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The Secret Architecture of Our Nation's Capital: The Masons and the Building of Washington, D.C. Paperback – March 26, 2002


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The Secret Architecture of Our Nation's Capital: The Masons and the Building of Washington, D.C. + The Secrets of Masonic Washington: A Guidebook to Signs, Symbols, and Ceremonies at the Origin of America's Capital + Solomon's Builders: Freemasons, Founding Fathers and the Secrets of Washington D.C.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 528 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Perennial; Reprint edition (March 26, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060953683
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060953683
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 1.2 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #167,299 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In this audacious, erudite study, Ovason (The Secrets of Nostradamus) sets out to prove that Washington, D.C., was designed and built largely by Masonic architectsAand that they imprinted the beliefs of their brotherhood on the city's layout. Benjamin Franklin, architect James Hoban (who designed the White House), Presidents Garfield and Polk and Statue of Liberty sculptor Frederic Bartholdi were all Masons. Indeed, when President George Washington laid the cornerstone of the Capitol building in 1793, he wore a Masonic apron adorned with occult Masonic symbols and an image of the zodiac. And although textbooks teach that the federal city was the brainchild of French engineer Pierre-Charles L'Enfant, Ovason argues that Washington, Jefferson, U.S. Surveyor General Andrew Ellicott and othersAmany of them MasonsAsubstantially modified L'Enfant's original blueprint. As a result, Masonic symbolism appears in the marble, plaster, concrete, glass and paint facades of the Federal Reserve, the Library of Congress and other landmarks. This book, the result of a decade of thought and research, establishes the plausibility of Ovason's theory. However, the volumeAa labyrinthine, illustrated tomeAalso contains a good deal of wild speculation. Ovason posits, for example, that the "earthly triangle" formed by Capitol/White House/Washington Monument mirrors a triangle of stars in the constellation Virgo, an astrological sign important to the Masons. This, he contends, proves that Masons secretly consecrated the nation's capital to the celestial Virgo. It's an interesting, if dubious, suggestionAbut Ovason never establishes the significance of the link between the capital and the occult. (July)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Ovason, an astrology teacher, analyzes the symbols in the architecture of Washington, DC, and connects them to the influences of the arcane traditions of Masonry. This ambitious work looks at the Capitol, the Washington Monument, city planning, and the numerous zodiacs located throughout the city. A major theme is the importance of the Virgo sign of the zodiac and how it is reflected in the sculpture, design, and ceremony involved in the construction of the capital. In general, the work contains thorough research and brilliant analysis, but the reader may find that Ovason reads too much into some symbols, especially when locating ties to Virgo. A minor problem is the overuse of substantive endnotes, which displaces some important information that could have been incorporated into the text. Recommended for academic libraries with collections of architectural history, Masonic, or esoteric literature. By contrast, The United States Capitol is a collection of specialists' papers offering numerous points of view on a single building in the nation's capital. The first section, on architecture, traces the design and construction of the building from its beginnings in 1790 through the present Office of the Architect. Much emphasis is placed on the conflicts of personality and philosophy that have burdened the building's development. The second section, on painting and sculpture, focuses more on the objects than the artists, giving considerable attention to techniques and hidden meanings within the works. Altogether, the book is well researched and appropriately illustrated with photographs and architectural drawings. Recommended for both academic and larger public libraries.DEric Linderman, Ida Rupp P.L., Port Clinton, OH
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Very well documented.
Naomi Bennett
Having lived in DC at one time, this alone made the book worthwhile.
Scott Snyder
I found this book very interesting and educational.
G. Eaton

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

119 of 121 people found the following review helpful By Scott Snyder on July 27, 2000
Format: Hardcover
It's generally well known that many of the Founding Fathers were Masons. Ovason presents convincing evidence that Masonic symbolism is hard-wired into the layout of our nation's capital.
To do so, he reviews the beginnings of the city: Washington's selection of this site for the new nation's capital, the design competitions, the building projects. Having lived in DC at one time, this alone made the book worthwhile. Ovason then overlays the city with all the astrological symbolism that can be found around the district. Some of it is in the open and is plain for all to see. Other things are hidden. Better yet, alignments between zodiacal symbols have meanings and the author careful spells it all out.
I won't give away the complete story, but Ovason has discovered something in the layout of Constitution Avenue, Pennsylvania Avenue and the Old Post Office that locks heaven and earth together and gives literally concrete meaning to celestial symbology. Washington is the New Rome, and our Founding Fathers carefully imprinted their hopes for the future in the very streets of the city.
You'll never look at Washington, DC the same way ever again.
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57 of 66 people found the following review helpful By Graham D. Lincoln VINE VOICE on February 28, 2001
Format: Hardcover
George Washington layed the Cornerstone of The White House in "Full Masonic Regalia" and I have found various illustrations of our Founding Father, in his Regalia, surrounded with Masonic Symbolism, but this book contains more, including the story! I have known that America was founded upon Masonic Principles for a very long time, but this is the first book I have seen, in the public domain, that tells much of story. Also, there are many Illustrations, Full Color Photos and informative Masonic revelations in this book that I have not seen, before. I cannot claim that the Astrological information was new to me...but, I have been studying Astrology and reading Masonic texts for ten years. Anyone with a smidgeon of interest in Masonry knows that America was founded upon these Principles and the ideas of Great Men, such as John Locke..... However, most people do not realize that America is Founded upon Masonry, to the extent that it pervades the Architecture--not-only of Washington, D.C.--of our Nation. Public buildings all-over Louisville, KY and the surrounding area (including small towns in Indiana) are adorned with Masonic Symbolism. Masonic Symbolism is built into the Stonework of most of the Courthouses and other public buildings, including churches. A small town, in Indiana, even has Masonic Templar Symbolism built into the stained-glass windows. For an interesting journey, take a Carriage ride around Louisville, KY (and check-out the Symbolism on the "2nd street bridge," then cross-over to Jeffersonville, IN and take a good look at the old Masonic Lodge!). It's not just D.C. Folks...it's the whole country. However, this fine book explores the wonders of our Nation's Capitol and gives us beautiful pictures of our "hidden" history.Read more ›
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 30, 2002
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a wonderful book, I highly recommend it. Exhaustively referenced, with many hard-to-find images. This book will fascinate a wide range of people, from those interested in Art History to those interested in the occult. The writing style is colloquial, but intelligent, offering a new perspective on American History. Don't hesitate to buy it.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Mark Gibbs on February 13, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A remarkable amount of research has gone into this book. The previous reviewer complained that it was "undocumented" but why does the author need to document a road, a building, or a statue if it exists in plain sight and is common knowledge? This proves that the author's thesis touches a raw nerve to those who are comfortable only with conventional understandings of history that sugar coat the past and pull the wool over our eyes. Clearly, there was a powerful cult behind the formation of the United States. They were not devout Christians, but were committed only to the esoteric ideals of their own secret society. Ideals that apparently originate in ancient Egypt, not Jerusalem. The author, however, coming from a Christian background and perspective dances around this truth. He prefers to view them as Christians who were simply outside the mainstream. Their obssession with "Virgo" proves this, because as everyone knows Virgo represents the Virgin Mary, right? Wrong.

The author fails to grasp this nettle and meanders into a neverland that maintains Washington's "Christianity," so we'll have to wait a while longer for the real story.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Thomas J. Ryan on April 27, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is one of the most interesting books I"ve ever read, being from Washington DC I didn't know the history of Foggy Bottom and other areas, what they were like in the 1700s and 1800s, so I couldn't put it down. There are illustrations and the writing is very creative and interesting, I just loved it. AA++
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Tell Me A Story VINE VOICE on January 2, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I just discovered the key to selling a new book, put the word Secret in the title. Currently books with the Secret are selling like Gangbusters, The Secret by Rhonda Bryne and the sequels, The Secret Life of Bees, according to Amazon, there are over 74,725 book with Secret in the title.
Okay so let's talk about this book, it is a comprehensive history which is why I gave it 3 stars instead of 2. The book moves slowly, the author did his research and I have no quibble with that - I know this topic; however, the significance of why the Freemasons chose to do things that have been done, in the manner that they did is just not revealed, I was really disappointed because there is some terrific information out there and I am well versed in this topic based on my own research. I am wondering if this is because he wasn't allowed to "get to the point", no pun intended. I think the true reason he left out answers to why (Astrology is important but he didn't say why among other points never addressed is because Mason's aren't allowed to share the key precepts of their faith or beliefs to the uninitiated - that leaves out all females and many men.
There are many good books out there to understand the significance of Masonry -you won't find them by doing an internet search using the word - avoid the publications that will come up will give you books written by Masons (who often don't share that information, up front) these books reveal much of the same stuff rehashed, instead try books by William Schnoebelen, John Ankerberg, David Weldon, Tom C. McKenney, or anything Published by Chick Publications all provided excellent, well documented, significant information -though Ankerberg is very dry.
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