Societas Rosicruciana in Anglia
society of Rosicrucians was given its present form by Robert Wentworth Little in
1865, who with other zealous masons founded the order following the reputed
discovery of certain manuscripts in the archives of Grand Lodge. The society was
based upon symbolism and traditions of a much earlier Society known as the
Fraternity of the Rose and Cross, which in turn claimed its origin from an
immortal character, real or mythical, known as Christian Rosenkreutz and
familiarly designated by the initials CRC. This society subsequently gave rise
to other bodies in Scotland and the USA, and in building upon the ancient order
the modern societies have not departed from precedent, but have continued the
eternal search for knowledge. This is evinced by the encouragement given for
members to produce papers and deliver lectures as a vital part of College work.
The order is being governed by the Grand College in England.
In various countries there are local chapters. In total there are about fifty
chapters worldwide under this order. In the Netherlands there are two Colleges,
The Netherlands College (founded in 1992) and Hermes College (founded in 1997). The number of members is
not clear, but does not exceed a couple of dozen.
This order or the Dutch College is actually not connected to the Grand
Orient of the Netherlands. It is not recognized as an appendant order and did
not need approval of the Grand Orient. The SRIA is however only open to Master
Masons who proclaim a belief in the christian Tri-Unity.
Besides the Societas Rosicruciana in Anglia, there is a Grand Council in
Schotland, that governs the Societats Rosicruciana in Scotia, with five Colleges
and approximately 300 members and a Grand Council in the United States: Societas
Rosicruciana in Civitatibus Foederatis. Under this Society work 32 Colleges.
The Order has nine degrees. The first four are grouped in the
The ‘Second Order’
comprises of the Vth—VIIth grades, variously known as the Adept Grades
which are conferred in a College of Adepts by a Chief Adept or his duly
appointed deputy. Selection for advancement in the Adept grades is made by
the Supreme Magus or Chief Adept only.
Zelator: This is the first grade of the Society,
where the aspirant is received in a most impressive and colorful ceremony
and where he is exhorted to commence his quest for true wisdom. All business
of the College is transacted in this grade.
Theoricus: As implied by the title, the ritual of
admission is concerned with the theoretical aspects of divinity in all its
forms. This grade embodies an erudite lecture on color.
Practicus: The study and ritual of this grade has
special reference to the spiritual facet of the ancient art of alchemy.
Here the aspirant is encouraged to expand his knowledge by careful study of
the various philosophical and sacred writings of the World religions. An
extensive lecture of superb calibre is embodied within this grade.
Minor: Admission to this grade is not permissible until a minimum period of
four years has been served in the Society. This is a pre-requisite grade for
advancement to the office of Ancient within a College.
Adeptus Major: The sixth grade is one with great significance and demands a
high degree of contemplation in preparation for advancement to the seventh
grade of ...
Exemptus: This, the final grade of the ‘Second Order’, is pre-requisite
for installation into the chair of a College. The teachings embodied are of
a divine and ethereal nature, designed to elevate the mind in preparation
for complete initiation.
The Third Order: The two
grades are conferred by the Supreme Magus, or by special dispensation by another
Selection for these grades
is made by the Supreme Magus only, the third being the ruling Order of the
The Electoral College is
composed of all members of the Third Order who are subscribing members of a
College of the Society and is responsible for the election of a new Supreme
Magus when that Office falls vacant.
Magister: This grade is conferred upon the Officers of the High Council
designated in the Ordinances of the Society and may be conferred upon other
members of the High Council. 8°
Magister (Honoris Causa) may be conferred upon other Fratres who show
outstanding service to the Society. A Magister High Councillor on ceasing to
be a member of the High Council reverts to the rank of Magister (Honoris
Magus: This rank is only held by the Supreme Magus, the Senior Substitute
Magus and the Junior Substitute Magus. The rank of Magus (Honoris Causa) 9°
may be conferred by the Supreme Magus on a Frater who has shown outstanding
devotion to the aims of the Society and there are but few Fraters who attain
From the Fifth degree members can be invited to join the Order of Eri.
Opening- and closingceremonies of
The Degrees Zelator, Theoricus
and Practicus of the SRIA
The degrees Zelator, Theoricus,
Practicus and Philosophus
of the American order.
Brochure Entrance to the Mystic Circle
On the CD-Rom Masonic Rosicrucian Library we
have published more rituals and other texts of this order.