The Square and Compass is one of the main symbols of Freemasonry, and they began to be used in the assemblies of Freemasonry in the early seventeenth century although they were among the coded symbols of the secret society only in the eighteenth century.
The square and the compass have been attributed over the years to different interpretations. The first associates them to fellow Masons of workers employed in the construction of Solomon’s temple, on behalf Phoenician architect Hiram Abiff. Hiram, initiated to the knowledge arcane of pre-Diluge era, in sacred geometry, and he was killed after the end of the workers for the construction of the temple in order to preserve in the centuries his knowledge.
The Square and Compass are the basic symbols as needed to raise stable and regular construction. Become so by analogy with the symbols of the sorter means of virtue and knowledge that lead to spiritual perfection. In this key you can identify in the square the moral and, in the compass, the spiritual. In other words, the square symbolizes righteousness and rectitude of intention, of purpose and of works, that is an obligation, an immutable rule, a duty; the compass, however, will the ability, genius. In the degree of apprentice the first dominates and controls the second, while in the second degree the two symbols are balanced and in the third the compass overhangs the team. So by degrees they are meant relations between the one and the other faculties.
The meaning of the letter “G” located inside the two overlapped tools would be nothing more than the initial of the Great Architect, Hiram Abiff, and by extension the divine aspect related to the construction.
By Anna Bileti, “The Curious World of tattoo”