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The Royal Order of Scotland

The King of Scots Hereditary Grand Master

Provincial Grand Lodge of Kent

Consecrated 9th May 1974

Some background notes for the greater appreciation of the Order.


The Royal Order of Scotland


Where did it come from? The Order had its birth in London sometime between 1725 and 1741. It was originally titled the "Heredom of Kilwinning with its second degree "Order of the Rosy Cross". Apart from the Craft, it is the oldest Masonic Order in existence. It was not until about 1740 that the Rose Croix and probably later still, that the Masonic Order of Knight Templars emerged. Unlike the Craft, the ritual of the Royal Order is virtually unaltered since it was written.


Why between 1725 and 1741? We know the date was after 1725 as the ritual mentions the "Three Degrees of St John's Masonry" and the third Degree did not emerge in Craft Masonry until about 1725. We know that it was before 1741 as a Provincial Grand Master's Patent was granted to William Mitchell by the Provincial Grand Master of South Britain (England) "this twenty- second day of July A.D. 1750 ... and in the Ninth Year of my Provincial Grand Mastership."


Why was it written? The Order appears to have begun as a protest against the de-Christianisation of the Craft which was occurring during the early part of the 18th Century. Following the foundation of the Premier Grand Lodge at the Goose and Gridiron in St Paul's Churchyard, London in 1717, the Revd Dr James Anderson (as he was to become) was commissioned to write a Book of Constitutions. Under the heading "The Charges of a Free-Mason. 1. Concerning God and Religion "


Anderson's Constitutions of 1723 stated "... But though in ancient times Masons were charg'd in every Country to be of the Religion of that Country or Nation, whatever it. was. yet 'tis now thought more expedient only to oblige them to that Religion in which all men agree, leaving their particular opinions to themselves:..."


One can imagine the anger and unhappiness which London Freemasons of 1723 might have felt. If it wasn't bad enough that four Lodges had met together and founded a Grand Lodge which sought jurisdiction over other private Lodges they were now producing rules and regulations which changed the very fabric from which Freemasons were made.



The protest can be heard, loud and clear, in answers to the very first questions in the first Lecture in the Chapter. "What is the highest and most sublime Degree of Masonry?" "This one!" is the resounding reply. "To what intent was it re-established and amendments made thereon?" "To correct the errors and reform the abuses which had crept in among the three Degrees of St John's Masonry " or, in other words, to preserve the Masonry we have always known. Bearing in mind that it was a protest it is reasonable to suppose that it would have appeared nearer to the event which caused the protest than further away from it. One can guess, therefore, that it was written closer to 1725 than to 1741 when there is clear evidence to show that it was well established. Also, by the length and intricacy of the ritual it can reasonable be supposed that it was the work of several very dissatisfied brethren from several different Lodges. Possibly each one insisting that some of his own Lodge's working be included, so that the whole is an amalgam of London Craft Rituals dating from about 1730.


The last trace of the Order in England is in 1753. Thereafter, it appears to have died out. The most reasonable explanation would be the foundation of the Grand Lodge of the Antients in 1751. Up until a short time before its formation it had been the intention to restrict membership to Christians although, in a fairly last minute change, Jews were to be admitted too. This must have largely satisfied the brethren of the Order of Heredom of Kilwinning. By this time several protesters would no doubt have died and, with the steam taken out of the protest by passage of time, there probably seemed little point in continuing.


How and why did the Order survive and become Scottish?

The Patent mentioned earlier, granted to William Mitchell, was to enable him to Erect a Provincial Grand Lodge at the Hague in the Seven United Provinces (Holland) where he worked. Whilst he returned to the Hague it seems certain that he never exercised his right to erect that Provincial Grand Lodge. In 1753 he returned to his home in Edinburgh and in 1754 started recruiting for the Order there. Whilst there is no trace of his ritual, he must have been provided with one when he left London for Holland and it is probable that the original ritual of the Order when it first appeared in London is the same (basically, at least) as that in use today.


On the 4th July 1767, when William Mitchell went out of office, the Edinburgh Chapter elevated itself to the Grand Lodge.


The Bruce Tradition. It was in the "Laws of the Royal Heredom" which were approved on the 5th July 1767 that the Bruce tradition was established. It did not exist when the Order first appeared and is an addition by the Scots after Scotland acquired control of the Order. The main difficulty about the Royal Order's Bruce tradition is that its claims are glaringly impossible. Nevertheless other Scots additions which are few in number do make more sense. Mount Moriah. It is said in the opening section of the Heredom Degree that the Order was 'first established" on Mount Moriah emblematic of Judaism from which Christianity sprang. The next object of the ritual reviser was to connect Scotland with Christianity. It was from Icolmkill or Iona that the first Christian Church of Scotland developed. St Columba landed there from Ireland in 563 A.D. and used Iona as the base for missionary journeys into mainland Scotland.


Kilwinning was used to connect Christianity in Scotland with Masonry. There was already a mention in Anderson's Constitutions of the connections. It was current belief in England and Ireland in the 1720s that the Kings of Scotland were, from the earliest times, Hereditary Grand Masters of the Lodge of builders connected with the Abbey of Kilwinning - a Lodge like all old Operative Lodges in Scotland - composed entirely of Christians.


Points of antiquity to note. (I) See how the Wardens both sit in the West (as they did in Lodges in ancient times) thus forming a triangle with the Master, symbol of the Christian three-in-one Deity. (II) There are no Deacons as in today's Craft Lodges. They were not "invented" until about 1765. (Ill) Note the prominence given to Noah and his family who were important in Craft Masonry in the early part of the 18th Century but not today. (IV) Note the very brief of mention of the Hiramic Legend. (V) Also the two pillars of Enoch. These were the pillars which featured in early Freemasonry, they being the archives of knowledge and wisdom, before they were replaced by those with which we are more familiar.


Peculiar Words and phrases.

Heredom is a juxtaposition of two mediaeval Scottish words, (i) Her or Here derived from the Latin Herus meaning Lord, Master or Owner and (ii) the suffix Dom equivalent to the suffix "...hood" or "... ship". Therefore the word Heredom may be translated as Lordship or Mastership or even Knighthood.


Tirshatha. Means "Most Excellent" (as in the Royal Arch Chapter) and is referred to in Nehemiah 7:65 "And the Tirshatha said unto them that they should not eat of the most holy things ..." interpreted in The Jerusalem Bible as "And His Excellency forbade them to eat the sacred foods"


Party coloured fame is another way of saying rumour. The word Party should be spelt parti which in this context means many coloured or motley. In mediaeval mystery plays the character Rumour always wore multi-coloured dress and the prologue to Shakespeare's Henry IV Part Two mentions "Rumour, painted, full of tongues".


Cain, Achin and Eni. Of uncertain origin, the key lies in the Flather Manuscript, a late 18th Century copy of part of a North of England ritual, similar to our Heredom of Kilwinning, in which Beauty lies dead, killed by three ruffians, Gain, Ambition and Envy.


Thirty shillings Scots money. The word "shilling" results from the pronunciation of the Gaelic word for a penny which is "sgillin .


Salathiel also known as Shealtiel meaning "Asked of God". Shealtiel was the son of Jeconiah, in the line of David, born directly following the deportation to Babylon. He was the father of Zerubbabel. (See Matthew 1:12)

Jehovah-Jireh. Meaning "The Lord - He will provide". The place where Abraham beheld the ram caught in the thicket by his horns, which he used as the burnt sacrifice in place of his son Isaac. The place was afterwards called by Abraham "Jehovah-Jireh". (See Genesis 22:14)


Graham Smith PGM Kent

With acknowledgements to Bro EU Smith PPGM South Eastern Counties and to "The Royal Order of Scotland" by Robert Strathern Lindsay from which sources much of the information has been obtained.



On the origin of two words used in the Royal Order of Scotland


On the evening of my Advancement and Promotion into the order the names of two documents came to be discussed.

The first of these was the Kalendar, the year book of the Order. There was a mention that the reason for spelling the word with a K rather than a C was unknown but possibly a Scottish peculiarity. In the vast majority of European and Slavonic languages their word is spelled with a K. The notable exceptions are English, and very strangely the Latinate languages such as French, Spanish and Italian, where their words begin with a C. I say this is strange, because the word Kalendar itself is directly derived from Latin. The Romans reckoned dates in a quite different way from ours. Each month had three special days, which marked particular phases of the moon. These days were called the Kalends, the Nones and the Ides. Despite them ending in 's\ these words are all singular nouns. The Kalends was the day of the New Moon, the Nones of the First Quarter, and the Ides of the Full Moon. Students of history, or even of the Carry On films, will have heard of the Ides of March, which was the day that Julius Caesar was assassinated. The Kalends corresponded to the 1st of the month, the Nones to the 5th and the Ides always fell 8 days later on the 13th. There were four exceptions, and I recall from schooldays a little piece of doggerel rhyme which ran, "In March, July, October and May, the Nones falls on the Seventh day" - which implies that the Ides falls on the 15th of those four months. Caesar was therefore assassinated on the 15th March, 44 BC. The Romans didn't know they were living BC of course, and they would have called that year 710 AUC (Ab Urbe Condita - from the building of the city) in their dating system. The Romans had a very peculiar way of expressing dates; they had no concept of weeks, but counted backwards from the next fixed day. The last day of any month would be expressed logically as "the day before the Kalends" of the following month, but the day before that would be expressed as "the third day before the Kalends" rather than the second day before, because they included the day and the fixed day in the count. The third day of a month would be either the third or the fifth day before the Nones, depending on which month they were talking about, and the day after the Nones would be the eighth day before the Ides. The word calendar is directly derived from the Latin word Kalends, and it is the British and the Latinate countries which mutated the K into a C over time.

The second document mentioned was the diploma. A diploma (taken without alteration from the Greek Δίπλωμα - diploma, meaning "folded paper") is a certificate or deed issued by an educational institution, such as a university, that testifies that the recipient has successfully completed a particular course of study

or confers an academic degree.. The words diplomat and diplomacy have the same origin, from the official "folded papers" of accreditation delivered by ambassadors or delegates. This implies a document is not strictly a diploma unless and until it has been folded in half.

Sir Robert Proficient, January 2013



Towards the end of 1972, in consequence of a number of discussions between Brethren concerning their inability to attend the meetings of the Provincial Grand 'Lodge of the South Eastern Counties, due to the differing places of meeting and the timing of same, it was thought that the time had arrived when a Provincial Grand Lodge of Kent would be of benefit to the Royal Order of Scotland.


W.Bro. A G Dennis then made an approach to W. Bro F W Friday requesting his sanction to approach the Provincial Grand Lodge of the South Eastern Counties, so as to discuss the possibility of forming a new Provincial Grand Lodge for Kent.


An approach' was made to the R.W.Bro. Oskar C Klagge, Provincial Grand Master for the South Eastern Counties of England, requesting his support and blessing on the project, and his good offices in approaching Grand Lodge to obtain approval of the formation of the new Province. R. W. Bro. Oskar C Klagge immediately gave his blessing and very generously suggested not only doing all he could for the promotion, but insisted on being a Founder of the new Province. On 8th June 1973, the Provincial Grand Lodge of the South Eastern Counties of England made formal approach to the Grand Secretary.


In July 1973 we received from the Grand Secretary the Petition to enable us to proceed. It was decided that W.Bro. Frederick William Friday be nominated for approval of Grand Lodge as the first R.W. Provincial Grand Master, with W. Bro. Albert George Dennis as the Deputy Provincial Grand Master,

and Bro. Sidney Ernest Ward as the Substitute Provincial Grand Master.


There were thirty-one Founders who signed the Petition, and the Grand Lodge was pleased to form a Deputation headed by R.W. Deputy Grand Master and Governor, Bro. The Earl of Elgin and Kincardine, to erect and consecrate the new Provincial Grand Chapter and Lodge, which ceremony took place at the Greenway Hotel, London Road, West Mailing, Kent on the 9th May 1974. The proceedings were carried out in a most memorable and impressive manner, and the Grand Officers forming the Deputation were unanimously elected honorary members of the new Province.




Deputy Grand Master and Governor


M.B.E. K.L.G.

Past Substitute Governor

Bro. ALEX F. BUCHAN M.B.E. O.St.J. B.Sc., PhD. F.R.S.E

Grand Secretary


Prov. Grand Master Bro. F.W. Friday

Prov. Dep. Grand Master Bro. A.G. Dennis

Prov. Subs. Grand Master Bro. S.E. Ward

Prov. G. Senior Warden Bro. J.F. Spalding

Prov. G. Junior Warden Bro. G.P. Rudgard

Prov G. Secretary Bro. W. Simpson

Prov. G. Treasurer Bro. R.G.F. Vallance

Prov. G. Chaplain Bro. Rev. L.J.L. Boag

Prov. C. Sword Bearer Bro. W.H. Ladd

Prov. C. Banner Bearer Bro. E.W. Callaghan

Prov. C. Marischal Bro. E.E. White

Prov. Dep. C. Marischal Bro. R.J. Anderson

Prov. G Introdudor & Examiner Bro. W.A. Wotton

Prov. C. Constable of the Tower Bro. A.C. Brill

Prov. G. 1st Steward Bro. B. Whinnett

Prov. G. 2nd Steward Bro. G.W.S. Davie

Prov. C. Asst. Secretary Bro. H.J. Wheatley

Prov. G. Director of Music Bro. D.F. Andrews

Prov. C. Dept. Director Bro. F. Wain

Prov. G. Guarder Bro. W.P Apps

Bro. A.V. Alvey, Bro L.R. Austin: Bro J.E. Bullock,

Bro. R.W. Cade. Bro. E.P.P. Colohan, Bro. W.J. Fry,

Bro. O.C. Klagge. Bro. A.B. Masson, Bro. J.K. Miller,

Bro. A.S. Semple, Bro. C.J. Sutton.

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