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John's Brothers

In the Charter of Cologne, it is said that before the year 1440 the society of Freemasons was known by no other name than that of John's Brothers Joannaeorum fratrum; that they then began to be called at Valenciennes, Free and Accepted Masons; and that at that time, in some parts of Flanders, by the assistance and riches of the brotherhood, the first hospitals were erected for the relief of such as were afflicted with Saint Anthony's fire. In another part of the Charter it is said that the authors of the associations were called Brothers consecrated to John, or in Latin fratres Joanni Sacros, because "they followed the example and imitation of John the Baptist."

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