Holy Royal Arch Knight Templar Priests
Knight of the Suspended Cross of Babylon


Compiler's Notes: This ceremony is held in a Council of the Order. The degree was originally worked under the name of The Suspending Cross of Babylon and later as the Degree of Prince of Babylon. Once again it would appear that the old name was resurrected and amended and the chivalric appendage added to the name of the ceremony. Traditionally, it is claimed that this ritual existed circa 1725 but this is unlikely since one of the old qualifications for candidature was the Royal Arch, a degree which only saw widespread acceptance some 50 years later.
The Officers of the Council are the Most Illustrious Knight & Prince, the Very Illustrious Knight & Prince, and the Illustrious Knight & Reverend Prelate, and Illustrious Knights and Princes Recorder, Captain of Guards, Conductor, Herald, Almoner, Guard and Sentinel. The regalia is a sash of green on which are embroidered two interlocking equilateral triangles in gold, the uppermost containing the letters, S M A and the lower, the letters M M T U. The President carries a sceptre and the VIKVP, carries a baton.
Since the Candidates are required to give the word of the RA in proper form, these must be three candidates, where less than this number are available, members must assist to make up the three.



Knights and Princes of Babylon, assist me to open this Council. All stand.
Brother Knight & Prince Guard, do you confirm that our Council is closed to the outer world and is properly guarded.
Guard opens the door and ascertains that the Sentinel is in his correct place. Seeing that this is so, he closes the door and replies:
Most Illustrious Knight and Prince, the Sentinel is in bis proper place and guards against all intruders.
Brother Knight and Prince Captain of the Guard, are you satisfied that all present are Knights and Princes of Babylon?
I am, Most Illustrious Knight and Prince.
Very Illustrious Knight and Prince, how do we prove ourselves as Knights and Princes?
By meeting together and demonstrating the sign.
Knights and Princes, it is my will and pleasure to open this Council, to Order with the Sign. All do so.
The Sign being universally correct, I declare this Council of Knights and Princes of Babylon duly, legally and properly opened. Gives ** with sceptre, followed by VIK&P who does the same with baton, Guard and Sentinel. After which all drop the sign and take up their seats.
The Council being opened let the cross be suspended in its place. A cross of green is hung behind the chair of the MIK&P at a height where all can see it.
Brother Knight and Prince Recorder, you will deciare our order of business.
There is naught MIK&P, except that I have been given a note to advise me that three strangers stand at the door and seek our permission to enter.
Brother Knight & Prince Conductor, you will enquire from these strangers as to their purpose in seeking admission into this Council.
The Conductor signs and withdraws. if the requisite three requires to be made up then the members detailed to do so also retire at this time. The Conductor ensures that the Candidates wear the apron of a MM plus the sash of an RA Mason. All being correct he then raps on the door **.
Brother Knight and Prince Captain of the Guard, an alarm is sounded.
Most Illustrious Knight and Prince, an alarm is sounded, do I have your permission to determine its cause?
You may do so.
Brother Knight & Prince Guard, you will see why the Sentinel sounds the alarm.
Guard opens the door and looks outward, closes the door again and reports to the CoG.
Brother Knight & Prince Captain of the Guard, The Conductor and Three Strangers stand without.
The CoG leaves his post, draws the curtain behind him and approaches the door, which he opens fully, and demands:
Who comes here and disturbs our Council?
Three True and Worthy Masons, proficient in the Blue and the Red, who now wish to advance themselves within this Council of Knights and Princes of Babylon.
Who vouches for their proficiency in the Red and the Blue?
I, who am a Knight and Prince of Babylon and the Conductor of this Council do so vouch.
I see that they wear the dress of the Blue and the Red but what else do they bring?
They bring the triune words of the Royal Arch.
Let them enter the ante-chamber and demonstrate the same. The Candidates form the Triple Arch of the RA and gives the Words JHV and JBN.
The recommendation is sufficient, wait you here while I report.
CoG returns within the curtain, leaving it closed behind him, stands within the curtain, salutes the MIK&P and says:
Be it known to you Most Ill. Knight and Prince, that three True and Worthy Masons, proficient in the Blue and Red and vouched for by a Knight and Prince of Babylon, the Conductor of this Council, and who have properly made known to me, the triune words of the Royal Arch, desire admittance as members of this Council of Knights and
Princes of the Suspended Cross of Babylon.
Since these strangers are properly vouched for, let them be admitted in due and ancient form. CoG returns to the curtain and opens it wide with the aid of the Herald.
Strangers, the Most Illustrious Knight and Prince has favourably considered your petition and I have his command to permit your entrance into this Council, Enter therefore, Cond. and Cands. enter within the curtain and now listen carefully while the Illustrious Knight and Reverend Prelate seeks the favour of Heaven upon your undertaking.
O Thou King of Heaven, we extol and honour Thee; all Thy works are truth and all Thy ways are judgment; Thou raiseth them that are humiliated and humbleth them who walk in pride. O Thou, who did aforetime preserve Thy servants, Shadrack, Meshack and Abednego, who for Thy namesake were cast into the fiery furnace, and did bring
them forth unscathed, do Thou now bless these our Brothers and enable them to pass through the fiery furnace of worldly troubles and temptations, unharmed and trusting in Thee, Great King of Power.
Herald stands and reads Daniel Ch. III verses iv to vi and then sits.
CoG stands and reads Daniel Ch. III verses x, xi and xii then sits.
MIK&P stands and reads Daniel Ch. III verses xiv and xv then sits.
Cond. reads Daniel Ch. III verses xvi to xviii.
Let these rebels be bound and cast into the fiery furnace seven times heated, even as it hath been before proclaimed.
The Cond. takes three pieces of twine and loosely binds the hands of the Candidates and stands them in the NW corner, where a ''fire" is lit.
Rec stands and reads Daniel Ch.III verses xxi to the end then sits.
Alm’r stands and reads Daniel Ch. V verses i to vi and xxv to xxix, at the mention of the words MMTU the board is raised, at the end of the reading the Almoner remains standing.
Brother Knight and Prince Conductor, you will now take the Candidates before the MIK&P for closing instructions.
Conductor approaches the Candidates, loosens their bands and instructs them to follow him. He takes them before the MJK&P.
Most Illustrious Knight and Prince, I now present to you these strangers for further instruction.
Brothers Three, before you can be instructed further, it is necessary that you take a solemn oath to keep all that you may hear and see, solely unto yourself. Do you Brother … agree? First cand. assents. Do you Brother … agree? Second cand. assents and do you Brother … also agree? Third cand. assents.
Brother Knights and Princes Herald and Almoner, bring forth the Board which bears the Sacred Words. The Board is brought and held before the three Cands.


You will each place your right hands upon this Board and repeat after me: All stand. I, … (full names) do vow and obligate myself, that l will faithfully keep all the secrets of this degree unto myself and speak thereof to no one save those who have come by them in the same lawful manner as I now do. l further vow that I will never confer this degree on any Brother, in any form other than that in which l have received it and only then, on three Brethren, qualified by the degrees of Blue and Red Masonry and then only in a Council such as this.
All this I solemnly promises under a penalty no less than that I shall be cut in pieces and my house be made a dunghill. (Daniel III xxix.)
You will now remove your hands from the Board.
The Board is removed and the Her. and Alm. resume their seats.
My Brother, Very Illustrious Knight and Prince, will you now instruct these new Knights and Princes in the ways of our Council.
VIK&P, rises and stands before the Cands. in the East:
Knights and Princes, permit me first of all to congratulate you on your advancement to this degree. Were I to tell you of the full history of this ancient Order of Freemasonry many hours would be required. Let me simply state therefore that it carne into being very soon after Speculative Masonry became popular and it is said that it may have been known as early as the year 1725, when it was called the Suspending Cross of Babylon. While the true meaning of that symbolic name is now lost in the mists of time we still hold that emblem dear and as such that special cross is suspended behind the chair of the MIK&P. While the Scripture does mention the form of the Sacred Words, we have chosen to commemorate them in such a manner as that a cross may be made about them and such was the form of the Board bearing their representation and upon which you swore your Obligation.
Our Secrets are numerous but should be committed to memory and never written. The Sacred Words, which you saw upon the Board are, Mene, Mene, Tekel, Upharsin. You will see upon the sash that I wear, two equilateral triangles, with the letters S, M and A in the angles of the first, and M, M, T and U in the angles and centre of the second. The first stand for the names of our Patrons, Shadrack, Meshack and Abednego and the latter for the Sacred Words. The Grip is given by placing both hands on the others' shoulders as if to cast him into a fiery furnace. When the Grip is given the Word may be initiated by the first stating Mene, to which the other replies Mene, the first again says Tekel to which the rejoinder is Upharsin. Our Pass Word is Daniel, after that illustrious son of God. The Grand Sign is given by drawing your right hand downwards from head to waist, then across the body from left to right hip and finally from left should to right hip, in allusion to the penalty of your Obligation, that of having your body cut in pieces. Finally, the Working Sign and the Sign of the Degree is given by raising your right hand, with the first finger pointing, the others being closed, in front of the face level with the eyes, as if writing with the finger upon a wall.
The VIK&P salutes the MJK&P and resumes his place. The MJK&P now approaches the Candidates and the Almoner follows him with the sashes of the degree on a bolster or cushion. The Candidates are directed to remove their aprons and RA sashes.
I now in vest you with the Sash of a Knight and Prince of the Suspended Cross of Babylon. You will note that it is of the colour green, signifying immortality and also is a reminder that the good deeds carried out by an individual, remain in the minds of others long after this mortal frame has decayed and turned into dust. The design thereon and the meaning thereof has been fully explained to you and now it gives me great pleasure to place it over your right shoulder and welcome you, a true Knight and Prince of our Order.
The MIK&P resumes his station and the Conductor shows the candidate(s) to a vacant place, before he also resumes his station.
Knight and Prince Guard, are you satisfied that the Council is still closed to the outer world and remains properly guarded?
Guard opens the door, looks out and then returns.
I am so satisfied.
MIK&P, gives ** and all stand:
Then Knights and Princes, the purpose for which this Council was opened now being completed and there being nothing further requiring our attention, I now declare this Council of Knights and Princes of the Suspended Cross of Babylon, duly closed.
Gives ** followed by the VIK&P, Guard and Sentinel.