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Masonic Gavel
1901
Unidentified
Wood
overall: 3 1/2 in x 12 1/2 in x 2 1/2 in
Special Projects Fund, Supreme Council, 33º, Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite, Northern Masonic Jurisdiction, USA
2008.002.3

Brown carved Masonic gavel. Turned handle. Head of gavel is carved to resemble a temple with columns at the four corners. On one side, between the columns, there is an open book with a square and compass on one page. On the other side there is a closed book and a sword. The front shows an archway with a door and two steps. Above the door is a G. Additional symbols are carved around the top edge, above the columns. On one side is a gavel and two gauges. The other side has a gauge, a plumb, a level and a square. The back shows a trowel, a maul and a past master's symbol of square, compass and quadrant with a sun in the center. On top a series of letters have been carved out, "B.J.W. / [illeg].G.M.M.S.C / W.M.J.L / 1901." Along the sides is a border composed of nails, with a larger screw at each corner. Crudely carved into the bottom are the words, "I Lov / e / You."


Like many organizations, Freemasons use a gavel to bring order to lodge meetings. In Masonic rituals, the gavel also symbolizes the stonemason’s hammer used to break rough edges off of stone, which represents the work Freemasons do to divest their hearts of vice. This elaborately carved gavel seems to have been a gift in 1901 to an unknown lodge officer.



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