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June 24, 1717: The Premier Grand Lodge of England is founded in London  

 

GregBO
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Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 3814
24/06/2020 4:17 am  

The Premier Grand Lodge of England is founded in London on June 24, 1717, the first Masonic Grand Lodge in the world (now the United Grand Lodge of England).

Originally concerned with the practice of Freemasonry in London and Westminster, it soon became known as the Grand Lodge of England. Because it was the first Masonic Grand Lodge to be created, convention calls it the Premier Grand Lodge of England in order to distinguish it from the Most Ancient and Honourable Society of Free and Accepted Masons according to the Old Constitutions, more usually referred to as the Ancient Grand Lodge of England, and the Grand Lodge of All England Meeting at York. It existed until 1813, when it united with the Ancient Grand Lodge of England to create the United Grand Lodge of England.

The basic principles of the Grand Lodge of England were inspired by the ideal of tolerance and universal understanding of the Enlightenment and by the Scientific Revolution of the 17th century.

Officially, the Grand Lodge of England was founded in London on St. John the Baptist's day, 24 June 1717, when four existing Lodges gathered at the Goose and Gridiron Ale-house in St. Paul's Church-yard in London and constituted themselves a Grand Lodge. The four lodges had previously met together in 1716 at the Apple-Tree Tavern, "and having put into the Chair the oldest Master Mason (now the Master of a Lodge), they constituted themselves a Grand Lodge pro Tempore in due form."

It was at that meeting in 1716 that they resolved to hold the Annual Assembly and Feast and then choose a Grand Master from among themselves, which they did the following year. All four lodges were simply named after the public houses where they were accustomed to meet, at the Goose and Gridiron Ale-house in St. Paul's Church-yard (Lodge now called Lodge of Antiquity No. 2); the Crown Ale-house in Parker's Lane off Drury Lane; the Apple-Tree Tavern in Charles Street, Covent Garden (Lodge now called Lodge of Fortitude and Old Cumberland No. 12); and the Rummer and Grapes Tavern in Channel Row, Westminster (Lodge now called Royal Somerset House and Inverness Lodge No. IV).

 

​"What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal." -Albert Pike

​"​My father didn't tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it.​" - Clarence Buddinton Kelland


GregBO
Admin
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 3814
24/06/2020 4:17 am  

Little is known of Anthony Sayer, the first Grand Master, but the next, George Payne, rose to a high position within the Commissioners of Taxes. Payne served as Grand Master twice, in 1718–19, and 1720–21. The year in between was taken by John Theophilus Desaguliers, a scientist, clergyman, and a pupil of Newton.

Thereafter, every Grand Master was a member of the nobility, although in these early years, it is unlikely that they were anything more than figureheads. The intention was to raise the public profile of the society, which evidently succeeded. In 1725, aside from London Lodges, the minutes of Grand Lodge show lodges at Bath, Bristol, Norwich, Chichester, Chester, Reading, Gosport, Carmarthen, Salford, and Warwick, and embryonic Provincial Grand Lodges in Cheshire and South Wales. Grand Lodge was outgrowing London.

​"What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal." -Albert Pike

​"​My father didn't tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it.​" - Clarence Buddinton Kelland


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