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As some works frequently alluded to in this volume, may not be familiar to readers in general, it is requisite to describe them more particularly than was convenient to do when making references to them. In fact, often the names of the authors only are mentioned; of such, therefore, I will here give the titles more fully, with the dates of the editions.
The work of Bailey, from which many quotations are made, is entitled " An Universal English Dictionary of Words, and of Arts and Sciences, illustrated with 260 cuts." London, 1759. This is a continuation of his etymological dictionary, but entirely distinct from that work.
“An Exposure of Freemasonry;" published in London, 1825, in a periodical, entitled "The Republican," edited by Richard Carlile.
"Light on Masonry." By Elder David Bernard : Utica, 1829. This work contains an exposition of 48 degrees of Freemasonry.
“A Ritual of Freemasonry, illustrated with numerous engravings." By Avery Allyn : Boston, 1831. This volume treats of 33 degrees of the order.
Volnoy's Ruins, here made use of, is the New-York edition of 1828.
ERRATA.-Many errore, which may appear in some copies, were corrected after a few sheets were struck off. Those which mar the sense, and mistakes in the spelling of classical words, as well as others in the learned languages, which the general reader could not correct, will alone be taken notice of.
For Et foror and conjux, Page 22, Line 13, read, Et soror et conjux.-p. 28, 1. 10, repofitum and Ofiridis; repositum, Osiridis.-p. 11, l. 38, Nemefis; Nemesis.---p. 30, 1. 32, Jevov; Jehov.-p. 35, 1. 26, that their founder of colony; that founder of their colony.-p. 40, 1. 9, Dionyisus; Dionysins.--p. 41, 1. 10, Sabio; Saboi. –p. 49, l. 27, Hannadi; Hannabi.- p. 52, l. 12, Dædalus; Dædalus.-p. 56, l. 7, Pegassus; Pegasus. -p. 56, l. 13, Stabro; Surabo.--p. 86, 1. 14, covering; convening.-P. 86, l. 15, That; Thus.
N. B. Ibid., page 152, line 10, refers to Moore's Epicurean, to which the preceding extract from Dupuis should have been credited.
The running title of Ch. III, should have commenced at page 142, instead of 156.
In page 318, the Defence of Freemasonry is referred to as having been before noticed, whereas that article was printed subsequently
The extract commencing at page 333, and ending at 335, should be credited to Fontenellola History of Oraclos.
INDEX TO CHAPTER I.
DEGREES IN FREEMASONRY, OF WHICH NOTICE 16 TAKEN IN THIS VOLUME.
The original object of the secret rites of freemasonry has been a subject of inquiry for upwards of six hundred years, and the enigma seems not to have been satisfactorily solved. The initiated, as well as those without the pale of the order, are equally ignorant of their derivation and import. What mote it be? is a question as difficult of solution now as when first propounded by king Henry VI. of England.
The intention of this work is to endeavor to unravel the intricate web in which the mystery is involved, by tracing the order back to its source, and, by showing its intimate connection and similitude to institutions more ancient, put it beyond a doubt, that it sprang from, and is a continuation of the rites and ceremonies observed in those establishments.
Had a work, taken notice of by the Abbe Barruel, fallen into the hands of the editor, he would probably have been saved much trouble in the prosecution of this research.—“ We recommend, says he, to our reader to peruse the treatise of a most learned and zealous mason, dedicated Demen die es Verstehen, or To those who can understand. He leaves no stone unturned throughout antiquity to prove the identity of the ancient mysteries of Eleusis, of the Jews, of the Druids, and of the Egyptians, with those of freemasonry.”
In pursuance of this course, it becomes necessary to take a transient view of the dogmas and customs of Egypt in the remotest periods of its history; for it appears evident, that this country was the salient point from which the religious observances of the ancient world commenced.
What are emphatically called the mysteries, is but another name for religion ; and an exposition of what they consisted, is of course embraced in the subject as forming a parallel with the rites of masonry. Independent of the main design of the work, these topics in themselves possess great interest as matters of curiosity; which is enhanced by observing the close affinity which they bear to the practices of the masonic order at the present day.
“ Among all the ancient nations which have been distinguished in history, there is none more worthy of our notice than the kingdom of Egypt. If not the birth-place, it was the early protector of the sciences; and cherished every species of knowledge, which
; was known or cultivated in remote times. It was the principal source from which the Grecians derived their information; and, after all its windings and enlargements, we may still trace the stream of our knowledge to the banks of the Nile.” (New Edinb. Ency.)
Whatever may be thought of the doctrines of the mysteries, they enforced the principles of morality by the most terrific scenical representations of the torments of the wicked on the one hand, and of the most pleasing spectacles of the happiness of the righteous on the other, in a future life. These scenes are faintly copied in royal arch masonry, and the same morals, in like manner, inculcated.
The writer is not a devotee to the mystic rites of the craft: he is not prepared to vindicate the outrages.committed by individuals of the order, instigated by a fanatical zeal for the protection of frivolous ceremonies ; nor will he apologize for the use that m y have been made of the fraternity to promote the views of