Napoleon Bonaparte: Freemason Or Not?

Few figures in history are more recognizable that Napoleon Bonaparte, military leader and later Emperor of France during the time of the French Revolution.  His legendary ego almost as famous as his exploits.

It’s often been said that Napoleon Bonaparte was a Freemason--initiated into a French Regimental Lodge, probably the Army Philadelphe Lodge in Malta between 1795 – 1798.  But, there has always been some disagreement over that fact. 

Recently, a document from 1805 has surfaced that is supposed to prove that Napoleon was a Freemason.  It is an account of a Masonic dinner attended by “Brother Bonaparte.”  Whether this document ends the controversy or not has yet to be seen.

So I believe in this particular case, it’s safe to say that the jury is still out on whether Napoleon Bonaparte was a Freemason.  



  1. I would be very interested in exploring this further. Our Lodge, Columbia 2397 in UGLE possess an apron purporting to have belonged to Napoleon, inscribed with information about him being made a MM in 1801 after being initiated between 1793 and 1798 by Philadelphe Lodge. Phil B

  2. Napoleon had 3 brothers who are documented as Masons so it could have been one of them @ the dinner. On the other hand, if his brothers were Nasons it's more likely he was too. But then U.S. Grant's father & brothers were Masons & he was not. So lots of ifs and maybes.


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