The way Columbus has made up his won coat of arms from the Portuguese scutcheon – as discovered by Patrocinio Ribeiro – betrays, in my opinion, somebody used to deal with malers pertaining to the Cabala. Through the first illustration we see who Columbus transformed the small scutcheons into anchors.
Each anchor was set on five points, arranged crosswise, causing respectively the rectilinear segment and the segment of the curve to cross three points. Thus:
We find out the fallowing: – the straight line crosses 3 points (ternary). The cabalistic number 3 thice repeated (3+3), once showing a straight line and once a curved line (antagonic lines) reveals a hexagram:
Straight line, crossing 3 poinst may mean
Curved line, crossing 3 poinst, may mean
Anchor, formed by two antagonic lines may mean
Each anchor is therefore equivalent to a exagram. It must also be noted that the hexagrams are 5, and each of them has the cabalistic value of 6: we shall therefore have:
6 x 5 = 30
3 + 0 = 3
according to a simple cabalistic calculation.
Therefore there exists in Columbus’ Coat of Arms the cabalistic number 3. There exists also the number 5, if we take each hexagram as one unit. There also exists the number 7, because 25 being the total number of points, on which the hexagrams have been constructed, we shall have:
2 + 5 = 7
Otherwise the arrangements of the points cross-wise already reveals the quaternary, which may correspond to the hexagram, the vertical line representing the upper vertex triangle while the horisontal line (antagonical to the vertical) represents the lower vertex triangle:
Columbus being Portuguese, and maybe of Jewish blood, it is interesting to find out how he, or somebody for him, managed to derive from the Portuguese scutcheon a new one by means of the Cabala.
It must also be noted that the anchor, as well as the hexagram, are found in the Rosicrucian symbolism.
We may now deal with Columbus’ signature. It is as follows:
.S. A .S.
X M Y
Let us examine the portion above the name:
.S. A .S.
X M Y
We see 3 SSS, placed according to the 3 vertices of a triangle, each one of them sided by two points.
Here we see the ternary (3) and each letter sided by two points may correspond to the two meanings which they are used for by Masonry:
Health! Health! Health! or thrice Healt!
Salus! Stabilitas! Sapientia!
The two points by each S may also mean that the triangle is to be repeated, thus obtaining a hexagram:
If by means of three lines we connect the letters, 3 by 3, we shall obtain:
having thus the cross of five arms, which appears in some hermetic societies, and which may correspond to the tetragramas it is a cross.
The outline of the portion of the signature above the name is pentagonal, which reveals a pentagram:
If we count the letters of this figure we find they are 7.
We have therefore on the higher portion of the signature the Cabalistic numbers 3, 5, 7, tetragram and hexagram.
On the lower portion of the signature there are 9 letters:
which shows perhaps in Columhus a high degree of initiation through this number.
The symbolism, revealed in Columbus’ signature, belong to Rosicrucian rites, and may also belong to the occult doctrines of the Templars.
I have reasons to believe (which would be too long to detail here) that the Order of the Temple, though supressed in the times of King D. Diniz, continued to exist in Portugal, working actively, maybe well patronised in order to escape the awful persecutions which the Apostolic Roman Catholics exercised against those who were not Catholics according to their orthodoxy.
1 By a pressing insistence on my dear friend, great writer and famous physician, Dr. Barbosa Sueiro, he did the kindness to make the analysis of the descoverer of America’s signature from the occultism.
Not knowing any analysis of this kind, I take the liberty to reproduce the interesting work of Dr. Barbosa Sueiro (on his own words) which will remain as a valuable study on the misterious character of Colombo and thus enriching the so great Colombian bibliography.
2 Barbosa Sueiro, Professor of Lisbon Medical School, was a member of the Rosicrucian Fellowship of Portugal. He was an expert on cabala and astrology and a long-time and regular contributor to our magazine "Rosacruz" since the beginning of the last century. He published dozens of papers and essays in our quarterly. One of the most interesting paper is entitled “Symbols of Moses”. He used the pseudonym “Norael”