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the Royal Archives at Windsor is a small manuscript book of prayers which formerly belonged to His Royal Highness. If he used it, and internal evidence goes to show that he did, it proves that he was a sincere and contrite believer in the doctrine of the Holy Trinity. His membership of Christian Orders whose obligations required such a belief confirms this. His religious opinions were, however. tolerant and, so far as Craft Masonry was concerned. 'it was part of his masonic creed that, provided a man believe in the existence of the GAOTU and in futurity, and extends that belief likewise to a system of rewards and punishments hereafter, such a person is fully competent to be received as a brother'. 1 Masonically, he was a universalist.

The Duke of Sussex was initiated, 1798, in the Lodge Victorious Truth, Berlin, a constituent of the Royal York of Friendship, the Grand Lodge of Prussia, which then only accepted Christians. He passed through the several offices to the chair. On his return to England he was given the customary rank of Past GM, subsequently becoming DGM of the 'Moderns', or Prince of Wales's, as they were then called. The Duke succeeded his brother, the Prince Regent, as Grand Master, 12 May 1813. He also joined, and for many years presided over, several other lodges, and he had a special fondness for the Pilgrim Lodge, No 238, which, like his Mother Lodge, worked its own ritual in the German language. 2 'When I first determined,' he said, 'to link myself with this noble Institution, it was a matter of very serious consideration with me; and I can assure the Brethren that it was at a period when, at least, I had the power of well considering the matter, for it was not in the boyish days of my youth, but at the more mature age of 25 or 26 years. I did not take it up as a light and trivial matter, but as a grave and serious concern of my life.'3

The immediate purpose of HRH becoming Grand Master of the 'Moderns' was to bring about the long-desired Union of the two Fraternities in England, upon which 'his whole heart was bent'. For the same purpose his elder brother, the Duke of Kent, became Grand Master of the Atholl Masons, or 'Ancients', and expressed similar sentiments .4 As a step towards the Union, the Lodge of Promulgation (1809-11) was established to restore the Ancient Landmarks, to help 'the Lodges of the Moderns fall into line with those of the Antients'. 5 The Duke of Sussex, as RWM of the Lodge of Antiquity, No 1, was a member and made a useful contribution to the deliberations 'by a luminous exposition of the Practices adhered to by our Masonic Brethren at Berlin .6 The ceremonies agreed upon, including that of a Board of Installed Masters, almost non-existent among the Moderns, were rehearsed before the Duke, and arrangements made for their promulgation. The way was thus cleared for the Union, which was celebrated on 27 December 1813, the Duke of Sussex, on the proposition of the Duke of Kent, becoming MW Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of the United Grand Lodge of England. 'This,' he said, 'is the happiest event of my life'.7 Though

  1. Lodge of Research. Leicester. No 2429. Transactions. 1919-20, p 97
  2. 2. A Short History of the Pilgrim Lodge, 238, F Bernhart, AQC, lxvi,
  3. 3. Freemason's Quarterly Rev iew 1839. p 505
  4. Gould, History of Freemasonry ed Poole. in, p 81: AQC, lxviii. p 49.
  5. 5. AQC. xxiii, p 215.
  6. Lodge of Promulgation, Minutes. 29 December 1809 AQC- xxiii p 38.
  7. History of the Roy al Alpha Lodge. 'so 16, Col Shadwell H. Clerke. p 5