Be humble and modest, trusting in God.
Be steadfast and courageous in the face of adversity.
Do you keep the ideal of justice before your own
Masked brothers, full moon, sword of a knight.
"Noachite, or Prussian Knight"
~ Summary ~
The principle lesson of this degree is to not be conceited
or belittle others. Nobody should rely on his wealth,
nobility, heavenly or worldly titles. We should be
humble and modest and sincerely seek God's
mercy; for God protects those who are sincere and
honest. A Mason should never lose hope and
confidence in the fact that correctness and honesty
will always be victorious.
The jewel is a silver, full moon, suspended from the third buttonhole of the vest, or a golden triangle traversed by an arrow, point-upward, suspended from the collar. On the jewel is an arm upraised, holding a naked sword, and around it the motto, Fiat Justitia, Ruat Coelum, meaning 'Let there be Justice, though the Heavens fall'. These were the words of William Murray, First Earl of Mansfield (1704-1793), Lord Chief Justice of England, uttered in the case of Rex vs. Wilkes, June 8, 1768.
The order is a broad black
ribbon, worn from right to left.
"This degree was originally known as Grand Noachite Patriarch in the Rite of Perfection, formed by the Council of Emperors of the East and West in France about 1758. Prior to Pike's reworking, it was the object of much controversy. It abandons the Hiramic legend and the building of Solomon's Temple entirely and, in its earlier workings, was founded operatively on the building of the Tower of Babel."
"Recognizing this incongruity, Pike based his ritual on a remarkable German judicial institution of the Middle Ages known as the Vehmgericht, or secret tribunal. He may have chosen this institution for several reasons. Pike was a noted and self-taught lawyer who practiced both in Arkansas and New Orleans. Thus he had more than a casual interest in the history of law and jurisprudence. Secondly, since this secret tribunal developed in the Middle Ages when knighthood and chivalry flowered, it is more in line chronologically with other Council degrees than the version which based its ceremony on the Noachites (descendants of Noah) and the story of the Tower of Babel. Only a hint of this remains in the present ritual-- the recitation to remember the fate of Phaleg, called in the King James Bible 'Peleg.' Phaleg, along with many other descendants of Noah, began to build a tower whose top may reach into heaven, the Tower of Babel. For this effrontery to God, their speech was confounded and they were scattered over the whole earth (Genesis 11). In the current version of the degree the parallel to the moral lesson of this story is found in the fate of one who acts boldly and with conceit and does not live within God's will." (A Bridge To Light, pp. 178-179)
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Ill. David A. Yarborough, 33°, General Secretary
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This Website was last updated on November 23, 2012