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Friday, November 06, 2009

Robert Lomas, Elias Ashmole and the World's Oldest Museum

"Hiram Key" author Brother Robert Lomas is featured in an article in Saturday's Yorkshire Evening Post. In the article it is revealed that Dan Brown has admitted his character of Robert Langdon is partially based on Lomas, even if he hasn't ever jumped out of a helicopter in a tweed jacket.

Despite his ongoing "Hiram Key/Solomon Key/Templar key" series of books, I have to say my favorite of his books is Freemasonry and the Birth of Modern Science, which he admitted to me a couple of years ago was his personal favorite, as well. It discusses the formation of the Royal Society and the roles played by Robert Moray and Elias Ashmole. Freemasons in the U.S. have rarely heard of Morey, and usually only know the name of Ashmole because he is erroneously thought to be the first known speculative Freemason initiated in 1646. Moray's initiation was in Newcastle on May 20th, 1641.

Ashmole's accomplishments were far greater than simply being initiated into a lodge. He eventually went to Oxford and in 1660, he started acquiring a collection that became what is regarded today as the world's oldest museum, known simply enough as the Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archeology.


This week the Ashmoliean Museum reopened after a major renovation and construction of a new wing. Read about it here:

Stories from the Ashmolean Museum

The reopening of The Ashmolean, review

The reopening of the Ashmolean: infinite riches in a larger room

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