You are here: Home > The Mark Degree > Description
The Degree of Mark Master Mason is open to all Master Masons. The ceremony, in which he is ‘advanced’, can be said to comprise two degrees: the first part in which he is acknowledged as a Mark Man and then the second where he becomes a Mark Master Mason.
The Mark referred to in its title takes its name from the Mark or Symbol with which the Stonemason identified his work and can still be found in many Cathedrals and important buildings.
The Mark Ritual is structured on a verse from Psalm 11. “The stone which the builders rejected has become the head of the corner”. It explores the building of King Solomon’s Temple and the craftsmen involved in the work. The lessons of the Mark Degree are presented in a ceremony that is both lively and enjoyable and requires active participation by at least nine Officers. It is full of action and surprises. Chronologically the Degrees follows the Second Degree in Craft Masonry.
The ordinary members’ regalia comprises an apron and breast jewel. The apron is of white kid with a triangular flap bordered with a two-inch ribbon of light blue with crimson edges. It has rosettes replaced with silver levels after the Mark Mason advances into the Chair of his Mark Mason Lodge. The jewel of the Order is a key stone appended to a ribbon, which matches the apron and bears a mallet & chisel which are the tools of the Order. The key stone, which bears certain characters, forms an integral part of the ceremony.
The Order, of which HRH Prince Michael of Kent is Grand Master, is administered from Mark Masons’ Hall in St James’s, London. Mark Grand Lodge was form in 1856 and earliest records show that the degree was working as early as 1769, or earlier. In the Order is partitioned into 41 Provinces in England and Wales. In addition there are 24 Districts abroad covering Europe, India, South America, the West Indies, Africa and the Far East. There are also three groups under a Grand Inspector in the Bahamas & Turks, the Isle of Man and Ghana and 25 unattached Lodges in many parts of the world. In all there are over 1500 Lodges in the English Constitution.
Leicestershire and Rutland, incorporating Northamptonshire and Derbyshire, was constituted as a Province in 1858, making them the third oldest Province in England and Wales. The other two counties became independent in 1894. Two Lodges in this Province were consecrated in 1858 and there is also one Lodge with Time Immemorial status.
In total there are now 16 Lodges which is led by a Provincial Grand Master and his Deputy who are supported by a Provincial team of a Treasurer, Secretary and Director of Ceremonies.