Illuminati are a field of research which I know quite well [with freemasonry and secret, or reserved, societies], so I would like to put a bit of order in the matter. I would follow two paths of reasoning: what's historical and what's in some measure "invented". History The Order of Illuminati [original German definition: Illuminatenorden] had found at Ingolstadt [Germany] on May 1st 1776 by Johann Adam Weishaupt [1748-1830]. The difference between Illuminati and Freemasonry was that Illuminati didn't require to members to believe in a Suprem Being. Because of this also a large number of atheists joined the secret society, supporting anti-clerical politics. This fact is interesting to underline because Freemasonry was not and is not able to accept to support or to have a close relationship with such a society who denies the duty to believe in a Supreme Being [the notorious Great Architect]. This is a problem for conspiracy theory supporters ... The claim that ILLUMINATI were and are the highest level in the world of Secret Society is interesting, but so far there are no enough evidences to say it. Anyway I underline that during 1800 ILLUMINATI really tried and control Freemasonry in south Germany in order to obtain the control of local authorities. But when they tried and spread their influence out of Bavary / Baviera, they faced the opposition of the German Order [the real one, an issue of Catholic Church] who was absolutly out of control for ILLUMINATI ... NOTE: today also Freemasonry accepts atheists and the belief about a Supreme Being is no more totally fundamental, but in the age of the real historical ILLUMINATI ... it was, so ... And the inventions about Skull and Bones ... Don't ask me how this happened, but a curious society [not so secret, actually] of Bavaria of late XVIII / early XIX century has been linked to the Skull and Bones [US university secret society]. I do like to discuss about the symbol of Skull and Bones [which has become, for extension the symbol of ILLUMINATI; once again, don't ask the reaons of this rational, well, irrational jump]. Take a look at the number in the symbol ... 322. The official explanation is that it's the number of the lodge, but the lodge number 321 wasn't ... About that number imagination has worked a lot [from the address of an architect to ancient pagan cults]. A breif degression: the story of Skull and Bones begins in December of 1832. Upset by changes in the Phi Beta Kappa election process, a Yale senior named William Russell and a group of classmates decided to form the Eulogian Club as an American chapter of a German student organization. The club paid obeisance to Eulogia, the goddess of eloquence, who took her place in the pantheon upon the death of the orator Demosthenes, in 322 B.C., and who is said to have returned in a kind of Second Coming on the occasion of the society's inception. The Yale society fastened a picture of its symbol -- a skull and crossbones -- to the door of the chapel where it met. Today the number 322, recalling the date of Demosthenes' death, appears on society stationery. A part that also Aristotele died in 322 b.c. ... I would restart from Eulogia: The term has been applied in ecclesiastical usage to the object blessed. It was occasionally used in early times to signify the Holy Eucharist, and in this sense is especially frequent in the writings of St. Cyril of Alexandria. My comment: The Holy Eucharist is also symbolized by the Grail. The origin of this use is doubtless to be found in the words of St. Paul [1 Corinthians 10:16]; to poterion tes eulogias ho eulogoumen. But the more general use is for such objects as bread, wine, etc., which it was customary to distribute after the celebration of the Divine Mysteries. Bread so blessed, we learn from St. Augustine [De pecat. merit., ii, 26], was customarily distributed in his time to catechumens, and he even gives it the name of sacramentum, as having received the formal blessing of the Church: "Quod acceperunt catechumeni, quamvis non sit corpus Christi, sanctum tamen est, et sanctius quam cibi quibus alimur, quoniam sacramentum est" [(What the catechumens receive, though it is not the Body of Christ, is holy — holier, indeed, than our ordinary food, since it is a sacramentum]. So is the symbolic linkage Demosthenes > Eulogia a way to indicate the Holy Eucharist and the Grail?