The Origins of the Scottish Rite

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The Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite is a Masonic rite derived from Scottish system practiced in France, mainly in Paris and Bordeaux lodges, mid-eighteenth century.

Beyond the mythological origins surrounding the entire Freemasonry, which have more to do with symbolism than historical, a great controversy between Masons of the world, about the title and the true origin of this Rite.

The Scottish Rite was not born in Scotland, in 1846  entered the country, and their seniority dates from 1786, or if accepted as genuine calls Constitutions of Frederick II, would have its origin in 1762.

Emulating the split that occurred in 1739 in the Grand Lodge of London in 1786 the Grand Orient of France made a serious review of the high degrees, reducing the number of four.

Just then supporters of the Scottish Rite hierarchy wanted to raise its 33 degrees out and accused the Grand Orient of wanting denature and replace the ancient mysteries and ceremonies, then posing as the new change detractors and defenders of the previous systems.

As had happened in England called themselves “old”, calling for “modern” supporters of renewal.

Documents admitted and authorized by the Masons who follow this ritual, state that its origin came after the First Crusade, simultaneously in Scotland, France and Prussia, but for unknown reasons fell into disuse from about 1648.

Such an assertion has never been demonstrated by any authentic document. Some documents likely to be reliable, ensuring that  Templar Freemasonry entered to France in 1727, and in 1744 its compiler, Baron Ramsay, established in Bordeaux the first Lodge of Perfection.

According to accounts not recognized by Masonic historians as Ragon, Joaust, Clavel, Laurens, Findel, Folger and Marconay Kloss, the entire system with its 33 ° degree, rests on the statutes and regulations written in Bordeaux in 1762, derived from a document issued by the “Princes of the Royal secret” in 1759, and attributed to Frederick II.

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Twenty years later, on May 25, 1782, would have been confirmed the Constitutions of Bordeaux, in a time when the Scottish Rite did not contain more than 25 degrees and was threatened by the recent discord born in Germany.

Seeing that the rite was heading to sunset, it was decided in 1786 to invest all the powers and prerogatives to a Council of Sovereign Grand Inspectors General, subject to Constitution and Bylaws, to direct the destinies of the Order thereafter.

Just then the hierarchy of grades raising the number to 33 ° expanded, and trained with all the brothers of that degree, a chapter called Sovereign Supreme Council of the 33rd Degree.

This article was written by Psalm Triginta

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