History of the Order & Rite

Rite of Mizraim 1788 - Rite of Memphis 1815
Ancient and Primitive Oriental Rite of Mizraim and Memphis - 1945

The «Ancient and Sovereign Egyptian Rite of Misraim and Memphis» is considered the most Hermetic Masonic Order and we derived by our predecessor organization, by means of Initiation and Doctrines, of the Ancient and Primitive Oriental Rite of Misraim Memphis.  The Ancient and Sovereign Egyptian Rite of Misraim and Memphis is the result of the fusion of the esoteric process of the Egyptian Rite or Rite of Misraim that came from Venice in 1801 and the Oriental Rite or Rite of Memphis that derived in 1839 in Paris, and it was based on a nomenclature that worked through the degrees of Misraim from its inception, including the Initiations and Rites of the Oriental Rite.

The Rite of Misraim derived from Venice in 1801 due to the efforts of Filalete Abraham and immediately spread into Italy and France.

The Oriental Rite of Memphis derived in 1839 in Paris from Etienne Marconis. Similar documents are kept in the Archives our predecessor Order; The Sovereign Grand Sanctuary of Adriatic (Superum) has, among other documents, three scrolls that restore and clarify, as much as possible, the history and the branches of the two Rites that were merged by Marco Egidio Allegri. He stood as Supreme Force of the Misraim of Venice in 1923 and also Grand Lineman ad vitam of the Memphis Rite at Palermo where he was later put to sleep in 1925.

The information about these two Rites is a bit fractioned due to the historical transitions that both of them underwent and mostly the Rite of Misraim which in the course of time came was influenced by the secular power and authority of other Masonic forces who had lost the true spirit of the Ancient Initiation.  These forces always tried to absorb the orthodox Rites so that they could restore their lost traditional doctrines and oral teachings.

One of the historical documents allow us to guarantee that the Rite of Misraim was active in Zakynthos Island in 1782 and in Venice in 1796. In Venice the Rite was put to sleep after the capture of Enetic Democracy from Austria and awakened from Filalete Abraham, which was the name of Byron Tassoni di Modena, on 1801.

On May 16th of 1945, right after the end of World War II, M.E. Allegri activated his privileges as Supreme Force, as 90° of Misraim and Grand Hierophant “ad vitam” of the Rite of Memphis and merged these Rites into one, creating the "Ancient and Primitive Oriental Rite of Misraim and Memphis" that was developed into 95 degrees, proceeding in the foundation of Sovereign Grand Sanctuary of Adriatic (Superum), The Sublime Mystical Temple, The Sublime Consistorium of the 30° 90° degree, and the Sublime Peristyle of Orphics.

M.E.Allegri also established in perpetuity the Ruling Mother Lodge of «OSIRIS» and established the Sublime Councils and the Ruling Mother Lodge in the zenith of Venice to confirm the origin and to ensure the continuum of the Venerable Rite in the future.

On October 14th of 1949, M.E. Allegri passed over the Eternal Grand Pyramid, after he put to "sleep" the lesser Chambers of the Rite, leaving as a successor through his will, Ottavio Ulderisco Zasio that ruled as Grand Hierophant till May 1st 1966, who then passed unto the Eternal Grand Pyramid, succeeded by Count Gastone as it was said in the will of the deceased. Count Gastone Ventura awakened the Rite on all the Chambers at the Winter Solstice of 1971 and ruled as Grand Hierophant till July 28th 1981 who passed over the Eternal Grand Pyramid leaving as his successor Sebastiano Caracciolo till April 4th 2013 who passed over the Eternal Grand Pyramid.  

Since the passing of Sebastiano Caracciolo it has been unclear of whom the next Grand Hierophant should be and the power of re-awakening the Rite was up to the Patriarchs Grand Conservators of the Order and the Rite; and as such we are reawakening the Order and the Rite under the banner of the Grand Sanctuary of Ionia.

Overall the beautiful initiations and doctrines, as well as, the traditional and authentic origin of the Ancient and Primitive Oriental Rite of Misraim and Memphis has annoyed a lot of people because it is considered one of the few traditional and Regular Rites that continue to maintain the power of transmission.


History of the United Rites... Continued...

Note: It is important to distinguish between the Ancient and Primitive Oriental Rite of Mizraim - Memphis of Italy (our predecessor Order) and the Ancient and Primitive Rite of Memphis - Mizraim

The Ancient & Sovereign Egyptian Rite of Mizraim & Memphis, direct lineage on the Grand Sanctuary of Adriatic, is a dual Masonic - Illuministic system that contains in itself various forms of the western initiatic tradition. It option starts from the esoteric systems of the ancient Egyptian Hierophants.

Our Venerable Rite, because of its reference to Mizraim (deriving from the word 'Mizr' that signifies 'Egypt' in Hebrew) is also known as Egyptian Rite.  Cagliostro's Egyptian Masonry related to the A.S.E.R.M.M. by its study of mystical and theurgical practices.

The two United Rites of Mizraim - Memphis, form in their union an authentic Order and not just a simple Rite. The Order was conceived with the purpose of collating in a single organisation, all the wisdom, knowledge of initiates scattered in the numerous Ritual Bodies of higher Masonry and in the Illuministic and Chivalric Orders.  The A.S.E.R.M.M. is of Chivalric and Illuministic character, deeply rosicrucian and hermetic, with particular cabalistic functions, that does not in its higher degrees have correspondences with the other degrees practised in Ritual Masonry.

The creator of the Egyptian Freemasonry of Egyptian Rite was the Count Alexander of Cagliostro (1749-1796). Alexander of Cagliostro was initiated to the secrets of the Egyptian Freemasonry by the mysterious Master Altothas in 1776, year of the foundation of the Illuminati Order. The summit of the Illuminati Order was constituted by six members: four were known (Weishaupt, von Knigge, Goethe, Herder) and two were secrets (Franklin and Cagliostro).

In effects a secret connection existed between the Illuminati Order of Weishaupt and the Egyptian Freemasonry of Cagliostro that was officially founded in 1785, year of the suppression of the Illuminati Order.  Besides, Napoleone Bonaparte was initiated by Cagliostro to the Egyptian Freemasonry and the Masonic Rites of Memphis, of Misraïm and of Memphis-Misraïm come down from it.  Gad Bedarride was received into the Rite of Misraim by the Sage Patriarch Ananiah, Grand Egyptian Conservator, who has been identified by the author Gaston Ventura, our own predecessor Sovereign Grand Hierophant General.

It is said that at this time that Cagliostro was in England, elaborating his famous "Egyptian Rite" which he officially founded in 1782. According to his own account, this rite was derived from a manuscript by a certain George Cofton - whose identity has never been discovered - which he bought by chance in London.  John Yarker, however, is of the opinion that "the Rite of Cagliostro was clearly that of Pasqually," and that if he acquired it from a manuscript in London it would indicate that Pasqually had disciples in that city.  A far more probable explanation is that Cagliostro derived his Egyptian Masonry from the same source as that on which Pasqually had drawn for his Order of Elected Priests.

It is said that at this time Cagliostro created the Mother Lodge of the Egyptian Rite at Lyons.  Cagliostro, it is said, had established the system of Egyptian Freemasonry which consisted of both male and female Lodges, the latter being headed by his wife, Serafina.  The fruits of Cagliostro's researches into the occult societies of Europe were a body of knowledge known as the Arcana Arcanorum, or A.·. A.·. He took this term from the original Rosicrucians of the 17th Century, but his corpus consisted of descriptions of magical practices that stressed "Internal Alchemy," so it goes.  Cagliostro had learned these Tantrik techniques from German Rosicrucian lodges.

A few years [after 1776] the celebrated Count Cagliostro founded at Strasburg his Egyptian Masonry. [His first Lodge was founded at Lyons, under the name of "Triumphant Wisdom"; but he afterwards extended his scheme, and opened at Paris an androgyne Lodge, which he termed the "Mother Lodge of Egyptian Adoptive Masonry".  He afterwards went to Courland, and was so fortunate as to number among his dupes the Countess de Meden, who recommended him to the notice of the Empress Catherine. He was, however, finally exposed and denounced.]

In 1782 a new and attractive Order sprang up, consisting of 90º degrees, which was called the Order of Mizraim, or The Egyptian Rite.  It made its appearance in Italy, and was said to have been brought from Egypt by a learned Egyptian, of the name of Ananiah. [Barruel places the introduction of Egyptian Masonry a little earlier. He says, 'A Jutlant merchant, who had lived some time in Egypt, began, in the year 1771, to overrun Europe, pretending to initiate adepts in the ancient mysteries of Memphis.  He stopped for some time in Malta, where the only mysteries which he taught were the tenets of Manes; and these he sedulously infused into the minds of the people. These principles began to expand, and the island was already threatened with revolutionary confusion, when the Knights very wisely obliged our modern Illuminee to seek his safety in flight. The famous Count Cagliostro is said to have been a disciple of his, as well as some other adepts in the county of Avignon and Lyons.

The Rite began around 1805 amongst Napoleon's soldiers in Egypt who were Freemasons. It was based primarily on the degree work of the Philadelphes of Narbonne as well as several other masonic Rites that were operating in France during this period. The Rite was then introduced to France from Egypt by Samuel Honis in 1815 and also spread to Italy.

It was soon transplanted into France, and flourishes there at 1850s; although it was subsequently shown to have been invented and brought to maturity by two Jewish Masons, called Bedarride [In one of the degrees, detached portions are introduced of the lecture of the Royal Order of Bruce; and therefore it is utterly impossible that this system could have been imported from Egypt, where the above Order was unknown. Before the French revolution, there were some Chapters of it in France. During the ensuing anarchy, some copies of several of the lectures had found their way into improper hands; and it is probable that the Bedarrides had obtained possession of them; although they had never been initiated into the degree; and thus the fragments of these lectures became incorporated into their new system of Misraic Masonry.], and doubts are entertained whether it be so old as the commencement of the present century. [Thory says it was not known in France till 1814, although he acknowledges that it was previously practised in Italy.]

Between 1810 and 1813, in Naples (Italy), the three brothers Bédarride (Michel, Marc and Joseph) received the Supreme Powers from the Order of Mizraïm and developed the Rite of Misraïm in France. They made it official in Paris in 1814. The Rite was composed of 90 degrees, taken from the Scottish freemasonry, from Martinism and other Masonic currents, and the last four degrees received the name of "Arcana Arcanorum."

In 1815, in Montauban (France), the Mother Lodge of the Rite of Memphis was constituted with the Grand Master Samuel Honis as head, whom followed, in 1816, Gabriel-Mathieu Marconis.  In 1838, Jean Etienne Marconis de Nègre, son of this last one, took over the Rite of Memphis. The Rite, for J. E. Marconis de Nègre, was a continuation of the ancient Mysteries practised in the Antiquity, in India and in Egypt. The Constitutions of the Rite said: "... the masonic rite of Memphis is the continuation of the Mysteries of the Antiquity. The Rite taught the first men to pay homage to the divinity... ". The Rite of Memphis reached the 92º and 95º degrees.

The Ancient and Primitive Rite of Memphis and Misraim is inarguably the most Hermetic Masonic Order in the International Masonic scene. It is the fusion of the esoteric process of the Egyptian Rite or Rite of Mizraim that came from Venice at 1801 and the Eastern Rite or Rite of Memphis that was founded at 1839 in Paris. The Rite of Misraim came from Venice at 1801 due to the efforts of Filalete Abraham and immediately spread into Italy and France, Italy and France. The Eastern Rite of Memphis was founded at 1839 in Paris from Etienne Marconis and it was based on a nomenclature that worked through the degrees of Mizraim from start, including the Initiations and Rites of the Eastern Rite.

The information about these two Rites are a bit fractioned due to the historical inflexions that both Rites underlay, mostly the Rite of Mizraim that in the course of time came across with the political power and authority of other Masonic forces which having lost the true spirit of the Ancient Initiation, rendered elite clubs that could hardly accept the occurrence of an orthodox elite. These forces always tried to absorb the orthodox elite Rites in any way they could, obviously, so that they could restore their lost for ages traditional genuineness. Especially in Italy, the fights that were conducted in the 19th century from the Austrian Government in the Lombardy - Venice and other Governments of different states of the peninsula were very poisonous. During the 20th century, a lot of mud-slinging was spilled from the fascistic established order of Italy.

Nevertheless, the most important documents were saved and spread till our days. Such documents allow us to guarantee that the Rite of Mizraim was active at Zakynthos Island at 1782 and at Venice at 1796. In Venice the Rite was put to sleep after the capture of Enetic Democracy from Austria and awakened from Filalete Abraham, which was the name of Byron Tassoni di Modena, on 1801.