Alain Bernheim: My Approach to Masonic History

As a French citizen who was successively a member of the Grand Orient of France – ‘that irregular body’ –, then of the Grande Loge Nationale Française – a regular one –, then of the United Grand Lodges of Germany and, for the past ten years, of the Swiss Grand Lodge Alpina, Alan presents his approach to Masonic history

The Gloves

Apart from their practical uses to protect the hands from cold and injury, gloves have symbolic connotations. The old illustrations of operative masons at work do not show them wearing gloves. Their use, then, must have been mostly ceremonial, and their adoption in speculative Freemasonic ritual must be explained by their symbolism. The Italian writer Vanni considers that the origin of the symbolism lies not in their use by certain craftsmen or as protection against the cold, but rather in their military use.