This engaging study reveals how a half-hidden thread of Masonic symbolism runs through Hogarth's work. The classical and Biblical references, whose ambiguity and apparent paradoxical relation with the eighteenth-century situations depicted have often been underlined, gain coherence and unity when they are analyzed in the symbolic framework of freemasonry and alchemy Hogarth was busy both using and concealing in his prints. The coded meaning is often entirely at odds with the surface one, a fact suspected but never proved by critics so far. A very original and titillating book for academics and general reader alike. Readers will be intrigued by the secrecy of symbols from mythological, biblical and Masonic references and hidden codes that have to be deciphered. Furthermore, they will be also left intrigued by the secret message that the very popular and well-known painter is attempting to deliver. Academics will be interested in the book since this thorough approach has never been proposed by any of Hogarth's scholars so far.