To erect a Lodge is the authorized and time-honored formula to denote the foundation of a new Lodge of Freemasons. It is so employed in the earliest Lodge Charters, or Warrants, as they are styled nowadays, ever issued by any Grand Lodge. The very first of them opens as follows: whereas our Trusted and Well-Beloved Brothers have besought us that we would be pleased to Erect a Lodge off tree Masons, etc., etc.
This is in the Warrant of Lodge No. 1, Grand Lodge of Ireland, February 1, 1731-2. Thus sanctioned by authority, and approved by usage, the phrase held the field among English- speaking Freemasons at home and abroad during the half century that preceded the Union of 1813, and still remains a constitutional formula among Grand Lodges that derive their powers from the Grand Lodge of Ireland, or from its step-daughter, the Grand Lodge of the Ancient. In view of such unfamiliarity with the documents that embody the history of our organization, it is well to bear in mind that in 1748 there were no Lodge Charters in existence, save those issued under the seal of the Grand Lodge of Ireland. Several years had to elapse before the Irish practice, now so universal, was followed by the Grand Lodge of England.
These comments were made by Brother W. J. Chetwode Crawley, 1901 (Transactions, Quatuor Coronati Lodge, volume xiv, page 15).
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