consists of fraternal organisations
that trace their origins to the local guilds of stonemasons
that, from the end of the 14th century, regulated the qualifications of stonemasons and their interaction with authorities and clients. Freemasonry has been the subject of numerous conspiracy theories
throughout the years.
Modern Freemasonry broadly consists of two main recognition groups:
- Regular Freemasonry insists that a volume of scripture be open in a working lodge, that every member profess belief in a Supreme Being, that no women be admitted, and that the discussion of religion and politics be banned.
- Continental Freemasonry consists of the jurisdictions that have removed some, or all, of these restrictions.
The basic, local organisational unit of Freemasonry is the Lodge
. These private Lodges are usually supervised at the regional level (usually coterminous with a state, province, or national border) by a Grand Lodge
or Grand Orient. There is no international, worldwide Grand Lodge that supervises all of Freemasonry; each Grand Lodge is independent, and they do not necessarily recognise each other as being legitimate.
The degrees of Freemasonry retain the three grades of medieval craft guilds
, those of Apprentice
or fellow (now called Fellowcraft), and Master Mason
. The candidate of these three degrees is progressively taught the meanings of the symbols of Freemasonry and entrusted with grips, signs and words to signify to other members that he has been so initiated. The degrees are part allegorical morality play
and part lecture. Three degrees are offered by Craft (or Blue Lodge) Freemasonry, and members of any of these degrees are known as Freemasons
. There are additional degrees, which vary with locality and jurisdiction, and are usually administered by their own bodies (separate from those who administer the Craft degrees).
Lodge in Palazzo Roffia, Florence
, set out for French (Moderns) ritual
The Masonic lodge
is the basic organisational unit of Freemasonry.
The Lodge meets regularly and conducts the usual formal business of any small organisation (approve minutes, elect new members, appoint officers and take their reports, consider correspondence, bills and annual accounts, organise social and charitable events, etc.). In addition to such business, the meeting may perform a ceremony to confer a Masonic degree
or receive a lecture, which is usually on some aspect of Masonic history or ritual.
At the conclusion of the meeting, the Lodge may hold a formal dinner
, or festive board
, sometimes involving toasting and song.
The bulk of Masonic ritual
consists of degree ceremonies conferred in meetings guarded by a "Tyler" outside the door with a drawn sword to keep out unqualified intruders to Masonry. (This officer, the Tyler, is necessarily senior because at the door he may hear the highest degree ceremonies, and often a less affluent elderly Mason is offered the office to relieve his need for Masonic company, refreshments and/or fees, without having to pay a subscription. He takes minor parts at the door of all meetings and ceremonies.) Candidates for Freemasonry are progressively initiated
into Freemasonry, first in the degree of Entered Apprentice
. At some later time, in separate ceremonies, they will be passed
to the degree of Fellowcraft
; and then raised
to the degree of Master Mason
. In each of these ceremonies, the candidate must first take the new obligations of the degree, and is then entrusted with secret knowledge including passwords, signs and grips (secret handshakes
) confined to his new rank.
Another ceremony is the annual installation of the Master of the Lodge and his appointed or elected officers.
In some jurisdictions an Installed Master
elected, obligated and invested to preside over a Lodge, is valued as a separate rank with its own secrets and distinctive title and attributes; after each full year in the Chair the Master invests his elected successor and becomes a Past Master with privileges in the Lodge and Grand Lodge.
In other jurisdictions, the grade is not recognised, and no inner ceremony conveys new secrets during the installation of a new Master of the Lodge.
Most Lodges have some sort of social functions, allowing members, their partners and non-Masonic guests to meet openly.
Often coupled with these events is the discharge of every Mason's and Lodge's collective obligation to contribute to charity. This occurs at many levels, including in annual dues, subscriptions, fundraising events, Lodges and Grand Lodges. Masons and their charities contribute for the relief of need in many fields, such as education, health and old age.
Private Lodges form the backbone of Freemasonry, with the sole right to elect their own candidates for initiation as Masons or admission as joining Masons, and sometimes with exclusive rights over residents local to their premises. There are non-local Lodges where Masons meet for wider or narrower purposes, such or in association with some hobby, sport, Masonic research, business, profession, regiment or college. The rank of Master Mason also entitles a Freemason to explore Masonry further through other degrees, administered separately from the basic Craft or "Blue Lodge" degrees described here, but generally having a similar structure and meetings.
There is much diversity and little consistency in Freemasonry, because each Masonic jurisdiction is independent and sets its own rules and procedures while Grand Lodges have limited jurisdiction over their constituent member Lodges, which are ultimately private clubs. The wording of the ritual, the number of officers present, the layout of the meeting room, etc. varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. 
Almost all officers of a Lodge
are elected or appointed annually. Every Masonic Lodge has a Master, two Wardens, a treasurer and a secretary. There is also always a Tyler
, or outer guard, outside the door of a working Lodge, who may be paid to secure its privacy. Other offices vary between jurisdictions.
Each Masonic Lodge exists and operates according to ancient principles known as the Landmarks of Freemasonry
, which elude any universally accepted definition.
Joining a lodge
Candidates for Freemasonry will usually have met the most active members of the Lodge they are joining before being elected for initiation. The process varies among Grand Lodges, but in modern times interested people often look up a local Lodge through the Internet and will typically be introduced to a Lodge social function or open evening. The onus is upon candidates to ask to join; while they may be encouraged to ask, they may not be invited. Once the initial inquiry is made, a formal application may be proposed and seconded or announced in open Lodge and a more or less formal interview usually follows. If the candidate wishes to proceed, references are taken up during a period of notice so that members may enquire into the candidate's suitability and discuss it. Finally the Lodge takes an officially secret ballot on each application before a candidate is either initiated or rejected,
any single member's adverse vote, a "blackball" given secretly without stating a reason, or at most two, will suffice to reject a candidate.
A minimum requirement of every body of Freemasons is that each candidate must be "free and of good repute".
The question of freedom, a standard feudal requirement of mediaeval guilds, is nowadays one of independence: the object is that every Mason should be a proper and responsible person. 
Thus, each Grand Lodge has a standard minimum age, varying greatly and often subject to dispensation in particular cases. (For example, the Apollo University Lodge
at Oxford has always had dispensations to initiate undergraduates below 21, the former English legal age of majority and still the standard UGLE minimum: in the twenty-first century, all university lodges now share this privilege).
Additionally, most Grand Lodges require a candidate to declare a belief in a Supreme Being
, (although every candidate must interpret this condition in his own way, as all religious discussion is commonly prohibited). In a few cases, the candidate may be required to be of a specific religion. The form of Freemasonry most common in Scandinavia (known as the Swedish Rite
), for example, accepts only Christians.
At the other end of the spectrum, "Liberal" or Continental Freemasonry
, exemplified by the Grand Orient de France
, does not require a declaration of belief in any deity and accepts atheists (the cause of the distinction from the rest of Freemasonry).
During the ceremony of initiation, the candidate is required to undertake an obligation, swearing on the religious volume sacred to his personal faith to do good as a Mason. In the course of three degrees, Masons will promise to keep the secrets of their degree from lower degrees and outsiders, as far as practicality and the law permit, and to support a fellow Mason in distress.
There is formal instruction as to the duties of a Freemason, but on the whole, Freemasons are left to explore the craft in the manner they find most satisfying. Some will simply enjoy the dramatics, or the management and administration of the lodge, others will explore the history, ritual and symbolism of the craft, others will focus their involvement on their Lodge's social side, perhaps in association with other lodges, while still others will concentrate on the lodge's charitable functions.
Grand Lodges and Grand Orients are independent and sovereign bodies that govern Masonry in a given country, state or geographical area (termed a jurisdiction
). There is no single overarching governing body that presides over worldwide Freemasonry; connections between different jurisdictions depend solely on mutual recognition.
Freemasonry, as it exists in various forms all over the world, has a membership estimated by the United Grand Lodge of England
at around 6 million worldwide.
The fraternity is administratively organised into independent Grand Lodges
(or sometimes Grand Orients), each of which governs its own Masonic jurisdiction, which consists of subordinate (or constituent
) Lodges. The largest single jurisdiction, in terms of membership, is the United Grand Lodge of England
(with local organisation into Provincial Grand Lodges possessing a combined membership estimated at around a quarter million). The Grand Lodge of Scotland
and Grand Lodge of Ireland
(taken together) have approximately 150,000 members.
In the United States, total membership is just under 2 million.
Recognition, amity and regularity
Relations between Grand Lodges are determined by the concept of Recognition
. Each Grand Lodge maintains a list of other Grand Lodges that it recognises.
When two Grand Lodges recognise and are in Masonic communication with each other, they are said to be in amity
, and the brethren of each may visit each other's Lodges and interact Masonically. When two Grand Lodges are not in amity, inter-visitation is not allowed. There are many reasons one Grand Lodge will withhold or withdraw recognition from another, but the two most common are Exclusive Jurisdiction
Exclusive Jurisdiction is a concept whereby normally only one Grand Lodge will be recognised in any geographical area. If two Grand Lodges claim jurisdiction over the same area, the other Grand Lodges will have to choose between them, and they may not all decide to recognise the same one. (In 1849, for example, the Grand Lodge of New York split into two rival factions, each claiming to be the legitimate Grand Lodge. Other Grand Lodges had to choose between them until the schism was healed
). Exclusive Jurisdiction can be waived when the two overlapping Grand Lodges are themselves in Amity and agree to share jurisdiction (for example, since the Grand Lodge of Connecticut is in Amity with the Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Connecticut, the principle of Exclusive Jurisdiction does not apply, and other Grand Lodges may recognise both,
likewise the five distinct kinds of lodges in Germany have nominally united under one Grand Lodge, in order to obtain international recognition.
Freemasons' Hall, London, c. 1809
Regularity is a concept based on adherence to Masonic Landmarks
, the basic membership requirements, tenets and rituals of the craft. Each Grand Lodge sets its own definition of what these landmarks are, and thus what is Regular and what is Irregular (and the definitions do not necessarily agree between Grand Lodges). Essentially, every Grand Lodge will hold that its
landmarks (its requirements, tenets and rituals) are Regular, and judge other Grand Lodges based on those. If the differences are significant, one Grand Lodge may declare the other "Irregular" and withdraw or withhold recognition.
The most commonly shared rules for Recognition (based on Regularity) are those given by the United Grand Lodge of England in 1929:
- The Grand Lodge should be established by an existing regular Grand Lodge, or by at least three regular Lodges.
- A belief in a supreme being and scripture is a condition of membership.
- Initiates should take their vows on that scripture.
- Only men can be admitted, and no relationship exists with mixed Lodges.
- The Grand Lodge has complete control over the first three degrees, and is not subject to another body.
- All Lodges shall display a volume of scripture with the square and compasses while in session.
- There is no discussion of politics or religion.
- "Antient landmarks, customs and usages" observed.
Other degrees, orders, and bodies
Blue Lodges, known as Craft Lodges in the United Kingdom, offer only the three traditional degrees. In most jurisdictions, the rank of past or installed master is also conferred in Blue/Craft Lodges. Master Masons are able to extend their Masonic experience by taking further degrees, in appendant or other bodies whether or not approved by their own Grand Lodge.
In Britain, separate bodies administer each order. Freemasons are encouraged to join the Holy Royal Arch
, which is linked to Mark Masonry
in Scotland and Ireland, but completely separate in England. In England, the Royal Arch is closely associated with the Craft, automatically having many Grand Officers in common, including H.R.H the Duke of Kent
as both Grand Master of the Craft and First Grand Principal of the Royal Arch. The English Knights Templar and Cryptic Masonry share the Mark Grand Lodge offices and staff at Mark Masons Hall.
The Ancient and Accepted Rite (similar to the Scottish Rite), requires a member to proclaim the Trinitarian Christian faith, and is administered from Duke Street in London.
Ritual and symbolism
Example of Masonic symbols in Szprotawa
Freemasonry describes itself as a "beautiful system of morality, veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols".
The symbolism is mainly, but not exclusively, drawn from the tools of stonemasons – the square and compasses
, the level and plumb rule, the trowel
, the rough and smooth ashlars
, among others. Moral lessons are attributed to each of these tools, although the assignment is by no means consistent. The meaning of the symbolism is taught and explored through ritual,
and in lectures and articles by individual Masons who offer their personal insights and opinions.
All Freemasons begin their journey in the "craft" by being progressively "initiated", "passed" and "raised" into the three degrees of Craft, or Blue Lodge Masonry. During these three rituals, the candidate is progressively taught the Masonic symbols, and entrusted with grips or tokens, signs and words to signify to other Masons which degrees he has taken. The dramatic allegorical ceremonies include explanatory lectures, and revolve around the construction of the Temple of Solomon
, and the artistry and death of the chief architect, Hiram Abiff
. The degrees are those of "Entered apprentice", "Fellowcraft" and "Master Mason". While many different versions of these rituals exist, with various lodge layouts and versions of the Hiramic legend, each version is recognisable to any Freemason from any jurisdiction.
In some jurisdictions, the main themes of each degree are illustrated by tracing boards
. These painted depictions of Masonic themes are exhibited in the lodge according to which degree is being worked, and are explained to the candidate to illustrate the legend and symbolism of each degree.
The idea of Masonic brotherhood probably descends from a 16th-century legal definition of a "brother" as one who has taken an oath of mutual support to another. Accordingly, Masons swear at each degree to keep the contents of that degree secret, and to support and protect their brethren unless they have broken the law.
In most Lodges the oath or obligation is taken on a Volume of Sacred Law
, whichever book of divine revelation is appropriate to the religious beliefs of the individual brother (usually the Bible in the Anglo-American tradition). In Progressive
continental Freemasonry, books other than scripture are permissible, a cause of rupture between Grand Lodges.
Goose and Gridiron, where the Grand Lodge of London and Westminster, later called the Grand Lodge of England
, was founded
Since the middle of the 19th century, Masonic historians have sought the origins of the movement in a series of similar documents known as the Old Charges
, dating from the Regius Poem
in about 1425
to the beginning of the 18th century. Alluding to the membership of a lodge of operative masons, they relate it to a mythologised history of the craft, the duties of its grades, and the manner in which oaths of fidelity are to be taken on joining.
The 15th century also sees the first evidence of ceremonial regalia.
There is no clear mechanism by which these local trade organisations became today's Masonic Lodges. The earliest rituals and passwords known, from operative lodges around the turn of the 17th–18th centuries, show continuity with the rituals developed in the later 18th century by accepted or speculative Masons, as those members who did not practice the physical craft gradually came to be known.
The minutes of the Lodge of Edinburgh (Mary's Chapel) No. 1
in Scotland show a continuity from an operative lodge in 1598 to a modern speculative Lodge.
It is reputed to be the oldest Masonic Lodge in the world.
View of room at the Masonic Hall, Bury St Edmunds
, England, early 20th century, set up for a Holy Royal Arch convocation
Alternatively, Thomas De Quincey
in his work titled Rosicrucians and Freemasonry
put forward the theory that suggested that Freemasonry may have been an outgrowth of Rosicrucianism
. The theory had also been postulated in 1803 by German professor; J. G. Buhle.
The first Grand Lodge, the Grand Lodge of London and Westminster, later called the Grand Lodge of England
(GLE), was founded on St John's Day, 24 June 1717,
when four existing London Lodges met for a joint dinner. Many English Lodges joined the new regulatory body, which itself entered a period of self-publicity and expansion. However, many Lodges could not endorse changes that some Lodges of the GLE, which came to be known as Moderns, had made to the ritual, and a few of these formed a rival Grand Lodge on 17 July 1751, which they called the "Antient Grand Lodge of England
." These two Grand Lodges vied for supremacy until the Moderns promised to return to the ancient ritual. They united on 27 December 1813 to form the United Grand Lodge of England
The earliest known American lodges were in Pennsylvania
. The Collector for the port of Pennsylvania, John Moore, wrote of attending lodges there in 1715, two years before the putative formation of the first Grand Lodge in London. The Premier Grand Lodge of England
appointed a Provincial Grand Master for North America in 1731, based in Pennsylvania,
leading to the creation of the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania
Other lodges in the colony of Pennsylvania obtained authorisations from the later Antient Grand Lodge of England
, the Grand Lodge of Scotland
, and the Grand Lodge of Ireland
, which was particularly well represented in the travelling lodges of the British Army.
Many lodges came into existence with no warrant from any Grand Lodge, applying and paying for their authorisation only after they were confident of their own survival.
After the American Revolution
, independent U.S. Grand Lodges developed within each state. Some thought was briefly given to organising an overarching "Grand Lodge of the United States," with George Washington
, who was a member of a Virginian lodge, as the first Grand Master, but the idea was short-lived. The various state Grand Lodges did not wish to diminish their own authority by agreeing to such a body.
Freemasonry was imported to Jamaica
by British immigrants who colonized the island for over 300 years. In 1908, there were eleven recorded Masonic Lodges, which included three Grand Lodges, two Craft Lodges, and two Rose Croix Chapters.
During slavery, the Lodges were open to all "freeborn" men. According to the Jamaican 1834 census, that potentially included 5,000 free black men and 40,000 free people of colour (mixed race).
After the full abolition of slavery in 1838
, the Lodges were open to all Jamaican men of any race.
Jamaica also kept close relationships with Masons from other countries. Jamaican Freemasonry historian Jackie Ranston, noted that:
Jamaica served as an arms depot for the revolutionary forces when two Kingston Freemasons, Wellwood and Maxwell Hyslop, financed the campaigns of Simón Bolívar, the Liberator, to whom six Latin American Republics owe their independence". Bolívar himself was a Mason, enjoying contacts with Brethren in Spain, England, France, and Venezuela until after gaining power in Venezuela, he prohibited all secret societies in 1828 and included the Freemasons.
On 25 May 2017, Masons around the world celebrated the 300th anniversary of the fraternity. Jamaica hosted one of the regional gatherings for this celebration.
Prince Hall Freemasonry
Prince Hall Freemasonry exists because of the refusal of early American lodges to admit African Americans
. In 1775, an African American named Prince Hall
along with 14 other African-American men, was initiated into a British military lodge with a warrant from the Grand Lodge of Ireland
, having failed to obtain admission from the other lodges in Boston
. When the British military Lodge left North America after the end of the Revolution, those 15 men were given the authority to meet as a Lodge, but not to initiate Masons. In 1784, these individuals obtained a Warrant from the Premier Grand Lodge of England (GLE) and formed African Lodge, Number 459. When the UGLE
was formed in 1813, all U.S.-based Lodges were stricken from their rolls – largely because of the War of 1812
. Thus, separated from both UGLE and any concordantly recognised U.S. Grand Lodge, African Lodge retitled itself as the African Lodge, Number 1 – and became a de facto
Grand Lodge. (This lodge is not to be confused with the various Grand Lodges in Africa
.) As with the rest of U.S. Freemasonry, Prince Hall Freemasonry soon grew and organised on a Grand Lodge system for each state.
Widespread racial segregation
in 19th- and early 20th-century North America made it difficult for African Americans to join Lodges outside of Prince Hall jurisdictions – and impossible for inter-jurisdiction recognition between the parallel U.S. Masonic authorities. By the 1980s, such discrimination was a thing of the past. Today most U.S. Grand Lodges recognise their Prince Hall counterparts, and the authorities of both traditions are working towards full recognition.
The United Grand Lodge of England has no problem with recognising Prince Hall Grand Lodges.
While celebrating their heritage as lodges of African-Americans, Prince Hall is open to all men regardless of race or religion.
Emergence of Continental Freemasonry
Masonic initiation, Paris, 1745
English Freemasonry spread to France in the 1720s, first as lodges of expatriates and exiled Jacobites
, and then as distinctively French lodges that still follow the ritual of the Moderns
. From France and England, Freemasonry spread to most of Continental Europe during the course of the 18th century. The Grande Loge de France formed under the Grand Mastership of the Duke of Clermont, who exercised only nominal authority. His successor, the Duke of Orléans
, reconstituted the central body as the Grand Orient de France in 1773. Briefly eclipsed during the French Revolution
, French Freemasonry continued to grow in the next century,
at first under the leadership of Alexandre Francois Auguste de Grasse
, Comte de Grassy-Tilly. A career Army officer, he lived with his family in Charleston, South Carolina
from 1793 to the early 1800s, after leaving Saint-Domingue
, now Haiti, during the years of the Haitian Revolution
The ritual form on which the Grand Orient of France was based was abolished in England in the events leading to the formation of the United Grand Lodge of England
in 1813. However the two jurisdictions continued in amity, or mutual recognition, until events of the 1860s and 1870s drove a seemingly permanent wedge between them. In 1868 the Supreme Council of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of the State of Louisiana
appeared in the jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of Louisiana, recognised by the Grand Orient de France, but regarded by the older body as an invasion of their jurisdiction. The new Scottish Rite body admitted blacks. The resolution of the Grand Orient the following year that neither colour, race, nor religion could disqualify a man from Masonry prompted the Grand Lodge to withdraw recognition, and it persuaded other American Grand Lodges to do the same.
A dispute during the Lausanne Congress of Supreme Councils of 1875
prompted the Grand Orient de France to commission a report by a Protestant pastor, which concluded that, as Freemasonry was not a religion, it should not require a religious belief. The new constitutions read, "Its principles are absolute liberty of conscience and human solidarity", the existence of God and the immortality of the soul being struck out. It is possible that the immediate objections of the United Grand Lodge of England were at least partly motivated by the political tension between France and Britain at the time. The result was the withdrawal of recognition of the Grand Orient of France by the United Grand Lodge of England, a situation that continues today.
Not all French lodges agreed with the new wording. In 1894, lodges favouring the compulsory recognition of the Great Architect of the Universe formed the Grande Loge de France
In 1913, the United Grand Lodge of England recognised a new Grand Lodge of Regular Freemasons, a Grand Lodge that follows a similar rite to Anglo-American Freemasonry with a mandatory belief in a deity.
There are now three strands of Freemasonry in France, which extend into the rest of Continental Europe:-
- Liberal, also called adogmatic or progressive – Principles of liberty of conscience, and laicity, particularly the separation of the Church and State.
- Traditional – Old French ritual with a requirement for a belief in a Supreme Being. (This strand is typified by the Grande Loge de France).
- Regular – Standard Anglo-American ritual, mandatory belief in Supreme Being.
The term Continental Freemasonry
was used in Mackey's 1873 Encyclopedia of Freemasonry
to "designate the Lodges on the Continent of Europe which retain many usages which have either been abandoned by, or never were observed in, the Lodges of England, Ireland, and Scotland, as well as the United States of America".
Today, it is frequently used to refer to only the Liberal jurisdictions typified by the Grand Orient de France.
The majority of Freemasonry considers the Liberal (Continental) strand to be Irregular, and thus withhold recognition. The Continental lodges, however, did not want to sever masonic ties. In 1961, an umbrella organisation, Centre de Liaison et d'Information des Puissances maçonniques Signataires de l'Appel de Strasbourg
(CLIPSAS) was set up, which today provides a forum for most of these Grand Lodges and Grand Orients worldwide. Included in the list of over 70 Grand Lodges and Grand Orients are representatives of all three of the above categories, including mixed and women's organisations. The United Grand Lodge of England does not communicate with any of these jurisdictions, and expects its allies to follow suit. This creates the distinction between Anglo-American and Continental Freemasonry.
In the early 20th century Freemasonry was an influential semi-secret force in Italian politics with a strong presence among professionals and the middle class across Italy, as well as among the leadership of the parliament, public administration, and the army. The two main organisations were the Grand Orient and the Grand Lodge of Italy. They had 25,000 members in 500 or more lodges. Freemasons took on the challenge of mobilizing the press, public opinion and the leading political parties in support of Italy's joining the Allies
of the First World War in 1914–1915. Traditionally, they promoted Italian nationalism focused on unification, and undermining the power of the Catholic Church. In 1914-15 they dropped the traditional pacifistic rhetoric and used instead the powerful language of Italian nationalism
. Freemasonry had always promoted cosmopolitan universal values, and by 1917 onwards they demanded a League of Nations
to promote a new post-war universal order based upon the peaceful coexistence of independent and democratic nations.
Freemasonry and women
The status of women in the old guilds and corporations of medieval masons remains uncertain. The principle of "femme sole" allowed a widow to continue the trade of her husband, but its application had wide local variations, such as full membership of a trade body or limited trade by deputation or approved members of that body.
In masonry, the small available evidence points to the less empowered end of the scale.
At the dawn of the Grand Lodge era
, during the 1720s, James Anderson
composed the first printed constitutions for Freemasons
, the basis for most subsequent constitutions, which specifically excluded women from Freemasonry.
As Freemasonry spread, women began to be added to the Lodges of Adoption
by their husbands who were continental masons, which worked three degrees with the same names as the men's but different content. The French officially abandoned the experiment in the early 19th century.
Later organisations with a similar aim emerged in the United States, but distinguished the names of the degrees from those of male masonry.
was initiated into Freemasonry in 1882, then resigned to allow her lodge to rejoin their Grand Lodge. Having failed to achieve acceptance from any masonic governing body, she and Georges Martin
started a mixed masonic lodge that worked masonic ritual. Annie Besant
spread the phenomenon to the English-speaking world.
Disagreements over ritual led to the formation of exclusively female bodies of Freemasons in England, which spread to other countries. Meanwhile, the French had re-invented Adoption as an all-female lodge in 1901, only to cast it aside again in 1935. The lodges, however, continued to meet, which gave rise, in 1959, to a body of women practising continental Freemasonry.
In general, Continental Freemasonry is sympathetic to Freemasonry amongst women, dating from the 1890s when French lodges assisted the emergent co-masonic movement by promoting enough of their members to the 33rd degree of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite
to allow them, in 1899, to form their own grand council, recognised by the other Continental Grand Councils of that Rite.
The United Grand Lodge of England issued a statement in 1999 recognising the two women's grand lodges there, The Order of Women Freemasons
and The Honourable Fraternity of Ancient Freemasons,
to be regular in all but the participants. While they were not, therefore, recognised as regular, they were part of Freemasonry "in general".
The attitude of most regular Anglo-American grand lodges remains that women Freemasons are not legitimate Masons.
In 2018 guidance was released by the United Grand Lodge of England
stating that, in regard to transgender women, "A Freemason who after initiation ceases to be a man does not cease to be a Freemason".
The guidance also states that transgender men are allowed to apply to become Freemasons.
(alternatively called Anti-Freemasonry
) has been defined as "opposition to Freemasonry",
but there is no homogeneous anti-Masonic movement. Anti-Masonry consists of widely differing criticisms from diverse (and often incompatible) groups who are hostile to Freemasonry in some form. Critics have included religious groups, political groups, and conspiracy theorists
, in particular, those espousing Masonic conspiracy theories
or the Judeo-Masonic conspiracy theory
. Certain prominent Anti-Masons, such as Nesta Helen Webster
(1876–1960), have exclusively criticized "Continental Masonry" while considering "Regular Masonry" an honorable association.
There have been many disclosures and exposés dating as far back as the 18th century. These often lack context,
may be outdated for various reasons,
or could be outright hoaxes
on the part of the author, as in the case of the Taxil hoax
These hoaxes and exposés have often become the basis for criticism of Masonry, often religious or political in nature or are based on suspicion of corrupt conspiracy of some form. The political opposition that arose after the American "Morgan Affair
" in 1826 gave rise to the term Anti-Masonry
, which is still in use in America today, both by Masons in referring to their critics and as a self-descriptor by the critics themselves.
Freemasonry has attracted criticism from theocratic
states and organised religions for supposed competition with religion, or supposed heterodoxy
within the fraternity itself and has long been the target of conspiracy theories
, which assert Freemasonry to be an occult
and evil power.
Christianity and Freemasonry
Although members of various faiths cite objections, certain Christian denominations
have had high-profile negative attitudes to Masonry, banning or discouraging their members from being Freemasons.
In 1983, the Church issued a new code of canon law
. Unlike its predecessor, the 1983 Code of Canon Law
did not explicitly name Masonic orders among the secret societies
it condemns. It states: "A person who joins an association which plots against the Church is to be punished with a just penalty; one who promotes or takes office in such an association is to be punished with an interdict
." This named omission of Masonic orders caused both Catholics and Freemasons to believe that the ban on Catholics becoming Freemasons may have been lifted, especially after the perceived liberalisation of Vatican II
However, the matter was clarified when Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger (later Pope Benedict XVI
), as the Prefect
of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith
, issued a Declaration on Masonic Associations
, which states: "... the Church's negative judgment in regard to Masonic association remains unchanged since their principles have always been considered irreconcilable with the doctrine of the Church and therefore membership in them remains forbidden. The faithful who enrol in Masonic associations are in a state of grave sin and may not receive Holy Communion
For its part, Freemasonry has never objected to Catholics joining their fraternity. Those Grand Lodges in amity with UGLE deny the Church's claims. The UGLE now states that "Freemasonry does not seek to replace a Mason's religion or provide a substitute for it."
In contrast to Catholic allegations of rationalism and naturalism, Protestant objections are more likely to be based on allegations of mysticism
, and even Satanism
Masonic scholar Albert Pike
is often quoted (in some cases misquoted) by Protestant anti-Masons as an authority for the position of Masonry on these issues.
However, Pike, although undoubtedly learned, was not a spokesman for Freemasonry and was also controversial among Freemasons in general. His writings represented his personal opinion only, and furthermore an opinion grounded in the attitudes and understandings of late 19th century Southern Freemasonry of the US. Notably, his book carries in the preface a form of disclaimer from his own Grand Lodge. No one voice has ever spoken for the whole of Freemasonry.
Free Methodist Church
founder B.T. Roberts
was a vocal opponent of Freemasonry in the mid 19th century. Roberts opposed the society on moral grounds and stated, "The god of the lodge is not the God of the Bible." Roberts believed Freemasonry was a "mystery
" or "alternate" religion and encouraged his church not to support ministers who were Freemasons. Freedom from secret societies is one of the "frees" upon which the Free Methodist Church was founded.
Since the founding of Freemasonry, many Bishops of the Church of England
have been Freemasons, such as Archbishop Geoffrey Fisher
In the past, few members of the Church of England would have seen any incongruity in concurrently adhering to Anglican Christianity and practising Freemasonry. In recent decades, however, reservations about Freemasonry have increased within Anglicanism, perhaps due to the increasing prominence of the evangelical wing of the church. The former archbishop of Canterbury
, Dr Rowan Williams
, appeared to harbour some reservations about Masonic ritual, whilst being anxious to avoid causing offence to Freemasons inside and outside the Church of England. In 2003 he felt it necessary to apologise to British Freemasons after he said that their beliefs were incompatible with Christianity and that he had barred the appointment of Freemasons to senior posts in his diocese when he was Bishop of Monmouth.
In 1933, the Orthodox Church of Greece
officially declared that being a Freemason constitutes an act of apostasy
and thus, until he repents, the person involved with Freemasonry cannot partake of the Eucharist
. This has been generally affirmed throughout the whole Eastern Orthodox Church. The Orthodox critique of Freemasonry agrees with both the Catholic and Protestant versions: "Freemasonry cannot be at all compatible with Christianity as far as it is a secret organisation, acting and teaching in mystery and secret and deifying rationalism."
Regular Freemasonry has traditionally not responded to these claims, beyond the often repeated statement that those Grand Lodges in amity with UGLE explicitly adhere to the principle that "Freemasonry is not a religion, nor a substitute for religion. There is no separate 'Masonic deity,' and there is no separate proper name for a deity in Freemasonry."
Christian men, who were discouraged from joining the Freemasons by their Churches or who wanted a more religiocentric society, joined similar fraternal organisations, such as the Knights of Columbus
for Catholic Christians, and the Loyal Orange Institution
for Protestant Christians,
although these fraternal organisations have been "organized in part on the style of and use many symbols of Freemasonry".
Islam and Freemasonry
Many countries with a majority Muslim population do not allow Masonic establishments within their borders. However, countries such as Turkey
have established Grand Lodges,
while in countries such as Malaysia
there are District Grand Lodges operating under a warrant from an established Grand Lodge.
Masonic lodges existed in Iraq
as early as 1917, when the first lodge under the United Grand Lodge of England
(UGLE) was opened. Nine lodges under UGLE existed by the 1950s, and a Scottish lodge was formed in 1923. However, the position changed following the revolution, and all lodges were forced to close in 1965.
This position was later reinforced under Saddam Hussein
; the death penalty was "prescribed" for those who "promote or acclaim Zionist principles, including freemasonry, or who associate [themselves] with Zionist organisations."
In 1799, English Freemasonry almost came to a halt due to Parliamentary proclamation. In the wake of the French Revolution
, the Unlawful Societies Act
banned any meetings of groups that required their members to take an oath
The Grand Masters of both the Moderns and the Antients Grand Lodges called on Prime Minister William Pitt
(who was not a Freemason) and explained to him that Freemasonry was a supporter of the law and lawfully constituted authority and was much involved in charitable work. As a result, Freemasonry was specifically exempted from the terms of the Act, provided that each private lodge's Secretary placed with the local "Clerk of the Peace" a list of the members of his lodge once a year. This continued until 1967, when the obligation of the provision was rescinded by Parliament
Freemasonry in the United States faced political pressure following the 1826 kidnapping of William Morgan
by Freemasons and his subsequent disappearance. Reports of the "Morgan Affair", together with opposition to Jacksonian democracy
(Andrew Jackson was a prominent Mason), helped fuel an Anti-Masonic movement. The short-lived Anti-Masonic Party
was formed, which fielded candidates for the presidential elections of 1828 and 1832.
Lodge in Erlangen, Germany. First meeting after World War II with guests from US, France and Czechoslovakia, 1948.
In Italy, Freemasonry has become linked to a scandal concerning the Propaganda Due
lodge (a.k.a. P2). This lodge was chartered by the Grande Oriente d'Italia
in 1877, as a lodge for visiting Masons unable to attend their own lodges. Under Licio Gelli
's leadership, in the late 1970s, P2 became involved in the financial scandals that nearly bankrupted the Vatican Bank
. However, by this time the lodge was operating independently and irregularly, as the Grand Orient had revoked its charter and expelled Gelli in 1976.
Freemasonry is viewed with distrust even in some modern democracies.
In the UK, Masons working in the justice system, such as judges and police officers, were from 1999 to 2009 required to disclose their membership.
While a parliamentary inquiry found that there had been no evidence of wrongdoing, the government believed that Masons' potential loyalties to support fellow Masons should be transparent to the public.
The policy of requiring a declaration of masonic membership by applicants for judicial office (judges and magistrates) was ended in 2009 by Justice Secretary Jack Straw
(who had initiated the requirement in the 1990s). Straw stated that the rule was considered disproportionate, since no impropriety or malpractice had been shown as a result of judges being Freemasons.
Freemasonry is both successful and controversial in France. As of the early 21st century, membership is rising, but reporting of it in popular media is often negative.
The preserved records of the Reichssicherheitshauptamt
(the Reich Security Main Office) show the persecution of Freemasons during the Holocaust
RSHA Amt VII (Written Records), overseen by Professor Franz Six
, was responsible for "ideological" tasks, by which was meant the creation of antisemitic and anti-Masonic propaganda. While the number of victims is not accurately known, historians estimate that between 80,000 and 200,000 Freemasons were killed under the Nazi regime
Masonic concentration camp inmates were classified as political prisoners and wore an inverted red triangle
Hitler believed Freemasons had succumbed to Jews conspiring against Germany.
The small blue forget-me-not
flower was first used by the Grand Lodge Zur Sonne
in 1926, as a Masonic emblem at the annual convention in Bremen
. In 1938, a forget-me-not badge, made by the same factory as the Masonic badge, was chosen for the Nazi Party's Winterhilfswerk
, the annual charity drive of the National Socialist People's Welfare
(the welfare branch of the Nazi party). This coincidence enabled Freemasons to wear the forget-me-not badge as a secret sign of membership.
After World War II
, the forget-me-not flower was used again as a Masonic emblem in 1948 at the first Annual Convention of the United Grand Lodges of Germany
in 1948. The badge is now sometimes worn in the coat lapel by Freemasons around the world to remember all who suffered in the name of Freemasonry, especially those during the Nazi era.
- ^ "Fourth International Conference at UCLA". Masons of California. Archived from the original on 24 January 2015. Retrieved 8 July 2020.
- ^ "What is Freemasonry". www.chevalierramsay.be. Retrieved 14 June 2017.
- ^ a b c d e f "Frequently Asked Questions"Archived 22 October 2013 at the Wayback Machine United Grand Lodge of England retrieved 30 October 2013
- ^ "Materials: Papers and Speakers" Archived 11 November 2016 at the Wayback MachineProvincial Grand Lodge of East Lancashire, retrieved 30 October 2013
- ^ "Gentlemen, please be upstanding" Toasts for the festive board, Grand Lodge of British Columbia and Yukon retrieved 30 October 2013
- ^ "Words, Grips and Signs" H. L. Haywood, Symbolical Masonry, 1923, Chapter XVIII, Sacred Texts website, retrieved 9 January 2014
- ^ "Past Master" Masonic Dictionary, retrieved 31 October 2013
- ^ "Maçon célèbre : le Maître Installé" GADLU blog Maçonnique, 3 March 2013, retrieved 2 November 2013
- ^ For instance "Introduction into Freemasonry"Archived 9 November 2013 at the Wayback Machine, Provincial Grand Lodge of Hertfordshire, retrieved 8 November 2013
- ^ "Charitable work" Archived 22 October 2013 at the Wayback Machine, UGLE, retrieved 8 November 2013
- ^ (editors) John Hamill and Robert Gilbert, Freemasonry, Angus, 2004, pp 214–220
- ^ a b c d e f Michael Johnstone, The Freemasons, Arcturus, 2005, pp. 101–120
- ^ "Les Officiers de Loge" Maconnieke Encyclopedie, retrieved 31 October 2013
- ^ Alain Bernheim, "My Approach to Masonic History", Pietre Stones, from address of 2011, retrieved 8 November 2013
- ^ a b "How to become a Freemason", Masonic Lodge of Education, retrieved 20 November 2013
- ^ "Comment devenir franc-maçon?", Grande Loge de Luxembourg, retrieved 23 November 2013
- ^ "Swedish Rite FAQ", Grand Lodge of British Columbia & Yukon, Accessed 19 November 2013
- ^ "Faut-il croire en Dieu?", Foire aux Questions, Grand Orient de France, Retrieved 23 November 2013
- ^ a b Jack Buta, "The God Conspiracy, The Politics of Grand Lodge Foreign Relations", Pietre-Stones, retrieved 23 November 2013
- ^ "Social events and activities" Archived 9 January 2014 at the Wayback Machine, Hampshire Province, retrieved 20 November 2013
- ^ "Who are Masons, and what do they do?", MasonicLodges.com, retrieved 20 November 2013
- ^ (editors) John Hamill and Robert Gilbert, Freemasonry, Angus, 2004, Glossary, p247
- ^ "Difficult Questions; Is Freemasonry a Global Conspiracy?" Archived 3 June 2015 at the Wayback Machine MasterMason.com, retrieved 18 November 2013
- ^ Hodapp, Christopher. Freemasons for Dummies. Indianapolis: Wiley, 2005. p. 52.
- ^ Campbell, Donald G.; Committee on Ritual. "The Master Mason; Irregular and Clandestine Lodges". Handbook for Candidate's Coaches(excerpt). Grand Lodge F.&A.M. of California. Retrieved 8 May 2007.
- ^ Jim Bantolo, "On Recognition" Archived 14 March 2008 at the Wayback Machine, Masonic Short Talk, Pilar lodge, 2007, retrieved 25 November 2013
- ^ Ossian Lang, "History of Freemasonry in the State of New York" (pdf), 1922, pp135-140, Masonic Trowel eBooks
- ^ "Exclusive Jurisdiction", Paul M. Bessel, 1998, retrieved 25 November 2013
- ^ "Regularity in Freemasonry and its Meaning", Grand Lodge of Latvia, retrieved 25 November 2013
- ^ Tony Pope, "Regularity and Recognition", from Freemasonry Universal, by Kent Henderson & Tony Pope, 1998, Pietre Stones website, retrieved 25 November 2013
- ^ UGLE Book of Constitutions, "Basic Principles for Grand Lodge Recognition", any year since 1930, page numbers may vary.
- ^ Robert L.D. Cooper, Cracking the Freemason's Code, Rider 2006, p229
- ^ Michael Johnstone, The Freemasons, Arcturus, 2005, pp 95–98
- ^ J S M Ward, "The Higher Degrees Handbook", Pietre Stones, retrieved 11 November 2013
- ^ "The Supreme Council". www.sc33.org.uk. Retrieved 17 June 2021.
- ^ "What is Freemasonry?" Archived 9 January 2014 at the Wayback Machine Grand Lodge of Alberta retrieved 7 November 2013
- ^ Mark S. Dwor, "Some thoughts on the history of the Tracing Boards", Grand Lodge of British Columbia and Yukon, 1999, retrieved 7 November 2013
- ^ Robert L.D. Cooper, Cracking the Freemason's Code, Rider 2006, p79
- ^ "Masonic U.S. Recognition of French Grand Lodges in the 20th century" Archived 10 April 2006 at the Wayback Machine, Paul M. Bessel. retrieved 8 November 2013
- ^ Andrew Prescott, "The Old Charges Revisited", from Transactions of the Lodge of Research No. 2429 (Leicester), 2006, Pietre-Stones Masonic Papers, retrieved 12 October 2013
- ^ A. F. A. Woodford, preface to William James Hughan, The Old Charges of British Freemasons, London, 1872
- ^ John Yarker (1909). The Arcane Schools. Manchester. pp. 341–342.
- ^ Robert L.D. Cooper, Cracking the Freemason's Code, Rider 2006, Chapter 4, p 53
- ^ David Murray Lyon, History of the Lodge of Edinburgh (Mary's Chapel) No 1, Blackwood 1873, Preface
- ^ Stevenson, David (1988). The Origins of Freemasonry. Cambridge University Press. pp. 38–44. ISBN 0521396549.
- ^ Dafoe, Stephen. "Rosicrucians and Freemasonry | Masonic Dictionary | www.masonicdictionary.com". www.masonicdictionary.com. Retrieved 14 June 2017.
- ^ Hall, Manly P. (2010). The Secret Teachings of All Ages: An Encyclopedic Outline of Masonic, Hermetic, Qabbalistic and Rosicrucian Symbolical Philosophy. Courier Corporation. ISBN 9780486471433.
- ^ "History of Freemasonry timeline". United Grand Lodge of England. Retrieved 12 June 2018.
- ^ S. Brent Morris (2006). The Complete Idiot's Guide to Freemasonry. Alpha/Penguin Books. p. 27. ISBN 1-59257-490-4.
- ^ I. R. Clarke, "The Formation of the Grand Lodge of the Antients", Ars Quatuor Coronatorum, vol 79 (1966), p. 270-73, Grand Lodge of British Columbia and Yukon, retrieved 28 June 2012
- ^ H. L. Haywood, "Various Grand Lodges", The Builder, vol X no 5, May 1924, Pietre Stones website, retrieved 9 January 2014
- ^ Robert L.D. Cooper, Cracking the Freemason's Code, Rider 2006, Chapter 1, p 17
- ^ Francis Vicente, An Overview of Early Freemasonry in Pennsylvania, Pietre-Stones, retrieved 15 November 2013
- ^ History of Freemasons in Nova Scotia
- ^ Werner Hartmann, "History of St. John's Lodge No. 1", St. John's Lodge No. 1, A.Y.M., 2012, retrieved 16 November 2013
- ^ M. Baigent and R. Leigh, The Temple and the Lodge, Arrow 1998, Appendix 2, pp360-362, "Masonic Field Lodges in Regiments in America", 1775–77
- ^ Robert L.D. Cooper, Cracking the Freemason's Code, Rider 2006, p190
- ^ Bullock, Steven C.; Institute of Early American History and Culture (Williamsburg, Va.) (1996). Revolutionary brotherhood: Freemasonry and the transformation of the American social order, 1730–1840. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press. ISBN 978-0-8078-4750-3. OCLC 33334015.
- ^ a b Handbook of Jamaica. Google Books: Jamaica Government. 1908. p. 449.
- ^ Handbook of Jamaica. Google Books: Jamaica Government. 1908. p. 33.
- ^ a b "Charting The History Of Freemasons In Jamaica". Jamaica Gleaner Newspaper. 10 December 2017.
- ^ "English Freemasons To Celebrate Their 300th Year In Jamaica". Jamaica Gleaner Newspaper. 18 April 2017.
- ^ Johnson, Lawrence (1996). "Who is Prince Hall? And other well known Prince Hall Masons". Archived from the original on 2 June 2007. Retrieved 14 November 2005.
- ^ "Prince Hall History Education Class" by Raymond T. Coleman(pdf) Archived 3 March 2016 at the Wayback Machine retrieved 13 October 2013
- ^ Bessel, Paul M. "Prince Hall Masonry Recognition details: Historical Maps". Retrieved 14 November 2005.
- ^ "Foreign Grand Lodges", UGLE Website, retrieved 25 October 2013
- ^ "History of Prince Hall Masonry: What is Freemasonry" Archived 19 November 2013 at the Wayback Machine, Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge Free and Accepted Masons Jurisdiction of Pennsylvania, retrieved 25 October 2013
- ^ Histoire de la Franc-maçonnerie, Grand Orient de France, retrieved 12 November 2013
- ^ Paul Bessel, "U.S. Recognition of French Grand Lodges in the 1900s" Archived 10 April 2006 at the Wayback Machine, from Heredom: The Transactions of the Scottish Rite Research Society, vol 5, 1996, pp 221–244, Paul Bessel website, retrieved 12 November 2013
- ^ Historique de la GLDF, Grande Loge de France, retrieved 14 November 2013
- ^ Alain Bernheim, "My approach to Masonic History", Manchester 2011, Pietre-Stones, retrieved 14 November 2013
- ^ "Liberal Grand Lodges" Archived 20 January 2015 at the Wayback Machine, French Freemasonry, retrieved 14 November 2013
- ^ "Traditional Grand Lodges" Archived 14 July 2014 at the Wayback Machine, French Freemasonry, retrieved 14 November 2013
- ^ "Regular Grand Lodges" Archived 20 January 2015 at the Wayback Machine, French Freemasonry, retrieved 14 November 2013
- ^ "Continental Lodges",Mackey's Encyclopedia of Freemasonry, retrieved 30 November 2013
- ^ For instance "Women in Freemasonry, and Continental Freemasonry", Corn Wine and Oil, June 2009, retrieved 30 November 2013
- ^ Tony Pope, "At a Perpetual Distance: Liberal and Adogmatic Grand Lodges", Presented to Waikato Lodge of Research No 445 at Rotorua, New Zealand, on 9 November 2004, as the annual Verrall Lecture, and subsequently published in the Transactions of the lodge, vol 14 #1, March 2005, Pietre-Stones, retrieved 13 November 2013
- ^ "Current members" CLIPSAS, retrieved 14 November 2014
- ^ Fulvio Conti, "From Universalism to Nationalism: Italian Freemasonry and the Great War." Journal of Modern Italian Studies 20.5 (2015): 640-662.
- ^ Antonia Frazer, The Weaker Vessel, Mandarin paperbacks, 1989, pp108-109
- ^ for example, see David Murray Lyon, History of the lodge of Edinburgh, Blackwood, Edinburgh, 1873, pp 121–123
- ^ Anderson, James (1734) . Paul Royster (ed.). The Constitutions of the Free-Masons (Philadelphia ed.). Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Benjamin Franklin. p. 49. Retrieved 12 August 2013. The Persons admitted Members of a Lodge must be good and true Men, free-born, and of mature and discreet Age, no Bondmen, no Women, no immoral or scandalous Men, but of good Report.
- ^ "Adoptive Freemasonry" Entry from Mackey's Lexicon of Freemasonry
- ^ a b Barbara L. Thames, "A History of Women's Masonry", Phoenix Masonry, retrieved 5 March 2013
- ^ "Order of the Eastern Star" Masonic Dictionary, retrieved 9 January 2013
- ^ "Maria Deraismes (1828–1894)", Droit Humain, retrieved 5 March 2013. (French Language)
- ^ Jeanne Heaslewood, "A Brief History of the Founding of Co-Freemasonry", 1999, Phoenix Masonry, retrieved 12 August 2013
- ^ "Histoire du Droit Humain", Droit Humain, retrieved 12 August 2013
- ^ "The Order of Women Freemasons | Womens Freemasonry | Nationwide". www.owf.org.uk. Retrieved 17 June 2021.
- ^ "HFAF | Freemasonry for Women". Retrieved 17 June 2021.
- ^ "Text of UGLE statement" Archived 4 June 2013 at the Wayback Machine, Honourable Fraternity of Ancient Freemasons, retrieved 12 August 2012
- ^ Karen Kidd, Haunted Chambers: the Lives of Early Women Freemasons, Cornerstone, 2009, pp204-205
- ^ a b Damien Gayle (2018). "Freemasons to admit women – but only if they first joined as men | UK news". The Guardian. Retrieved 1 August 2018.
- ^ "Anti-Masonry" – Oxford English Dictionary (Compact Edition), Oxford University Press, 1979, p. 369
- ^ "Antimasonry – Definition of Antimasonry by Webster Dictionary". Webster-dictionary.net. Retrieved 8 September 2011.
- ^ Heimbichner, S. Craig; Parfrey, Adam (2012). Ritual America: Secret Brotherhoods and Their Influence on American Society: A Visual Guide. Feral House. p. 187. ISBN 978-1936239153.
- ^ Morris, S. Brent (2006). The Complete Idiot's Guide to Freemasonry. New York: Alpha Books. pp. 85 (also discussed in chapters 13 and 16). ISBN 978-1-59257-490-2. OCLC 68042376.
- ^ Robinson, John J. (1993). A Pilgrim's Path. New York: M. Evans. p. 129. ISBN 978-0-87131-732-2. OCLC 27381296.
- ^ de Hoyos, Arturo; S. Brent Morris (18 August 2002). "Leo Taxil Hoax –Bibliography". Grand Lodge of British Columbia and Yukon. Retrieved 7 July 2007. Lists many books which perpetuate Masonic ritual hoaxes.
- ^ "Anti-mason" infoplease.com retrieved 9 January 2014
- ^ Morris, S. Brent; The Complete Idiot's Guide to Freemasonry, Alpha books, 2006, p. 204.
- ^ Cardinal Law, Bernard (19 April 1985). "Letter of 19 April 1985 to U.S. Bishops Concerning Masonry". CatholicCulture.org. Retrieved 9 July 2007.
- ^ Canon 2335, 1917 Code of Canon Law from "Canon Law regarding Freemasonry, 1917–1983". Grand Lodge of British Columbia and Yukon.
- ^ McInvale, Reid (1991). "Roman Catholic Church Law Regarding Freemasonry". Transactions of Texas Lodge of Research. 27: 86–97. OCLC 47204246.
- ^ Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith, Declaration on Masonic AssociationsArchived 14 March 2001 at the Wayback Machine, 26 November 1983, retrieved 26 November 2015
- ^ Jack Chick. "The Curse of Baphomet". Retrieved 29 September 2007.
- ^ Arturo de Hoyos and S. Brent Morris (2004). Is it True What They Say About Freemasonry, 2nd edition (revised), chapter 1. M. Evans & Company. Archived from the original on 2 December 2013.
- ^ Pike, Albert; T. W. Hugo; Scottish Rite (Masonic order). Supreme Council of the Thirty-Third Degree for the Southern Jurisdiction (1950) . Morals and Dogma of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry. Washington, DC: House of the Temple. OCLC 12870276. In preparing this work [Pike] has been about equally Author and Compiler. (p. iii.) ... The teachings of these Readings are not sacramental, so far as they go beyond the realm of Morality into those of other domains of Thought and Truth. The Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite uses the word "Dogma" in its true sense of doctrine, or teaching; and is not dogmatic in the odious sense of that term. Everyone is entirely free to reject and dissent from whatsoever herein may seem to him to be untrue or unsound (p. iv)
- ^ Snyder, Howard (2006). Populist Saints. Grand Rapids, Michigan: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company. p. 727.
- ^ Beresiner, Yasha (July 2006). "Archbishop Fisher – A Godly man and a Brother". Masonic Quarterly Magazine (18). Retrieved 7 May 2007.
- ^ Hastings, Chris; Elizabeth Day (20 April 2003). "Rowan Williams apologises to Freemasons". The Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 23 November 2007. Retrieved 9 July 2007.
- ^ "Freemasonry: Official Statement of the Church of Greece (1933)". Orthodoxinfo.com. 12 October 1933. Retrieved 15 January 2011.
- ^ "Freemasonry and Religion" (PDF). United Grand Lodge of England. Retrieved 2 November 2013.
- ^ a b Fields, Rona M. (1980). Northern Ireland: Society Under Siege. Transaction Publishers. p. 113. ISBN 978-1412845090.
- ^ a b c Sands, David R (1 July 2004). "Saddam to be formally charged". The Washington Times. Retrieved 18 June 2006.
- ^ Prescott, Andrew. The Study of Freemasonry as a New Academic Discipline. pp. 13–14. Retrieved 18 December 2008.
- ^ "Can a Muslim be a Freemason" Archived 29 March 2014 at the Wayback Machine Wake up from your slumber, 2007, retrieved 8 January 2014
- ^ "Hamas Covenant 1988". Avalon.law.yale.edu. 18 August 1988. Retrieved 15 January 2011.
- ^ Leyiktez, Celil. "Freemasonry in the Islamic World", Pietre-Stones Retrieved 2 October 2007.
- ^ "Home Page", District Grand Lodge of the Eastern Archipelago, retrieved 9 January 2014
- ^ "Mystery unveiled". The Star Online. 17 April 2005. Retrieved 13 February 2014.
- ^ Freemasonry in Lebanon Lodges linked to the Grand Lodge of Scotland, retrieved 22 August 2013
- ^ Peerzada Salman, "Masonic Mystique", December 2009, Dawn.com (News site), retrieved 3 January 2012
- ^ Kent Henderson, "Freemasonry in Islamic Countries", 2007 paper, Pietre Stones, retrieved 4 January 2014
- ^ a b Andrew Prescott, "The Unlawful Societies Act", First published in M. D. J. Scanlan, ed., The Social Impact of Freemasonry on the Modern Western World, The Canonbury Papers I (London: Canonbury Masonic Research Centre, 2002), pp. 116–34, Pietre-Stones website, retrieved 9 January 2014
- ^ "The Morgan Affair", Reprinted from The Short Talk Bulletin – Vol. XI, March 1933 No. 3, Grand Lodge of British Columbia and Yukon, retrieved 4 January 2014
- ^ King, Edward L. (2007). "P2 Lodge". Retrieved 31 October 2006.
- ^ Wilkenson, James; H. Stuart Hughes (1995). Contemporary Europe: A History. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall. p. 237. ISBN 978-0-13-291840-4. OCLC 31009810.
- ^ Zierer, Otto (1976). Concise History of Great Nations: History of Germany. New York: Leon Amiel Publisher. p. 104. ISBN 978-0-8148-0673-9. OCLC 3250405.
- ^ Michael Johnstone, The Freemasons, Arcturus, 2005, pp 73–75
- ^ a b c Hodapp, Christopher. Freemasons for Dummies. Indianapolis: Wiley, 2005. p. 86.
- ^ a b Bright, Martin (12 June 2005). "MPs told to declare links to Masons", The Guardian
- ^ Cusick, James (27 December 1996). Police want judges and MPs to reveal Masonic links too, The Independent
- ^ Sparrow, Andrew (5 November 2009). "Jack Straw scraps rule saying judges must declare if they are masons". guardian.co.uk. Retrieved 7 November 2009.
- ^ Prescott, pp. 13–14, 30, 33.
- ^ "World War II Documents showing the persecution of Freemasonry". Mill Valley Lodge #356. Archived from the original on 10 December 2012. Retrieved 21 May 2006.
- ^ Freemasons for Dummies, by Christopher Hodapp, Wiley Publishing Inc., Indianapolis, 2005, p. 85, sec. "Hitler and the Nazi"
- ^ Katz. "Jews and Freemasons in Europe". In Israel Gutman (ed.). The Encyclopedia of the Holocaust. p. vol. 2, p. 531. ISBN 978-0-02-897166-7. OCLC 20594356.
- ^ "Freemasonry".
- ^ McKeown, Trevor W. "Hitler and Freemasonry".
- ^ "Das Vergißmeinnicht-Abzeichen und die Freimaurerei, Die wahre Geschichte" (in German). Internetloge.de. Retrieved 8 July 2006.
- ^ Bernheim, Alain (10 September 2004). "The Blue Forget-Me-Not: Another Side Of The Story". Pietre-Stones Review of Freemasonry. Retrieved 8 July 2006.
- ^ Francke, Karl Heinz; Ernst-Günther Geppert (1974). Die Freimaurer-Logen Deutschlands und deren Grosslogen 1737–1972 (in German) (Second rev. ed.). Bayreuth: Quatuor Coronati.Also in: Francke, Karl Heinz; Ernst-Günther Geppert (1988). Die Freimaurer-Logen Deutschlands und deren Grosslogen 1737–1985 : Matrikel und Stammbuch; Nachschlagewerk über 248 Jahre Geschichte der Freimaurerei in Deutschland (in German). Bayreuth: Quatuor Coronati. ISBN 978-3-925749-05-6. OCLC 75446479.
- ^ "The Story Behind Forget Me Not Emblem!". Masonic Network. 11 December 2009.
Last edited on 21 June 2021, at 06:33
Content is available under CC BY-SA 3.0
unless otherwise noted.