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Article # 241
Freemason's Monitor- Chapters 13 and 14

Author: Bro.Thomas Smith Webb    Posted on: Friday, May 4, 2007
General Article | 0 comments  | Post your comment

Chapter

[ Chapters 13 and 14 of the Freemasons Monitor by Bro.Thomas Smith Webb are posted herein. This concludes the book]

Chapter- 13.

Ceremony Of Laying The Foundation Stones of  Public Structures.

This ceremony is conducted  by the M. W. Grand  Master and his officers, assisted by such officers and members of subordinate Lodges as can conveniently attend. The chief magistrate and other civil officers of the place, where the building is to be erected, also generally attend on the occasion.

At the time appointed, the Grand Lodge is convened in some suitable place. A band of martial music is provided and the brethren appear in the insignia of the Order.

The Lodge is then opened by the Grand Master and the rules for regulating the procession are read by the Grand Secretary. The Lodge is then adjourned; after which the procession sets out in due form, in the following order:

Procession at Laying Foundation Stones.

Two Tylers with drawn Swords;
Tyler of the oldest Lodge with a drawn Sword;
Two Stewards of the oldest Lodge;
Entered Apprentices;
Fellow-Crafts;
Master Masons;
Past Secretaries;
Past Treasurers;
Past Junior Wardens;
Past Senior Wardens;
Mark Masters;

Past Masters;
Royal Arch Masons;
Select Masters;
Knights Templars;
Masters;
Music;
Grand Tyler with a drawn Sword;
Grand Stewards with white Rods;
A Past Master with a Golden Vessel containing Corn;
Principal Architect with Square, Level and Plumb;
Two Past Masters with Silver Vessels, one containing
Wine, and the other Oil;
Grand Secretary and Treasurer;
The Five Orders;
One large light, borne by a Past Master;
The Holy Bible, Square and Compasses,
borne by a Master of a Lodge,
supported by two Stewards on the right and left;
Two large Lights, borne by two Past Masters;
Grand.Chaplain;
Clergy and Orator;
Grand Wardens;
Deputy Grand Master;
The Master of.the oldest Lodge,
carrying the Book of Constitutions on a velvet cushion;
Grand Deacons with black Rods, on a line seven feet apart;
Grand Master;
Two Stewards with white Rods;
Grand Sword bearer with a drawn Sword.

A Triumphal Arch is usually erected at the place where the ceremony is to be performed. The procession passes through the arch and the brethren repairing to their stands, the Grand Master and his officers take their places on a temporary platform, covered with carpet. The Grand Master commands silence. An Ode on Masonry is sung, after which, the necessary preparations are made for laying the stone, on which is engraved the year of Masonry, the name and title of the Grand Master, etc., etc.

The stone is raised up, by means of an engine erected for that purpose and the Grand Chaplain or Orator repeats a short prayer.

The Grand Treasurer, then, by the Grand Master's command, places under the stone various sorts of coins and medals of the present age. Solemn music is introduced and the stone is let down into its place.

The principal architect then presents the working tools to the Grand Master, who applies the plumb, square and level to the stone, in their proper positions  and pronounces it to be Well Formed, True and Trusty.

The golden and silver vessels are next brought to the table and delivered. The former to the Deputy Grand Master and the latter to the Grand Wardens, who successively present them to the Grand Master and he, according to ancient ceremony, pours the corn, the wine  and the oil, which they contain on the stone, saying:

"May the all-bounteous Author of Nature bless the inhabitants of this place with all the necessaries, conveniences and comforts of this life, assist in the erection and completion of this building, protect the workmen against every accident and  long preserve this structure from decay  and grant to us all a supply of the Corn of nourishment, the Wine of refreshment and the Oil of joy!

                                                          "Amen. --So mote it be."

 

He then strikes the stone thrice with the mallet   and the Public Grand Honors are given.

[They are given in the following manner: Both arms are crossed on the breast, the left uppermost  and the open palms of the hands sharply striking the shoulders; they are then raised above the head, the palms striking each other  and then made to fall smartly upon the thighs. This is repeated three times and as there are three blows given each time, namely, on the breast, on the palms of the hands  and on the thighs, making nine concussions in all, the Grand Honors are technically said to be given "by three times three."] 

The Grand Master then delivers over to the Architect the various implements of architecture, intrusting him with the superintendence and direction of the work after which he reascends the platform and an oration suitable to the occasion is delivered.

A voluntary collection is made for the needy workmen and the sum collected is placed upon the stone by the Grand Treasurer.

A suitable song in honor of Masonry concludes the ceremony; after which, the procession returns to the place, whence it set out and the Lodge is closed in due form.

Section Four.

The fourth section contains the ceremony observed at the Dedication of Freemasons' Halls.

On the day appointed, the Grand Master and his officers, accompanied by the members of the Grand Lodge, meet in a convenient room near the place where the ceremony is to be performed and open in due and ample form, in the third degree of Masonry.

The Master of the Lodge to which the Hall to be dedicated belongs, being present, addresses the Grand Master as follows,

  Most Worshipful,
The brethren of -- Lodge, being animated with a desire of promoting the honor and interest of the Craft, have, at great pains and expense, erected a Masonic Hall for their convenience and accommodation. They are now desirous that the same should be examined by the M. W. Grand Lodge and if it meet their approbation, that it should be solemnly dedicated to Masonic purposes, agreeably to Ancient Form.

The Grand Master then directs the Grand Marshal to form the procession, when they move forward to the Hall to be dedicated. On entering, the music will continue, while the procession marches three times round the hall.

The carpet or flooring is then placed in the center and the Grand Master having taken the chair, under a canopy of state, the Grand Officers  and the Masters and Wardens of the Lodges repair to the places  previously prepared for their reception. The three Lights and the Gold and Silver Pitchers, with the corn, wine and oil, are placed round the Lodge, at the head of which stands the Altar, with the Holy Bible open  and the Square and Compasses laid thereon, with the Charter, Book of Constitutions  and By-laws.

An Anthem is sung  and an Exordium on Masonry given, after which,

the Architect addresses the Grand Master as follows,

  Most Worshipful,
Having been intrusted with the superintendence and management of the workmen employed in the erection of this edifice and having, according to the best of my ability, accomplished the task assigned me, I now return my thanks for the honor of this appointment and beg leave to surrender up the implements, which were committed to my care, when the foundation of this fabric was laid, humbly hoping that the exertions which have been made on this occasion, will be crowned with your approbation  and that of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge.

To which the Grand Master makes the following reply, Brother Architect,
The skill and fidelity displayed in the execution of the trust reposed in you, at the commencement of this undertaking, have secured the approbation of the Grand Lodge and they sincerely pray that this edifice may continue a lasting monument of the taste, spirit and liberality of its founders.

An Ode in honor of Masonry is sung, accompanied with instrumental music.

The Deputy Grand Master then rises and says,

Most Worshipful,

The hall in which we are now assembled  and the plan upon which it has been constructed, having met with your approbation, it is the desire of the Fraternity that it should now be dedicated according to ancient form and usage.

Whereupon a procession is formed in the following order,

Grand Sword-Bearer;
A Past Master with a Light;
A Past Master with a Bible, Square  and Compasses,
on a velvet cushion;
Two Past Masters, each with a Light;

Grand Secretary and Treasurer with Emblems;
Grand Junior Warden with Pitcher of Corn;
Grand Senior Warden with Pitcher of Wine;
Deputy Grand Master with Pitcher of Oil;
Grand Master;
Two Stewards with Rods;

All the other brethren keep their places and assist in performing an Ode, which continues during the procession, excepting only at the intervals of dedication. The Carpet being uncovered, the first time passing round it, the Grand Junior Warden presents the Pitcher of Corn to the Grand Master, who pours it out upon the Lodge, at the same time pronouncing,  "In the name of the Great Jehovah, to whom be all honor and glory, I do solemnly dedicate this Hall to Masonry."

[The Grand Honors are given.]

[They are given in the following manner: Both arms are crossed on the breast, the left uppermost  and the open palms of the hands sharply striking the shoulders; they are then raised above the head, the palms striking each other  and then made to fall smartly upon the thighs. This is repeated three times and as there are three blows given each time, namely, on the breast, on the palms of the hands  and on the thighs, making nine concussions in all, the Grand Honors are technically said to be given "by three times three."] 

The second time passing round the Lodge, the Grand Senior Warden presents the Pitcher of Wine to the Grand Master, who sprinkles it upon the Carpet, at the same time saying,

"In the name of the Holy Saints John, I do solemnly dedicate this Hall to Virtue."

[The Grand Honors are twice given.]

The third time passing round the Lodge, the Deputy Grand Master presents the Grand Master with the Pitcher of Oil, who pours it upon the Carpet, saying,  "In the name of the whole Fraternity, I do solemnly dedicate this Hall to Universal Benevolence."

[The grand honors are thrice given.]

A solemn Invocation is made to the Throne of Grace by the Grand Chaplain  and an Anthem sung; after which the Carpet is covered  and the Grand Master retires to his Chair.

An Oration is then delivered  and the ceremonies conclude with music.

The Grand Lodge is then closed in due or ample form.

Chapter - 14.

Forms Most Commonly Required.

Form Of A Petition For A Charter Or Warrant To Establish A New Lodge.

To the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of the State of --:

Your petitioners respectfully represent, that they are Ancient, Free and Accepted Master Masons. Having the prosperity of the Fraternity at heart, they are willing to exert their best endeavors to promote and diffuse the genuine principles of Masonry. For the convenience of their respective dwellings and for other good reasons, they are desirous of forming a new Lodge in the town of --, to be named -- Lodge. In consequence of this desire and for the good of the Craft, they pray for a warrant or dispensation, to empower them to assemble as a legal Lodge, to discharge the duties of Masonry in the several degrees of Entered Apprentice, Fellow-Craft  and Master Mason, in a regular and constitutional manner, according to the ancient form of the Fraternity  and the laws and regulations of the Grand Lodge. That they have nominated and do recommend A. B. to be the first Master, C. D. to be the first Senior Warden  and E. F. to be the first Junior Warden of said Lodge; that, if the prayer of the petition should be granted, they promise a strict conformity to all the constitutional laws, rules  and regulations of the Grand Lodge.

This petition must be signed by at least eight regular Master Masons, one of whom must be of the degree of Past Master  and recommended by the Lodge nearest the place where the new Lodge is to be held. It must be delivered to the Grand Secretary, whose duty it is to lay it before the Grand Lodge. In the recess of the Grand Lodge, application should be made in the same form to the Grand Master.

After a charter is granted by the Grand Lodge, the Grand Master appoints a day and hour for constituting and consecrating the new Lodge and for installing the Master, Wardens  and other officers. The Grand Master has power to appoint some worthy Past Master, with full power to consecrate, constitute and install the petitioners.

 

Form Of A Proxy From The Grand Master To A Present Or Past Master To Constitute And Consecrate A New Lodge  and To Install The Officers.

Office of the Grand Master of  The Grand Lodge Of  Free and Accepted Masons of the State of .

To All Whom it May Concern - Greetings
Know ye, that, reposing full confidence in the skill and Masonic ability of our Worshipful Brother --

I, Grand Master of the M. W. Grand Lodge of ---, do by these presents constitute and appoint him my Proxy, for me and in my name, to constitute and consecrate Lodge ---, No. --  and to install the officers thereof in due and ancient form, he making due return to me of his doings in the premises. Given under my hand and private seal, at the day and year first above written.
[PRIVATE SEAL.] M. W. GRAND MASTER.

Petition For A Dispensation To Confer Degrees On, Or Ballot For, A Candidate, in less than the Regular Time.

Hall of -- LODGE, NO --. -- 18 --,

To the M. W. Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of ---:

By a vote of this Lodge, I am instructed to ask you for a dispensation to pass the ballot (or confer the degrees, as the case may be) for M. A. B., who has petitioned this Lodge for initiation, (or is anxious to receive the degrees of F. C. and M. M., as the case may be,) at a special meeting, to be called for that purpose.

M. A. B. is -- years of age; his residence is --; his occupation is --. The case is one of emergency, for the reasons following: [Here state at length the reasons why a dispensation should be granted in the case.]
O. P., W. MASTER. [Seal of Lodge.]

Petition To be Presented by a Candidate for Initiation.

To the Worshipful Master Wardens and Brethren of -- Lodge, No. --, of F. and A. Masons:

The petition of the subscriber respectfully showeth that, having long entertained a favorable opinion of your ancient institution, he is desirous of being admitted a member thereof, if found worthy.

His place of residence is --; his age, -- years; his occupation, --.
(Signed) A. B.

Petition for Affiliation.

To the Worshipful Master Wardens and Brethren of -- Lodge, No. -- :

The petition of the subscriber respectfully showeth that he is a Master Mason  and has been regularly dimitted from --- Lodge No. --, under the jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of ---  and is desirous of becoming a member of your Lodge.

His residence is ---; his occupation is ---. Should his petition be granted, he promises obedience to the by-laws and regulations of your Lodge.
(Signed) A. B.

 

Petition for Dimit.

DATE, -- 186-.

To the Worshipful Masters, Wardens  and Brethren of Lodge, No. -- :

The undersigned, a Master Mason  and member in good standing in your Lodge, respectfully asks to withdraw from membership  and that a dimit be issued to him certifying such fact.

The reasons which induce this request are: [Here set forth the reasons, for instance, about to remove to the jurisdiction of another Lodge, to join in a petition for new Lodge, etc., etc., as the case may be.]
(Signed) A. B.

 

Form of a Dimit.

HALL of -- Lodge No.--, held at -- by authority of the Grand Lodge of ---. I hereby certify that at a --- meeting of --- Lodge No. ---, held on the -- day of --, A. L. 586 -, Bro. --, by consent of said Lodge, withdrew his membership from the same; he being at the time a worthy Master Mason, [here state Masonic oficial rank, P. M., P. S. W., etc., as the case may be,] in good standing  and having paid all dues assessed against him.

By order of said Lodge.
[SEAL.] ---, Sec'y.

Petition for a Diploma

May be made verbally by the applicant in person, or through any brother.

Form of Diploma or Grand Lodge Certificate.

Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of the State of . . . . . .

I hereby certify, that -- Lodge, No. --, is regularly constituted and held under the authority and jurisdiction of this Grand Lodge  and that -- is Worshipful Master, --- is Senior Warden  and is Junior Warden of said Lodge.

In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and affixed the seal of the Grand Lodge, at ---, this --- day of -- A. L. 586, A. D. 186-.
[SEAL.] ---, Grand Secretary.

We, the Master and Wardens of --- Lodge, No. ---, held under the authority and jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of F. and A. Masons of the State of ---, do hereby certify that our worthy and well-beloved brother --- (who has written his name below,) is a Master Mason, in good standing in our Lodge  and he is hereby recommended to the favor and protection of the Craft throughout the globe.

Given under our hands and the seal of our Lodge, at --, this -- day of --, A. L. 586-, A. D. 186-.
--, W. M.
--, S. M.
--, J. W.
Attest:
---, Secretary.
Signature of ---

Public Grand Honours.

The Public Grand Honors are given on all public occasions in the presence of the profane as well as the initiated. They are used at the laying of cornerstones of public buildings, or in other services in which the ministrations of the Fraternity are required  and especially in funerals. They are given in the following manner: Both arms are crossed on the breast, the left uppermost  and the open palms of the hands sharply striking the shoulders; they are then raised above the head, the palms striking each other  and then made to fall smartly upon the thighs. This is repeated three times  and as there are three blows given each time, namely, on the breast, on the palms of the hands  and on the thighs, making nine concussions in all, the Grand Honors are technically said to be given "by three times three." On the occasion of funerals, each one of these honors is accompanied by the words "the will of God is accomplished: so mote it be," audibly pronounced by the brethren. --- Mackey's Lexicon.

Please peruse Article No.238 for the write up about the learned Author.


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