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NOVUS ORDO SECLORUM – Origin and Meaning of the Motto Beneath the American Pyramid”Novus Ordo Seclorum” was the motto suggested in 1782 by Charles Thomson, the Founding Father chosen by the Continental Congress to come up with the final design for the Great Seal of the United States.

On June 20, 1782, Congress approved Thomson’s design for both sides of the Great Seal whose official description states:

On the base of the pyramid the numerical letters MDCCLXXVI
& underneath the following motto. ‘novus ordo seclorum’.

He put the motto at the bottom of the reverse side where its meaning ties into the imagery above it: the unfinished pyramid with the date MDCCLXXVI (1776).

Thomson did not provide an exact translation of the motto, but he explained its symbolism: Novus Ordo Seclorum signifies “the beginning of the new American Æra,” which commences from 1776.

ANNUIT COEPTIS – Origin and Meaning
of the Motto Above the Eye

Secretary of Congress Charles Thomson suggested “Annuit Coeptis” when he put together the final design of the Great Seal in June 1782.

He placed the motto at the top of the Seal’s reverse side, where its meaning is associated with the Eye of Providence in a triangle surrounded by light rays.

Thomson did not provide an exact translation of the motto, but he explained its symbolism: The Eye and the motto Annuit Coeptis “allude to the many signal interpositions of providence in favour of the American cause.” Masonic Ring

“Signal” means unusual, notable, outstanding.
“Interposition” means intervention. (In this case, a divine intervention.)



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