Saturday, March 15, 2008

Masonic School? No. Masonic King? Yes.

Yesterday, I added a little curiosity entry about a school I came across in Stockholm. The northern side of the school was emblazoned with what appeared to be several Masonic symbols. I wondered what it was, so I did a little digging, and here's what I found.

First, here are references to the sources:

Symbols of Growth: The Decoration of Swedish Schools 1890-1920 from Article 4, Inferno Volume VIII, 2003 1

THE SWEDISH CONSTITUTION, Nordic Esotericism in Baroque Splendour by W.Bro Alex G. Davidson

The school pictured is the Adolf Fredrick Folkskola. The school and the symbols are mentioned in the 'Decoration' article:

"The towering north edifice is emblazoned with blue and gold shields representing school subjects, each pierced by a beam of light from the sun and burning torch motif. The theoretical (older) subjects orbit around the sun, whilst the practical (newer) subjects emanate from the torch. The torch was a subtle play on the name of this district of Stockholm, Blosset, which translates as the torch or flare."

What I took to be Masonic symbols are the practical or newer subject motifs mentioned above. There's still a striking similarity however. And as it turns out it may have been intentional. From the 'Swedish Constitution' article:

"Freemasonry grew considerably after 1753, when Carl Fredrik Scheffer was installed as the first Swedish Grand Master. In the same year King Adolf Fredrik assumed 'overlordship' of all lodges in Sweden, and thus became the first 'High Protector' of Freemasonry."

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