This word is found in the French handbooks of the advanced Degrees. It is undoubtedly a corruption of Jacquesson, and this a mongrel word compounded of the French Jacques and the English son, and means the son of James, that is, James II. It refers to Charles Edward the Pretender, who was the son of that abdicated and exiled monarch. It is a significant relic of the system attempted to be introduced by the adherents of the house of Stuart, and by which they expected to enlist Freemasonry as an instrument to effect the restoration of the Pretender to the throne of England. For this purpose they had altered the legend of the Third Degree, making it applicable to James II, who, being the son of Henrietta Maria, the widow of Charles I, was designated as the Widow's Son.
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