The Degrees of the A.A.S.R.F. ( Scottish Rite )

The Degrees of the A.A.S.R.F.

( Focus of the degrees only )

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The whole system of Craft Masonry is intended to present the symbolic idea of man’s pilgrimage on earth.

The publishing of these degrees was first committed to being open to the public in 1955 at the Library of the University of Deleware. permitted by the Supreme Council,33' ( Northern Masonic Jurisdiction, USA ) These are from A Manual for Officers of Subordinate Bodies of the A.A.S.R.F. It is placed here for the benefit of all who wish to understand the meaning of the symbolism that makes the craft what it is. Some things have been omitted but what remains shows the utmost respect and reverence for the Teachers of wisdom who began this effort long before Moses. What is found here cannot be confused with Devil worship or Satanism, because there is no such thing in Masonry.

from Algabil - Freedom Lodge No. 636, Mehlville (St. Louis), Missouri. The First Degree is often referred to as a representation of youth, of the period of learning, or the time for the purification of affections, as the period of preparation for advancement into higher spheres of life here on earth. The Second Degree is often referred to as the representation of the period of adult life, of manhood, a time for increased and enlarged learning and of work. The Third Degree is referred to as symbolic of mature life, of ripened experiences, and a time of continued activities, but of decrease in toil and laborious endeavor. That there should be continued increase in knowledge and wisdom is a prime goal.

Entered Apprentice Degree

Fellowcraft Degree

Master Mason Degree

Also see.. The 'Scottish' Rite of Freemasonry Notes from... THE BOOK OF THE ANCIENT AND ACCEPTED SCOTTISH RITE OF FREEMASONRY: CONTAINING INSTRUCTIONS IN ALL THE DEGREES, FROM THE THIRD TO THE THIRTY-THIRD, AND LAST DEGREE OF THE RITE by Charles T. McClenachan, 33' (Revised and Enlarged Edition, Macoy Publishing and Masonic Supply Company, 45-49 John St., New York, 1914). [ University of Delaware Library, HS 770 .M3 1914 ]

There is no ritual work shown here, only the focus of the degrees.
the 4th - 33{ a small portion of the beginning has been snipped...}

The symbols -Manly P. Hall, 33 Degree, K.T., in his book, The Phoenix: An Illustrated Review of Occultism and Philosophy. The two birds are the Phoenix Bird of Ancient Egyptian Mythology . The body of the Phoenix is one covered with glossy purple feathers, and the plumes in its tail are alternately blue and red. The head of the bird is light in color, and about its neck is a circlet of golden plumage. At the back of its back the Phoenix has a crest of feathers of brilliant color ... The Phoenix, it is said, lives for 500 years, and at its death its body opens and the new born Phoenix emerges. Because of this symbolism, the Phoenix is generally regarded as representing immortality and resurrection ... The Phoenix is one sign of the secret orders of the ancient world and of the initiate of those orders, for it was common to refer to one who had been accepted into the temples as a man twice-born, or reborn. Wisdom confers a new life, and those who become wise are born again." [p. p. 176-77]

3. Master Mason

In the Reception of the 32nd degree ( see below ), the following description of the three craft degrees is given;

" The 1st degree shows you man, such as nature has made him, with no other resources than his physical strength.

The 2nd degree teaches the necessity and holiness of labor, and consequently of knowledge.

The 3rd degree teaches us that our unavoidable destiny is death; but at the same time, in the ceremony and in the very name of Hiram, it shadows forth the great doctrine of another life, and the immortality of the soul."

SECOND SERIES: lodge of perfection -- ineffable degrees ( 4th - 14th )

OFFICERS: ( 1 ) Thrice Potent Grand Master, ( 2 ) Deputy Grand Master, ( 3 ) Senior Warden, ( 4 ) Junior Warden, ( 5 ) Orator, ( 6 ) Secretary, ( 8 ) Master of Ceremonies, ( 9 ) Hospitaller, ( 10 ) Captain of the Guard, ( 11 ) Tyler.

Festivals: Besides the two Sts. John days ( June 24th, December 27th ), Lodge of Perfection commemorate the building of the first temple by the Grand Architect of the Universe ( Tishri 15 ), and remember the destruction of the temple (ab 9).

04. Secret Master

Immediately after the death of Hiram the Builder, King Solomon selected seven of the most worthy and expert Master Masons to guard the Sanctum Sanctorum, and its "sacred furniture." Although only one guard was on duty at a time, their number was always seven -- alluding to the seven cardinal virtues, the seven stages of life, the sabbath ( 7th day ), ect.

The Lodge is hung in black, strewn with white tears. The seven-branched candlestick is burning in the East, and over the East is a large circle composed of a serpent with its tail in its mouth. In the circle, three triangles are interlaced to form a white nine-pointed star. In the center of the star is a Hebrew YOD, and in the nine outer triangles are the letters E,A,J,J,Y,A,O,A,H, which are the initials of the nine sacred words. The Thrice Potent represents King Solomon, and the Senior Grand Warden represents Adoniram, son of Abda, Solomon's Grand Inspector.

BATTERY: (7). In the opening, " The morning star has driven away the shades of night, and the great light begins to gladden our Lodge.

Secret Masters are taught the duty of SECRECY and SILENCE, and pray: Set a watch, O Jehovah! before my mouth, and keep thou the door of my lips." Our heart is truely the "innermost sanctuary," in which we may "prepare to receive the impress of thy Holy Name, which shall be a seal of eternal life." The apron is white and black, with a letter "Z" and an all-seeing eye. The jewel is an ivory key with the letter "Z" on the wards.


This degree, in which Lodges of Sorrow are usually held, recalls the requiem for the departed worthy brother, Hiram Abiff. King Solomon commanded Adonirm to supervise the building of Hiram's tomb or obelisk ( in the west-southwest of the Temple ), made of white marble, to denote his purity, and black marble, to denote his untimely death.

The Lodge is hung with green cloth from eight white colums, and a black altar is in the East, with the coffin of Hiram. The nine-pointed star is now blood-red, and the blood which was spilled in the Temple is in the northeast.

Battery: (4), denoting life, death, virtue, and immortality. The moral of this degree is to pay due respect to the memories of deseased worthy brethern. The apron is white and green, with a cubic stone and a Hewrew YOD. The jewel is a compass open on a segment of a circle, to an angle of sixty degrees.


This degree is not chronologically related to those preceding or following, but relates to an incident which illustrates the mercy and wisdom of King Solomon. The candidate is Joabert, Lieutenant of Solomon's quards, whose execution is demanded by King Hiram of Tyre ( Deputy Grand Master ), because of a misunderstanding. The King of Tyre had visited the Temple unannounced and full of anger concerning a treaty, and Joabert zealously defended his Master from this supposed threat. King Solomon interceded and forgave Joabert's indiscretion, and made him the Witness ( Confidential Secretary ) to the final treaty agreement with the King of Tyre, in the ?ead of the slain Hiram Abiff.

The Lodge is hung in black, strewed with silver tears. Twenty-seven lights ( divided equally between the East, West and South ) are distributed.

Battery: ( 8-1-8-1-8-1 ). The apron is white and red, with Hebrew letters YOD HEH in the center, and a small triangle containing the Hebrew letters ( clockwise from top ) BETH, NUN, and SHIN. The jewel is a gold triangle with the same three letters inscribed. A "sword of defence" is presented to the candidate, with which he can defend his integrity and honor as a Mason.


Upon the death of the Grand Master Hiram, King Solomon appointed seven Judges to mete justice among the workmen of the Temple. Tito, Prince of Herodim, was their Chief Provost and Judge, and their tribunal was held in the Middle Chamber of the Temple. This degree implores the Mason to "render justice to all, to hear patiently, remember accurately, and weigh carefully the facts and the arguments offered."

The Lodge is draped in red, and in the East is a blue, star-shaped canopy. The ebony record-box of the Judges sits under the canopy, and a triangle with the Hebrew words YOD HEH hangs with a balance in the center of the chamber. The seven Judges should be in white robes.

Battery: ( 4-1 ). The three great requisites of a Judge: Justice, Equity, and Impartiality, are symbolized by the triangle and balance. Divine justice is stressed, and the "earth, air, and ocean are the eternal witnesses of the acts that we have done." The Almighty reads from the "vast library" of the air, and metes out the right and just consequences of our actions. The apron is white, edged with red, with a key and five rosettes. The jewel is a golden key.


After the period of mourning following Hiram's death, the building of the Temple had to continue. In this degree, King Solomon appoints and installs five Superintendents to oversee the continuation of the work. Upon the recommendation of the High Priest, Sadoc, and the Governor of the House, Ahishar, the five were chosen to be: (1) Adoniram, President of the Board of Architects ( Master), (2) Joabert, the Phoenician, Chief Artificier in Brass ( S Warden), (3) Stolkin, Chief Carpenter ( J. Warden), (4) Selec, the Giblemite, Chief Stonemason ( Master of Ceremonies), and (5) Gareb, Chief Worker in Silver and Gold, and Engraver ( Captian of the Guard).

The Lodge is hung in red and blue as in the previous degree, with twenty-seven lights -- in three groups of nine forming a triple triangle. Over the Master is a five-pointed star, with three Hebrew YODs inside.

Battery: (5). The number five ( in addition to a five-fold circumambulation), represents the five points of fellowship which are primary tenets of Freemasonry. The charity of love -- the love of life and of God -- is emphasized as "participation of the divine nature." The apron is white, with red and green, with a balance, a five-pointed star as above, and a triangle with the Hebrew letters BETH ( for Ben-khurim), YOD ( for Jakinah ), and ALEPH ( for Achar ). The jewel is a gold triangle with the same three letters.


The three degrees called "Elect" or "Elu" are 09,10,11, and they are concerned with the apprehension of the assassins of Hiram Abiff. Informed by a herdsman that the traitors were hiding in a cave near the coast of Joppa, King Solomon appointed nine Masters to go and find them. One of the elected Masters,

Although Solomon ordered the execution of his favorite for taking justice into his own hands, the other eight interceded, and he was pardoned.

The Lodge is hung in black, strewed with flames ( representing a cavern ) suspended from eight colums. Eight lights in an octagonal pattern surround the triangular slter in the center, and one other light is half-way between the alter and the East. The Lodge is styled a Chapter, and the Master of Ceremonies represents Pharos, the herdsman.

Battery: ( 8-1 ). Master Elects of Nine are Taught to be careful in their zeal, lest they exercise vengeneance " for the violation of divine and human laws." This degree teaches the " overthrow of ignorance by freedom." The apron is white, lined in black, and sprinkled with blood, with an arm holding a dagger, and a severed head held by the hair. The jewel is a dagger, hilt of gold and blade of silver.


About six months after the incidents in the previous degree, on the 15th day of Tammuz, it was learned that the remaining two assassins had fled to Gath, and had begun to work in the quarry of Ben-Dekar. King Solomon, upon hearing this, selected fifteen Masters ( the original nine included ) to apprehend them. After five days searching, they found and seized the traitors, who were brought back to Jerusalem, imprisoned in the tower of Achizar, and executed the following morning.

The Lodge is hung in black, sprinkled with red and white tears. Fifteen yellow candles are present: five in the East and five before each Warden, with four forming a square and one in the center.

Battery: ( 5-5-5 ). The Illustratious Elu of the fifteen are devoted to the cause of the oppressed, and to toleration against intolerance. The fifteen lights are lit in the Opening of this degree, after a prayer to which the Elu devote themselves "To the cause of Free Thought, Free Speech, Free Conscience!" The apron is white, with a black flap, and with three arch-shaped gates -- over each head on a spike. The jewel is a dagger as in the previous degree.


This degree, also called "Sublime Elu of the Twelve," illustrates the reward conferred by King Solomon upon twelve of the fifteen Masters who brought Hiram's assassins to justice. These twelve, chosen by random ballot, are constituted the Governors over the twelve tribes of Israel, and are given the synbolic name "Emeth," meaning a 'true man -- just, fair, sincere, faithful, fearing God."

The Lodge, also called a Chapter, is decorated as in the previous degree, except that there are twelve lights -- making four equilateral triangles of three lights, in the East, West North, and South.

Battery: (12). This degree synbolizes the transformation from mourning for the dead into a new zeal for life, as the ideals of the name "Emeth" signify. The apron is white, lined with black, with a flaming heart in the center. The jewel is a dagger suspended from a black cordon inscribed with the words "Vincere aut Mori," the pledge "that you will rather die than betray the cause of the people, or be overcome through your own fear or fault."

The jewel is a dagger suspended from a black cordon inscribed with the words "Vincere aut Mori," the pledge "that you will rather die than betray the cause of the people, or be overcome through your own fear or fault."


In this degree, Adoniram, son of Abda, is appointed by King Solomon to be the chief Architect of the Temple, and sole successor and representative of the deceased master Hiram Abiff ( Khuram Abai ). This position was created to "assure uniformity in work, vigor in its prosecution, and to reward those more eminent in science and skill." The virtues of Wisdom are those more eminent in science and skill." The virtues of wisdom are also exalted: " by means of her we shall have immortality."

The Lodge, which represents Hiram's Chamber of Designs, is hung in white, strewed with crimson flames. In the North is the North Star and the seven stars of the Great Bear. In the East, Jupiter rises as the morning star over a triangle containing the Hebrew word ADNI, and over five columns of the five architecural orders: Tuscan, Doric, Ionic, Corinthian, and Composite. The Lodge is styled a Chapter.

Battery: ( 5-2 ). In the Opening, the six instructions of a Grand Master Architect are described, and their "lessons" are:

The 'different compasses' teach us that life and time constitute but a point in the centre of eternity; while the circle of God's attributes is infinity."

* The 'parallel ruler' teaches us "that we should be considerate, firm unwavering, and that equanimity of mind and temper which befits a Mason."

* The 'protractor' teaches us " that we should be upright and secure, frank in all our dealings, moderate in professions, and exact and punctual in performance."

* The 'plain scale' teaches us "that we live not only for ourselves, but for others, so as in just and proper measure to serve ourselves, our families, our friends, our neighbors, and our country."

* The 'sector' teaches us "that we should multiply our good deeds, divide that with which we can spare of our substance amoung those who need it more than we, and extract the good that is to benifit and bless us from the reverses and calamities of life."

* The slide-rule' teaches us "that we should strive to grasp and solve the great problem presented by the Universe and involved in our existence; to know and understand the lofty truths of Philosophy, and to communicate freely of our knowledge unto others."

The apron is white, lined with blue and gold ( symbolizing the Craft degrees ), with a protractor, plain scale, sector, and compass. The jewel is a gold triangle, with a Hebrew ALEPH on the obverse and the five types of columns on the reverse.


This degree infact, forms the climax of Ineffable Masonry; it is the keystone of the arch, and discovers that which is revealed in the succeeding degree of Perfection." The history begins with Enoch, sixth in decent from Adam, who was given the True Name of God in a vision. With the help of his son Methuselah, he excavated and built nine "apartments" in Canaan, "one above the other, and each roofed with an arch." Over the upper one he built a Temple, in which he hid a cube of agate, with a triangular plate of gold with the Ineffable Name engraved on it and sunk into one face of the cube.

Enoch also knew of the upcoming Deluge, and he covered his temple with stone, closing it with a great ring of iron. He also placed two columns on a high hill; A granite one engraved with a description of the subterranean vaults, and a brass one engraved with the "rudiments of the arts and sciences." The brass column was found by Noah, but the granite column was washed away by the flood, thus concealing the Name until God told it to Moses ( who again engraved it in gold and placed it in the Ark of the Covenant ) Later, the Ark was lost in a battle with the syrians, but the men of Israel were led to it by the roar of a lion, which had guarded it with the golden key in it's mouth. The treasurer's key thus has the words, "in arc leonis verbum inveni" ( " in the lion's mouth I found the word" ) . Still later, Solomon planned to build his Temple on Mount Moriah. Under it's Holy of Holies, a secret vault was built which could only be accessed via eight other underground vaults. The Ark was placed in this vault, under the "ninth arch," and upon a twisted "Pillar of Beauty" made from white marble. Solomon also began to build a "Temple of Justice," and he selected the site of Enoch's original Temple. Gibulum, Joabert, and Stolkin were chosen to survey and clear the ground, but they made an interesting discovery...( continued in the next degree )

The Lodge ( styled a Chapter ) is hung in red and white. There are nine lights; three in the East, West and South. All officers are in black, except Solomon ( in yellow ) and the King of Tyre ( in Purple ). A seperate apartment should be prepared, covered with a trap-door with an iron ring.

Battery: ( 3-3-3 ). The opening contains lengthy prayers to the Lord, the " Sovereign Inspector and Mighty Architect of the wonders of Creation." The apron is purple, bordered with white, and with the "Enochian delta" ( hexagram with inscribed Tetragrammaton ) in the center. The Jewel is a gold triangle with the Enochian delta on the reverse, and a scene showing two men lowering a third into the newly-discovered subterranean vault, on the obverse.


The ninth arch, or Sacred Vault, was used by Solomon, King Hiram, and Hiram Abiff, in which they held private conferences. After the death of Hiram Abiff, the two kings resolved not to visit the Vault, nor communicate the ineffable Name, until they found a successor. But Adoniram, Joabert, and Stolkin had discovered Enoch's cube of agate, so these these Masters were initiated into this sublime degree in the Sacred Vault, and taught the true pronunciation of the Word. Soon after the Temple was completed ( in the Year Anno Mundi 3000 ), the Babylonian captivity began, and the Temple was destroyed, but the secret Vault was not found. During the Crusades, however, a select few of the Princes of Jerusalem were initiated by some "good and virtuous Masons," allowing the secrets to be handed down until the present day.

The Lodge, cubical in shape, is hung in crimson. Three lights, in a triangle, are in the North; five lights, in a pentagon, are in the South; seven lights, in a heptagon, are in the West; and nine lights, in three triangles, are in the East The Pillar of Beauty is in the Northeast, with the Table of Shewbread and Seven-Branched Candlestick. A "Pillar of Enoch" ( rough-hewn marble pieces put together, with Enochian characters on it ) is in the Southeast, with the Altar of Incense and Tablets of the Law. To the West of the main chamber is the sacred Vault, approached by a long passage of nine arches.

Battery: ( 3-5-7-9 ) The Ten Commandments are recited in the Reception, and are followed by lengthy prayers to the "Almighty and Sovereign Grand Architect of the Universe, hou who ridest in the heavens by the nam Jah." Unity and Charity are stressed, as in the Entered Apprentice degree, and the Word is presented, the "Shem Hamphorosh" ( read right-to-left ):

I, H I, V H I, H V H which sums to 72, the number of the holy angles called "Elect," and the number of steps in Jacob's ladder. Also the following Hebrew letters are presented:





The apron is white silk, bordered in gold, with the Ineffable Delta in the center. The jewel is a quadrant ( compass open to ninety degrees ) topped by a crown, and with a nine-pointed star on the obverse, and a five-pointed blazing star ( with the Tetragrammaton ) on the reverse. The compass is opened on a segment of a circle, inscribed with the numbers 3, 5, 7, 9. The ring contains the inscription "Virtue unites, death cannot seperate." The girdle has nine colors: blue ( friendship ), red ( zeal ), and yellow ( wisdom ); green ( hope ) and purple ( dignity ); white ( purity ) and black ( seriousness and modesty ); stone ( firmness and fidelity ) and flame ( ardent affection and charity ). These are all interwoven with olive green ( peace and brotherhood ).


Festivals: Annual meetings of Councils are held on the 20th day of Tebet ( commemorating the return to Jerusalem from Babylon ), followed by the Grand Feast Day on the 23rd day of Adar ( commemorating the reconstruction of the Temple). Also, the Spring and Autumn Equinoxes are celebrated, "in memory of the Temple having been built twice." Princes of Jerusalem, when visiting inferior Councils or Lodges, are received under the " Arch of Steel."


After the seventy years of the Babylonian captivity, King Cyrus of Persia ( after a prophetic dream ) allowed the release of the 42,360 captives, and their return to Jerusalem. He also permitted the Second Temple to be built, under the direction of Zerubbabel, the Governor of Judea. Upon their journey back, however the release of the captives was contested at the bridge over the Euphrates. Just barely making it to Jerusalem, Zerubbabel ordered that the Masons laying the Temple foundations should work " with the sword in one hand and a trowel in the other," for safety. This degree, and that succeeding it, are thus Chivalric with the initiate serving both as a Craftsman nd a Warrior, Constantly on the alert in both capacities.

There are three "apartments." The first represents a Grand Lodge of Perfection, but it is demolished and desecrated, representing the sorry state found upon the return to Jerusalem. The officers here are the standard Lodge of Perfection officers, all in black robes. The second apartment represents King Cyrus' palace, and is hung in green and decorated in the wear water-green sashes, or "orders." In the third apartment, a "bridge is represented extended over a river, and a rude altar at the end" has been erected. The letters "L D P" are displayed, in the cipher called " Passing the River."

Battery: ( 5-2 ). The virtues of Chivalry are stressed, and the initiate, now a "Knight Mason," is given a water-green sash with a green rosette at the bottom ( in memory of the liberator Cyrus). The apron is of crimson velvet, edged with green, with a bleeding head above two crossed swords, and a triangle ( top point to the left ) with three interlaced triangles inside it. The jewel is three concentric gold triangles, with two crossed swords inside them.


While the foundation of the Second Temple was still incomplete, King Cyrus died, and the Israelites were subjected to the hatred of many tribes of Samaritans and Syrians Eventually, Darius siezed the throne of Persia, via cunning and conspiracy, but he took the side of the Jews. He commanded that the Masons should not be harassed, and he made Zerubbabel "Sovereign Prince of Jerusalem." The Temple was 46 years in construction, and Darius allowed the return of the same "percious vessels" that were taken from the First Temple.

There are four apartments. The first represents the Council of the previous degree, and symbolized the labors endeavoring to rebuild the Temple. There are nine officers here: (1) Most Equitable Sovereign Prince GrandMaster ( a Just ruler), (2) Grand High Priest Deputy Master ( the Eternity of Duty ), (3) Most Enlightened Junior Grand Warden ( the Measure of Peace ), (5) Valiant Keeper of Seals ( the Law ), (6) Viliant Grand Treasurer ( Unbounded Treasure for the Temple ), (7) Grand Master of Ceremonies ( Conductor of the Works ), (8) Grand Master of Entrances ( Guardian of Secrecy ), and (9) Grand Tyler ( Vengenance ).

The second apartment represents the road from Jerusalem to Babylon, which Zerubbabel traveled in the second year of Darius' reign, to petition for protection. The third apartment is Darius' throne room, and is decorated similarly to that of Cyrus. The fourth apartment is Darius' banquet hall.

Battery: ( 1-4 ). Darius poses the question "What is that which holds the most powerful sway over mortals?" The Satrap of Assyria answers "King Darius," the Satrap of Media answers, "Beauty," but Zerubbabel answers , "Truth," The apron is crimson, edged in gold and aurora-color, and with a square, shield, Delta ( with three YOD's ), balance, and a hand of justice. The jewel is a mother-of-pearl lozenge, with a hand holding a balance in equipoise; under it a sword with five stars surrounding the point. On the left is a Hebrew D, on the right is a Hebrew Z.


Officers: The Standard officers, but perfixed by " Faithful Brother" in the 17th, and by Most Perfect Knight" in the 18th. The Wardens are prefixed by " Zealous Brother" in the 17th, and by "Most Excellent and Perfect Knight" in the 18th. The Master is "Venerable" in the 17th ( representing John the Babtist ), and " Most Wise and Perfect" in the 18th ( representing Trishatha ).

Festivals: Chapters must meet five times a year; Ash ednesday, the Thursday before Easter, Good Friday, Easter Sunday, Ascension Day, and Christmas. The principal festival is Holy ( or Maundy ) Thursday, when the officers are elected. A Knight Rose-Croix writes his name in the consonants only, and affixes a triangle topped by a cross ( the G.D. 0=0 altar symbol ) in red ink.


This degree is the first of the Modern or "Accepted" degrees, as opposed to the "Ancient" degrees preceding. " The Word is again lost, and figuratively, the Third Temple -- is to be built and dedicated to the God of Truth." The Christian era brought the growing syncretism amoung the Jews and Egyptians to a head, and it was said that the writings of the Apostles were only an incomplete fraction of the full philosophical and religious teachings and mysteries to be handed down. In the year 1127, Pope Honorius II joined with Stephen, Patrairch of Jerusalem, to ordain Knights to be clothed in the white of purity, and to work to pass down these mysteries under the aegis of Masonry. There were eleven "Knights in the East and West" (commemorating both their home countries and the place of their original initiation ), ordained by Armelfo Guavi Mundos, Prince and Patriach of Jerusalem, in 1118.

The Lodge is heptagpnal in shape, hung with crimson and sprinkeld with stars of gold. Seven "square columns" are in each angle, with the iniitals of the words: Beauth, divinity, Wisdom, Power, Honor, Glory, Force; on their capitals, and the initials of the words: Friendship, Union, Resignation, Discretion, Fidelity, Prudence, Temperance; on their bases.

In the East is an altar atop seven steps, with a vacant throne, the sun and moon, and an hour-glass ( clepaydra ), On the alter is a silver basin with perfumed water, a chafingdish with live coals, and a large book sealed with seven seals of green wax. All twenty-four members ( called a Preceptory ) are clothed in white robes, with a red cross on the breast.

Battery: ( 6 - 1 ). This degree is opened with prayers and hymns, and the candidate is subjected to a strict examination of his knowledge of the previous degree of Ancient Craft Masonry. The candidate is purified and sanctified, and is received under Luther's hymn " From East to West," and Eccesiastes XII. The seven divine virtues and seven human virtues ( on the columns ) are stressed, and the seven vices ( Hatred, Discord, Pride, Indiscretion, Perfidy, Rashness, and Calumny ) are to be avoided. The seven seals ( from the Revelation of St. John are broken and explained, and the candidate is symbolically represented as coming from Patmos, as a "very ancient" man. The apron is of yellow satin, with crimson and gold, and with a sword and Tetractye ( of the Tetragrammaton ) on it. The jewel is a heptagon of silver and gold, with crossed swords abalance on the obverse, and a lamb on the Book of Seven Seals on the reverse. The jewel is hung from a double order -- one black ( left-to-right ) and one white ( right-to-left ), representing good versus evil. A gold coronet is also presented.



The degrees of the Chapter of Rose Croix are commonly called the Philosophical and Doctrinal Degrees. The Chapter of Rose Croix confers the 17° and 18°, and is the spiritual heart of the Scottish Rite. These degrees teach that the only lasting Temple is in the soul of man.

17° Knight of the East and West. The lessons of this degree are that man will fail in efforts that are based on power, greed, and envy; and that divine guidance is needed to keep us from repeating the errors of history.

18° Knight of the Rose Croix of H.R.D.M.. The lessons taught in this degree are that man must have a new Temple in his heart where God is worshipped in spirit and in truth, and that he must have a new law of love with all men everywhere may understand and practice. The degree affirms the broad principals of universality and toleration.

"The stars have disappeared, the light of the sun and moon is obscured, and darkness has fallen upon the face of the earth. "

With these words the candidate is received into the final philosophical degree. The three virtues - faith, hope, and charity - guide him through the "place of horror and gloom" to the Truth, and to the Lost Word. This truth is not that of any one religion, because the spirit of Masonry is universal and inclusive. The "Ceremony of the Table" commemorates this in a feast of Bread and Wine, and the Chapter usually remains at refreshment indefinitely, never closing.

The Lodge is divided into four apartments. The first is hung in black, with white tears, and is lighted by the taper of the Most Wise and the two lights on the throne. This apartment is in ruins, and the throne is surmounted by three crosses, the center is labyrinthian ( to the Northeast of the first ) and contains descending and ascending stairs curving around. The third apartment ( to the Southeast of the first ) is the "Chamber of Reflection," and contains images of death: skeletons and a skull with wings. The fourth apartment is the first, rearranged, with 33 lights ( on three candelabra of 11 branches, and yellow wax candles ), red hangings, and a six-pointed blazing star in the East. A gold crus ansata is also in the East>

Battery: ( 6-1 ). The Most Wise and Perfect Master represents Wisdom, the Senior Warden represents Strength, and the Junior Warden represents Beauty. The apron is of white leather or satin, bordered in red, with a skull and cross-bones, a red passion cross, and three red rosettes. The grand jewel is a gold compass on a quarter circle. A rose-cross is between the legs of the compass, and under it is a pelican, tearing its breast to feed its seven young, on the obverse, and an eagle with wings extended, on the reverse. On the circle are letters I.N.R.I.

The banner of the Rose-Croix is hung in the East, and it is a square of white, edged with gold, with the obverse of the jewel on it, and the words "Lux E Tenebris" above it, and "Faith, Hope, Charity", below it.

The Holy Thursday ceremony involves the "Mystic Banquet" of a white lamb, and also commemorates Passover. After the feast, the "Ceremony Extinguishing the Lights" commences, and the seven officers in reverse order out yellow candles on a seven-branched candlestick. The East of the Lodge contains images of darkness and decay, with a crimson rose surmounting a mountain at the center.

The Easter Sunday ceremony involves a general feast, and the seven lights are re-lit, finishing with: " The doors of the Infinite are opened to you." The East of the Lodge is now clear and bright, with a cross and white rose surrounded by a glory, and a Hebrew YOD at it's center. A seven-pointed lazing star, also with a YOD, is now atop the mountain.


"The Eleven degrees of the Areopagus ... most beautifully unfold the errors and frailities of humanity, and most throughly instruct us how to overcome them and advance toward that most perfect state hoped for by mortality."


Mysteries of time are taught in this degree, under the symbolism of the Apocalypse and the New Jerusalem. The Temple was built not by one man, but by successive generations, and destroyed swiftly. Patience is stressed, along with the three virtues of the previous degrees; and that the greatest accomplishment is the creation of something which will "outlast their own day and generation." Those that exhibit this patience, equity, and purity will surely be one of the chosen 144,000 whose name is inscribed in the apocalyptic Book of Life.

The Lodge is divided into two apartments. The first, the Chapter Room is lit from the East by the triple interlaced triangle, with a sun in the center. Behind a curtain in the East is an image of the New Jerusalem, and an empty salver is in the center of the room. The second apartment is a plain dark room, with only a simple chair. The officers wear long white robes, and fillets of sky-blue satin, with twelve gold stars, around their forheads. There is only one Warden.

Battery: ( 3-3-3-3 ). The Chapter Room is first hung in black, and the sun is turned to blood. After the Reception and Prayer, the room is hung in blue, with stars of gold, and the sun is made bright. There is no apron, but the jewel is a gold "parallelogram" ( rectangle ) with a Greek Alpha on one side and an Omega on the other.


"The duties, powers and privileges of a Master in opening and closing a Lodge and conducting the work are herein defined" The Master AdVitam ( for life ) must keep in mind the three requisits of a Master, Toleration, Justice, and Truth, and as Master of a Lodge, he must "despense light and knowledge to the brothern." The proliferation of degrees and religious sactarianism is to be avoided, and Masonry must be restored to it's "primitive purity." The existing degrees are, in actuality, constant lessons, and titles such as "knight," "Prince," and "Pontiff" represent the lofty goals of morality and justice, of which the holders of such titles should be reminded.

The Lodge is hung in blue and gold, and a throne is in the East, ascended by nine steps. Over the East are the words, "fiat Lux" in a glory surrounding a triangle. A triangular altar is in the center, and the lodge is lit by nine yellow candles ( in three concentric triangles ), positioned between the altar and the South.

Battery: ( 2-1 ). The apron is yellow, bordered in blue, with three concentric point-down triangles, with the Tetragrammaton ( horizontal ) and "Fiat Lux" ( vertical ) at the center, forming a cross. It's shape relates to the "fourth great light, which reminds us of the Deity and his attributes." The jewel is gold, with the same three concentric triangles.


This degree is based on the order of Knights, known in Germany as the Holy Vehme justice fiercely and morally. They inculcated humility, and constantly remembered the price of pride, exacted upon the decendents of Noah who erected the Tower of Babel. Today, this Order only claims jurisdiction amoung its own members, and their rule and duty is to judge others by the same rules by which they live. They meet on nights of the full moon, from the ancient custom of the worship of Isis and Ceres, and also from the original knights, who desired secrecy.

The Lodge, styled a Grand Chapter, meets in a "retired place," on the night of the full moon, which is the only ight allowed. The presiding officer, the "Lieutenant Commander, " faces the moonlight. The brethren are styled "Prussian Knight-Masons," and all are dressed in black. No Table Lodges are to be held in this degree.

Battery: ( 3 ). "In the heavenly host ( light of the moon ) they admire work of the Supreme Creator, and the universal laws of harmony and motion -- the first two laws that emanated from God." The apron is yellow, and contains an arm holding a sword, and a winged figure holding a key in the left hand, and the right forefinger on the lips ( the "Egyptian figure of Silence") The jewel is an point-up triangle, with an arrow, point downward, an arm holding a sword, and the motto "Fiat Justitia, Ruat Coelum."


This degree teaches that all labor is honorable, and the "toiling millions" should be respected and assisted. The Phoenicians, especially those of the city of Tsidun, are remembered as those who cut cedars on Mount Libanus ( Lebanon ) for Noah's ark, as well as the Ark of the Covenant and the Temples of Jerusalem. The peoples of Phoenicia, Hiram of Tyre and Hiram Abiff included, were tied to the Israelites by the fact that they shared the mysteries, and it is even said that the Etrurian and Roman Colleges of Artificers descended from them via the Hyksos.

The Lodge styled a College, has two apartments. The first is a plain room which represents a workshop on Mount Libanus. Here, the Senior Warden, or Master Carpenter," presides. The second apartment is hung in red, lighted by 36 lights, and is called the Council-room of the Round Table. The brethern sit at a round wooden table, and the altar in the East holds the three great lights and an axe.

Battery: ( 2-2-2 ). The apron is white, bordered in purple, and contains a three-headed serpent and a table with instruments and plans on it. The jewel is an axe and handle of gold. On the top of the handle are the initials of Noah and Solomon. In the middle of the handle are the initials of Libanus and Tsidun. On the blade are the initials of Adoniram, Cyrus, Darius, Zerubbabel, Nehemiah, Ezra ( on one side ), and Shem, Kham, Yapheth, Moses, AHaliab, Betselal ( on the other ).


This degree, connected with the one succeeding it, is based on the perfection and purity of the Hebrew Tabernacle, or Sanctuary. "Unholy sacriledge and presumptions interference with sacred ceremonies are forbidden and punished; and only those with hearts divested of all impurity, are commended in the performance of Holy rites."

The Lodge, styled a Court, has two apartments. The first, for the Reception, is a small dark room with an alter at the center, upon which is a dim light and three skulls. In front of the alter is a skeleton. The second apartment represents an encampment of the Twelve Tribes of Israel, near Sinai. The Tribes are arranged, with standard ( of specified color and device ) clockwise from the East, as the following:

Judah Crimson stripes Lion, couchant
Zebulon light green Ship
Simeon Yellow Sword
Reuben Brilliant crimson Man
Gad bluish green Starry Field
Manasseh agate Vine
Ephraim opal Bull
Benjamin violet Wolf
Asher blue Tree
Dan gold-stone Eagle holding serpent
Naphtali bluish green Running doe
Issachar greenish yellow Ass, couchant

In the center of the court is a representation of the Tabernacle of Moses, described in Exodus 23 and 36. The Master, the "Most Excellant High Priest," represents Aaron, and the two Wardens, in the West, represent Eleazar and Ithamar. The three wear white turbans, with a blue ribbon with the Hebrew inscription, QDSh L-IHVH, "Holy to the Lord!" All others are syled "Worthy Levites".

Battery: ( 2-2-2-1 ) The apron is white, bordered with red, blue and purple ribbons. These three colors, from the curtains of the Tabernacle, represent earth, fire, air, and sea, respectively, as well as the Lord's benificence, glory, wisdom, and power. On the apron is the golden seven-branched candlestick, representing the seven planets and virtues: Sun, faith ( "aspiration toward the infinite" ) Moon, hope, Venus, charity; Mars, fortitude ( victory over rage and anger" ); Mercury, prudence; Saturn, temperance; Jupiter ( conquerer of the Titans ), justice. The jewel is a small silver censer, ornamented cup, held by a handle in the shape of an open hand.


This degree illistrates the sacerdotal duties of the High Priest, of which there are two: incessant labor for the glory of God, honor of country, and happiness of brethern; and offering up thanks and prayers to God, in lieu of actual sacrifices. The initiate must possess the lamp ( reason ), the cloak ( liberty ), and the staff ( forces of nature ), and each of these is threefold, making the holy number nine -- the number Hermes allotted to initiation. These correspond also with the three great lights. The powers of the Sphinx are also inculcated, and the cube ( as the symbol of nature's immutable law ) is presented with the Tetragrammaton. The law of eqilibrium is applied to ritual, and the initiate is urged to interpret the symboly he receives for himself. The "inner" ( solar ) mysteries of Osiris ( Thammuz, Bel, Atys, Dionusos, Cama, Mithras ) are then rehearsed.

The Lodge , styled a Court, has two apartments. The first Vestibule, is furnished as a Master Mason's Lodge, except that the Volume of Sacred Law is a rolled parchment of Law, and the "G" in the East is replaced by a Hebrew YOD. The second apartment is the Tabernacle of the previous degree, but with a vermillion "blazing star" ( pentagram ) in the East, with an Alpha and Omega on it.

Battery: (2-2-2-1 ). The apron is of white lambskin, with scarlet, green and blue. On it is a violet myrle tree, and a gold representation of an Arabian tent. The jewel is the Hebrew letter ALEPH, suspended from a violet ribbon.


After the death of Aaron, when the new moon occurred at the vernal equinox of the 40th year of the Wandering of Israel, the people became discouraged, and began to pray to Amum and Astarte, Osiris and Isis. But Adonai ( God ) sent fiery serpents amoung them, and Moses was asked to pray for the people. Moses was told to build a brazen serpent, and put it on a pole, and all who looked upon it were cured of the serpent's venom.

This story is seen as an allegory for the transformation from winter to spring ( and Passover ), when the celestial serpent and scorpion flee "before the glittering stars of Orion." The seeming contradiction between winter and spring, death and life, evil and good, should be seen as two parts of the "universal equilibrium." The symbol of the cross, "that *one* composed of *two*," represents this principle.

The Lodge, styled a Council, is the Tabernacle of the preceding degree, but with a cross ( with a serpent coiled round it ) in the East. Columns topped by serpents are next to the Master ( the "Most Puissant Leader," Moses), the Senior Warden ( the most Valiant Captain of the Host," Joshua,), and the Junior Warden ( the "Illustrious Chief Prince of the Tribes. " Caleb)> Brethern are styled " Brother Knight."

Battery: ( 5-3-1 ). The Knight's duties are; "To purify the soul of its alloy of earthliness, that through the gate of Capricorn and the seven spheres it may at length ascend to its eternal home beyond the stars; and also to perpentuate the great truths enveloped in the symbols and allegories of ancient mysteries." The apron is white, lined in black, and with gold stars on the white side ( Pleiades, Hyades, Orion, Capella ) and with silver stars on the black side ( Perseus, Scorpio, Bootees ) Also on it is a serpent, outoboros, surrounding a scarab, a triangle in a glory with the Tetragrammaton in its center, and the four initials of the stars Regulus, Aldebaran, Antares, and Fomalhaunt. The jewel is a gold tau cross ( cruxansata ) with a serpent entwined around it, and the Hebrew words HLThI ( "he has suffered or been wounded") and NChShThN ( "the Brazen Serpent" ) on it. The order has two ribbons: one crimson, with the words "Osiris, Ornuzd, Osar siph, Moses" a bull and crescent, and the Hebrew word GBVRH ( "Valor" ) and one white, with the words "Isis, Ceres, " a dog's head and crescent, and the word AVN ( "Vitrue") -- contrasting active/generative energy and passive/"capacity-to-produce" Energy.

26. PRINCE OF MERCY, or SCOTTISH TRINITARIAN ( "Abraham Lincoln Degree" )

To avoid persecution, early Christian Masons ( under the rule of Domitian ) met in the Catacombs under Rome, and preformed the mysteries under cover of darkness. The "Triple Covenant" is represented by those of Noah and Abraham, as well as "that made with all the earth, that the day should come when light, truth, and happiness should be victorious over darkness, error, and misery." The candidate is named Constans" ( firm, intrepid and perserving ) and is symbolically receiving the third and last degree of the Essenian Mysteries -- that of "theogenesis" ( divine generations )

The lodge, styled a Chapter, is hung in green ( represening infinite wisdom ) with nine colums of red ( representing supreme power or energy ) and white ( representing harmony ). The throne in the East is covered by a canopy of green, red , and white, and above it is the triple-interlaced triangle, with two white and one black triangles, and a YOD at its center. By the triangular alter, in the center, is a white marble Statue of a virgin, covered by thin white gauze.

Battery: ( 3-3-2-3-3-1 ). The candidate is presented with the "ancient dogmas and teachings" of the Hindus, Buddhists, Mithraists, 'Druids' ( Norse ?), Egyptians, Hebrews and Christians, and that "in all ages the golden threads of truth have gleamed in the woof of error. Fortunate is the Mason who, by the light of wisdom, the true Masonic light, second emanation from the Deity, can discern the golden threads, God's hieroglyphs, written when time began; and read them aright, as they were read by our ancient brethren in the early ages!" The mystery of life, death and rebirth is presented using the metaphor of seeds and plants. The apron is scarlet, bordered in white, with a green triangle ( point down ) in the center. In the triangle are the initials of Force, Wisdom, and Harmony, and a flaming heart of gold with the initials I.H.S. ( Jesus ) Hominum Salvator; or Imperium, Harmonia, Sapientia ). The jewel is gold, and is the same triangle, suspended by a purple ribbon. A "tessera," or mark, is given to the candidate, and is a small fish of ivory or mother-of-pearl, with the Tetragrammaton on one side, and mystic symbols ( right angles, parallel lines, ect.) on the other.


This degree, the first strictly chivalric degree, commemorates the siedge of St. Jean d Acre, the ancient Ptolemais, by Christian forces. The Crusaders, afflicted with harsh famine and intense heat, and to fight infidel Saladin by day, and nurse their wounds and sick at night, under a makeshift tent made from the sails of their ships. In 1192, Pope Celestin III approved a new Hospitaller and Military Order comprised of the primarily German " Teutonic Knights," combining the Statues of the Augustinians, the Hospitallers of St. John, and the Templars. They distinguished themselves by the wearing of black crosses and white mantles but gave up the latter to avoid conflict with the Templars. They relocated to Prussia in 1226.

The Lodge, styled a Chapter, is hung is scarlet, sprinkled with black tears. Black columns surround the Chapter in a circle, and three circles of lights above each other ( comprised of six, nine and twelve, from top to bottom )are in the East. In the center is a round table, with five olive-oil lamps in a cross, and the Commanders of the Order sit at this table. In the West are the sentences: "In many words thou shalt not avoid sin," and "Life and death are despensed by the tongue."

Battery: ( 4-3-2 ). A dirge is sung in the reception, and five trophies are presented to the initiate: (1) a garland of laurel, (2) the Apron, gloves, collar, sash, and jewel of the Order - the colors of which are white, red and black, (3) the sword of a knight, (4) the spurs of a knight, and (5) the pallium or mantle of the Order, with the black cross. These five trophies, and the five lamps, correspond to the five excellant quanities: Humility, Temperance, Chastity, Generosity, and Honor. The apron is of scarlet lambskin, lined in black, with a Teutonic Cross ( cross potent sable, charged with a smaller cross double potent or, surcharged with the escutcheon of the Empire - the two-headed black eagle ) and a black key surrounded by a laurel wreath. The jewel is a gold triangle, on which the word I.R.N.I. is enamelled.


This degree, which is the last philosophical degree of the A.A.S.R.F., derives its doctrine from Hermeticism, the Kabala, and Magism. The Absolute,i.e, that which exists through itsself, is taught to be Reason, and that evil and misery are necessary discords "that unites with the concords of the universe to make one great harmony forever." The symbolism of the Tempels of Thebes and Memphis, the Temple of the Sun at Nineveh, and the white dove (Zoroaster, good, Cheses ) and black raven ( Manes, evil, Gevurah ) are all presented, and interpreted in the light of "uncreated reason," of which the primary symbol is the Sun.

The lodge, styled a Council, is hung in natural colors, representative of the open countryside, and is illuminiated by a great globe suspended in the South. In the East is the seal of the Macrocosm ( the hexagram of Solomon ), with the up-pointing triangle in black and the down-pointing triangle in white, and under the words "Lux e Tenebris." In the West is the seal of the Microcom ( Pentagram ) in white and vermillion. In the South is a representation of the Temple of Solomon, with a man holding a lamb between the columns of Jachin and Boaz. In the North is a symbol from the Zohar, with two man's heads and arms forming a hexagram. In each corner is a triangle, white, black, red, with the Hebrew letters YOD, HEH, and VAV on it. The alter, in the center, is "Soli Sanctissimo Sacrum," sacred to the most holy sun, and contains a pentagram along with the book of constitutions, and a censer.

The Master is styled " Father Adam," and wears a saffron robe. One Warden, styled "Brother Truth," is in the West, and wears a rose robe. Seven other officers, styled MLAKVTh kings, envoys, angles ) , are stationed about the Temple, and wear flame-colored robes:
Gabriel Jupiter Crimson & Silver Eagle Tin N.E.
Michael Saturn Black & silver Lion Lead S. E.
Auriel Mars Flame & Gold Bull Steel S. W.
Raphael Mercury Green & Gold Man Glass & quicksilver N. W.
Zarakhiel Sun purple & Gold Gold E.
Tsaphiel Moon White & Gold Silver W.
Hamaliel Venus blue & Silver Copper S.

The other members of the Council, of which there must be ten in all, are styled Aralim ( Lion of God, or hero ), and ear no robe. Of these, there must be a Herald Expert Tiler.

Battery: ( 3-4 ). The apron is white lambskin, with a vermillion pentagram. The jewel is a golden sun on the obverse, and a hemisphere, showing the northern half of the ecliptic ( Tarus to Libra ) and Zodiac. Of the large amount of instruction in this degree, seven , main points are outlined:

(1) " Science is preserved by silence, and perpetuated by initiation."
(2) " Make gold potable, and you will have the universal medicine," which evidences that one should appropriate truth to ones own use, and that the changes known as death are part of life.
(3) "The permanent revelation, one and universal, is written in visible nature, is explained by reason, and completed by the wise analogies of faith."
(4) "There is no invisible world. There are only different degrees of prefection in the organs," and " There is no void in nature; all is peopled."
(5) "Thoughts, once uttered, are immortal....How could the thoughts exist, if the soul from which they emanated were to cease to be?"
(6) " Nature is the primary, consistent, and certain revelation or unveiling of God. It is his utterance, word and speech."
(7) "Analogy is the last word of science, and the first of faith. Harmony is an equilibrium; and equilibrium subsists by the analogy of contraries. The absolute unity is the supreme and last reason of things."


This degree, also known as the Order of Knights Ecossals, teaches equality and toleration in matters of the class and religion. Hugh of Tiberias, Lord of Galilee, visits the Court of Saladin, the Sultan of Egypt and Syria, and they instruct each other in their concepts of Chivalry and religion. The cross of St. Andrew ( cross saltire ) is an emblem of suffering and humility, and the crucifiction of St. Andrew on November 30th is to be commemorated.

The Lodge, styled a Chapter, has two apartments. The first, the Chapter-room represents Saladin's court, and is hung in green and gold. In each corner is a St Andrew's cross. The second apartment contains a basin for washing, a table, and a sword, and the candidate must be baptised by the washing of the hands and face before entering into the Order of Knighthood. The Master of Ceremonies represents Saladin, while the Venerable Grand Master represents Hugh. The Senior Warden is Malek Adhel ( just king ), the Junior Warden is Malek Modaffer ( victorious knight ), the Senior Deacon is Malek Daher ( triumphant king ), and the Junior Deacon is Malek Afdel ( excellent king ). Behind the throne is a white banner, in the shape of a shroud, with the words " Salah-eddin, king of kings -- Salah-eddin, victor of victors -- Salah-eddin must die."

Battery: ( 2-3-4 ). Religious tolerance is the main lesson, and "Masonry is the hand maid of religion." There is no apron. The Jewel has two parts: On top is a gold hexagram, made of concave-outward triangles, with a compass open to 25 degrees inside it. On the bottom is suspended a gold St. Andrew's cross ("X"), with a knight's helmet, winged serpent ouroboros, key and a point-down triangle. In the center of the cross is a Hebrew YOD, and on its points, clockwise from bottom , the Hebrew letters N M I N.



The chivalric degrees bring to an end the instruction of Masonry, and rehearses the virtues, vows, and tenets of the order. These form Templars degrees of the A.A.S.R.F.

"The accomplishments of these degrees brings us to the completion of the Third Temple; and the Royal Secret is solved, as to wheather we have made this world a Temple fit for the abiding-place of the Grand Architect of the Universe."


This "practical trial degree of the Knight Templar," also as a Knight soldier of the Cross, contains some of the historical drama of the Templars. Incidents on the road to the Holy Land, as well as the execution of Jacques de Molay, are presented. Knights Kadosh ("holy, "consecrated," or "seperated" ) are true defenders of the Temple: outwardly armed with steel, but inwardly armed with Faith in God and Love of his fellow-man.

The Lodge, styled a Chapter, is decorated with black and red columns. There are five chambers. The first, the Judge Hall, is sombre and lit by a singular suspended triangular lamp. Five masked judges, robed in black and girded with swords, receive the candidate. Second, the Cave, or Chamber of Reflection, is "strewed with emblems of mortality," and is connected to the first by a descending flight of stairs. This chamber represents the tomb of Jacques de Molay, and contains a simple alter, cup of wine, and a gong. The remaining chambers are the Forum, the Senate Chamber, and the Road to the Holy land. Overall, in the East is a Throne surmounted by a double-headed eagle, crowned with a Teutonic cross and a point-down triangle containing a blazing Hebrew ADNI, and the words "Nec proditor, Nec proditor, Innocens feret." Behind the thrown are two banners: One white with a green Teutonic cross, and the words "Deus Vult;" and the other with a red cross and a double-headed eagle, and the words "Aut vincere, Aut mori." The Master is styled the Grand Commander, and is flanked by the Grand Chancellor and the Grand Architect.

Battery: ( 6-1 ). Aside of the Temple legend, much of the instruction of this degree is codified in the symbol of the "Mysterious Ladder," which has two supports and seven steps, and is kept veiled until the candidate is obligated. The supports are called O.E. ( "Oheb Eloah," love of God )and O.K. ( Oheb Karobo," love of our Neighbor ) , and the seven steps contain the names of the sciences: astronomy, music, geometry, arithmetic, logic, rhetoric, and grammar ( from the bottom up ), as well as seven sets of ( illegible ) Hebrew words. There is no apron, but the jewel is a gold Teutonic cross, enamelled in red, with the letters J.'.B.'.M.'. on the obverse, and a skull transpierced by a poinard on the reverse.


" The practical test of the neophyte in the degree of Knight Kodosh, is in this degree of Inquisitor Commander changed to a thorough examination under charges against Masonic Law and duty before the Order of the Five Brethren." The candidate is on trial, primarilly by the "one infallible, unerring Judge" of Diety, but also by the accumulated history of human lawgivers -- handed down from King Alfred the Saxon, Socrates, Confucius, Minos, Zoroaster, and Moses. If found worthy, the virtues of repentance and forgiveness are proclaimed, and the candidate is advanced.

The Lodge, styled a Supreme Tribunal, is hung in white. There are ten guilded columns, and the words, "Justitia" and "Equitas" in the East, as well as the Tetractys of Pythagoras. In the West, over the Counsellors ( i.e. Wardens ), are the words, "Lenitas" and "Misericordia," as well as the sacred word of the 18th degree in gold. The Master is styled the Most Perfect President, and is flanked by a Defender on his right and ad Advocate on his left.

Battery: (?). No apron is worn in the Supreme Tribunal, but in inferior bodies, a white sheep-skin apron with a silver utonic cross may be worn. The jewel is a silver Teutonic cross. The jewel may be supended from a white collar, with a gold triangle with a "31" inside it. But in inferior bodies it may be suspended from a golden chain, the links of which form the eight fundamental degrees of Masonry: The 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 14th, 16th, 18th and 30th.


This degree, originally a Christian degree of Knighthood, "consummates the Templarism of Masonry." Only " a lover of wisdom and an apostle of Liberty, Equality and Fraternally" is eligible to partake of this exalted degree, which is military in character ( as the previous degree was judicial). Chivalric nature of Masonry is explained by the Knightly Armor of the Templar, which is buckled upon the novitiate piece by piece.

The lodge, styled a Consistory, is hung in black, strewed with silver tears, skulls and cross-bones, and skeletons. In the East is a throne, ascended by seven steps, and draped in black satin with flame tears. An alter before the throne is also draped in black satin, with a skull and cross-bones, and the letter J above it, and the letter M below it. In front of each Warden in the West is a table, covered in crimson, ith crossed swords and the letters "N-K .'.M-K,.'.". Also in the West is the "Camp of the Princes:" a nonagon, which encloses a heptagon, which encloses a pentagon, which encloses a triangle, which encloses a circle with a cross inside it. On the sides of the nonagon are nine Tents, each denoted by a letter, a flag and pennon, a Commanding Officer, and assigned to certain degrees of the A.A.S.R.F:

Letter FLAG and PENNON CAMP OF... Commanding Officer
S White & crimson 18th, 17th Malachi
A Green 16th, 15th Zerubbabel
L Red 14th Nehemiah
I Black & red 12th Joabert
X Black 11th, 10th, 9th Paleg
N Red & black 8th Jehoiab
O Red & green 7th, 6th Aholiab
N Green 5th, 4th Joshua
I Blue 3rd, 2nd, 1st Ezra

On each of the external sides of the pentagon are five Standards, each with colored fields, devices, mottos, bearers, and assigned to certain degrees of the A.A.S.R.F.:

Field Color Device Degrees Borne by
T Purple Ark of the Covenant 30th, 29th Bezaleel
E Blue Gold Lion with Key 28th, 27th, 26th Aholiab
N White Flaming heart with Black wings 25th, 24th, 23rd Mah-Shim
G Green Black two-headed eagle 22nd, 21st Garimont
U Gold Black ox 20th, 19th Amariah

Mottos: 1. " Laus Deo"
2. "Custos Arcani" "Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam"
3. "Arrdens Gloria Surgit"
4. " Corde Gladio Potens"
5. "Omnia Tempus Alit"

Inside the triangle are encamped the Princes of the Royal Secret and Grand Inspector Commanders, "with such Knights of Malta as, having proved themselves true and faithful, may have been received amoung us." Inside the circle are the five Inspectors General who serve as Lieutenant Commanders under the Most Puissant Sovereign Grand Commander.

Battery: ( 1-4 ). The apron is white, lined in black, with a double-headed eagle and a plan of the Camp of the Princes. The jewel is a golden Teutonic cross, with a double-headed white and black eagle in the center.


This degree, mainly executive in character, "is conferred as an honorarium on those who for great merit and long and arduous services have deserved well of the Order." The mottos of this degree are "Deus Meumque Jus," "Unio. Tolerario. Robur.," "Ordo ab Chao," "S.A.P.I.E.N.T.I.A.," and "Ad Universi Terrarum Orbis Summi Architecti Gloriam."

The Lodge, styled a Supreme Council, is hung in purple, with skeletons and skulls and cross-bones. A Magnificent throne with a purple and gold canopy is in the East, and a delta with the "Ineffable characters" is beneith it. In the North is a skeleton holding the white banner of the Order ( with a black double-headed eagle, and gilded in gold ) , and in the South is the flag of the country. The Lodge is lit by eleven lights ( five in the East, three in the West, one in the North, and two in the South ).

the commanding colors of Various Series of AASRF Degrees;

Series Color
1st Symbolic Blue
2nd Ineffable Crimson
3rd Historic Light Green on Orange
4th Philosophic White sprinkled with crimson
5th Historic & Philosophic Purple
6th Chivalric White & Black
Inspector General White


by Supreme Council, 33' (Northern Masonic Jurisdiction, USA, 1955).

University of Delaware Library, HS 774 .A5 1955

* Batteries for "Grand Honors "

Lodge of Perfection..............[ 3, 5, 7, 3 - 3 - 3 ]

Council of Princes of Jerusalem ...............[ 4 - 1 ]

Chapter of Rose-Croix..........................[ 6 - 1 ]

Consistory of Sublime Princes of the Royal Secret .[1-4]

Motto of the 33rd Degree: "Deus Meumque Jus" From the French, "Dieu et mon Droit" ("God and my Right" ),which was Richard I's battle-cry at Gisors in 1193.

* Masonic Calendar:

Royal Arch- Capitular:..Anno Inventionis.........530 + AD

Royal & Secret Masters - Cryptic: Anno Depositionals 1000 + AD

Knights Tempiar - Chivalric:.....Anno Ordinis...1118 - AD

Anne Benefacio..................................1913 + AD

A.A.S.R.Anno Mundi..............................376O + AD

Blue Lodge .......Symbolic: Anno Lucis..........4000 + AD

Anno Lucuis is the "Year of Light". Anne Inventionis is the "Year of Discovery", or the building of the 2nd Temple. Anno Benefacio is the "Year of Blessing" of Abraham by Melchizedek.

Anne Depositionis is the "Year of Deposit", or the completion of Solomon's Temple. Anne Mundi, or the "Year of the World", is analogous to the Jewish calendar (with an extra year to be added after September)

In comparison the Degrees of the York Rite contain these Divisions

Chapter of Royal Arch Masons

Chapter and Council or 'Capitular Degrees'

  • Mark Master
  • Past Master
  • Most Excellant Master and Royal Arch Mason

The Council of Royal and Select Masters


  • Royal Master
  • Select Master
  • Super Excellant Master

Commandry of the Knights Templar

  • Illustrious Order of the Red Cross
  • the Order of the Knights of Malta
  • the Order of the Knights Templar

A collection of unused rituals
The Official Transaction of the Grand College of Rites of the United States of America

Unveiling of the Royal Arch Standards
Written by Companion David L. Gray (10/25/99)

More on the Scottish Rite Degrees Orlando Scottish Rite

Try my Site Map Page for more information.

Knights Templar
Knights, page 2

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