Grand Lodge of Ireland

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The Grand Lodge of Ireland is the second oldest Grand Lodge of Freemasons in the world, and the oldest in continuous existence. Since no specific record of its foundation exists, 1725 is the year celebrated in Grand Lodge anniversaries, as the oldest reference to Grand Lodge of Ireland comes from the Dublin Weekly Journal of 26 June 1725. This describes a meeting of the Grand Lodge to install the new Grand Master, the 1st Earl of Rosse, on June 24.

The Grand Lodge has jurisdiction over 13 Provincial Grand Lodges covering all the Freemasons of the island of Ireland, and another 12 provinces worldwide.



There is considerable evidence of Masonic Lodges meeting in Ireland prior to the 18th century. The story of the "Lady Freemason", Elizabeth St Leger, dates to a time prior to the existence of the Grand Lodge, also there are references to Lodge meetings across Dublin in a speech given in Trinity College, Dublin as far back as 1688. The oldest artifact of Fraternal Masonry in Ireland, and one of the oldest masonic artifacts in the world is the Baal's Bridge Square, which dates from 1507. The brass square was recovered from Baals Bridge in Limerick during excavations and is inscribed with the phrase, "I will strive to live with love and care, upon the level and by the square."('s_Bridge_Square.htm)

During the 18th century individual Lodges met at inns, taverns and coffee houses, while the meetings of the Grand Lodge, generally took place in civic and guild buildings. During the early 19th century Grand Lodge began leasing buildings as semi-permanent Masonic facilities, for example, the Grand Lodge for a time held residence at No. 19, Dawson Street in Dublin which is the current home of the Royal Irish Academy. From Dawson Street, the Grand Lodge moved to Commercial Buildings on Dame Street until Grand Lodge along with most Metropolitan Lodges moved to a new, purpose built facility on Molesworth Street. [citation needed] In 1869 the current, purpose built headquarters of Irish Freemasonry, Freemasons' Hall on Molesworth Street, opened, housing dramatically decorated Lodge rooms, a library, museum, offices and dining areas.

Provincial Grand Lodges in Ireland

Provincial Grand Lodges Overseas

  • Bermuda
  • Far East
  • Ghana
  • India
  • Jamaica
  • South East Asia
  • Natal
  • New Zealand
  • Nigeria
  • South Africa Northern
  • Southern Cape Province
  • Sri Lanka
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

Metropolitan Area

  • The Metropolitan Area of Dublin contains 34 Masonic Lodges which are managed by a board under the Grand Lodge of Ireland.

[citation needed]

Grand Masters

1725 Richard Parsons, 1st Earl of Rosse
1731 James King, 4th Baron Kingston
1732 Nicholas Netterville, 5th Viscount Netterville
1733 Henry Barnewall, 4th Viscount Kingsland
1735 James King, 4th Baron Kingston
1736 Marcus Beresford, 1st Viscount Tyrone (later Earl of Tyrone)
1738 William Stewart, 3rd Viscount Mountjoy
1740 Arthur St Leger, 3rd Viscount Doneraile
1741 Charles Moore, 2nd Baron Moore of Tullamore
1743 Thomas Southwell, 2nd Baron Southwell
1744 John Allen, 3rd Viscount Allen
1747 Sir Marmaduke Wyvill, 6th Bt
1749 Robert King, 1st Baron Kingsborough
1751 Lord George Sackville (later Viscount Sackville)
1753 Hon. Thomas George Southwell
1757 Brinsley Butler, Lord Newtown-Butler
1758 Charles Moore, 6th Earl of Drogheda
1760 Charles Moore, 1st Earl of Charleville
1761 Sir Edward King, 5th Bt
1763 Thomas Nugent, 6th Earl of Westmeath
1767 Ford Lambart, 5th Earl of Cavan
1769 Edward King, 1st Earl of Kingston
1770 William FitzGerald, Marquess of Kildare
1772 Randal MacDonnell, Viscount Dunluce
1774 George Rochfort, 2nd Earl of Belvedere
1776 Garret Wesley, 1st Earl of Mornington
1777 William FitzGerald, 2nd Duke of Leinster
1778 Randal MacDonnell, 6th Earl of Antrim
1782 Richard Wellesley, 2nd Earl of Mornington
1783 Robert Deane, 1st Baron Muskerry
1785 Arthur Hill, Viscount Kilwarlin
1787 Francis Annesley, 2nd Viscount Glerawley (later Earl of Annesley)
1789 Richard Hely-Hutchinson, 2nd Baron Donoughmore
1813 Augustus FitzGerald, 3rd Duke of Leinster
1874 James Hamilton, 1st Duke of Abercorn
1886 James Hamilton, 2nd Duke of Abercorn
1913 Richard Hely-Hutchinson, 6th Earl of Donoughmore
1948 Raymond Frederick Brooke
1964 John Hely-Hutchinson, 7th Earl of Donoughmore
1981 Dermot Chichester, 7th Marquess of Donegall
1992 Darwin Herbert Templeton
2001 Eric Noel Waller
2006 George Dunlop

See also


  • Waite, Arthur Edward (2007). A New Encyclopedia of Freemasonry. Cosimo, Inc., 400. 
Part of this article consists of modified text from Wikipedia, and the article is therefore licensed under GFDL.
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