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the arcane schools
John Yarker

A meeting of the "United Grand Lodge of Ancient Freemasons of England" was held at Freemasons' Hall on the 27th December, 1813, to formally consummate the Union.  The Masters, Wardens, and Past Masters of the two bodies composing this united Assembly had been obligated by the "Lodge of Reconciliation" on a uniform plan, and were admitted by tickets, signed and countersigned by the two Secretaries whose names appear to the Articles of Union mentioned in our last chapter, Brothers White and Leslie.  The two Grand Masters, namely, the Dukes of Sussex and Kent, occupied equal thrones.  The Rev. Brother Coglin, D.D., Grand Chaplain of the Grand Lodge of 1717, proclaimed the confirmation of the Articles to which the brethren signified their assent; then the Rev. Brother Barry, D.D., Grand Chaplain of the Grand Lodge of 1751, proclaimed the Union; after which Brother Wesley performed a symphony on the organ.  Other symbolic ceremonies were gone through and the tests were pronounced pure and correct.

The Grand Officers of both bodies now divested themselves of their Insignia.  The Duke of Kent proposed his brother the Duke of Sussex as Grand Master of the United Fraternity.  The latter was then obligated, placed upon the throne and proclaimed; after which the Grand Master proceeded to appoint his officers, the Rev. Bro. Samuel Hemming, D.D., and Bro. Isaac Lindo, Grand Wardens, and the two Grand Secretaries being those of the former Grand Lodges. {521}

The Register of the united List of Lodges was settled by drawing lots for precedence, and as that resulted in favour of the 1751 body its Charters obtained a rank in numerical order over those of the other, which still perpetuates a muddle in the chronological position of the Lodges.  A reference to Brother John Lane's valuable "Masonic Records" indicates that the revised list of the United Grand Lodge included 388 Lodges of the 1717 Constitution, and 260 Lodges of the 1751 Constitution, or a total on the new Register of 648 Lodges.  A new edition of the "Constitutions" was edited by Brother William Williams and issued in 1815, and which inserts the declaration as to degrees with which we closed our last chapter.

The Arms adopted by the United Grand Lodge were a quartering of those of the Grand Lodge of 1717, and those of the Grand Lodge of 1751; the first being a differenced coat of those granted to the London Company of Masons in 1472, and the latter being derived from the standards of the four principal tribes of Israel, adapted by Christians to the four Evangelists, and forming the seal of the Grand Chapter of York, the Grand Lodge Seal being the three crowns attributed to Prince Edwin of Deira.  Motto: Aude vide tace (Hear, see, and be silent.)

A revision of the Lectures of the three degrees of the Craft was committed to the Rev. Bro. Samuel Hemming, D.D., Chaplain to the Duke of Sussex, who made some progress therein, but is said to have been completed by the Rev. Bro. Williams.  The system, though exhibiting no great amount of genius, has continued in use to the present day, and though preserving the main features of the older systems all Christian references were expunged, in order to adapt them, in an antiquarian sense, to the supposed constitution of the Society by King Solomon, whose throne every Worshipful Master is fabled to occupy.

For some years the United Grand Lodge continued the even tenor of its way, without much worthy of notice for the historian.  On the death of Brother William Preston {522} in 1810 he left 300 Pounds in Consols the interest of which was to be devoted to an annual rehearsal of his own system of Lectures.  On the 8th March, 1820, the Grand Master called the attention of Grand Lodge to the death of George III., who had occupied the throne since 1760, and an address of Condolence was voted to the Grand Patron of United Freemasonry, now King George IV.; this address was presented by the Duke of Sussex on the 10th May, 1820, and the Royal Arms were hereafter engraved on the head of the certificates.  A similar address was presented to His Majesty, the Grand Patron upon the death of H.R.H. the Duke of Kent, Past G.M.

Between the years 1819-23 a regrettable misunderstanding occurred between the Prov. Gd. Master of Lancashire and some of the Lodges under his sway; the misunderstanding arising in Lodge No. 31, meeting at Liverpool.  Blame seems to be attributable to all sides alike, and the Lodge was erased in 1822; it was followed in 1823 by the erasure of the Sea Captain's Lodge, No. 140 which had resolved to stand or fall by No. 31.<<Preston's "Illus.," Oliver's ed.; also "Hist. Harmonic Lo.," 163, Jos. Hawkins.>>

The death of the celebrated traveller Brother Belzoni in 1825, left his widow in straightened circumstances, and the Grand Lodge voted her the sum, of 50 Pounds, and has placed it on record that this Brother was made a Mason in the "Lodge of the Pyramids" at Cairo, and whilst resident at Cambridge had joined the "School of Plato Lodge," No. 549.  Belzoni left behind him some little memento of his Masonic theories, in which he refers to the triangular and the serpent aprons of the Egyptian Kings, and their Initiations; he also expresses an opinion that the invention of the Level and Plumb, are due to Nimrod and Ashur.

In the year 1829 past Grand Stewards had permission to wear a Jewel.  The death of the Grand Patron George IV. in 1830 was reported to Grand Lodge 17th July, 1830 by his brother the Grand Master, who then read the draft of an Address to be presented to King William IV. {523} condoling with him upon the loss of his brother, and soliciting that he would extend his Patronage to the Craft.  To this a reply was received from Sir Robert Peel, dated the 28th July, 1830, signifying the King's consent to become Grand Patron.

At the beginning of the year 1832 Sir John Soane, the Grand Superintendent of Works, reported the completion of alterations which had been in progress to adapt the new Masonic Hall as a Temple exclusively devoted to Masonry, and as the expense of the alterations had been great he enclosed a draft for 500 Poounds towards the cost.  In this year 1832 a renumbering of the Lodges took place to fill up the vacancies occasioned by Lodges which had become extinct.  In March 1833 Lord Dundas, the Deputy G.M. presented to Grand Lodge on behalf of the Duke of Sussex, G.M., a bust of King William IV. the Grand Patron; also three gilt trowels which had been used on the occasions of laying the foundation stones of the London University; the Licensed Victuallers' Asylum; and the Charing Cross Hospital.

In the year 1834 the "Freemasons' Quarterly Review" was commenced and continued its labours down to 1850 when a "New Series" was begun, since which time the Craft has never been without one or more periodicals.  The learned Brother George Oliver, D.D., whose father, the Rev. Samuel Oliver, had been a Mason of the "Ancient" school, since 1823 had published a number of Masonic works; he may be considered the father of Masonic literature, though his works, for want of critical attention, have fallen into much undeserved neglect.

Several new Lodges were constituted in the Provinces in 1834, when the Earl of Durham was Deputy G.M., and new Masonic Halls were opened at Dorchester and Tiverton.In the month of June 1835 a resolution was passed at a meeting of brothers favourable to the scheme in view, -- "that it is expedient to provide for the wants of the meritorious, but aged and decayed Freemasons, by {524} the erection of an Asylum to receive them within its Sanctuary."

In December 1835 the Grand Stewards' Lodge celebrated the Centenary of its foundation in June 1735, at Freemasons' Hall.  Also the Grand Lodge of Scotland celebrated the Centenary of its foundation by a Festival on St. Andrew's day 1836.  In this year 1836 several foundation stones were laid in England with Masonic ritual and solemnities.  The Duke of Sussex, G.M., had been for some time in bad health, and the loss of his eyesight was feared, but on the 27th Jany., 1837, he was so far recovered as to make his appearance in Grand Lodge, when he received a most cordial and hearty welcome.  The Grand Lodge at this period conceived the idea of forming a Library.

In the year 1838 a magnificent Candelabrum, the funds to purchase which had been raised by subscription, was presented to the Grand Master.  The "Asylum for Aged and Decayed Freemasons," celebrated a festival in June of this year, but later on, in the same year, an opposition to the scheme was raised by the Grand Master, who had formed the impression that it would injure the other charities, but the opposition was withdrawn, after some very unpleasant scenes, which for a time affected the Masonic standing of Brother R. T. Crucifex, one of its supporters and the Editor of the "Freemasons Quarterly Review."  This Asylum was brought into actual operation in 1839; and the Earl of Durham was appointed Pro-Grand Master in the same year.  In 1842 the Male Annuity Fund of the Royal Benevolent Institution was established, the Grand Lodge voting it an annual sum of 400 Pounds.

The Duke of Sussex, G.M., died on the 21st April, 1843, and it then became necessary for the Grand Lodge to elect a Grand Master.  Bro. Thomas Dundas Earl of Zetland was selected for that office, and his Installation took place in March 1844.  In the same year a handsome testimonial was presented to Dr. George Oliver.  Also the {525} Duchess of Inverness presented to Grand Lodge the Candelabrum which had been given to her husband in 1838.  Between the years 1944-7, a certain amount of friction occurred between the Grand Lodges of England and the Royal York of Berlin, owing to the refusal of the latter to acknowledge any other than Christian Freemasons; the difficulty was finally arranged by the Royal York, acceding, in a limited measure, to the liberal views of this country.  Previous to 1847 it was, from olden time, a necessity that a Candidate should be "free-born," but in this year it was resolved to substitute the qualification of "free-man."  In 1849 the Masonic Widow's Annuity fund was established; and the Queen became Grand Patroness of the Boy's School in 1852.

On the 7th December, 1853, the Grand Master reported to Grand Lodge that he had been under the necessity of suspending Bro. William Tucker, the Prov. Gd. Master of Dorsetshire; the offence being that he had made his appearance in his Prov. Gd. Lodge wearing, in addition to his Craft clothing, the insignia of the Christian orders of Masonry.  It is also on record<<"Freem Quart. Review.">> that Brother. Tucker had made a point in his Address of recommending those higher degrees of Masonry found in the Ancient and Accepted Rite of 33 degrees, which after having met with disfavour from the late Grand Master had been introduced into England from America within two years of the death of the Duke of Sussex.

On the 4th June, 1856, an attempt was made to foist the ceremonial of the Mark degree into the Craft series, but was rejected as an impossibility, as the "Articles of Union" state that pure Freemasonry consists of three degrees and no more; on this occasion Brother John Henderson, the Grand Registrar, said that, -- "no man, nor body of men, could make such innovation as that proposed, without endangering the whole fabric of the Institution."  The Earl of Dalhousie was appointed Deputy G.M. in 1857. {526}

Between October 1855 and September 1857, many of the Canadian Craftsmen withdrew themselves from under our banner alleging neglect by the officials of Grand Lodge, and thereupon erected a Grand Lodge of their own.  This led to the formation of a "Colonial Board" in 1856 by the Grand Lodge of England, and the establishment of a second Grand Lodge in Canada.  On this occasion England lost the Canadian Lodges, save a few Masons who remained faithful to their old allegiance.  The two Grand Lodges, thus formed in Canada united 14th July, 1858 under the designation of "The Grand Lodge of Canada."  These troubles led to the resignation of Bro. Wm. Hy. White, who had been Gd. Secretary since the union of 1813, and to the appointment in 1857 of Brother William Gray Clarke.

The nucleus of a Masonic Hall was begun in Manchester 27th,June, 1857, by taking the upper floor of rooms over the shops with an opening at 78 Cross Street, and dividing the same into Refreshment room supplied by a back staircase, a Lodge Room and a Tyler's Room; a club also was established.  The Liverpool Masonic Temple was commenced in 1858 by the purchase of a building for 1,600 Pounds.

In April 1861 the Earl de Grey and Ripon was appointed Deputy G.M.  On the 8th January, 1862, the Grand Lodge voted an Address of Condolence to the Queen on the death of her Consort on 14th December, 1861.  In July, 1862, the Prov. Gd. Master of East Lancashire Brother Stephen Blair, laid the foundation of a Masonic Hall at Manchester, the necessary funds being raised by a Company of Shareholders.  On the 3rd December, 1862, it was resolved to revise the numbering of the Lodges, thus eliminating the vacancies occurring since 1832.  The Masonic Hall at Manchester was opened by the Prov. Gd. Master 3rd November, 1864.  It had been in contemplation to improve the Masonic Hall, London, by separating the Tavern entirely from that portion used for Grand Lodge purposes, and on the 27th April, 1864, the Earl of Zetland, G.M., laid the {527} foundation stone of the new building which was completed for Masonic purposes in 1866.

In 1865 a revision of the "Book of Constitutions" was made and it was directed that the term Prov. Grand Master in England, should be District Grand Master in the Colonies and foreign parts.  On the 7th June, 1865, the subject of the Mark degree was again brought under discussion and it was resolved to refuse recognition to the Mark Grand Lodge which had been established in 1856, the ceremonial being treated as comparatively modern.  The learned brother Dr. George Oliver was interred with Masonic honours in 1867; and on the death of Brother William Gray Clarke in 1868, Brother John Hervey became Grand Secretary.

On the 2nd June 1869 the Earl of Zetland, G.M., informed the Grand Lodge that H.R.H. the Prince of Wales had been received into Freemasonry by the King of Sweden; and in September of the same year he was elected a Past Gd. Master of England, and the Prince attended Grand Lodge in December 1869.  The number of Lodges on the Roll had increased from 723 in 1844, to 1299 in the year 1869.  Freemasons' Hall had now been separated from the tavern, and was formally inaugurated on the 14th April 1869.

On the voluntary resignation of the Earl of Zetland as Grand Master in 1870, a handsome testimonial was arranged and subscriptions obtained; the Earl accepted a silver inkstand, and directed that the remainder of the contribution, which amounted to 2,730 Pounds should form a fund for the relief of distinguished brethren who might be in distress and to be named the "Zetland Fund."

Earl de Grey and Ripon was now nominated to the office of Grand Master, and was installed as such on the 14th May 1870.  The Masonic career of this Grand Master, who was made a Marquis for diplomatic services in the United States, was not closed in a manner equally distinguished, as upon his embracing the Roman Catholic faith he resigned his office of Grand Master 2nd September, {528} 1874.  Arthur Duke of Connaught and Leopold Duke of Albany were initiated in 1874, the former in the "Prince of Wales Lodge," and the latter in the "Apollo University Lodge."

The Prince of Wales having already the rank of a Past Grand Master of England, a deputation was appointed to interview him upon the acceptance of the office vacated by the Marquis of Ripon.  At the meeting of Grand Lodge in December, 1874, it was reported that the Prince would accept the Grand Mastership, and would appoint the Earl of Carnarvon as pro-Grand Master, and Lord Skelmersdale as Deputy G.M.  Accordingly the Prince of Wales was Installed Grand Master, with great pomp, at the Royal Albert Hall, South Kensington, on the 28th April, 1875, which was duly commemorated by a painting in oil, and an engraved copy of the same.  In May of the same year the Prince was Installed G.Z. of the Supreme Grand Chapter.  His brother Leopold Duke of Albany was Installed Provincial Gd. Master of Oxfordshire in February 1876.

At the meeting of Grand Lodge, April, 1877, the Prince of Wales, G.M., appointed his brothers the Dukes of Connaught and of Albany as his two Grand Wardens; and 4,000 Pounds was voted by Grand Lodge to the Royal National Life Boat Institution.  On the 5th December in this year a Committee was appointed to consider the action of the Grand Orient of France in reference to the abolition of the requirement of any special religious belief from candidates for Initiation, or as the Grand Lodge preferred to put it, the removal of the name of God from their Constitution, and in March 1878 the Committee gave in a report denying recognition as "true and genuine" brethren to those so Initiated.

In 1879 Brother John Hervey, whose death took place the following year, resigned the office of Grand Secretary, and Colonel Shadwell H. Clerke was appointed.  On the 1st June, 1881, the list Of Grand Officers was increased by adding a Deputy Master of Ceremonies and two Grand {529} Sword Bearers.  In 1882 the Prince of Wales, G.M., was present at Grand Lodge, with his two brothers, when a congratulatory Address was voted to the Queen on her escape from the danger of assassination.  In 1883 a new edition of the "Book of Constitutions" was issued; the great Hall at Freemasons' Hall in London was destroyed by fire; and the Society lost the Duke of Albany by death, 28th March, 1884.

On the 28th November, 1884, a Charter was granted for the "Quatuor Coronati Lodge," 2076, Brother Sir Charles Warren being the first W.M.; the object of the Lodge, besides the ordinary routine of such bodies, being the increase of Masonic knowledge by competent Lectures at each meeting, the publication of the same in a journal entitled "Ars Quatuor Coronatorum," and the reprint of our ancient MSS., and other works in volumes designated "Quatuor Coronatorum Antigraphia."  One of their first developments was the establishment, by the late Brother G. W. Speth, the Secretary of the Lodge, of a "Correspondence Circle" which now numbers over three thousand members.

In the year 1884 Grand Lodge passed a resolution of Remonstrance against the Pope's Encyclical denouncing Freemasonry; and a new edition of the Arch Regulations was prepared.  At a meeting of "Royal Alpha Lodge," London, on the 17th March, 1885, the Prince of Wales, G.M., himself Initiated his eldest son Prince Albert Victor, and in 1887 conferred upon him the office of Senior Grand Warden.  The new Great Hall was completed in 1885; and on the 22nd June, 1886, the Prince of Wales, G.M., Installed his brother the Duke of Connaught as Prov. Gd. Master of Sussex.

On the 1st June, 1887, Brother Henry Sadler was appointed Sub-librarian of Grand Lodge, which was a poor affair for so wealthy a body, but which Brother Sadler has done much to improve and is himself the author of some valuable works, as "Masonic Facts and Fictions; Life of Thomas Dunckerley; Notes on the Ceremony of Installation;" {530} Portrait of G. M. Sayer; Catalogue of Gd. Lodge Library, etc.  In this year, 1887, Brother R. F. Gould completed the last volume of his well-known "History of Freemasonry."

On the 13th June, 1887, a grand Masonic Celebration of Her Majesty's Jubilee was held at the Royal Albert Hall, under the presidency of H.R.H. the Prince of Wales as Grand Master, when an Address, handsomely illuminated on vellum, for presentation to her Majesty the Queen, was read to the Assembly and a special Jewel was presented to the Grand Master, such as might be worn by all Masons who were subscribing members of any Lodge at the time.  At a meeting of Grand Lodge, 6th June, 1888, the rank of Past Grand Master was conferred upon Oscar II. King of Sweden and Norway, Grand Master or Vicarius Salamonis in those countries.  Between the 4th and 7th of June in this year the Royal Masonic Benevolent Institution for Girls celebrated its centenary at the Royal Albert Hall; the 4th was the prize distribution day, at which were present the Prince and Princess of Wales, and the Princesses Louise, Victoria, and Maud.  On the 7th the Prince of Wales presided, and was supported by the King of Sweden, and various notables of the English Craft.

In December 1890 the Prince of Wales, G.M., Installed his eldest son Prince Albert Victor Duke of Clarence and Avondale as Prov. Grand Master of Berkshire; unfortunately his tenure of that office was very short as he died on the 14th January, 1892.  The death of Brother Shadwell H. Clerke, the Grand Secretary, on the 25th December, 1891, led to the appointment to that office of Brother Edward Letchworth.

On the 27th January, 1892, the Grand Lodge voted an Address of Condolence to the Queen, and to the Prince of Wales, G.M., on the lamented death of the Duke of Clarence and Avondale, and the whole Craft followed this example.  The Jubilee of the Royal Masonic Benevolent Institution was celebrated the 24th February of this year at the Covent Garden Theatre, with the Earl of {531} Mount Edgecombe as President, when the unprecedented sum of 59,593 Pounds 15s. 0d. was contributed.  In December, 1892, Grand Lodge again agreed to enlarge the number of Grand Officers by the addition of a Deputy Grand Registrar, a Deputy Grand Sword Bearer, additional Grand Deacons, and Grand Directors of Ceremonies; the like appointments to extend to Provincial Grand Lodges, according to their numerical strength.  During this year the question of admitting Jews as Freemasons was agitated in Prussia, and a new Lodge was established for the special purpose of such Initiations.  It is, however, outside a work of this nature to print the ordinary and recent outline of the routine of Freemasonry, which must give the world the idea that all is pomp, parade, man millinery, and banqueting.  Matters of this sort can be gathered from the ordinary Freemasons' Journals, which make it their business to report every detail for the edification of the members of Lodges.  With the great increase that is constantly taking place in the numbers of Lodges, innovations are constantly being introduced of a doubtful character, not calculated for the good of the Society.  We will, however, mention a few more items of general interest.

At a meeting of Grand Lodge, 19th April, 1896, the rank of Past Grand Officer was conferred upon 21 distinguished Masons, in commemoration of the 21 years during which the Prince of Wales had filled the Grand Mastership.  A commemoration festival was held on the 14th June 1897 at the Royal Albert Hall, in honour of her Majesty the Queen having attained the 60th year of her reign, and which was one of the finest spectacles on record.  Another, worthy of record, was the Festival of the Royal Masonic Institution for Boys, on the 10th July, 1898, under the Presidency of the Grand Master at the Royal Albert Hall, London, when the unprecedented sum of 141,000 Pounds was reported as subscribed for the purpose of erecting new school buildings, and removing the School to Bushey, near Watford.  At the meeting of Grand Lodge on the {532} 7th September, 1898, terms were proposed and passed for the recognition of the sometime established Grand Lodge of New Zealand.

On the 12th May, 1900, the foundation-stone was laid at Bushey of the New Royal Masonic Institution for Boys; the inscription upon the plate deposited was as follows: -- "This stone was laid on the 12th May, A.D. 1900, with Masonic ceremonial, by H.R.H. the Duke of Connaught and Strathearn, K.G., &c., &c., Grand Master, President of the Institution."

The death of H.M. Queen Victoria occurring on the 22nd January, 1901, With the accession of the Prince of Wales as Edward VII., caused his resignation as Grand Master, on the 15th February, upon which the Duke of Connaught was nominated as Grand Master and was Installed 17th July, 1901, in the Royal Albert Hall.

The prosperity of the Craft, for many years, has been progressive and uninterrupted in its numerical accessions, and since 1869, when the Lodges were renumbered, to the day we write, some 1,500 Lodges are added to the Roll.  The advance in its literary efforts has kept pace with the numerical increase in its Lodges, though Freemasons as a body are very indifferent to its literature.  The "Quatuor Coronati Lodge" has distinguished itself by the issue of numerous facsimiles of ancient MSS. reproduced with great care, and in the most beautiful style; it has completed twenty volumes of its "Transactions," Lectures and papers distinguished by the accuracy and soundness of their information, and the excellence of the workmanship, and it has thus been the means of spreading sound and reliable Masonic literature over all the world; and we have been much indebted to its papers in compiling this book.  In equally good style the Newcastle College of Rosicrucians has produced facsimiles of ancient MSS. besides their ordinary "Transactions."  The Rosicrucian College of London has also published valuable papers.  The West Yorkshire Provincial Library, established by the exertions of Brother Wm. Watson, the Prov. Gd. Secretary {533} and Librarian, has reproduced nine copies of the Constitutional Charges at the cost of the Prov. Gd. Master, the late Brother Thos. Wm. Tew.  The York brothers have published a similar volume of the old Charges by subscription.  Other valuable works have proceeded from the pens of Brothers Wm. James Hughan, Kenneth R. H. Mackenzie, Robert Freke Gould, W. Wynn Westcott, M.B., G. W. Speth, John Strachan, Q.C., Henry Sadler, John Lane, W. J. C. Crawley, LL.D., G. W. Bain, and many others too numerous to mention; also some reprints of old plates, books, and documents.  The Quatuor Coronati Lodge, 2076, however, has had the great misfortune to lose one of its most valued pillars, Bro. G. W. Speth, 19th April, 1901, in his 54th year, and the Lodge erected, by subscription, a monument.  The death of the Treasurer followed on the 4th June 1901, viz., Sir Walter Besant in his 65th year.  In 1905 Bro. R. F. Gould published his "Concise History of Freemasonry."

Another notable event of the time was the establishment, by Mrs. Besant, of a S.G.C. 33rd Degree, in London, under authority from India, which received it from a dissension which occurred in the S.G.C. 33rd Degree of France.  It confers all its degrees indiscriminately upon males and females, and works the Craft degrees under the Ritual of the Grand Lodge of England, and at the present time has numerous adherents and Lodges.  It has added only to the Ritual a "Dharma" Lecture which compares Masonry with secret societies of India, and takes the name of Co-Masonry.

Even this may aid in rousing amongst Freemasons a more intellectual standard of labour.  Possibly, if Masonry was less of a political machine, officered from the Court, and its high officials elected by the Craft for "Merit" alone, we should see a better state of things than now exists.  A section of the Press is now agitating against Freemasonry, assigning as grounds that the worst men are employed by our Municipal Councils to the detriment of non-Masons.  On the other hand, a very worthy brother, {534} who was initiated in the same Lodge as myself, was complaining against the carelessness in inquiry into the character of candidates.  I replied that this was so, but although I had been fifty-five years a Mason, and had been deluged from every part of the world with unsolicited Honours, I was pleased to say that, in all these years, I never, in a single instance, met with any one Mason with an eye to my worldly interests, hence I utterly disbelieved those assertions that good men were ousted in the interests of Masons.

In all these years the old Operative Guilds of Free Masons have continued their work without changing the secrecy of their proceedings.  They have their Lodges in London, Leicester, Norfolk, Derbyshire, Holyhead, York, Durham, Berwick, and elsewhere.  Some of these are in a languishing condition, but they exist, and are in course of galvanisation.  Of late years they seem to have become disgusted with the vain pretensions of Modern Speculative Freemasonry, and under authority of the three coequal G.M.M.'s of the South and North have to some little extent relaxed the secrecy of their proceedings; and though the greater part of their members are utterly averse to anything whatever being made public, possibly in time these restrictions will be further modified, to the advantage of the Speculative system of 1813, for many parts are quite incomprehensible, even to learned Freemasons, without the technical part which only the Guilds of the Free Masons can supply.

F I N I S.


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