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An epithet applied to certain Degrees which were invested with supreme power over inferior ones; as, Sovereign Prince of Rose Croix, which is the highest Degree of the French Rite and of some other Rites, and Sovereign Inspector General, which is the controlling Degree of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite. Some Degrees, originally Sovereign in the Rites in which they were first established, in being transferred to other Rites, have lost their sovereign character, but still improperly retain the name. Thus the Rose Croix Degree of the Scottish Rite, which is there only the Eighteenth, and subordinate to the Thirty-third of Supreme Council, still retains everywhere, except in the Southern Jurisdiction of the United States, the title of Sovereign Prince of Rose Croix. The expression Sovereign of Sovereigns was a title once used for the presiding officer of a Consistory (see Doctor Mackey's revised History of Freemasonry, page 1891) and a similar title was also applied to members of Supreme Councils, Sovereigns of Masonry, in the circular letter sent out by the Supreme Council at Charleston, December 4, 1802 (reprinted fully in above History, pages 1871-5).

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