The Secrets of Masonry






THE document, of which the following pages present a faithful translation,
is preserved among the treasures of Lodge No. 00 Kilfunning. This Lodge
claims to be the oldest in Scotland, and the successive Right Worshipful
Masters assert that it was founded by those worthy operatives who left
the land of Israel carrying with them the stone upon which Jacob laid
his rebellious head at Bethel, and who, after many shipwrecks and much
personal danger, reached Caledonia; and, settling at Kilfunning, presented
Jacob's pillow to the people as the coronation stone of their future
Kings. Of the authenticity of the Gospel of St Andrew and the claim
of the Right Worshipful Masters it is enough to say that neither has
ever been challenged.




NOW, when the brethren had assembled themselves together to keep the
feast, the Right Worshipful Master, rising in his place, in the eastmost
part of the Lodge, put unto them the question in the manner of old
- How, now, chat is the day?

2. And, with one accord, the brethren answered him, saying, It is the
Feast of the holy Saint Andrew, Right Worshipful Master.

3. Then, knocking with a loud knock upon the pillar which was set in
front of him, and looking unto the S .... where sat the Worshipful
Junior Warden, the Right Worshipful Master said unto him Tell me, I
pray thee, what is the time?

4. The Worshipful Junior Warden, rising in his place in the S ....,
and, looking first at the clock which hung upon the wall, and again
at the glorious luminary of the day, as he might perceive it through
the little skylight that was in the roof, answered in a voice that
was full of rapture and expectancy, The Sun is in the Meridian, Right
Worshipful Master.

5. Now, at the words of the Worshipful Junior Warden, a knowing smile,
which betokened happiness and inward mirth, spread over the faces of
all the brethren who were gathered together.

6. The Right Worshipful Waster hearing the words, and perceiving the
smile, spake unto the Worshipful Junior Warden in this wise saying:

7. Worshipful Junior Warden, since the Sun is in the Meridian, I command
you to call the brethren from labour unto refreshment.

8. And the Worshipful Junior Warden, giving a loud knock with the mallet
on the pillar which was set in front of him, and looking unto the N
...., and unto the W ...., and again unto the S ...., said unto the
brethren, Ye have heard the Right Worshipful Master's commands that
ye cease from labour and pass to refreshment. Keep within hail, I pray,
that ye may come on again when called upon.

9. And again he knocked, and the knock which he gave upon his pillar
was repeated in the W . . . by the Worshipful Senior Warden on his
pillar, and by the Inner Guard upon the door, and by the Tyler upon
the outside of the door, and by the Right Worshipful Master upon his

10. And when they had all thus knocked in the manner customary with
the Order, and instituted by our first Grand Master H.A.B., at the
building of King Solomon's Temple, the Right Worshipful Masters casting
down his mallet with that indifference which betokeneth the comfort
that comes when freed from the cares of office, said, Brethren, the
Worshipful Junior Warden is in charge of the meeting.

11. Now, when the Right Worshipful Master had said these words, the
brethren altogether with a babel of voices began to speak of the things
that would be done ere yet the call to labour again should come to

12. And while the brethren spake among themselves there was much running
to and fro, much knocking down of seats and throwing up of tables,
till, in truth, to the eye of the observer, it might well have seemed
that labour had begun, rather than that labour had been brought to
a standstill.

13. The Steward, and all those who compassed him about, were in much
activity for a time, but at last the table was spread in sight of all
the brethren.


NOW this was the manner in which the table was spread in sight of all
the brethren.

2. At the head thereof, before the place in which the Right Worshipful
Master sat, was set the B . . . o . t . . H . . . L . . . closed as
was seemly.

3. And upon it lay the C and the S .....

4. And, flanking it on either side, to the right hand and to the left,
were the genuine working tools of the Merry Mason, namely, the barleybree,
and all manner of other liquors that the earth and the waters under
the earth could produce.

5. For I would have you to bear in mind that while the feast is the
Feast of the Holy Apostle, Saint Andrew, it is also the night set apart
to the memory of the unholy Saint John the Barleycorn.

6. And many there be who worship him in spirit and in truth.

7. Then, a little way off from the Right

Worshipful Master on every hand, there were as well beer as that which
is called stout; and still further off, as though to say that they
were not in special favour, were the beer that is surnamed ginger,
and the lemon of the squash.

8. Verily, verily, I say unto you that few there be which cast eyes
in the way of the waters that cheer but do not inebriate.

9. After a like manner the Steward furnished the tables with food,
- plentiful in kind and abundant in quantity.

10. And it was meet that he did so for, notwithstanding it is written
in the Gospel according to the Holy Saint John - not him of the Barleycorn
but him which was the Apostle - that five barley loaves and two small
fishes were sufficient unto the feeding of five thousand and the leaving
of many baskets of fragments to be gathered up, nevertheless, I tell
you, that these same barley loaves and fishes had been insufficient
for a meal unto the Right Worshipful Master himself.

11. The tables groaned with the steakpies that were stood upon them
and with the trenchers of tatties - called in the tongue of the English
potatoes - that invited the brethren to sup.

12. Now when grace had been said by the brother called the Chaplain
- the same which had left off the duty of cutting hair at threepence
per head (for he was a barber) and taken up the sacred office so that
the brethren might partake of the mercies in a seemly fashion - there
was much beating of the knife upon the fork, much running hither and
thither of waiters bent upon supplying what they called the inner man,
and much mumbling of men who would talk with mouths full of steakpie
and tattles.

13. At last, when all had supped to repletion and, in the words of
the immortal poet of the Scots, all had weelswalled kytes - whatever
these may be, for they pass my understanding who am a plain man unskilled
in the quaint tongues of the earth - the Right Worshipful Master, rising
in the E . . ., as was his wont, and looking toward the W . . . said
unto the Worshipful Senior Warden, who was seated there, How now, are
ye all charged in the W . . .?

14. And the Worshipful Senior Warden, casting his eyes about him to
make sure that he spoke truly, answereth, All in the W . . ., Right
Worshipful Master.

15. Then, in like manner looking unto the S ...., saith the Right Worshipful
Master, Are ye all in the S ...., Worshipful Junior Warden?

16. And the Worshipful Junior Warden likewise casting his eyes about
him, answered the Right Worshipful Master, saying, All charged in the
S ...., Right Worshipful Master.

17. Then presently doth it appear what signifyeth these phrases. For
it is one of the secrets of Freemasonry, more precious than fine gold,
that to charge meaneth to fill the glass with the blood of Saint John
the Barleycorn.

18. And further doth it appear that in readiness for the question of
the Right Worshipful Master every brother had filled his glass, ay,
even unto the brim thereof, for every brother knew that as surely as
the Sun riseth in the East to open and enliven the glorious day, so
surely would the Right Worshipful Master rise in the E . . . and address
the almighty and omnipotent question unto their Worshipfuls, the Senior
and the Junior Wardens.

19. Having thus received the assurance of his Worshipful Wardens that
all the brethren were duly and truly charged, the Right Worshipful
Master elevating his own glass (after the manner of the priest of the
holy Catholic church in the service of the Eucharist) smacketh his
lips and saith;

20. Brethren, I give unto you a toast, and the toast that I give unto
you is that of the Karaft, and all the secrets thereof known only to
those true and faithful brothers who have seen the Light that never
was on land or sea.

21. And the brethren stood themselves upon their feet, and raising
their glasses in manner like unto the example of the Right Worshipful
Master, shouted in one voice. The Karaft, and being thirsty with the
shout slackened their drouth with a goodlysized wulliewacht of the

22. Then when they had all drunk, and had all laid down their glasses
which were empty upon the bench, they looked unto the E . . . for a

23. And the Right Worshipful Master as a further mark of his approval,
looketh first unto the W . . ., and then unto the S ...., and saith,
Count, Wardens, Count.

24. Whereat, in a way most wondrous to behold, all the brethren did
clap their hands together and make a joyful noise.

25. First the one hand upon the other and then the other hand upon
the one.

26. After the which did they twirl their little fingers in the air,
and did utter a piercing shriek, the same which those skilled in the
awful and mysterious language of the Karaft say is the word, Hurrah
! repeated thus wise, Hurrahrahrah !

27. Having thus offered up their sacrifice of sentiment unto the Karaft,
the brethren did set their doups down upon their seats, and begin each
to fumble in his pocket for that which would give further refreshment.

28. Now ere many minutes had passed into the silence of Eternity, the
atmosphere was thick with the incense burned at the shrine of My Lady
Nicotine which same alluring female passed freely among the brethren,
kissing each upon the mouth as is her wont:

29. That same Lady which is the only member of the tender sex that
is permitted to sojourn within (yea, also, and defile) the sacred precincts
of the Temple of the Karaft. 

30. Now, in the service of her ladyship there were pipes:

31. The common clay, otherwise the T...... W......; likewise the briar,
and eke the meerschaum; moreover there were the cigar, and its sister
the cheroot, and its nephew the cigarette with its merrybegotten child
the woodbine, surnamed the wild.

32. And all the brethren smoking together praised the pipe, yea praised
they the cigar, the cheroot, and the cigarette. Even from the E . .
. unto the W . . . and from the N .... unto the S .... was there a
cloud of smoke which hid the brethren one from the other even as the
pillar of cloud shielded Moses and the Israelites in the wilderness.

33. Now some there were who smoked not and, casting the eye that watered
upon those who did, and coughing with a loud cough did they say that
the reek was most damnable.

34. Verily, verily, I say unto you they spake the truth.


NOW, when the great handle of the clock had encompassed the face thereof
divers times, (notwithstanding the which the Sun, after the manner
of the secrets of the Karaft, was still in the Meridians) one or two,
who sat in the E . . . with the Right Worshipful Master, said unto
him that the hour was nigh unto twelve.

2. And the Right Worshipful Master rising none too steadily, for his
friend Saint John the Barleycorn played about his legs, spake unto
the brethren saying:

3. Dearly beloved, it is nigh unto High Twelve, that witching hour
when once again the mysterious secrets of a Master Mason may be uttered
among the Brethren of the Karaft.

4. And at the words the Brethren (as had been done by their fathers
at every High Twelve since the building of the Temple by the three
Grand Masters thereof) cried in a thick speech and a loud voice:

5. Close tyle the door.

6. And the door was close tyled.

7. Then spake the Right Worshipful Master, through the mouth of Saint
John the Barleycorn, saying:

8. These are the great and mysterious secrets which I declare unto
you under your sacred promise that you will heal, conceal, and never
improperly reveal them by word, sign, or writing:

9. First, there is the secret of the Masons' Word as it is written
upon the scroll above the door of the Vault at the sign of the C ......
and S....., built by our supreme Grand Master Saint John the Barleycorn:

10. And the word is in four parts: a part for the E . . ., and a part
for the W ..., and a part for the N ...., and a part for the S ....,
as a symbol of the Karaft which is spread to the four quarters of the

11. Now, the first part thereof is SAUT (or, as it is in the vulgar
tongue of the English SALT); and the second part thereof is BEEF; and
the third part thereof is AND; and the fourth part thereof is MUSTARD.

12. And my brethren the whole word is ______?

13. With one voice did they answer him, saying,  SAUTBEEFANDMUSTARD.

14. After a time the Right Worshipful Master spake further saying:

15. Now, when it shall come to pass that any one of you shall be greeted
by him whom you suspect to be a brother;

16. If he shall give unto you the sign of the Knife and Fork by placing
the index finger of his right hand upon the index finger of his left
hand in such wise as he shall make a Saint Andrew's Cross, you shall
say unto him SAUT.

17. And if he be a true brother of the Karaft he shall answer unto
you, saying, BEEF.

18. Being thus assured of the ancient landmarks of the Order you may
adventure further, saying, AND;

19. When, so be that he is well skilled in our ancient mysteries, he
will instantly add unto your speech the word MUSTARD.

20. Thus as it has been written shall it come to pass that each of
you twain shall utter one part of the great omnific word in turn so
completing the word between you but neither of you pronouncing it in
the majesty of its fulness.

21. Whereupon the Brethren answered him saying, Yea, yea, Right Worshipful

22. After a little while the Right Worshipful Master spake a third
time saying:

23. Lest, peradventure, in your travels upon the face of the globe
ye wish to greet a brother in an unfamiliar place, it is meet that
ye should have a password.

24. And this is the password which ye shall have:

25. It shall be like unto the Grand Word in respect that trio parts
thereof shall be identical with two parts of the Grand Word even as
the angles of the equilateral triangle are like one unto another.

26. And the word of the passing shall be formed in thus wise:

27. You shall elide from the Grand Word the first part thereof, which
is SAUT, and the last part thereof which is MUSTARD;

28. And these twain parts being elided the Grand Word shall be deprived
of its seasoning and be without savour and void of sense.

29. Therefore shall ye go to, and to that which is left add the word
GREENS. For is it not written in the Book of the Karonicles of the
Karaft that the password shall be BEEFANDGREENS even from the rising
of the sun unto the going down of the same?

30. And the password shall be as a memorial of your fathers which were
with Moses in the wilderness.

31. When any brother of the Karaft who has but entered at the door
shall ask of you whence canoe the word you shall say unto him thusly:

32. Now, when the children of Israel were sick unto death of the manna
which did fall from the heavens, they took counsel among themselves.

33. And when they were resolved upon that which they would do, two
of the more ruffianly were chosen to lay hold upon Moses when the light
went out and to say unto him, Go to, give us BEEF.

34. And the two ruffians went out as they were commanded, and laid
hold upon Moses, and did say unto him that which had been ordained,
but one of the two being more ruffianly than the other - for he was
a Scottisman: the same which founded Lodge No. 00 Kilswindle - and
remembering the kail of his native land, did cry with a loud voice,

35. Whereupon Moses casting his rod upon their backs, and not upon
the ground as ancient writers tell, thrust the ruffians from him, saying,
By BEEFANDGREENS shall ye be known among men everywhere.

36. And as the word was chosen at that time to mark out those which
yearned for the fleshpots of Egypt so Moses decreed that it should
designate you and all Freemasons throughout the world who claim to
be merry brethren of the Karaft.


NOW when the Right Worshipful Master (aided as some said; hindered
as said others by the offices of Saint John the Barleycorn) had repeated
these the secrets of the Karaft, and the brethren (holding as fast
as Saint John the Barleycorn would allow them to the ancient landmarks
of the Order) had signified that they had received them once again
into their keeping, the Worshipful Senior Warden rose in his place
in the W . . .

2. And, taking in his hand a glass charged unto the brim with the barleybree
he spake unto those which were assembled before him saying:

3. Worthy brethren all, ere the cock craw and the day daw, there remaineth
yet one duty to discharge.

4. I give unto you a toast and the toast I give unto you is that of
the humble representative of our old friend Moses who sitteth in his
throne in the E . . ., the Right Worshipful Master.

5. With one accord all the brethren did spring to their feet, yea did
they spring with much merriness, and clinking of glass and clapping
of the hand, shouting in a loud voice, The Master! The Master!! The

6. Then when the tumult had subsided, the Right Worshipful Master rose
once more in his place in the E . . . and, knocking on the pedestal
in front of him, and looking to the S ...., saith unto the Worshipful
Junior Warden, Worshipful Junior Warden, what is the time?

7. And the Worshipful Junior Warden looking first with the left eye
closed at the two clocks on the wall (for miraculous to relate the
clocks did multiply under the power of Saint John the Barleycorn) and
again with the right eye closed through the little window in the roof
at the two moons in the sky (which moons had multiplied even as the
clocks) answered the Right Worshipful Master, saying unto him, The
sun has passed the zenith.

8. Then saith the Right Worshipful Master unto the Worshipful Junior
Warden, That being so, I command you to call the brethren from refreshment
to labour.

9. And the brethren having been called to labour according to the ancient
manner of the merry masons, the Right Worshipful Master saith unto

10. Brethren, nothing now remains but for us to lock up the secrets
of Freemasonry from the eyes of the curious and this we do by saying,

11. And the brethren answered him in a loud voice, saying, BEEFANDGREENS,

Now these are all the words that are written in the Book of the Holy
Saint Andrew, the patron saint of Scotland, and of the Scottish Karaft.

This file comes courtesy of:

George Helmer
Senior Warden Norwood #90
Grand Lodge of Alberta
SYSOP - Magna Borealis Lux (403) 475-6061
MASNET - 760:35/765
FIDO - 1:342/511