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Saint Paul's Church
As Saint Paul's, the Cathedral Church of London, was rebuilt by Sir Christopher Wren--who is called (in the Book of Constitutions, 1738, page 107) the Grand Master of Freemasons-- and some writers have advanced the theory that Freemasonry took its origin at the construction of that edifice. In the Fourth Degree of Fessler's Rite--which is occupied in the critical examination of the various theories on the origin of Freemasonry-- among the seven sources that are considered, the building of Saint Paul's Church is one. Nicolai does not positively assert the theory; but he thinks it not an improbable one, and believes that a new system of symbols was at that time invented. It is said that there was, before the revival in 1717, an old Lodge of Saint Paul's; and it is reasonable to suppose that the Operative Masons engaged upon the building were united with the architects and men of other professions in the formation of a Lsdge, under the regulation which no longer restricted the Institution to Operative Masonry. But there is no authentic historical evidence that Freemasonry first took its rise at the building of Saint Paul's Church.
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