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While neither the snake nor serpent appears in masonic symbolism or ritual, many regalia-makers have used it to fashion the belt hook on masonic aprons. Intended as a symbol of wisdom, the eternal, the universe, the world or regeneration and rebirth, this usage has been singled out by some anti-masons as "proof" that the "Brotherhood of the Snake" worships Satan. All they have proved is their ignorance of its historical usage. Regalia makers simply adopted a common belt-clasp used by manufacturers of clothing for British schoolboys, Metropolitan London police until the early 1960s, and many military uniforms worn in England, the Commonwealth, and around the world.
THE SERPENT
SYMBOLISM
MASONIC APRON CLASP
INDEX OF PAPERS
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Military snake-clasps
Edwardian dress sword belt. Belt with lion buckles on sword slings, KC snake clasp buckle. <www.messdress-britishmilitaria.com>
16 century cross hatched snake belt hook found in Colchester, Essex, England. <colchestertreasurehunting.co.uk>
Post 1901 Royal Horse Artillery Officer’s Field Rank uniform. <www.britishmilitaria.com>
1871 O/R Pattern Waistbelt, Brown leather with brass snake clasp (Naval brigade) <www.users.globalnet.co.uk>
Natal Carabineers (1st Mounted Rifles) Sergeant’s Patrol Uniform. www.britishmilitaria.com
1936 French military acadamy uniform worn by André Fouché as Césariot. César (1936) Directed by Marcel Pagnol, written by Marcel Pagnol. Raimu, Pierre Fresnay, Fernand Charpin, Orane Demazis, André Fouché. 168 min., France, French, Black and White, Mono.
Metropolitan London Police, ceremonial No. 1 dress until 1965. Trousers were of Melton cloth and a leather snake clasp belt was worn round the tunic.
Prison warden uniform in 1902 London, England, as seen in Kind Hearts and Coronets (1949).
Post Boer War - WWI Canadian.
American Revolutionary War (1775-83).
British RAF sergeant's uniform, 1914, as seen in Dawn Patrol.
London bobbie's uniform, as seen in Die 3 Groschen-Opera (1931).
Other examples include the 95th Regiment (Rifles) uniform with a sword belt made of "...black leather and the same breadth as the pouch belt", and fastened by a crude brass snake clasp, and the pre-WWI Australian army and militia uniforms with breeches held up with a belt with brass belt hooks. "The belts are the early pattern belt with a snake clasp buckle, after 1903 the British introduced a single tongued buckle; in the Colonies this appeared somewhat later, later still in Militia units." See <http://www.grantsmilitaria.com>.

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