[Grand Lodge]
[Calendar] [Search] [Resources] [History] [Links] [Sitemap]
References to Freemasonry in popular culture range from the vitriolic to the innocuous. Far more often they are merely misinformed allusions from which Freemasonry faces a far more insidious threat; that of being marginalized, trivialized, and fictionalized. Most of the references noted on this site are harmless, simply pointing out that Freemasonry has played a role in our society; some are humorous, yet some are disturbing in their associations.
ART
CINEMA | COMICS
COMMON EXPRESSIONS
FICTION | LITERATURE | MUSIC
FICTIONAL FRATERNITIES: TV
FRATERNITIES & SOCIETIES: FILM
FRATERNITIES & SOCIETIES: STAGE
FRATERNITIES & SOCIETIES: TV
FRATERNITIES: CARTOONS
OBSCURITIES | NON-FICTION
POP CULTURE CURIOSITIES
FICTIONAL FRATERNITIES
RADIO | TELEVISION
DOCUMENTARIES
ONLINE
.
Masonic expressions in pop culture
[Yellow
Detail: "The Yellow Kid and His New Phonograph", Richard Felton Outcault (1863-1928), New York Journal October 25, 1896.
MANY TERMS used by freemasons have entered common speech without even being noticed as such. When such expressions as "on the square," "square deal," "on the level," "black ball", "third degree" or "three degrees" are made use of in fiction, they are rarely of masonic significance.
Some usages of the term "square" may derive from a common expression in accounting where, to square accounts, the debits column equal the credits column.
The use of black and white pebbles for balloting is mentioned by the Roman poet, Ovid (43/03/20 BCE - 17 CE in Metamorphoses (xv, 41). The use of the terms "square" or "level" as metaphors for honesty and trustworthiness also can be found in the annals of Rome, Greece, Egypt and China. They were not invented by the freemasons.
Other phrases from masonic ritual will appear in works of fiction, sometimes to imply a masonic connexion but far more often because the framers of early masonic ritual took their language from literary conventions of the period.

References in film, television, lyrics, and fiction
Square (deal)
Around the World in 80 Days (1956)
Ballot Box Bunny (1950)
Birdman of Alcatraz (1962)
Cheers (1982)
Detour (1945)
Gasoline Alley (1924)
Goldfinger (1964)
In Old Chicago (1937)
King Kong (1933)
Krazy Kat (1940)
Maltese Falcon (1941)
Nevada (1944)
(On the) square
The Andy Griffith Show (1961)
The Boll Weevil Song (1961)
Buck Privates (1941)
Flames (1932)
The Front Page (1931)
A Gun, a Car, a Blonde (1997)
Kid Galahad (1937)
Invisible Stripes (1939)
The Late Show (1977)
Nothing Sacred (1937)
Popeye the Sailor (1933)
Port of Lost Girls (1938)
San Quentin (1937)
Straighten Up and Fly Right (1943)
On the level
1941 (1979)
African Dodger (1931)
Alibi (1929)
The Amazing Dr. Clitterhouse (1938)
The Andy Griffith Show (1963)
The Andy Griffith Show (1963)
The Big Chance (1933)
The Big Noise (1944)
Born to KIll (1947)
Bowery Blitzkrieg (1941)
Broadway Melody of 1940
Brother Orchid (1940)
Copacabana (1947)
Charlie Chan on Broadway (1937)
China Seas (1935)
The Cowboy and the Lady (1938)
Criss Cross (1949)
Dancing Lady (1933)
Each Dawn I Die (1939)
The Fatal Hour (1940)
Fleshmarket Close (2004)
The Friends of Eddie Coyle (1973)
'G' Men (1935)
The Great Ziegfeld (1936)
Goin' to Town (1935)
The Grifters (1990)
Here Comes Mr. Jordan (1941)
I Cover the Waterfront (1938)
I'm no Angel (1933)
In Old Chicago (1937)
King Kong (1933)
Little Giant (1933)
Little Red Walking Hood (1937)
Love Me or Leave Me (1955)
Manhattan Melodrama (1934)
Mission Impossible (1971)
My Favorite Blonde (1942)
My Friend Irma Goes West (1950)
Nightmare Alley (1947)
Picture Snatcher (1933)
Pin Up Girl (1944)
Port of New York (1949)
Quicksand (1950)
Red Headed Woman (1932)
Road to Zanzibar (1941)
Rockford Files (1975)
Serenity (2005)
The Simpsons (1993)
A Slight Case of Murder (1938)
Smart Money (1931)
Song of the Thin Man (1947)
Three Little Words (1950)
Trapped (1949)
Triumph of Sherlock Holmes (1935)
The Turn-Tail Wolf (1952)
The West Point Story (1950)

ANTI-MASONRY | ESSAYS & PAPERS | GRAND LODGE OF BC AND YUKON | HOME | LINKS | SITEMAP
[Anti-masonry]

© 1871-2014 Grand Lodge of British Columbia and Yukon A.F. & A.M. Updated: 2012/03/04
freemasonry.bcy.ca/fiction/vernacular.html