The Ancient & Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry traces its origins to early 18th century France. The term “Scottish” is believed to come from those Scottish Masons who fled to France during and following the Jacobite Rebellion. Many of the earliest degrees in the Rite were believed to have come from Scotland.
The organization left France and came to America were it was perfected and grew to its current form in Charleston, South Carolina in 1801.
The Scottish Rite is often referred to as the University of Freemasonry. The twenty-nine degrees of this Rite amplify those of the Blue Lodge by offering a broader and deeper geographic, historical, philosophical and spiritual connotation drawn from the greatest teachings of antiquity.
The Scottish Rite in the U.S. is divided into two jurisdictions. The Supreme Council of the Ancient & Accepted Scottish Rite for the Southern Masonic Jurisdiction is located in Washington, D.C., at the House of the Temple, one of the most impressive Masonic structures in the world. It is sovereign over all Scottish Rites in the 35 states south of the Ohio and west of the Mississippi Rivers. The other 15 states are part of the Northern Masonic Jurisdiction headquartered in Lexington, Massachusetts.
Each state is referred to as an Orient. Individual Scottish Rites, known as Valleys, are located in cities across the state. The first three degrees of the Scottish Rite are conferred in the Symbolic, or Blue Lodge. The other degrees are organized as follows:
Lodge of Perfection
4th -Secret Master; 5th – Perfect Master; 6th – Confidential Secretary; 7th – Provost & Judge; 8th – Intendant of the Building; 9th – Elu of the Nine; 10th – Elu of the Fifteen; 11th – Elu of the Twelve; 12th – Master Architect; 13th – Royal Arch of Solomon; 14th – Perfect Elu
Chapter of Rose Croix
15th – Knight of the East; 16th – Prince of Jerusalem; 17th – Knight of the East & West; 18th – Knight Rose Croix
Council of Kadosh
19th – Grand Pontiff; 20th – Master of the Symbolic Lodge; 21st – Noachite or Prussian Knight; 22nd – Knight of the Royal Axe; 23rd – Chief of the Tabernacle; 24th – Prince of the Tabernacle; 25th – Knight of the Brazen Serpent; 26th – Prince of Mercy; 27th – Knight Commander of the Temple; 28th – Knight of the Sun; 29th – Knight of St. Andrew; 30th – Knight of Kadosh Consistory
31st – Inspector Inquisitor; 32nd – Master of the Royal Secret
The 33rd Degree is reserved for those members who have been recognized for outstanding service to Masonry and their community.