refers to the Grand Lodge of Switzerland. A Lodge was organized at Geneva in 1736, the Worshipful Master, a Scotchman, being the following year appointed a Provincial Grand Master by the Grand Lodge of England. This Lodge was forbidden by the Government to initiate native citizens. Notwithstanding this handicap, the Institution thrived. Nine Lodges met in Convention on June 1, 1769, and on June 24 of that year they formed the Independent Grand Lodge of Geneva. ,another Lodge, named Espérance, meaning Hope, was chartered at Berne by the Grand Orient of France on September 14, 1802.
This became a Provincial Grand Lodge under an English Warrant in 1815. The Helvetic Grand Orient was formed in 1810. Several of the Lodges working under these two organizations founded the National Grand Lodge of Switzerland. There were also some other Lodges using the ritual of the Rectified Rite under the control of a Grand Directorate. This lack of unity led to various efforts at organized cooperation and several General Assemblies of Freemasons in Switzerland were held at Zurich, Bern and Basle in 1836 and for some years later. The union so long patiently sought was perfected at a Convention held at Zurich, July 22 to 24, 1844, when fourteen Lodges agreed to a Constitution and organized the Grand Lodge Alpina, the name being a happy allusion to the Alps, a picturesque mountain range.
The Encyclopedia Masonica exists to preserve the wealth of information that has been generated over the centuries by numerous Masonic authors. As Freemasonry is now Speculative and not Operative, the work of a Mason is now conducted in the quarries of symbolism, literature, history and scholasticism. Freemasonry encourages intellectual exploration and academic achievement in its members and many Masons over the years have taken up this calling. The result has been that an incredible amount of philosophy, symbolic speculation and academic insights have been created. However, as Freemasonry teaches, human knowledge is frail and fragile. It is easily lost in the turnings of the ages and unforeseen catastrophes can result in great setbacks to human knowledge.
For too long these great works have sat on forgotten shelves, gathering dust and concealing the light that could be shed on the darkness of our ignorance. The Encyclopedia Masonica has been created to act as an ark, sailing through time, to ensure that future generations of Freemasons have access to the same knowledge that inspired the Brethren that came before them. It will contain the works of such Masonic Luminaries as Albert G. Mackey, Manly Palmer Hall, G.S.M. Ward, Albert Pike and many others. The Encyclopedia Masonica is a living work and the volunteers of Universal Co-Masonry will continue to labor until the most comprehensive Masonic reference work the world has ever seen has been created. The Encyclopedia Masonica is open to any who wish to use it and will remain open so that the treasures contained within may increase the wealth of all those who seek its wisdom.
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