Head #7 - Freemasonry (Rev. 17)
Revelation Time Period #7:
The time during which Head #7 was the dominant ruling power in the realm corresponds to the 7th time period of Revelation, which also corresponds to the 7th Church, the 7th Seal and the 7th Trumpet.
1840 AD - Christ's Second Coming
In following the guideline that the political power responsible for overthrowing the current dominant power becomes the next dominant power, then the 7th head is the one responsible for overpowering the House of Habsburg. As already noted in the study of the 6th Head, the power of the Habsburgs was broken by the spread of new ideas, liberal western powers, revolutions and reform movements. In fact, the rising sense of self-determination and nationalism throughout the Roman realm left no monarch untouched by the new ideas sweeping through the populace. These ideas moved through Habsburg Europe from roughly west to east and north to south, supported by the progressive opinions from enlightened nations of the west, especially France, Great Britain and the United States.1
In order to correctly indentify this 7th political entity, we've looked for a power that meets the following criteria:
- a) Is an identifiable entity with a name, just like the previous political entities (head on a beast), rising in power prior to 1840.
- b) Was directly involved in the overthrow of the Habsburgs (Head #6).
- c) Is the most active and influential where the strongest nations within the Roman realm are located (Britain and USA).
- d) Determines or legitimizes who sits in the seat(s) of power.
- e) Has enough political power to be considered the most dominant central influence in the divided Roman realm.
- f) Rules in the location where the large portion of God's people dwell.
- g) Is the power behind revolutions, including the French Revolution (see the study on the Beast that Ascends out of the Bottomless Pit of Revelation 11).
There is no need to look to conspiracy theories or controversial sources for evidence on this subject, although there is a plentitude of both. The history of events can readily be traced through reliable historical sources and from Freemasons themselves. Indeed, much of the following information was gleaned from masonic sources, including 33 degree masons, past masters, masonic historians and other Freemasons.
The organization has, in more recent times, been able to put forth their ideas and promote Freemasonry on a much larger scale, through the Internet and an increasing base of researchers. This appears to be helping to clear up many of the questions and misunderstandings that have existed over the years. And there are plenty of misunderstandings and fear, which, according to Mark Tabbert, a 33rd degree Mason, are "largely due to a lack of response from the fraternity in the face of the overactive imagination of conspiracy theorists, the sensationalsim of modern journalists and the rigid views of certain well-meaning, but ill-informed, religiously minded individuals.2
BeginningsLike in the case of all the other heads, the 7th power should be readily recognizable and documented in historical sources. They should be established and show a rise in power prior to 1840. Let's look at some of the history and basic principles of the organization.
As far as a beginning, no one seems to know exactly when or how it originated. Its symbols and rituals use the customs and tools of stonemasons' of the Middle Ages and it is widely accepted by Masonic scholars that it arose from these stonemasons' guilds.3 The term "Freemason is a shortened version of "free-stone mason, which was a name given to highly-skilled masons who worked with a softer stone called "free-stone. This softer stone was used in the fine carvings on the face of cathedrals.4
The masons of the middle ages were regulated by trade guilds. They were required to believe in the doctrines of the Catholic Church and obey the laws and sovereignty of the king. There were many regulations related to moral behavior.5 There were times when masons felt unjustly treated, typically in matters related to wages and work hours, and they formed secret trade unions. This enabled them to negotiate secret deals for better pay. These unions were illegal, so their discussions and meetings were kept hidden.6
The uniting of masons and carpenters in these guilds is termed "operative masonry, which refers to those who actually worked in stone, while "speculative masonry (a term used after 1757) refers to the later development of societies that use the physical tools of masonry as symbols and admit members that have no connection to the mason trade. It is unknown exactly how this transition, between about 1550 and 1700, occurred. There are likely many developments that contributed. Historian Jasper Ridley states that "by the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, it was reading the Bible which made so many gentlemen wish to join the masonic lodges.7 The illegal trade unions gradually became organizations composed of intellectuals with members being referred to as "admitted masons or "gentlemen masons. They believed in religious toleration and that those of differing beliefs could be friends.8 Masonic lodges began to spread all over England.
Freemasonry gained popularity during the Age of Enlightenment (1685-1815), which emphasized reason, intellectual achievements, scientific thought and individual rights. The new ideas promoted a different way of thinking. There was a flowering of thought in art, literature and philosophy, and people increasingly questioned authority.9 Supporters of Enlightment were fighting against oppression and religious dogmatism, which often involved opposing the government-entwined church. "Just as the Jesuits had been in the vanguard of Catholic Reformation so the nascent Freemasonry became the champion of Enlightenment.10
The first recorded man to join a speculative Masonic lodge was Elias Ashmole in 1646 in England. Later, the Premier Grand Lodge was announced in London in 1717, which became the standard, in Anglo-American style Freemasonry, for determining whether other Lodges were "regular or "irregular. In fact, all regular Grand Lodges throughout the world trace their origins back to the British Isles.11
Within thirty years of the Premier Grand Lodge, the fraternity had spread across Europe and the American Colonies. As further organizational efforts proceeded, a position paper was put forth by Thomas Dunkerley in 1757, which enabled much of the expansion of Freemasonry into other parts of the Roman realm. The concepts of Masonry were spread rapidly and successfully, growing dramatically during the 1800s and early 1900s.12
Freemasons are generally proud of what they stand for and who they are. There are secrets, but the organization has also been quite open about its achievements, members, activities and controversies.
BeliefsFreemasonry is concerned with moral and spiritual values. Members are taught these values through symbolism and ritual dramas. Masons build an invisible temple made up of perfected human souls, which is metaphorically explained by Solomon's Temple. They are educated to look within themselves to regain the high and holy human experience from which mankind has fallen away. They believe that a way back to unity with Deity is provided through men who are enlightened and serve as stewards of the mysteries, such as prophets, philosophers and sages throughout time. The mysteries, or secret instructions, are closely guarded, handed down through the generations.
The Anglo-American branch of Freemasonry refer to Deity as the "Great Architect of the Universe, generalizing the craft so members can come from any demonimation or religion. The idea is to follow rules of which all men agree and not to exclude anyone based on religion. The belief in a supreme being and the immortality of the soul are the general requirements for membership.
"Beyond the medievalism of Giordano Bruno, and the occultism of John Dee, the origin of Masonic ideas can be traced to Deism--the quintessential philosophy of Freemasonry, and of our own Founding Fathers. No element is as crystalline clear in Masonic ritual as this one-- conspicuously God as the Great Architect of the Universe: a God who does not interfere in human affairs, but whose very nature orders and structures all of creation... Because Deism was--in effect--the "religion of the Founding Fathers, (36) we are accustomed to thinking of it as a backdrop for both the American Revolution of 1776, and the French, 1789."13
"Freemasonry does not assert nor does it teach that one religion is as good as another. Freemasonry admits men of all religions. Freemasons believe in religious freedom and that the relationship between the individual and his God is personal, private and sacred. We do not apply a theological test to a candidate. We do ask a man if he believes in God and that is the only religious test. Belief in God is faith; belief about God is theology. As freemasons we are interested in faith only and not in theology. Religion is not permitted to be discussed at masonic meetings. Freemasonry is a completely tolerant organization. When Freemasonry accepts a Christian, or a Jew, or a Buddhist, or a Mohammedan, it does not accept him as such, but accepts him as a man, worthy to be received into the masonic fraternity."14Alternatively, and importantly for this discussion, the Continental branch of Freemasonry did not require a belief in diety until 1849. This continued until 1877, at which time they changed back, admitting atheists into membership.15 Freemasonry has been influenced by many varied sources of enlightened ideas and religious views, including mysticism, pantheism, mesmerism, atheism and deism.
Some highlights of Masonic beliefs and ideals include an appreciation of order, rules and displine, admiration of architecture and geometry, promotion of the value of science, reason and intellect, adherence to moral law, quest for virtue, and the search for progess and the ideal society. These ideas were integrated into their rules and elaborate rituals, which have an emotional effect. Their goal was to build a perfect society within the lodge and were extremely careful about who was admitted into membership.
Involvement in politics"In the examples we have seen from the masonic lodges the membrane between private politics and public politics could be remarkably porous.16
It is important to recognize that Freemasonry, at least in its Anglo-American branch, currently goes to great lengths to ensure that it does not become a political organization. It forbids discussion of politics and takes care to ensure Freemasonry doesn't become involved in affairs of state.17 In spite of these efforts, it is difficult to see Freemasonry's history as nonpolitical. One can hardly miss seeing the alignment of Freemasonry with specific government regimes, in particular Great Britain.
On the other hand, political involvement is encouraged in the Continental branch of Freemasonry, prevalent in France and South America. These members do discuss politics at meetings. "Moreover the Grand Orient de France operates as an active political lobby, and inquires into potential candidates political beliefs and orientations before they are allowed to petition a lodge."18 Another example is seen in the lodges in Croatia that served to spread the ideas of the Enlightment, which "acquired a distinctly political character."19
There are also many irregular, fringe and clandestine masonic groups that do not adhere to the same policies as the Anglo-American branch. Even though these irregular Lodges differ in some of their opinions and interpretations of Freemasonry, many of their men are still recognized as Freemasons.20 There have also been clubs set up by Freemasons that have political involvement as the primary purpose. Numerous secret societies have come and gone that were inspired and patterned after Freemasonry and recruited members from Freemasonry.
Though Anglo-American Freemasonry's official policies do not allow a political agenda or the discussion of politics at its meetings, it does allow that the ideals and principles it holds dear, attract members who excel in leadership positions and who take active roles in politics as individuals. It is well aware that as its members assimilate its beliefs on liberty and incorporate the ideas of Masonry as their own, they will want to fight against dictators and oppression.
According to an article written in The Builder Magazine, a Masonic publication, Freemasonry does not wish to control the affairs of the nation, however, "it is a proper function of Masonry to fight against other organizations doing this very thing."21 Said another way, by the Virginia Masonic Herald, when the government respects individual liberty and rights, Freemasonry is a loyal supporter of that government, and that "our beloved Order has been and must continue to [be] the greatest force of all time on the side of individual liberty and the dignity of man, and fighting against tyranny and usurpation."22 The spirit of freedom has "infused all of the craft and has spread around the world, making Freemasonry feared by tyrants, dictators, and those who would deny people their basic rights."23
Clearly, European monarchs of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries (as we saw with Metternich) believed that Freemasonry threatened their state and fomented revolution. This continued in the twentieth century as seen in the actions and statements of many rulers, including the Horthy regime in Hungary as it raided Masonic lodges (1919), Adolph Hitler in Germany as it suppressed Masonry as a political power that motivated wars and revolutions (1920), in Benito Mussolini's Italy where Masons were seen as a political organization opposed to fascism (1923), and in Spain where Masons were seen as plotting against the government and were killed by the hundreds (1935).
When Japan attacked Pearl Harbor in 1941 and joined World War II, they proceeded to arrest, interrogate and torture Freemasons. Opposition and suspicion had existed for many years, especially towards Jewish Freemasons. In 1938, the Japanese delegate to the Weltdinst congress said "Japan is at war not with China but with Freemasonry"24 and the Japanese Chronicle "denounced 'the secret league of Freemasons... engaged in the struggle behind the World Revolution'."25 This treatment extended into countries conquered by Japan, including Korea, Manchuria, China, Hongkong, the Philippines and Singapore.
As Robert H. Jackson, chief prosecutor and U.S. Supreme Court justice, said during the Nuremberg war crimes trials, "It is not generally understood that among the earliest and most savage of the the many persecutions undertaken by every modern dictatorship are those directed against the Free Masons. [The] dictators realize that its [Freemasonry's] membership are not likely to support the police state, which lays so heavy a hand on the freedom of the individual.26
In 1942, Hitler saw Freemasonry as the originator of the war and as an organization created to expand British world power.27 This shared idea, whether accurate in every specific situation or not, can be seen in the statements and actions of various countries and leaders who believed that Masonic organizations were planners and implementers of revolutions and the tool of western powers to overthrow governments.
The Papal perception of Freemasonry as "despoiling the nations of Christendom is revealed in an encyclical of Pope Leo XIII in 1884. It states that
"the partisans of evil seems to be combining together, and to be struggling with united vehemence, led on or assisted by that strongly organized and widespread association called the Freemasons. No longer making any secret of their purposes, they are now boldly rising up against God Himself. They are planning the destruction of holy Church publicly and openly, and this with the set purpose of utterly despoiling the nations of Christendom, if it were possible, of the blessings obtained for us through Jesus Christ our Saviour... Ingratiating themselves with rulers under a pretense of friendship, the Freemasons have endeavoured to make them their allies and powerful helpers for the destruction of the Christian name; and that they might more strongly urge them on, they have, with determined calumny, accused the Church of invidiously contending with rulers in matters that affect their authority and sovereign power. Having, by these artifices, insured their own safety and audacity, they have begun to exercise great weight in the government of States; but nevertheless they are prepared to shake the foundations of empires, to harass the rulers of the State, to accuse, and to cast them out, as often as they appear to govern otherwise than they themselves could have wished. In like manner, they have by flattery deluded the people. Proclaiming with a loud voice liberty and public prosperity, and saying that it was owing to the Church and to sovereigns that the multitude were not drawn out of their unjust servitude and poverty, they have imposed upon the people, and, exciting them by a thirst for novelty, they have urged them to assail both the Church and the civil power."28Masonic theorists and leaders agree that "Freemasonry means the equal right of all people to use their mind, abilities, and liberty and to govern themselves, even if they sometimes make mistakes."29 A Freemason's involvement in politics will reflect this belief, resulting in a push for constitutions, whether in constitutional monarchies or democracies and governments represented by the people. It is easy to understand then, how in most countries in the world outside of England, the Freemasons were drawn into radical political activity.30
Constitutionalism was at the heart of masonic lodges. The governance of a lodge was organized around British constitutional principles, involving elections, majority rule and representative government. "The lodges bcame microscopic civil polities, new public spaces, in effect schools for constitutional government."31 They became a place to act out, perfect and experience governance based on a constitution and society based on fraternity and equality. Because monarchical absolutism was common in most of Continental Europe, republicanism was seen as "the ultimate form of subversion."32 The lodges, by the very way they were privately organized, were seen as a threat to the state.
These private lodges began to see the application of their perfect society in the lodge to the greater public society of their nation. The idea that the lodge's system of governance should be a model for the nation gained momentum. The Grand Lodge in France began to make this analogy explicit in the 1780s.33
"The form of the lodge became one of the many channes that transmitted a new political culture, based upon constitutionalism, which gradually turned against traditional privileges and established, hierarchical authority. That culture was in turn bequeathed to the modern era by the Continental revolutions of the 1780s and 1790s".34Freemasonry, in terms of political conspiracy, is not that different from any other political power we have been studying. All have believed their way should be implemented and worked to push their agenda onto a government, whether it be the Roman Senate, Roman military, Franks, papacy, prince-electors, House of Habsburg or Freemasonry. Take the Roman Senate, for example. Several powerful senators would often conspire together and plan secretly to enact some plan, while other senators had no interest in making any changes and were loyal to the current leader and laws. They would fight among themselves, but the Senate nonetheless was the most powerful political entity. Freemasonry, had revolutionaries and loyalists among its ranks, but it nonetheless enacted profound political changes. It could at various times and by various sources accurately claim to be nonpolitical or political, revolutionary or loyal, atheistic or deistic.
Unlike the previous political entities, Freemasonry maintains an ongoing aura of mystery and secrecy. This has brought about great suspicion and fear. However, fear of Freemasonry or an unwillingness to talk about it for fear of being labeled a conspiracist, should be diminishing in today's world of readily available historical information. Just as we cannot separate the Roman Senate of the first century from the Roman Empire's government, it is impossible to separate Freemasonry from political developments and governments of the last few centuries.
Revolutions in Habsburg Territories
"...Many significant facts witness to the hitherto unestimated work of the secret societies in furthering the cause of popular emancipation. Ideas are not suddenly converted into swords. Men must have hammered patiently and hard upon the anvil of the national soul to produce the keen-edged, swift-striking blade of revolution."35The Austrian Empire, ruled by the Habsburgs, was substantial, crossing many nationalities. In 1804, it was made up of Germans, Czechs, Poles, Romanians, Hungarians, italians, ukrainians, Croats, Slovaks, Serbs, Slovenes and numerous smaller nationalities. In addition to ruling Austria, the emperor also held the title of King of Hungary, Bohemia, Croatia, Slavonia and Dalmatia and led the Empire's multi-national army.
See a map of the Austrian Empire in 1815.
Like other countries, the reform movements and increase of revolutionary fervor in Austria (where the House of Habsburg was based after 1815) and its territories, during the 1830s and 1840s, have their roots in Masonic influences. Many of the nobles and leaders in Austria and its territories became Freemasons in the late 1700s and early 1800s. They and their children were the leaders in the reform movement and played prominent roles in government.
The first Masonic lodge in Habsburg territory appeared in Bohemia in 1769. It grew rapidly into surrounding areas and became distinctly political in character.36 It became quite popular, and during the reign of Joseph II (1765 to 1790), he was surrounded by Freemasons and Freemasonry was used to disseminate philosophical ideas among the elites of the Habsburg monarchy.37
Nicholas Parsons, a freelance writer in Vienna, writes that
"it is clear that the influence of speculative freemasonry, which had spread from England to the continent in the early and mid-18th century, had provided the impetus for the reconsideration of some of the most treasured assumptions about the Hungarian constitution and about governance in general. A large number of intellectual Hungarian aristocrats had become adherents of freemasonry, including such leading figures as Draskovich, Erdoydy, Festetics, Batthyany, Podmaniczky, Csaky and even Szechenyi's ultra-loyal father as a young man.38In his book Beethoven, Freemasonry, and the Tagebuch of 1812-1818, Maynard Solomon lists the names of well-known aristocrats and leaders in Habsburg lands who were also Freemasons and states that
"as is well known, many of the leading Habsburg supporters and patrons of music in the 1780s and 1790s were Freemasons or sympathetic to Masonic ideals. Among the aristocratic patrons of Mozart, Haydn, and Beethoven in Vienna were Masons like Prince Nikolaus I Esterhazy (1741-1809), Count Johann Nepomuk Esterhazy, Count (later Prince) Johann Baptist Dietrichstein-Proskau, Count Anton Georg Apponyi, and Prince Karl Lichnowsky. Members of the Thun-Hohenstein, Palffy, and Erdody families were active in Masonic circles."39Freemason Martin McGregor writes that "among the members are no less than four Counts Esterhazy, as well as several others of the highest nobility, and no less than 49 Officials of the Imperial Court as well as officers of provincial and noble courts throughout the Empire.440
With so many of the leading aristocrats, nobility and officials in the imperial court becoming Freemasons, even during times when Freemasonry was suppressed by the government, not only speaks to the popularity and influence of the Craft, but also to its effectiveness and ingenuity in achieving reforms and spreading revolutionary ideas. These ideas caused the gradual erosion of Habsburg power, with a marked decline seen after 1840 when the power of Metternich and Austria began to fade.
As we look further at the revolutions in Hapsburg lands, keep in mind that for hundreds of years during the middle ages, inequalities and injustice prevailed. Innocent victims, philosophers and reformers were put to death. Countless were tortured and subject to cruel suppression. It is no wonder that those desiring change were drawn to the masonic lodges where proceedings were hidden. Secrecy was perceived as necessary in order to enact changes in such a political and social environment.
Hungarian RevolutionHungary, along with East Central Europe, was profoundly affected by the Enlightenment coming out of the western nations. "As the ideas of Enlightenment entered the country, the Freemasons and Rosicrucians served as its propagators."41 The accompanying revolutionary thought developed, and Freemasons led the way in its spread and eventual implementation in Hungary. Let's introduce a few of the major players.
Perhaps the greatest hero of the Hungarian revolution and the one most responsible for putting political pressure on the Austrian government and inspiring the revolts of the populace, was the famous Louis Kossuth, a Freemason, lawyer, journalist, politican, and for a time regent.
Lajos Batthyany, son of Count Jozsef Sandor Batthyany, was a Freemason who also played a major role in the reform movement, leading the liberal party in the Upper House, and even dying for the cause in 1849.
Another main player in the revolutions, was Istvan Szechenyi (hungarian Grof Szechenyi Istvan). His father was a Freemason, but it isn't clear whether or not Istvan was a member, though he worked closely with Batthyany in politics as well as on economic and agriculature projects. They were more moderate than Kossuth, but worked for reform in line with Masonic constitutional principles. Istvan became fascinated by the rapid modernization of Britain, which greatly influenced his thinking.42 He dedicated his life to the progress of his country and "made common cause with the revolutionary government, in order to temper the ardour of innovators by the sagacity of his counsel.43
The emperor of Austria during this time was Ferdinand I (1835 - 1848), who was born epileptic and mentally challenged. By the will of his father, he was directed by a State Conference, composed of five members. One of the members was the famous and powerful Prince Clemens Metternich, who we've already seen was solidly opposed to revolution and Masonic ideas. He came to be seen as a reactionary protector of the rights of the monarchy. For many years, he was very powerful and seen as the leader in Austria. Metternich "became not only the premier statesman in Europe but virtual ruler of the Empire.44
Metternich was alarmed by the growing national sentiment in Hungary. He believed that God had chosen him to secure the Habsburg empire.45 His view was that as long as nationalism and liberalism could be kept out of Austria, it was capable of remaining a great power. The Metternich System attempted to "unite all the monarchs of Europe in a common resistance to revolutionary changes."46 This did work for a time, as the monarchs of Europe were well-aware of the American and French revolutions and saw that the spread of Masonic ideas would threaten their own positions. It was quite true that "Freemasonry provided a channel and an organizational form for the dissemination of the new ideas in Hungary."47
Metternich's fear of secret societies appeared in many of his writings.48 He saw the idea of liberty and equality, as preached by the Jacobins, as subversive and undermining the ideals of the empire.49 He believed secret societies and the ideas of Freemasonry were dangerous, and thus enforced censorship of universities, suppressed newspapers and persecuted Freemasons.50 In 1833, he told his agent in Lombardy:
"For many years all those who had pointed to the existence of a comite directeur working secretly for universal revolution were met everywhere only by incredulity; today it has been shown that this infernal propaganda exists, that it has its centre in Paris, and that it is divided into as many sections as there are nations to regenerate... Everything that refers to this great and dangerous plot cannot, therefore, be observed and surveyed with too much attention."51According to H. L. Haywood, a Freemason who wrote comprehensively on how Freemasonry works, Metternich "sent out word that Freemasonry must be destroyed-it is for this reason that he may be adjudged the most powerful and the most successful Anti-Mason in history; and if his system had survived (it broke down in the 1840's) not one Lodge in Europe would have survived with it."52
To further the agitation and fear of Freemasonry, other secret societies sprang up in various areas of Europe, full of disgruntled citizens, who were caught planning conspiracies. In the 1820s, "no less than nine major conspiracies were detected in seven months.53
It was in this environment, in 1825-1827 and in 1832-1836, that Louis Kossuth, appointed as deputy to Count Hunyady at the National Diet, reported on the Diet's proceedings in writing, as the Austrian government, fearing popular dissent, had banned published reports. During this time, there was a struggle to reassert a Hungarian national identity by several leaders, and the high quality of Kossuth's letters led them to be widely circulated and his name and influence grew. The government forbade the manuscripts to be printed and circulated, but Kossuth continued to report, even after the Diet dissolved, covering the debates of the county assemblies, and the documents were circulated by hand. He was finally arrested, along with several others, in 1837 on a charge of high treason. He remained in prison for several years.
People were so agitated by the imprisonment that the liberals were able to rise in power and carried the elections for the next Diet.56 When the Diet reconvened in 1839, the reforming majority of the Lower Chamber was larger then ever, and now a liberal party was also formed in the Upper House. It was led by Count Louis Batthyany and Baron Joseph Eotvos, both Freemasons.57 The Diet refused to pass any government measures until the political prisoners were released. Metternich was unmoved and remained unyielding until 1840 when the danger of war obliged him to give in to their demands.58
The war in 1840 refers to the Egyptian threat on the Ottoman Empire, "The Eastern Question", in which, as we've seen, Metternich was deeply involved.59 When the Convention of the Pacification of the Levant was delivered into the hands of the Egyptian ruler, the Ottomans came under the protection of the Allied nations of Europe (Britain, Russia, Prussia and Austria), and it brought the time period of the 6th Trumpet/6th Head to an end. Following this, Egypt refused the terms, and it instigated the war. The danger of that war coincides with the time Metternich conceded to the demands of the reformers.
After Metternich gave in and agreed to let Kossuth out of prison (May 1840), a turning point can be seen in the struggle between the reformers and the Habsburgs. Not only did the Diet pass notable reforms in 1840, but Metternich's influence was significantly reduced in the Austrian government and throughout Europe.60 By 1841, the government allowed a liberal newspaper to circulate, and Freemasonry was restored in the Austrian-ruled areas of Italy where it had been formerly persecuted.
As Metternich declined in power, his principle opponent in the five-member State Conference, Reform-minded Franz Anton von Kolowrat-Liebsteinsky, began to gain the upper hand. Kolowrat, though not a liberal, was more liberally-minded and encouraged national movements. It is not clear whether or not Kolowrat himself was a Freemason, but his father (Franz Joseph von Kolowrat-Liebsteinsky) was a very active Freemason61 and he did have various relatives who were Freemasons and members of the Illuminati (a secret society patterned after Freemasonry).62
Kossuth continued to battle for reform through the 1840s. He was elected to the new Diet in 1847, due to the support of Batthyany, and immediately became chief leader of the Extreme Liberals. In 1848, he made a powerful speech, demanding parliamentary government for Hungary and constitutional government for the rest of Austria, which at once launched him into the role of leader of the European revolution. The year of 1848 was the year of many revolutions across Europe. When Metternich was put out of office on March 13, Kossuth's speech was read aloud in the streets to the mob. When Batthyany then formed a new government, Kossuth became Minister of Finance and "the direction of the whole government was in his hands.63
Kossuth, who became a national icon, widely circulated papers that insisted on the superiority of the Magyars in Hungary and promoted separation from Austria. Kossuth's views represented the "French Jacobin approach to nationhood at its clearest"64. Szechenyi, the more moderate reformer, warned that Kossuth was going too far and would lead the nation to revolution.65 Indeed, he was correct. Kossuth's extreme demands brought the country into revolution, resulting in his army being defeated by Russian and Austrian armies. The many more moderate reformers in the government were often perplexed with Kossuth's actions, but he had such popularity, that he was able to run things his way until his army's defeat in 1849. The Diet and new government then fled and Kossuth hid the Crown of St. Stephen, the sacred emblem of the Hungarian nation in a meadow.66
Some of the reformers had to leave the country for years before returning to continue their work, some were killed, and some simply continued on with their position in government. Other Freemasons that continued to work for reforms include Francis Deak (considered the hero of 1867 when Hungary finally won her right to separate administration), Count Gyorgy Apponyi de Nagyappony (appointed Speaker of the House of Magnates in 1861 and an influential leader of the national party), George Klapka (an organizer of the Hungarian legion in Italy in 1859 and member of the Hungarian parliament in 1867), Franz Pulszky (writer and influential politician and member of the reformed Diet of Hungary in 1867-76 and again in 1884), Prince Paul III Anton Esterhazy (an exceedingly wealthy and famous politician) and Count Andrassy (Vice-President of the Diet in 1865 and President of the sub-committee appointment to draw up the Composition between Austria and Hungary, Hungarian Premier in 1867, Chancellor in 1871).
Masons also led out in uprisings and reform movements throughout other Austrian and surrounding territories. This included Transylvania67 and Croatia.68
In Hungary, and throughout Europe, the demonstrations and rioting had to end. Stability had to be brought to the country. There were many, including Freemasons, who supported a return to dynastic authority just to eliminate the chaos. After Franz Joseph became emperor of Austria in 1848, he tried to re-establish an absolute government, but within a decade had to adjust to rapid changes and was finally convinced to initiate internal reforms and liberal adaptations. Austria suffered defeats in Italy in 1859 and the "Seven Weeks' War of 1866 ended Austrian interference in Germany. Hungary obtained a semi-independent kingdom in 1867 with a separate constitution and parliament.69 Franz Joseph remained popular and respected, though Austria's political difficulties continued to increase into the 20th century.70
Freemasonry also underwent organizational changes through the revolutions. It had gone through suppression, upheavals, factional fighting, and the death and exile of many of its members. Yet, as the revolutions did their work in various countries, Freemasonry would become linked with the new ruling powers.
Controlling the Seat of PowerThis dominant political entity, Freemasonry, like all the proceeding entities, would sit or determine who sits in the seat(s) of power. However, in the case of Freemasonry, it would be just as concerned with who does not sit in the seat(s) of power. Establishing a government so that it does not have an emperor, such as in the United States, is the same as controlling the seat of power. Whether there is a king or not, remember that Freemasonry teaches loyalty to governments, as long as those governments are treating their citizens with respect.
Beyond the general beliefs and teachings of Freemasonry, there have historically been major political differences between lodges and plenty of individual Freemasons being on opposite extremes. "Being a Freemason did not determine a man's political beliefs; but the political beliefs of the members of a lodge determined whether it was a body of loyal monarchists or an organization of Red revolutionaries.71
As we've traced the political powers in the Roman realm since the first century, we've seen the seat of power, initially based in the city of Rome, move to Ravenna, France, Germany, Bohemia and Austria, with varying powers frequently banding together to shift the balance of power. With the shift in dominant political power, from the House of Habsburg to Freemasonry, we also see a shift in the location of the seat of power. The base of the seventh political power would be most firmly established where the mightiest nations within the Roman realm were now located; namely Great Britain and the United States of America. These are exactly where Freemasonry was most firmly established and reached its highest point of power and membership.72
The Roman realm had lost a lot of territory since the time of the caesars, including the middle east and much of eastern Europe to Islamic powers. However, after Christopher Columbus discovered America in 1492, the Roman realm began expanding westward and gained large pieces of new territory. European colonists, Spanish, Dutch, English, French, Swedish and Portuguese, began settling in the United States of America in the 1600s, with the largest settlements by the English. Approximately 70 million people left Europe during the 19th century.
By the 1770s, the Thirteen Colonies contained two and half million people. They declared independence from the mighty and extensive British Empire in 1776. During the 19th century, they expanded west, forcing native tribes onto reservations, quadrupling the territorial size of the United States and experiencing a dramatic expansion of wealth and prosperity. By 1890, the USA was clearly established as a world economic and military power.
The extent of the British Empire reached its peak by 1921, when it ruled approximately one quarter of the world's population and total land area. After World War II, the British Empire transformed into the Commonwealth as its territories became independent.
The United States was established on the principle that sovereignty rests with the people and not with the government. It was a place where Freemasonry could flourish, because Freemasonry had formed it to be an environment where the Fraternity had freedom to exist. As Freemason H. L. Hayword puts it,
"the same Fraternity which will not tolerate interference by churches, governments, or their agencies will not tolerate interference with churches or governments by its own members. What do churches and governments have to do with it? Nothing. If it is left at peace, if it is left free, if it is left to do its own work and in its own way, it can be itself and do its own work in any country in the world without disturbing that country's religion, government, or society."73
Britain, America, and Hungary Sympathies
"The elite of Hungarian intellectual life has known for generations that the future history of mankind will in a great measure be shaped by the English-speaking nations."74In the 1600s, England became the first major power to feature a representative government. Later, the United States developed into a republic through constitutionally limited government after 1776. With the United States' successful revolution, France was soon also inspired to revolution. These three countries came to be seen as the main sources of Enlightenment, and the spirit of revolution spread to many other countries across Europe and beyond. British, American and French influences played a major role in the development of revolutionary thought, as well as being instrumental to the success of independence in Hungary and other countries. The reform movements in these countries were closely connected in policy and sympathies.
Freemasons across the continent identified with the traditions of the British nation. They understood that the principals of the government of the lodges came from England and considered England a country to emulate.75
"The constitutional practices employed by the freemasons were derived from seventeenth-century England. English Whigs (as well as a few Jacobites) transmitted those practices onto the Continent. The lodges thus became one link in the chain that connects English political culture, and in particular its revolutions, to the late eighteenth-century democratic revolutions on the Continent."76As an example, one of the main reasons the French Revolution broke out in 1789 was their desire to reshape their French monarchy so it resembled the English model.77 In addition, Britain's refusal to always co-operate in suppressing revolutionary activity contributed to the defeat of the Metternich System. The allied monarchs could blame Britain for some major setbacks, for "the British government had thrown its influence on the side of the rebels, just as it had been the first to recognize Louis Philippe's usurpation of the French throne."78
In the case of the Greek revolution, it was supported by wealthy Greek communities in Britain and the United States.79 Also, two critical loans were provided by British fund-holders, making "the City of London the financier of the revolution, and inspiring a British political party in Greece that believed "the revolution could only end in success with the help of Britain."80
Another example is provided by the Polish independence movement. Research by Freemason Celil Layiktez shows that Polish Freemasons who had taken refuge in France and England, were organizing a revolution against Russia, using their masonic connections. The organization was formed by Knez Czartoriski who directed a large network operating in Central Europe from his Hotel in Paris.81 Since the politics of England and France were then focused on Austria and Russia, and the activities of Czartoriski's organization "coincided with the ideologies and objectives of England and France, these two countries sponsored Knez Czartoriski. All the members of Knez Czartoriski's organisation were freemasons; freemasons were in power in the governments of England and France."82
Hungary's reform movements, both in 1790 and 1848, were patterned after British constitutionalism. Not only in politics and industry, but the ways of the English had permeated Hungarian cultural life.83 Some even date the beginning of Hungary's reform from the time of Szechenyi's first trip to England. In speaking of Szechenyi, Stephen Gal writes that
"there is no domain of public life which he did not in some measure modify on the English pattern... Szechenyi knew the leaders of English political, social and intellectual life; he was on a footing of intimacy with all the Secretaries for Foreign Affairs - Castlereagh [Robert Stewart], Canning, Lord Aberdeen, Lord Palmerston, as well as with every British Ambassador in Vienna. From his numerous journeys to England he always brought back something useful for his own country."84In addition, "'the principles of the American Declaration of Independence', said Francis Pulszky[ Freemason], 'were the guiding principles also in the Hungarian war of liberation'."85 The American Revolution set the example for those Hungarians struggling for liberty and there developed a kindred tie between the two nations. After the revolution ended, America was instrumental in aiding the Hungarian refugees and freeing Kossuth from internment in Turkey. When Kossuth visited the United States in 1851, he was treated as a hero all over the country. The Freemason's Lodge of Chigaco gave him a flag which showed Asia represented by Moses, America by George Washington and Europe by Kossuth.86
In Emil Cic's Summary of A History of Croatian Enemies, he describes the strong Masonic influence that worked in favor of British interests in Croatia's parliaminent in 1861. He also states that
"the importance of Neustadter's memoirs lie in the fact that he discovered a very important unspoken truth. He quotes, for the first time ever, sources and persons who reveal that the main enemies of the Habsburg Monarchy were not in fact revolutionary Hungarians or Italians, but the Freemasonic British who had organized the revolutions against the Catholic (and later orthodox) monarchies."87
Influence in English-Speaking Countries
"The masonic message that made its way to Continental Europe would never lose its originally British associations."88The english-speaking countries, beginning with Great Britain, are the very countries where Freemasonry flourished and became most firmly established by 1840. Thus, we would expect to find Freemasons filling the prominent positions in the British government, as well as the governments in countries that it purchased or organized, such as the USA, Australia and Canada. Note that controlling the seat of power includes power to control that an individual doesn't sit in power, or that the king, queen or emperor is a figurehead, as in the case of democracies where control is placed in the hands of parliaments or branches of government. In addition to keeping the throne "empty", Masons occupy powerful positions within those governments, such as prime ministers, presidents, governors, judges, members of parliment, senators, etc. As we examine the kings, rulers, officers and influential entities of various countries leading up to, and since, 1840, Masonic dominance is apparent.
Freemasonry in Great Britain:From Winston Churchill to Captain A B Cook, it was fashionable to be a Mason. This was true for kings, dukes, archbishops, military leaders, clergy, lawyers, business owners, medical professionals and a host of others.
Freemasonry in Great Britain became aligned with and inseparable from the ruling powers. The links between British royalty and Freemasonry began in the 1700s. From 1721 through 1999, only noblemen or members of the royal family were Grand Masters of the Grand Lodge.89 The following outline of the British royal family from 1700 to 1978, shows that nearly all have been Freemasons. Some of the information in the outline is gleaned from an interesting article by David Barrett, a 32nd degree Mason, on the Pietre-Stones website.90
|British Royalty Family||Freemason?|
|King George I (1714-1727)||No|
|King George II (1727-1760)||No|
|- Prince William Augustus, Duke of Cumberland, 1743 (third son of King George II)||Yes|
|- Frederick Lewis, 15th Prince of Wales, 1707-1751, heir to the throne (son of George II) (the first Royal Freemason)||Yes|
|- Edward Augustus, Duke of York (son of Frederick Lewis)||Yes|
|- Prince William Henry, Duke of Gloucester (son of Frederick Lewis)||Yes|
|- Prince Henry Frederick, Duke of Cumberland (son of Frederick lewis)||Yes|
|- King George III (1760-1820) (Henry, Duke of Cumberland (1745-1790) (son Frederick Lewis)) All of the six sons of King George III (1738-1820) (son of Frederick Lewis) became Freemasons, which established a royal base for future Freemasonry.||No|
|King George IV (1820-1830) Augustus Frederick, Prince of Wales 1762-1830 (son of George III) - The first monarch on the British throne to be a Mason and the first monarch to be a Grand Master.||Yes|
|Frederick Augustus (son of George III), Duke of York 1763-1827||Yes|
|King William IV (1830-1837) William Henry (son of George III), Duke of Clarence 1765-1837||Yes|
|Ernest Augustus (son of George III), Duke of Cumberland 1771 - 1851||Yes|
|Augustus Frederick (son of George III), Duke of Sussex 1773-1843||Yes|
|William Frederick, Duke of Gloucester (son-in-law of King George III)||Yes|
|Edward Augustus (son of George III), Duke of Kent 1767-1820||Yes|
|Queen Victoria (succeeded to the throne in 1837) (she was the daughter of Edward Augustus) was reportedly well disposed toward Freemasonry||NA|
|Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught (third son of Queen Victoria)||Yes|
|Prince Arthur of Connaught (son of Duke of Connaught)||Yes|
|Prince Leopold, Duke of Albany (4th son of Queen Victoria)||Yes|
|King Edward VII (1901-1910) (Albert Edward, Prince of Wales (son Queen Victoria)||Yes|
|Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence (eldest son of King Edward VII)||Yes|
|King George V (1910-1936) Prince George (second son of King Edward VII)||No|
|King Edward VIII, Prince of Wales, Duke of Windsor (eldest son of King George V)||Yes|
|Prince George, Duke of kent (4th son of King George V)||Yes|
|Prince Edward, Duke of Kent (elder son of Prince George)||Yes|
|Prince Michael of Kent (younger son of Prince Deorge, Duke of Kent)||Yes|
|Prince Henry, Duke of Gloucester (third son of King George V)||No|
|King George VI (1936-1952) - Prince Albert, Duke of York (2nd son of King George V)||Yes|
|Queen Elizabeth succeeded to the throne in 1952 - first child of George VI||NA|
|Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh (Queen Elizabeth's husband)||Yes|
|H.R.H. Charles, Prince of Wales||No|
Freemasonry in the United States of America:
"After 1717, [the] English Grand Lodge exported Freemasonry to North America as it did to the European Continent."91The history of the United States is also intricately linked with Freemasonry. Freemasonry was formally established in the USA in 1730, and it went on to become wildly popular.
Many of the founding fathers, heroes of the revolution, generals, military officers, supreme court justices and other freedom fighters were Freemasons. Even though there were Freemasons loyal to the king and revolutionaries who were not Freemasons, the Freemasons came to be regarded as "the men who had made the Revolution.92 The lodges in America were very involved in politics, for the "rule that a lodge does not become involved in politics did not apply in revolutionary America.93
Some of the more prominent Freemasons include Paul Rever, Benjamin Franklin, General Douglas MacArthur, Astronaut Edwin E. 'Buzz' Aldrin and aviator Charles A. Lindbergh.94
- There have been 14 Presidents and 18 Vice Presidents who were Freemasons.95
- About 1/3 of the Justices of the United States Supreme Court have been Freemasons.96
- Thirty one percent of Abraham Lincoln's cabinet (president from 1861 to 1865) were Freemasons.97
- Ninety two (16%) of the approximately 578 Civil War Union Generals were Freemasons.98
- Sixty four (15%) of the approximately 422 Civil War Confederate Generals were Freemasons.99
The history of the Anti-Mason party reveals some confusing facts. For example, the Anti-Masonic Party's first presidential candidate was William Wirt. He was a former Mason, yet defended Freemasonry in a speech before the convention that nominated him. In 1836, they nominated William Henry Harrison, but were "unable to obtain assurance from Harrison that he was not a Mason."101 This divided the party enough that they were not able to sponsor a candidate for the presidential election of 1836. Nevertheless, Harrison was nominated in 1838 and became president in 1841. He ran against Martin Van Buren, who was Jackson's longtime confidant, chief political strategist, vice president from 1833 to 1837 and president from 1837-1841. Harrison's vice president, John Tyler, became president later in 1841 when Harrison died. Tyler has been viewed as "no real Whig" and his views were closer to Jackson's, which eventually got him expelled from the Whig party. In time, Tyler, Calhoun and other Whig members "would not only return to the party of Jackson, but they would take it over."102
The Anti-Masonic Party was very short-lived. All these intrigues leave us wondering just who were Masons and who were Anti-Masons.
Freemasonry in Canada:
- Thirteen of the thirty four premiers of British Columbia have been Freemasons.103
- Six of the twenty-two prime ministers of Canada have been Freemasons.104
- Eighteen of the thirty-seven mayors of Vancouver have been Freemasons.105
Freemasonry in Australia:Freemasonry's first civilian lodge in Australia formed in 1820. It grew steadily in membership and acceptance and "by the 1840's Freemasonry no longer met with disapproval from the local authorities. Rather it was seen as an institution tending to promote good order in society. In South Australia several early Governors were members while in Western Australia the Governor had a leading role in the establishment of the first lodge in Perth."106
Freemasons through Australia's history include governors, prime ministers (10 out of 27 since 1901), premiers, chief justices, mayors, goverment officials, generals and many military officers, among others.
Influence Throughout the Roman Realm and Beyond
"The news of the formation of Grand Lodge and the activities of th English Freemasons spread quickly throughout Europe. By the 1730s, masonic lodges had been formed in the Netherlands, France, Germany, the Austrian Empire, several of the Italian states, Spain and Sweden. Many of them were formed directly by representatives of English Grand Lodge who travelled to the foreign country for this purpose; others were formed independently of Grand Lodge by local residents, but under the inspiration of the English example."107We've already seen how Masons have implemented revolutions, obtained great political achievements, and controlled key government positions in some of the mightiest nations on earth. They were key to spreading enlightened ideas and shaping politics throughout Europe. In addition to Masons themselves becoming presidents, prime ministers, judges, and other leaders, the extent of their influence over non-masonic rulers and leaders cannot be measured. It is also noteworthy that prominent Masons have significantly influenced art, music, science, entertainment and culture.
We previously saw the Freemasons' involvement in English-speaking countries. We'll now look briefly at other countries within the Roman realm and beyond.
France:The French Revolution, occurring in the late 1700s, is inseparable from Freemasonry. When the constitutional National Assembly was formed, at least 320 of the 1336 delegates to the Estates-General were Freemasons.108
The Duke of Orleans, who's cousin was the King of France during the French Revolution, was an active Freemason and Grand Master of the Grand Orient. He was later considered, by Metternich, as also being at the head of the 1830 revolt in France.109
When Napoleon formed his government in the early 1800s, the number of lodges grew from 300 to 1,220 in only ten years.110 Nearly all who were appointed to high positions were members of the Craft and higher Degrees. This included five or six out of the six who formed the Grand Council, six out of the nine lesser Imperial officers of state and twenty-two of the first thirty marshals. All of Napoleon's brothers were Masons with some ruling as kings of Spain, Holland and Westphalia. His step-son, brother-in-law and nephew were also Freemasons.111 According to Jack Buta, a Freemason writing for the Pietre Stones website, "it became the fashion for everyone who wished to please the emperor to become a Mason."112
In 1901, French Freemasonry developed the Radical Party, which implemented a new political order in France, bringing about a modern political party system.113 This launched what is known as the second golden age of Freemasonry in France.
Freemasonry continues to play an important political role in France to this day. In an article by Joshua Levine, he shares the comments of Pierre Mollier, director of archives at the Grand Orient de France. The article reads that
"from 1880 to 1905, the Grand Orient battled the Catholic Church for the soul of France, and still considers the Third Republic its stepchild. 'The Republican party took its support from the Freemasons-a third of the deputies were Masons,' says Mollier. 'All of the Third Republic's progressive legislation comes from here,' he says, pointing around him at the Grand Orient's headquarters on the Rue Cadet. 'The current presidential candidates all knocked on our door this year. For an English or an American Freemason, that's just horrible!'"114
Spain:The modern history of Spain is also intricately linked with Freemasonry. There, "more than in any other country in the world, Freemasonry really was the revolutionary conspiracy which the anti-masonic writers and the propagandists of the Catholic Church described... [The] illegal lodges became a very well-organized secret revolutionary society."115
Martin I. McGregor, Mason and Grand Lecturer, wrote an extensive article about Freemasonry in Spain, detailing the history of the Order there. He describes events in which Freemasons have been prominent, including the Mutiny of Aranjuez in 1808 and the uprising in Cadiz and Revolution of 1868. He goes on to write that during the period of 1875 to 1900, "numerous individual Freemasons achieved notability and were active in positions of power and influence in central government."116
Between 1870 and 1902, Freemason Praxedes Mateo Sagasta, was Prime Minister of Spain eight times.117
The Second Republic, in 1931, was led by Manuel Azana Diaz who became a Freemason in 1932. In addition:
"Freemasonry accounted for 17 Ministers, 5 Deputy Secretaries, 15 Directors General, 183 out of 470 Deputies to Parliament, 5 Ambassadors, 9 Generals of Division and 12 generals of Brigade. Amongst those who were to play leading roles in the future of Spain were Snr. Alejandro Lerroux y Gracia, Minister of State; Snr. Diego Martinez Barrio, Minister of War and Snr. Jose Giral, Minister of the Navy. Not to mention Snr. Jose Salmeron, Director General of Public Works and Mountains. The Mayor of Madrid, Snr. Pedro Rico Lopez was a Freemason, as was Snr. Jaime Ayguade, Mayor of Barcelona. The former Grand Master, Snr. Demofilo de Buen was Counselor of State. Indeed, a sizeable proportion of the membership of Spanish Freemasonry were in a position of power and influence during the Second Republic."118
Mexico:In the fight for the separation of Mexico from Spain, Freemason Miguel Hidalgo y Castilla began the fight in 1810. In 1822, Agustin, a Freemason, became emperor and by 1831, the ideals of Freemasonry were firmly established.119
One of the most famous of Mexican leaders in the 1800s was Benito Juarez, a Freemason. He served as president for five terms, between 1858 and 1872, and is credited with overthrowing the Second Mexican Empire, restoring the Republic and modernizing the country using liberal measures. When the Austrian Archduke Maximilian, a Habsburg, was thrust upon Mexico by Napoleon III in 1862, Benito Juarez and his Liberals led out in the fight against the French. The emperor Maximilian ended up before a firing squad in 1867. Most of the prominent actors during this time period were Masons.120
After Benito Juarez died, Freemason Porfirio Diaz served seven terms as President, between 1876 and 1911. Following his defeat, there were a succession of Presidents who were Masons. More recently, a number of Lodges and "the Supreme Council of the Scottish Rite are closely identified with the ruling party."121
Netherlands:Orangism, a movement within the Dutch republic to restore the princes of Oranges as Stadtholders, led to the Orangist revolution in 1747. A leader of the revolution was Rousset de Missy, who also founded Freemasonry in Amsterdam in 1735. The revolution directly involved his lodge. Another Freemason, William Bentinck, was a key advisor to the new stadtholder, William IV. 122
Greece:Freemasonry is also closely linked with the history of Greek independence. "The Greek revolution in 1821 was an event being sought by generation upon a generation of Greeks, and the role of secret societies was fundamental to its success."123
The secret society, Filiki Eteria, was formed in 1814 with the purpose of overthrowing Ottoman rule in Greece. The society was patterned after Freemasonry, with its goal being an independent Greek state. Their rebellion was planned with the support of Greek communities in Britain and United States and other sympathizers in Western Europe. The society is said to have initiated the war in 1821.124
Freemasons led out in the Revolution, including Germanos III, Gregory V, Theodoros Kolokotronis, Alexandros Mavrokordatos, Alexander Ypsilantis, Nicholas Ypsilanti, Alexander Mourouzis, Ioannis Kapodistrias and others.125
Ioannis Kapodistrias, Freemason, was known as "one of the most distinguished politicians and diplomats of Europe" and is seen as the founder of the modern Greek State and founder of Greek independence.126 His liberal-mindedness was of great concern to Metternich who saw Kapodistrias' increasing influence over Tsar Alexander in Russia.127
In an article about the Filiki Eteria by the Research Institute for Europe and and American Studies, Michaletos Ioannis asserts that
"virtually the revolution was staged by members of the Philiki Etaireia... Needless to say that numerous historical incidents and developments have been either shaped or influenced by societies in Greece; resembling the original Philiki Etaireia one. The expulsion of King Otto in 1862, the Greek-Turkish war in 1897, the revolution in 1909 and the installation of Venizelos, and many other. There is a strong linkage between the formation of secret societies in Greece and the expectation of either peripheral or worldwide events of national interest."128Greece was recognized as an independent nation in 1832. Notably, George I, who was King of Greece from 1863 to 1913, was a Freemason.129
Turkey:In the late 1870s, the Committee of Union and Progress forced the Ottoman Sultan to implement a constitution and Parliament. This Committee, responsible for a military conspiracy, was made up of young Army officers who "were usually Free-masons."130
Italy:Freemasons Giuseppe Mazzini and Giuseppe Garibaldi led out in the Unification of Italy, completed in 1861. These events included the loss of the Papal States by the Vatican and brought on "the particular animosity of the Catholic Church towards all Freemasons, not just the Italians."131
Romania:The work of Freemasons in Romania seems particularly clear and extensive. In an article on the Phoenix Lodge's website, the author boldly states that "Modern Romania, contemporary Romania, has been created by Freemasons. The union of Romanian Principalities have been conceived by masons, realized by brothers and proclaimed on January 24th, 1859 through the election of Ruler Alexandru Ioan Cuza, ruler over Moldavia and Muntenia."132
The list of famous and influential Freemasons in Romania is extensive, including Carol II (King of Romania in 1930-40), C.A. Rosetti (political leader and participant in the Wallachian Revolution of 1848), Alexandru Ioan Cuza (Romanian ruler of the Danubian Principalities - 1859-66), Nicolae Titulescu (Finance and Foreign Minister, President of the General Assembly of the League of Nations - 1930-32) and many politicians. The following list shows the preponderance of Freemasons as Prime Ministers of Romania.
Prime Ministers of Romania who are Freemasons:133
- Mihail Kogalniceanu (Prime Minister - 1863-65)
- Ion Ghica (Prime Minister - 1866)
- Alexandru G. Golescu (Prime Minister - 1870)
- Ion C. Bratianu (twice Prime Minister 1876-1881, 1881-1888)
- Dimitrie Bratianu (Prime Minister - 1881)
- Dimitrie Sturdza (Four-time Prime Minister, 1899 - 1907)
- Titu Maiorescu (Prime Minister - 1912-13)
- Alexandru Vaida-Voevod (Three-time Prime Minister - 1919, 1932, 1933)
- Miron Cristea (Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church - 1925-39, Prime Minister of Romania - 1938-39)
- Octavian Goga (Prime Minister - 1937-38)
- Constantin Argetoianu (Prime Minister -1939)
- Gheorghe Grigore Cantacuzino (twice Prime Minister 1899-1900, 1906-1907)
Poland:Adam Czartoriski, a Polish noble, leading and failing in the 1830 Polish revolution, took refuge in Paris along with many other Polish refugees. From there, he conducted a secret organization for more than thirty years. All of the members of his organization were Freemasons. The Freemasons governing in England and France sponsored Czartoriski's operation and cooperated with them to "apply their political pressure directly on the independence movements in the Balkans."134
Argentina:The revolution of 1810 in Buenos Aires led to the independence of Argentina from Spain. Most of the leaders were Freemasons. The revolutionary army from Buenos Aires liberated other parts of South America from Spain, including Chile and Venezuela. Major players who were Freemasons included General Jose de San Martin, Simon Bolivar and Bernardo O'higgins.135
In addition to these countries, Freemasons have played key roles in many others, including Israel, Russia, Sweden, India, China, Philippines and Cuba.
Continue to: Head #8
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