T.Ill.Sov.: Sir Knights Cousins,
assist me to open this Council of the Red Cross of Babylon.
Sir Knight Captain of the Guard, what is the first care of a Knight of the Red Cross of Babylon?
Captain of Guard: To see that the Council Chamber is duly guarded within and without, Thrice Illustrious Sovereign.
T.Ill.Sov.: You will see that that duty is performed.
Captain of Guard knocks on door ***** **, answered by Sentinel.
Captain of Guard, gives no Sign: Thrice Illustrious Sovereign, the Council Chamber is duly guarded.
T.Ill.Sov.: Sir Knight Master of Cavalry, are all present Knights of the Red Cross of
Master of Cavalry: Sir Knights , you will shew the 1st Sign of this Degree.
Master of Cavalry answers with 2nd Sign.
Master of Cavalry, gives 1st Sign: They are all true Knights of our Order, O Great and Mighty King.
T.Ill.Sov.: Let us pray.
May the Sovereign Master of All encourage and animate all true Knights, and dismay and confound all their enemies.
All: So mote it be.
T.Ill.Sov.: I declare this Council duly opened in the name of the Mighty Darius.
Knocks ***** **, repeated by Captain of the Guard and Sentinel.
Director of Ceremonies opens Volume of Sacred Law on pedestal at Ezra, chap 3.
T.Ill.Sov. and Officers of the Persian Court leave their places, and take seats elsewhere in the Lodge Room.
The Central Pedestal, with Volume of Sacred Law and two swords, is placed in position.
Rev. Prel. and Officers of the Royal Arch Council put on robes and take their places.
Ceremony of Reception
The Royal Arch Council
Guide conducts Candidate to door. Sentinel
knocks * * * *.
Captain of the Guard: Reverend Prelate, there is an alarm at the portal of the Council Chamber.
Prel.: Attend to the alarm and see who comes.
Captain of the Guard, opens door: Who comes here?
Jew.Guide: A worthy Companion, who has been regularly initiated, passed and raised in
the Craft, advanced in the Mark, and exalted in the Holy Royal Arch, now solicits the honour of being dubbed and created a Knight of the Illustrious Order of the Red Cross of Babylon.
Captain of the Guard: Is it of his own free will?
Guide: It is.
Captain of the Guard: By what does he hope to gain admittance?
Guide: By the benefit of a Pass, which is to prove himself to be a Companion of the Holy Royal Arch.
Captain of the Guard: Let him communicate that proof to me.
Candidate, prompted by Guide, shews the Rev. Sign. and give first Word of H R.A.
Captain of the Guard: Let the Candidate wait while I make report to the Reverend Prelate.
Captain of the Guard closes door.
Captain of the Guard, with Sign of Fidelity: Reverend Prelate, a worthy Companion, who has been regularly initiated, passed and raised in the Craft, advanced in the Mark, and exalted in the Holy Royal Arch, now solicits the honour of being dubbed and created a Knight of the Illustrious Order of the Red Cross of Babylon.
Prel.: Is it of his own free will?
Captain of the Guard: It is.
Prel.: By what does he hope to gain admittance?
Captain of the Guard: By the benefit of a Pass, which is to prove himself to be a Companion of the Holy Royal Arch.
Prel.: Communicate that proof to me.
Captain of the Guard shews Rev. Sign and give first Word of H.R.A.
Prel: Let him enter.
Captain of the Guard opens door; Guide leads Candidate into Council: they halt in front of two chairs located in the West, with Candidate on left of Guide; both face Prelate, bow, and sit.
Prel.: Companion …, the Council which you see here assembled represents the Grand Sanhedrim held at Jerusalem in the first year of the reign of Darius, King of Persia, to deliberate on their unhappy situation, and to devise means whereby they could obtain the favour and assistance of their new Sovereign in rebuilding the House of the Lord. If you are desirous of joining us in our deliberations, you must assume the name and character of Zerubbabel, one of the Princes of the House of Judah, whose ancestors laid the foundations of the first Temple, and whose hands the Lord promised should finish it.
Prompted by Guide, Candidate signifies his assent by rising and bowing. He resumes his seat.
Prel.: Companions, we will attend to the records of our forefathers.
Chaplain rises and reads Ezra, chap. 3, vv. 8-11; chap. 4, vv. 1-5; and chap. 5, vv. 1-3.
Ezra, chap. 3: Now in the second year of their coming unto the house of God at Jerusalem, in the second month, began Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Jeshua the son of Jozadak, and the remnant of their brethren the priests and the Levites, and all they that were come out of the captivity unto Jerusalem; and appointed the Levites, from twenty years old and upwards, to set forward the work of the house of the Lord.
Then stood Jeshua with his sons and his brethren, Kadmiel and his sons, the sons of Judah, together, to set forward the workmen in the house of God the sons of Henadad, with their sons and their brethren the Levites.
And when the builders laid the foundation of the temple of the Lord, they set the priests in their apparel with trumpets, and the Levites the sons of Asaph with cymbals, to praise the Lord, after the ordinance of David king of Israel.
And they sang together by course in praising and giving thanks unto the Lord, because he is good, for his mercy endureth for ever toward Israel. And all the people shouted with a great shout, when they praised the Lord, because the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid.
Now when the adversaries of Judah and Benjamin heard that the children of the captivity builded the temple unto the Lord God of Israel;
Then they came to Zerubbabel, and to the chief of the fathers. and said unto them, Let us build with you for we seek your God, as ye do; and we do sacrifice unto him since the days of Esar-haddon king of Assur, which brought us up hither.
But Zerubbabcl, and Jeshua, and the rest of the chief of the fathers of Israel, said unto them, Ye have nothing to do with us to build an house unto our God, but we ourselves together will build unto the Lord God of Israel, as king Cyrus the king of Persia hath commanded us.
Then the people of the land weakened the hands of the people of Judah, and troubled them in building,
And hired counselors against them, to frustrate their purpose, all the days of Cyrus king of Persia, even until the reign of Darius king of Persia.
Then the prophets, Haggai the prophet, and Zechariah the son of Iddo, prophesied unto the Jews that were in Judah and Jerusalem in the name of the God of Israel, even unto them.
Then rose up Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Jeshua the son of Jozadak, and began to build the house of God which is at Jerusalem; and with them were the prophets of God helping them.
At the same time came to them Tarnai, governor on this side the flyer, and Sherharboznai, and their companions, and said thus unto them, Who hath commanded you to build this house, and to make up this wall?
Chaplain resumes his seat; Guide and Candidate rise.
Guide: Reverend Prelate, on the accession of Darius the King to the Throne of Persia, we were inspired with new hopes that we should at last succeed in the glorious work of rebuilding the Temple of the Lord. Nevertheless we have often been interrupted by our adversaries under their Persian Governor, Tatnai. We recall that Darius, when in humble station, made a vow that, should he ever ascend the throne of Persia, he would send back to Jerusalem the sacred vessels of the Sanctuary. Moreover, our Companion
Zerubbabel, who was formerly well known to the King, now offers his services to undertake the hazardous enterprise of traversing the Persian dominions, and seeking admission to the presence of our Sovereign. He will then seize the first favourable opportunity to remind the King of his vow. We doubt not that his consent will thus be obtained for the completion of the glorious undertaking in which we are so laudably engaged.
Prel.: Companion Zerubbabel, the Council has much pleasure in accepting your generous offer. We will entrust you with the necessary passports, by means of which
you will be able to make yourself known to our friends. However, it is necessary that you should take a solemn Obligation to be faithful to the trust reposed in you.
Prelate gives one knock; all rise; Guide leads Candidate to central pedestal. Prelate
leaves his chair and advances to pedestal.
Prel.: Kneel on your left knee.
Candidate complies. Director of Ceremonies proffers cushion with sword thereon to Prelate.
Prel.: Hold this sword upright in your right hand.
Prelate hands sword to Candidate who holds it by the hilt, point uppermost.
Place your left hand on the Volume of Sacred Law.
Prel.: State your names at length and say after me:
I, …, of my own free will and accord, in the presence of these witnesses, do hereby and hereon most solemnly swear that I will always conceal, and never improperly reveal, any of the secrets or mysteries appertaining to the Illustrious Order of the Red Cross of Babylon, unless it be to a true and faithful Knight of that Order, or in the body of a just and lawful Council.
I further promise and swear due allegiance to the Grand Council of the Order of the Allied Masonic Degrees and to the Grand Master for the time being, and I promise not to be present at, nor to consent to, the admission into this Order of anyone who has not previously received the Degrees of Mark Master Mason and Holy Royal Arch Mason.
So help me the Great Disposer of All and keep me steadfast in this my solemn Obligation of a Knight of the Red Cross of Babylon.
As a pledge of your fidelity, you will salute the Volume of Sacred Law once.
Prelate takes Candidates left hand in both his hands: Rise, Zerubbabel.
Prelate returns to his place and sits.
Director of Ceremonies: Be seated, Companions.
Guide draws his sword; he leads Candidate, both with swords at carry, in front of Reverend Prelate. Candidate on left of Guide.
Prel.: The Ancient Penalty, formerly used in this Degree, was that of being sawn asunder diagonally and when the last trump shall sound of being excluded from the society of all true and faithful Knights.
Companion Zerubbabel, the Guide will now entrust you with the Jewish Pass, which will ensure you the protection and assistance of the friends of our cause.
Guide and Candidate both face inwards; Guide demonstrates Jewish Pass: three cuts with the sword, below - above - below.
Guide and Candidate repeat Jewish Pass together, then both return swords to the carry.
Guide: The Words are given under an Arch of Steel, which is formed thus.
An Arch of Steel above the heads is formed by two companions facing each other with swords at the carry, each inclines his sword towards his left shoulder at an angle of 45° across his body, each then raises and advances his sword to meet the sword of the companion opposite above their heads.
Guide and Candidate form an Arch of Steel above their heads.
Guide: The Words are Judah and Benjamin, which are exchanged alternately.
On completion Guide and Candidate bring swords to carry and turn to face East.
Reverend Prelate moves out in front of his pedestal; Director of Ceremonies presents to him cushion bearing Green Sash.
Prelate invests Candidate with Sash, under left arm and over right shoulder, as a sword sash.
Prel.: I now invest you with this Sash as a mark of our peculiar friendship and esteem. Its colour is green, and will remind you that the memory of him who falls in a just and virtuous cause is blessed, and will flourish like the green bay tree.
Reverend Prelate returns to his place and sits.
Prel.: Fare you well, Companion Zerubbabel. May success attend your enterprise.
Guide: Follow me.
Guide and Candidate turn to the South and march out of the Temple, both with swords at carry.
Reverend Prelate and other Officers of the Royal Arch Council leave their places, remove their robes, and take seats elsewhere in the Lodge Room. Director of Ceremonies leaves Lodge Room to supervise Part II.
During the time that Part II is being enacted outside the Lodge Room, the Throne Room of the Persian Court is prepared.
Central pedestal, Volume of Sacred Law and two swords are removed.
Volume of Sacred Law on pedestal in East remains open at Ezra, chap. 3.
Thrice Illustrious Sovereign and the Officers of the Persian Court take their places.
Crossing the Bridge
This important part of the Ceremony takes place
in an ante-room or corridor outside the Lodge Room.
A practicable bridge should be arranged, over which the Candidate must pass.
Two Jewish Guards are stationed a short distance apart on the Jewish side of the Bridge, the one nearer to the Bridge than the other. Two Persian Guards are stationed on the Persian side of the Bridge.
If numbers are short, one Jewish Guard will suffice.
Guide: We shall shortly reach the bank of the Great River, which forms part of the frontier between the rest of the Persian dominions and the Jewish territory "Beyond - River", over which the Persian Satrap or Governor Tatnai rules, assisted by his Deputy Shetharboznai.
Candidate, accompanied by Guide, approaches Bridge, and is challenged by 1st Jewish Guard.
1st Jewish Guard: Who comes here?
Guide: Zerubbabel, a friend.
1st Jewish Guard: Advance, friend, and give the Pass.
Candidate advances and, prompted by Guide, he and 1st Jewish Guard exchange the Jewish Pass.
1st Jewish Guard: Pass, Zerubbabel.
If there is a second Jewish Guard, the challenge will be repeated closer to the Bridge.
Guide: Companion Zerubbabel, we have now arrived at the bank of the Great River. I can therefore accompany you no further: you must cross the Bridge alone. Fare you well, and may success attend your enterprise.
Guide retires. Candidate crosses the Bridge alone. When he steps off the Bridge on the Persian side, he is challenged by 1st Persian Guard. Master of Infantry is waiting close by, and thereafter acts as Conductor and answers for Candidate, who does not repeat answers.
1st Persian Guard: Who comes here?
Master of Infantry: A friend.
1st Persian Guard: Advance and give the Pass.
Candidate, prompted by Master of Infantry, if necessary, gives Jewish Pass by himself.
1st Persian Guard: An enemy! Seize him!
1st and 2nd Persian Guards seize Candidate, and remove his sword.
Master of Infantry: Why do you use this violence? I am not an enemy, but a Prince of the House of Judah. I therefore demand an audience with your King.
1st Persian Guard: You are my slave. You can only appear before our Sovereign as such. Do you consent?
Master of Infantry: I consent. Take me before him at once.
Persian Guards then remove Green Sash from Candidate, and put chains on his wrists; they then hold him and await cue from Director of Ceremonies for entry into the Throne Room.
The Throne Room of the Persian Court
Director of Ceremonies enters Throne Room without
report, bringing with him the sword and Green Sash removed from Candidate,
which are placed on cushion for use later.
When all is ready, Director of Ceremonies obtains approval from Thrice Illustrious Sovereign; he opens door and instructs Persian Guards to carry on.
Sentinel gives alarm on door: ***** **.
Captain of Guard rises, draws his sword, goes to door and opens it.
Captain of the Guard: Who comes here?
Sentinel: A detachment of His Majesty’s Guards, who have made prisoner an enemy who says that he is a Prince of Judah.
Captain of the Guard: Whence comes he?
Sentinel: From Jerusalem.
Captain of the Guard: What is his name?
Sentinel: Zerubbabel, who claims to be the first among his equals, free by birth, but a slave and a captive by misfortune.
Captain of the Guard: What does he desire?
Sentinel: An audience with His Majesty.
Captain of the Guard: Wait with patience. The Sovereign Master will soon make known his orders. Captain of Guard closes door.
Captain of the Guard, with sword at carry: Thrice Illustrious Sovereign, a detachment of Your Majesty’s Guards, who have made a prisoner one who says that he is a Prince of Judah.
T.Ill.Sov.: Having ascertained that he is not armed with any hostile weapon, Sir Knight Captain of Guard, he may enter.
Captain of Guard goes to door and opens it.
Candidate is led in under escort; Sentinel closes door.
Procession halts in centre of Throne Room, facing East. Captain of Guard moves and stands to the South of the Escort.
T.Ill.Sov.: Sir Knight Captain of Guard, this is no enemy; this is a friend and companion of my youth. Zerubbabel, having now gained admission into our presence, we demand that you declare immediately the particular motives which induced you, without our permission and with force of arms, to endeavour to pass the lines of our dominions.
Master of Infantry: Great and Mighty King, our late King, Cyrus the Great, gave to my Companions of Jerusalem permission to rebuild the House of the Lord.
Our enemies, by force and power, have lately caused that great and glorious work to cease. I have therefore come to implore Your Majesty’s clemency to restore me to favour, and to grant me employment among the servants of your household.
T.Ill.Sov.: Zerubbabel, I have often reflected with much pleasure upon our early intimacy and friendship. I have frequently heard, with great satisfaction, of your fame as a wise and accomplished Mason. I have myself a profound veneration for that ancient and honourable Institution, and a sincere desire to become a member of it. I will this very moment grant your request, on condition that you reveal to me the secrets of Masonry, which distinguish the architects of the Jews from those of all other nations.
Master of Infantry: Thrice Illustrious Sovereign, when our Grand Master, Solomon, King of Israel, first instituted the fraternity of Free and Accepted Masons, he taught us that Truth was a divine attribute and the foundation of every Virtue: the very first lesson which we learn in Masonry is to be good men and true.
If I can only obtain Your Majesty’s favour at the expense of my sacred and inviolable engagements, then I humbly beg leave to decline your protection, and I will cheerfully submit to exile or to a glorious death.
T.Ill.Sov.: Zerubbabel, your virtue and integrity are truly commendable, and your fidelity is worthy of all praise. From this moment you are free. Guards, strike off those chains.
Persian Guards remove chains from Candidate and resume positions.
T.Ill.Sov.: May those emblems of slavery never again disgrace the hands of a Mason, more particularly a Prince of the House of Judah. Zerubbabel, we assign to you a seat of rank and honour among the princes and rulers of our assembly.
Captain of Guard conducts Candidate, followed by Master of Infantry, to seats in the North-East, where they sit, Master of Infantry on right of Candidate. Captain of Guard and Persian Guards return to their places in the West; they return swords and sit.
T.Ill.Sov.: It has been the custom from time immemorial among the Kings and Sovereigns of this realm, on special occasions, to propose certain questions for discussion. He who was found to give the most satisfactory answer would be clothed in purple, drink from a golden cup, and have a golden chain placed about his neck. A question has occurred to me which I will propose for discussion: "Which is the greatest, the strength of Wine, of the King, or of Women?"
Master of the Household, rises and gives 1st Sign: Thrice Illustrious Sovereign, I think that Wine is the strongest. Resumes his seat.
Master of Cavalry, rises and gives 1st Sign: Thrice Illustrious Sovereign, I think that the King is the strongest. Resumes his seat.
Master of Infantry, rises and gives 1st Sign: Thrice Illustrious Sovereign, I think that Women are the strongest but above all things Truth beareth the victory. Resumes his seat.
T.Ill.Sov.: Companion Zerubbabel, you have made a very important addition to the question which needs further consideration. We will hear the question debated.
Illustrious Knights, will you defend your opinions.
Illustrious Master of the Household, will you speak first.
Master of Household rises and gives 1st Sign: O ye princes and rulers, how exceeding strong is Wine! It causeth all men to err that drink it, it maketh the mind of the King and of the beggar to be all one, of the bondman and of the freeman, of the poor man and of the rich it turneth also every thought into jollity and mirth, so that a man remembereth neither sorrow nor debt it changeth and elevateth the spirits, and enliveneth the heavy hearts of the miserable. It maketh a man to forget his brethren, and to draw his sword against his best friends. O ye princes and rulers, is not Wine the strongest that forceth us to do these things? Gives 1st Sign and resumes seat.
T.Ill.Sov.: Illustrious Master of the Household, your statement is a wise and weighty one, and shall receive due consideration. Illustrious Master of Cavalry will you speak next.
Master of Cavalry rises and gives 1st Sign: It is beyond dispute, O princes and rulers, that God has made man master of all things under the sun, to command them, to make use of them, and to apply them to his service as he pleases. But whereas men have dominion only over other sublunary creatures, Kings have authority even over men themselves, and a right of ruling them by will and pleasure. Now he that is master of those, who are masters of all things else, hath no earthly things above him. Gives 1st Sign and resumes seat.
T.Ill.Sov.: What you have said, Illustrious Master of Cavalry, is of great importance, and is well calculated to support the dignity and authority of the Throne. Now Companion Zerubbabel, will you defend your opinion.
Master of Infantry rises and gives 1st Sign: O princes and rulers, the force of Wine is not to be denied; neither is that of Kings, which unites so many men in one common allegiance.
However, Women are superior to both.
Kings are but the gifts of Women, who are also the mothers of those who cultivate our vineyards. Women have the power to make us abandon our very country and relations, to forget the best friends we have in the world, and forsaking all other comforts to live and die with them. But when all is said, neither Women, nor Wine, nor Kings, are comparable with the almighty force of Truth. As for all other things, they are mortal and transient Truth alone endureth and is always strong it liveth and conquereth for evermore; the benefits which we receive from her are subject to no variations or vicissitudes of time and fortune. In her judgment there is no unrighteousness, she is the wisdom, strength, beauty, power and majesty of all ages. Blessed be the God of Truth.
Gives 1st Sign and resumes seat.
T.Ill.Sov., rises and stretches forth his sceptre in the direction of Candidate: Great is Truth, and mighty above all things Zerubbabel, ask what thou wilt, and I will give it thee, because thou art found the wisest among thy companions, and thou shalt eat next to me and shalt be called my cousin. Resumes his seat.
Master of Infantry, rises and gives 1st Sign: O King, remember thy vow which thou hast vowed, to build Jerusalem in the day when thou shouldest come to thy kingdom, and to restore the holy vessels which were taken away out of Jerusalem. Thou hast also vowed to build up the Temple which was burned, when Judah was made desolate by the Chaldecs. And now, O King, this is that which I desire of thee, that thou make good thy vow, the performance whereof with thine own mouth thou hast vowed to the King of Heaven. Gives 1st Sign and resumes seat.
T.Ill.Sov.: Zerubbabel, it shall be done. I will punctually fulfill my vow.
Letters and passports shall immediately be issued to my officers throughout the realm; they shall give to you and to those who accompany you safe conveyance to Jerusalem. Henceforth you shall no longer be hindered or impeded in rebuilding your city and Temple. Approach and receive your reward.
Director of Ceremonies places kneeling stool in centre of East end of Throne Room. Master of Infantry leads Candidate to West side of kneeling stool, where he stands, with Master of Infantry behind him. Director of Ceremonies brings forward sword belt and frog, which he fastens round waist of Candidate. Director of Ceremonies also places scabbard in frog.
Thrice Illustrious Sovereign leaves sceptre on Throne, and advances to East side of stool.
Captain of Guard approaches from West, bearing cushion on which are Green Sash and Sword: he presents cushion to Thrice Illustrious Sovereign, who takes Green Sash. Captain of Guard steps back out of the way.
T.Ill.Sov.: Zerubbabel, this Green Sash, of which you were deprived by my guards, I now with pleasure restore to you, and will make it one of the insignia of a new Order calculated to perpetuate the remembrance of the event which led to the renewal of our friendship.
Thrice Illustrious Sovereign invests Candidate with Sash, under the right arm and over the left shoulder, as for a Royal Arch Sash.
Its green colour will remind you that Truth is a Divine Attribute and shall prevail and forever flourish in eternal spring.
I will now confer on you the highest honour which is in my power at this time to bestow I will create you a Knight of the new Order, the Illustrious Order of the Red Cross of Babylon, which I now institute for the express purpose of inculcating the almighty force and supreme importance of Truth.
Captain of Guard steps forward and presents cushion to Thrice Illustrious Sovereign, from which he takes Sword. Captain of Guard returns to his place in the West.
Master of Infantry instructs Candidate to kneel on kneeling stool.
Director of Ceremonies: Sir Knights, to order.
T.Ill.Sov.: By virtue of the power vested in me, as the successor and representative of Darius, King of Persia, I now constitute and create you a Knight of the Illustrious Order of the Red Cross of Babylon.
As Thrice Illustrious Sovereign says the following words, he lays blade of sword lightly first on right shoulder of Candidate, then on left shoulder and finally on head.
T.Ill.Sov.: Be Loyal - Brave - and True.
Thrice Illustrious Sovereign transfers sword to left hand and with right hand takes right hand of Candidate with Fellow Craft’s grip and raises him.
T.Ill.Sov.: Arise, Sir Knight.
Director of Ceremonies removes kneeling stool.
Director of Ceremonies: Sir Knights, be seated.
Thrice Illustrious Sovereign holds sword horizontal in both hands, while he addresses Candidate: In the hands of a true and courteous knight, the sword is endowed with three most excellent qualities its hilt with faith, its blade with hope, and its point with charity. This teaches us an important lesson, that when we draw our swords in a just and virtuous cause, having faith in God, we may reasonably hope for victory, and we should ever remember to extend the point of charity to a fallen foe.
Sir Knight, I now with pleasure restore to you this sword, of which you were deprived by my guards.
Thrice Illustrious Sovereign paces hilt in Candidate's right hand, blade vertical.
T.Ill.Sov.: I will now entrust you with the secrets of our Order.
Director of Ceremonies draws sword and presents it to Thrice Illustrious Sovereign.
You have already been entrusted with the Jewish Pass. The Persian Pass is also given with three cuts of the sword, but in this case they are given Over - Under - Over.
Thrice Illustrious Sovereign and Candidate repeat Persian Pass together and return swords to the carry.
T.Ill.Sov.: The Words are given under an Arch of Steel formed above the heads, as before, and with the left hand placed on the other Knight’s right shoulder.
The Words are Tatnai and Shetharboznai, which are exchanged alternately.
Thrice Illustrious Sovereign and Candidate return swords to the carry.
T.Ill.Sov.: Tatnai was the Satrap or Governor of the Province of ‘Beyond-River’, or the territory on the Jewish side of the frontier river, and Shetharboznai was his Deputy.
T.Ill.Sov. puts his sword in his left hand and tells Candidate to do likewise.
T.Ill.Sov.: The 1st Sign of this Degree is given by drawing the thumb of the right hand diagonally across the body from left shoulder to right hip, following the line of the Green Sash.
The reply is to give the 2nd Sign of this Degree, the Sign of a Master Mason, given zig-zag, with no recovery.
The 1st Sign alludes to the Ancient Penalty, formerly used in this Degree, namely that of being sawn asunder diagonally.
The Word of the Red Cross of Babylon is Veritas, meaning Truth.
Thrice Illustrious Sovereign and Candidate return swords to right hands.
T.Ill.Sov.: The Grand Sign and Grand Words are given over an Arch of Steel at waist level, which is formed thus.
An Arch of Steel at waist level is formed by two Knights facing each other with swords at the carry; each inclines his sword towards his left shoulder at an angle of 45° across his body; each then lowers and advances his sword to meet the sword of the Knight opposite at waist level.
Thrice Illustrious Sovereign and Candidate form an Arch of Steel at waist level.
The Grand Sign is given by bringing the thumb and forefinger of the left hand to the mouth, and carrying them off in an oblique direction, as if blowing a trumpet.
The Word is ‘Libertas’, meaning ‘Liberty’.
The Grand Words are ‘Magna est Veritas, et Praevelabit’, meaning ‘Great is Truth, and it will prevail’.
Thrice Illustrious Sovereign and Candidate bring swords to carry.
T.Ill.Sov.: Return your sword, Sir Knight. Candidate returns sword to scabbard.
There let it remain until it is consumed by rust, rather than draw it in the cause of injustice or oppression.
Thrice Illustrious Sovereign hands sword back to Director of Ceremonies, who returns it to its scabbard.
Captain of the Guard approaches with Cushion, on which is the Jewel, which he proffers to Thrice Illustrious Sovereign.
T.Ill.Sov.: I invest you with this Jewel of the Order.
This concludes the Ceremony of Reception of a Knight of the Red Cross of Babylon, and you may now take your seat in this Court.
Thrice Illustrious Sovereign congratulates Candidate and then returns to hits Throne and sits.
Master of Infantry conducts Candidate to seat in North and both sit. Director of Ceremonies and Captain of Guard return to their respective places and sit.
T.Ill.Sov.: Sir Knights Cousins,
assist me to close the Council.
Sir Knight Captain of Guard, you will see that the Council Chamber is duly guarded.
Captain of the Guard knocks ***** **, answered by Sentinel.
Captain of the Guard, with 1st Sign: Thrice Illustrious Sovereign, the Council Chamber is duly guarded.
T.Ill.Sov.: Sir Knight Master of Infantry, what have our Companions at Jerusalem been doing?
Master of Infantry, with 1st Sign: Thrice Illustrious Sovereign, they have been rebuilding the Holy Temple.
T.Ill.Sov.: What hour is it?
Master of Infantry: The hour of its completion.
T.Ill.Sov.: Sir Knights Cousins, since our Companions at Jerusalem have been so fortunate as to rebuild the Temple of the Lord in all its splendour, let us preserve the remembrance of that great event in our memory, and the Secrets of our Order by our silence. It is time to repose.
Thrice Illustrious Sovereign knocks ***** **, repeated by Captain of the Guard and Sentinel.
T.Ill.Sov.: The Council is closed.
Director of Ceremonies closes Volume of Sacred Law on pedestal.