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Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia: A Comprehensive Guide to Freemasonry
If you are a Freemason or a scholar who wants to learn more about the history, philosophy and practice of Freemasonry, you need a reliable and authoritative source of information. One of the best sources available is Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia, a comprehensive guide to all aspects of Freemasonry written by one of the most respected Masonic scholars of all time. In this article, you will discover what Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia is, how it was created, what it covers, why it is valuable, and how you can access it online or offline.
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The Author: Henry Wilson Coil
The man behind Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia was Henry Wilson Coil (1885-1974), a prominent American lawyer, author, editor, lecturer and researcher on Freemasonry. He was born in Oregon and graduated from Stanford University with a degree in law. He practiced law in California for over 50 years and served as a judge and a district attorney. He was also a veteran of World War I and World War II, reaching the rank of colonel in the US Army.
Coil was initiated into Freemasonry in 1909 and became a member of several Masonic bodies, including the Scottish Rite, the York Rite, the Shrine, the Royal Order of Scotland, and the Societas Rosicruciana in Civitatibus Foederatis. He was also a founding member and president of the Philalethes Society, an international association of Masonic scholars and researchers. He received many honors and awards for his Masonic service and scholarship, such as the Albert Gallatin Mackey Medal for Excellence in Masonic Research, the Henry Price Medal from the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts, and the 33rd degree of the Scottish Rite.
Coil was a prolific writer on Freemasonry, publishing over 20 books and hundreds of articles on various Masonic topics. Some of his most notable works include A Comprehensive View of Freemasonry, Masonic Questions and Answers, The Masonic Ring, Freemasonry Through Six Centuries, and of course, Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia. He was also the editor of several Masonic journals, such as The Builder, The New Age, and The Philalethes. He devoted his life to studying and promoting Freemasonry as a system of morality, education and brotherhood.
The History: How Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia Came to Be
The First Edition (1961)
Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia was the result of over 30 years of research and writing by Coil. He started working on it in the late 1920s, inspired by the need for a modern and comprehensive reference work on Freemasonry that would replace the outdated and inaccurate encyclopedias of Albert Mackey and Albert Pike. He wanted to create an encyclopedia that would cover not only the history and symbolism of Freemasonry, but also its philosophy, jurisprudence, organization, rituals, customs, landmarks, legends, biographies, literature, art, architecture, music, education, charity, social impact, and relations with other fraternal orders and religions.
Coil spent countless hours collecting, analyzing, verifying and organizing information from various sources, such as books, journals, manuscripts, archives, libraries, museums, lodges, grand lodges, and personal correspondence. He also traveled extensively to visit different countries and regions where Freemasonry was active or had a significant influence. He consulted with many experts and authorities on Freemasonry from different disciplines and perspectives. He wrote each article himself, using clear and concise language that would appeal to both Masons and non-Masons. He also included cross-references, illustrations, quotations, appendices, indexes and a bibliography to enhance the usefulness of his encyclopedia.
```html The Second Edition (1996)
After Coil's death in 1974, his encyclopedia continued to be in demand and widely used by Masons and scholars. However, as time passed, some of the information in the encyclopedia became outdated or incomplete, especially in relation to the developments and changes that occurred in Freemasonry worldwide. Therefore, a second edition of the encyclopedia was needed to update and expand the original work.
The task of revising and editing the second edition was entrusted to two eminent Masonic scholars and friends of Coil: William Moseley Brown (1896-1992) and William L. Cummings (1914-2001). Brown was a professor of history at Washington and Lee University and a past grand master of Virginia. He was also a prolific writer on Masonic history and philosophy, publishing books such as The History of Freemasonry in Virginia, The American Masonic Federation, and The Meaning of Masonry. Cummings was a lawyer, a judge, and a past grand master of Nevada. He was also an active member and officer of several Masonic bodies and organizations, such as the Philalethes Society, the Masonic Service Association, and the George Washington Masonic National Memorial Association.
Brown and Cummings worked on the second edition for over 20 years, consulting with many other Masonic experts and authorities from different countries and jurisdictions. They added over 250 new articles and revised over 500 existing ones. They also updated the references and bibliography, added new illustrations and appendices, and improved the indexes. They preserved Coil's original style and tone, but also added their own insights and opinions where appropriate. They completed their work in 1996 and published it through Macoy Publishing & Masonic Supply Co., with the assistance of Harold Van Buren Voorhis as an additional editor. The second edition consisted of one volume with over 700 pages and more than 1750 articles. It was dedicated to the memory of Coil and his wife.
The Content: What Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia Covers
The Scope: Over 1750 Articles on Various Aspects of Freemasonry
```html The Style: Clear, Concise and Accurate Information
Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia is written in a clear, concise and accurate style that makes it easy to read and understand. Coil avoids using obscure or technical terms that might confuse or alienate the reader. He also avoids using biased or dogmatic language that might offend or mislead the reader. He explains the meaning and origin of Masonic words and symbols, and provides examples and illustrations to clarify his points. He also distinguishes between facts and opinions, and between historical evidence and speculative theories. He acknowledges the diversity and complexity of Freemasonry, and does not claim to have the final or definitive word on any subject. He invites the reader to form his own judgment and to consult other sources for further information.
The Sources: Extensive References and Bibliography
Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia is based on extensive research and documentation from various sources, both primary and secondary. Coil cites his sources in footnotes or parentheses within the text, and provides a full bibliography at the end of the book. He also includes cross-references to other articles within the encyclopedia that are related or relevant to the topic at hand. He uses a wide range of sources, such as books, journals, manuscripts, archives, libraries, museums, lodges, grand lodges, and personal correspondence. He draws from sources in different languages, such as English, French, German, Latin, Greek, Hebrew, Arabic, Sanskrit, and Chinese. He also consults sources from different disciplines and perspectives, such as history, philosophy, religion, science, art, literature, law, politics, sociology, psychology, anthropology, and folklore.
The Value: Why Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia Is Essential for Masons and Scholars
The Relevance: Up to Date Data on Freemasonry Worldwide
Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia is relevant for Masons and scholars who want to learn about the current state and trends of Freemasonry worldwide. The encyclopedia provides up to date data on the history, organization, membership, activities, achievements, challenges, and prospects of Freemasonry in different regions and jurisdictions. It also covers the relations and interactions of Freemasonry with other fraternal orders, religions, governments, societies, cultures, and movements. It reflects the diversity and dynamism of Freemasonry as a global phenomenon that adapts to changing times and circumstances.
The Authority: Recognized by Leading Masonic Organizations and Experts
```html and experts as a valuable and authoritative source of information on Freemasonry. The encyclopedia has been endorsed by various grand lodges and Masonic bodies, such as the Grand Lodge of England, the Grand Lodge of Scotland, the Grand Lodge of Ireland, the Grand Lodge of France, the Grand Orient of France, the United Grand Lodges of Germany, the Grand Lodge of Israel, the Grand Lodge of India, the Grand Lodge of Japan, the Grand Lodge of New Zealand, the Grand Lodge of South Africa, the Grand Lodge of Canada in Ontario, the Grand Lodge of New York, the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania, the Grand Lodge of California, the Grand Lodge of Texas, and many others. It has also been praised by many Masonic scholars and authors, such as Albert G. Mackey, Robert Freke Gould, Joseph Fort Newton, Arthur Edward Waite, Albert Pike, Henry Sadler, Dudley Wright, William Wynn Westcott, John Hamill, Robert L.D. Cooper, Margaret C. Jacob, David Stevenson, and many others.
The Influence: Inspiring Further Research and Education on Freemasonry
Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia is influential for Masons and scholars who want to pursue further research and education on Freemasonry. The encyclopedia provides a solid foundation and a stimulating guide for exploring the various aspects and dimensions of Freemasonry. It also raises questions and challenges that invite more inquiry and investigation. It encourages critical thinking and independent judgment among its readers. It also inspires creativity and innovation among its writers. Many Masonic books and articles have been written or influenced by Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia. Many Masonic lectures and courses have been based or derived from Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia. Many Masonic websites and blogs have referenced or quoted Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia. Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia has become a standard reference work and a classic masterpiece of Masonic literature.
The Availability: How to Access Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia Online or Offline
The Print Version: Hardcover or Paperback Editions
Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia is available in print version as a hardcover or paperback edition. You can purchase a physical copy of the encyclopedia from various online or offline sources. Some of the online sources include Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble.com, AbeBooks.com, Alibris.com, BookFinder.com, eBay.com, and Macoy.com. Some of the offline sources include Masonic bookstores, libraries, lodges, grand lodges, museums, and personal collections. The price of a physical copy of the encyclopedia may vary depending on the edition, condition, availability, and demand.
The Digital Version: PDF or Epub Formats
```html The Online Version: Web Archive or Open Library Platforms
Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia is also available in online version as a web archive or open library platform. You can access a searchable or browsable version of the encyclopedia from various online sources. Some of the online sources include Archive.org, OpenLibrary.org, Google Books, HathiTrust.org, and MasonicShop.com. You can use these sources to view, read, search, download, or print the encyclopedia on your computer or device. You can also use these sources to find other related books and articles on Freemasonry.
Conclusion: Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia as a Masterpiece of Masonic Literature
In conclusion, Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia is a masterpiece of Masonic literature that provides a comprehensive guide to Freemasonry. It was written by Henry Wilson Coil, one of the most respected Masonic scholars of all time, and revised by William Moseley Brown and William L. Cummings, two eminent Masonic scholars and friends of Coil. It covers over 1750 articles on various aspects of Freemasonry, such as its history, philosophy, symbolism, organization, practice, influence, and relations with other subjects. It is written in a clear, concise and accurate style that makes it easy to read and understand. It is based on extensive research and documentation from various sources, both primary and secondary. It is relevant for Masons and scholars who want to learn about the current state and trends of Freemasonry worldwide. It is recognized by leading Masonic organizations and experts as a valuable and authoritative source of information on Freemasonry. It is influential for Masons and scholars who want to pursue further research and education on Freemasonry. It is available in print version as a hardcover or paperback edition, in digital version as a PDF or Epub format, and in online version as a web archive or open library platform.
If you are interested in Freemasonry or want to deepen your knowledge and understanding of it, you should definitely get a copy of Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia. It will enrich your mind and enlighten your soul with the wisdom and beauty of Freemasonry. It will also inspire you to become a better Mason and a better person.
Here are some frequently asked questions about Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia:
Q: Who can read Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia?
A: Anyone who is interested in Freemasonry can read Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia. However, some articles may contain information that is confidential or restricted to certain degrees or orders of Freemasonry. Therefore, you should exercise discretion and respect when reading such articles.
Q: How can I get a copy of Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia?
A: You can get a copy of Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia from various online or offline sources. You can purchase a physical copy from online retailers like Amazon.com or offline bookstores like Macoy Publishing & Masonic Supply Co. You can download a free or paid electronic copy from online platforms like Archive.org or OpenLibrary.org. You can access a searchable or browsable copy from online platforms like Google Books or HathiTrust.org.
Q: How can I use Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia for my research?
A: You can use Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia for your research by finding the articles that are relevant to your topic or question. You can also use the cross-references, illustrations, quotations, appendices, indexes and bibliography to find more information and sources on your topic or question. You can also compare and contrast the information and opinions in Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia with other books and articles on Freemasonry.
Q: How can I cite Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia in my paper?
A: You can cite Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia in your paper by following the citation style that is required by your instructor or institution. For example, if you are using the APA style, you can cite it as follows:
Coil, H.W., Brown, W.M., & Cummings, W.L. (Eds.). (1996). Coil's masonic encyclopedia. Macoy Pub. & Masonic Supply Co.
Q: How can I contribute to Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia?
A: You can contribute to Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia by providing feedback, suggestions, corrections, or additions to the editors or publishers of the encyclopedia. You can also contribute by writing your own articles or books on Freemasonry and sharing them with the Masonic community and the general public.