Prestonian Lectures from Quatuor Coronati
The Prestonian Lecture is the only lecture given under the authority of the United Grand Lodge of England. William Preston (1742-1818), the foremost Masonic educator of his time, left a legacy to provide for an Annual Lectureship. Set out below is the preamble to the list of Prestonian Lectures which appears in each Grand Lodge of England Masonic Year Book.
During his lifetime William Preston developed an elaborate system of masonic instruction which was practised in association with the Lodge of Antiquity of which he was at one time Master. At his death in 1818, Preston bequeathed to Grand Lodge the sum of £300 for the perpetuation of his system of instruction… Lectures in accordance with this system were delivered from 1820 until 1862, when the Lectureship was permitted to lapse. In 1924 the Prestonian Lectureship was revived with a modification to the original Scheme, the lecturer now submitting a Masonic subject of his own selection, and with the exception of the war years, 1940-1946, regular appointments have been made annually since 1924 to the present day.
The selection procedure was changed in 2018. Under the new system Provincial Grand Masters, the Metropolitan Grand Master and the Secretary of Quatuor Coronati Lodge are asked for names of possible Prestonian lecturers in August each year. Those named are then asked to submit a synopsis of their proposed lecture in September, synopses being reviewed in November and the lecturer for the following year selected in May, announced in June and invested in December in the Quarterly Communications of Grand Lodge.
The lectureship lasts for the calendar year.
Members of Quatuor Coronati Lodge form the majority of Prestonian Lecturers. Their research receives recognition worldwide and a number undertake international lecture tours. Each Prestonian Lecturer is presented with a collarette jewel to wear on all Masonic occasions. The members of Quatuor Coronati who are or were Prestonian Lecturers can be accessed by clicking the links below.
Lectures from Quatuor Coronati Lodge members can be arranged by emailing Paul Calderwood at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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