from the book Encylcopedia of Freemasonry & its Kindred Sciences
by Albert C. Mackey M. D.
Magi - The ancient Greek historians so term the hereditary priests among the Persians and Medians. The word is derived from mog or amp, signifying Priest in the Pehlevi language. The Illuminati first introduced the word into Freemasonry, and employed it in the nomenclature of their Degrees to signify men of superior wisdom.
Magi, The Three - The "Wise Men of the East" who came to Jerusalem, bringing gifts to the infant Jesus.
The traditional names of the three are Melchior, an old man, with a long beard, offering gold; Jasper, a beardless youth, rho offers frankincense; Balthazar, a black or Moor, with a large spreading beard, who tenders myrrh. The patron saints of travelers. "Tradition fixed their number at three, probably in allusion to the three races springing from the sons of Noah.
The Empress Helena caused their corpses to be transported to Milan from Constantinople. Frederick Barbarossa carried them to Cologne, the place of their special glora as the Three Kings of Cologne." Yonge. The three principal officers ruling the Society of the Rosicrucians are styled Magi.