Appellations by any other name…

Here is another word used in Masonic ritual, and used not quite the same way outside our Lodges. Appellations.

The worldly man hears this word and immediately thinks of different wine regions around the world.  There are certain locales noted for producing a local grape variety which can become synonymous with the region.  But what does this have to with a lecture in a Masonic ritual?  Nothing. 

Masonic ritual traces its origin to an earlier age; when certain words held different meanings than are commonly encountered today.  Such it is with the word ‘appellations’.  In an earlier time this meant the naming of an object.  The word ‘appellations’ comes to English from the French language, where even now the verb ‘appeler’ means ‘to call’ something by a name.  Thus in Masonic ritual, it is noted that a specific object is known to Masons by one name, and a similar object is known by those working in other trades by some other names. 

Learning this more ancient meaning allows a Mason to expand his lexicon, and add esoteric meanings to his vocabulary.

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