Baltic Crusades: Lithuania

Lithuanian Infantry

Lithuanian Infantry

The best known history of the Baltic Crusades has to be the century long war which existed against the Lithuanians, which ended in 1410 with the defeat of the Teutonic Order at Tannenburg, considered by many, as the ending of the Baltic Crusades.

Latvian, Estonian and Prussian tribes stood their ground in bloody battles against the invading Crusaders.  Whilst neighbouring Lithuanians, formed their own pagan kingdom, to become a great power and serious military opponent in the eyes of the European Crusaders.

Following many an armed conflict with Teutonic and Livonian Orders, the Lithuanian city of Klaipeda was captured in 1252.  Duke Mindaugas of Lithuania surrounded by Knights had no choice but to bow down and accept Christianity in 1253.  Then most of Lithuania became part of the Christian realm, with the exception of Samogita who refused to accept Mindaugas as their leader.  A number of the Lithuanian Grand Dukes opted to be baptized into Catholicism as a way to bring bloodshed to an end.  However, the fighting didn’t end!

In 1263, Mindaugas was assassinated, and cheated Lithuanians reverted back to their pagan beliefs, for they wanted land not the saving of their souls.  The Order of the Teutonic Knights defeated Prussia in 1284, and it was assimilated into Polish, German and Lithuanian societies.  The title Prussia was appropriated by German conquerors for themselves.

14th century Crusaders continued their hold on Baltic lands, strengthening their power on Estonia in 1343, a result of the peasant uprising against Danish rule, and the sale of northern Estonia to the Teutonic Order for 10,000 marks.  Grand Duke Gediminas of Lithuania expanded his territory to the south and east, preventing Crusader incursions into his land.  However, in 1382 Lithuania lost Samogitia and for the next 30 years, came under the rule of Teutonic Knights.

Grand Duke Jogaila of Lithuania sought to preserve his country, and so it was in 1386, he married Queen Jadwiga of Poland.  This marriage saw the creation of the “Union of Kreva” a powerful Lithuanian/Polish state.  This union cemented the Christian character of Lithuania.

In 1410, the Lithuanians formed a coalition consisting of Russians, Poles, Tatars and Czechs who took on the might of the Teutonic Knights at the “Battle of Zalgiris” at Tannenberg, bringing an end to the Baltic Crusades.

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Baltic Crusades: Definitions

Baltic Crusades1

The Baltic Crusades were religious wars which took place between the 12th and 13th century.  Undertaken by Christian military orders, against those who lived on the shores of the Baltic Sea.  The result of many battles, led to the conversion and baptism to Christianity.

The Baltic/Northern Crusades date back to 1195 when Pope Celestine III called for these crusades against its pagan people.  Christian Kingdoms of Poland, Scandinavia and the Holy Roman Empire had moved its forces into position, ready to conquer its pagan neighbours.

The Wendish Crusade took place in 1147, and the campaigns were against the Polabian Slavs also knows as the Wends, of northern and eastern Germany.  The Wendish Crusade took place alongside the Second Crusade by the Catholic Church against Islam.

The Swedish Crusades took place in 1150 and 1293, and were carried out against the Tavastians, Karelins and Finns.

The Danish Crusades took place between the years of 1191 and 1202, and was spearheaded by Anders Sunesen a Danish Archbishop of Lund, together with his brother.

During the 12th century, the people of Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia formed a non-Christian wedge against their enemies; the Catholic Church in the west and the Orthodox Church in the east.  Two Christian denominations, with two different creeds, failed to convert the people.

(Image) Baltic Crusade: mmdtkw.org

Teutonic Knights: Ice Battle

Baltic Crusade Knights

The campaigns of the Baltic Crusades were fought in difficult terrain and often in snowy weather conditions that could hardly have been more different from the blazing heat of the Holy Land Crusades.

One historical Teutonic Knights campaign took place on the 5th April 1242 as they clashed with Russians under the command of Alexander Nevsky at Lake Peipus in Eastern Estonia.

Some 30 mounted knights and sergeants along with 250 Estonian foot soldiers, clashed with 300 Russians.

Dressed in distinctive white mantles emblazoned with a black cross, the knights were well equipped with helmets, mail coats, swords and spears.  They were confident they had superior armoury and weaponry, so they charged at the Russian ranks, only to be encircled and forced back.  These warriors were forced onto the frozen lake where most of them were slaughtered.

Baltic Crusade Conversions

Baltic Crusade Knights

With the public obsession with the Holy Wars and Crusades in the Far East.  It wasn’t long before the Catholic Church and its ruling military forces discovered that unchristian Pagan lands still existed.

Europe was flooded with soldiers, mercenaries and fortune hunters, ready to sell their sword to the highest bidder.  There were military factions like the “Teutonic Order” who had achieved little success in the Holy Land, compared with the Templar’s or Hospitaller’s.  Now they sought out an opportunity to claim their place, in the annals of history.

Baltic pagan tribes separated from European lands, hidden behind forests and swamps, living the old ways as their ancestors had, from generation to generation.  Many an armed conflict took place, but made little impact on culture and life.

For many a decade, Vikings attempted to overthrow, establishing control over Baltic shores.  Their endeavours had little success and were either overthrown, driven away and chose to mix with local tribes.

Many an outsider set their sights on the Russian Orthodox Church, they who had attempted to Christianize the Baltic converts with conversion to Orthodoxy.  Russian warlords wanted to subjugate pagan Balts and collect more taxes…

Polish Dukes made attacks against Old Prussians in expansion of their lands.  They attempted conversion of Pagan Prussians to Catholicism.

Old Prussian Crusade

Prussian Crusade

In the year 1226, after the Old Prussians had destroyed the Polish Order of Dobrin which had been formed with the express purpose to subdue the Prussians.  The Polish Duke Konrad appealed for help from the German Teutonic Order, and offered them in return for their assistance some of his lands, which they could use as a foothold for expansion into Prussia.

The conquest of Prussia took some 50 years of continuous bloodshed to complete.  During which time native Prussians who remained un-baptized were subjugated, killed or exiled.  Many battles between knights and Prussians were ferocious; in some lands the people were exterminated, leaving a barren land… no human life remained.

Similarly as Latvian and Estonian tribes, Prussians were not prepared to give up their religion, their lifestyle.  In many cases they chose to die rather than surrender.

Those Prussians who tried to resist, went off to newly established pagan Kingdom of Lithuania, and continued their fight against these invaders, amongst the Lithuanians.

It wasn’t long before empty Prussian lands soon became inhabited by German settlers, and any remaining Old Prussians became peasants or were assimilated with the Germans, and vanished from the pages of history.  Later German settlers started calling themselves Prussians, and so the Kingdom of Prussia was so formed.

Rosicrucians: Out of Darkness

Rosicrucian Order

In the 18th century, some four hundred years after the Templar Order had been forced out of the limelight.  They were to emerge as an influential Order within Masonic and Rosicrucian beliefs.

Karl Gottheff, Varon von Hund, founder of the Strict Observance Rite, who established Templar traditions, Templar rules within the Masons.  Baron von Hund had been initiated into the Paris Lodge, led by Lord Kilmarnock, Grand Master of Scottish Freemasons, and the Guardians of Templar traditions.

Supporters of the Jacobite cause claimed that a Masonic Lodge had been founded in 1700’s Scotland, and drew its charter from a surviving Templar Chapter, which had been operational for some 700 years, in Bristol.

At his Masonic initiation, von Hund claims to have met with the knight of the Red Feather, better known as Prince Charles Stuart.  Baron von Hund went on to found a German branch of the neo-Templar’s in Germany.  Based on von Hund’s account of things, the Scottish chapter of the Knights Templar had been founded by two English members of the Order.  They who had discovered the Elixir of Life, and actively practised alchemy.

A popular 18th century occult myth states that Templar’s were initiates of Gnostic teachings passed down by the Essenes, they who had iniated Jesus into its mysteries.  Meo-Templarism attempted to combine pagan and wisdom with Christian ideals.  According to Freemasonry, Templar influence of the 18th century spoke of a myth; three renegade Knights betrayed King Phillip of France to fellow Masons, who murdered Hiram Abiff in Solomon’s Temple.  Masonic references of assassination of Charles de Monte Carmel a prominent Templar who underwent a ritual murder…  This murder according to 18th century Masons, marked a turning point in the history of the Knights Templar and led to their eventual downfall.

The survival of the Knights Templar tradition was masterminded by Jacques de Molay, the Order’s last Grand Master, whilst in a French prison awaiting his execution.  On the evening of the 17th March 1314 the night before being burnt at the stake on unproved charges of heresy.  DeMolay sent a trusted aide to the Templar’s secret crypt in Paris, where the Order’s past Grand Master’s had been entombed.  Symbolic objects sacred to the Order, were duly removed.

Jacques de Molay trusted his aide, with the future of the Knights Templar.  The two pillars which stood at the entrance to the templar tombs were in fact hollow and contained money and artefacts.  It was De Molay’s wish that they be removed, before falling into the hands of the French Monarchy.  The Templar money and symbolic objects were to be used in the re-creation of the Order, preventing the loss of their secrets.

The two pillars of the crypt entrance were copies of the obelisks which stand at the gateway of Solomon’s Temple.  The pillars held detailed manuscripts, detailing occult teachings within the Templar Order.

Johann Augustus Starck, another claimant of the Templar revival, encountered Masonic Templarism whilst teaching in St.Petersburg.  He went on to make contact with surviving Templar Order’s in Southern France, they who were renowned for practising in the Cathar style.  It was Stark’s belief that the Templar’s had inherited occult from the likes of Persia, Seria and Egypt, and these were passed on to the Essenic secret society, operating in the Middle East during the Crusades.

His version of neo-Templarism received approval leading to patronage of European aristocrats and membership of new Masonic Templar lodges.  Gustav III of Sweden became a patron to neo-Templarism, a firm supporter of the Scottish Pretenders and the Jacobites.

Frederick the Great

Frederick the Great

In 1767, Frederick the Great founded two neo-Masonic lodges; “Order of the Architects of Africa,” and the “Knights of Light.”  That same year, Frederick the Great became a financial supporter of Orthodox Freemasonry.  In the next year (1768) Frederick commissioned the construction of a Grand Lodge for the Prussians.

A few years later, the title Illuminati was one of the Masonic Secret Societies.  The “Order of the Illuminati, the occultists became a title associated by Rosicrucian’s and known as key figures in secret political history.

The grand convention of Masonic Lodges in 1771 openly admitted mythical descent from the Templar Order.  Johann Augustus Stark’s group merged with Baron von Hund’s.

adam-weishauptThe Illuminati were founded by Adam Weishaupt, a professor at the Bavarian University of Ingoldstat, in the year 1776, the same year as the American Revolution.  He being of Jewish descent, educated by Jesuits in the Catholic faith.

Whilst an undergraduate, Weishaupt studied Ancient Pagan Religions, Eleusinian Mysteries and Theories of the Greek mystic and philosopher; Pythagoras.  As a student drafted a constitution for a secret society, centred on paganism.

In 1774, he made contact with a Masonic lodge in Germany, and was disappointed by what he found.  They being ignorant to occult and Masonic connections, with no knowledge of pagan symbolism.

On the 1st May 1776, Adam Weishaupt announced the foundation of the “Order of Perfectibilists,” which later became known as the Illuminati.

Weishaupt had a vision, a political vision, a utopian state, with the abolition of private property, social authority and nationality.  He believed human beings would live in harmony, within a brotherhood, based on love, peace, spiritual wisdom and equality.  His main targets of reform were the Monarchy, Church and rich landowners.

The Illuminists attempted overthrow of Hapsburg in 1784, which led to the Bavarian government banning all secret societies, and so it was Weishaupt’s followers went underground.

Comte de Mirabeau a prominent Illuminist, was one of the founders responsible for the French Revolution of 1789.  Aiming at the destruction of the French Monarchy and destroying the Catholic Church, to be replaced by the “Religion of Love,” across France.

Early 1791, allegations arose about the role played by Masons and Illuminate, partly based on the confessions of Comte Cagliostro (Comte Cagliostro born Joseph Balsamo in Parlemo, Sicily in 1743) arrested in 1789 on charges of heresy.

Comte Cagliostro

Comte Cagliostro

Cagliostro married Lorenza Felicioni whom he controlled by use of hypnotism, taught to him by Dr.Mesmer a fellow Mason.  Lorenza went on to denounce her husband in the “Inquisition for practising heresy.”  He spoke of an international conspiracy by Illuminati, neo-Templar’s and Freemasons, taking place across Europe.  He revealed their ultimate object, was to complete work started by the original Knights Templar; the overthrow of the Papacy and the election of an Illuminist as Pope.

He went on to confess that large sums of money had been deposited in banks in Holland, Italy, France and England to finance revolutions.  Funds to finance the French Revolution came from the House of Rothschild… Was this fact or fiction, was Comte Cagliostro just trying to save his life.  No historical evidence can be found to support such claims.

The radicalism of Masonic Lodges prior to the French Revolution, alienated followers amongst aristocratic classes in France.  By 1792 few lodges were still practising, and faced hostilities from the revolutionary government.  At Versailles former Grand Master of a Templar lodge was lynched by an angry mob.  Masonry came under suspicion by those in power, in their belief of a counter revolution.

The Masons who had helped start the French Revolution, and within a few years became a victim of their own creation.

French Revolution

French Revolution

By 1796, it had become common knowledge that Masons and Templars had a hand in the French Revolution of 1789.  With Jacques de Molay, Templar’s last Grand Master, a prisoner in the Bastille before his execution in 1314, and as such, the Bastille was the first target for the mob.  It wasn’t long before connections revealed that the Templar’s and Jesuits were dedicated to the creation of a church within a church.

Duc’d Orleans, Grand Master of French freemasonry an illuminist, plotted against the French Royal family.  It is believed he practised a secret occult ritual, using relics from the past, which once belonged to de Molay.  Were these the sacred objects from the Templar Crypt in Paris?  Unfortunately, historical writings are unable to provide the answer.

“The Tomb of Jacques de Molay” was published in France of 1796, claiming that the French Revolution was the work of anarchists, they who could trace their lineage back to the Templar’s and Assassins.

Father Bamuel a Jesuit priest published his book; “Memoires pour serir de I’histoire du Jacobinisme,” tracing the survival of Manichean heresy through Catharism, Assassins, Templars, Freemasons and French Revolution.

The Royal Families of Europe were shocked by the Illuminist plot of universal revolution, they had witnessed the French Revolution and feared being next in line.  In 1790 the Bavarian government brought in a law that membership of the Illuminati was classed as a capital offence.

England feared the hand of these secret societies, and Parliament attempted to bring in the “Unlawful Societies Act,” which would have outlawed Freemasonry.  It failed, because they never dabbled in politics.

Napoleon Bonaparte

Napoleon Bonaparte

Napoleon Bonaparte’s rise meant Freemasons faced a bleak future.  Bonaparte was well aware of the Illuminist’s role in the French Revolution.  He used the Freemasons for his own political ends.

Joseph and Lucien, brothers of Napoleon Bonaparte became Grand Masters of the Orient.  They attracted many new members, and by the end of his reign the Grand Orient boasted some 1200 lodges across France, and by the 1800’s had infiltrated the French Colonies.

In the March of 1808, a neo-Templar Order held a public requiem for Jacques de Molay, the last Grand Master of the Knights Templar.  Held at St.Paul’s Church in Paris, presided over by the Canon of Notre Dame; Abbe Pierre Romains.

In 1809 a secret Masonic Lodge came into being in France “Sublimes Maitres Parfait” (Sublime Perfect Masters), with similarities to Catharism.  They opposed Napoleon and saw him as a traitor of France.

The pre-Royalist Masonic Lodge claimed success in 1814, with the abdication of Napoleon Bonaparte in favour of King Louis XVII.  The Paris revolt of 1830, led to Louis Philippe taking his place on the throne.

king louis Philippe

Louis Philippe

Louis Philippe placed Freemasons under his protection, appointed Duc d’Orleans his son, as the Order’s new Grand Master.

The Masonic convention of 1842 held in Strasburg, sowed the seeds of the 1848 Revolution by radical elements in European Masonry; they preached anarchism and socialism.

In 1850 Napoleon III made it law, that Grand Orient Lodges were forbidden to interfere in politics, even though they received support of the politicians.

The Illuminati failed to create social order across France, but had influenced another revolution.

In 1776 American colonists challenged the British in the War of Independence, the blueprint, a society based on democracy, freedom and social equality… A New World.

American War of Independence

The American Revolution, a social experiment engineered by secret societies.

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Medieval Rosicrucian History

Rosicrucian Order

The Rosicrucian Order

According to Rosicrucian mythical history, the said order survived the demise of pagan religions and the rise of Christianity.  It is believed, when the baby Jesus was born in Bethlehem, three initiates of the Order, travelled from the east to pay their respects.  Emperor Charlemagne of the Holy Roman Emperor, an early Mason built Gothic Cathedrals and went on to found a Rosicrucian lodge at Toulouse and one in France in the 9th century.  A heretical group of Roman Catholic monks founded the Order’s first Rosicrucian College in 1000 AD.

Grand Masters of the Order have contained many notable figures throughout history:

  • Dante, the Italian writer, poet and philosopher.
  • Francis Bacon, Chancellor of England under the reign of King James.
  • Robert Boyle, the English scientist.
  • Sir Christopher Wren, England’s renowned architect following the Great Fire of London, most remembered for St.Paul’s Cathedral.
  • Benjamin Franklin and the American Revolution of 1776.
  • Thomas Jefferson, President of U.S.A.

The Order itself had been in existence for some 3500 years, since its foundation in Ancient Egypt, under the rule of Pharaoh Thutmoses III of the 18th Dynasty.

The Rosicrucian’s political manifesto called for the abolishment of the current monarchy, and replaced by wise rulers.

  • A radical reformation of sciences and philosophy based on spiritual principles.
  • The discovery of universal medicine, one which would cure all illnesses and diseases.

English Civil War

The English Civil War of 1640 laid the foundations for revolution, giving the King the right to rule, without any divine rights.  A bloody conflict ended the French Revolution with the death of an English King.

Writings have been put forward, that the Order of the Rosy Cross was founded by ex-members of the Templar Order, after Pope Clement suppressed the Order.  The Order of the Templar’s and Rosy Cross (Rosicrucian’s), both used the same symbol, and dedicated to political and religious reforms.  Both were secretly engaged in occult and pagan practices.  Medieval Rosicrucian’s were credited with possession of magical powers; prolonging youth, summoning of spirits, invisibility and turning lead into gold.

Rosy Cross, the term derives from Latin; dew, crux or cross, the chemical sign for light.  Rosy Cross translates to that of an occult symbol of alchemical, turning matter into spirit, represented by lead and gold.

Based upon Freemasonry, occult symbolism of the Order of the Rosy Cross, represents evolution of humanity from materialism to spiritual perfection.  Symbolism changed the Order’s political aims, restoration of ancient world sciences, destroyed by Christianity.

Rosicrucian’s and Freemasons became linked at an early age, based on the Masonic poem of 1638:

“For what we presage is not in grosse,
for we be brethren of the Rosie Crosse,
we have the Mason’s Word and second sight,
things to come we can foretell aright.”

This informs us that the Rosicrucian’s knew the inner secrets of Freemasonry, possessing psychic powers to tell the future.

King Edward IIIThe Order of the Garter used the same symbol as the Rosy Cross in its symbolism, and as such has been linked with the Rosicrucian’s.  Founded in 1348 by Plantagenet King Edward III of England and dedicated to the Virgin Mary.   Edward a student of Arthurian legends, an Order which met at Windsor Castle around a specially built table, similar to that of King Arthur’s Fellowship of the Round Table.

The Order of the Garter insignia consists of a jewelled collar of gold and red roses with five petals contained within tiny garters.  The roses alternate with twenty-six golden knots, each represents a member of the Order.  Hanging from the collar, a representation of St.George the patron saint of England, killing the dragon, enamelled with gold and set with diamonds.

Knights would wear a velvet garter with red and white letters, the Order’s motto; “Honi soit qui mal y pense or Evil be to he who evil thinks.”  This motto came about when Edward made a comment as he bent down and picked up the garter dropped by the Countess of Salisbury, whilst they danced, which led Edward to form the premier chivalric order in English history.

Historical records show that the son of Edward III had connections with knights who fought in the Holy Land, and inducted into the Templar tradition.  These same knights founded an esoteric lodge on their return to England, and were known to practice the occult arts.  Over the centuries Rosicrucian’s or Masons had been knighted into the Order of the Garter, a privilege granted by a reigning monarch.

During the Elizabethan period of Tudor England, Rosicrucian’s and the monarchy had close ties with each other.

Dr John Dee

Dr. John Dee

Grand Master, Dr John Dee (1527-1608) of the Order, was the confidant of Queen Elizabeth I and a practising occultist.  In May of 1555 after casting the horoscopes of Mary Tudor and Princess Elizabeth, was arrested and charged with bewitching the Queen.

Despite his short spell of imprisonment, he went on to receive Royal patronage of Elizabeth I when she ascended to the throne.  He became the Queen’s confidant.  Dee played an active role in diplomatic and intelligence matter’s and was closely associated with Sir Francis Walsingham, credited for the founding of the British Secret Service.  Walsingham first came on the scene as the Queen’s bodyguard, at a time when the Queens life was in mortal danger, and went on to develop an intelligence network across England and Europe.

Sir Francis Walsingham

Rumours spread that both Sir Francis Walsingham and Dr John Dee were students of occultism and met in an underground witches coven in Tudor England, gathering material for his intelligence network.  In 1570 Walsingham was appointed Ambassador to France, which enabled him to extend his spy network.

Negotiations were taking place in Paris, for a proposed marriage between Queen Elizabeth I of England and the Duke of Anjou.  Walsingham was of the opinion that such a marriage would not be in the best interests of England, and worked to undermine it at every stage.  Dee was instructed by Elizabeth, to check the stars, and he reported back to his Queen, it would not be a happy union for Queen and country.

Sir Francis Walsingham and Dr John Dee created a series of codes which agents could use to send messages across Europe.

A book of cryptography written by Abbot of Spanheim was discovered by Dee in 1562.  He went on to write “The Monad,” a book of the occult, a study in esoteric symbolism.

With the publication of the “Fama Fraternitatis,” a number of new lodges were created, and members claimed that the Order of the Ruscrucian’s played a part in the Reformation, rise of the Lutheran movement of Germany and Switzerland.  As supporters of Protestant dissidents, it led to the weakening of the political power of the Roman Catholic Church; enemy of the Cathars, Templars and Freemasons.  In the beginning the Rosicrucian Order, believed religious reformers were the power behind the Protestant movement, creators of spiritual tolerance, and in turn gave them support.  In fact Protestantism became spiritually bankrupt as the Roman Christians, which gave it substance of esoteric credibility.

Johann Valentin Andrea, a Lutheran clergyman born in Austria of 1586.  In 1620 he founded Rosicrucian lodges across Austria.

During the English Reformation of Tudor history, King Henry VIII will be the King most remembered for the destruction of churches and cathedrals; “Dissolution of the Monasteries.”  Protestants rejected feminine principles within the Christian faith, with the rejection of the Virgin Mary, which led to the rise of Anglo-Catholicism within the Church of England.

Elias Ashmole

Elias Ashmole

Elias Ashmole (1617-1692) friend of King Charles II, knight of the Order of the Garter and Freemason.  In 1652, Ashmole revealed his connection to the Rose Cross, and spoke of the Duke of Norfolk, grand Marshal of England being cured of leprosy.

In 1650, the book “Fasciculus Chemicus” written by Arthur Dee, personal physician to Czar Ivan the terrible was published by Ashmole.  With the death of Ivan, Dee played his part and the Romanov dynasty was established upon the throne.

Elias Ashmole and William Lilly were founders of the Rosicrucian lodge in London.  It symbolized the golden age prior to the fall when humanity was spiritually perfect, a time referring to the rebuilding of Solomon’s Temple according to Templar traditions.

Social reforms and attacks upon the religious establishment, characterized Oliver Cromwell’s activities in the 1640‘s.  This suggests that secret societies supported the “English Civil War.”  Many Rosicrucian’s and Freemasons were aristocrats, and would support the Royalist cause… Although the Order called for the abolition of the monarchy.

The Royal Society was formed in 1660, built upon Rosicrucian concept of an Invisible College, offering studies in science, religion, and the arts.

By the latter part of the 1640’s the Rosicrucian Order had formed lodges across Europe; Hamburg, Nuremburg, Paris and Amsterdam.  In the early years of the 18th century, one by one, Masonic lodges were opening their doors.

An important Masonic personality of the time, Chevalier Andrew Ramsay, supporter of the Jacobite cause, whose intention it was to bring the Stuart dynasty back to its rightful place; the English throne.  In 1736 whilst addressing French Masons he spoke of Masonry being the heir to Templar Secrets.

English aristocrats, supporters of the Stuarts introduced Freemasonry into France.  Members of the Society of Legitimists campaigning for Scottish princes, and the British crown.  In 1721 Lord Derwentwater founded France’s first lodge in Dunkirk with a charter granted by England’s Grand Lodge.

By royal decree the King of France prohibited membership to those who served in his court, threatening them with imprisonment in the Bastille.  Despite disapproval, Masonry flourished across France, and by the 1750’s many lodges were actively practising their arts.

The Roman Catholic Church condemned Freemasonry in 1738.

Grand Master Duc d’Anton of the French lodges, publicly preached of liberty, brotherhood, love and equality.  He was succeeded by Comte de Clement, who under his Grand Mastership, Freemasons split into several groups.  Duc de Chartres was elected as their new leader in 1771 upon the death of Comte de Clement.  During his time, French and English Freemasonry separated as each became independent bodies.

Savalette de Lage founded the “Friends of Truth” secret society in the 18th century.  The politics of this group mapped out plans for social reformation, which later became the French Revolution.  The Neuf Soeurs Masonic Lodge founded in Paris had the task of creating an alternative educational system.

Neuf Soeurs lodge members gave lectures on history, literature, chemistry and medicine at the College of Apollo, the Greek Sun God.  During the French Revolution, the college became known as Lycee Republican, and its tutors wore the Phrygian cap of the revolutionary militia.

Duc de la Rochafoucard, one of the leading members of the radical lodge, who translated the American Constitution into French.

Images:
English Civil War – Edward III: Wikipedia
Elizabeth I – John Dee: Wikipedia
Francis Walsingham: Theonomy Resources
Elias Ashmole: Ashmolean