Remarks On The Third Lecture
BOOK II -
including an Illustration of the Lectures
illustrations of masonry
In treating with propriety on any subject, it is necessary to observe a
regular course. In the former Degrees of Masonry, we have recapitulated the
contents of the several Sections, and should willingly have pursued the same
plan in this Degree, did not the variety of particulars of which it is composed,
render it impossible to give an abstract, without violating the laws of the
Order. It may be sufficient to remark, that, in twelve Sections, of which the
lecture consists, every circumstance that respects government and system,
antient lore and deep research, curious invention and ingenious discovery, is
accurately traced, while the mode of proceeding on public as well as on private
occasions is satisfactorily explained. Among the brethren of this degree, the
land-marks of the Order are preserved; and from them is derived that fund of
informations, which expert and ingenious craftsmen only can afford, whole
judgement has been matured by years and experience. To a complete knowledge of
this lecture, few attain; but it is an infallible truth, that he who acquires by
merit the mark of pre-eminence which this degree affords, receives a reward
which amply compensates all his past diligence and assiduity.
From this class, the rulers of the Craft are selected; as it is only from
those who are capable of giving instruction, that we can properly expect to
The First Section
The ceremony of initiation into the third degree, is particularly specified
in this branch of the lecture, and many useful instructions are given.
Such is the importance of this Section, that we may safely declare, that the
person who is unacquainted with it, is ill qualified to act as a ruler or
governor of the work of Masonry.
Prayer at Initiation into the Third Degree
O Lord, direct us to know and serve thee aright! prosper our laudable
undertakings! and grant, that, as we increase in knowledge, we may improve in
virtue, and still farther promote thy honour and glory! Amen
Charge at Initiation into the Third Degree
Your zeal for our institution, the progress you have made in our art, and
your conformity to our regulations, have pointed you out as a proper object of
favour and esteem.
In the character of a Master mason, you are henceforth to correct the errors
and irregularities of uninformed brethren, and guard them against a breach of
fidelity. To improve the morals and manners of men in society, must be your
constant care; and with this view, you are to recommend to your inferiors,
obedience and submission; to your equals, courtesy and affability; to your
superiors, kindness and condescension. Universal benevolence you are to
inculcate; and, by the regularity of your behaviour, afford the best examples
for the conduct of others. The ancient landmarks of our Order, now instructed to
your care, you are to preserve sacred and inviolable; and never suffer an
infringement of our rites, or countenance a deviation from our established
usages and customs.
Duty, honour, and gratitude, now bind you to be faithful to every truth; to
support with becoming dignity your new character; and to enforce, by example and
precept, the tenets of our system. Let no motive, therefore, make you swerve
from your duty, violate your vows, or betray your trust; but be true and
faithful, and imitate the example of that celebrated artist whom you have once
represented. Thus your exemplary conduct must convince the world, that merit is
the title to our privileges, and that on you our favours have not been
The Second Section
The Second Section is an introduction to the proceedings of a Chapter of
Master-masons, and illustrates several points well known to experienced
craftsmen. It investigates, in the ceremony of opening a chapter, the most
important circumstances in the two preceding degrees.
The Third Section
The Third Section commences the historical traditions of the Order, which are
chiefly collected from sacred record, and other authentic documents.
The Fourth Section
The Fourth Section farther illustrates the historical traditions of the
Order, and presents to view a finished picture, of the utmost consequence to the
The Fifth Section
The Fifth Section continues the explanation of the historical traditions of
The Sixth Section
The Sixth Section concludes the historical traditions of the Order.
The Seventh Section
The Seventh Section illustrates the hieroglyphical emblems restricted to the
Third Degree, and inculcates many useful lessons, in order to extend knowledge,
and promote virtue.
This Section is indispensably necessary to be understood by every Master of a
The Eighth Section
The Eighth Section treats of the government of the society, and the
disposition of the rulers in different degrees. It is therefore generally
rehearsed at installations.
The Ninth Section
The Ninth Section recites the qualifications of the rulers, and illustrates
the ceremony of installation, in the grand lodge, as well as in private lodges.
The Tenth Section
The Tenth Section comprehends the ceremonies of constitution and
consecration, with a variety of particulars explanatory of those ceremonies.
The Eleventh Section
The Eleventh Section illustrates the ceremonies used at laying the foundation
stones of churches, chapels, palaces, hospitals, &c. also the ceremonies
observed at the Dedication of Lodges, and at the Interment of Master Masons.
The Twelfth Section
The Twelfth Section contains a recapitulation of the most essential points of
the lectures in all the degrees, and corroborates the whole by infallible
Having thus given a general summary of the lectures restricted to the
different degrees of masonry, and made such remarks on each degree, as may tend
to illustrate the subjects treated, little farther will be wanted to encourage
the zealous mason to persevere in his researches. He who has traced the Art in a
regular progress, from the commencement of the First to the conclusion of the
Third Degree, according to the plan here laid down, will have amassed an ample
store of useful learning; he will reflect with pleasure on the good effects of
his past diligence and attention, and by applying the whole to the general
advantage of society, will secure to himself the veneration of masons, and the
approbation of all good men.
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