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Darrell Engelbrect




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PostPosted: Mon 11 Oct, 2010 10:21 pm    Post subject: Masonic Ritual Sword         Reply with quote

I obtained this sword last year for my birthday, tell me what you think, mind the terrible photo quality, it's a web cam.

http://www.ruble-enterprises.com/lilley.htm

The Lilley Co. is written on the leather case.



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Picture 51.jpg


"I speak not against masters of defence indeed, they are to be honored, nor against the science, it is noble, and in my opinion to be preferred next to divinity, for as divinity preserves the soul from hell and the devil, so does this noble science defend the body from wounds & slaughter. And moreover, the exercising of weapons puts away aches, griefs, and diseases, it increases strength, and sharpens the wits. It gives a perfect judgement, it expels melancholy, choleric and evil conceits, it keeps a man in breath, perfect health, and long life. It is unto him that has the perfection thereof, a most friendly and comfortable companion when he is alone, having but only his weapon about him. It puts him out of fear, & in the wars and places of most danger, it makes him bold, hardy and valiant."

George Silver - Paradoxes of Defense
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Glen A Cleeton




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PostPosted: Tue 12 Oct, 2010 6:22 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi Darrell,

As you already have Ron Ruble's pages bookmarked, you will note that the case at least was marked to a short period of 1925 until 1931 (shortly preceding the acquisition of Ames).

I am not sure exactly when this form of the guard was adopted by Lilley. Some of these al fresco (fresh air) type of openwork jobs are found made of wood and that even more underlines that the swords are ceremonial. Yet others have mentioned it a common variant in Texas only but I am not convinced.

The Sir Knight's name that appears etched on the blade may be traceble, while in this cases, the case kind of pins it in time. search out the name though, there are some interesting stories that can be found in pursuing some of them.

Fraternal swords stack up in piles and a friend here had captured a good picture of those at one point at one of the arms shows.



It is not uncommon for these to surface at yard sales and even in the trash. It was after the American Civil War that these fraternities blossomed but some, such as the Free Masons, have an older history on the books. There are several branches of Free Masonry and once a Master Mason, other orders (as it were) come to light and opportunity.

There is a fairly recent publication regarding fraternal swords, as well as an earlier abstract from Hamilton. Mark Cloke, of www.oldswords.com has that on the web (you may need to register). The recent book is available from booksellers, or the publishers site.

http://www.manatarmsbooks.com/ham_mar_kap.html

Cheers

GC
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Jonathan Blair




PostPosted: Tue 12 Oct, 2010 7:18 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

My grandfather, James R. Brewer, Sr. of Decatur, GA, had a similar sword as he was a member in good standing with the Masons. When he died back in 1989, my grandmother wanted to give me the sword, along with the hat and sword belt, because everytime I came to visit, I always asked (read as begged) to see it. However, the local Masonic temple/lodge/whatever that my grandfather belonged to DEMANDED that his sword (and the hat and belt) be surrendered to them. All I have is the fond memories and a faded polaroid photo of me at age 5 wearing pyjamas and the hat and belt, with the sword in my hand.

That is the number one reason why I won't even consider membership with the Masons.

"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword." - The Lord Jesus Christ, from The Gospel According to Saint Matthew, chapter x, verse 34, Authorized Version of 1611
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Glen A Cleeton




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PostPosted: Tue 12 Oct, 2010 8:18 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi Jonathan,

I wonder if there is be more to the story than you may have known at the time. The sheer numbers of swords that surface more seems to indicate it quite common that the swords remain long after any direct association with a family. As there are "Jewels" associated with different levels and rders of Free Masonry, there may be a possibility that part of that ensemble held more importance than that of a fellow knight or lesser master mason's sword. More regarding a specific commandery might yield more information. As not directly involved, all I can do is guess. I know my grandfather was a mason but no sword surfaced during or after his passing. Although, nepotism was often assumed of both my dad and myself. I have encountered those queries time and again.

There was though a recent episode on th History Channel (American Pickers?) in which a pile of stuff from a Shriner's hall was located but the owner indicating there was a bylaw from the organization that nothing ever be sold.

Cheers

GC
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Jonathan Blair




PostPosted: Tue 12 Oct, 2010 9:14 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Glen A Cleeton wrote:
I wonder if there is be more to the story than you may have known at the time. The sheer numbers of swords that surface more seems to indicate it quite common that the swords remain long after any direct association with a family. As there are "Jewels" associated with different levels and rders of Free Masonry, there may be a possibility that part of that ensemble held more importance than that of a fellow knight or lesser master mason's sword. More regarding a specific commandery might yield more information. As not directly involved, all I can do is guess. I know my grandfather was a mason but no sword surfaced during or after his passing. Although, nepotism was often assumed of both my dad and myself. I have encountered those queries time and again.

There was though a recent episode on th History Channel (American Pickers?) in which a pile of stuff from a Shriner's hall was located but the owner indicating there was a bylaw from the organization that nothing ever be sold.


Perhaps, Glen. Frankly, I don't know. Considering that my grandmother passed twelve years ago, as has my mother (her daughter), I can't ask them. I don't know which rite or particular organization within the Masons that he belonged to, nor his rank. I'm not even sure which of the three temples/lodges/whatevers in the Atlanta area he belonged to (assuming that the place is still open), so I don't know who to ask.

At this point, I have a much nicer Albion.

"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword." - The Lord Jesus Christ, from The Gospel According to Saint Matthew, chapter x, verse 34, Authorized Version of 1611
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Jonathan Hopkins




PostPosted: Tue 12 Oct, 2010 9:34 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

If you have an interest in this type of sword in general, I saw a book at this year's Hartford Antique Arms Show entitled The American Fraternal Sword: An Illustrated Reference Guide by John D. Hamilton, Joseph Marino, & James Kaplan. I saw another pile of these swords this year with a sign that said "$75 each".
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GG Osborne




PostPosted: Tue 12 Oct, 2010 10:09 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This is the sword of a Knight Templar, the highest degree in the York Rite affiliated degrees of Masonry. A Knight's sword is silver but an officer's sword and scabbard fittings are gold washed. There is nothing particularily ritualistic about these swords as they are quite common. Your local Templay Commandry had no justification for even asking for the chapeau and sword of your grandfather. That is pure rubbish as it is not required.

The York Rite is the "New Testament" equivalent to the "Old Testament" Scottish Rite. After a Mason completes the Blue Lodge with the first three degrees of speculative freemasonry, one can go to either or both Rites for more study. The York Rite includes the Chapter, the Council and three chivalric degrees, Red Cross of Constantine, Knight of Malta and Knight Templar. The Scottish Rite has 32 degrees, the highest being Inspector General. The 33rd degree is by invitation only.

Swords are used throughout Masonry. more or less depending on your local body. The Tyler of a Blue Lodge guards the door with a drawn sword. Several of the Scottish Rite degrees have special swords, even, designed for use in a particular degree and the York Rite has the Templar sword which is used quite a bit.

Other fraternal groups have used swords, Odd Fellows, Knight of Columbus, Knights of Pythias, etc. Most of these swords are rather cheaply made and as you can see from the pictures above, quite common. Nearly all of the white handled swords shown above are KT swords.

Hope this helps a bit!

"Those who live by the sword...will usually die with a huge, unpaid credit card balance!"
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Darrell Engelbrect




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PostPosted: Tue 12 Oct, 2010 11:46 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for all the responses here guys. Also the Sir Knight in question is a Robert C. Wykert of Greeley Colorado as stated on the leather case it comes in.


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Picture 54.jpg
here's the calligraphic name

"I speak not against masters of defence indeed, they are to be honored, nor against the science, it is noble, and in my opinion to be preferred next to divinity, for as divinity preserves the soul from hell and the devil, so does this noble science defend the body from wounds & slaughter. And moreover, the exercising of weapons puts away aches, griefs, and diseases, it increases strength, and sharpens the wits. It gives a perfect judgement, it expels melancholy, choleric and evil conceits, it keeps a man in breath, perfect health, and long life. It is unto him that has the perfection thereof, a most friendly and comfortable companion when he is alone, having but only his weapon about him. It puts him out of fear, & in the wars and places of most danger, it makes him bold, hardy and valiant."

George Silver - Paradoxes of Defense
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