Freemasonry was a major cultural and social phenomenon and a key element of the Enlightenment. It was to have an international influence across the globe. This primary resource collection charts a key period in the development of organized Freemasonry culminating in the formation of a single United Grand Lodge of England.
The secrecy that has surrounded Freemasonry has made it difficult to access information and documents about the organization and its adherents in the past. This collection is the result of extensive archival research and transcription and highlights the most significant themes associated with Freemasonry.
The documents are drawn from masonic collections, private archives and libraries worldwide. The majority of these texts have never before been republished. Documents include rituals (some written in code), funeral services, sermons, songs, certificates, an engraved list of lodges, letters, pamphlets, theatrical prologues and epilogues, and articles from newspapers and periodicals.
This collection will enable researchers to identify many key masons for the first time. It will be of interest to students of Freemasonry, the Enlightenment and researchers in eighteenth-century studies.
Table of Contents
List of Figures
John Pine, A List of Regular Lodges as Constituted ’till March 25th 1725. (1725)
[Anon.], The Beginning and First Foundation of the Most Worthy Craft of Masonry with the Charges Thereunto Belonging (1739)
[Anon.], The Pocket Companion and History of Free-Masons (1754)
Thomas Dunckerley, The Moral Part of Masonry Explained (1757)
Thomas Edmondes, An Address … as Delivered at the Steward’s Lodge (1763)
Thomas Dunckerley, A Charge, Delivered to the Members of the Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons, Held at the Castle-Inn, Marlborough (1769)
William Meeson, An Introduction to Free Masonry: For the Use of the Fraternity; and None Else. In Four Parts (1775)
William Dodd, An Oration Delivered at the Dedication of Free-Masons’ Hall, Great Queen-Street, Lincoln’s-Inn-Fields, on Thursday, May 23, 1776 (1776)
J. Rotheram, A Charge, Delivered to Several Newly Initiated Brethren, in St. John’s Lodge (1777)
Anon. [Robert Trewman ed.], The Principles of Free-Masonry Delineated (1777)
Anon. [William Preston], State of Facts: Being a Narrative of Some Late Proceedings in the Society of Free Masons, Respecting William Preston (1778)
[Anon.], An Account of the Institution and Proceeding, of the Governors of the Royal Cumberland Free-Mason School (1788)
James Mullalla, Esq., An Essay on the Origin of Masonry (1792)
Jane Elizabeth Moore, Miscellaneous Poems (1797)
[Parliament of Great Britain], An Act for the More Effectual Suppression of Societies Established for Seditious and Treasonable Purposes,and for Better Preventing Treasonable and Seditious Practices (1799)
Two Masonic Certificates (1798 & 1808)
[Anon.], The Masonic Museum, Containing a Select Collection of the Most Celebrated Songs, Sung in All the Respectable Lodges (1799)
[Antients and Moderns Grand Lodges], Articles of Union between the Two Grand Lodges of Freemasons of England (1813)
List of Sources
General Editor: Róbert Péter (volumes 4–5) is at the University of Szeged, Hungary
Volume Editors: Cécile Revauger (volume 1) is at the University Bordeaux Montaigne
Jan A. M. Snoek (volume 2–3) is at Heidelberg University, Germany