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Secret Societies

Secret Societies

Their Influence and Power from Antiquity to the Present Day

An overview of how esoteric brotherhoods have shaped history

• Examines the secret chronology and clandestine causes of seminal world events

• Shows how secret societies feed into one another, and how they have worked together

For thousands of years secret societies--guardians of ancient esoteric wisdom--have exercised a strong and often crucial influence on the destiny of nations. Though largely ignored by orthodox historians, the Freemasons, Knights Templar, and Rosicrucians affected the course of the French and American Revolutions as well as the overthrow of the medieval feudal order. Inevitably, the true ideals and esoteric practices of these societies have, at times, been perverted by self-serving individuals. The Nazis and the Bolsheviks, British security forces, the founding fathers of America, and the Vatican have all justified their actions--for good or for ill--by claiming the mystic ideals of secret societies.

Michael Howard explores these connections, tracing their effects in politics and statecraft from the time of ancient Egypt up to the present. He sheds light on the influence of secret societies on governments and in the lives of many well-known figures, including Frederick the Great, John Dee, Francis Bacon, Benjamin Franklin, Comte de Cagliostro, Helena Blavatsky, Rasputin, and Woodrow Wilson. He contends that the recent formation of the European Union was directed by an umbrella group of secret societies and reveals that though secret societies have been persecuted throughout history, they have survived and continue to operate powerfully in world affairs today.
Choose a format:
  • Destiny Books | 
  • 272 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781594772030 | 
  • December 2007
List Price $16.95
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Read an Excerpt

from Chapter 3

The Rosicrucian Connection


The overt influence of the Masonic-Illuminist tradition in the French Revolution was notable. In revolutionary literature of the period, the Illuminist symbol of the eye in the triangle appears on book covers, and the red Phrygian cap, borrowed from the mysteries of Mithras and the initiation rites of the Illuminati, was adopted as the headgear of the citizens’ militia. The Masonic tenets of equality, liberty, and fraternity became the rallying cry of the mob, while the red banner, a Masonic symbol of universal love, was openly carried in the streets by the revolutionaries. It is said... see more

About the Author

Michael Howard

Michael Howard has studied secret societies since 1964 and is an expert on Anglo-Saxon runes. He is the author of more than 20 books, including Traditional Folk Remedies and The Wisdom of the Runes. He lives in Devon, England.

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