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Brotherly Kiss

holy and bridge

BROTHERLY KISS. At the close of their meetings the first Christians were accustomed to kiss each other; this took place also at the holy evening banquet—agape of the com munity of brothers and sisters. To this practice the Apostles Paul and Peter refer in their epistles: "Greet each other with the holy kiss"—"philemate agid," Rom. xvi., 16, 1 Pet. v., 14. This holy kiss, as a sign or token of brotherly love, is found likewise as a venerable custom in many Lodges, particularly in Europe, where the Master greets with a kiss each newly-initiated member.

BROTHIiiRS OF THE BRIDGE. A charitable and reli gious Brotherhood, which arose in the south of France in the medimval age, the members of which devoted themselves to the work of building bridges, roads, hospitals, the maintain ing ferries, and otherwise providing for the comfort and protection of travelers and pilgrims. Two bridges, in par

ticular, are mentioned as having been constructed by them; that of "Bon-Pas," three miles from Avignon, and the bridge over the Rhone, "Pont-St.-Esprit," in the department of Gard, which was commenced Aug. 21, 1265. Pope Clement III. granted them peculiar favors in consideration of their works of mercy and humanity. The peculiar token or jewel of the Order was a pick-axe worn upon the breast. RAMSAY, in a discourse published in Paris, 1741, affirms that this Order united or established relations with the Knights of St.. John of Jerusalem, and afterward with the Roman builders, rind thus establishes a direct connection between them and Freemasonry. Many of the high degrees of the French system have borrowed some of their decorations from the Order of the Brothers of the Bridge.