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An Exact Representation of Solomon's Temple
ca. 1800
Alexander Anderson
USA: New York, New York
Engraving on paper
overall: 8-1/4"h x 13-1/2"w
Gift of Armen Amerigian
90.19.10.1

An Exact Representation of Solomon's Temple engraving; shows temple with figures in foreground; reads "An exact representation of Solomon's Temple."


The building of King Solomon’s Temple is the narrative backdrop for the first three Masonic degrees. The Bible tells the story of the temple and includes details about the dimensions of the structure and the materials used to build it. In Freemasonry, the temple represents each individual member. Just as building the temple took work over many years, a member’s own growth requires a similar investment. In the 1600s and 1700s, many people, not just Freemasons, were fascinated with the story of the construction of the temple. An engraving like this one likely appealed to Masons and non-Masons alike. For further information, see Hamilton, John D., "Material Culture of American Freemasons," 1994, p. 23-24.