Religion in the Age of Enlightenment


Enlightenment, Ignaz Edler von Born, Egyptian


Although well known during his own lifetime as a scientist, author, and promoter of Enlightenment ideals, Ignaz Edler von Born also made a significant impact in his less public life as a Freemason. In 1784 he was both Meister vom Stuhl of the Masonic Lodge "Zur wahren Eintracht" and editor in chief of the Journal fur Freymaurer, published quarterly for just three years by Christian Friedrich Wappler in Vienna. In its very first issue, Born, under the initials I.v.B.M.v.St., Ignaz von Born, Meister vom Stuhl, contributed an article important to the Freemasons titled "Ueber die Mysterien der Aegyptier:" In the subsequent volumes, he made further contributions, including articles on the mysteries of the ancient Hebrews, the mysteries of the ancient inhabitants of India, and others. Nonetheless, his article on Egyptian mysteries remained his most influential article in the journal. Since his lifelong ambition to found an academy of science would not be realized during his life, he promoted scientific research and encouraged the publication of the results in his journal.