Fawcett, Colonel Percy Harrison: Colonel Fawcett was born in 1867 in Devon, England. At the age of nineteen he was given a commission in the Royal Artillery. He served in Ceylon for several years where he met and married his wife. Later he performed secret service work in North Africa. Fawcett found himself bored with Army life and learned the art of surveying, hoping to land a more interesting job. Then in 1906 came the offer from the Society: His ticket to adventure.
The Colonel arrived in La Paz, Bolivia, in June of 1906 ready to start his expedition. After a disagreement with the government over expenses ,Fawcett started into the heart of the continent to begin the boundary survey. He quickly found that just getting to the area where he was to be working would be an ordeal in itself. The trail lead up a precipitous path to a pass in the mountains at 17,000 feet. It took him and his companions two hours to go four miles and climb 6,000 feet. The pack mules would struggle up the path 30 feet at a time, then stop, gasping for breath in the thin air. The party was afraid that if they overworked the animals, they would die.
Hostile People - Arriving at the town of Cobija, Fawcett quickly got a taste of how difficult life was in the interior of South America. Disease was common and he was told that the death rate in the town was nearly fifty percent a year. Cut off from the outside world, many depressed inhabitants sought comfort by abusing alcohol. One night one of the local army officers became enraged by his subordinate's refusal to join him in a card game. Drunk, the officer drew his sword and went after the man, injuring him. When another soldier tried to assist the injured man the officer turned on him, chasing him around a hut. The fellow sought refuge in Fawcett's room, but the officer followed him inside.
"Where is that dirty so-and-so?" the officer roared. "Where have you hidden him?"
When Fawcett reprimanded the officer for chasing unarmed men with his sword, the officer cursed at the Colonel and drew his revolver. Fawcett grabbed the man's wrist and struggled with him, finally forcing the gun from his hand.
Bolivia was a lawless frontier is those days, much like the American West had been a half century before. Fawcett, in fact, met an American gunslinger named Harvey. The red-bearded, silent man was quick with his revolver and sure with his aim. Harvey, a bandit, had found the United States too civilized and dodged the Texas Rangers, working his way down through Mexico into South America. He had held up a mining company in a neighboring country, and there was a large reward on his head. Bolivia had no extradition law, however, and he was safe in this new frontier.
Colonel Fawcett was appalled by treatment of the native South American Indians. Although slavery was illegal, rubber plantation owners would often organize trips into the jungle for the purpose of capturing slaves to be used as rubber collectors. Some of the tribes, in return, became quite hostile toward those of European decent. Fawcett believed that if you treated the Indians with kindness and understanding, you would receive kindness in return. During a trip up the Heath River to find its source in 1910, Fawcett had a unique opportunity to test his theory.
He and his group had been warned off traveling up the Heath because the tribes along it had a reputation for unrestrained savagery. "To venture up into the midst of them is sheer madness," exclaimed an army major. Fawcett went anyway.
After a week paddling up the river, the party rounded a bend and ran straight into an Indian encampment perched on a sandbar. The natives were as surprised as the expedition. "Dogs barked, men shouted, women screamed and reached for their children" Fawcett recalled. The natives hid in the trees while the group grounded their canoes on the sandbar. Arrows whizzed by the men or fell around them. Fawcett tried some peace overtures using native words he had learned, but the message didn't seem to be getting through. Then he had an idea. One of the group was seated just beyond arrow range and was told to play his accordion. The man sang "A Bicycle Made for Two", "Suwannee River", "Onward Christian Soldiers" and other tunes. Finally Fawcett noticed the lyrics had changed to "They've-all-stopped-shooting-at-us." Sure enough, the singer was right. Fawcett approached the natives and greeted them. Gifts were exchanged as a sign of friendship.
Not all contacts with the Indians ended so well. During a trip down the Chocolatal River, the pilot of the boat Fawcett was traveling on went off to inspect a nearby road. When he didn't come back Fawcett found him dead with 42 arrows in his body.
Dangerous Animals - People were only one of the dangers of the jungle. The animal kingdom was another. One night while camped near the Yalu River ,the Colonel was climbing into his sleeping bag when he felt something "hairy and revolting" scuttle up his arm and over his neck. It was a gigantic apazauca spider. It clung to his hand fiercely while Fawcett tried to shake it off. The spider finally dropped to the ground and walked away without attacking. The animal's bite is poisonous and sometimes fatal.
Vampire bats were also a nuisance in some remote areas. At night these creatures would come to bite and lap up blood from sleepers. Fawcett reported that though they slept under mosquito nets, any portion of bodies touching the net or protruding beyond it would be attacked. In the morning they would find their hammocks saturated with blood.
Near Potrero, wild bulls became a problem for one of Fawcett's expeditions. The group was traveling in an ox cart which gave them some protection. Even so, the group was attacked by three bulls one day. They managed to drive them off only after killing one animal and riddling the other two with bullets. On that same trip Fawcett was fifty yards behind the rest of the group when a big red bull appeared between him and the cart. The Colonel wasn't carrying a rifle and there were no trees or other places to seek refuge. Fawcett was able to get past the animal, as it snorted, lashed its tail and tore up the ground, by moving slowly while fixing it with a a hopefully hypnotic stare.
Snakes were also a constant threat too. Once while traveling with a Texan named Ross, they were attacked by a seven-foot long "Bushmaster," a deadly poisonous snake. The men leapt out of the way as the Texan pulled his revolver, putting two slugs through the ugly head of the creature. On close examination Ross realized the snake had bitten him, but the fangs had sunk into his tobacco pouch. His skin showed two dents where the fangs had pressed against him, but never broke through. His skin was wet with venom. The pouch had saved his life.
Fawcett often found it necessary to swim rivers in order to get a rope across for hauling equipment over. The Colonel had to be very careful there were no cuts or open sores on his body that might attract piranha fish. Swarms of these fish have been known to strip the flesh off a man in minutes if he was unlucky enough to fall into the water were they where congregated. One of Fawcett's companions lost two fingers to them while washing his blood stained hands in the river.
Though not poisonous, the giant anaconda is probably the most feared snake in the jungle. Fawcett had a run-in with one not long after he arrived in South America. In his diary he noted: "We were drifting easily along the sluggish current not far below the confluence of the Rio Negro when almost under the bow of the igarit'e [boat] there appeared a triangular head and several feet of undulating body. It was a giant anaconda. I sprang for my rifle as the creature began to make its way up the bank, and hardly waiting to aim, smashed a .44 soft-nosed bullet into its spine, ten feet below the wicked head."
The boat stopped so that the Colonel could examine the body. Despite being fatally wounded, "shivers ran up and down the body like puffs of wind on a mountain tarn." Though they had no measuring device along with them, Fawcett estimated the creature was sixty-two feet in length and 12-inches in diameter.
Indifferent Nature - Colonel Fawcett probably came closest to death during his trips not from human or animal agents but from the geography of the land itself. While traveling down the uncharted Madidi River by raft, his expedition encountered a series of dangerous rapids. With each the speed of the rafts increased until they were rushing down the river uncontrolled. Finally, the river widened and the velocity slowed. The crews had just given a sigh of relief when they rounded a steep bluff and the roar of a waterfall filled their ears. One of the rafts was able to make it to shore, but Fawcett's was caught in the current. With the water too deep to use a pole to snag the bottom and turn away, the raft shot over the drop.
Fawcett later recounted, "...the raft seemed to poise there for an instant before it fell from under us. Turning over two or three times as it shot through the air, the balsa crashed down into the black depths."
The group survived, but lost much of their equipment. "Looking back we saw what we had come through. The fall was about twenty feet high, and where river dropped the canyon narrowed to a mere ten feet across; through this bottleneck the huge volume of water gushed with terrific force, thundering down into the a welter of brown foam and black-topped rocks. It seemed incredible that we could have survived that maelstrom!"
During a trip to map the Rio Verde River and discover its source, Fawcett came face to face with starvation. The expedition started well: The land around the mouth of the river had plenty of game and the group took what they estimated to be three weeks worth of food with them. Then the expedition was forced to abandon their boats because of rapids, and had to continue up the riverbank on foot.
Because the expedition needed to minimize the weight they would carry, Fawcett decided to bury some of his equipment and 60 gold sovereigns (worth about $300) in metal cases near where they landed. Fawcett was amazed when years later stories came to him about a "Verde Treasure" that had been left behind by his expedition. The story had been retold and embellished so many times that the size of the treasure had been magnified to 60,000 gold sovereigns. The Colonel was particularly amused because the story never mentioned the fact the he had retrieved the cases after the trip was over. He was sure the story would attract future wouldbe treasure hunters.
As they walked upriver the water, which had been clean, turned bitter and no fish could be found. Then game also seemed to disappear. Soon the supplies they carried were exhausted. For ten more days the group pressed on, despite only having consumed some bad honey and a few bird eggs. Finally, the found the source of the river and charted it.
Freed from the responsibility of charting the river, Fawcett tried to figure out the quickest route to somewhere they could get food. Deciding the best chance was to go over the Ricardo Franco Hills, the group tried to work their way up canyons that would lead them to the top.
The hills were flat-topped and mysterious. They looked like giant tables and their forested tops were completely cut off from the jungle below. When Fawcett later told Conan Doyle about these hills, the writer pictured the isolated tops populated with surviving dinosaurs. Doyle used these hills as the location for his famous novel The Lost World.
The expedition quickly found that crossing the hills was futile, and returning the way they had come impossible. Colonel Fawcett instead decided to follow the direction the streams in the region were flowing, hoping that it would get them out. Days passed and no food. One of the expedition's Indian assistants lay down to die, and only the prodding of Fawcett's hunting knife in his ribs got him moving again.
After twenty days without food, the group was at its limit. Fawcett prayed audibly for relief. Then fifteen minutes later a deer appeared 300 yards away. Fawcett unslung his gun. The target was too far away and his hands were shaking, but,in a miracle the Colonel could only attribute to a higher power, the bullet found its mark, killing the deer instantly.
The group consumed every part of the deer: skin, fur and all. The expedition's fortune had turned and within six days they were back in a town with the Verde trip only a bad memory.
For the first three years Fawcett had worked for the Boundary Commission charting the region. When that job came to an end, Fawcett retired from the military and continued exploring on his own, financing the trips with help from newspapers and other businesses. After returning to England to serve in World War I, the Colonel was again drawn back to the South American jungle. As time went on, he became more and more interested in the archaeology of the region. In total he made seven expeditions into wilderness between 1906 and 1924.
The Final Expedition - Finding reliable companions for his trips had always been a problem, but by 1925 his oldest son, Jack, had reached an age where he could join his father in the field.
Fawcett, by examining records and sifting through old stories, had become convinced that there was a large, ancient city concealed in the wilds of Brazil. Fawcett called this city "Z" and planned an expedition that consisted of himself, his son, Jack, and a friend of Jack's. Fawcett had always preferred small expeditions that could live off the land, thinking that a small group would look less like an invasion to the Indians and therefore be less likely to be attacked. The route was carefully planned.
Fawcett, concerned with others, left word that should they not return, a rescue expedition was not to be mounted. He felt that it would be too dangerous. On May 29th, 1925, a message was sent from Fawcett to his wife, indicating that they were ready to enter unexplored territory. The three were sending back the assistants that had helped them to this point and were ready to go on by themselves. Fawcett told his wife "You need have no fear of failure..." It was the last anyone ever heard of the expedition. They disappeared into the jungle never to be seen again.
Despite Fawcett's wishes, several rescue expeditions tried to find him, but without success. Occasionally there were intriguing reports that he'd been seen, but none of these were ever confirmed.
Fortune, Dion: was born Violet Mary Firth in Llandudno, North Wales on 6th December 1890, the daughter of a solicitor. Her interest in occultism was sparked when she was working as a lay Freudian analyst around the time of the First World War. She was trained by a doctor named Moriarty who specialised in astroetheric psychological conditions (and who later provided the inspiration for her series of short stories The Secrets of Doctor Taverner). Having found her 'path' in the Western Mystery Tradition she joined the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn in 1919.
Moving to London in 1920, she joined an offshoot branch of the Golden Dawn run by Moina Mathers, widow of MacGregor Mathers, one of the Golden Dawn's founders. She began to write articles under the name of Dion Fortune (taken from her family motto Deo Non Fortuna, 'God not luck'), which were later published in book form as The Esoteric Philosophy of Love and Marriage, Sane Occultism and Psychic Self-Defence, the first of her many occult textbooks. These articles enraged Moina Mathers, who felt that Dion Fortune was betraying the secrets of the Order.
Dion Fortune became increasingly disillusioned with the Golden Dawn, and after Dr. Moriarty's death in 1921 she set about founding her own esoteric order with a few of Moriarty's students and a few members of the Theosophical Society in London. In 1924 her little group bought an old officers' hut from the army and erected it at the foot of Glastonbury Tor in Somerset. This site, which they named Chalice Orchard, was the first headquarters of the Fraternity of the Inner Light (later re-named the Society of the Inner Light). Soon afterwards they also acquired a large old house -- 3 Queensborough Terrace, London -- which was big enough for certain members to live in as well as being an established magical lodge. Among those living there were Dion Fortune and her husband Dr. Penry Evans, although they divided their time between London and Glastonbury, and eventually divorced. The society soon became an initiatory school of high calibre. Working in trance mediumship, Dion Fortune made contacts with certain inner plane adepts, or Masters, whose influence on the Western Esoteric Tradition is still vital to this day.
During the 1930s Dion Fortune wrote several esoteric novels which contain much practical detail which was considered too 'secret' at that time to be published in her articles or textbooks. She also pioneered Qabalah as a key to the Western Mystery Tradition, and her book The Mystical Qabalah is still one of the best texts available on the subject. Her other main work was The Cosmic Doctrine, which was received mediumistically and originally reserved for initiates only. Its text is abstract and difficult to follow, and is intended for meditation rather than as a straight textbook.
The Society of the Inner Light continues to operate its lodge at 3 Queensborough Terrace in London, and Fortune writes and speaks occasionally.
Fraud: A very large part is played by fraud in spiritualistic practices, both in the physical and psychical, or automatic, phenomena, but especially in the former. The frequency with which mediums have been convicted of fraud (for example the spectacular case of Eileen Garrett) has, led, induced many people to abandon the study of psychical research, judging the whole bulk of the phenomena to be fraudulently produced. Yet the question of fraud is itself an interesting and complicated one, not unworthy of the attention of the student, for we find in connection with spiritualism not only simple deception practised with a view to gaining pecuniary advantages, but also many instances of systematic and apparently deliberate trickery where there is no evident reward to be obtained, and even cases where the medium is, so far as can be judged, entirely innocent and ignorant of the fraud he obviously practises. And it may be added that after all precautions have been taken which science and commonsense can suggest, there remains a portion of the phenomena which still continues to be inexplicable, and which justifies the interest now so widely shown in psychic science.
In considering the important factor of fraud, we must distinguish between conscious and unconscious fraud, though, as will be shown hereafter, it is at times possible for the one to shade imperceptibly into the other. Conscious fraud most often appears in connection with the physical phenomena. Almost at the outset of the spiritualistic movement, i.e., in 1851, three doctors, professors of the University of Buffalo, N.Y., demonstrated that the rappings which attended the Sisters Fox were produced by the manipulation of the knee and toe joints, a fact which was shortly afterwards corroborated by Mrs. Cluver, a relative 'of the Fox family. Since that time many mediums have at one time or another been convicted of fraud, and every phase of physical mediumship been discredited.
Slate-writing, spirit photography, materialisation, have all in turn been exposed, though the latter, at least, seems able to survive any number of exposures. Time and again, sitters have beheld the form and features of the medium in the materialised spirit; shadowy figures in filmy draperies, have been shown to be mannikins wrapped in muslin, and false beards and white draperies have been found about the person of the medium. Apports have been smuggled into the seance - room - jewels, flowers, perfumes, objects, art - in order to be showered upon the sitters by generously - disposed " spirits." Threads and human hairs have been used to move furniture and other objects.
Sometimes more elaborate and complicated machinery is provided, but more often the medium depends upon sleight of hand and skilful suggestion to accomplish his ends. Conjurers have frequently been admitted to seances, and have failed to discover the modus operandi of the various feats, but this fact, though a great deal has been made of it by spiritualists, cannot be taken to have any significance, since conjurers are often quite mystified by each other's performances.
Freemasonry - History and Origin: Though it would not be exactly correct to say that the history of Freemasonry was lost in the mists of antiquity, it is competent to remark that although to a certain degree traceable, its records are of a scanty nature, and so crossed by the trails of other mystical brotherhoods, that disentanglement is an extremely difficult process.
The ancient legend of its foundation at the time of the building of the Temple at Jerusalem is manifestly traditional. If one might hazard an opinion, it would seem that at a very early epoch in the history of civilization, a caste of builders in stone arose, who jealously guarded the secret of their craft. In all probability this caste was prehistoric. It is not unreasonable to assume this when we possess plenty of proof that an ancient caste of bronze - workers flourished in every country in Europe and Asia; and if this be admitted, and it cannot well be refuted in the light of recent researches, - (see Journal of the Gypsy Lore Society for 1913) - there is nothing absurd or impossible in the contention that a similar school of workers in stone should have arisen at a like early period. We know that it is probable that the old caste of bronze workers had an esoteric language of their own, which has come down to us as the Shelta Thari (q.v.) spoken generally by the tinkler people of Great Britain and Ireland.
If such a caste can elaborate a secret language and cling jealousy to the " mysteries " of metal - working, there is no reason to doubt the existence of a similar caste of masons. We tender this theory for what it is worth, as it is unsupported by any great authority on the subject. Where such a caste of operative masons arose is altogether a separate question, and cannot be dealt with here; but it must obviously have been in a country where working in stone was one of the principal arts. It is also almost certain that this early brotherhood must have been hierophantic. Its principal work to begin with would undoubtedly consist in the raising of temples and similar structures, and as such it would come into very close contact with the priesthood, if indeed it was not wholly directed by it.
In early civilization but two classes of dwelling receive the attention of the architect, - the temple and the palace. For example, among, the ruins of Egypt and Babylon, remains of the private house are rare, but the temple and the royal residence are everywhere conspicuous, and we know that among the ruins of Central America temples and palaces alone remain - the huts of the surrounding dwellers having long ago disappeared. The temple is the nucleus of the early city. Around the worship of the gods crystallizes commerce, agriculture, and all the affairs of life. All roads lead to the temple. Striding for a moment over the gap of years between early Babylon and Egypt and mediaeval Britain, we find the priesthood in close touch with the masons.
A mediaeval cathedral took more than one generation to erect, and in that time many masons came and went around the fane. The lodge was invariably founded hard by the rising cathedral or abbey, and apprentices and others were entered as opportunity offered: indeed a man might serve his apprenticeship and labour all through his life upon the one building, without ever seeing any work elsewhere. The evidence as to whether the master - masons were also architects is very conflicting, and it has been held that the priests were the architects of the British cathedrals, - the master - masons and operatives merely carrying out their designs.
There is good evidence however that this is not wholly true. Authorities are at one in declaring that of all arts architecture is by far the most intricate. It is undoubtedly the one which requires a long and specific training. Questions of stress and strain of the most difficult description arise, and it seems incredible that anyone with the most superficial knowledge of the subject should believe that ecclesiastics, who had not undergone any special training should be qualified to compose plans of the most perfect and intricate description for the most noble and remarkable edifices ever raised in this country.
We know that professional architects existed at a very early period; and why the priesthood should be credited with their work, it is difficult to understand; but instances are on record where the priests of a certain locality have taken to themselves the credit of planning the cathedral of the diocese. Be this as it may, the " mystery " of building was sufficiently deep to require extensive knowledge and experience and to a great extent this justifies the jealousy with which the early masons regarded its secrets. Again, this jealousy with which it was kept from the vulgar gaze may have been. racial in its origin, and may have arisen from such considerations as the following:
" Let no stranger understand this craft of ours. Why should we make it free to the heathen and the foreigner ? "
This also smacks of priestcraft, but if masonry originated hierophantic ally, it certainly did not continue a preserve any religion, and is nowadays probably the chiefest abomination of the Roman Catholic hierarchy, which has not hesitated to publish and disseminate the grossest libels regarding it. it is to Britain that we must look for evidence as to the evolutionary line of masonry.
Before the founding of the Grand Lodge, we find that York and the North of England in general was regarded as the most ancient seat of the fraternity in this island. Indeed - without stretching probabilities too far, the line of evolution so far as York is concerned is quite remarkable. We know for example that in the early days of that city a temple of Serapis existed there, which was afterwards a monastery of - the Begging Friars, and the mysteries of this god existed beside the Roman Collevia - or Craftsmen's Society. It is also considered that the crypt of York Minster affords evidence of the progress of masonry from Roman to Saxon times. It is stated that it had a mosaic pavement of blue tiles laid in the form employed in the first degree of masonry, and is said to show the sites of three seats used by the master and his wardens during the construction of the building.
It is also an undoubted fact that the craft occasionally met in this crypt during last century. There is thus reason to believe even though the evidence be of a, the foregoing does not embrace it that the early masons of Britain were probably influenced by Romano - Egyptian mystical societies, and that their w, , n craft societies drew some of their practices and constitutions froni. these alien schools. Masonic tradition goes to show that even in the begiflul4rig of the fourteenth century masonry in Britain was then regarded as a thing of great antiquity. Lodge records for the most part only date back to the sixteenth century in the oldest instances, but ancient manuscripts are extant which undoubtedly relate to masonry.
Thus the old charge -, embodied in the Regius which was unearthed in 1839 by Mr, Halliwell Philips are dated at 1390 and contain a curious legend of the craft, which tells how the necessity of finding work of some description drove men to consult Euclid, who recommended masonry as a craft to them. It goes on to tell how masonry was founded in Egypt, and how it entered England in the time of Athelstan. The necessity for keeping close counsel as regards the secrets of the craft is insisted upon in rude verse. The Cooke MS. dates from the first part of the fifteenth century, and likewise contains versions of the old charges. Egypt is also regarded here - as the motherland of masonry, and Athelstan is the medium for the introduction of the craft into the island of Britain. But that this manuscript was used among masons at a later date was proved by the discovery of a more modern version dated about 1087, in 1880, and known as the William Watson MS. In all about seventy of these old charges and pseudo - histories have been discovered since 1860. They have all much in common and are of English origin.
A great deal has been written to attempt to prove that British freemasonry borrowed extensively from continental secret societies, such as the Steinmetz of Germany, the Rosicrucians (q.v.) and similar fellowships. The truth probably lies however in the circumstance that the coming and going of students of occultism throughout Europe was so constant, and so frequent were their communications that practically all those societies were, in touch with one another. Again many persons belonged to several of them at once, and imported the rules and constitution of one body into another.
No student of occultism can fail to be struck with the close resemblance of the constitutions of nearly all the mystical fellowships of the middle ages, and the resemblance of the verbiage employed by their founders and protagonists. It must also be insisted that the speculative or mystic part of masonry was in the middle ages merely a tradition with the brotherhood, whatever it may have been in earlier times, and whatever close connection the craft may have had with hierophantic or mystic Philosophy. The speculative element, we repeat, was merely traditional and symbolical as at present, and not practical; but this tradition was to serve to keep alight the flame of speculative mysticism which was to be aroused again at the end of the medieval period.
When political freedom awoke in Europe, the necessity for the existence of secret societies vanished, but the persons who delighted in their formation and management still remained. The raison d'etre of these fellowships had disappeared, but the love of mysticism, not to say the mysterious, was perhaps stronger than ever. What then occurred ? Simply this: that all those persons who found the occupation of floating and managing real secret societies are, cast about for anything in the shape of a mystic fellowship that they could find. They soon discovered the craft of masonry which although operative possessed mystical traditions. The attraction was mutual, and astrologers, alchemists and others soon crowded the lodges, to such purpose that at the ledge held in 1646 in London, there was not an operative mason present, and at that held in 1682, the speculative branch was overwhelming in its numbers. Looking back a little, it is noteworthy that the freemasons in medieval times formed a fellowship or guild. closely resembling all its constitution that of similar trade guilds both in Britain and the continent; such as the Weavers, Tailors, Fishmongers, and so forth. But although these guilds preserved their " mysteries, " where they possessed them, With considerable jealousy, they do not appear to have embedded in their constitutions the same ancient practices and ritual which go to show so strongly that masonry is undoubtedly an institution of great antiquity.
It has also been suggested that freemasonry was introduced into Europe by the Knights Templar. It would be difficult to discover a similar institution which in the opinion of some authorities had not been founded by that order; and it is difficult to believe that the haughty chivalry of Norman times would have claimed any connection whatsoever with an operative craft. Nevertheless there are indications that Scottish Rite Masonry has strong Templar Influences.
Many masons of the middle of the seventeenth century, such as Robert Moray and Elias Ashmole, were diligent students of occult science. and Sir Christopher Wren was a student of hermetic art.
It has often been put forward that Scotland was the original home of freemasonry in these islands, but although the craft was undoubtedly ancient in that country, there does not appear to be any adequate proof that it was older than in England. Some of the Scottish lodges, such as No. 1 Edinburgh, Kilwinning, and Aberdeen, possess very ancient records, and it is probable that this has led to the assumption that the brotherhood was of greater antiquity in North Britain than in England. But the circumstance that the craft was probably introduced into England in Roman times, where it has in all likelihood flourished ever since, tends to dispose of such a theory. The history of modern freemasonry begins with the formation of the Grand Lodge of England, which was inaugurated on St. John the Baptist's Day 1717 by several old lodges.
This represented the first central governing body of the fraternity, and before this time each lodge had been self - governing. Many lodges speedily came under its aegis, and Ireland formed a Grand lodge of her own in 1725 but Scotland did not follow till 1736, and even then many lodges held aloof from the central body, only 33 out of 100 falling into line. From one or other of these three governing bodies all the regular lodges throughout the world have arisen, so that modern masonry may truthfully be said to be of entirely British origin. This is not the place to enter into an elaborate discussion of the history and affairs of modern masonry, and we are chiefly exercised regarding its mystical position and tendencies. Regarding these we must be brief.
As regards the lower ranks of the craft, it consists almost entirely in these islands at least of persons who have in great measure treated it as a mere friendly society, and it is only in the higher ranks that any real - 'idea of the true significance of the mystical tenets preserved and taught is retained. The ordinary mason, who preserves a cryptic and mysterious silence when the affairs of his craft are alluded to, merely serves as a laughing - stock to the modern well - equipped mystic. Certain signs and hand grips are in use amongst masons, and the possession of these, and of a ritual - the significance of which he rarely comprehends, the average brother fondly imagines, renders him somewhat superior to the layman. It is extremely doubtful if among even the higher ranks of masonry, the deepest significance of the tradition of the craft is thoroughly realised, and if the absurd works which every now and then emanate from eminent masons regarding the history of their craft be accepted as criteria of their higher knowledge, it must indeed be of slight proportions.
As has been said, continental masonry is undoubtedly the offspring of British systems. This is not to say that in France and Germany there were no masonic lodges in existence before the formation of the English Grand Lodge; but all modern lodges in these countries undoubtedly date from the inception of the English central body. French masonry possessed and possesses many rites which differ entirely from those accepted by the British craft. We find the beginnings of modern French masonry in the labours of Martinez Pasqually (q.v.), St. Martin (q.v.), and perhaps to a great extent in those of Cagliostro (q.v.) who toiled greatly to found his Egyptian rite in France. It is noticeable, however, that he had become a member of a London lodge before attempting this. In France, masonry has always had more or less a political complexion, and nowadays the extreme enmity existing between it and the Roman Catholic church in that country favours the inclusion in its ranks of persons possessing ideals by no means in consonance with the very upright standard of British masonry. In Germany, it has been said that Steinmetz approximated very strongly to the British masons, if they were not originally one and the same; but the later lodges in Germany all date from that founded in 1733.
The entrance of masons into the various degrees involves an elaborate system of symbolic ritual, of which the essence is uniform throughout all lodges. The members are classified in numerous degrees, of which the first three are entered apprentice, fellow - craft, and master - mason. Each lodge possesses its own byelaws, subject to the Book of Constitution of the Grand Lodge.
Wild stories have been circulated, chiefly by the Roman Catholic enemies of masonry, regarding the practice of diabolic occultism in the higher ranks of the craft. To begin with, it is extremely unlikely that more than three or four persons connected with it possess the requisite knowledge to thus offend against the Christian proprieties, and the childish asseverations of French writers on the subject may be dismissed with a smile. The " occultism " and " transcendentalism " of the majority of zealous brethren are usually of the mildest character possible, and are in some measure related to the mysterious attitude of the average mason, when dark hints as to lodge doings are whispered of among his admiring relatives.
Friends of God: A mystical society founded in Germany in the fourteenth century, for the purpose of ministering to the poor by preaching and sacrament. Its members included men and women of every rank and station; not only monks and nuns, but knights, farmers, artizans, merchants. Their law was: " That universal love, commanded by Christ, and not to be gainsay by his vicar ' " Their prophecies and warnings roused the ire of certain of the clergy, and they were charged with sectarianism.
Garinet, Jules : Author of a History Of Magic in France, Paris, 1818. In this curious work will be found a description of the Sabbath, a dissertation on demons, a discourse on the superstitions connected with magic among the ancients and the moderns.
Geber:, otherwise Abou Moussah Djafar al Sofi, was a native of Haman, in Mesopotamia, or, according to other accounts, a Spanish Moor, born at Savile, somewhere about the end of the eighth century, though all dates concerning him are extremely doubtful. Practically nothing is known of his life. He undertook wide experiments in metallurgy and chemistry, with the object of discovering the constituent elements of metals, in the course of which he stumbled upon nitric acid and red oxide of mercury. It is, , indeed, upon actual discoveries that his reputation is based, and not upon the many spurious treatises which have been attributed to him, and which embrace the entire gamut of the sciences. His alleged extant works, which are in Latin, cannot but be regarded with suspicion, especially as several mediaeval writers adopted his name.
Genius: Is generally used as the name of a superior class of aerial beings, holding an intermediate rank between mortals and immortals. That, at least, appears to be the signification of " Daemon, " the corresponding term in Greek. It is probable, that the whole system of Demonology was invented by the Platonic philosophers, and engrafted by degrees on the popular mythology. The Platonists professed, however, to derive their doctrines from the " theology of the ancients, " so that this system may have come originally from the East, where it formed a part of the tenets of Zoroaster. This sage ascribed all the operations of nature to the agency of celestial beings, the ministers of one supreme first cause, to whose most visible and brilliant image, Fire, homage was paid as his representative. Some Roman writers speak of " the Genius " as " the God of Nature, " or " Nature " itself, but their notions seem to have been modified by, if not formed from, etymological cornsiderations, more likely to mislead than to afford a certain clue to the real meaning of the term.
Gehenna (otherwise Hell): The word is derived from the Hebrew ge and Hinnom, the Valley of Hinnom - originally a valley in Palestine where the Jews passed their children through the fire to Moloch, the god of the Ammonites. Gehenna is popularly regarded as a place of torment to which the wicked are consigned when they leave this earth: it is pictured as a bottomless pit, lit only by the fire which is never quenched. In Dante and Milton, we have diverse descriptions of Hell - the one of unutterable anguish, horror and despair; the other more sublimely imaginative, and pierced with rays of faith and love. The locality of Hell, and the duration of its torments, have for centuries been the subject of much questioning.
By some, it is believed, that there is a purgatorial region - a kind of upper Gehenna, " in which the souls of just men are cleansed by a temporary punishment - before they are admitted to Heaven. It was believed that during this period the soul could revisit the places and persons whom it had loved. By the Persians, Gehenna was understood as the place inhabited by the divs, or rebellious angels, and to which they had been confined when they refused to bow down before the first man. Gehenna is used in the New Testament for Hell, and is practically synonymous with the Greek " Hades."
Gematria: along with teinuyah, was the science of the dual interpretation of the Kabbalistic alphabet, which composed the notary art, which is fundamentally the complete science of the tarot (q.v.) signs and their complex and varied application to the definition of all secrets.
Gilles de Laval: Lord of Raiz, and Marshal of France, the "Blue Beard" of our nursery legends, and a famous sorcerer, was born about the year 1420, of one of the most famous families of Brittany. His father died when he was in his twentieth year, and the impetuous lad found himself possessed of unlimited power and wealth. By birth, he was connected with the Roceys, the Craons, and the _Montmorencys. Through his father's decease he became the lord of fifteen princely domains, yielding a revenue of three hundred thousand livres. He was handsome, lithe, well - limbed, but distinguished by the appendage of a. beard of bluish black. His address was fascinating, his erudition extensive, his courage unimpeachable. Everything seemed to promise a splendid and illustrious career, instead of that dark and miserable history which has associated the name of Blue Beard with so many traditions of horror and legends of atrocious crimes.
At the outset he did nothing to justify an evil augury. He served with zeal and gallantry in the wars of Charles VL against the English, and had fought under Joan of Arc in the ever memorable Siege of Orleans. His exploits procured him from a grateful king the reward of the high dignity of Marshal of France. From this point his career tended downwards. He retired to his Castle of Champtoce and indulged in the display of the most luxurious state. Two hundred horsemen accompanied him on his travels, and his train, when he went hunting, exceeded in magnificence that of the King himself.
His retainers wore the most sumptuous dresses; his horses were caparisoned with the richest trappings; his castle gates were thrown open day and night to all comers, for whom an ox was daily roasted whole, and sheep, and pigs, and poultry, wine, mead, and hippocras provided in sufficient quantities for five hundred persons. He carried the same love of pomp into his devotion. His principal chaplain, whom he called a bishop, a dean, a chanter, two archdeacons, four vicars, a schoolmaster, twelve assistant chaplains, and eight choristers, composed his ecclesiastical establishment.
Each of these had his horse and his servant; all were dressed in robes of scarlet and furs, and had costly appointments. Sacred vessels, crucifixes, all of gold and silver, were transported with them wherever their lord went, together with many organs, each carried by six men. He was exceedingly desirous that all the priests of his chapel should be entitled to wear the mitre, and he sent many embassies to Rome to obtain this privilege, but without success. He maintained a choir of twenty - five young children of both sexes, and these he caused to be instructed in singing by the best masters of the (lay. He had also his comedians, his morris - dancers, and his jugglers, and every hour was crowned with some sensual gratification or voluptuous pleasure.
In 1443, this magnificent young seigneur wedded Catherine, the heiress of the noble House of Thouars, an event which afforded him fresh occasions of displaying his insane passion for luxurious pomp. fie gave the most splendid banquets; he figured in the most chivalric tournaments. His guests, who came from all parts to share in the revels of Champtoce, knew not which to admire the most, his skill in all knightly exercises, or his profound erudition. " He had espoused a young woman of high birth, " says Eliphas Levi, " and kept her practically shut up in his castle at Machecoul, which had a tower with the entrance walled up." A report was spread by the Marshal that it was in a ruinous state, and no one sought to penetrate therein. This, notwithstanding Madame de Raiz, who was frequently alone during the dark hours, saw red lights moving to and fro in this tower; but she did not venture to question her husband, whose bizarre and sombre character filled her with extreme terror.
The legal state maintained by the Lord of Retz was ordered on so extensive a scale that it even exhausted his apparently inexhaustible revenues, and to procure the funds for his pleasures and his extravagance, he was compelled to sell several of his baronies. Then the Marshal attempted to dispose of his seigniory of Ingrande. But his heirs - at - law, indisposed to see their valuable inheritance gradually pared away into nothing, solicited the interference of the King, and a royal edict prohibited him from selling his paternal estates. In this predicament, most men would have curtailed their profusion, and endeavoured to economize their income, but Gilles de Retz was unable to live in diminished splendour. The luxuries that surrounded him were all that for him made life. To have shorn him of his magnificence would have been to strike a death - blow at his heart. Money, therefore, became the principal object of his desires, and to obtain money it seemed to his excited imagination only necessary that he should turn alchemist.
He sent accordingly into Italy, Spain, and Germany, and invited the adepts in the great science to repair from every land to the splendours of Champtoce. Amongst those who obtained the summonses, and continued attached to him during - the remainder of his career, were Prelati, an alchemist of Padua, and a physician of Poitou, whose name is not given. At their instigation he built a stately laboratory, and joined by other adepts, eagerly began the search for the Philosopher's Stone. For a twelve month the furnaces blazed away right merrily, and a thousand chemical combinations disposed of the Marshal's gold and silver. Meanwhile, the alchemists feasted on the most luxurious viands, and quaffed the rarest wines; and so admirable were their quarters that, as far as they were concerned, they would have prosecuted the quest of the elixir vital, or the Philosopher's Stone, until death cut short their labours.
The impetuosity of the Lord of Retz could not abide such lingering processes. He wanted wealth, and he wanted it immediately. If the grand secret could not be discovered by any quicker method, he would have none of it, nor, indeed, as his resources were fast melting away, would it avail him much if theseirch occupied several years. At this junction the Poitou Sail physician and the Paduan alchemist whispered to him of quicker and bolder methods of attaining the desired alkahest, if he had the courage to adopt them. Gilles de Retz immediately dismissed the inferior adepts, and put himself in the hands of the two abler and subtler masters. These persuaded him that the Evil One could at once reveal to them the secret, and offered to summons him ex tenebris, for the Marshal to conclude with him whatever arrangement he thought best. As long as he saved his soul, the Lord of Retz professed himself willing to do anything the devil might command.
In this frame of mind he went to the physician at midnight to a solitary recess in the neighbouring wood, where the physician drew the magic circle and made ' the customary conjurations. Gilles listened to the invocation with wonder, and expectant that every moment the Spirit of Darkness would burst upon the startled silence. After a lapse of thirty minutes, the physician manifested signs of the greatest alarm; his hair seemed to stand on end, his eyes glared with unutterable horror; he talked wildly, his knees shook, a deadly pallor overspread his countenance, and he sank to the ground. Gilles was a man of dauntless bravery, and gazed upon the strange scene unmoved. After awhile the physician pretended to recover consciousness. He arose, and turning to his master, inquired if he had not remarked the wrathful countenance of the devil.
De Retz replied that he had seen no devil. Whereupon the physician declared he had appeared in the fashion of a wild leopard, and had growled at him horribly. "You, " he said to his lord, " - would have been the same, and heard the same, but for your want of faith. You could not determine to give yourself up wholly to his service, and therefore he thrust a mist before your eyes." De Retz acknowledged that his resolution had somewhat faltered, but that now his choice was made, if indeed the Evil One could be coerced into speaking, and revealing the secret of the universal alkahest. The physician said that there grew certain herbs in Spain and Africa which possessed the necessary power, and offered to go in search of them himself if the Lord of Laval would supply the funds. As no one else would be able to detect the herbs so miraculously gifted, De Retz thanked the physician for his voluntary self denial, and loaded him with all the gold he could spare. The physician then took leave of his credulous patron, who never saw him again.
De Retz, as soon as the physician had quitted Champtoce, was once more seized with the fever of unrest. His days and nights were consumed in ceaseless visions of gold; gold, without which he must abandon his gilded pomp and unholy pleasures; gold, without which he could not hope to brave his enemies or procure exemption from the just punishment of his crimes. He now turned for help to the alchemist Prelati, who agreed to undertake the enterprise if De Retz furnished him with the charms and talismans necessary in so troublesome a work. He was to sign with his blood a contract that he would obey the devil in all things, and to offer up a sacrifice of the hands, eyes, blood, heart and lungs of a young child. The madman having willingly consented to these terms, Prelati went out alone on the following night, and after an absence of three hours, returned to his impatient lord. - His tale was a monstrously extravagant one, but De Relz swallowed, it greedily.
The devil had appeared in the shape of a comely young man of twenty, who desired to be called Barron, and had pointed out to him a store of ingots of pure gold, buried under an oak in the neighbouring wood, which was to become the property of the Lord of Laval if he fulfilled the conditions of his contract. But this bright prospect was overclouded by the devil's injunction that the gold was not to be searched for until a period of seven times seven weeks had elapsed, or it would turn to slates and dust. So Retz was by no means willing to wait so many months for the realisation of his wishes, and desired Prelati to intimate to the devil that he should decline any further correspondence with him if matters could not be expedited. Prelati persuaded him to wait for seven times seven days, and then, the two repaired with pickaxe and shovel to dig up the treasure.
After some hard work they lighted upon a load of slates inscribed with hieroglyphical characters. Prelati broke out into a fit of rage, and culminated the Evil One as a liar, a knave, a rogue - De Retz heartily joining in his fierce denunciations. He persuaded his master, however, to give the devil a further trial, and led him on from day to day with dark oracular hints and pretended demoniac intimations, until he had obtained nearly all the valuables remaining to his unhappy dupe. He was then preparing to escape with his plunder, when a catastrophe occurred, which involved him in his lord's ruin.
On Easter Day, in the year 1440, having communicated solemnly in his chapel, and bade farewell to the lady of Machecoul, telling her that he was departing to the Holy Land, the poor creature was even then afraid to question, so much did she tremble at his presence; she was also several months in her pregnancy. The Marshal permitted her sister to come on a visit as a companion during his absence. Madame de Raiz took advantage of this indulgence, after which Gilles de Laval mounted his horse, and departed. To her sister, Madame de Raiz communicated her fears and anxieties. What went on in the castle ? Why was her lord so gloomy ? What signified his repeated absences ? What became of the children who disappeared day by day ? What were those nocturnal lights in the walled - up tower ? These and the other problems excited the curiosity of both women to the utmost degree.
What, all the same, could be done ? The Marshal had forbidden them expressly even to approach the tower, and before leaving he had expressed this injunction. It must assuredly have a secret entrance, for which Madame de Raiz and her sister Anne proceeded to search through the lower rooms of the castle, corner by corner, stone after stone. At last, in the chapel, behind the altar, they came upon a copper button, hidden in a mass of sculpture. It yielded under pressure, a stone slid back, and the two curiosity - seekers, now all in a tremble, distinguished the lowermost steps of a staircase, which led them to the condemned tower.
At the top of the first flight there was a kind of chapel, with a cross upside down and black candles; on the altar stood a hideous figure, no doubt representing the demon. On the second floor, they came upon furnaces, retorts, alembics, charcoal - in a word, all the apparatus of alchemy, The third flight led to a dark chamber where the heavy and fetid atmosphere compelled the young women to retreat. Madame de Raiz came into collision with a vase, which fell over, and she was conscious that her robe and feet were soaked by some thick and unknown liquid. On returning to the light at the head of the stairs, she found that she was bathed in blood.
Sister Anne would have fled from the place, but in Madame de Raiz curiosity was even stronger than disgust or fear. She descended the stairs, took a lamp from the infernal chapel and returned to the third floor, where a frightful spectacle awaited her. Copper vessels filled with blood were ranged the whole len, th of the walls, bearing labels with a date on each, and in the middle of the room there was a black marble table, on which lay the body of a child, murdered quite recently. It was one of those basins which had fallen, and black blood had spread far and wide over the grimy and worm - eaten wooden floor. The two women were now half - dead with terror. Madame de Raiz endeavoured at all costs to efface the evidence of hcr indiscretion. She went in search of a sponge and water, to wash the boards, but she only extended the stain, and that which at first seemed black, became all scarlet in hue. Suddenly a loud commotion echoed through the castle, mixed with the cries of people calling to Madame de Raiz.
She distinguished the awe stricken words: " Here is Monseigneur come back." The two women made for the staircase, but at the same moment they were aware of the trampling of steps and the sound of other voices in the devil's chapel. Sister Anne fled upwards to the battlement of the tower; 'Madame de Raiz went down trembling, and found herself face to face with her husband, in the act of ascending, accompanied ~y the apostate priest and Prelati.
Gilles de I avol seized his wife by the arm, and without speaking, dragged her into the infernal chapel. It was then that Prelati observed to the Marshal: " It is needs must, as you see, and the victim has come of her own accord. . . . " " Be it so, " answered his master. " Begin the Black Mass . . . ... The apostate priest went to the altar, while Gilles de Laval opened a little cupboard fixed therein, and drew out a large knife, after which he sat down close to his spouse, who was now almost in a swoon, and lying in a heap on a bench against the wall. The sacrilegious ceremonies began. It must be explained that the Marshal, so far from taking the road to Jerusalem, had proceeded only to Nantes, where Prelati lived; he attacked this miserable wretch, with the uttermost fury, and threatened to slay him if be did not furnish the means of extracting from the devil that which he had been demanding for so long a time. With the object of obtaining delay, Prelati declared that terrible conditions were required by the infernal master, first among, which would be the sacrifice of the Marshal's unborn child, after tearing it forcibly from the mother's womb. Gilles de Laval made no reply, but returned at once to Machecoul, the Florentine sorcerer and his accomplice, the priest, being in his train. With the rest we are acquainted.
Meanwhile, Sister Anne, left to her own devices on the roof of the tower, and not daring to come down, had removed her veil, to make signs of distress at chance. They were answered by two cavaliers, accompanied by a posse of armed men, who were riding towards the castle; they proved to be her two brothers, who, on learning the spurious departure of the Marshal for Palestine, had come to visit and console Madame de Raiz. Soon after they arrived with a clatter in the court of the castle, whereupon Gilles de Laval suspended the hideous ceremony, and said to his wife: " Madame, I forgive you, and the matter is at an, end between us if you do now as I tell you. Return to your apartment, change your garments, and join me in the guest - room, whither I am going to receive your brothers. But if you say one word, or cause them the slightest suspicion, I will bring you hither on their departure; we shall proceed with the Black Mass at the point where it is now broken off, and at the consecration you will die. Mark where I place this knife."
He rose up and led his wife to the door of her chamber, and subsequently received her relations and their suite, saying that this lady was preparing herself to come and salute her brothers. Madame de Raiz appeared almost immediately, pale as a spectre. Gilles de T aval never took eyes off her, seeking to control her by his glance. When her brother suggested that she was ill, she answered that it was the fatigue of pregnancy, but added in an undertone: " Save me, he seeks to kill me." At the same moment, Sister Anne rushed into the hall, crying: " Take us away; save us, my brothers, this man is an assassin, " and she pointed to Gilles de Laval. While the Marshal summoned his people, the escort of the two visitors surrounded the women with drawn swords, and the Marshal's people disarmed instead of obeying him. Madame de Raiz, with her sister and brothers, gained the drawbridge, and left the castle.
Terrible rumours were now bruited through all the countryside. It was noticed that many young girls and boys had disappeared. Some had been traced to the Castle of Champtoce, and not beyond. The public voice accused him of murder; and of crimes even worse than murder - of lust in its foulest and most disgusting shapes. It was true that no one dared openly accuse a baron so powerful as the Lord of Retz. It was true that whenever the circumstances of the disappearance of so many children were alluded to in his presence, he always manifested the greatest astonishment. But the suspicions of the people once aroused are not easily allayed; and the Castle of Champtoce and its lord soon acquired a fearful reputation, and were surrounded with an appalling mystery.
The continued disappearance of young boys and girls had caused so bitter a feeling in the neighbourhood that the Church had felt constrained to intervene, and on the earnest representations of the Bishop of Nantes, the Duke of Brittany ordered De Retz and his accomplice to be arrested. Their trial took place before a commission composed of the Bishop of Nantes, Chancellor of Brittany, the Vicar of the Inquisition, and Pierre Harpital, the President of the Provincial Parliament. De Reiz was accused of sorcery, sodomy, and murder. At first he displayed the most consummate coolness, denounced his judges as worthless and impure, and declared that rather than plead before such shameless knaves he would be hung like a dog, without trial.
But the overwhelming evidence brought against him - the terrible revelations made by Prelati and his servants of his abandoned lust, of his sacrifices of young children for the supposed gratification of the devil, and the ferocious pleasure with which he gloated over the throbbing limbs and glazing eyes of those who were equally the victims of his sensuality and his cruelty - this horrible tale, as it unfolded day by day the black record of his enormities, shook even his imperturbable courage, and he confessed everything.
The bloodstained chronicle showed that nearly one hundred children had fallen victims to this madman and his insane greed of the Philosophers' Stone. Both De Retz and Prelati were doomed to be burned alive, but in consideration of his rank the punishment of the Marshal was somewhat mitigated. He was strangled before he was given over to the flames. On the scaffold, he exclaimed to Prelati, with a hideous assumption of religious confidence: " Farewell, friend Francis. In this world we shall never meet again, but let us rest our hopes in God - we shall see each other in Paradise." The sentence was executed at Nantes, on the 23rd of February, 1440.
" Notwithstanding his many and atrocious cruelties, " says the old chronicler, Monstrelet, "he made a very devout end, full of penitence, most humbly imploring his Creator to have mercy on his manifold sins and wickedness. When his body was partly burned, some ladies and damsels of his family requested his remains of the Duke of Brittany, that they might be interred in holy ground, which was granted. The greater part of the nobles of Brittany, more especially those of his kindred, were in the utmost grief and confusion at his shameful death."
The Castle of Champtoce still stands in its beautiful valley, and many a romantic legend flowers about its gray old walls. " The hideous, half - burnt body of the monster himself, " says Trollope, " circled in flames, pale, indeed, and faint in colour, but more lasting than those the hangman kindled around his mortal form in the meadow under the walls of Nantes - is seen on bright moonlight nights, standing now on one topmost point of craggy wall, now on another, and is heard mingling his moan with the sough of the night - wind. Pale, bloodless forms, too, of youthful growth and men, the restless, unsepulchred ghosts of the unfortunates who perished in these dungeons unassailed, may at similar times be seen flitting backwards and forwards in numerous groups across the space enclosed by the ruined walls, with more than mortal speed, or glancing hurriedly from window to window of the fabric, as still seeking to escape from its hateful confinement."
Girard, Jean - Baptiste: A Jesuit born at Pi1e in 1680, much persecuted by the Jansenists. They accused him of having seduced a girl named Catherine Cadisre, who showed symptoms of possession, and had to be sent to a convent of Ursulines at Brest. His enemies found it impossible to implicate him in the affair, and the parliament of Aix, before which he was tried, were forced to acquit him.
Glanyll, Joseph: (1636 - 1680) An English philosopher who wrote several works dealing with occult affairs, was born at Plymouth, and became a Church of England clergyman with charges at Frome Selwood and Street and Walton. In 1666 he was appointed to the Abbey Church, Bath, was made a prebendary of Worcester Cathedral, and was chaplain in ordinary to Charles II. from 1672. In his scepsis Scientifica (1665) his Sorcerers and Sorcery (1666) and his Saducismus Triumphatus (printed 1681) he undertook the defence of the belief in the supernatural, and supplied many illustrations in support of his theory.
Glamis Castle: Located just over five miles south of the town of Forfar in Angus and looking like a Grimm fairy-tale, Glamis Castle was originally a 14th century keep which has been extended extensively over the years. King Malcolm II is reputed to have died in the castle, though not in the room which is currently named after him. It is also reputed to be the place of the murder of King Duncan by MacBeth. Since Malcolm gained the throne for Duncan by slaughtering the heirs of Kenneth III, in general the place and the MacAlpin dynasty has a bloody history.
In the 15th century, the lands were held by Sir John Lyon, Chancellor of Scotland who married the daughter of King Robert II. The castle is still held by the Lyon family, now elevated to the Earls of Strathmore and Kinghorne. The 9th Earl became a Bowes Lyon when he married a Yorkshire heiress. The Duchess of York, the wife of Duke George, comes from this family.
The castle has the reputation of being the most haunted in Britain, including "Earl Beardie", the 4th Earl of Crawford who is said to have played cards with the Devil in a walled-up room. Visitors to the castle are given an escorted tour round many of the sumptuous apartments, including the dining room (lined with portraits of the Strathmores), the crypt, the magnificent drawing room, the private chapel with painted ceiling and the sitting room used by the Queen Mother. Unfortunately, as in so many such buildings (Scone Palace is an honourable exception) no photography is allowed in the private apartments.
The story is told of a gentleman staying overnight at Glamis who awoke to see a knightly suit of armor standing over him. With a skeletal face staring down.
Another account speaks of finding a hidden room where some half man half monster idiot rolled and mewled in the beams of sunlight, but all vanished when the room was entered.
Most accounts of Glamis suggest a hidden room. An anecdotal story tells that the Duchess during her childhood and some of the other ladies tried to find the secret room when the men were away one day around the turn of the century, by hanging strips of cloth from every room in the castle. One window did not sport a strip of cloth, but before it could be explored further, the men returned, and the Earl was disproportionately angry about the incident.
Glas Chairm: A rhyme or spell of Scottish origin, by the use of which one could keep a dog from barking, and open a lock, and supposed to be of special value to young men in their courtship days. About twenty years ago a well known character in Skye, named Archibald the Lightheaded, was believed to know this incantation; but he repeated it so quickly that no one could understand what he said. This poor man was insane; but the fear which dogs had of him was ascribed to his knowledge of the GlasGhaiym. It was believed that this rhyme had some reference to the safety of the Children of Israel on the night before the Exodus: " against any of the children of Israel shall not a dog move his tongue, against man or beast."
Glauber, Johann Rudolph: German mediciner and alchemist, born at Carlstadt, in 1603. No authentic records concerning his life appear to exist, although he was a profuse writer and left many treatises on medicine and alchemy. He discovered and prepared many medicines of great value to pharmacy, some of which are in common use, for example the familiar preparation known as Glauber's Salts. He was a firm believer in the Philosophers' Stone and elixir vitae. Concerning the former, he states: " Let the benevolent reader take with him my final judgment concerning the great Stone of the Wise; let every man believe what he will and is able to comprehend. Such a work is purely the gift of God, and cannot be learned by the most acute power of human mind, if it be not assisted by the benign help of a Divine Inspiration. And of this I assure myself that in the last times, God will raise up some to whom He will open the Cabinet of Nature's Secrets, that they shall be able to do wonderful things in the world to His Glory, the which, I indeed, heartily wish to posterity that they may enjoy and use to the praise and honour of God."
Some of Glaubey's principal works are, Philosophical Furnaces, Commentary on Paracelsus, Heaven of the Philosophers, or Book of Vexation, Miraculum Mundi, The Prosperity of Germany, Book of Fires.
Gloucester, Eleanor Cobham, Duchess of: