The Newport Tower: Finding the Year of Dedication, its Designer and Builder

B.L. Freeborn © October 30, 2022        (PDF version here.)

Who built the Newport Tower is a long standing question. It has been well proven by James Eagan that the tower is used for keeping time as the celestial bodies align with its numerous small windows. Eagan also noticed that certain letters formed with stones appear in the arches of the structure. Most notable and hard to miss is the >OI<. He found the Delta and P (shown as R). He also thought the h was a Greek η. From there he determined, probably correctly, it spells out Rode as in Rhode Island. His theory states John Dee had the tower built in 1583 in connection with a colonization attempt which failed.

The tower is shown on the “Woods Map 1635’ by William Woods a colonist in Providence, RI (Syverson, pg.32) The map notes it as Old Plymouth. This is the earliest known record and predates Benedict Arnold senior’s ownership. Evidently Arnold knew what it was and probably who built it, but because of the possibility of these prior claims resurfacing he referred to it as an old windmill knowing very well only a fool would believe that.

After studying Eagan’s discovery, the other letters shown above were identified. There are eight arches. Three of which have one letter displayed and five display two each. There is also a round stone on the interior opposite the >OI< stone on the northwest side. This makes fourteen altogether. To complicate the picture there is a runic inscription found over the southwest pillar (see images below). It was translated by Mongé (1967) and it reads Henricus 1116. This refers to Eirik Gnupsson, a Bishop from Greenland that was sent to Vinland. Other theories as to the tower’s origin abound. The Henricus theory is at least supported by an inscription imbedded into the tower itself in the manner of a corner stone.

This paper is a study of the inscription and stone letters. It is also an addendum to Validating North American Runic Inscriptions (PDF). The translation is given here and the study with its numeric work follows. The aforementioned paper will be helpful in understanding it.


The round stone on a peg in the NW arch is as indicative of Baal as a cross is to Christ. (The >OI< stones.) Furthermore, it would seem the stone letters spell out Baal. This leads to studying the ‘inscription’ as if it is of Baalist origin and if so, certain numbers must be present. Validating North American Runic Inscriptions describes how certain numbers are embedded in Baalist inscriptions. One should recall that the Catholic Church went to great lengths to stamp out Paganism in the time preceding, during and after Henricus’ tenure as Bishop. Apparently, Baal was central to that religion which is why there are so many references to it hidden in runic riddles. The dedication to Baal at Newport tower is unmistakable. The stone letters are repeated here:
Reading in a clockwise manner – b O O L T I h Δ I O >I< P/R O
These are transliterated as:           B A A L T I h D I A I R O

Note that the P in some languages is R. The O’s can be either O or A.
Reading from the top clockwise find: RO, BAAL, TI, HI, HID, DI, O, >I<
Also find: HIT, I TOOL, O LO, BOR, ROB, POL, RODE or RHODE and OH.

The first line suggests: Row, Baal, Tie, die, high, hide, eye, two strikes at I.
The second adds: hit, I tool Rob, hole low, bore, pole; rod, red or road; and oh. We may conclude:

R.O.B. designed and built.
Baal at the high tie hit. It hit twice at the eye in rows.
The hole is low where it bored the eye of the pole.
Rhode Island

These are typical Baalist statements except for the last one. The words are easily found in the inscription. Rhode Island perhaps requires an explanation. RHODE appears to be a combined anagram for Rod (or Red) and Oh (meaning island). A rod is a measuring length of 16.5 feet. The clay on the shores of Rhode Island is notably red so it might also refer to red. This suggests the name, Rhode Island, is much older than cited by modern authorities. The name Rob or R.O.B. is the name or initials of the designer. The H represents his pseudonym, Henricus.

Then Comes Henricus

Above the southwest pillar of the tower is a runic inscription. Harek Williams examines it in a video with James Eagan and confirms it is human carved and nothing more. A much better source for proving it is an authentic runic carving is Alf Mongé. Why the latter? Harek Williams reads plain text runes from that period. He does not delve into runic puzzles or dated riddles. Alf Mongé was a cryptologist. He deciphered the deep scratch marks into runic letters and decoded them. He found it reads: Henricus 1116. This gives a lower limit to the age of the tower. Based on other runic inscriptions found along the east coast and the Narragansett inscription nearby this seems plausible.

The rapidity with which the tower is giving away to nature demands that it must be under constant care. This requires that, regardless of when it was built, it must have been periodically repaired. It has been nine hundred years since Bishop Henricus visited (circa 1116) as stated in the Vinland map legend. The Spirit Pond stones are dated to 1214-1217. (Freeborn, Deciphering.., 2022) They commemorate his visit. The Kensington Stone’s date is 1362. It states the travelers came from Rhode Island. In 1525 Verazzanno explored the coast but did not mention the tower. In 1583 John Dee sent an expedition to the area. By the 1600’s it was settled by colonists and it came under the care of Benedict Arnold senior. This could mean it received periodic maintenance since the time of its construction, on or after 1116, until Arnold’s ownership five hundred years later.

The date and builder need not be total speculation. The aforementioned inlaid letters tell the story of Baal. If they were chosen in the manner of a runic riddle they may reveal more. Since Henricus was a master at runic riddles, and if this was built by him or in honor of him, then the symbols should contain further information. These riddles often contained a date.

As far as John Dee being the designer, that is possible as well. However, and it is a very big however, he was a devoted Christian and this tower is clearly a dedication to Baal. A study of Dee’s mathematics does not display the numbers so prevalent in Baalist inscriptions which suggests he is not the creator. The two are not mutually exclusive since Henricus was a Bishop of the church, but he lived at the point in time when Paganism, through genocide, was actively being stamped out. To continue their religion and live, they were forced underground or in this case, off the European continent. It is possible he was of both beliefs.

After a mathematical study (which follows) of the letters’ number equivalents more information was derived. As seen, it was erected to commemorate the great story of Baal. It also commemorates Henricus’ visit in 1116 and again in 1153, thirty years after his supposed death. In keeping with his humor, or some might say his ego, he designed and oversaw the construction himself.

LOCATED at 41.48̊N, 71.3̊W

Number Work and Proof of Transliteration

Certain numbers** appear when the letters in any Baalist inscription is converted to their numerical equivalent (gematria). The Newport Tower’s hidden letter/numbers are studied here. Numbers that are typically found are noted by a ✓ check mark. Simply put, if the numbers are not found, it is -not- a true Baalist inscription -or- the letters have been misinterpreted. Once the correct letters are proven via their gematria then the message about Baal can be read and also, possibly who wrote it and when. The result of this study is as noted above.

The proposed transcription of symbols imbedded in the arches of the Newport Tower is shown below. The numbers are studied for repetitions and pertinent numbers.

Norse Runic Gematria

Sum from T and around to first A = 79. From the same A to L is 23. So that it is 79,23.✓
Total sum is 98 or 89 in reverse which reminds one 89 x 89 = 7921.✓
The sum from the Δ around again to the 7 is 89. ✓ The 79 is also imbedded in the text.✓
Even more notable the 9,3,9 sum to 21 so it becomes 7921.✓
The sum from the first A to first I is 51.✓ The sum from H to the right and around to L is 86.✓
The 28 appears twice which is half of 56.✓ The sum from B to the left around to the I (by H) is 56.✓
The sum from first I to the last O is 43.✓
Note the 12’s at T, ID, DI. Note the 13 at AI just following the 12.
Note the 14 at IR. Lastly, note 7 and 9 sum to 16.
By summing adjoining numbers find: 13,17, 19, 15, 19,12, 16, 12, 12, 13, 13, 14, 9, 17…
On either side of the 16 is a 12, then 12, 12, 13, 13, 14.

Years 1112,1113, 1114, 1115,1116 and 1117 are all implied by the series. These numbers coincide with the period of time Henricus was believed to be in Vineland. In dated runic riddles the Golden Number (GN), Day Letter (DL) and Line # are used to denote a year since every year has specific values that can be found in Easter Tables (a calendar device created in 525 AD). The main legend on the Vineland Map has the phrase: ‘anno p. ss. nrj.’. This uses a 1, 2, 3 sequence and if it is Line #1, Golden Number (GN) 2 and Day Letter (DL) 3 then 1160 is indicated. This date repeats the idea of 16. For reasons seen below in the arch count study, this date is preferred. Without this corroborating interpretation, the other dates would remain as possibilities. This continues below.

The location can also be found in some runic gematria riddles. One cannot just ‘read’ the location. It is just a bit of bragging by the inscriber that he knew the correct coordinates. Hence, one must know the location beforehand! The values are: 41.48̊N, 71.3̊W. The sum from H to the last I is 41. The sum from B to T is 48. This suggests 41.48.✓

Similarly, 71 runs from the H to the end and around to the T. From the R back around and including the second A is 30. So 71.30.✓ It would seem the inscriber did know the correct coordinates.

The tower also spells out RHODI or Rhode. These letters have values: 5,7,4,3,9 = 28.✓

The Structure Contributes

The structure is set up to provide numbers as well. There are 8 pillars and 10 symbols that appear on five arches (two each). One symbol (the red stone) is in the inside and three arches have only one symbol for a total of 14 symbols. 4 x 14 = 56.✓ There are five arches with two symbols each or 10. There are three with one each for 3. Total 13.
There is a single round red stone on the interior. So 1. 1 and 13 ➟ 113 = 56.5 x 2.✓
There are 8 pillars and of course, 8 arches. A square of sides 5.656 has a diagonal of 8.✓
There are double symbols in 5 arches and single symbols in 3.
If the first arch with B is #1, then the arches with two symbols are found on: 3, 5, 6, 7,8. The ever present 3 is represented, then 56 and 7 x 8 is 56 again.✓ Similarly, if B is #1, then it is 1 symbol, then 1 symbol, then 2 symbols; or 112 which is twice 56.✓

One may again conclude after finding so many numbers typically found in Baalist documents that the transliteration is correct. The set of numbers is then 5,3,2,2,2,2,2,1,1,1 and 10. Let us view this another way. There are 3 arches with only 1 symbol. This is part of the story of Baal. There are 3 arcs.✓ The repeating 2’s suggest there were 2 Baals ✓ and two trips by Henricus. This leaves 2,2,2 which is 6 and with the 5, it is 56.✓ Another important number is 792. It can be found by adding.

Also note the number 532. This is the number of years in the Easter Table before the table starts to repeat. Its presence infers a date. The 1,2,3 suggests year 1160 as seen above. The date 1153 is also easily found here. The sum of the digits in 1153 is 10.✓ It is suggested that Henricus began his journey or the structure in 1153, and the tower was completed on or before 1160. This accounts for some of the confusion in the Vinland Map that says, ‘He remained a long time summer and winter and later returned toward Greenland.’ He was presumed dead in 1123 but reappears thirty years later.

Further information is here about Henricus. If the letter sequence is viewed using the Elder Futhark gematria we find:
18 4 4 21 17 9 11 23 11 4 11 5 24 …18
B  A A L  T H  I   D   I  A I R O… B ⇒… repeats..

It is believed Henricus died in 1123 because a new Bishop of Greenland was consecrated in 1124.

Find: I, DI, H 1123…… I die 1123 as Henricus.
I HID 1123 ……… I hide 1123.
I R O B …. I R.O.B …or… Born O.R. I. or I Rob.

This still leaves us plenty of mystery but the time period has narrowed to a window beginning in 1116 to around 1160.

Runic Inscription Study

This is a summary of Mongé’s decipherment. It is a group of five runes and two are joined runes: (HE) N (IK) R S or Henricus. There is an arrow to the right. The arrow is another feature common on Baalist inscriptions.** Using runic gematria, the year 1116 is found. The (HE) is 16. The S is 11. The R is 16. The (IK) is 15. The line number on the Easter Table is 15. The date 1116 is confirmed by the grouping 4 then 1 for GN 4 and DL 1. It is worth reading Mongé’s study (Mongé, pgs 128-129).


The Newport Tower’s embedded letters when converted to gematria reveal numbers typical to Baalist documents. Their transliteration and subsequent translation educate us in a long lost religion. That this tower displays these features severely narrows the field of possible builders. It also strongly suggests that the northern peoples, Norse and others, inhabited this region known as Rhode Island for some time and built an elegant edifice by the year 1160. The study implies that it was Bishop Henricus who designed and oversaw the construction. He apparently hid for thirty years. His Pagan / Baalist beliefs are apparent in the design of the structure. It would seem the Church Fathers discovered he was not as devout as presumed. Henricus also went by Eirikr Gnupsson. He could also have been known by R.O.B., or Rob. The first name is documented by records in Greenland. Indeed, he may have used other names. His skill as an architect is apparent to this day.

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*Easter Table PDF

Similar Articles by the Same Author

** For numeric background see:

**Freeborn, B.L., Validating North American Runic Inscriptions,, November 2022.

Freeborn, B.L., Ancient Riddles to Test Our Wits: The Secret Chamber,, January 2016. (Post)

Freeborn, B.L., Deciphering the Spirit Pond, Nomans Land and Narragansett Runic Inscriptions,, November 2022.

Freeborn, B.L., Et in Arcadia Ego – OUOSVAVV DM – Deciphered,, December 2022.

Freeborn, B.L., Kensington Rune Stone: A New Translation,, February 2023.

Freeborn, B.L., Runic Riddles: Time Capsules,, December 2022.

Freeborn, B.L. The Long Debated Bourne Stone,, January 2023.

Freeborn, B.L., The Nomans Land – Leif Eriksson Inscription,, December 2022.

Freeborn, B.L., The Narragansett Inscription: A Translation with its Date of Dedication, Author and Inscriber,, October 2022.

Freeborn, B.L., The Newport Tower: Finding the Date of Dedication, its Designer and Builder,, October 2022.

Freeborn, B.L., The Runic Riddles: Younger Futhork,, December 2022.


Creedon, Marc, Runologist Henrik Williams Examines the Newport Tower, Youtube, April 2015.

Eagan, James Alan, Elizabethan America: The John Dee Tower of 1583/ A Renaissance horologium in Newport, Rhode Island, Cosmopolite Press, Newport, Rhode Island, 2011.

*Monge, Alf & O.G. Landsverk, Norse Medieval Cryptography in Runic Carvings, Norseman Press, Glendale, California, 1967.

Syversen, Earl, Norse Runic Inscriptions with Their Long-forgotten Cryptography, The Vine Hill Press, Sebastopol, California, 1979.

Derogatory article by Aslak Liestol of Alf Mongé’s work:  and….

…Landsverk responded to these comments in Ancient Norse Messages pg. 126-129; and often in Runic Records of the Norsemen in America.

2 thoughts on “The Newport Tower: Finding the Year of Dedication, its Designer and Builder

  1. Randy says:

    I really hate it when a good argument is tainted by a big problem. In this case that is the coordinates. The Prime Meridian was established in 1884. In 1200 those coordinates would have no meaning. It was not selected based on “traditions” only politics.

    • Gilgemesh says:

      It was selected by the majority who were using it because it goes way way way way way back, which is somewhat different from what you have said.

      My friend and I have had this (heated) argument. It is a point many will make.

      Here are two points on my side of the argument: Greenwich is at latitude 51.47 (now). Smyth discusses in “The Great Pyramid” that the angle seems to be decreasing with time. (?)
      Compare to Angle of rise of Great Pyramid at 51.51 degrees.

      This number 51 repeated can be looked at as 5 + 1 =6 or 5 then 6. So it is 5656 which repeats the pattern seen in the numeric spelling of Yahweh (565,10).

      They seemed to be quite persistent in making this number (565) appear and had numerous ways of expressing it.

      Besides, it only matters if this group of people were using it at that time. How likely is it they were using the Paris meridian?
      Just some food for thought before tossing the location theory.

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