Enciclopédia Mackey – IRELAND ~ IZRACHIAH




The early history of Freemasonry in Ireland is involved in the deepest obscurity. It is vain to look in Anderson, in Preston, Smith, or any other English writer of the eighteenth century, for any account of the organization of Lodges in that kingdom anterior to the establishment of a Grand Lodge.

All the official records of the Grand Lodge of Ireland before the year 1760, and all the Minute Books prior to 1780, have been lost (see volume 6, page 52, History of the Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of Ireland, 1925, Brothers John Heron Lepper and Philip Crossle). Brother Wilhelrn Begemann (Freirnaurerei in Ireland, page 8) alludes to the remarkable circumstance that Old Constitutions have not been discovered or traced in Ireland although many copies were found in England and Scotland. The absence of such documents is singular. Brothers Lepper and Crossle (History, page 36) refer to the vear 1688 and to the existence then of a Speculative Lodge at Trinity College, Dublin. Of this interesting instance, Brother W. J. Chetwode Crawley first submitted some particulars in the Preface to Brother Sadler’s Masonic Reprints and Revelations. The following quotation is from the manuscript left by the author John Jones, a friend of the famous Dean Jonathan Swift:

It was lately ordered that for the honor and dignity of the University there should be introduced a society of freemasons, consisting of gentlemen, mechanics, porters (etc., etc.) who shall hind themselves by an oath never to reveal their mighty no-secret and to relieve whatsoever strolling distressed brethren they meet with, after the example of the fraternity of freemason in and about Trinity College, by whom a collection was lately made for, and the purse of charity well stuffed for, a reduced brother, who received their charity as follows.

Then come some academic jokes which in the course of centuries have lost the savor of their salt and finally the writer acknowledges he has offended his acquaintances “I have left myself no friends…. The Freemasons will banish me their Lodge, and bar me the happiness of kissing Long Lawrence’- (see The Differences between English and Irish Masonic Rituals, treated historically, by Brother J. Heron Lepper, 1920, Dublin).

Weighty as are the items collected by Brothers Lepper and Crossle none have greater romantic lure than those relating to these Lady Freemason, the Hon.Elizabeth Aldworth, about the only instance as the commentators suggest where the supposed initiation of a woman rests upon something more than mere tradition. Essays dealing with this curious ceremony are in Ars Quatuor Coronatorum, by Brothers Crawley and Conder, and there is also a pamphlet by Brother John Day of Cork, Ireland, Memoirs of the Lady Freemason, 1914. A significant point is that in a portrait of her a small trowel is worn suspended from the left shoulder. This emblem on her breast is still deemed in the United States the distinguishing Masonic jewel of the Craft and its prominence in the day of Mrs. Aldworth and more recently for a like purpose in Ireland is another tie between the Lodges of the two countries For further information in this direction the reader may consult a paper, Irish Inguence upon American Freemasonry, by Robert I. Clegg, read at a Belfast communication of the Lodge of Research, No. 202, Dublin.

Briefly as to the Lady Freemason, we may here say she was the only daughter of the first Viscount Doneraile. Born in 1693, married in 1713 to Richard Aldworth, she died in 1773, aged 80. The tradition first printed in 1811 is that as a young girl, before her marriage, she by accident witnessed the meeting of a Masonic Lodge, held at Doneraile House, where her father was Master, and on her discovery was initiated. She is credited with a life-long love of the Craft, her portrait shows her wearing a small trowel and a lambskin apron trimmed with blue silkstill preserved by her descendants, her name appears as a subscriber to Brother Fifield D’Assigny’s famous book, the Serious and Impartial Enquiry, 1744, and after her death the Freemasons in 1782 toasted the memory of “our Sister Aldworth of New-Market” (Ahiman Rezon, Belfast, 1782, page xx). The date of her initiation, neglecting the other details as we may prefer, in connection with the Jones account, indicates an early Masonic activity in Ireland before what is now considered the Grand Lodge era.

But Dr. W. J. Chetwode Crawley, former Grand Treasurer of Ireland and a brilliant student of the Craft has done much to lift the veil from the early Irish Freemasonry. A contemporary newspaper has been discovered, which gives an account of the installation of the Earl of Rosse as Grand Master of Ireland in June, 1725; and this account is so worded as to leave little room for doubt that the Grand Lodge of Ireland had already been in existence long enough to develop a complete organization of Grand Officers with at least six subordinate Lodges under its jurisdiction (see Brother Crawley’s Caementaria Hiber nica, Fasciculus ii).

Brother W. J. Chetwode Crawley (caementaria Hybernica, Fasciculus i, page 3) tells that in the year 1876 the Council-book of the Corporation of Cork was carefully transcribed and edited by Richard Caulfield, LL.D., Librarian of the Queen’s College at Cork, an antiquary of more than local repute, who brought to light two entries of Masonic importance. Under the date of December 2, 1725, he found this item, “That a Charter be granted for the Master Wardens and Society of Free Mafions, according to their petition.” Two months later, on January 31, 17254, he described this entry: “The Charter of Freemasons being this day read in Council, it is ordered that further consideration of this Charter be referred to the next Council, and that Alderman Phillips, Mr. Croker, Foulks, Austin, and Mr. Com. Speaker, do inspect same.”

Brother Crawley found that beyond these two, no references are made, before or afterwards, to the Charter, or to Freemasons. He further states that the records of other Corporations in the South of Ireland have been published by the same diligent antiquary, but no similar entries have been found, “though we know the towns were thick-set with Freemasons.”

The Minute of the Grand Lodge of Ireland for December 27, 1726, with which the records of the Grand Lodge begin, is not the earliest entry, either in point of time or of position. The transactions of a subordinate Lodge, which evidently acted as a Mother Lodge for Cork, and intermixed, and systematically entered by the same hand, in many cases, on the same page as those of the Grand Lodge. An entry of this sort holds the first page, and shows us the subordinate Lodge in full working order. “With some little pride,” Brother Crawley continues, we can point out that the first recorded transaction of Irish Freemasons is concerned with the relief of a poor brother.’ ” He also points out that “The Minute of Grand Lodge plunges so boldly in mediatress, that we cannot help harboring the suspicion that this was not its first meeting.” The wording of the item is as follows:

At an Assembly and Meeting of the Grand Lodge for the Provinee of Munster at the Lodge of Mr. Herbert Phaire in Corke on Saint John’s Daye being the 27th day of December ano Dni 1726. The Honble. James O’Brien Esqrs, by unanimous consent elected Grand Master for the ensuing year.

Spningett Penn Esqre. appointed by the Grand Master as his Deputy.

Walther Good Gent}

Thomas Riggs Gent} appointed Grand Wardens.

The Grand Master was the third son of William, Earl of Inchiquin, and represented Youghall in the Irish Parliament. The Deputy Grand Master, Springett Penn, or Penne, as he signed himself, was a great-grandson of Admiral Penn, the famous Commonwealth Admiral, and grandson of the still more famous Quaker. Born in 1703, he died in 1744. Brother W. Wonnacott, Grand Librarian of England added to the above information by Brother Crawley the further interesting item that Springett Penn was a Brother in 1723 of the Lodge at the Ship behind the Royal Exchange at London as recorded in the Grand Lodge Minute Book No. 1.

In 1731 Lord Kingston, who had been Grand Master of England in 1729, became Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Munster and also of the Grand Lodge of Ireland, in connection with what appears to have been a reorganization of the latter Body. No more is heard of the Grand Lodge of WIunster, and from 1731 to the present date the succession of the Grand Officers of the Grand Lodge of Ireland is plain and distinct (Gould’s Concise History of Freemasonry, page 273). In the year 1730, The Constitutions of the Freemasons Containing the History, Charges, Regulations, etc., of that most Ancient and Right Worshipful Fraternity. For the use of the Lodges, was published at Dublin. A second edition was published in 1744, and a third, in 1751. In 1749, the Grand Master’s Lodge was instituted, which still exists; a singular institution, possessing several unusual privileges, among which are that its members are members of the Grand Lodge without the payment of dues, that the Lodge takes precedence of all other Lodges, and that any candidates nominated by the Grand Master are to be initiated without ballot.

In 1772, the Grand Lodge of Ireland recognized the Grand Lodge of the Ancient and entered into an alliance with it, which was also done in the same year by the Grand Lodge of Scotland. This does not appear to have given any offense to the regular Grand Lodge of England; for when that Body, in 1777, passed a vote of censure on the Lodges of Ancient Freemasons, it specially excepted from the censure the Lodges of Ireland and Scotland.

In 1779, an application was made to the Mother Kilwinning Lodge of Scotland, by certain Brethren in Dublin, for a Charter empowering them to form a Lodge to be called the High Knights Templar, that they might confer the Templar Degree. The Kilwinning Lodge granted the petition for the three Craft Degrees only, but at a later period this Lodge became, says Findel, the source of the Grand Encampment of Ireland.

The Grand Lodge holds jurisdiction over all the Blue Lodges. The Mark Degree is worked under the Grand Royal Arch Chapter. Next comes the Royal Arch, which formerly consisted of these three Degrees, the Excellent, Super-Excellent, and Royal Arch the first two being nothing more than passing the first two veils with each a separate obligation. But that system was abolished some years ago, and a new ritual framed something like the American, except that the King and not the High Priest is made the Presiding Officer.

The next Degrees are the Fifteenth, Sixteenth, and Seventeenth, which are under the jurisdiction of the Templar Grand Conclave, and are given to the candidate previous to his being created a Knight Templar. Next to the Templar Degree in the b Irish system comes the Eighteenth or Rose Croix, which is under the jurisdiction of the Grand Chapter of Prince Masons or Council of Rites, composed of the first three officers of all the Rose Croix Chapters, the Supreme Council having some years ago surrendered its authority over the Degree. The Twenty-eighth Degree or Knight of the Sun is the next conferred, and then the Thirtieth or Kadosh in a Body over which the Supreme Council has no control except to grant Certificates to its members. The Supreme Council confers the Thirty-first, Thirty-second, and Thirty-third Degrees, there being no Grand Consistory.

The Supreme Council of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite for Ireland was established by a Patent from the Supreme Council of the United States, at Charleston, dated August 13, 1824, by which the Duke of Leinster, John Fowler, and Thomas McGill were constituted a Supreme Council for Ireland, and under that authority it continues to work. Whence the advanced Degrees came into Ireland is not clearly known. The Rose Croix and Kadosh Degrees existed in Ireland long before the establishment of the Supreme Council. In 1808 Doctor Dalcho’s Orations were published at Dublin, by “the Illustrious College of Knights of K. H., and the Original Chapter of Prince Masons of Ireland.” It is probable that these Degrees were received from Bristol, England, where there are preserved the earliest English records of the Rose Croix.


See Prince Masons of Ireland


These Chapters existed in Paris from the year 1730 to 1740, and were thence disseminated through France. They consisted of Degrees, such as Irish Master, Perfect Irish Master, and Sublime Irish Master, which, it is said, were invented by the adherents of the house of Stuart when they sought to make Freemasonry a political means of restoring the exiled family to the throne of England. The claim has been made but is disputed that Ramsay, when he assumed his theory of the establishment of Freemasonry in Scotland by the Templars, who had Bed thither under d’Aurnont, took possession of these Degrees (if he did not, as some suppose, invent them himself) and changed their name, in deference to his theory, from Irish to Scottish, calling, for instance, the Degree of Matre Irlandou or Irish Master, the Maitre, Ecossais or Scottish Master.


The Irish Chapters are also called by some writers Irish Colleges.


See Irish Chapters


A philanthropic and benevolent Masonic society for rendering assistance to the needy. In 1789 Chevalier Ruspini, State Dentist to George III, established a Royal Masonic Institution for Girls in England with thirty pupils. In 1790 several Irish Brethren met together and made themselves responsible for the school fees only that is, they did not pay for the board or clothing of the daughters of some deceased Brethren From that inauspicious beginning has sprung the present Masonic Female Orphan School of Ireland.

In 1792, a small house, affording accommodation for twenty girls, was taken where the pupils were boarded. clothed and educated until such time as they could earn their own living. In 1852, after several removals, Burlington House was opened. An appeal for funds was made to the Brethren and met with a steady response. Great interest was taken in the work by Augustus, third Duke of Leinster, who reigned as Grand Master of Ireland from 1813 to 1874. Such was the quality of the instruction given that the Education Committee was able to select its teachers from among the girls who had been educated in the school.

The first annual grant of one hundred pounds by the Grand Lodge of Ireland was made in 1855, which has been continued- ever since. Girls were admitted from six to ten years of age and retained until they reached the age of fifteen, unless they were then drafted on to the domestic staff. An extension of the building and equipment was made in 1860 and a further extension accomplished in 1870, when a public ball was held. Nine years later a more general enlargement became necessary and a more general appeal for funds was made. In 1880 the foundation stone of the school at Ball’s Bridge, Dublin, was laid by James, first Duke of Abercorn who was Grand Master of Ireland from 1875 to 1885. Practically the entire sum appropriated for this building was subscribed by the Brethren.

In 1853 twenty-one girls were residents of the school; in 1875 there were forty-five; in 1890, eighty; and in 1925 there were one hundred four, but, in addition, more than sixty others were receiving extra grants to assist in their maintenance and education and annual sums are expended for the purpose.


The lectures teach us that at the building of King Solomon’s Temple there was not heard the sound of ax, hammer, or other metallic tool. But all the stones were hewn, squared, and numbered in the quarries; and the timbers felled and prepared in the forest of Lebanon, whence they were brought on floats by sea to Joppa, and thence carried by land to Jerusalem, where, on being put up, each part was found to fit with such exact nicety that the whole, when completed, seemed rather the handiwork of the Grand Architect of the Universe than of mere human hands. This can hardly be called a legend, because the same facts are substantially related in the First Book of Kings; but the circumstance has been appropriated in Freemasonry to symbolize the entire peace and harmony which should prevail among Freemasons when laboring on that spiritual temple of which the Solomonic Temple was the arche-type.


The sons of Abraham by Sarah and Hagar. They are recognized, from the conditions of their mothers, as the free-born and the bondman. According to Brother Oliver, the fact that the inheritance which was bestowed upon Isaac, the son of his free-born wife, was refused to Ishmael, the son of a slave woman, gave rise to the Masonic theory which constitutes a Landmark that none but the free-born are entitled to initiation.


The Hebrew word Off, the Latin salus mea, my aid. one of the five Masters, according to the Masonic myth, appointed by Solomon after the death of Hiram to complete the Temple.


non ads. Literally meaning in Hebrew, men of hewing, that is, hewers. The phrase was originally used by Anderson in the first edition of the Constitutions (page 10), but is not found in the original Hebrew (First Kings v, 18) to which he refers, where it is said that Solomon had fourscore “hewers in the mountains,” Chotzeb Bahar. But Ish Chotzeb is properly constructed according to the Hebrew idiom, and is employed by Anderson to designate the hewers whe, with the Giblim, or stonecutters, and the Bonai, or builders, amounted to eighty thousand, all of whom he calls (in his second edition, page ll) “bright Fellow Crafts.” But he distinguishes them from the thirty thousand who cut wood on Mount Lebanon under Adoniram.


The Hebrew expression meaning, Men of burden. Anderson thus designates the 70,000 laborers who, in the original Hebrew (First Kings v, 18) are called Noshe Sabal, or bearers of burdens. Anderson says “they were of the remains of the old Canaanites, and, being bondmen, are not to be reckoned among Masons” (see Constitutions, 1738, page 11). But in Webb’s system they constitute the Apprentices at the building of the Temple.


Corruptly, Ish Soudy. This expression is composed of the two Hebrew words, Ish, and Sod. The first of these words, Ish, means a man, and Sod signifies primarily a couch on which one ret clines. Hence Ish Sodi would mean, first, a man of my couch, one who reclines with me on the same seat, an indication of great familiarity and confidence. Thence followed the secondary meaning given to Sod, of familiar intercourse, consultation, or intimacy. Job (xix, 19) applies it in this sense, when, using Mati, a word synonymous with Ish, he speaks of Mati Sodi in the passage which the common version has translated thus: “all my inward friends abhorred me,” but which the marginal interpretation has more correctly rendered, “all the men of my secret.” Ish Sodi, therefore, in this Degree, very clearly means a man of my intimate counsel, a man of my choice, one seleeted to share with me a secret task or labor. Such was the position of every Select Master to King Solomon, and in this view those are not wrong who have interpreted Ish Sodi as meaning a Select Master.


Known also as the Tabula Isiaca, Mensa Isiaca, and Tabula Bembina. A monument often quoted by archeologists previous to the discovery and understanding of hieroglyphics. A flat rectangular bronze plate, inlaid with niello and silver, 56 by 36 inches in size. It consists of three compartments of figures of Egyptian deities and emblems; the central figure is Isis. It was sold by a soldier to a locksmith, bought by Cardinal Bembo in 1527, and is now in the Royal Museum in Turin.


The sister and the wife of Osiris, and worshiped by the Egyptians as the great goddess of nature. Her mysteries constituted one of the Degrees of the ancient Egyptian initiation (see Egyptian Mysterzes and Osiris).


This Body was formed in England of Hermetic students in 1887 to give instruction in the mediaeval occult sciences. The Rituals were written in English from old Rosicrucian Manuscripts supplemented by independent literary researches. Several other Temples emerged from this one, namely: Osiris, Wester-super-Mare; and Horus, Bradford, in England; Amen Ra, Edinburgh, Scotland, and Ahathoor, Paris, France. Following a resignation in 1897, the English Temples lapsed into abeyance.


In the Mohammedan faith, the name of the angel who, on the judgment morn, will sound the trumpet of resurrection.


There is said to have been a Lodge in Italy at Naples as early as 1750 but there is no definite evidence to prove this statement. In 1767, however, according to the English “Constitutions,” Don Nieholas Manuzzi was appointed Provincial Grand Master for Italy. A National Grand Lodge was founded by delegates from eight Lodges at a Convention held on February 27, 1764. The year 1767 opened a period of hardship for the Craft in Italy. Ferdinand IV was hostile to the Brethren and though Queen Caroline, his wife, did all she could to aid them, the Lodges finally in 1783 gave up their activities. Many Lodges and Grand Bodies were formed only to be suppressed and the result was a great confusion. In 1867 there existed a Grand Orient at Florence, two Supreme Councils at Palermo and a Grand Council at Milan. Brother Garibaldi (see Garibaldi), who was Grand Master of a Supreme Council at Palermo, then called a meeting on June 21, 1867, of all the Lodges in Italy. The result was that several of the Grand Bodies united and then combined the functions of a Supreme Grand Council of the Thirty-third Degree, a Symbolic Grand Lodge, and a Supreme Council of the Rite of Memphis.

Brother Oliver Day Street, in his excellent report to the Grand Lodge of Alabama, 1922, quotes from a letter to the International Bureau for Masonic Affairs, Neuchatel, Switzerland, as follows:”There are in Italy several Grand Lodges that are not recognized by any jurisdiction of other countries. There is a Grand Lodge in Florence, another at Naples; they are practicing rites of a rather occultist and mixed character, borrowed of rituals fallen long ago into desuetude.” A Grand Lodge of the Italian Symbolic Rite and a Grand Orient of Italy have been organized separately distinct from each other and there is also independently at work a Supreme Council of Italy, Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, founded in 1908. Under the dictatorship of Benito Mussolini, Premier of Italy, a leader of the Fascisti, organized on November 12, 1920, at Naples, and succeeding in gaining Rome and controlling the Italian Government, the Freemasons have been persecuted, their property destroyed, and prominent Brethren exiled.


A society of adepts, engaged in the search for the ITniversal Medicine, an organization that is now extinct. Mentioned by Fustier. The name is from the Greek and means healers.

I:. V:. I:. O:. L:.

The initials of a Latin sentence Inveni Verbum in Ore Leonis. Letters of significant words used in the Thirteenth Degree, Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite. They have reference to the recovery of the key of the Sacred Ark, which contains certain treasures. The Ark and its key having been lost in the forest during a battle which occurred when the Jews were journeying through the wilderness, the key was found in the mouth of a lion who dropped it upon the ground on the approach of the Israelites. Much symbolical teaching is deduced from the historical myth.


The symbolic jewel of the Fourth Degree, Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite. On the wards of the key is the Hebrew letter zain or Z.


A corruption of Zabud, which see.


The twenty-eight creations of the beneficent deity Ormudz, or Auramazda, in the Persian religious system.


The Hebrew words nanny Latin orietur Dominus. A word connected with the Seventh Degree of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite.

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