Late Supreme Magus of the Societas Rosicruciana In Anglia
An Appreciation by Henry Van Arsdale Parsell
of the Metropolitan College (NY) of the Societas Rosicruciana in America
Frater William Wynn Westcott, the Supreme Magus of the Societas Rosicruciana In Anglia, passed to the higher life in February 1925. He became a member of the Metropolitan College, S.R.I.A. Anglia, in London, early in the 80s and was made Secretary of that Rosicrucian body. At the same time he also filled the office of one of the Ancients. He began during these early days to prepare that remarkable series of papers which for so many years he read before the members of Metropolitan College. His ascent through the various offices of the Ancients was rapid, and in 1889 he was made a Master of the Temple in addition to his position of Secretary; and in 1892 he was unanimously elected the Supreme Magus, which office he held until his transition.
Frater Westcott was His Majesty’s Coroner for Northeast London. He was a Past Master of Masonic Lodge No. 814; and a P.Z. of Chapter 329, Yeovil; P.G.D.C. of the Province of Somerset; 30th Degree of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite; G.S.W. of the Rite of Swedenborg; P.S.G.W. of Mark Master Masons in the Province of Somerset, and also a P.M. of the Lodge Quatuor Coronati, which is a highly honored position.
Dr. Westcott wrote many medical and therapeutic works, but among the Fraters of this country he is better known by his numerous published works, among which are: “The Ever-Burning Lamps of the Ancients”; “The Sepher Yetzirah”; “The Isiac Tablet of Cardinal Bembo”; “The Magical Ritual of the Sanctum Regnum”; “An Essay on Alchemy”; “Numbers, Their Occult Power and Mystic Virtues”; “The Hieroglyphic Figures of Nicholas Flamel” and numerous volumes of the “Collectanea Hermetica.” Many of these works are now out of print and difficult to obtain.
Dr. Westcott founded the Library of the High Council of the Societas Rosicruciana In Anglia in 1889, and to this have been added the volumes bequeathed to it by the former Supreme Magus, Dr. Woodman, as well as numerous books added by gift and purchase. A catalog of the library has been issued.
The Fraters of Anglia have lost an erudite preceptor, a wise leader and a beloved brother; and we of America extend to our bereaved Fraters our sincere sympathy in their sorrow and an unreserved appreciation of the many years of faithful labor which our departed Frater devoted to the exposition of the Truths of which the Rosicrucian Philosophy is the treasure-house.