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Freemasonry in Cardiff
Becoming a Freemason in Cardiff
Becoming a Freemason
The second Schaw Statutes of December 1599 having made it compulsory for Scottish lodges to have a secretary, early documentation there is rich in comparison with England, where actual minutes start in 1712 in York, and 1723 in London. Records for the Lodge of Edinburgh (Mary's Chapel) No.1 extend back to the sixteenth century. Minutes from the Premier Grand Lodge of England, the Antient Grand Lodge of England, and the Grand Lodge of All England meeting at York trace the organisational development and rivalries within eighteenth century English Freemasonry.
The oldest minute book discovered is that of Aitchison's Haven, a location just outside Musselburgh, in East Lothian. The first entry records Robert Widderspone being made Fellow of Craft on 9 January 1598.
The records of the Lodge of Edinburgh (Mary's Chapel) No.1 extend back to 1598, making them an important historical source as the longest continuous masonic record. David Murray Lyon's history of the lodge, published in 1873, mined the records of Edinburgh's oldest lodge, and produced a history of Scottish Freemasonry. The first entry, on 28 December 1598, is a copy of the first Schaw statutes. The next year, on the last day of July, the first proper minute records disciplinary proceedings against a member who employed a cowan, or unqualified mason. The first entries are terse and not always helpful, expanding as successive secretaries became more conscientious. The records trace the development of the lodge from an operative to a speculative society.
The minutes of the old lodge at York, which later called itself the Grand Lodge of All England, give a glimpse of Masonry outside the Grand Lodges of the period. The minutes are erratic, with spaces of some years between some entries. It is often impossible to tell if the minutes are lost, were never taken, or the lodge did not meet at all. They do, however, contain the full text of a speech by the antiquary Francis Drake in 1726, in which he discusses the contemplation of geometry, and the instructive lectures which ought to be occurring in lodges. He used the York legend to claim precedence of his own lodge over all others in England, and being a more careful historian than the compilers of the Old Charges, Edwin the son of Athelstan became Edwin of Northumbria, adding three centuries to his lodge's pedigree. Later minutes show the lodge adding ritual, and developing a five degree system from a single ceremony where a candidate was admitted and made a Fellow Craft in one evening. The York account of the split between the Premier Grand Lodge of England and the Lodge of Antiquity provides a balance to the charged prose of William Preston. The minutes cease for the final time in 1792.
London Grand Lodges
Minutes of both of the Grand Lodges which finally formed the United Grand Lodge of England are preserved in their archives. Plans by Quatuor Coronati Lodge to publish them all were interrupted by the First World War, and only one volume was published, covering the minutes of the Premier Grand Lodge of England from their first minutes in 1723 to 1739. The first of five volumes of Grand Lodge minutes contained three lists of subscribing lodges and their members, dating from 1723, 1725, and 1730. The lodges are first numbered in John Pine's engraved list of 1729. All three manuscript lists have had lodges added after their compilation, but in spite of this they still trace the development of the first Grand Lodge during a critical period in its development, as it moved from being an association of London lodges to a national institution. No further lists were included in the minutes. They start on 24 June 1723 with the approval of Anderson's constitutions, and the resolution that no alteration or innovation in the "Body of Masonry" could occur without the approval of Grand Lodge. The Earl of Dalkeith was then elected as the next Grand Master, but his chosen deputy, John Theophilus Desaguliers, was only approved by 43 votes to 42. After dinner the outgoing Grand Master, the Duke of Wharton, asked for a recount. This being refused, he walked out. Many such human touches are revealed in the minutes, together with the beginnings of masonic charities and discipline of masons and lodges. There are no minutes for the year 1813, and only rough notes from the Antients, leaving a gap in the run-up to union that must be spanned from other sources.
At the dawn of the Grand Lodge era, during the 1720s, James Anderson composed the first printed constitutions for Freemasons, the basis for most subsequent constitutions, which specifically excluded women from Freemasonry. As Freemasonry spread, women began to be added to the Lodges of Adoption by their husbands who were continental masons, which worked three degrees with the same names as the men's but different content. The French officially abandoned the experiment in the early 19th century. Later organisations with a similar aim emerged in the United States, but distinguished the names of the degrees from those of male Masonry.
Maria Deraismes was initiated into Freemasonry in 1882, then resigned to allow her lodge to rejoin their Grand Lodge. Having failed to achieve acceptance from any masonic governing body, she and Georges Martin started a mixed masonic lodge that worked masonic ritual. Annie Besant spread the phenomenon to the English-speaking world. Disagreements over ritual led to the formation of exclusively female bodies of Freemasons in England, which spread to other countries. Meanwhile, the French had re-invented Adoption as an all-female lodge in 1901, only to cast it aside again in 1935. The lodges, however, continued to meet, which gave rise, in 1959, to a body of women practising continental Freemasonry.
In general, Continental Freemasonry is sympathetic to Freemasonry amongst women, dating from the 1890s when French lodges assisted the emergent co-masonic movement by promoting enough of their members to the 33rd degree of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite to allow them, in 1899, to form their own grand council, recognised by the other Continental Grand Councils of that Rite. The United Grand Lodge of England issued a statement in 1999 recognising the two women's Grand Lodges there to be regular in all but the participants. While they were not, therefore, recognised as regular, they were part of Freemasonry "in general". The attitude of most regular Anglo-American Grand Lodges remains that women Freemasons are not legitimate Masons.
In 2018 guidance was released by the United Grand Lodge of England stating that, in regard to transgender women, "A Freemason who after initiation ceases to be a man does not cease to be a Freemason". The guidance also states that transgender men are allowed to apply to become Freemasons.
Main articles: Anti-Masonry and Suppression of Freemasonry
Masonic Temple of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, one of the few Masonic temples that survived the Franco dictatorship in Spain.
Anti-Masonry (alternatively called Anti-Freemasonry) has been defined as "opposition to Freemasonry",but there is no homogeneous anti-Masonic movement. Anti-Masonry consists of widely differing criticisms from diverse (and often incompatible) groups who are hostile to Freemasonry in some form. Critics have included religious groups, political groups, and conspiracy theorists, in particular, those espousing Masonic conspiracy theories or the Judeo-Masonic conspiracy theory. Certain prominent Anti-Masons, such as Nesta Helen Webster (1876 – 1960), have exclusively criticized "Continental Masonry" while considering "Regular Masonry" an honorable association.
There have been many disclosures and exposés dating as far back as the 18th century. These often lack context, may be outdated for various reasons, or could be outright hoaxes on the part of the author, as in the case of the Taxil hoax.
These hoaxes and exposés have often become the basis for criticism of Masonry, often religious or political in nature or are based on suspicion of corrupt conspiracy of some form. The political opposition that arose after the American "Morgan Affair" in 1826 gave rise to the term Anti-Masonry, which is still in use in America today, both by Masons in referring to their critics and as a self-descriptor by the critics themselves.
Freemasonry has attracted criticism from theocratic states and organised religions for supposed competition with religion, or supposed heterodoxy within the fraternity itself and has long been the target of conspiracy theories, which assert Freemasonry to be an occult and evil power.
Christianity and Freemasonry
Main article: Opposition to Freemasonry within Christianity
Although members of various faiths cite objections, certain Christian denominations have had high-profile negative attitudes to Masonry, banning or discouraging their members from being Freemasons.
Cardiff is the capital city of Wales and a county. Officially known as the City and County of Cardiff, it is the United Kingdom's eleventh-largest city and the main commercial centre of Wales. Cardiff is the base for the Senedd (Welsh Parliament), most national cultural institutions and the majority of the Welsh media. At the 2011 census, the unitary authority area population was estimated to be 346,090, and the wider urban area 479,000. In 2011, Cardiff was ranked sixth in the world in the National Geographic magazine's list of alternative tourist destinations. Cardiff is the most popular visitor destination in Wales with 21.3 million visitors in 2017.
Cardiff is the county town of the historic county of Glamorgan, and, between 1974 and 1996, South Glamorgan. Cardiff is part of the Eurocities network of the largest European cities. A small town until the early 19th century, its prominence as a major port for the transport of coal following the arrival of industry in the region contributed to its rise as a major city. In 1905, Cardiff was made a city. In 1955, it was proclaimed the capital of Wales. In the 2011 Census, the population was 346,100. The Cardiff Built-up Area covers a slightly larger area outside the county boundary and includes the towns of Dinas Powys and Penarth.
Since the 1980s, Cardiff has seen significant development. A new waterfront area at Cardiff Bay contains the Senedd building (the Welsh Parliament) and the Wales Millennium Centre arts complex. Current developments include the continuation of the redevelopment of the Cardiff Bay and city centre areas with projects such as the Cardiff International Sports Village, the BBC drama village, and a new business district in the city centre. Sporting venues in the city include the Principality Stadium—the national stadium and the home of the Wales national rugby union team—Sophia Gardens (the home of Glamorgan County Cricket Club), Cardiff City Stadium (the home of Cardiff City football team and the Wales football team), Cardiff International Sports Stadium (the home of Cardiff Amateur Athletic Club), Cardiff Arms Park (the home of Cardiff Blues and Cardiff RFC rugby union teams) and Ice Arena Wales (the home of Cardiff Devils ice hockey team). The city hosted the 1958 British Empire and Commonwealth Games. Cardiff was awarded European City of Sport due to its role in hosting major international sporting events in 2009 and again in 2014. The Principality Stadium hosted 11 football matches as part of the 2012 Summer Olympics, including the games' opening event and the men's bronze medal match.
Caerdydd (the Welsh name of the city) derives from the Middle Welsh Caerdyf. The change from -dyf to -dydd shows the colloquial alteration of Welsh f [v] and dd [ð], and was perhaps also driven by folk etymology (dydd is Welsh for 'day' whereas *dyf has no obvious meaning). This sound change had probably first occurred in the Middle Ages; both forms were current in the Tudor period. Caerdyf has its origins in post-Roman Brythonic words meaning "the fort of the Taff". The fort probably refers to that established by the Romans. Caer is Welsh for fort and -dyf is in effect a form of Taf (Taff), the river which flows by Cardiff Castle, with the ⟨t⟩ showing consonant mutation to ⟨d⟩ and the vowel showing affection as a result of a (lost) genitive case ending.
The anglicised Cardiff is derived from Caerdyf, with the Welsh f [v] borrowed as ff /f/, as also happens in Taff (from Welsh Taf) and Llandaff (from Welsh Llandaf). The antiquarian William Camden (1551–1623) suggested that the name Cardiff may derive from *Caer-Didi ("the Fort of Didius"), a name supposedly given in honour of Aulus Didius Gallus, governor of a nearby province at the time when the Roman fort was established. Although some sources repeat this theory, it has been rejected on linguistic grounds by modern scholars such as Professor Gwynedd Pierce.
Becoming a Freemason in United Kingdom
Becoming a Freemason in Wales
Ceremonial county South Glamorgan
Historic County Glamorgan
Principal Area Cardiff
Local government Cardiff Council
City status 1905
Capital city 1955
• Cardiff Council Leader Huw Thomas
• Welsh Parliament
• UK Parliament
• Capital city & Principal area 140.3 km2 (54.2 sq mi)
• Urban 75.72 km2 (29.24 sq mi)
• Capital city & Principal area 366,903 (Ranked 1st) from Office for National Statistics
• Urban 479,000
• Metro 1,097,000 (Cardiff-South Wales Valleys)
Time zone UTC0 (GMT)
• Summer (DST) UTC+1 (BST)
Area code(s) 029
Vehicle area codes CA, CB, CC, CD, CE, CF, CG, CH, CJ, CK, CL, CM, CN, CO
Police Force South Wales
Fire Service South Wales
Ambulance Service Welsh
Primary Airport Cardiff Airport
84.7% White (80.3% White British)
2.9% Mixed Race
GDP US$36.0 billion
GDP per capita US$29,674