The bull In Eminenti Apostolatus Specula of April 28, 1738, by which Clement XII inaugurated the long series of papal denunciations of Freemasonry, was issued virtually without warning and without much apparent provocation. Such was not the case with the Unigenitus of 1713 or the Dominus ac Redemptor noster of 1773, affecting Jansenists and Jesuits, for both movements had for years before their proscription occasioned violent controversy not only theological but political. Today the Unigenitus is the gravestone of a dead issue, while the Jesuit order was reinstituted in 1815. But the anti-Masonic Bull of 1738 has proven to be the progenitor of increasingly severe anathemas over two centuries, and the persecutions and the political conflicts to which it gave the impetus show little abatement. Rome's sudden charge of secret heresy and political sedition against a movement which theretofore had been planned and conducted with a view to avoiding, indeed even to reconciling political and theological animus, served to create, wherever the proscriptions enjoined by the Bull were executed, the anti-clerical and revolutionary features objected to! What else could have been expected from the ensuing persecutions, which brought imprisonment, confiscation, exile, and often martyrdom to multitudes of Freemasons in the eighteenth century? And how ironical that fate was for a movement whose original purpose was to unite men of all faiths, values, and classes in a spiritual, moral, and cultural brotherhood, and whose record, prior to the Bull, was one of unprecedented sectarian fraternity. But with the publication of the Bull and the suffering at the hands of the Inquisition and the secular arm which it instigated, there began a virtual crusade, such as had been directed previously against Saracens, Cathari, Hussites, Lutherans, Anabaptists, Socinians, and Huguenots; and this crusade continues, with the connivance of Catholic Fascists, to this day.