematical lore. Like Moray, Lauderdale studied Druslus, Scaliger, Amama, Kircher, and Alsted, and he acquired Rosicrucian and Fluddian works.[18]

Considered a "master of Hebrew," he gathered rare works on the Jewish traditions, and he apparently developed his "extraordinary memory" through study of his Lullist treatises. In line with Charles II's policy of bringing together royalists of different religious faiths, Lauderdale established communications with the Puritan Richard Baxter and other advocates of religious pacification.

The king's ecumenical agenda was not shared by his English advisor Edward Hyde, who was distrusted by Scottish Presbyterians and British Catholics. Contemptuous of Balcarres and Dysart and suspicious of Moray, Hyde instigated "false accusations" and "unjust persecution" of their Scottish party. [19]

In 1655 the Scots and Catholics protested to Charles II that Hyde subverted their restorationist efforts. Dr. Alexander Fraser, the king's Scottish physician, joined with Balcarres and "other Scots at court" to draw up a petition to the king that the Scottish Presbyterians could provide valuable advice and services but "were discouraged and hindered" by Hyde, who was "an old known and declared enemy to their party; in whom they could repose no trust." [20]

They urged that Hyde be removed from the council or "at least not be suffered to be privy to anything that should be proposed by them." Fraser had accompanied Charles II to Scotland, where he carried out important intelligence and military operations, and he enjoyed the full confidence of the king and the Scottish "Masonic" party. His distrust of Hyde was shared by Dr. Massonet, who accused Hyde of disloyalty and collusion with Cromwell. From now on, the separation of Scottish from English plotting would be reflected in the activities of Scottish Masons and English "Knotters."

Despite the Anglo-Scottish rivalries, the energetic Elizabeth Murray tried to provide a link between the two factions. When William Murray died in December 1655, Elizabeth assumed his title and became the Countess of Dysart. Gilbert Burnet, a later protege of Moray, noted that the beautiful Lady Dysart had "a wonderful quickness of apprehension" and had studied divinity, history, philosophy, and mathematics. [21]

Using the cover of arranging her family's business affairs in Belgium, she often travelled to the Continent with messages from Lauderdale to Moray, her late father's cousin and confidante. Earlier, Dysart had hoped his daughter would marry Moray, but now the two maintained a "true friendship." Learned in the occult sciences and gifted with second sight, she collaborated with Moray on the production of invisible inks and other chemical services to the king's cause. Jane Clark argues that the Dysarts were undoubtedly Masons and that Elizabeth utilized Masonic symbols and techniques of communication to transmit her messages to royalists abroad. [22]

With considerable courage and defiant insouciance, she also carried out dangerous missions for the Sealed Knot, while she cultivated friendships with Cromwell's wife and intimates.

In March 1657 Cromwell received reports that Balcarres, from his base in Holland, was holding "a secret intelligence" with Monk; even worse, Balcarres was spreading rumors that "Generall Monk is revolted" in order to build support for the royalists' "intended insurrection." [23]

Though Monk defended himself to Cromwell and continued to enforce the military occupation in Scotland, his letters suggest some ambivalence in his position. In September he reported from Dalkeith that the Scottish ministers "begin to pray again for Charles Stuart, so there may be a new project." He then added off-handedly that he had arrested "some straggling fellows come over lately, the most of them from the King of Sweden's army." In May Cromwell's spies reported that Colonel Alexander Hamilton, kinsman of Moray's late comrade, "brought 64 Scottish soldiers from the Swedish army to Ostend." [24] Were these recruits members of the lodge at Gothenburg and ready to join their brethren in Holland and Scotland?

A rare surviving masonic document, composed at Perth in December 1658, suggests that there was a renewal of royalist commitment among local masons. John Mylne, who had cooperated with Monk in the building of fortifications and served with the Scottish commissioners to Cromwell, subsequently resigned all share in the conduct of public affairs. However, he retained the mastership of the "Ancient Lodge of Scone and Perth" until shortly before his death in late 1657. Though it is unknown whether Mylne was the inspiration for the proud assertions made in the 1658 document, it is clear that the Perth masons were determined to reclaim their ancient independence and royal patronage. Thus, on 24 December they issued a new "Contract by the Master Masons and fellow-craftsmen ... on the decease of John Mylne, Master Mason and Master of the said Lodge":

"That as formerly we and predecessors have and had from the temple of temples building on this earth one uniform community and union throughout the whole world from which temple proceeded one in Kilwinning in this our nation of Scotland and from that of Kilwinning many more within this kingdom of which there proceeded the Abbey and Lodge of Scone, built by men of art and architecture where they placed that lodge as the second lodge within this nation, which is now past memory of many generations, and was upheld by the Kings of Scotland ... the said Masters, Freemen, and Fellow Crafts, inhabitants within the said Burgh of Perth, were always able within themselves to maintain their first liberties, and are yet willing to do the same as the Masters, Freemen, or Fellow Crafts did formerly (whose names we know not) — But to our record and knowledge of our predecessors there came one from the North country named John Mylne, a mason, a man well experted in his calling, who entered himself both Freeman and Burgess of this Burgh, who in process of time by reason of his skill and art was preferred to be the King's Majesty's Master Mason and Master of the said Lodge at Scone, and his son John Mylne being after his father's decease preferred to the said office, and Master of the said Lodge, in the reign of His Majesty James the Sixth of blessed memory, who by the said second John Mylne was by the King's own desire entered Freeman, Alason, and Fellow Craft, and during all his lifetime he maintained the same as one member of the Lodge of Scone — so that this Lodge is the most famous Lodge (if well ordered) within this kingdom — of which name of Mylne there had continued several generations of Master Masons to his Majesties the Kings of Scotland." [25]

The rest of the document dealt with the choosing of a new master and warden for the lodge and instructions about the traditional duties (including the gift of gloves) incumbent upon the members. That John Mylne fils was not elected to fill his father's role was probably due to his residence in Edinburgh, where he was employed on various architectural projects (such as erecting a great vertical sundial). Importantly, the younger Mylne also represented the City at the Convention of Royal Burghs in 1655-59, when he gained the acquaintance of General Monk.

All the royalist plans were thrown into full gear when news arrived on the Continent of the death of Oliver Cromwell in September 1658. When the inept Richard Cromwell assumed the Protectorship, the royalists increased their overtures to Monk in Scotland. On 30 September a Cromwellian officer in Leith wrote to Thurloe that Scottish preachers were now using mystical language, while they pray for the deliverance of the exiles and captives to be delivered from the yoke of Pharaoh and out of Egypt: "Thus they speake, but so ambiguously that they can evade, if questioned; yet see plainly that the whole people knowes their meaning." [26]

The use of mystical Hebraic terminology harked back to the days of the first Covenant and its underlying Masonic organization. Moreover, many Scottish masons were currently employed on the fortifications at Leith, which were directed by the Swedish architect Tessin and his commander Monk. Tessin had earlier been initiated in the Edinburgh Lodge, which was directed by John Mylne.

Monk had no respect for Richard Cromwell, and he sensed that the political situation would become increasingly volatile. Thus, he began the systematic reversal of the late Protector's policies in Scotland. While he replaced Englishmen with Scots on the courts of justice and Exchequer, he consolidated his own power and made his rule more acceptable to the subjects of the northern kingdom. [27]

Unlike Oliver Cromwell, who despised the Scots, Monk enjoyed the company of local nobles, soldiers, and craftsmen. During his travels to all parts of the kingdom, he had developed an intelligence network that kept him abreast of the growing royalist sentiments of all segments of the population. More significantly, he allegedly became a Freemason and thus privy to the communication networks, oaths of secrecy, and bonds of loyalty between the brethren. According to a report made in 1741 by the exiled Jacobite Mason Andrew Michael Ramsay, certain royalist Masons knew of Monk's affiliation and sought to attract him to their cause.

A. F. von Busching in "Beiträge" VI, 329, noted that when Ramsay lectured in the lodges, he did not mention Monk's Masonic strategy for the Restoration because he did not want to arouse suspicions that the Masons in France where active in affairs of state. See also Andre Kervella, La Maçonnerie Écossaise dans la France de l'Ancient Régime Paris, 1999, 208.

That Ramsay revealed this political secret to Count Carl Gustaf Tessin, a Swedish kinsman of Monk's architect, gives it a certain piquancy.

Though Ramsay's account has been ignored by English historians of the Restoration, there is enough evidence for Monk's Masonic contacts to give it credibility. Shortly after Cromwell's death, a young Scottish architect — William Bruce of Kinross — approached Monk to solicit his support for a Stuart restoration. Fenwick suggests that Bruce participated in the construction of Monk's citadels at Aire and Leith, which provided him contact with Tessin and Mylne, who directed the masons at those projects. [28]

Bruce would later become Charles II's Surveyor of Works in Edinburgh and, according to Anderson, the Grand Master of Scottish Freemasonry. [29]

During the Interregnum, he reportedly pursued his architectural studies in France and Holland. A friend of Moray and cousin of Alexander Bruce, he provided a link between their Masonic networks in Europe and Scotland.

Moray later collaborated with Sir William Bruce on architectural projects; see Henry M. Paton, "Letters from John, Second Earl of Lauderdale, to John, Second Earl of Tweeddale, and Others," in Miscellany of the Scottish Historical Society, VI 1939, 233.

Another cousin of William Bruce, the Countess of Dysart, provided communication between the exiled Masons and the Sealed Knot, and William visited her in London. From his later friendship with Lauderdale, it seems that William also contacted the latter during his imprisonment at Windsor. Through her contacts with Cromwell's inner circle, Lady Dysart may have learned that parliamentary spies had penetrated the "Sealed Knot" and had suborned its chief, Sir Richard Willis, who continued to correspond with Hyde and Nicholas while receiving Cromwellian bribes.

According to Burnet, who probably received the information from Moray or the Bruces, "Thus Cromwell had all the king's party in a net. He let them dance in it at his pleasure; and upon occasion clapt them up for a short while." [30]

"There is no department of knowledge that gives us more certainty of Christ‘s divinity than magic and cabala," wrote Giovanni Pico della Mirandola, the translator of the so called writings of "Hermes" in 1486.

The ritualized unification of the Master's Word drew on Christian Cabalistic lore, in which the unification of the letters of the Tetragrammaton was predicated on and facilitated by some form of visualization of these letters within the imagination.

Though the seventeenth-century Masons externalized the internal process into ritual gestures and postures, they still re-enacted the Christian Cabalistic belief that "Whoever has knowledge it as if the Temple were built in his life," because "such a person knows how to unify the unique name and it is as if he built the palace above.

But during the re-creation of Scottish Masonry at the courts of the exiled Stuart King in France, the search for "the lost word" signified "the royal word" given by Charles II that he would reclaim the throne; the "son of the widow" pointed to Charles II as son of Henrietta Maria. To increase security, these royalist symbols were changed to the "signs of the Rose-Cross Masons."

Initiates of the eighteenth-century Clermont Rite preserved a tradition that David Ramsay was succeeded as head of the order in 1659 by Charles II, with "Eduard Frazer" serving as his "Vikar." [31] Baron von Starck, the German source for these early Scottish-Templar Masons, was often inaccurate or confused about their forenames and spellings, and "Eduard" was probably Dr. Alexander Fraser, who had earlier distanced Scottish Presbyterian plotting from Hyde's English agenda. Since 1655 Fraser had worked as a confidential agent for Lauderdale and Moray. Starck claimed that Fraser's successors included William Bruce (1679-86) and Andrew Michael Ramsay (1708-14). Whether these Rosicrucian-Templar Restoration traditions were developed in the 1650s or after the 1688 fall of the Stuart dynasty remains an historical puzzle. But some pieces of that puzzle can be verified by historical documents.

Sir Robert Moray's letters provide a unique insight into the intellectual and spiritual world of an active Freemason in the 1650s. They also make clear that many "modern" trends of speculative Masonry were already emerging among the royalist exiles on the Continent. Moreover, Moray may have shared his Masonic interests with his "comrade" and fellow-lodger, the French physician Massonet, and the French military officers, with whom he regularly dined and socialized. (Kincardine MS, 5049 p.24)

Peter Massenet was created an M.D. by Charles I in 1646, served as writing instructor to the princes Charles and James, and then fought for Charles II in England.

While in exile, he became the confidential friend of Balcarres and Moray. (E. Nicholas, Nicholas Paper, III, p.168.)

French historians refer to a murky tradition of Stuart-French Masonic interchange during the Interregnum, and Massonet may have been privy to Moray's Masonic strategies as well as his Hermetic experiments.

Though Moray claimed to live as a hermit in Maastricht, he continued to serve as a political intelligencer and contact person for the international royalist network. Thus, by examining that network in the context of possible Masonic associations, we can evaluate the plausibility of eighteenth-century claims about Masonic contributions to the Stuart restoration.

Unfortunately, there is a dearth of information on Freemasonry in England during the Interregnum, despite speculation about the possible Masonic activities of Ashmole and Thomas Vaughan. Fragments of evidence do suggest, however, that Moray and Lauderdale could have called upon a few royalist Masons in London. Though Ashmole did not record any further Masonic participation until 1682, he became friendly with John Evelyn who was currently investigating operative masonry. Both men travelled through England to inspect the condition of religious and royal architecture. [32]

They also helped William Dugdale's research for his royalist architectural treatise, The History of St. Paul's Cathedral (1658). Evelyn began a manuscript account of "Trades: Secrets and Receipts Mechanical as they come casually to hand," for which he tried to investigate the craft of masonry. [33]

Planning to fill over six hundred pages, Evelyn listed alphabetically the technical subjects he would cover. Among the few he actually recorded was section M on the duties and techniques of "the Free-Mason," which revealed his contact with operative masons who shared a few of their secrets. Evelyn noted the intellectual and manual challenges required in their work, and he included the architect-engineer under L for "Liberal Arts," thus giving him gentleman status. However, these were not propitious years for the masons, for their trade suffered from Cromwellian iconoclasm. Evelyn's friend Christopher Wren later recalled that "there were no masons in London when he was a young man" (i.e., during the Interregnum). [34] Though it is unclear whether Wren meant operative masons or speculative Freemasons, Evelyn found the former disappointingly uncooperative. He ultimately confessed that the necessity "of conversing with mechanical capricious persons" proved too unpleasant to him.

After Cromwell's death, his successors were worried by rumors of new link-ups between royalists in Scotland, England, and Holland. Having penetrated the "Knot," they may have suspected a Masonic element in the plotting. A rare surviving Masonic manuscript, dated 1659, suggests that parliamentary intelligencers were investigating Masonry in Britain. The manuscript "Narrative of the Free Masons Word and Signs" was a "copia vera" drafted by Thomas Martin, whose identity is otherwise unknown. [35]

It provided an account, hostile in tone and apparently made by a spy, of contemporary lodge practices. In passages that would have interested suspicious government agents, Martin described in detail the recognition signs used by Masons — i.e., the signs, postures, movement of hat, square paper, crooked pin, etc., used to identify the "free" worker to other operative masons, who were bound by similar oaths. He pointed out that these techniques allowed them to secretly exchange money. Other more amusing signs were blowing the nose in a handkerchief, which is then held straight out and shaken; knocking at any door with two little knocks and then a big one; saying "Star the Guile" when the glass goes around too slowly, etc.

Martin expressed his scorn for the Masons' claim to international brotherhood:

To Discourse a Mason in France, Spain, or Turkey (say they) the sign is to kneel down on his left knee and hold up his right hand to the Sun and the Outlandish Brother will presently take him up, but believe me if they go on their knees on that account they may remain there or any persons observe their Signs as long as the Jews will remain on their Beliefs, to receive their wish'd for Messiah from the East.

With Charles II currently trying to forge a unified front out of French, Spanish, and Jewish (Jews from Turkish territories?) supporters, Martin's criticism was perhaps relevant to rumors of international Masonic cooperation.

Martin then announced, "Here followeth their private Discourse by Way of Question and Answer," in which the esoteric and essentially Jewish traditions were obliquely expressed. To the catechistical questioner, the initiate answers that a "Just and perfect Lodge is ... two prentices, two fellow-crafts, and one Master on the highest hill or lowest Valley in the World without the crow of a Cock or the bark of a Dog." To the question, "from whence do you derive your principles," the initiate answers "From a greater than you." "Who is he on Earth that is greater than a free Mason" provokes the response, "He that carried to the highest pinnacle of the Temple of Jerusalem." Martin noted that "In some places they Discourse as followeth": "Where did they first call their Lodge? As the Holy Chappel of St. John." This allusion to the Knights of St. John of the Hospital suggests a chivalric theme in certain lodges — a point later reinforced by Swift's reference to "Lodges" of the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem.

Universal Brotherhood or Tyranny

From the time of Charles II's oral commitments to the Jews at the Restoration, his philo-Semitic policies over the next twenty-five years fueled a secretive tradition of Jewish-Masonic collaboration that emerged dramatically in the next century. Moreover, this tradition would be strongest in the Rosicrucian degrees of Écossais rites developed by exiled supporters of the Stuart dynasty. Because this linkage of Jews and Freemasons would prove so controversial and volatile, it is important to examine the Stuart context that fueled the rumors and the reality. Though the question of Stuart sympathy for Catholicism was the burning public issue of the latter part of Charles II's reign, it was intrinsically linked with less known but broader issues of tolerance that would eventually define the "modern" Masonic theme of universal brotherhood. In the Stuart Temple of Wisdom, not only Protestants and Catholics but Jews and Moslems would be welcomed as comrades in chivalric fraternity.

In Tangier, the projected gateway to the Levant, the governors' cooperation with Jewish interpreters was crucial to completion of the great Mole and stone forts, projects of continuing interest to Moray and Wren. To facilitate the Barbados trade in which Davidson, Lauderdale, and other Scots were heavily invested, the king granted full privileges to their Jewish agents. [36]

In January 1663 Charles and his foreign secretary Arlington established a new precedent by allowing a naturalized Jew from Barbados, the diamond merchant Da Vega, to become a Freeman of a Company in London. [37]

Though Charles still could not count on parliamentary support, he communicated to various Portuguese Jews in April that "he was resolved to grant" permission to a large number of Marranos to immigrate to England. [38]

When Jacob Abendana dedicated Halevi's Kuzari to Davidson, the royalist panegyric smoothed the way for his brother Isaac Abendana to bring copies of the work to England and to establish himself as a Hebrew teacher at Cambridge in 1663. [39]

The king's policy also opened the doors for renewed Hebrew studies in Scotland, where it was well-known that Lauderdale was an expert in the language. One Jew travelled to Scotland, where he instructed Patrick Gordon, who became Professor of Hebrew at King's College, Aberdeen. [40]

At St. Andrews the king donated Pounds 50 for a Professor of Hebrew, while at Edinburgh a converted Jew was invited to teach Jewish language and history. [41]

Rabbi Jacob Sasportas wrote from London to a friend in Rotterdam:

We live at a time in which God has seen fit greatly to ameliorate the condition of his people, bringing them forth from the general conchnon of serfdom into freedom ... specifically, in that we are free to practise our own true religion ... a written statement was issued from him [Charles II], duly signed affirming that no untoward measures had been or would be initiated against us, and that they should not look towards any protector other than his Majesty; during the continuance of whose lifetime they need feel no trepidation because of any sect that might oppose them, inasmuch as he himself would be their advocate and assist them with all his power. [42]

Shane observes that it was the king's answer "which established the right of the Jews to re-settle in England rather than the non-committal reply which Cromwell had earlier given to the petition of Menasseh ben Israel." [43]

Arlington, whom Anderson identified as a Freemason, would later be involved with Rabbi Leon's visit to London.

Encouraged by the king's policy, the London Jews began raising funds for the enlargement of their synagogue. They probably learned from their Dutch brothers that Leon's architectural theories received international exposure and critical praise, when Johan Saubert published an expanded Latin version of the rabbi's treatise, De Templo Hierosolymitano (1665).

The translation was printed at the request of Duke Augustus of Brunswick, and Saubert included Leon's Hebrew song of praise for Augustus. When the book first appeared, the latter's brother Duke Frederick of Brunswick visited the Royal Society on 25 February 1665. [44]

Thus, Wren and the Fellows could have learned about the architectural explications and designs that Leon contributed to the edition. Moray, especially, would have been interested in Kircher's letter to Saubert, in which his "epistolar correspondent" praised Leon's treatise. On 31 October 1664 Kircher sent Saubert his critical evaluation, which the latter published in the edition:

I also read with utmost enthusiasm your book about the Temple of Solomon, which your zeal for the public good and your concern for illumination ensured the publication at your own personal expense. It is a quite exceptional work and one which the literary world could not but value for its exposition of the minutiae. [45]

Saubert included a portrait of Leon, placed above his models of the Tabernacle and Temple, and an admiring biography, which recognized his importance as a Jewish savant. He also noted Leon's disagreement with Villalpando's explications of Jewish architecture, which the large fold-out engravings of Leon's designs demonstrated. Drawing purely on Jewish sources, including the "Kabbalistas," Leon made clear that he hoped for an actual rebuilding of the Temple and thus included practical advice relevant to operative masons involved in synagogue and church construction. He described the columns of Jachin and Boaz, the sculptured Cherubim, and the lapis fondationis — all subjects of interest to Jewish and Christian builders in London.

With Jews in Britain and its colonies, as well as their co-religionists on the Continent, now perceiving Charles II as their protector, the earlier Stuart support for Leon's architectural endeavors possibly provoked a Hebraic Masonic tribute.

In a manuscript entitled "The History of Masonry," written by Thomas Treloar in 1665, there is a striking merger of Scottish Masonic tradition and Hebrew royalist panegyric. An inscription on the manuscript reads: "History and Charges of Masonry, Copied by me Jon Raymond MDCCV."[46]

In the surviving fragment, there are inscriptions in Hebrew lettering which reinforce the stress of Jewish and Solomonic traditions in the restored fraternity. The text begins with the Hebrew inscription, "in the beginning God created the heaven and earth," and then recounts the story of Hiram the architect.

The text then relates a highly Judaised version of the Old Charges, adding peculiar details and claiming Jewish sources for the discoveries of Euclid and Pythagoras. McLeod observes that in standard English texts of the Old Charges, Solomon's Temple is simply one episode of many and not the most important at that:

Euclid and Edwin both claim considerably more space. But for Jon Raymond [and Treloar] Solomon is at centre stage right from the preliminary verses. He includes an attestation, "All may witness my seal and hand," with the "signature" of "Solomon the King" (in Hebrew letters and in transliterated Hebrew) and "Solomon's Seal," the hexalpha within a circle. He adduces the Tabernacle of Moses as a prototype of the Temple. He describes the artificer of the Temple in these terms: "And Hiram the Tyrian widow's son was sent to King Solomon by Hiram the King of Tyre. And he was a cunning workman in brass and purple and all medals." [47]

McLeod expresses puzzlement at this "remarkable" early naming of the architect as Hiram, but Stevenson suggests that the Hiramic legend in Scottish Freemasonry was already present in William Schaw's time. Thus, "the mental lodge" or "memory temple" described in late seventeenth-century catechisms contained the grave of Hiram, "the greatest of all architects." Through certain Cabalistic and necromantic rituals, the initiate could discover and rejuvenate Hiram. The emphasis on his role as the "widow's son" pointed to Charles II's role as Henrietta Maria's son — a Stuart reference that would take on more poignant significance for Jacobite exiles in the next century. [48]

Even more striking in the Treloar MS. were the unique references to certain sixteenth- and seventeenth-century monarchs claimed as rulers of "the whole Craft":

And yet another Henry did rule over ye whole Craft even ye seventh of that name.
And after many days Charles did reign in ye land and lo his blood was spilled upon ye earth even by ye traitor Cromwell.
Behold now ye return of pleasant for doth not ye Son of ye blessed Martyr rule over ye whole land.
Long may he reign in ye land and govern ye Craft.
Is it not written ye shall not hurt ye Lords anointed.

The elimination of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I from Masonic history should not surprise, for they were considered enemies of ecclesiastical and royalist building projects. But the omission of James VI and I possibly indicates that James was not recognised as "governor" over English Masons, despite his initiation in Scotland. Or perhaps Treloar did not believe that true "Hiramic" Freemasonry really existed in England until the restoration of Charles II.

The Treloar MS. concludes its powerful royalist statement with an inscription in Hebrew, "Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing?" This quotation from Psalm 2 was often applied to the radical Protestants of the Interregnum, and the rebellious heathen were subsequently admonished to serve the Lord's anointed king. In the year when the manuscript was written, the Jewish community in London must have worried that religious sectarians in Britain were linking their cause to Jewish millenarian developments in the Middle Last. Reports of the messianic claims of Sabbatai Zevi, a Cabalistic prophet in Smyrna, stimulated waves of enthusiasm among many Jews on the Continent.

Queen Christina became so fascinated by Sabbatai's claims that she almost became a disciple. In Hamburg she danced in the streets with her Jewish friends in anticipation of the apocalyptic moment. [49]

In London Oldenburg eagerly sought news about the movement from the alchemist Borri, the chiliast Serrarius, and the philosopher Spinoza, which revived his millenarial hopes — and made him vulnerable to royalist suspicions of sedition. [50]

In November 1665 Robert Boulter published in London a Sabbatian message to serve the agenda of radical dissidents, who opposed Charles II's policy of toleration. He claimed that he received a letter from Aberdeen which described the arrival on the Scottish coast of a mysterious ship, loaded with Hebrew-speaking Jews who were gathering their brethren from all over the world to return to Jerusalem. [51]

The Sabbatians boldly proclaimed on their satin sails, "THESE ARE THE TEN TRIBES OF ISRAEL," who would give liberty of conscience to all (except the Turks). It is unclear whether Boulter believed there were actual Jews living in Scotland, or whether he hoped to insult the Scots and their Stuart king by implying that they were Jewish.

Meanwhile in Amsterdam, some Jewish admirers of Sabbatai Zevi hoped that the English king would assist them, despite the current state of war between England and Holland which had spread to the Mediterranean.

But when Sabbatai Zevi — under threat of death — apostasized to Islam, the royalists in Britain were relieved that the potentially incendiary movement fizzled out. There is little evidence that Jews in London supported the campaign, which threatened to undermine their delicate position under the king's protection.[52]

Oldenburg, however, continued to correspond about the millenarian implications of the affair, and his indiscrete comments to friends in Holland during the Anglo-Dutch war placed him under government suspicion. Letters from the radical Serrarius were impounded, and an order for Oldenburg's arrest was issued in summer 1667.[53]

Evelyn noted that Oldenburg was held a close prisoner in the Tower "for having been suspected to write Intelligence, etc."[54]

Because Evelyn appreciated the secretary's work for the Royal Society, he got permission from Arlington to visit Oldenburg in the Tower, and he came away confident that he was innocent of seditious intent. However, Oldenburg's interest in Sabbatian millenarianism was still considered risky, and he was not released until a month after the signing of the Treaty of Breda. [55]

The perceived linkage between Sabbatians and Protestant subversives possibly spurred Solomon Franco to publish a royalist panegyric, Truth Springing Out of the Earth, which he dedicated to Charles II on 2 July 1668.

As Hebrew instructor of Ashmole, Franco may have learned that Ashmole's friend Evelyn was now undertaking a study of Sabbatai Zevi and similar radical enthusiasts. In his pamphlet, Franco announced his conversion to the Church of England, which he credited to the miraculous nature of Charles II's restoration and to the arguments of Christian friends that the Cabala proved that Jesus was the Messiah. He stressed that the ancient Jews were devoted to monarchy and that rebels against the king were punished with death. Franco was also determined to defend Cabalistic traditions against critics like Samuel Parker, who two years earlier had ridiculed Rosicrucian exponents of Cabala.

Perhaps Franco also hoped to forestall Evelyn's potential criticism of Sabbatai Zevi's Cabalistic pretensions. Thus, he gave detailed expositions of Cabalistic traditions of the male and female Cherubim, the role of the Shekinah in reception of divine influx, the architecture of the Temple, etc. In a passage with Masonic resonance, Franco affirmed: "The Temple, which is the Heart of the World, whose Influence is communicated to all parts of the Body, which now is of Stone, after the coming of the Messias shall be of flesh." [56]

With Cabalistic study reclaimed by Franco as permissable for royalist Christians, Evelyn's expose of the Sabbatian movement was rendered less threatening to Jews (and Marranos) who enjoyed the protection of the king.

To Arlington, Evelyn linked Christian partisans of the Sabbatians with Cromwellian radicals, who still posed a threat to the Stuart regime:

But whil'st the Time is not vet accomplish'd, I could wish our modern Enthusiasts, and other prodigious sects amongst us, who Dreame of the like Carnal Expectations, and a Temporal Monarchy, might seriously weigh how nearly their Characters approach the Style and Design of these Deluded Wretchcs [Jewish Sabbatians], least they fall into the same Condemnation, and the Snare of the Devil.[57]

Despite the attacks by militant Protestants, Charles II continued to welcome pacific Rosicrucians and Cabalists to his court. In October 1670, while attending the Newmarket races, he was joined by F. M. van Helmont, who was a longtime friend of Prince Rupert, the king's cousin and partner in chemical and artistic studies.[58]

Moray was familiar with Van Helmont's Alphabetum Naturae, which Oldenburg had reviewed for the Royal Society in January 1668, noting that Van Helmont learned Hebrew so well that he understood the whole Hebrew Bible. The "Judaizing Rosicrucian" then visited Henry More and Anne Conway, who were currently studying the works of Hendrik Niklaus, founder of the "Family of Love." Though Conway defended Familist doctrines, More criticized them as similar to Quaker beliefs. Van Helmont's Hebrew studies would soon stimulate Cabalistic interest and controversy in the mystical circles of Conway, More, and George Keith, the Scottish Quaker.[59][60]

With the Sabbatian movement and its millenarian supporters now discredited, Charles II expressed his appreciation for the loyalty of the Jews by appointing many of them as "sworn brokers."[61]

In The History of the Three Late Famous Impostors (1669), dedicated to Queen Catherine, he was also known as a friend and protector of Jews. Orrery worked with Webb to design an elaborate production by the King's Company to be held in January 1672, but a fire destroyed the Theatre Royal. From the script, it is clear that Orrery intended stunning views of the Temple, which would appear mysteriously while singing priests in white robes praise Herod on his sumptuous throne. Amidst the corruption, sensuality, and violence of the Hebrew court, certain noble Jews were willing to die in order to save a friend. Thus, the themes of elevated conjugal love and mystical friendship were linked with the good Jews who tried to regenerate Jerusalem and the Temple. [62]

In The Tragedy of King Saul, composed circa 1671 but published posthumously, Orrery further elaborated the theme of fraternal bonding. As David and Jonathan make vows of eternal friendship ("one Soul in both our Bodies be"), they stand in contrast to oath-breakers who lift their hands against the Lord's anointed. [63]

The royalist panegyrics occur amidst scenes of a mystically-shrouded Temple, magician's cave, flying spirits, and prophetic visions.

"Jesuit Conspiracy"

As Eveline Cruickshanks describes in her book The Glorious Revolution (2000) Charles's secretary of state Williamson was sent to the Tower because of his effort to employ Irish regiments released from French service. Charles believed that the Duke of Buckingham and Shaftesbury, now allied with the opposition Whigs in Parliament, instigated the actions of Tonge and Oates.

James Butler, who was privy to Buckingham's intrigues, added to the political complications with his charges of Franco-Scottish-Jewish sedition in Hudibras III, which was reprinted in 1679.

Because Francophilia makes marriage unfashionable (a dig at promiscuous courtiers and the profusion of royal bastards), Hudibras and the Scots now serve the cause of Papist agents: "your Presbyterian wits/Jump punctual with the Jesuits." (Hubridas, p. 210, 214)

While Hooke and the Rosicrucianized virtuosos work with Napier's Bones, they implicitly support the Scots and Catholics. (p.250)

While they study Kircher's works, they not only support the Jesuits but the Jews:

"But Jesuites have deeper Reaches
In all their Politick Far-fetches:
And from their Coptick Priest, Kirkerus,
Found out this Mystick way to jear us.

They thought, all Governments were best,
By Hieroglyphick Rumps, exprest.

The Learned Rabbins of the Jews
Write, there's a Bone, which they call Luez,
I' th' Rump of man, of such a Vertue,
No force in Nature can do hurt to:
And therefore, at the last Great Day,
All th' other Members shall, they say,
Spring out of this, as from a Seed,
All sorts of Vegetals proceed:
From whence, the Learned Sons of Art,
Os Sacrum, Justly stile that part. (p.280-81)

The Cabalistic theory of the mystical bone Luz was explained in the Kabbalah Denudata, which was currently being discussed by vanious Fellows of the Royal Society. In a letter of 6 June 1679 John Locke, FRS, who had earlier studied under the Rosicrucian Sthael, noted that Robert Boyle informed him of the publication of the Zohar, newly translated into Latin by "un tres habil homme avec des notes qui expliquent l'ancien Cabala des Juifs." [64]

Locke was interested in Helmontian theories of medicine, and he subsequently learned of F. M. Van Helmont's contribution to the Kabbalah Denudata, which he then acquired. Rosenroth later sent to Locke interesting Cabalistic commentaries on the philosopher's essays. In his letter to Boyle, Locke also revealed that Isaac Abendana "s'est brouille" with the authorities at Cambridge and thus took his Alishna project to Oxford. Rosenroth later complained of the harsh treatment he received from many clerics in Germany because of his publication of Kabbalah Denudata, and Helmont found the climate in England becoming increasingly intolerant.

With the country reeling from the sensational revelations of the phony "Popish Plot," the Whigs rummaged through Tonge's chaotic papers for more evidence of the Catholic conspiracy. For decades Tonge had collected occultist prophecies which he applied to imagined Jesuitical intrigues and which he now resolved to publish. Writing furiously in late 1679, Tonge prepared The Northern Star: The British Monarchy, dedicated to Charles II and published early in 1680. Drawing on Abbot Joachim, Paracelsus, Agripa, Reuchlin, Postel, Nostradamus, Napier, Sendivogius, and Maxwell, Tonge assured Charles II of his prophetic role as the northern king who would settle God's Temple in the North Country. In Chapter IV, entitled "The Confession of the Rosie-Cross," he linked Charles with the mythic God-Son C.R. who founded the R.C. society.

He further assured him of scientific support, for the secretary of the Royal Society (Oldenburg) had received similar prophecies in 1668. Ocular proof was currently provided by the German visionary Martin Eyler, who was in London with his agate shew-stone in which spiritual figures revealed political prophecies.

According to Ezerel Tonge, the only obstacle to Charles's role as Rosicrucian savior of international Protestantism was the nefarious plot of the Jesuits, who had learned from the "Assassins of Phoenecia" how to train adepts for their campaign. Because Tonge's bizarre linkage of Jesuits and Assassins would re-emerge in anti-Masonic propaganda in the eighteenth century, it is worth a brief look at his fevered argument.

In Jesuits Assassins: or the Popish Plot Further Declared (1680), he made oblique Masonic-sounding comments. "The sect of Assassins lived in the mountains near Tyre, where their Master was not hereditary but elected." (p. 4-6) Called the "Old Man of the Mountain," this prophet was a great builder, who designed wonderful palaces adorned with pictures.

By intoxicating his disciples with a certain drink (hashish), he gave them a glimpse of paradise which inspired them to swear obedience to the Master, loyalty to their brothers, and death to their enemies. Having studied the Assassins, the Jesuits then adopted their methods in order to destroy Protestantism.

Rather than giving their agents hashish, the Jesuits used charms and exorcisms, performed in "Chambers of Meditation and other Recesses of Darkness": they "conjured up gradually to that prodigious fury, as to think that in bloody assassinations of Kings and Princes, and merciless blowing up of Kingdoms, they do acceptable service to God, and merit everlasting Life." Through their magical meditation techniques, the Jesuit agents become angelized and divinized to prepare for their deadly work.

Quoting the Spanish Jesuit Vaninus, Tonge interpreted his description of a brother who was sent to London, where he labored forty-nine days "in cutting stones," as an allusion to the Gun Powder Plot to blow up "the Walls under the Parliament House." Such false stone-cutters then arranged the murder of Charles I and the Great Fire of London.

Through his earlier work on church construction and his collaboration with Moray, Hooke, Harley, and various master masons, Tonge was familiar with operative masonry. Oates too had observed the masons at work in Tangier. However, it is unclear whether their paranoid polemics were consciously aimed at royalist Freemasonry. Nevertheless, the scare engendered by their revelations placed not only Masons but Rosicrucians and Cabalists in a hazardous position. That Buckingham, whom the king believed to be the inventor of the Popish Plot, allegedly served as an "indolent" Grand Master in 1679 gave an ironic twist to Tonge's revelations."[65] Probably pressured by an angry Charles II, Buckingham "demitted" from the office. He was replaced by his rival, the ever loyal Arlington, who however "was too deeply engaged in affairs of State to mind the Lodges."

Nevertheless, Arlington continued to represent the tolerant traditions of Stuart Freemasonry, for he was sympathetic to Catholics and Jews, as well as being a great admirer of Spanish and French architecture — subjects which filled Tonge with iconoclastic disgust. Evelyn considered Arlington a learned and pious man, who devoted his architectural skills to God's service. Two years earlier, Evelyn praised Arlington for rebuilding the church at Euston, making it "for elegance and cheerfulnes ... one of the prettiest country churches in England," and he was moved by Arlington's motives in the project:

My Lord told me his heart smote him that, after he had bestowed so much on his magnificent palace there, he should see God's House in the ruin it lay in. He has also re-built the parsonage-house, all of stone, very neat and ample. [66]

Though Anderson claimed that during Arlington's Grand Mastership, "the Fraternity was considerable still, and many Gentlemen requested to be admitted," there is no surviving evidence of developments in "speculative" Freemasonry in England over the next two decades. Stevenson observes that "English gentlemen non-operatives were not organised into lodges with set memberships of a Scottish or modern kind, but met in fluid occasional lodges" connected with building sites.[67]

However, when Charles sent his embattled brother James to Scotland in November 1679, the duke's intermittent presence over the next thirty months encouraged a revival of royalist Masonry in the north. In this political context lay the roots of the later development of Jacobite Freemasonry, when Scottish and Irish Masons loyal to James VII and II took their "ancient" traditions into exile with their banished king.

Ouston argues that the king sent the Duke of York to Scotland to keep him out of the way of an English Commons inflamed by the Popish Plot and to enable him to develop an alternative political power base.[68]

During his previous "exile" to the Continent from May to August 1679, James appreciated the generous support of Kincardine, whom he in turn consoled when the earl had problems with Lauderdale.[69]

Kincardine now served as an Extraordinary Lord of Session, and he was instrumental in bringing factions together to welcome James to Edinburgh. From London Lauderdale helped to organize the loyal reception, and the heir apparent was greeted warmly by the aristocratic and professional classes. The latter had become fearful of civil war after the murder of Archbishop Sharp by radical Presbyterians in May, followed by an armed rising of Coverranters in June. Despite James's Catholicism, the ruling establishment viewed him as a beneficent presence, compared to the sadirons opponents of royal government. There was also popular enthusiasm for the first Stuart prince to establish a royal court in Edinburgh since 1603.

James cultivated an image of himself as the heir of his grandfather's Solomonic tradition, for James VI was still a revered figure in Scotland. Though he encouraged the architectural work of William Bruce, Robert Mylne, and James Smith (a Catholic-educated designer), Masonic historians have long assumed that he was the first Stuart king in three reigns who did not become a Freemason. However, that claim was made by Anderson who, though a native Scot, was a staunch supporter of the Protestant revolution which overthrew James II in 1688. According to the eighteenth-century Clermont Rite, Sir William Bruce served as chief of the secret Templar-Masonic order from 1679 until 1686, at the time when he was closely associated with James.[70]

Moreover, until the death of Kincardine in July 1680, James was the intimate friend of that loyal and idealistic Mason. As we shall see, James would receive important Masonic support in Scotland when he succeeded to the throne in 1685. Moreover, in 1777 his grandson, "Bonnie Prince Charlie," would reveal to an initiatic of a German Templar lodge that "the secret Grand Mastership of the Masons was hereditary in the house of Stuart."[71]

James was probably introduced to military masonry during the Interregnum, when he frequently worked with Scottish and Irish engineers serving with him in the French army. During his residence in Edinburgh, he took a keen interest in architectural projects, which were often minutely supervised from Whitehall by Lauderdale. In fact, Cruickshanks argues that James "led an artistic renaissance with the rebuilding of Holyrood Palace." [72]

Many private as well as public buildings now included heraldic devices and deliberate reminders of Scotland's historic independence and links with a wider European scientific and artistic world.[73] Determined to extend Charles's intellectual and virtuoso culture to Scotland, James made Edinburgh an extension of the Stuart court. During his cultural campaign, he received strong support from Sir George Mackenzie, Lord Advocate, who was an old friend of Lauderdale and Moray and who shared the latter's devotion to bonded friendship, stoic philosophy, and scientific heraldry. [74]

Like Moray, Mackenzie hoped that the New Philosophy could overcome religious fanaticism, and he published Religio Stoici: the Virtuoso or Stoick, with a Friendly Address to the Fanatics of all Sects and Sorts. (1663).

Sharing James's interest in chivalric revival, Mackenzie now prepared a treatise on The Science of Heraldry (1680), which paid tribute to the "auld alliance" with France and defined many themes that would later emerge in the knightly degrees of Écossais Freemasonry. Dedicating the work "to my country-men," Mackenzie lamented that: "We only of all nations have never published anything, to let the world know what marks of honour our predecessors had gained."[75]

He became fascinated by heraldry while studying in France, and he subsequently explored a vast literature on the subject. Drawing on Aldrovandus and Favyn, he cited a Biblical "Jacobite" origin for heraldry: "some think that the giving of arms arose from the example of Jacob blessing his children, in which he gave them marks of distinction." He then traced the contributions made by Godfrey of Bouillon and other crusaders at Jerusalem, as well as the French king who made the Scottish archers his personal bodyguard ("an honour they retain to this day"). Now encouraged by James, Mackenzie's friends revived the Royal Company of Archers, which had traditional links with the Garde Écossais and which stressed fraternal loyalty, militaristic royalism, and patriotic achievement.

Provoked by Ashmole's claims for the Garter, Mackenzie argued the priority of the Order of the Thistle, which was created in 787 A.D. to honor the alliance between the French king Charlemagne and the Scottish king Achalus, who defeated the English king Athelstan. Robert the Bruce subsequently revived the Thistle and contributed new arms for the citizens of Aberdeen to honor their Victory over the English. After the Reformation the order was suppressed as "a Dreg of Popery," but many Scottish nobles kept its symbols alive in their heraldic arms, architectural decorations, and emblematic coins.[76]

Despite Mackenzie's nationalist fervor, he was careful to praise the current union of Scotland and England under their Stuart king. Determined to build a secure power base in Scotland, James was impressed by Mackenzie's claims, and he would later revive the Thistle as a royalist chivalric order.

In January 1679 Mackenzie was admitted freeman of a craftsman's corporation (which Gould reports in a Masonic context), and he had many Masonic associates. [77] His arguments about heraldry, the Thistle, and the Garter would later influence the development of chivalric high degrees in Scots-Irish and Écossais Masonry.

Another strong supporter of James's virtuoso campaign was Sir Robert Sibbald, royal geographer, who had earlier been a protege of Moray. Like Gilbert Burnet earlier, Sibbald had visited the Jews' synagogue in Amsterdam and Catholic chapels in Paris, experiences that "disposed me to affect charity for all good men of any persuasion."[78]

Sibbald collected rare works on Cabalism, Lullism, Hermeticism, and Rosicrucianism, and his library became a valuable resource for students of "speculative Freemasonry."[79]

For the Catholic James, the support of the Episcopal Sibbald for toleration was invaluable during his stay in Scotland. In fact, the two men virtually revived Moray's earlier successful policy of religious and political moderation.

James introduced his English physician Sir Charles Scarborough to Sibbald, and the three men developed a plan to construct a Royal College of Physicians in Edinburgh in 1681.

Scarborough had been the protege and successor of Dr. William Harvey, the old friend of Robert Fludd, and he participated in their Hermetic and Cabalistic studies. While in Scotland, he solicited the support of James Drummond, Fourth Earl of Perth for the medical college, and the earl would later play a leading role in Jacobite Freemasonry.

Like Sibbald, Scarborough amassed a great occultist library, which included works by Rabbi Abraham, Trithemius, Postel, Dee, Bruno, Scaliger, Fludd, Kircher, Van Helmont.

John Falconer, a Scottish expert in cryptography, who was entrusted with James's private cipher. Falconer argued that cryptography derived from Hebrew roots. Analyzing the methods of Trithemius, Baptista Porta, Bacon, Wilkins, and Kircher, he made important breakthroughs in code-making, which would later be used in Jacobite and French military intelligence. Like Robert Hooke, who argued that John Dee's angelic conversations contained an ingenious diplomatic code, Falconer argued that Trithermus's mystical expressions were "all cryptography."

Because Falconer knew many of the royalist Masons in Scotland, his instructions on "Saemaelogia" and "Dactylogy" (secret communication by signs, gestures, and fingers), as well as "Arthrologia" (discovering by "the joynts or remarkable parts of a Man's Body") may have influenced the complex and often indecipherable codes and body-language used by later Jacobite Masons.

John Falconer. Rules for Explaining and Deciphering All Manner of Secret Writing London: Dan Brown, 1692), 6, 101-12-160 73. Falconer later deciphered the Duke of Argyll's correspondence, which led to the exposure of his plot against James's succession.

English Endings

In 1679 when Alexander Dickson, professor of Hebrew at Edinburgh University, was removed for refusing to sign the oath of allegiance, James approved the appointment of Alexander Amedeus, a Florentine Jew, to the post. [80]

The royal brother's actions did not go unnoticed south of the border, where radical opponents linked toleration for Jews to Rosicrucian intrigue and Francophilia. In 1680 an English translation of the Count of Cabalis appeared in London, claiming to be published by "the Cabalistical Society of the Sages, at the Sign of the Rosicrucian." The author worried that many of his friends "do seriously study" these "Mysteries of Cabalism," and therefore he must refute them "by the strength of solid arguments."[81]

The latter consisted of railing against the Frenchified nature of the eroticized spirituality of "the Cabalistic sciences." The Cabalist, both Jewish and Christian, is "a great hater of women; yet much addicted to Venery, in a philosophical way"; thus, "only a Frenchman would give credit to Cabalistic whimsies."

In the northern kingdom, James may have learned of Quaker interest in the Cabalistic system of Van Helmont, who was widely believed to be a 'Judaized" Rosicrucian. The duke was a close friend of William Penn, the Quaker leader and a supporter of the Stuarts' toleration policy. Van Helmont had won over Penn's Scottish friend George Keith to his Cabalistic beliefs, and Keith in turn recruited Helmont to Quakerism. Keith was convinced of similarities between the Quaker doctrine of inner light and the Christian-Cabalistic notion of the "Christ within."[82]

He and Helmont further believed that a synthesis of Cabala and Christianity could provide a nucleus for a religious movement uniting Catholics, Protestants, Pagans, and Jews. Encouraged by James's sympathy for Quakers, Penn's movement attracted many new followers in Scotland. Given this eclectic and tolerant environment, it is not surprising that lodge records in Aberdeen, written circa 1679-80, indicate the presence of Quakers, as well as "landowners, merchants and craftsmen," among the Freemasons.[83]

One royalist Mason who supported the Quakers was the Earl of Perth, who was Penn's partner in the settlement of East New Jersey in 1681. [84]

In the portraits of two members of the Aberdeen lodge there appear in the background the pillars of Jachim and Boaz, suggesting their Masonic initiation into Solomon's Temple.[85]

James's revival of his grandfather's Solomonic policies was effective and popular in Scotland, and his support of religious toleration was widely believed to be sincere. When he returned to London in March 1682, he left behind in Edinburgh a reservoir of good will and patriotic support, especially among the royalist Masons who would later defend his threatened throne.

In 1680 Christopher Wren was persuaded to accept the presidency of the Royal Society in what was an urgently needed salvage operation. At the same time, he continued his role as Surveyor of the King's Works, while he and Hooke carried on the massive task of rebuilding more than fifty churches in London. However, the Whigs' campaign to exclude James from the succession polarized England, while increasingly radical attacks were made on the royalist institutions which supported Stuart claims. Wren was dismayed when parliament withdrew its support and cut off the funds for many of his projects.[86]

Fighting back against the Exclusionists, the poet laureate Dryden published Absalom and Achitophel (1681) to counter critics who threatened to destroy hereditary monarchy. Portraying Buckingham as "Zimri," Dryden mocked the inconstancy and opportunism of the duke and his Whig opposition party. Zimri's enthusiasms shifted from

Despite James's political and architectural success in Scotland, Charles II found his policies under increasing attack by his religious opponents in England. The radicals' iconoclastic fury soon ramified to Tangier, where the fate of the greatest engineering project of the century was now in the hands of the parliamentary Whigs. What alarmed them most were reports of the successful progress of the fortification and military enterprises. In 1669 the king had sent the First Earl of Middleton, Moray's former colleague, to govern Tangier, where he drew on his experience as liaison with the Dutch Jews to continue the policy of toleration.[87] Because the stone for constructing the Mole and fortifications had to be quarried from outside the existing lines, it was crucial that he maintain good relations with the Jewish and Moslem inhabitants. Given his Scottish background and duties in Tangier, it seems likely that Middleton was a Mason; his grandson, the Third Earl, would later participate in the Jacobite lodge in Paris. [88]

Despite the heavy drinking that earlier led to his dismissal from Scottish office, Middleton was an effective governor until his death in 1674. [89]

His successor, the Irish governor Inchiquin, continued to rely on Simon Pariente, their trusted Jewish interpreter, and positive reports on Hebrew beliefs and customs were sent to London. Lancelot Addison, who spent several years in Tangier, drew on his conversations with local Jews to write The Present State of the Jews, Particularly Relating to Rose in Barbag (1675), a respectful and straightforward account. Addison dedicated the work to Joseph Williamson, secretary of state, who recommended it to his friend Hooke, who subsequently read and discussed it. In 1675, during a food shortage, Inchiquin utilized crypto-Sabbatians willing to break Jewish ritual law to import salted pork for the British garrison.[90]

Their heretical actions provoked the Beth Din of Tetuan to excommunicate the European Jews of Tangier, but Inchiquin insisted that the herein be lifted. When Morrocan authorities expelled all Jews as "suspected nationals" in 1677, he helped win their readmission as valuable traders in 1680.

During the 1670s, increasing numbers of masons and soldiers were shipped out from Scotland and Ireland, and they soon won popular fame for their courageous stands against Moorish attacks. However, in 1679 when the Whigs tried to force Charles II to accept the "Exclusion Bill," they linked his willingness to deny the succession to his Catholic brother with their willingness to provide funds for Tangier. Lurid charges of Papist conspiracy among the colony's governors, troops, and masons were flung during parliamentary debates. [91]

But Charles would not sacrifice his brother to save Tangier; instead, he prorogued Parliament in March 1681 and governed without it until the end of his reign.

Despite Parliament's hostility, there was support for the colony in the Royal Society, which had long followed the masonic work. Henry Sheeres, FRS, was chief engineer of construction, and he sent optimistic reports to the Fellows. In 1682 the Moroccan ambassador Hamet travelled to London to urge the king to preserve the colony, and he was welcomed by Evelyn, Ashmole, and interested virtuosos to the society, where he was elected a Fellow. [92]

Pressure also came from the Knights of Malta, who counted on the colonists' assistance in their struggle to liberate Christian slaves from their Moorish captors. In June 1683 the Grand Master of Malta arrived in London, where he pleaded the colony's cause and was entertained with Evelyn and Dryden.

Though Charles had proclaimed that Tangier was "the brightest jewel of his Crown," he succumbed to Parliament in 1683 and announced his decision to level the fortifications, destroy the Mole, ruin the harbour, and recall the garrison and colonists to England. It was a sad day in masonic history when the commission met in Tangier to plan the destruction of the great Mole which, as Riley notes, was an engineering feat "comparable with the construction of the Channel tunnel today.[93] The Swedish architects Tessin and Beckman, as well as Sheeres, reluctantly agreed to undo their labor of two decades. [94] It would take two thousand men working round the clock for three months to finally destroy the massive stone-works. When the evacuated "Tangerines" arrived in England in April 1684, they were welcomed by the royalists as returning heroes.

The question of placing the returning troops greatly agitated Parliament, who feared that they formed a ready army to defend the Stuart cause. A Royal Warrant suggested the stationing of Lord Dumbarton's Scots regiment — which included veterans of the Garde Écossaise at the strategic port of Portsmouth. Perhaps with an eye to that Franco-Scottish tradition, the king proposed to make the Scotch-Irish Grenadiers his personal bodygard. The Whigs protested these measures, and the troops were eventually dispersed throughout the country, where they were considered "eyesores." Colonel John Fitzgerald, who earlier served as Lieutenant Governor of Tangier, had labored to abolish "that national distinction between English, Irish, and Scotch" and to maintain the "remarkable" policy of toleration.[95]

Blocked from promotion by anti-Irish M.P.s, Fitzgerald was falsely accused of complicity in the Popish Plot. He and his Tangerine regiment would loyally serve the Stuarts through revolution and exile.

For many royalists, the destruction of Tangier was a betrayal of the great architectural and masonic traditions of the Stuart dynasty. An anti-Whig ballad, "Tangiers Lamentation on the Demolishing and Blowing up of the Town, Castle, and Citadel," lambasted the politicians whose political factionalism, xenophobic provincialism, and technological ignorance led to the destruction of architectural work worthy of Solomon, Hiram, and the ancient Jewish masons.

The seeds of future Masonic rivalries were planted on 6 February 1685 when Charles II, a "Mason King," died after a four-day illness. On his deathbed, he secretly converted to Catholicism and received the last rites of the Roman church. [96]

As far as the public knew, Charles had died as a tolerant Anglican, who hoped that Englishmen would now accept his brother, a tolerant Catholic, as King James II. However, the radical exclusionists now stepped up their campaign against the legitimacy of his brother's succession. In order to remind Britons of the earlier storms of civil war which disrupted the natural order and to bolster the claims of James, Thomas Otway composed "Windsor Castle" in March 1685.

In his poetic "monument" to the late king, Otway strolled through Windsor Castle, seeing in its massive stone architecture a revelation of the mind and heritage of Charles II.[97] He further praised the "wonders of Fraternal love," as exemplified by James's behavior at Charles's deathbed. That scene reminded him of the chivalric ideals of the Knights of the Garter, so brilliantly expressed in the intricate stone carvings of the Gothic chapel at Windsor. As James II's cause came under fire from "The meeting of a numerous Senate," who provoked "bold Tumults and Disorders" throughout England, Otway's poem provided potent royalist propaganda.

With Britain headed into another revolution and possible civil war, the question of what "toleration" really meant took on urgent significance. Did it consist of liberty of conscience and universal brotherhood or protection of Protestantism and suppression of Catholicism? The contradictory answers would shatter the Stuarts' attempt to build a Temple of Concord. While one man's tolerance was defined as another's tyranny, the struggle would ramify into the emerging "modernist" development of Freemasonry.

The European Diaspora of Scottish-Esoteric Masonry

The fate of Stuart Freemasonry during the early Williamite regime is difficult to piece together, because of destruction of documents and increasing secrecy maintained by Jacobite resisters and exiles. Anderson noted that "many of the Fraternity's records" from Charles II's reign were lost during James II's reign and "at the Revolution."[98]

William Bruce continued to secretly work for James's cause, and he was indirectly instrumental in the Jacobite outreach to Sweden — where many Scots fled after William's victories. Despite government surveillance, Bruce and his Jacobite-Masonic allies sought contacts with sympathizers in northern England, such as the steel-manufacturer Ambrose Crowley, who maintained important trade with Sweden and Scotland. Around 1688-90 Crowley established a masonic lodge at Sunderland, close to Newcastle, which served the operative masons involved in constructing the large stone buildings for the steel works. [99]

The lodge probably also served as a means of bonding his religiously and ethnically diverse workforce. As a Quaker, Crowley was grateful to James II for his policy of religious toleration and for the royal protection given to the steel-maker's foreign workmen, who included Catholics and Lutherans. [100]

Several Quakers had joined lodges in Scotland during James's residence in the north and, following their leader William Penn, they retained their sympathy for the Jacobite cause. Like Crowley's employees, they agreed with James that "liberty of conscience" would benefit industry and trade.

Crowley provides an early preview of Jacobite-Masonic links between Edinburgh, Newcastle, and Gothenburg that would endure for the next seven decades. By 1691 Sir James Montgomerie, radical Covenanter turned Jacobite plotter, gained Swedish support for James II's cause, and two years later the Swedish ambassador in London would hide Jacobite agents." [101]

The Swedish king Carl XI allowed a Scottish-affiliated lodge to continue meeting in Gothenburg. His son Carl XII would become a staunch supporter of James II's son, the "Old Pretender," and allegedly a protector of Écossais Freemasonry in Sweden.[102]

The Tessin family would provide important support for Jacobite exiles and Masons in Sweden and on the Continent. By 1788 the Swedish king Gustaf III would inherit the Grand Mastership of the Masonic Knights Templar directly from James II's grandson, the "Young Pretender," Charles Edward Stuart. [103]

In the meantime in England, William III was preoccupied with European war plans and paid little attention to architecture in his new kingdom. After a hiatus in 1689, Wren managed to resume his position as Surveyor of Works, and he attempted to complete his rebuilding projects. However, as Summerson notes, during the next decade — "this vacant interval" — few churches were built in England.[104]

French and Continental historians argue that Wren maintained his private Jacobite sympathies, while he worked discretely and cautiously under the new regime. [105] Jeffery suggests that the lack of written documents about Wren's work during these years was deliberate:

... his tracks are usually well-hidden. His early brushes with authority had taught him to be wary of committing himself to paper and of exposing his ideas to public criticism and debate ... he may just have carried on, unwilling to record decisions on paper."[106]

Wren still maintained contact with Freemasons in Scotland, and the Hamiltons often consulted him and Bruce about the progress of their grandiose palace.[107]

After the Williamite repressions of December 1691, the exiled Scots were joined by thousands of Irish refugees, who fled to France, Italy, and Spain. These "Wild Geese" included nobles and soldiers who carried their "Masonic traditions into the armies of friendly Catholic sovereigns, who still maintained chivalric orders of military and religious knights." [108]

The Irish Masonic historian Lepper observes that the army "was a great disseminator of the true light," for "our militant forefathers" found that "the secrets of a mason were very useful pieces of equipment to carry with them to a campaign."[109]

He further argues that "masonic degrees were in full vogue long prior to the creation of the [modern English] Grand Lodge in 1717" and that "the lodges of St. John maintained their association with the operative lodges." He implies that the Jacobite lodges developed degrees beyond the basic operative ones.

The many French, German, Italian, Swedish, and Russian publications, issued from the eighteenth through twentieth centuries, which reveal oral traditions about the export of Jacobite Masonry to the Continent will be discussed in my projected books on eighteenth century, high-degree Freemasonry. However, it is worth mentioning now the version of that history learned by a Scottish Mason, Professor John Robison, in the 1770's, when he participated in lodges established by Jacobite exiles and their supporters in France, Belgium, Germany, and Russia. Robison lamented "the heap of rubbish with which Anderson disgraced his Constitutions of Free Masony," which had unfortunately become the basis of masonic history.

Recounting the different historical instruction he received in Écossais lodges, John Robison asserted:

"We also know that Charles II was made a Mason, and frequented the Lodges ... His brother and successor James II was of a more serious and manly cast of mind, and had little pleasure in the frivolous ceremonies of Masonry. He did not frequent the Lodges."

Rather than repeating Anderson's claim that James was not a "Brother Mason," Robison implied that he did not attend often or enjoy lodge meetings. Moreover, Robison added that the lodges had become the rendezvous of "accepted" Masons who had no association with actual building projects — which suggests that James "did not frequent" English lodges. In Scotland and Ireland, the lodges continued to be closely associated with practical architecture. After the Williamite revolution, James and "his most zealous adherents" took refuge in France:

"They took Free Masonry with them to the continent, where it was immediately received by the French, and was cultivated with great zeal in a manner suited to the taste and habits of that highly cultivated people. The Lodges in France naturally became the rendezvous of the adherents to their banished King, and the means of a carrying on a correspondence with their friends in England." (p.27)

From France the exiles scattered across Europe and established clandestine Masonic networks. Robison notes that "All the Brethren on the Continent agree in saying, that Freemasonry was imported from Great Britain about the beginning of this century [ca. 1690-1700] and this in the form of a mystical society." (p.541)

Robison then described a special chivalric degree created by the Jacobites:

It was in the Lodges held at St. Germain's that the degree of Chevalier Alafon Écossais was added to the three SYMBOLICAL degrees of English Masonry ... this rank of Scotch Knight was called the first degree of the Maçon Parfait. There is a device belonging to this Lodge which deserves notice. A lion, wounded by an arrow, and escaped from the stake to which he had been bound, with the broken rope still about his neck, is represented lying at the mouth of a cave, and occupied with mathematical instruments which are lying near him. A broken crown lies at the foot of the stake. There can be little doubt but that this emblem alludes to the dethronement, the captivity, the escape and asylum of James II and his hopes of re-establishment by the help of the loyal Brethren. This emblem is worn as the gorget of the Scotch Knight. It is not very certain, however, when this degree was added, whether immediately after King James's Abdication, or about the time of the attempt to set his son on the British Throne. But it is certain, that in 1716, this and still higher degrees of Masonry were much in vogue in the court of France." (p.28)

These claims of chivalric developments within Jacobite Masonry continue to provoke arguments among historians, because of the dearth of contemporary documentation until the 1720's. However, an oblique reinforcement comes from Swift, who drew upon his experiences in Dublin in 1688 and Ulster in 1695 to later describe the chivalric (as well as Cabalistic, Lullist, and Rosicrucian) associations of Scots-Irish Freemasonry. Swift's comical summary of "Celtic" traditions in "a Lodge of Free-Masons at 0----h in U----r" (Omagh in Ulster) throws a retrospective light on developments in the fraternity in the 1690's. [110]

In 1689 Swift fled the political turmoil in Dublin and moved to England, where he became amanuensis to the retired diplomat Sir William Temple at Moor Park. Temple shared Swift's sceptical curiosity about Rosicrucianism, which he had encountered in its radical form in Ireland during the 1650's. [111]

He also dealt with operative masons there, who drew on Scots-Irish traditions. After the Restoration, Temple was employed on delicate secret missions by Charles II and Lord Arlington, both Masons, and he was kept abreast of Scottish affairs while serving at The Hague. In 1668 Arlington sent Temple a paper written by Moray and praised the Scot's expertise in chemistry. [112]

Two years later Temple met Moray, who sought his assistance for the export to Holland of Kincardine's building stone, an enterprise which involved William Bruce and William Davidson.[113]

Thus, when Temple discussed with Swift the secret diplomacy of Charles II, he may have revealed the role of Freemasonry in Stuart politics.

In "Prose" vol. V, p. 328-29 we see J. Swift writing:

"The Branch of the Lodge of Solomon's Temple, afterwards call'd the Lodge of St John of Jerusalem ... is ... the Antientest and Purest now on Earth. The famous old Scottish Lodge of Kilwinning of which all the Kings of Scotland have been from Time to Time Grand Masters without Interruption down from the days of Fergus, who Reign'd there more than 2000 Years ago, long before the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem or the Knights of Maltha, to which two Lodges I must nevertheless allow the Honour of having adorn'd the Anticin Jewish and Pagan Masonry with many Religious and Christian Rules.

Fergus being eldest Son to the chief King of Ireland, was carefully instructed in all the Arts and Sciences, especially the natural Magick, and the Caballistical Philosophy (afterwards called the Rosecrution) by the pagan Druids of i'vlona, the only true Cabalists then Extant in the Western World ...

Fergus before his Descent upon the Picts in Scotland rais'd that famous Structure, call'd to this Day Carrick-Fergus, the most misterious Piece of Architecture now on Earth, (not excepting the Pyramids of the Egyptian Masons, and their Hieroglyphicks or Free Masons signs) ... he built it as a Lodge for a College of Free Masons in those days call'd Druids."

An exiled Scot and convert to "universalist" Catholicism, Ramsay wrote Swift to thank him for supporting The Travels of Cyrus (1727), Ramsay's allegorical novel, which was suffused with Jacobite and Masonic themes. [114]

A decade later, Ramsay revealed to the Écossais lodge in Paris a Jacobite version of Masonic history that echoed and colaborated many of Swift's revelations in A Letter from the Grand Mistress.

Swift stressed the Jewish roots of Masonry, noting that it was originally called Cabala, and he revealed the initiates' preoccupation with Cabalistic gematria and notarikon.[115]

For their Masonic relationship, see M. K. Schuchard, "Ramsay, Swift, and the Jacobite-Masonic Version of the Stuart Restoration," in Esoterisme, Gnosis et Imaginaire Symbolique (2001), 491-50.

Ramsay similarly stressed the Jewish origins and Cabalistic descent, noting that "The secret Science can be preserved pure only amongst God's people," the Jews, because the Masons' traditions... are founded on the annals of the most ancient race in the, world, the only one, still in existence with the same name as of old and not intermingled with other nations although so widely dispersed and also the only one that has preserved its ancient books, whereas those of almost all other races are lost."[116]

While Swift referred to the preservation of Jewish secrets in lodges of "the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem or the Knights of Maltha," Ramsay described the concealment of Solomon's hieroglyphic writing ("the original Code of our Order") in the foundations of the Second Temple and its subsequent discovery by the crusading knights who liberated Jerusalem.

According to Swift and Ramsay, when the crusaders returned to Europe, they infused the Solomonic secrets of Cabalism and Temple building into their lodges. More explicitly than Swift, Ramsay named "James, Lord Steward of Scotland" as "Grand Master of a Lodge established at Kilwinning" in 1286, when he also initiated the English Earl of Gloucester and the Irish Earl of Ulster. Obliquely identifying early Masonry with the Templars, Ramsay noted that "an intimate union" was formed with the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem (the Hospitallers). Unlike Swift, he did not mention the Knights of Malta, who subsequently absorbed Templar and Hospitaller traditions and who underwent a short-lived revival in Ireland during James II's residence there in 1690. Since the merging of the chivalric orders into Masonry, the brothers continued to imitate their Jewish forefathers: "The union was made after the manner of the Israelites when they built the Second Temple, whilst some handled the trowel and the compasses, others defended them with sword and buckler."

Though little documentation survives concerning Freemasonry at the turn of the seventeenth century, the seeds were already planted for the almost startling growth of the fraternity in the eighteenth century. After the accession of the Elector of Hanover to the British throne in 1714, the suppression of the Jacobite rebellion of 1715, and the exposure of the Jacobite-Swedish plot of 1716, a rival system of "modern" Hanoverian Freemasonry was established in 1717, and it struggled in bitter competition with the "ancient" Stuart system until 1813.

Outside of Britain, the "ancients" recruited many more followers and became associated with nationalist movements in Eastern Europe and North and South America. For these liberationists, the Scottish traditions of resistance to foreign domination and mystical elevation of ordinary men to brotherhood with kings seemed fraught with contemporary relevance.

Throughout the eighteenth century, the "ancient" Stuart traditions were maintained in clandestine Jacobite lodges in Britain and in the lodges of the Stuart diaspora. The Jewish associations were carried on by Francis Francia (the "Jacobite Jew"), Dr. Samuel Jacob Falk (the "Baal Shem of London"), Martines de Pasqually (the "Elu Cohen"); the Swedish-Stuart loyalties were preserved by Carl XIL Carl Gustaf Tessin, Carl Gyllenborg, Emanuel Swedenborg, and Gustaf III.


  1. David Stevenson, The Origins of Freemasonry: Scotland's Century (1590-1710). (Cambridge, 1988), and The First Freemasons: Scotland's Early Lodges and Their Members. (Aberdeen, 1988).
  2. Lisa Kahler, "Freemasonry in Edinburgh, 1721-1746: Institutions and Context" Ph.D. Thesis, (St. Andrews University, 1998).
  3. Stevenson draws on Frances Yates's Giordano Bruno and the Hermetic Tradition, (London, 1964), and The Art of Memory (London, 1966).
  4. Salo Baron, A Social and Religious History of the Jews, 2nd rev. ed. (1937; New York, 1966); Erwin Goodenough, Jewish Symbols in the Greco-Roman Period (New York, 1953); George Sarton, A History of Science (Cambridge, 1959); Mark Wischnitzer, A History of Jewish Crafts and Guilds (New York, 1965).
  5. Elliot Wolfson, Through a Speculum that Shines: Vision and Imagination in Medieval Jewish Mysticism (Princeton, 1994).
  6. Arthur Williamson, "A Pill for Pork-Eaters: Ethnic Identity, Apocalyptic Premises, and the Strange Creation of the Judeo-Scots," in The Expulsion of the Jews: 1492 and After, ed. R.B. Waddington and A.H. Williamson (New York, 1994), 237-58.
  7. D. Stevenson, First Freemasons, 3.
  8. For clear summaries of the revisionists' works, see Maurice Luce, Great Britain's Solomon: James III and I in His Three Kingdoms (Urbana, 1990); Roger Lockyer, James VI and I (1998); Julian Goodare and Michael Lynch, eds., The Reign of James VI (Phantassie, 2000) ; Eveline Cruickshanks, The Glorious Revolution (New York, 2000).
  9. For the architectural-masque culture, see especially Vaughan Hart, Art and Magic in the Court of the Stuarts (London, 1994). For illustrations of its revival in eighteenth-century Swedish Écossais lodges, see Gold und Himmelblau. Die Zeitloses Ideal (Abo, 1993). An attempted revival of this Culture occurred in Britain in the clandestine Jacobite "Rite of Heredom of Kilwinning" (1741-1800).
  10. C. Lance Brockman, ed., Theatre of the Fraternity: Staging the Ritual Space of the Scottish Rite of Freemasons, 1896-1929 (Minneapolis, 1996).
  11. Hartlib Papers: 28/2/81A. Ephermerides : part IV.
  12. C. Josten, Ashmole, 11, 761.
  13. Kincardine MS.5050.f.28 (18 April 1658). Ashmole spent much time at Windsor, while he worked on his history of the Order of the Garter, and Lauderdale spent many years in prison there. The two men became friends.
  14. Kincardine MS.5050.ff.44; see also Goran Behre, "Gothenburg in Stuart War Strategy, 1649-1760," in G. Simpson, Scotland and Scandinavia, 90-99.
  15. L. Nicholas, Nicholas Papers, III, 259.
  16. D. Crips, Elizabeth. 39-50.
  17. Lauderdale, Bibliotheca 1687. G. Burnet, History, 1, 184.
  18. G. Burnet, History 1, 184.
  19. F. Routledge, Calendar...Clarendon, 111, 35, 259, 279.
  20. Clarendon, Henry Hyde, Earl of, The History of the Rebellion and Civil Wars in England, ed. W.D. Macray (Oxford: Clarendon, 1888), V, 170-71, 316, 324-29.
  21. G. Burnet, History, 1, 437-39.
  22. J. Clark, "Lord Burlington," 289-93, 304.
  23. T. Thurloe, Collection, IV, 50, 156, 183.
  24. F. Routledge, Calendar ... Clarendon, 111, 283. General Alexander Hamilton, the Newcastle initiate, died in December 1649.
  25. R. S. Mylne, Master Masons to the Crown of Scotland, 128-29. Spelling modernized.
  26. J. Thurloe, Collection, VII, 416.
  27. Ted Jamieson, General Monck and the Revolution (Fort Worth: Texas Christian University Press, 1975, 11-12.
  28. Hubert Fenwick, Architect Royal: The Life and Works of Sir William Bruce, 1630-1710 (Kineton: Roundwood. 1970), xiii, xvi, 4-9. 11-12.
  29. J. Anderson, Constitutions (1738), 104.
  30. G. Burnet, History, 1, 117-18.
  31. W. Zimmerman, Von den alten zur Neuen Freimaurerei.
  32. C. H. Josten, Elias Ashmole,(1966), p.11
  33. British Library: Evelyn MS.65.
  34. Wren's comment in August 1716; see Thomas Hearne, Reliquiae Hearnianae, 2nd ed., ed. Philip Bliss (London, 1869), 11, 39.
  35. Manuscript presently in Royal Society, London: TNIS. Register Book (C), IX, F.240 52. It was copied into the Register Book circa 1708.
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  37. N. Roth. "Social and Intellectual Currents," 182-83.
  38. L. Wolf, "Jewry," 157.
  39. D. Katz, "Abendana Brothers," 37-38.
  40. G. Black, "Beginnings," 473.
  41. A. Levy, "The Origins of Scottish Jewry". TJHSE, 20 1959-60, 134-35.
  42. D. Katz, Jews in History, 143.
  43. A. Sharie, "Leon," 158.
  44. T. Birch. History, 11, 9.
  45. Jacobi Jehudae Leonis de Templo Hierosolymitano (Helmstadt: Jacob Mullerus, 1665), Libri IV, (d.2)
  46. Reproduced by John Thorpe in "Old Masonic Manuscript. A Fragment," Lodge of Research, No. 2429 Leicester, Transactions for the Year 1926-27, 40-48.
  47. Wallace McLeod, "Additions to the List of Old Charges," AQC. 96 1983. M 99.
  48. D. Stevenson, Origins, 163.
  49. S. Akerman, Christina, 188-91.
  50. H. Oldenburg, Correspondence, 11, 481, 637-111, 447.
  51. Reprinted in R.B. [Nathaniel Cronch], Memorable Remarks Upon the Ancient and Modern State of the Jewish Nation (Bolton: B. Jackson, 1786), 48, 125-63
  52. Zvi Loker, "Juan de Yllan, Merchant Adventurer and Colonial Promoter". Studia Rosenthaliana. 17 (1983), 23.
  53. H. Oldenburg, Correspondence, 111, xxvi-vii, 447,
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  55. Charles Webster, From Paracelsus to Newton (Cambridge UP, 1982),28.
  56. S. Franco. Truth, 58.
  57. John Evelyn, Imposters (1669) p.131 (Clark Memorial Library, 1968)
  58. John Evelyn. The History of the 'Three Late Famous Impostors' (1669), Augustan Reprint Society, 131. (Los Angeles: Clark Memorial Library, 1968)
  59. A. Coudert, Impact, 155-56, 180-81.
  60. Philosophical Transactions, 11, no. 31, pp. 602-04.
  61. Dudley Abrahams, "Jew Brokers of the City of London," MJHSE, III (1937) 87-88.
  62. R. Loeber,Biog. Dict., 25-27.
  63. Roger Boyle, The Dramatic Works of Roger Boyle, Earl Orreg, ed. W.S. Clark Cambridge: Harvard UP, 1937'1, 1. W 11, 601-13.
  64. Correspondence of John Locke, ed. E.S. de Beer (Oxford: Clarendon, 1976), 11, 30: 11, 399-404.
  65. J. Anderson, Constitutions (1738), 105.
  66. J. Evelyn, Diag., IV. 114.
  67. D. Stevenson, Origins, 226 230.
  68. H. Ouston, "York in Edinburgh," 133.
  69. Paul Monod, Jacobitism and the English People, 1688-1788 (Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1989). 303.
  70. F. M. G. Higham, King James the Second. (London: Hamish Hamilton, 1934), 44.
  71. E. Cruickshanks, Glorious Revolution, 47.
  72. M. Glendinning, History, 71-84.
  73. Kincardine NIS-5050 f. 95; Stevenson, Origins.
  74. Sir George Mackenzie, The Science of Heraldry (Edinburgh: printed by the heir of Andrew Anderson, 1680), preface, 2.
  75. Alexander Nisbet, A System of Heraldry, Speculative and Practical (Edinburgh: J. Mackuen, 1722), 114; he utilized Mackenzie's manuscript collections on heraldry.
  76. R. Gould, History, II, 60.
  77. Robert Sibbald, The Remains of Sir Robert Sibbald, Knight, ALD. (Edinburg 1833), 1517, 30.
  78. See Catalogus Bibliothecae Sibbaldiane (Edinburgh, 1707), and Bibliotheca Sibbaldiana (Edinburgh, 1722).
  79. W. S. Craig, History of the Royal College of Physicians, (1976) 61-62.
  80. A. Levy, "Origins," 134-35. Amedeus may have converted to Christianity by this time.
  81. The Count of Gabalis: trans. P. Ayres (London, 1680), Dedication, 1-2.
  82. Allison Coudert, "A Quaker-Kabbalist Controversy: George Fox's Reaction to Francis Mercury van Helmont," JWCI, 39 (1976), 170-89.
  83. D. Stevenson, First Freemasons, 136 39, 142.
  84. James Drummond, Fourth Earl and First Duke of Perth, DVB. For his Masonic affiliation, see John Yarker, "Drummond: Earls of Perth," AQC, 14 1901" 138.
  85. Stevenson, Origins, 147.
  86. B. Little, Wren, 109.
  87. George Hilton Jones, Charles Aliddleton: The Life and Times of a Restoration Politician. (Chicago UP, 1967), 10 -17.
  88. Edward Corp, Lord Burlington: "The Man and His Politics" Lewiston: Edwin Nellen, 1998, 20.
  89. The Diary of Samuel Pepys: 1662 by Samuel Pepys, Robert Latham, William Matthews.
  90. T. Benady, "Role of Jews," 47.
  91. J. C. Riley. "Catholicism and the Late Stuart Army: the Tangier Episode." Royal Stuart Papers XIIII Huntingdon: Royal Stuart Society (1993), 1 28.
  92. J. Evelyn, Diary III, 75, 77, 84.
  93. J. Riley, "Catholicism," 67.
  94. Ensign Bernard Tessin, member of The Tangier Regiment in 1683, was probably Hans Ewald's son. Martin Beckman evidently became a Freemason in Scotland: see Howard Tomlinson, The Ordnance Office and the King's Forts (1610) 1711-1716 (1973), 17.
  95. J. Riley, "Catholicism," 11 12.
  96. For a critical examination of the false accounts given of Charles's conversion, see R. Hutton, Charles II, 443 45.
  97. T. Otway, Works, 11, 457-65.
  98. J. Anderson, Constitutions (1738). 105-06.
  99. Leo Gooch, The Desperate Faction? The Jacobites of North-East England (Hull UP, 1995), 202n.14; also 39, 111.
  100. M. W. Flinn, Men of Iron: The Crowleys in the Early Iron Industry (Edinburgh: Edinburgh UP, 1962), 16, 39-40.
  101. P. A. Hopkins, "Sir James Montgomeric of Skelmorlie," in E. Corp, Stuart Court, 51 56; Mark Goldie, "The Roots of True Whiggism," History of Political Thought, (1980), 228-29.
  102. M. Schuchard "Swedenborg, Jacobitism, and Freemasonry." in Erland Brock, ed., Swedenborg and His Influence (1988), 359-79.
  103. Claude Nordmann, Gustave III: un democrate couronne (Lille: Presses Universitaire, 1986), 214; M. Frank McLynn, Charles Edward Stuart. 1988; Oxford: Oxford UP, 1991, 532-536)
  104. J. Summerson, Architecture in Britain, 1530-1830 (London: Pelican, 19351), 184.
  105. G. Bord, Franc-Maçonnerie, 55-57, Margaret Jacob, Living the Enlightenment: Freemasonry and Politics in Eighteenth-Century Europe (Oxford: Oxford UP. 1991), 92.
  106. Paul Jeffery, The City Churches of Christopher Wren (1996), 28-29.
  107. Charles Trench, Gace's Card: Irish Catholic Landlords, 1690-1800 (Dublin: Mercier, 1997), 34; S. Murphy, "Irish Jacobitism," 74 82.
  108. John Heron Lepper, The Differences Between English and Irish Masonic Rituals Treated Historically, (Dublin: George Healy. 1920), 17, 23, 39.
  109. John Robison, Proofs of a Conspiracy, (1798), 17. Though most historians rightfully scoff at Robison's charges of a Masonic conspiracy in the 1790s, they have not examined his accounts of his personal experiences in Écossais lodges in the 1770s. The latter material is important for its insight into the Scottish-Jacobite traditions that were preserved in various European Masonic rites. These latter descriptions are corroborated by the Continental Masonic documents published in Charles Porset, Les Philadelphes el les Convent de Paris (1998).
  110. J. Swift, Prose, V, 324.
  111. William Temple, Five Miscellaneous Essays, ed. Samuel Holt (Ann Arbor: Michigan UP. 1963), 200-01; "Sir William Temple," DNB.
  112. Arlington, letters, 450.
  113. H. Paton. "Letters from ... Lauderdale," 173, 181, 190, 234-3.
  114. See The Correspondence of Jonathan Swift. ed. Harold Williams (1963), 111, 223, 331: Albert Cherel, Un Aventurier Religieux au XVIIIe Siecle, A.M. Rainvil (1926)
  115. J. Swift, Prose. V. 325 30.
  116. C. Bathain, "Ramsay," 301-02.