I have to read ‘The Da Vinci Code’ by Dan Brown again! After visiting The Library and Museum of Freemasonry in Freemason’s Hall at Great Queen Street I feel an urge to read the novel because now I have seen all the symbols and heard a lot about the freemasons – so I want to combine it with a little entertainment.
I went on a tour together with a friend. Her husbond is a freemason and she knows a lot about freemasonry. The organisation means a lot to him and even though I all ways thought of it as a bit nutty his engagement made me interested. So we went to the museum and I was not disappointed.
Every day the museum has free guided tours when the Grand Temple is not in use. We arrived at 2 pm and followed the guide around the building. So interesting and beautiful in a masculine, old fashioned kind of way. Even though I was impressed by the Grand Temple Hall I liked the museum even better.
They give you an insight in the freemasons world and their history. The traditions and values. The freemasons goes back to the middle age – free masons – where skilled workers, carpenters and masons traveled around the world, especially Europe, and build cathedrals. Those men needed places to meet where they could plan buildings, teach the young and unite them selves to get a better payment. Their lodges developed through history – so did their rituals, ceremonies and ranking system.
In 1717 the first Grand Lodge was founded in England and well the rest is history and you can run through it all on the museum. The collection explores the different ranks, offices and branches. It explains the symbolism, the charity, dining habits and a lot more. You will also see a masonic apron worn by Winston Churchill, even though he wasn’t that into it. Actually he resigned. Other famous freemasons: Mozart, Benjamin Franklin, Goethe, Clark Gable and Duke Ellington.
Freemasons’ Hall has been the centre of English freemasonry for 230 years. It is the headquarters of the United Grand Lodge of England, the oldest Grand Lodge in the world, and also the meeting place for over 1000 Masonic lodges. The building, which is listed Grade II*, was completed in 1933. The architects were H V Ashley and F Winton Newman. The interior of the building is richly decorated.
Source: The Library and Museum of Freemasonry