Entered Apprentice Degree Work

As an Entered Apprentice, whence come you?
From the Lodge of the Holy Saints John of Jerusalem.
What come you here to do?
To learn to subdue my passions and improve myself in Masonry.
Then I presume you are a Mason?
I am so taken and accepted among Brothers and Fellows.
What makes you a Mason?
My obligation.
How do you know yourself to be a Mason?
By having often been tried, never denied, and willing to be tried again.
How shall I know you to be a Mason?
By a certain sign,a word, a token, and the perfect points of my entrance.
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What are the signs?
Right angles, horizontals, and perpendiculars.
Give me a sign.
(gives the due guard)
What is that called?
The due guard of an Entered Apprentice.
Has that an allusion?
It has, to the position in which my hands were placed when I took the obligation.
Give me another sign.
(gives the penalty sign)
What is that called?
The sign of an Entered Apprentice.
Has that an allusion?
It has, to the penalty of my obligation.
What is a token?
A certain friendly and Brotherly grip, whereby one Mason may know another in darkness as well as light.
Give me a token.
(gives the Entered Apprentices grip)
I hele (hail).
I conceal.
What do you conceal?
All the secrets of Masons and Masonry, to which this token alludes.
What is this?
A grip.
A grip of what?
Of an Entered Apprentice.
Has it a name?
It has.
Give it to me.
I did not receive it, neither can I so impart it.
How will you dispose of it?
I will letter or syllable with you, preferring to letter and reserving the right to begin.
Letter it and begin.
Nay, you begin.
Nay, my brother. The word lies with you. You must begin.
(Beginning with the Candidate, the word is lettered and halved by the Candidate and Coach, and then given in full by the Candidate.)
Where were you made a Mason?
In a lawfully constituted Lodge of Masons.
Where were you first prepared to be a Mason?
In my heart.
Where next?
In a room adjacent to a just and lawfully constituted Lodge of Masons.
How were you prepared?
By being divested of all metals, neither naked nor clothed, barefoot nor shod, hoodwinked, and a cable-tow once about my neck; in which condition I was led to the door of the Lodge by a friend, whom I later found to be a Brother.
Being hoodwinked, how did you know it to be a door?
By first meeting with resistance, and then gaining admission.
How gained you admission?
By three distinct knocks.
What was said to you from within?
Who comes here?
Your answer?
A poor blind candidate, who has long wandered in Masonic darkness, and now desires to be brought from darkness to light, and receive a part of the rights, lights, and benefits of this worshipful Lodge, erected to God and dedicated to the Holy Saints John, as many a Brother and fellow has done who has gone this way before him.
What were you then asked?
If this was an act of my own free will and accord; if I was duly and truly prepared, worthy, and well qualified and properly vouched for; all of which being answered in the affirmative, I was then asked by what further right or benefit I expected to gain admission.
Your answer?
By being a man, of lawful age, and well recommended.
What followed?
I was directed to wait with patience until the Master was informed of my request, and his answer returned.
What answer did he return?
Let him enter and be received in due and ancient form.
How were you received?
On the point of a sharp instrument at my naked left breast, which was to teach me that this was a torture to my flesh, so it would be to my heart and conscience should I ever reveal any of the secrets of Masonry unlawfully.
Where were you then conducted?
To the center of the lodge, where I was caused to kneel and attend prayer
After attending prayer, what were you then asked?
In whom do you put your trust.
Your answer?
In God.
What followed?
My trust being in God, my faith was well founded; I was taken by the right hand, and ordered to arise, follow my guide, and fear no danger.
Where did you follow your guide?
Once about the altar, following the apparent course of the Sun, to the Junior Warden in the South, the Senior Warden in the West, and the Master in the East, where the same questions were asked, and like answers returned, as at the door.
How did the Master dispose of you?
He ordered me to be re-conducted to the Senior Warden in the West, who taught me to approach the East, advancing by one upright, regular step, my feet forming the first angle of an oblong Square, my body erect to the Master in the East.
What did the Master then make you?
A Mason.
How?
In due form.
What is that due form?
Kneeling at the alter on my naked left knee, my naked left hand supporting the Holy Bible, Square, and Compasses, my right hand resting thereon, body erect to the Master in the East; which due form I took the obligation of an Entered Apprentice.
Repeat it.
I, Matthew Paul Chandler, of my own free will and accord, in the presence of Almighty God and this worshipful Lodge, erected to God, and dedicated to the Holy Saints John of Jerusalem, do hereby and hereon most solemnly and sincerely promise and swear that I will always here (hail), forever conceal, and never reveal any of the secret arts, parts, or points of the hidden mysteries of Masonry which may have been heretofore, or shall be at this time, or at any future period, communicated to me as such, to any person or persons whomever, except it be a true and lawful Brother Mason, or within the body of a just and lawfully constituted Lodge of Mason; nor unto humor them until by strict trial, due examination, or lawful information, I shall have found him or them as lawfully entitled to the same as I am myself.
I further more promise and swear that I will not write, print, paint, stamp, stain, cut, carve, hew, mark, etch or engrave them on anything moveable or immoveable capable of receiving the least impression of a sign, word syllable, letter, or character, whereby they might become legible or intelligible to any person under the canopy of heaven, and the secrets of Masonry be thereby obtained through my unworthiness.
All this I most solemnly and sincerely promise and swear, with a firm and steadfast resolution to keep and preform the same, without the least equivocation, mental reservation, or secret self evasion whatsoever; binding myself under no less penalty that that of having my throat cut from ear to ear, my tongue torn out by its roots, and with my body buried in the rough sands of the sea at low water mark, where the tide ebbs and flows twice in twenty-four hours, should I in the least, knowingly or wittingly violate or transgress this my Entered Apprentice’s obligation. So help me, God, and keep me steadfast.
After taking the obligation, what were you then asked?
What I most desired.
Your answer?
Light.
Did you receive it?
I did.
How?
By the order of the Master and the assistance of the Brethren.
On being brought to light, what did you first discover?
The Three Great Lights of Masonry, by the aid of the representatives of the three lesser lights.
What are the Three Great Lights of Masonry?
The Holy Bible, Square, and Compasses.
How are they Masonically explained?
The Holy Bible is given us to be the rule and guide of our faith and practice; the Square teaches us to square our actions; and the Compasses teaches us to circumscribe our desires and keep our passions within due to bounds with all mankind, but more especially with a Brother Mason.
What are the Three Lesser Lights?
The Sun, Moon, and Master of the Lodge.
How are they Masonically explained?
As the Sun opens and rules the day, and the Moon governs the night, so should the Master, with equally regularity and precision, open, rule and govern his Lodge.
How are they represented?
By three burning tapers, placed in a triangular position on the floor of the Lodge.
What did you then discover?
The Master approaching me from the East, on the step, under the due guard and penal sign of an Entered Apprentice, who, in token of his Brotherly love and friendship presented me with his right hand, and with it the word and grip of an Entered Apprentice, and bade me arise and salute the Wardens as such.
After saluting the Warden, what did you then discover?
The master approaching me from the East a second time, who presented me with the lambskin or white leather apron, and informed me that it was an emblem of innocence and the badge of a Mason;more ancient than the Golden Fleece or Roman Eagle; more honorable than the Star and Garter, or any other order that could be conferred upon me at this time, or any future period, by king, prince, potentate, or any other person, except he be Mason; and which he hoped I would wear with equal pleasure to yourself and honor to the Fraternity; and bade me carry it to the Senior Warden in the Wast; who would teach me how to wear it as an Entered Apprentice.
How should an Entered Apprentice wear his apron?
With the bib turned up.
After being taught how to wear your apron as an Entered Apprentice, where were you then conducted?
To the Master in theEast, who informed me that agreeable to an ancient custom in all regular and well governed Lodges, it was then necessary that I should be requested to make a deposit of some metallic kind, not for its intrinsic worth or value, but that it might be laid up among the records in the archives of the Lodge as a memorial that I was then made a Mason; but upon strict examination, I found myself destitute.
Where did the Master then send you?
To the North East corner, my feet forming the first angle of an oblong Square, my body erect to the Master in the East; who was pleased to say that I then stood as a just and upright man and Mason, and gave it to me strictly in charge ever to walk and act as such before God and man.
What did the Master then present you with?
The tools of an Entered Apprentice, and taught me their uses.
What are the working tools of an Entered Apprentice?
The twenty-four inch gauge and the common gavel.
How are they Masonically explained?
The twenty-four inch gauge is an instrument made use of by operative Masons to measure and lay out their work; but we as Free and Accepted Masons, are taught to make use of it for the more noble and glorious purpose of dividing our time. It, being divided into twenty-four equal parts, is emblematical of the twenty-four hours of the day, which we are taught to divide in to three equal parts, whereby we find eight hours for the service of God and aid to a distressed worthy Brother, eight hours for our usual vocation, and eight hours for refreshment and sleep.
The common gavel is an instrument made use of by operative Masons to break off the corners of rough stone, the better to fit them for the builder’s use; but we, as Free and Accepted Masons, are taught to make use of it for the more noble and glorious purpose of divesting our minds and consciences of all the vices and superfluities of life, thereby fitting our bodies, as living stones, for that spiritual building, that house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.
How did the Master then dispose of you?
He ordered I be re-conducted to the place whence I came, there be reinvested with that which I had been divested, and return to the Lodge for further instructions.