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Four Old Lodges

Of the four old Lodges which constituted the Grand Lodge of England, on Saint John the Baptist's day, 1717, the Lodge of Antiquity, No. 2, London, was the first. The Lodge meets by "Time Immemorial Constitution," having no Warrant and, until the "Union," was first on the roll; a decision, however, by ballot. lost it its numerical priority. As Lodges were known by the house in which they met, Antiquity Lodge was designated The West India and American. The Royal Somerset House and Inverness, No. 4, London, is the junior of the four Lodges which constituted the Grand Lodge. At that time it met at the Rummer and Grapes Tavern, Westminster, and subsequently at the Horn, which latter gave the Lodge a name for many years. This Lodge now represents three united Lodges, the names of two of which are to be found in its present designation. Of the four original Lodges, two only have been on the roll from 1740 as of "Time Immemorial Constitution." The original No. 2 ceased working about 1736 and was erased in 1740, and No. 3 accepted a "New Constitution," now No. 12, and is known as Fortitude and Cumberland. The four original Lodges, after the issue of the Regulations of 1723, simply enjoyed the advantage of being ahead of all the Warrant Lodges, the privilege of assembling by "Time Immemorial Constitution," and the honor of having established the first Grand Lodge in the universe (see Freemasonry, Early British).

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