Few subjects in Masonic Jurisprudence generate more interest and debate than the Landmarks of Freemasonry. Every new Brother is charged to protect and preserve them, but there is much conflicting information about what the Landmarks of Masonry actually are. Considering that the proper observation of the Landmarks is a primary factor in the decision of whether a Grand Lodge is recognized or not and the preservation of them one of the most important considerations in making any Masonic policy, it is important that the Landmarks of the order be well understood.
The Mark is a ceremony or degree [sometimes called the ‘friendly’ degree], conferrable today only to Master Masons and forms part of a hierarchical organization. In Craft Masonry it was quite a late innovation making its appearance during the mid-1700s. However we do know that Operative Masons, without any kind of ceremony, were taking marks 150 years before the Mark came into use as part of that particular ceremony.
The foundation stone of the Freemasons Hall in Melbourne was laid by him in March 1885, the finished building being consecrated by him to Masonic purposes in March 1887. In 1889 he became the very first Most Worshipful Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of Victoria, an amalgamation of the three bodies that had operated at that time under their own constitutions. In 1885 he had largely financed the building of the Freemasons’ Hall at 25 Collins Street.
The Jewel can be worn by any member of UGLE who is a member between the 24 June 2016 and 31 December 2017. It can only be worn by Master Masons and above. Anyone initiated between those dates can purchase the Tercentenary Jewel but will not be eligible to wear it until they have been raised. The Jewel can be worn by Master Masons, Masters and Past Masters and Grand Officers.