One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A member of an international order established for mutual help and fellowship, which holds elaborate secret ceremonies.
The original freemasons were itinerant skilled stonemasons of the 14th century, who are said to have recognized fellow craftsmen by secret signs. Modern Freemasonry is usually traced to the formation of the Grand Lodge in London in 1717; members are typically professionals and businessmen
- ‘Its structure, organization, and code are the valuable trade secrets of the Freemasons, probably.’
- ‘Councillors have a right to be Freemasons but people should know about it.’
- ‘The Ancient and Accepted Order of Freemasons originated in London in the early 1700s and spread to colonial America.’
- ‘Opus Dei is frequently attacked for its alleged secrecy, and has often been described as a secret society akin to the Freemasons.’
- ‘The huge works are the membership registers of the 600 Freemason's lodges of Scotland, the ‘secret’ order reputed to wield legendary influence in the corridors of power.’
- ‘There is much more to the Freemasons than just funny handshakes.’
- ‘He consolidated this position by becoming a member of the Grand Lodge of Freemasons.’
- ‘The house dates back two hundred years and was built by the local Grand Master of the Freemasons.’
- ‘He was also a respected and long-serving member of his local Freemasons fraternity, an exclusively male society.’
- ‘The Freemasons would not volunteer a local member to discuss the new register, but they said they thought it was a human rights infringement.’
- ‘Some French prisoners, who were Freemasons, carved bone snuff boxes depicting a Masonic temple and the all-seeing eye.’
- ‘The process should require any political affiliations to be disclosed along with membership of organisations like the Freemasons.’
- ‘Besides these, it appears that only the Freemasons and the Buffaloes remain active in Belfast, although, in many cases, the other brotherhoods lasted well into the 1980s.’
- ‘Ask five different people for the origins of the Freemasons and you may get five different explanations.’
- ‘Of course, we're told that the Freemasons are no longer a secret brotherhood, but a brotherhood with secrets.’
- ‘The loot was later brought to the United States by the Freemasons, a secret society.’
- ‘But the Freemasons, who have traditionally refused publicly to reveal their membership of the organisation, believe that the new regulations may not stand up to scrutiny.’
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