Masonic heritage

Masonic heritage spans several centuries – primarily European and American history. Freemasonry is one of the oldest social and charitable organizations in the world.

Legacy of medieval stonemasons

Medieval Masons' Heritage Its roots can be traced back to the tradition of medieval masons, who were builders of churches and castles. Masons used Words and Signs acquired through the secrets of the Craft to prove their qualifications as builders or masons. They used Gloves and Aprons to protect themselves from the rough pieces of stone they worked with.

300 years since the first constitution

The official year of the birth of modern Freemasonry is considered to be 1717 in London. In 1723, Presbyterian minister James Anderson published the Constitutions of the Free Masons. However, the first lodges began to develop in Scotland over 100 years before these events.

Worldwide spread and impact

Global Expansion and Influence Freemasonry began to spread from the United Kingdom to North America, throughout Europe, and to the British and other colonies.

The 18th century witnessed the emergence and expansion of Freemasonry alongside the Enlightenment movement, originating from Scotland, England, and other countries. In the 18th century, Freemasons played a vital role as the Founding Fathers of the United States, including the establishment of the capital city of Washington, D.C., the Capitol, and the Declaration of Independence. In the 19th century, Freemasons played a significant role in the unification of Italy and civil revolutions throughout Europe, while in the 20th century, they contributed to the creation of European integration.

The development and acceptance of Freemasonry depend significantly on the level of respect for human liberties in individual societies. Both totalitarian ideologies suppressed Masonic freedoms, banning their continuity of operation.

Freemasonry in Croatia

Freemasonry in Croatia has been present in Croatia since the 18th century, within the framework of the Habsburg Monarchy. The first lodge was established in Glina, which was part of the Austrian Military Frontier. Under the influence of Austria, Freemasonry began to be revived in the 1990s after decades of totalitarian bans on activities from 1940 to 1990 in Yugoslavia.

Later , the Grand National Lodge of Croatia Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite was established on February 14, 2014, following its independence from the Grand Lodge of Italy.

Masonic legacy in books

Many books have already been published about our heritage at the European and wider level. Here are some examples of famous books.

The Genesis of Freemasonry

British historian David Harrison in his book The Genesis of Freemasonry describes the context of its development during the 18th century.

In 1723, Protestant church officials Reverend James Anderson and Reverend John Theophilus Desaguliers published the first edition of the Freemasons Constitution. Their deep knowledge of the Bible helped them rewrite the Masonic ritual.

Symbols, connections and values

Modern Freemasonry has roots in operational masonry guilds. Medieval Gothic churches and cathedrals were built by operational masons who used a Christianized version of Sacred Geometry, where the Cross symbolizes Jesus' crucifixion and resurrection. The triangle was used as a Geometric symbol representing the Trinity, which in the Masonic ritual is incidentally related to the number Three.

Masons used many symbols, such as the All-Seeing Eye, Kutnik and Compasses, skulls and bones, pyramids, Pentagrams, Acacia wood, etc. The compass symbolizes the life cycle, having a central point, while the capital Letter G represents God.

Both the Freemasons and the Rosicrucians were directed toward the Holy Edifice, the House of the Holy Spirit. The Rose Cross or Red Cross was an English symbol and was also used by Martin Luther. The rose symbolizes the secret of immortality, which has become a ritual in Rosicrucian societies.

In addition to Rose Croix, Freemasonry had to do with the Knights Templar, Kabalism, Hermetism, Alchemy, numerology, and esoteric search for ancient hidden knowledge and deeper meaning of the Symbol. Freemasons also expressed a strong interest in classical architecture and antiquity. They also promoted the New Science represented by Newton's natural philosophy.

The biblical Old Testament reveals many masonry rituals and symbols, details around solomon's temple as the ultimate Divine building that embodies God and Wisdom, and is the foundation for Masonic degrees such as the Royal Ark Mariner.

Also, the Resurrection of Christ is depicted in the ritual of the Knights Templar. The Brotherhood embraced the values of natural philosophy, charity, educational and moralistic attitudes, and religious tolerance. The Freemasons were God's masons who built a better world, in accordance with God's divine geometry and morality. Therefore, Freemasonry was a tool for understanding the work of God, also known as the Great Architect of the Universe. Freemasonry has evolved into a society important for opportunities for connection, education and business. The expansion of masonry lodges contributed to the Enlightenment in Europe.

Overcoming divisions

Many Freemasons supported the Wig government and hanover dynasty, which played an important role after the Glorious Revolution of 1688 when religious tolerance was encouraged. The lodges brought together supporters of parliamentarism and monarchism and bridged the political and religious divide from the civil war. In fact, both Whigs and Tories could socialize and coexist within the same society. For this reason, conversations about politics and religion were banned in lodges. In this way, Freemasonry provided opportunities for many gentlemen, members of elites and governments.

Newton and Bacon

Influenced by the Rosicrucian tradition, Sir Isaac Newton was deeply interested in the relationships between religion and science and explored God's messages in the Old and New Testaments. In the Bible, Newton sought order, design, and the hidden Wisdom of God, revealed through mathematical teaching. Newtonian mechanics was applied during the Industrial Revolution. Also, Sir Francis Bacon in his book "New Atlantis" combined biblical beliefs and classical idealism and mentioned that Solomon's House was a place of healing and knowledge.

Wren and St. Paul's Cathedral

Freemasons influenced the construction of St Paul's Cathedral, the Royal Society, and many other societies and clubs that established social networks in London cafes and inns, discussing the philosophy of Isaac Newton, John Locke, etc.

Under the supervision of the landmark Freemason, Sir Christopher Wren, the construction of St. Paul's Cathedral was seen as the new Temple of Solomon, the center of New London, which would be transformed into the New Jerusalem, a Protestant rival of Catholic Rome, comparing it to St. Peter's Church. Furthermore, St. Paul's Cathedral has become a symbol of God's Architectural excellence. Therefore, in the 1769 edition of Anderson's Constitutions, Wren is presented as modern Hiram, and St. Paul's Cathedral as the modern Temple of Solomon.


Many influential people who belonged to the Fraternity, such as Christopher Wren, Isaac Newton, Francis Bacon, John Webb, Erasmus King, John Senex, William Cowper, Edward Jenner, Brook Taylor, Martin Folkes, Richard Rawlinson, Elias Ashmole, Alexander Pope, John Parker, Edward Wolley, John Arbuthnot, William Boyd, Thomas Watts, Martin Clare, George Drummond, James Radcliff and Benjamin Franklin. Many people were associated with Freemasonry, including Puritans such as Oliver Cromwell and John Locke. In 1753, in Gentleman's Magazine, the English philosopher John Locke expressed his interest in the Brotherhood. Also, many people have expressed interest in Freemasonry, like the founder of Methodism, John Wesley. In addition, several French Protestants, i.e. Huguenotic refugees, including John Theophilus Desaguliers, Michael de La Roche, David Papillon and Charles Labelye, were involved in English Freemasonry and became supporters of the Whig government and the Hanover dynasty.

The Square and the Tower

In his book "The Square and the Tower, British historian Niall Ferguson presents essential facts regarding the significant influence of Freemasons on the development of social networks within the Enlightenment. In Chapter 19, "Networks of Enlightenment," Ferguson describes the development of networks among freethinking individuals and intellectuals, as well as various societies and clubs for the exchange of ideas. He cites Benjamin Franklin as a prime example of great influence. In Chapter 20, "Network of Revolution," Ferguson highlights Freemasonry as a crucial network in the American Revolution, starting with many Founding Fathers and signatories of the Declaration of Independence. He also describes how Scottish Presbyterian minister James Anderson became the author of the Constitution of Freemasonry, the Constitutions of the Free Masons.

The Craft

British historian John Dickey wrote in the book "The Craft that Freemasons, in public life, spread Enlightenment ideas of freedom of conscience and religious tolerance, Brotherly love, rationality, democracy, and equality before the law. Masonic lodges were part of the growing intellectual arena of many societies and clubs. Additionally, Freemasonry provided people of different backgrounds and faiths with the opportunity to develop skills for work in modern institutions; they learned how to be discreet, write speeches, interpret constitutional rules, advise, and judge character. Dickey, for example, mentions how John Theophilus Desaguliers, from a family of French Huguenots, introduced educational lectures to the lodge and helped establish charitable assistance. Other important figures mentioned include publisher Benjamin Franklin and Marquis de Lafayette, the author of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen and a hero of the French and American revolutions. Dickey describes the legacy of Washington and the Capitol Building. The author also mentions the All-Seeing Eye as one of the Masonic symbols, which is found at the top of the pyramid and imprinted on the US dollar, along with the Latin phrase "Novus Ordo Seclorum" (New Order of the Ages). The Founding Fathers saw the All-Seeing Eye as the Eye of Providence. Dickey states that the key to the success of Freemasonry was respectable and ambitious middle-class individuals who adhered to the universal principles of self-improvement. Instead of focusing on birth or status, virtues were important. Freemasonry presented itself to the world as the architecture of individuals with virtues, where candidates were asked if they were pure, leading a righteous life, serious, temperate, and industrious; if they had habits that would degrade morality, and if they cared for their families. Being a Mason was a credibility card for American businessmen, representing honest relationships and civic identity. Masonic fraternities provided a sense of stability and well-being and engaged in philanthropy and charitable assistance. Dickey also mentions the strong Masonic influence on the French Revolution and the unification of Italy, as well as the suppression of the Papal States. On the other hand, the author mentions systems that brutally repressed Freemasonry while spreading conspiracy theories.

The Freemasons in America

In The Freemasons in America , by Paul Jeffers, an overview of examples of Masons who influenced the creation of institutions in the American nation is given, including several federal states, especially Texas. It is mentioned how George Washington emphasized the importance of Masonic Brotherhood in promoting personal virtues and public prosperity, and how Benjamin Franklin saw Freemasonry as a testament of character and qualifications through a universal language as a passport.