Grand Lodge of Scotland
The Grand Lodge of Antient, Free and Accepted Masons of Scotland was founded in 1736 – although only a third of all lodges were represented at the foundation meeting of the Grand Lodge
The oldest records held within the Grand Lodge are meeting minutes of the Lodge of Edinburgh (Mary's Chapel) which date from 1599.
Scottish Freemasonry has a distinct and unique character. The connection between the craft of Stone-masonry and modern Freemasonry can be readily established in Scotland. This direct connection can be traced from the oldest Masonic written records in the world and which are the property of the Grand Lodge.
Lodges under the Scottish Constitution are thus sovereign bodies in their own right, with a considerable degree of control of their own affairs. Many Lodges pre-existed Grand Lodge, and were permitted to retain their own procedures, regalia, and distinctive rituals.
Having established the principle of independence to the old Lodges, it was impossible to deny Lodges founded after 1736 the same level of privilege. Of course the rituals contain the principal points of each degree, but the scope for elaboration is considerable, with numerous interesting additions. Since Scottish Lodges have the right to choose the colours of the Lodge regalia, meetings are very colourful – especially if visitors from other Lodges are present.
The Grand Lodge of Scotland has 32 Provincial Grand Lodges in Scotland itself, and 25 District Grand Lodges overseas.
In 1953, the Grand Lodge of Scotland chartered the Grand Lodge of the State of Israel.