Monthly Archives: December 2008

The Cornerstone Always Goes in the Northeast

Of all the symbols in the Sibly engraving, none are more obscure than the grouping of five elements amidst the Native man.

Anchor, barrel, tobacco, ?, Native American, cornerstone

Anchor, barrel, tobacco, ?, Native American, cornerstone

If we see these as Masonic symbols, the picture becomes more clear.  Firstly, it has been my contention that this scene depicts a foundational event for the Federal Government, and the cube at the rightmost is a cornerstone, waiting to be laid.  Cubes and squares are ubiquitous in Masonic symbolry, representing geometry, and ceremonially a link to the cornerstone at the Temple of Solomon, which measured as a square sacred cubit the Masons think is 18″ by 18″.  There is a stone of these proportions on display in the Scottish Rite headquarters in Washington DC of that size, though not all cornerstones are that size.

In any event, if we assume that the scene is looking westward, the cornerstone falls in the correct place, that of the northwest  corner, pointing to where the Sun rises in the summertime.  Masonry is by and large a solar cult, as is Christianity and Judaism, and many other religious movements in history.  The Sun is, after all, darn important.

All of the figures in the engraving are pointing to that central place where the first stone is to be laid, but it is yet unlaid.  At the left of the Native man’s constellation of symbols is the anchor, and this anchor too is at an angle of 39°, paralleling Justita’s sword, and also pointing north, showing us the future latitude of the Federal City (now called Washington DC).


Not only does the 39° repeat itself, but it is found a third time via the anchor’s perpendicular cross which is at the oblique angle of 51°:


This reinforcement of the geometrical scheme leaves no doubt as to the meaning of this engraving’s lower half.  Anchors in Masonic symbolism are tied to the notion of safe harbor and the calm after the storm, and though it can be a stand-alone symbol, it is often featured with either a sea-nymph (more flood symbolism) or an Ark, as in the one Noah used in his mythical journey through the flood.

The Ark and the Anchor are emblems of a well grounded hope and a well spent life.  They are emblematical of the divine Ark which triumphantly bears us over the tempestuous sea of troubles; and that Anchor which shall safely moor us in a peaceful harbour, where the wicked cease from troubling and the weary are at rest.” – George Oliver, “Signs and Symbols”, page 69.

Masonic dogma includes an antediluvian narrative that speaks to the biblical account, but also the lost utopia of Atlantis, and the “new world” was thought to be the discovery of Atlantis by some Masonic elements.  Flood mythology is common in ancient cultures, and the Christian story is now known to be a re-telling of the Epic of Gilgamesh from the Mesopotamians, but in the time of Sibly, such matters were unknown.  In this engraving, the anchor is now being used to symbolize the ship of state finding a place to berth, after the torment of the wars fought to conquer the new world for Freemasonry.

Next to the anchor is a barrel, or a cask, the contents of which are unknown, but if we assume a Masonic rite, it might contain wine or oil, the two liquids used in such ceremonies.  More on this element later.

The man is holding two things, one being tobacco leaves, perhaps, and the other unidentifiable.  If we assume a cornerstone ceremony, then the tobacco could be used in lieu of the corn or wheat.  The man is prostrate, paying homage to the event, and to the new rulers of the land.

Next, a look at the remaining geometry of the lower half, which features yet more surprises.

– Ed K


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Of Washington DC, Sibly’s Justitia, and the 39°

My intention in the last post was to introduce the contention that a deliberate and meaningful geometry was embedded in Sibly’s “American Independence” engraving.  Similar schemes are known to exist in other works of art from well before in history, and continue to this day.  Though I have no direct evidence that Sibly’s design was indeed geometric, it seems rather obvious that such a scheme exists, and so we should learn what it is telling us.

As revealed in the last post, Justitia is pointing her sword to the ground at an angle of 39°.  This is highly significant gesture if indeed this is the mythologized version of the founding of Washington DC, as it reveals that DC’s symbolic architecture and design are rooted in a dogma that was known to the Freemasons.


39 is a tarot number, being half the deck of 78.  Justice is card #11, and sometimes referred to as the “G” card when compared to the Hebrew alphabet.

It is a fact that Washington DC is a 39° kinda town.  It sits quite near the earth’s 39th parallel, with the Capitol building located at 38°53′ N, and 77°01′ W.

The street plan of the city features roads extending out from the Capitol in different directions.  Pennsylvania Avenue and  New York Avenue are at an angle of 39°, and both are at an angle of 19.5° to the parallel of latitude.


The statue that sits atop the Capitol Building’s dome, the “Statue of Freedom”, is 19.5 (39/2) feet tall.


Washington National Cathedral is also on an angle to the east/west parallel, and it is also at the value of 19.5°, pointing in the same directions as New York Avenue.



Justitia is always depicted with both the sword and scales; the sword is always pointing downward to indicate a stance of non-combat and peace, and it is clever of Sibly to show her with the sword extended at this angle, standing to the north (if we assume that the engraving is looking ot the west), and facing east.

Washington is to the south, gesturing to the “Federal Union” book (The Constitution) on the ground, and pointing another sword to the ground.  Behind him is a building in Greek motif, up on a hill, representing not only the Western cultural tradition, but that this new capital would be established on a philosophical basis rather than monarchial – the dream of the Masoninc Order.  (It is not an accident that Washington DC’s main architecture is done in Greek styling.)

Sibly, ever the Mason, is telling us that “American Independence” was not complete until the Federal Union had a Federal City.  Even though the chart in the sky is for July 4, 1776, the new Federal City was not the seat of government until 1800, some 83 years after the formation of the Grand Lodge of England in 1717.  In fact, there was a big push in 1800 to move the government from Philadelphia to Washington in time for the 4th of July, and though the summer months that year saw little in the way of legislation, the new Federal City was mostly in place as the true locale of power.

It should be noted that in 1800 AD, there was an exact return of the Sun/Jupiter eclipse that sits atop the  chart for Modern Freemasonry @ 13° Cancer; this dual return, called a “synod” in astronomy, is one of the most precise of all the planets, varying by only about a second of arc every return.  The Babylonians made note of this, as had the builders of the Washington National Cathedral, who spaced precisely 83 years between the cornerstone ceremony inn 1908 and the dedication in 1991.


– Ed K

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Where are they?

The question arises, is the scene of the Sibly engraving a specific place, or is it just some generalized anywhere?  Are they in New York, or Philadelphia?

One night when I was looking at the graphic, and after realizing there are about seven really bizarre things about it, I wondered if there was anything to the placements, like with the swords being pointed in certain directions.

Again, the graphic:


Notice that Washington is pointing towards the ground with his sword.  With his left hand, he is presenting the Federal Union.  Justice is also pointing at the child.

At the top, the chart is in the old square format; a line drawn from the MC line in the chart, which is nearly perpendicular, to the bottom and through the ground to the intersections of the swords looks like this:


Yes, lo and behold, there’s a 33° angle and Washington is standing in it.  He, being a noted Freemason, is a Master, and also the personification of the geometry, the “33”.


Next, the angle from the MC line to the lady of Justice is 51°, a strange number, but it’s the reciprocal of 39°, the latitude of Washington DC.


A closer look:


Thus, the setting is most likely the bare land where Washington DC will stand, and that’s probably Georgetown in the background.  Washington is there, proclaiming the ground sacred and just, ready for the great work.

The Native American is also proof that this is Washington DC, but because of what he’s doing — holding corn and oil, and behind him is the cube, the cornerstone!  This is the foundation of the New Masonic Capital, the utopia of this venerable society.

– Ed

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That Mercury is off the chart!

There are two things about Sibly’s Mercury that are of note.  The first is that the glyph is not actually in the chart, but dangling off, as if being held in by the degree/minute numbers to the right:

Closeup of the dangling Mercury and the wrong degree and minute of arc

Closeup of the dangling Mercury and the wrong degree and minute of arc

Clearly the entire glyph is floating in space.  This may be because Sibly ran out of room in the fifth house because he had to list four planets.  If so, then we’ll leave it to sloppy artisanship.

But, another peciliar thing emerges: the degree and minute are incorrect!  All other planets are listed to within a few arcminutes of accuracy, but Merc here is off by 3 whole degrees!  Merc’s actual position on that date at noon was 24 degrees and 18 minutes of arc in Cancer, but Sibly has it listed as 21 degrees and 21 minutes.  Could it be that Sibly’s ephemeris was that bad?  Doubtful.  Taken together, the dangling Merc and the wrong position suggest that this is NOT an accident or slop, but instead a hint to those who may be studying closely.

The graphic, regardless of Merc, has already shown itslef to be a puzzle, and so we should consider Merc to be another goading to look deeper at the event called “America Independence.”  Was there another day in the Independence drama that was of importance?  Does this Merc belong to another entity altogether?  The answer is, perhaps both!

Before we could go futher, though,  we needed to settle on which degree of Cancer was actually being stated on the engraving.  Is it 21 or 22 degrees?  It’s hard to tell when we look closely, and maybe that too is deliberate.  After much comtemplation, we have settled on 21 degrees, for numerous reasons.

In astrology, Mercury “rules” over communication, and a signature falls in that category.  Signatures are the empowering act that commences law in our culture.  It is a little-known fact that an official signing ceremony was held on August 2 of 1776, and this date is when the majority of signatures were affixed on the finished document from the printer.  What was signed on the 4th of July (and is now missing!) was the draft that was handed to the Declaration’s printer – John Dunlap.  From that, Dunlap made a broadside, but it remained unsigned!

True, the measure was passed on July 2, with only the New York delegate not present, and some small revisions were made afterwards until it was handed off to the printer, and to the newspapers no the night of the fourth.  The declaration was read aloud in Philadelphia on July 8th.  It was decided that Franklin would go to France with the document in hand to ask for assistance.  And then finally the signing ceremony, on a day when Mercury is at 21°21′ Cancer, having turned direct in motion.

It should be noted here that August 2 is a special calendar date in some realms, for it is the contemporary observance of the beginning of “fall” that was observed in pagan Europe in pre-Christian times — Lughnasa.  It was one of four “cross-quarter” seasonal observances, the others being Imbolc (February 2), Beltane (May 1), and Samhain (November 1).  These dates approximated the observance of the mid-point between equinoxes and solstices.  Western culture still observes these dates in some form, with Halloween and Groundhog Day being the most obvious in the USA, and Europe fully embracing May 1 as Labor Day, and England having a bank holiday in the first week of May.  Of all the cross-quarter dates, August 2 is the most unobvious, and perhaps that’s why the deliberate symbolic scheduling of this date was overlooked by historians.

To be sure, other highly important national events happened on these special dates:  The Supreme Court first sat on February 2 of 1790.   The Federal Government began governing on May 1, 1789, the day after George Washington was given the oath of office.  “Mission Accomplished” was declared by Bush in 2003 on May 1.  The first H-Bomb was detonated on November 1, 1953.

To be sure, these ancient pagan festival dates preceeded the Roman calendar that was promulgated by the Empire in pagan realms, and as such were not timed strictly to the solar cycle, but rather the soli-lunar cycle.  The assimilation of the pagan holidays into the Roman calendar required a fixed date, and thus the beginnings of Roman months were used to honor the lunar aspect of the pagan observance.

The second day of August is also numerically significant, as the 33rd day of the second half of the year, opposite the 33rd day of the new year, February 2nd.  (May 1 is the 121st day of the year, the square root of 11; it is the opposite date of 11/1.)

But enough of this calendar numerology for now, what other important days in the history of humanity might have seen Mercury at 21°21′ Cancer?

– Ed

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That 19°49′ Aquarius Ascendant

Much of what Sibly wrote seems archaic by today’s standards, and much of the material is obsolete.  This impairs somewhat our present-day reading of the text, but one clue emerged a few months ago.

First, the engraving:

Sibly's 1804 engraving showing the delivery of an astrology chart to George Washington

Sibly's engraving that appears in "An Illustration of the Celestial Science of Astrology"

The chart, in square format common to the day, lists the seven classic planets, the lunar node, uses Placidus houses, and even has a date (July 4 1776) and time (10:10 PM) for us.  Simple enough on the surface, but looking closer, we see that the elements of time and place do not match, and the chart reveals itself as a cryptogram.


The chart is drawn for the latitude of London, but the planets are calculated for Noon at Philadelphia, which would equal 5 PM at London, which is not the 10:10 PM time, nor the time of that day that the chart’s ascendant of “19°49′ Aquarius” is rising.

What gives?  Is he just sloppy?  Or, is he trying to do the work of four charts in one?  Or maybe more?  Consider that Sibly is one of the few astrologers from the milieu of the late 18th Century that saw the events from the locale of England and left their thoughts on paper.  He saw England as the center of the political universe, and perhaps it was at that time.  He states his bias on page 1049, and believes Englad gave birth to the United States, and therefore his locale of choice is London.

Then, Sibly goes through a brief explanation of “ingress” charts for the spring equinox and summer solstice that preceeded the Declaration of Independence – a technique that is still used in contemporary astrology.  He them employs (on page 1053) an obsolete technique for progressing the ingress charts at the rate of a day for every week.  The reason he gives for using this particular rate of progression is that the two significators of the chart – Mars and Saturn – are in “common signs, which denote weeks.”

In other words, becuase July 4, 1776, fell 14 days after the summer solstice, the progressed angles of the solstice chart would notch up two days of motion.  The ascendant of the summer solstice over London in that year, according to Sibly’s calculations, is 16°19′ Aquarius.  The time of this event is 10:40 PM LMT, June 20, 1776, London.  Thus, 10:40 PM LMT of June 22 yields an ascendant of 19°49′ Aquarius, and the angles of the chart in the engraving.

It is understandable that this day-for-a-week technique had fallen under the radar of modern astrologers, but hopefully this will put to rest one confusing aspect of the so-called “Sibly Chart.”

Now that we know where it comes from, can we assume that it is highly unlikely Sibly was telling us that the actual timing of the signing of the Declaration of Independence had anything to do with 19°49′ Aquarius on the ascendant at London or Philadelphia.


Could it be that astrologers in Phili were using the same technique as Sibly, and timing events with this technique?

There is some historical evidence of consequence for this time of day on the 4th being important to the document, but this raises a larger question of the timing of events in July of 1776.  July 4th was really not considered “independence day” until some time after the fact, but we’ll get to much of that in posts to come.

– Ed K

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Sibly’s Dangling Mercury

Once again, I find myself deconstructing Sibly.  No, not “Sibley.”  Well, yes, “Sibley,” but we all know where that misspelling started and we’ll never know all the folks who carried the mistake forward like a virus.  Well, anyway.  Here I am, again, with some news about Sibly.

Big news, too.

But to begin, we have to go to Engraving “#53” from Sibly’s “Celestial Science …” (across from page 1048 in my Kessinger reprint) with George Washington, Justice, a baby, a Native American, and the “hand of Fame” giving an astrology chart to the world.

It’s quite an amazing chart, right there for anyone to jot down and interpret. That is, if you can understand it, and to do that one must understand its purpose for being there in the first place, and then decipher the message.

What is the “Federal Union” in the eyes of a person like Ebenezer Sibly? Where does this new government come from, and who does it serve?  As we’ll see, those are not easy things to lay out simply, but symbols can carry a thousand words.

Take, for instance, Mercury.  Merc’s glyph is a complicated little devil for a planet so often overlooked in the litereature.  Mercury is a trickly little planet, hiding often on its convoluted path that is never more than 27 degrees distant from the center of the Sun.

Mercury was obsessed over by the Chaldeans, to the point where a precise measure of its cycle – within minutes of modern accurate mesurement – was achieved.  John Dee seemed fond of it. And Sibly knew something else about it of such importance that he left us a trail.

The trail begins with the graphical situation of Mercury in the aforesaid engraving.  Looking closely, Mercury is not on the “scroll,” but dangling off the edge!  The significance of this depends on whether it is a deliberate clue or simply a flawed engraving, but that becomes more clear when we realize that Mercury’s position listed in degrees is a full 3 degrees away from its actual positon, while every other planet is listed witin arc-minutes of the actual measure.

Could it be that Sibly wants us to notice?  If so, what is he saying?  Could it be that this Mercury on the chart for “America Indepdence” is the Mercury of a whole different chart?  If so, how in the world would we find it?

The search for this answer led us here at Emersion down unexpected paths; some were fruitful, some were not, but the accumulation of knowledge may lead you to question how you feel about how the world operates and who might be in charge.


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