by R.E. Kretz
The origins of modern freemasonry are, of course, rooted in the distant past and shrouded by the mists of time, appearing as a mystery wrapped in an enigma. In Act 2 Scene 7 of Shakespeare’s play As You Like It, Jaques says: “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players. They have their exits and their entrances, and one man in his time plays many parts.” It would seem that there is as much vigorous debate about the origins of modern freemasonry as there is about who is to be credited for Willam Shakespeare’s writings. When we peruse Shakespeare’s writings and the rubric of freemasonry, we find several of the same players involved, having their exits and entrances, and one man, Sir Francis Bacon, in his time playing many parts.