Email Print Abraham Lincoln was not an especially well-read man, but what he read he retained, thought about and frequently used.
The address to the Immediate Past Master and the depiction on his jewel refer to the 47Th proposition of Euclid. As the Master serves in his position, he becomes more complete, and therefore the 47th problem of Euclid is dedicated on his jewel when he leaves office. When giving this address on the occasion of my installation as Master of Millaa Millaa Lodge I thought back to my studies in electrical engineering and realized the importance that this piece of mathematics had in electrical theory.
I then decided to ask some my Masonic peers what they saw as the significance of this to masonry. What role did Pythagoras play? I suppose I was not too surprised to find out that little if anything was known by those I asked.
It was because of this that I have decided to put together a paper dealing with this subject and try to put some life into a subject that most people shun, and to also look at the characters mentioned in this discourse, ie Euclid and Pythagoras.
The first degree tracing board lecture makes many references to geometry and the implements to practice geometry. The use of symbolic geometry occurs in most other Masonic orders over and beyond the craft degrees.
The importance placed on learning in our degree work can take us back a great many years to a time when knowledge was neither so great nor as diversified as now. William Preston, the eminent Masonic student, scholar, writer, who lived and wrote in the latter part of the eighteenth century, conceived the idea of making the degrees in general, and the Fellowcraft degree in particular, a liberal education!
A 'liberal education' in those days was comprised within what we still call, after Preston, the 'seven liberal arts and sciences. Indeed, mathematics were looked upon as being something not meant for the common men, as being of small use in the world, save for engineers and designers and measurers of land.
But Preston, if his lectures are no longer the real 'liberal education' which he planned, and which, in the form of his lectures modified by Webb and somewhat tinkered with by various authorities and near authorities who at times have kept the husk and let the kernel escape!
For we, may now, justly and honourably, take 'geometry' to mean not only the science of measurement of surface and area and the calculation of angles and distances, but to mean all measurement.
And to study measurement, means to study science, for all science is but measurement, and by that measurement, the deduction of laws and the unravelling of the secrets of nature. This study of the seven liberal arts and sciences is made mention of on numerous occasions in our ritual, what of these?
Below is a quote that is years old. Let another art be that which is the angel of the conceptions of the soul, and which is called rhetoric; another, that which is the nurse and tutor of the juvenile mind, and which is denominated poetry; another that which is the leader of the nature of numbers, and which is called arithmetic; and another that which is the teacher of computation, and is called logistic.
Let geometry, also, and music follow, who are the associates of philosophy and conscious of her arcana, and to each of which she distributes a portion of her labour.
Bromwell wrote in his massive tome Restorations of Masonic Geometry and Symbolry that: The 47Th proposition of the first book of Euclid. Or we could frame it as the sum of the square of the horizontal and the square of the perpendicular equals the square of the hypotenuse.
The drawing below illustrates this. Chou Pei The oldest existing Chinese texts containing formal mathematical theories were produced during the Han period. C and contains various modern mathematical principles such as working with fractions using a common denominator, and proofs of many geometrical theories.
The text contains an accurate process of division for finding out the square root of numbers. In fact, the Chou Pei presents the oldest known proof of the right-angle triangle theory in the hsuan-thu diagram.
Regardless, it is attributed to Pythagoras and two hundred years later Euclid compiled his "Elements of Mathematics" where this particular 47Th proposition is found in Book One.
This theorem has been called the root of all geometry and the cornerstone of mathematics. The practical applications alone are worthy of the high esteem that Masonry affords it. And this is the interpretation of the lecture that is most considered when masons speak of it but the meaning of this hieroglyphical emblem does not stop there.
The emblem we are usually presented is the 3,4,5 right triangle in this fashion: The vertical line is of 3 units, the horizontal is of 4 units, and the hypotenuse is of 5 units. Not only is our attention called to this geometrical figure in the Master Mason degree, it is also prominent in the Scottish Rite in the 20th Degree - Master of the Symbolic Lodge and in the 25th Degree - Knight of the Brazen Serpent.
Geometry treats of the powers and properties of magnitudes in general, where length, breath, and thickness, are considered, from a point to a line, from a line to a superficies surface of a body and from a superficies to a solid. By this science, the architect is enabled to construct his plans, and execute his designs; the general to arrange his soldiers; the engineer to mark out ground for encampments; the geographer to give us the dimensions of the World, and all things within, to delineate the extent of seas, and specify the divisions of empires, kingdoms and provinces; by it, also, the astronomer is enabled to make his observations, and to fix the duration of times and seasons, years and cycles.
In fine, geometry is the foundation of architecture, and the root of mathematics. Many readers may feel like they have been returned to Geometry class.
A simple illustration will probably refresh our memories: The proposition is especially important in architecture. This line is given the value of 3.
The builder then marks another point, say point B and draws a line from it at a right angle to line A, and it is given the value of 4. The distance between line A and B is then measured, and if the distance between A and B is 5, then the room is squared.A Time-line for the History of Mathematics (Many of the early dates are approximates) This work is under constant revision, so come back later.
Please report any errors to me at [email protected] Euclid was a great Greek mathematician. Although little is known about his early and personal life, he went on to contribute greatly in the field of mathematics and came to known as the ‘Father of Geometry’, Euclid is known to have taught mathematics in Ancient Egypt during the reign of Ptolemy regardbouddhiste.com Of Birth: Alexandria.
Euclid was a great mathematician and often called the father of geometry.
Learn more about Euclid and how some of our math concepts came about and how influential they have become. János Bolyai was a Hungarian mathematician who spent most of his life in a little-known backwater of the Hapsburg Empire, in the wilds of the Transylvanian mountains of modern-day Romania, far from the mainstream mathematical communities of Germany, France and England.
Euclid, Greek Eukleides, (born c. bce, Alexandria, Egypt), the most prominent mathematician of Greco-Roman antiquity, best known for his treatise on geometry, the Elements.
Geometry: Geometry, the branch of mathematics concerned with the shape of individual objects, spatial relationships among various objects, and the properties of surrounding space. It is one of the oldest branches of mathematics, having arisen in response to such practical problems as those found in.