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FORM

In Freemasonry, an official act is said to be done, according to the rank of the person who does it, either in ample form, in due form, or simply in form. Thus, when the Grand Lodge is opened by the Grand Master in person, it is said to be opened in ample form; when by the Deputy Grand Master, it is said to be in due form; when by any other qualified officer, it is said to be in form. The legality of the act is the same whether it be done in form or in ample form; and the expression refers only to the dignity of the officer by whom the act is performed The terms Ample and Due Form appear to have been introduced by Anderson in the 1738 edition of the Constitutions (page 110).

- Source: Mackey's Encyclopedia of Freemasonry


FORM: of the Lodge

We speak of the "form of the Lodge," "due form," etc. The word is derived from the Latin forma, which meant the shape, or figure, or frame of anything; also it was used of a bench, or seat, whence the old custom of calling school benches "forms." It is the root of formal, formation, informal, and scores of other English words equally familiar. The "form of the Lodge" is its symbolical shape; a ceremony is in "due form" if it have the officially required character or framework of words and actions.

- Source: 100 Words in Masonry


FORM OF THE LODGE

The form of a Freemason's Lodge is said to be an oblong square, having its greatest length from east to west, and its greatest breadth from north to south. This oblong form of the Lodge, has, as Brother Mackey thought, a symbolic illusion that has not been adverted to by any other writer.If, on a map of the world, we draw lines which shall circumscribe just that portion which was known and inhabited at the time of the building of Solomon's Temple, these lines, running a short distance north and south of the Mediterranean Sea, and extending from Spain to Asia Minor, will form an oblong square, whose greatest length will be from east to west, and whose greatest breadth will be from north to south, as is shown in the annexed diagram.

There is a peculiar fitness in this theory, which is really only making the Masonic Lodge a symbol of the world. It must be remembered that, at the era of the Temple, the earth was supposed to have the form of a parallelogram, or oblong square. Such a figure inscribed upon a map of the world, and including only that part of it which was known in the days of Solomon, would present just such a square, embracing the Mediterranean Sea and the countries lying immediately on its northern, southern, and eastern borders. Beyond, far in the north, would be Cimmerian deserts as a place of darkness, while the pillars of Hercules in the west, on each side of the Straits of Gades now Gibraltar might appropriately be referred to the two pillars that stood at the porch of the Temple. Thus the world itself would be the true Freemason's Lodge, in which he was to live and labor. Again: the solid contents of the earth below, "from the surface to the centre," and the profound expanse above, "from the earth to the highest heavens," would give to this parallelogram definition which says that "the form of the Lodge ought to be a double cube, as an expressive emblem of the powers of light and darkness in the creation."

- Source: Mackey's Encyclopedia of Freemasonry


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