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Marvin Haines

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Everything posted by Marvin Haines

  1. Eric! With regard to your question, I would have to recommend Andrea Palladio's Quatre Libre Dell'Architettura (Four Books of Architecture.) I've read much of it... It can be rather daunting and information-heavy, with all the precise units, modules, dimensions etc. Palladio was a great architect. He was a contemporary of Bacon and singlehandedly fathered a style of Classicism known as Palladianism. His villas are often mislabeled as "baroque," but in terms of design, they are about as far as you can get from Baroque without exiting the Classical realm. Palladianism was briefly taken up in England in the 17th century, but was superseded by Georgian Classicism in the 1700s. Christopher Wren would occasionally use elements of it, but a more quintessentially British Palladian architect would be the 3d Earl of Burlington, whose Masonic-inspired Chiswick House draws heavily on Palladio's Villa Rotunda. Sorry for the ramble. If you want a more approachable work on Classical Design, check out The American Vignola, by William Ware. It outlines the Classical system in much simpler terms than Quatre Libre, while somehow still delivering the same essential information. It's a remarkable book, also heavily illustrated, and I'd recommend it to anyone interested in Classical design. As for Elizabethan architecture, I can't say I'm an expert on it, nor would I know of any book that might help you learn more about it... I can say that it was the first post-Roman period in English architecture to make use of the Classical System. I don't know if Quatre Libre is available in PDF format - I assume it is. I'm going for a walk now, but I'll look after.
  2. My name is Marvin Haines. I'm sure everyone here knows me already, but I decided to make this post anyway - just for the proverbial hell of it. I'm (currently) 17 years old. I was 15 when I first joined the B'Hive, and I've learned a lot in the past few years. My interest in Bacon/Shakespeare began a little over three years ago. It was Sarah Winchester - perhaps the most interesting (and misunderstood) Baconian of the last century - who really got me started down this rabbit hole. Despite never having visited Llanada Villa, her notorious House, I had been fascinated by it since the third grade. (I've always loved historic American architecture, and Queen Anne style has long been a favorite. The House is, in my humble opinion, the greatest example of this style in the country.) When I first heard about Mrs. Winchester, I fully accepted the sensationalized legend that has become synonymous with her name. My 8-year-old brain was desperately confused. I loved "spooky" stories, and I ate the legend up. I drew the house from every angle, fascinated with its bizarre design - in particular, its 7-story appearance before the 1906 earthquake muddled it up. I was (and still am) very well-versed in the High and Late Victorian styles, so drawing it was a simple enough task. At some point, maybe around 6th grade, I started to realize how inaccurate the "Folklore" was. The more I thought, the more I began to suspect that something was missing from the age-old story. But without context, I had no idea what it was. I discovered Richard Allan Wagner's superb article, "The Truth About Sarah Winchester," early in 9th grade, not long after my infamous 3-month hiatus in the mental health system, (during which I was diagnosed with autism and extreme OCD). The article, if you haven't read it, is a stroke of mind-boggling genius. I had so many questions: Who was this Francis Bacon character? Why was Mrs. Winchester so obsessed with him? Is there anyone else who believes this theory? I just went with it, and pretty soon, I was convinced. I've written and illustrated a pamphlet, which I hope will be a companion to Wagner's work. I've cleared up some of his apparent mistakes and completely analyzed the House from an architectural (as well as symbolic) perspective, with particular emphasis on its pre-1906 configuration. A little over a year ago, I dropped out of High School after nearly being expelled. (Believe me, that's a long and painful story.) I spend most of my time writing, playing the piano, dreaming up architectural designs, and pursuing esoteric knowledge. I'm soon to traditionally publish my first novel, The Life of Arti Usher. I'm also a member of the Oregon Repertory Singers Youth Choir, and I sing regularly. Ok. Enough yapping. Here are some things I like: Sir Francis Bacon/Shakespeare Sarah Winchester/Llanada Villa Bow ties (usually bright colors) - I wear them almost every day High and Late Victorian architecture (Second Empire, Queen Anne, etc.) Palladian architecture Gothic architecture Warm scarves and leather gloves Goggles (worn as a fashion accessory) Fish & Chips Sushi Suits, sweater-vests, etc. Ragtime Edward Gorey Everything related to Edward Gorey Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events, and All the Wrong Questions The Shining (first adaptation) Fantastic Mr. Fox (the only adaptation) Dr. Strangelove; or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb ...and many more things that I won't bother to list!
  3. Holy GOD!! I'd heard "Nightmare Song" before, but without the context of Lolanthe, I had no idea that the character performing it was Lord Chancellor! Synchronicity or what?
  4. I am the very model of a staunch and strict Baconian. (My passion for the subject is admittedly sectarian) I’ve made a lot of enemies, but still I’m very proud to know The name of every character, from Rosencrantz to Romeo I have a strong conviction which I know is true in every way That good old Francis Bacon wrote the plays I’m known to quote all day – I’ll also argue that he wrote the sonnets which I quote all night – Just say you’re a Stratfordian – I’ll show you how to pick a fight! Yes, there’s no greater crime, no greater literary heresy, Than being a proponent of that dastardly conspiracy – I’m sure you know the one I mean, as Caesar knew what Brutus meant, For there’s no shame in loathing the Stratfordian Establishment!
  5. Let's do a thought experiment. I want you to imagine a large room. In the room are the following people: A furniture salesman A yacht attorney A CEO A rabbi A typesetter A visual artist A Baconian Scholar An architect I know, it's a diverse lot, and even more unlikely that they would all find themselves in the same room at the same time - unless, of course, that room is in a courthouse.... or a prison. But this scenario must be taken with a grain of salt - it's a thought experiment, after all. Let's continue. So, we've established our who and our where. Now it's time to find out exactly what the heck is going on. Imagine this: The door opens, and a stranger enters the room. He looks around franticly, and shouts, "The Eaotin Shrdlu are coming!" Got that? Ok. Here's the rub - or rather, the question: Which person begins to laugh uncontrollably? _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Note: If you know the answer, please don't spoil it for everyone!
  6. For anyone interested, here is a link to my manuscript: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1DNQxRUgeNlmhTRIlsEi4gA4NVtRoxtYAUg-mbb5SAfE/edit
  7. Here is a list of facts: - I'm 17 years old and currently unenrolled from high school. - When I was in the sixth grade, I began writing a novel. I remember the thing started out as a simple pastime, but my pre-adolescent brain had bitten off more than it could chew. - Now, five years and 56,000 words later, The Life of Arti Usher is complete. - The manuscript of TLOAU has gone through many drafts and changes. I've produced dozens of distinctive illustrations in the style of Edward Gorey and an eerie new cover design that will blow your socks off. - Initially, much of the narrative was centered on a group of Freemasons in the fictional town of Weameworth. After much thought and consideration, I removed all direct references to Masonry. However, a basic knowledge of the Craft remains essential to understanding the book's message and symbolism. - There are several slyly placed Baconian references in the text. - Late in the game, I got my hands on the most amazing editor - or rather, she got her hands on me. Ms. Cheryl Carter has helped enormously with the process, never afraid to damn the worst of my writing to eternal hellfire if needed. - I'm still writing query letters. I hope to have it published by the end of next year. Fingers crossed. - Contact me if interested in becoming a beta reader. That's all for now! And Rob: feel free to strike this post down if it isn't Baconian enough!
  8. Congratulations, Kate!! I am thrilled to hear that you've finally published TSWOAA in paperback! Just recently, I tried to access the eBook, but the website appears to be down. Is this intentional? Ten minutes ago, I was sitting at the table with my lovely parents, eating pizza and debating the true purpose of the Giza Pyramids. My parents were not easily convinced that the interior of the Great Pyramid mirrors the human brain, and I wanted to show them an image from your book. (Also, I'd been meaning to reread some sections, particularly about the Washington Monument.) One more question: Is your book traditionally published? If so, what is the name of the publishing house? Thanks!
  9. Oh, and what a coincidence it is that my choir director's birthday also falls on the 22nd!
  10. I'm meeting with my editor for TLOAU in 8 minutes, but after that I have a surprise - something to honor both Bacon and Sarah Winchester on this most important day!
  11. Fantastic, Rob! Has this particular device gone all these years unnoticed? I woke up today thinking, This is the DAY!! There's got to be something hidden in Rob's pyramid! And I saw this and smiled.
  12. It's been well over two years since I joined the Forum. In that time, I have made new friends, explored fascinating topics, and engaged in meaningful discourse. Some of you might think you know me well, and you probably do. You know that I like to wear suits. You know that I've written a novel. You may even know that I play ragtime on the piano. Needless to say, I've learned a lot about you. I know Kate has studied brain anatomy. I know that Rob is a mathematician. I know that DirkStaff is a Buddhist. And yet, never in that time have I revealed to any of you what is perhaps my darkest and most dangerous secret. Ready to hear it? Drumroll, please... _________________________________________________________________________________ MY FAVORITE AUTHOR IS NOT SIR FRANCIS BACON!!! I know, it's sinful! But before you cast me into outer darkness, before you damn me to eternal hellfire and agony in the flaming pit of unforgiveness, I humbly ask that you hear my case. As much as I admire Bacon's work, the honor of Marvin Haines' Favorite Author has to go to a man named... William Shakespeare - JUST KIDDING!!! No, in fact that honor goes to Edward Gorey, everyone's favorite author of nonsense, mayhem, and yes, furniture pornography. If you haven't already memorized every line of his weird, disturbing, and slyly elusive little picture books for grownups and troubled teenagers, I highly recommend that you do so - those able to call up Gorey references on demand and recite his verses as if they were proverbs in the most unlikely of settings are held in high regard among the initiated. Sadly, the man died a Stratfordian... or so I thought. Recently, while perusing one of at least 12 Facebook pages dedicated to Mr. Gorey's work, I found this: No one is perfect. Edward Gorey certainly wasn't... at least until this poster saw the light of day!
  13. Hi people! This thread is a long and very interesting one! I read most of the first page and became nearly braindead. I'll try to dig into the rest later today, but I would also like to extend a welcome to Dirkstaff! RC is indeed a prankster - but in the best possible way. He seemingly enjoys stirring up controversy on these forums by loudly disagreeing with L-o-T and others on nearly every subject. In the end, however, his comments always lead to productive and helpful discourse. Ultimately, he pushes us to rethink our opinions - which is never a bad thing! I'll comment more thoroughly today and tomorrow, but for now, Merry Boxing Day, and a happy early 2024!
  14. I was just rereading the topic "Greenhouse at Llanada" and came across this comment, which I had made nearly a year ago: I have to comment that the term "Winchester Mystery House" was never known to Sarah. She, for reasons which I have explained in my pamphlet "Llanada Villa: The House on the Plain" preferred a different name. "WMH" was first introduced by Harry Houdini when he visited the House in the 1920's. (Houdini is unquestionably to blame for the spooky legend. Before he came along, there were versions of the story, but none ever mentioned hauntings or spirits. He himself was a spiritualist, but interestingly, also a Freemason - although there's no evidence that he was ever a Baconian. I find it unlikely that he ever made the connection between Sarah and Bacon.) Well, it turns out that his reason for the name "Winchester Mystery House" is very different than I once thought... "Mystery" is a word that has changed dramatically in meaning since it was first used. (My good friend Kate Cassidy of the B'hive has confirmed this in her book, The Secret Work of an Age.) For centuries, the word, which is now most commonly defined in terms of ambiguity or uncertainty, referred to the Mystery Schools - institutions of esoteric learning and spiritual enlightenment - such as Masonry or Rosicrucianism. As we have previously discussed, the Winchester MYSTERY House is exactly that! And it only helps that Houdini was a Mason and a Rosicrucian. Check out this article to learn why he was in fact a skeptic of spiritualism: https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/for-harry-houdini-seances-and-spiritualism-were-just-an-illusion-180978944/
  15. I write to you, my dearest Will, To tell you that I’m very ill – And cannot finish sonnet ten – (I try and try and fail again) So, won’t you make My Lordship’s day And write the rest – I’ll even pay Excuse the tone, I’m rather shaken, Very Truly Yours, Lord Bacon Lordship! Lordship! i rite sonet I rite Willy Shakspur sonet I kan rite and even spel As im sure that you kan tel I kan speek withowt a stamer I is also good at gramer Make sir happy, get some pay Do the wurk and make yur day [To be continued]
  16. The man with the white beard is John Dee. The man with the hat is Sir Francis himself.
  17. HEY!!! I respect you, but please don't associate the KKK with "Make America Great Again." I support Donald Trump and DESPISE the KKK. They are a sick organization and have no relation to self-respecting centrists/conservatives like myself. They didn't come from Freemasonry - Albert Pike and several other prominent Clansmen were also Masons, but that in no way connects the two societies. I am not an Latter-Day Saint, but I think it's unfair to call Joseph Smith a con man. I don't think that we can ever say for certain what was going through his head all those years ago. So-called "Zionism" gives many good people comfort, and I find it my duty to defend them. Thank you for listening. M.
  18. I want to apologize for the off-topic subject matter of this post. I do, however, think that it is relevant to the Forum, even if not strictly Baconian. FOR YEARS, I’ve been quietly fascinated with the LDS, or Mormon faith. You’ve all seen their missionaries and their blue leather book subtitled “Another Testament of Jesus Christ,” and I’m sure you can sing along to some of their musical numbers. (“Hello! I am Elder Marvin – this book will change your life!”) It was not, however, until recently, that I discovered their Masonic and possibly Baconian history. (Ok, the Baconian part might be a stretch.) Curiously, the unofficial symbol of the Church is the Beehive! So yes… I was quietly fascinated with the LDS Church. The reason for this? The “secrecy” surrounding its Temples, and their unique and often magnificent architecture. But my fascination did not fully take off until I came across this image: The image in question is a digital rendering – a rendering made by the interior design firm responsible for the restoration and renovation of the famous Salt Lake Temple – the Church’s signature edifice. Although the room, with its superb Beaux Arts detailing, may appear historic at first glance, it is in fact being built as of this post. At this point, you may be wondering why an image of a room – albeit a beautiful one – would prove so vital to my understanding of Freemasonry, the LDS faith, and Wisdom traditions in general. The answer lies in the image itself. To truly understand a space, one must have accurate knowledge of: a) The people who built/own it b) Its original/current function c) What that function meant/means to them The rendering depicts a Sealing Room, one of the most important and sacred spaces in the entire religion – for it is here that couples enter marriage. Historically, LDS weddings have generated controversy, because, according to doctrine, they must take place inside a Temple. To enter a Temple after its dedication, one must possess a Temple recommendation. Of course, that excludes friends and family outside of the faith, as well as others who have failed to meet the requirements. Everything I have said so far is in direct relation to what this space – the Sealing Room – means to Latter-Day Saints. I am not a Latter-Day Saint, nor do I ever intend to be one. So, what does the Sealing Room mean to me? It means everything because it changed everything. AFTER STARING at the image for several minutes, I scrolled down the page and read everything I just told you about LDS weddings. The picture, though, remained in my mind long after I had seen it. And that was because I had seen it before. Well, sort of… This is a Lodge Room – a room in NYC’s largest Masonic Temple. Notice the superb Beaux Arts detailing. Notice the two doors. Notice the altar in the center. Notice the arrangement of the furnishings around the altar. Look familiar? I don’t know if this is technically a Blue Lodge Room. It does, however, appear to be set up for Blue Lodge Masonry. If we compare the two spaces, there are several noticeable differences. Perhaps the most obvious is the color scheme and architectural finishes. Others include: a) The three lights around the altar (absent in the Sealing Room) b) The replacement of individual chairs with long benches in the Lodge c) The raised dais at the Eastern end of the Lodge (three steps, of course,) supporting the Worshipful Master’s chair Despite these differences, both spaces undeniably share a layout. The question, then, arises: Is there an unseen connection between the LDS faith and Freemasonry? MY RESEARCH confirmed that Joseph Smith, the founder of the LDS Church was, in fact, a Freemason. Although little is known about his involvement in Masonic activities, multiple sources state that he was initiated several years after the inception of the Church – not before. I’m not sure if the Sealing ceremony was, in its current form, introduced before or after Smith’s initiation into the Fraternity. It would, however, appear, from early photographs of LDS Temples, that the first Sealing Rooms were much smaller than current designs, with only a few chairs and the altar at the front of the space rather than in its center. These early rooms bore little resemblance to the Blue Lodge, and Smith likely never foresaw their modern counterparts. So, what is the connection? It is my belief that Joseph Smith was not the only Latter-Day Saint of the period – or even of today – with ties to Masonry. A video produced by the church states that LDS doctrine does not prohibit members from becoming Masons. It acknowledges the fact of Smith’s membership and even goes on to claim that he received revelation about the new church during his initiation. Upon further research, I discovered that even more striking parallels to Masonry can be found in the Temple Endowment Ceremony. The ceremony was introduced in Kirtland, Ohio – the town where Smith’s followers had settled – sometime after 1820. Kirtland was the site of the very first Temple, and the only one dedicated by Smith himself. The Kirtland Temple was designed and built after Smith’s own revelation. It is a simple, two-story affair, constructed in the federal style, with unusual gothic windows. This building was very, very different from modern LDS Temples. It consisted of two large meeting rooms, each occupying a floor, and space in the basement for the Endowment Ceremony. I assume that marriages were also performed here. (Baptism for the Dead, the only other Temple ceremony besides marriage and the Endowment, was not introduced until after the Church had moved from Kirtland to Nauvoo, Illinois.) THE PURPOSE of the Endowment, according to the Church, is to instruct faithful members on the history of the world, (of course, through an LDS lens,) starting with Creation and ending in the “restoration of the Gospel.” Its secondary purpose is to teach these members the secret Passwords, Signs, and Tokens needed to enter the afterlife. (More on these soon.) The Ceremony is also a coming-of-age tradition. Initially, only men over 50 were allowed to participate; in 1980, the age limit was lowered to 18 and women were granted admission. As with much of the “work” performed in Temples, the Endowment can be observed multiple times by any individual; members are encouraged to return again and again on behalf of deceased ancestors who had no opportunity to participate themselves. If you already see the parallels to Masonry, it is interesting to note that this ceremony was introduced over ten years before Smith became a Mason. This becomes even more striking when it is discovered that Smith rose to the third degree after only a day in the Fraternity. To me, it seems there are only two possibilities: a) that Smith was influenced by Masonic teachings even before his initiation b) that the historical timeline is incorrect The Endowment was originally performed with live actors and real sets, but due to the inefficiency of putting on a drama multiple times daily for a limited audience, the Church has created a film presentation that encompasses the entire ceremony. In its first iteration, the Ceremony was conducted in a single room, divided by cloth partitions into six sections. Patrons would enter the first section, dressed in ceremonial white clothing (including aprons and possibly sashes) and be instructed on the creation of the world. Once the performers had finished their delivery, the partition was pulled aside, and everyone entered the second section. This went on until the final section, when the last partition was pulled aside to reveal a veil symbolic of death. Each patron would approach the veil, offer the token, and be admitted into the final section – a space representing the “Celestial Kingdom.” Out of respect for the Church and its members, as well as for any Masons viewing, I will not describe the token. But many sources state that it closely resembles that of the Master Mason. After being chased out of Kirtland by an “anti-Mormon mob,” the Saints settled in Nauvoo, Illinois. It was there that they began building their second Temple. Smith did not live to see it completed; he was lynched by another “anti-Mormon mob” while preaching in another town. Brigham Young, his second-in-command, assumed the role of Church President, and finished the Nauvoo Temple, only to have it burnt to the ground by – you guessed it – an “anti-Mormon mob.” In Nauvoo, the ceremony of Baptism for the Dead was introduced. The font in which it is performed is a large replica of the Brazen Sea – the bronze basin of King Solomon’s Temple. It’s a beautiful piece, supported by twelve oxen which represent the twelve Tribes of Israel, the twelve Zodiac, etc. To this day, every new Temple built by the Church has at least one Baptistry containing a font of this type. AFTER MIGRATING to Utah, the LDS began building Temples with individual rooms dedicated to the Endowment, each containing elaborate murals depicting a different scene in the drama. The rooms were built in succession, each a few steps higher than the previous, representing the spiritual progression to enlightenment. The Temples in Salt Lake City, Manti, and Logan are three fine examples of this arrangement. (Unfortunately, the Logan Temple was gutted and rebuilt in the 1970s.) Currently, the Church builds Temples with unconnected, unadorned Endowment rooms. It’s certainly more efficient that way, but with all honesty, I like the tradition of separate spaces with murals and live acting better – probably because it reminds me of the Scottish Rite dramas. SO, WHAT conclusions can we draw? Is the LDS Church a form of Masonry with a Christian twist? Certainly, many members whom I know and respect in my community would firmly disagree. I don’t claim to have an answer, and I intentionally leave this post open-ended to encourage discussion. This may only be the second time that the LDS have been mentioned on the Forum, and I believe it is a topic worth our insight.
  19. Speaking of Cathedrals... I had an interesting written exchange with Kate last May after I had finished reading her book. I was scrolling through my messages today and saw this: Hi, Kate! I just finished Secret Work, and it was a truly fascinating read! All that astronomical and neuroanatomy stuff was kind of dense, but I think I have a decent comprehension of it. More detailed comments and questions will come soon, but here are a few thoughts to tide you over: 1) I know that in Classical architecture one basic rule of design is that every façade must have an even number of uprights (supports, columns, posts, piers, etc.) and an odd number of voids (windows, bays, doors, openings, arches, etc.) For instance, there are four basic "temple" portico layouts: tetrastyle, hexastyle, octastyle, and decastyle. A tetrastyle portico has four columns and three voids, and so on and so forth. (Decastyle is considered the maximum number for architectural harmony.) It is interesting to note that there is no "duostyle," as that is called an Aedicule, or, in Masonry, Boaz and Jachin. I find it interesting that odd numbers are considered masculine, and even numbers feminine. You need both to have a harmonic façade. 2) I've mentioned before that I believe the First Degree tracing board is modeled after the Kabbalistic Tree of Life, and that the middle pillar, the androgenous/harmonic one, or "middle path" represents the initiate. To take that a step further, we have the great French cathedrals with their two towers, (boaz, Jachin) three stories, (symbolic of the three degrees) three portals, (same symbolism) and rose window (representing god and the rose croix). I see triptychs everywhere - on the Mormon Temple, for instance. You briefly touch on the triptych, but it would be interesting to explore it in further depth.
  20. I remember once, in the fifth grade, coming across a story of the title Mesmeric Revelation. It is one of Poe's lesser-known works, and it details a hypnosis session in which the operator (the person performing the hypnotic induction) discusses the meanings of life, the universe, and everything with his subject. I don't remember it that well - aside from the fact that it, like Poe's other works, was remarkably dense - even more so to my 10-year-old mind. The story got me quite interested in the subject of hypnotism/mesmerism, and I decided to learn more about it. I quickly found that there's a lot of bull crap on the internet about this topic. The way I had seen hypnosis portrayed in popular media was incredibly far from the truth. I think a lot of people believe (erroneously, of course) that hypnosis is a form of mind-control. Stage hypnotists (performers) make their money by convincing us of that! I soon discovered that hypnosis subjects, rather than becoming mindless slaves to their operators, actually possess an entirely free will. That begged the question: What, then, is hypnosis, if it's not mind-control? Well... it's sort of an altered state of consciousness, where thoughts flow more freely, the mind is relaxed, and, yes, suggestions are more welcome. I wondered, upon discovering this, what practical uses it could have. For example, its effects seem to mirror those of certain narcotics - the only difference being that hypnosis is not in the least bit harmful or addictive. Why then, should it not be used recreationally in place of these drugs? Also, it can help reduce stress, anxiety, and even compulsions. Why, I wondered, was hypnosis rarely practiced professionally? There seemed no good reason other than the public's fear and grim fascination with it - a fascination fed by the performers and the media. Two years ago, a friend and I were talking, and we decided we would try it. Naturally, because I knew more about the subject, I asked if I could be the operator. He agreed. We found a quiet place, I gave him a pair of dark glasses to wear (which admittedly made him look adorable), and I tried to replicate what I had learned from an intensive study of Wikipedia. I was careful to avoid using the cliches - phrases like "look into my eyes" and "you are getting sleepy," as I knew they would be more distracting than anything else. I also didn't stare directly into his eyes. I didn't dangle a pendant or make any sort of passes. I spoke gently but naturally. I told him to picture himself at the top of a long staircase descending into a pleasantly dark void. I invited him to clear his mind and focus only on the sound of his footfalls on the velvet carpet. He went down until I could sense his breathing had slowed. Then I told him to pause. I had him picture himself in his favorite outfit, feeling cool and confident, surrounded by his friends and family. I asked him if he was in a trance. He said he didn't know but it felt good. He looked so happy and peaceful, sitting there in his stylish specs. Needless to say, all that interest brought about by Mesmeric Revelation was a success.
  21. Poe was no stranger to hoaxes - he even dabbled in several famous ones, including the notorious "Balloon Hoax" of 1844. I'll let you look that one up. I hereby change my position that Poe could not have possibly accepted the Baconian thesis. Don't get me wrong - I'm not saying that he embraced it or even believed in it, but his love of hoaxes coupled with the possibility of him being a student of the esoteric (which it seems we now are entertaining), there is some likelihood that he would have made the connection.
  23. IN DAYS of yore, (January 29th, 1845, to be exact,) a certain epic author with an even more epic moustache sold a poem to the magazine WIley and Putnam. That poem - which some say he was paid as little as $7 for - is, of course, The Raven. "But wait!" you say, "That has nothing to do with Sir Francis Bacon!" Just hang on for a little longer. I suppose I could summarize the entire work and then subject you to my analysis of it, but I assume every one of you has taken at least one high school literature class in which The Raven was discussed. I will, however list some facts that may be relevant to Baconians: - According to Wikipedia, in an early draft of the poem, the famous bird was not a raven, but an owl. I find this remarkably interesting, because in the final version, the raven sits "upon a bust of Pallas." Pallas was the title of the Greek goddess Athena - Bacon's muse and the symbolic "Spear-Shaker." Athena was the patron goddess of owls and also the goddess of wisdom - apparently the source of the myth that owls are wise. - The Raven taps at a shutter to attract the narrator's attention. Although the number of taps is not specified, I liken this behavior to the "three knocks" of speculative Masonry (Ask and it will be answered to you, Seek and ye will find, Knock and it shall be opened to you.) The main difference here is that if such symbolism is inferred, the narrator should really be doing the knocking, as he is the truth-seeker. - Although Poe was likely never a Mason, let alone a Baconian, he does make reference to speculative Masonry in at least one of his stories - The Cask of Amontillado. He has even been known to include quotes from both Bacon and "William Shakespeare" as epigraphs to his works. The chilling story The Pit and the Pendulum takes place during the Spanish Inquisition - a time when many Masons were persecuted by the Catholic church and quite possibly subjected to the kind of torture described in this work. I will apologize for posting something slightly off-topic this time. I just thought it was too good not to share!
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