Breaking a 18th C cipher reveals hidden history of Freemasonry and freethought


19 Responses to “Breaking a 18th C cipher reveals hidden history of Freemasonry and freethought”

  1. Ramone says:

    But will it tell us where our National Treasure is hidden?

  2. Boundegar says:

    This is so interesting.  I have never known what to make of Masons – maybe because there isn’t just one story, but many many conflicting stories.  But they’re a cool bit of history.

    • cub says:

      conflicting, yes.
      freethinkers of the past, yet modern masonic p.r. claims that all who join must proclaim a belief in “god.”

      is it a haven for atheists who are still afraid of persecution, or just another well-intentioned body corrupted over time?

      i knew a girl whose aunt and uncle were shriners; their main organizational activity was wife-swapping

      • Art says:

        …shriners = wife swapping???
        …well-intentioned body corrupted over time??? 

        You’re reading far too many conspiracy websites.

      • Boundegar says:

        Yea but it’s an awfully fine line between an atheist and a deist.  Pledge allegiance to the poetry and you’re in.  Unless you’re the kind of atheist who is steadfastly opposed to poetry.  There’s no helping those ones.

      • Urbane_Gorilla says:

         How anyone could possibly stretch ‘must believe in God’ to being a haven for atheists is mind bogglingly stupid. As an atheist, I’m certainly not hiding in fear of discovery….And as a clear thinker, I certainly wouldn’t join a secret boy’s club under any circumstances anyway. Secret rites, handshakes and weird clothes?.. Sheesh!

        • cub says:

          i was referring to what i had assumed (silly me) was the well-known connection betw. freethinkers (atheists) and Masonry

          you get it now, right?  please tell me you get it.  i am a freethinker; i understand that the history of the Church and public life has changed somewhat over the years, and i was referring to the roots, which are, IIRC referenced in the article above.

      • Lee Love says:

        As you say, Atheists are not allowed.     Masonry is well preserved and not “corrupt.”    You knew a girl huh?  There is nothing like what you mention in the Shriners.

        • cub says:

          well i did say they were a well-intentioned organization; i know about the hospitals.

          but meditate on this:
          Sir Richard Burton was both a Mason and a Sufi, yet not of high enough rank in either group to know of their connections to one another.

  3. ukegap says:

    Too bad they didn’t just ask a Masonic scholar. It’s an early German Masonic ritual. Not an opthalmology society. 

    “The interpretation of the manuscript as the ritual of an ophthalmology society is due to the misinterpretation of one commonly used logogram (a symbol used in place of a word). The logogram , which the code breakers called “lip,” was interpreted to mean “oculist” or “eye doctor.” Bro. de Hoyos took a cursory read of the first page of the German text, recognized it as using the language of 18th-century German Masonic rituals, and realized the logogram in question clearly stood for Maurer, or “Mason” in English.

  4. Jay Kinney says:

    I found the article generally well done, though the ending was a slight anti-climax. It did obviously benefit from the writer consulting with Masonic scholar Jan Snoek. 

    Re: boundegar’s comments, not only are there many different stories about Masonry, there are many different Masonries. In light of that, it is nearly impossible to make very many generalizations about it — or at least ones that are accurate across all jurisdictions and countries. 

    Many of the conflicting stories about Masonry out there — particularly those of anti-Masonic conspiracy theorists — are confused and inaccurate, partly due to mixing apples and oranges, and partly due to propagating hoax texts and quotes out of context. This article scores high points for largely avoiding all that and concentrating on a specific text and group in a specific time and place.

  5. Art says:

    “… there are many different Masonries”

    That is  inaccurate. 
    There are two masonic bodies.  Blue Lodge and Prince Hall.  The other divisions that come under legal masonic jurisdiction are called Concordant and Appendant bodies. In Freemasonry, this is global.

  6. It’s a great example of people in olden times being just as clever as people in modern times

  7. Evan Pugh says:

    Checkout the online Copiale encoder where you can encode messages into Copiale and send them to friends!

  8. semiotix says:

    O ye who gaze upon theſe words, fail not in thy higheſt duty: conſume thy Ovaltine™.

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