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There is no reason to suggest that Dr. Heinrich Karl Marx (1818/05/05 - 1883/03/14) was a freemason, although anti-masons have made the claim. The following interview by R. Landor1 proves nothing either way but does suggest, in context, that Marx was not associated with Freemasonry.
Marx on Freemasonry
Landor:...what is the International Society?2
Dr. Marx:You have only to look at the individuals of which it is composed — workmen.
Landor:Yes, but the soldier need be no exponent of the statecraft that sets him in motion. I know some of your members, and I can believe that they are not of the stuff of which conspirators are made. Besides, a secret shared by a million men would be no secret at all. But what if these were only the instruments in the hands of a bold, and, I hope you will forgive me for adding, not overscrupulous conclave?
Dr. Marx:There is nothing to prove.
Landor:The last Paris insurrection?3
Dr. Marx:I demand firstly the proof that there was any plot at all — that anything happened that was not the legitimate effect of the circumstances of the moment; or the plot granted, I demand the proofs of the participation in it of the International Association.
Landor:The presence of the communal body of so many members of the Association.
Dr. Marx: Then it was a plot of the Freemasons, too, for their share in the work as individuals was by no means a slight one. I should not be surprised, indeed, to find the Pope setting down the whole insurrection to their account. But try another explanation. The insurrection in Paris was made by the workmen of Paris. The ablest of the workmen must necessarily have been its leaders and administration, but the ablest of the workmen happen also to be members of the International Association. Yet, the Association, as such, may be in no way responsible for their action.

1."Interview with Karl Marx, head of L'Internationale," by R. Landor, New York World, July 18, 1871, reprinted Woodhull & Claflin’s Weekly, August 12, 1871
2. The First International, founded in London as the International Working Men’s Association in London on September 28, 1964.
3.The Commune of Paris (March 18, 1871 - May 28, 1871) was an insurrection by the newly-elected Paris government against the Versailles government, precipitated by France’s defeat in the Franco-German war and the collapse of Napoleon III’s Second Empire (1852-70), and motivated by a fear that the National Assembly, with a royalist majority, would restore the monarchy. It was quickly suppressed with the burning of the Tuileries Palace and City Hall, the killing of some 20,000 insurrectionists and the subsequent arrest of another 38,000, 7,000 of whom were deported.


© 1871-2023 Grand Lodge of British Columbia and Yukon A.F. & A.M. Updated: 2002/08/18