The intertwining of Rosicrucianism and Freemasonry traces back to the dawn of time. The earliest documented evidence of this connection is found in Henry Adamson’s ‘The Muses Threnodie,’ published in Edinburgh in 1638.
FOR WHAT WE PRESAGE IS NOT GROSS
FOR WE BE BRETHREN OF THE ROSIE CROSS;
WE HAVE THE MASON WORD AND SECOND SIGHT,
THINGS FOR TO COME WE CAN FORETELL ARIGHT.
Many Masonic historians propose that modern Speculative Freemasonry is deeply indebted to the Rosicrucian movement. Notably, the first recorded speculative Freemasons in England, Sir Robert Moray and Elias Ashmole, were either Rosicrucians themselves or had a profound interest in Rosicrucian philosophy and ideals. These ideals likely inspired the establishment of The Royal Society.
The Societas Rosicruciana in Anglia (S.R.I.A.) was established in 1867 by Freemason Robert Wentworth Little and six other brethren, following the discovery of specific manuscripts in the Grand Lodge archives. The Order has since been home to many distinguished and scholarly Masons.
The S.R.I.A. has served as a sanctuary for Masons seeking intellectual and spiritual enrichment since its inception. The requirement for S.R.I.A. membership to be a Master Mason is a legacy from the Society’s founders. This requirement serves as an endorsement of the candidate’s character, familiarity with ceremonial work, and commitment to the obligations of fidelity. In other words, having attained the rank of a Master Mason in a duly warranted lodge, the candidate has proven himself to be a person of integrity and discretion, eager to gain further knowledge of the surrounding mysteries.
The Masonic qualification is thus designed to ensure that its members uphold the principles of fidelity and privacy in their conduct.