Masonic Temple (Lahore)

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Prince Albert Victor Lodge 2370ec[1]
Lahore masonic temple.jpg
Masonic Temple Lahore No. 2370
Location 90 Mall Road, Lahore, Pakistan
Coordinates 31°33′33″N 74°19′28.29″E / 31.55917°N 74.3245250°E / 31.55917; 74.3245250Coordinates: 31°33′33″N 74°19′28.29″E / 31.55917°N 74.3245250°E / 31.55917; 74.3245250
Founded 1860
Built 1914
Masonic Temple (Lahore) is located in Pakistan
Masonic Temple (Lahore)
Location of Prince Albert Victor Lodge 2370ec[1] in Pakistan

Lahore Masonic Temple in the Charing Cross neighborhood of Lahore, Pakistan, is the former home of Prince Albert Victor Lodge 2370ec, and Hope and Perseverance Lodge No. 782, two Masonic lodges warranted by the United Grand Lodge of England.

The building has not been used for masonic purposes since the lodges were disbanded in 1972, when then Prime Minister of Pakistan, Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto placed a ban on Freemasonry in Pakistan.[2]

Lodge of Hope and Perseverance No. 782[edit]

The first Masonic Temple of the Lodge of Hope and Perseverance was built in 1859 at Anarkali, Lahore.[3] Its site on Lodge Road is now occupied by Lady Maclagan Government High School.[4]

The second Masonic Temple was built in 1914, using the foundation stone from its predecessor,[1] on land that had once been a garden.[5] The new temple was designed by Basil M. Sullivan, Consulting Architect to the government of Punjab, and mirrored the Shah Din Building, across the street along the Queens Road. It was later renovated for use by the Punjab Chief Minister's Secretariat. Due to recent additions to the Shah Din building, the two buildings are no longer mirror images of each other.[6]

Rudyard Kipling[edit]

The author and poet Rudyard Kipling was made a mason in the Lodge of Hope and Perseverance in 1885, at the original lodge building, under a dispensation allowing him to be initiated before his 21st Birthday. He served as secretary of the Lodge following his initiation.[7] He remained a member of the lodge for three years, demitting in 1889.[8] He wrote of his time in the Lodge of Hope and Perseverance in "Something of Myself" and in a letter to the Times, describing "decorating the bare walls of the Masonic Hall with hangings after the prescription of King Solomon's Temple" and meeting members of many different religious faiths, including Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs and Jews.[9] Kipling also references the original 1859 building in the opening scene of his novel Kim, describing it as "the big blue and white Jadoo-Gher—the Magic House, as we named the Masonic Lodge." [10][11] One plot line in the book relates to a piece of paper in Kim's possession, a "clearance-certificate", which shows that his deceased father was a Mason. In 1914, long after Kipling had left India, the lodge demolished the building that Kipling described, and replaced it with the current one.

Current status[edit]

In 1972 Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, then Prime Minister of Pakistan, placed a ban on Freemasonry and many other foreign organizations present in the country.[2] The lodge was then disbanded and for a time the building was unused. It has been used as a multi-purpose Punjab government building.[12][13]

In the late 1980s the Heritage Foundation Pakistan and concerned citizens of Lahore started a project to renovate the heritage buildings on the Mall road, including this building.[14]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Nazir Ahmad Chaudhry (1998). Lahore: Glimpses of a Glorious Heritage. Sang-e-Meel Publications. pp. 202–207. ISBN 978-969-35-0944-1. 
  2. ^ a b "Masonic mystique " - Dawn.com
  3. ^ "Laying the Foundation Stone of a Masonic Hall at Anarkullee" - The Freemasons' quarterly (magazine and) review, Pg. 356, 5 Nov 1859
  4. ^ Majid Sheikh (21 September 2003). "Walking to Charing Cross". Dawn (Pakistan). Retrieved 10 September 2010. 
  5. ^ Majid Sheikh (21 September 2003). "Walking to Charing Cross". Dawn (Pakistan). Retrieved 31 August 2010. "a map of the Charing Cross area, drawn by the British in 1867, makes interesting reading. The area from the crossing, going eastwards, has nothing but gardens on the right. Where today stands the Masonic Hall has a beautiful ‘circular garden’" 
  6. ^ Naz, N.; Z. Ashraf (Jan 2008). "Transformation of Urban Open Spaces of Lahore: From Charing Cross to Faisal Square". Pakistan Journal of Engineering and Applied Sciences 2: 65–78. 
  7. ^ Kipling and Freemasonry---MWBro. Robert A. Gordon PGM - G.L. P.E.I.
  8. ^ Masonic biography of Joseph Rudyard Kipling, Grand Lodge BC&Y
  9. ^ H. Paul Jeffers (2005). Freemasons: A History and Exploration of the World's Oldest Secret Society. Citadel Press. pp. 192–193. ISBN 978-0-8065-2662-1. 
  10. ^ Rudyard Kipling (1922). Kim. Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, Page and Company. pp. 2ff. 
  11. ^ Rudyard Kipling (1998). Alan Sandison, ed. Kim. Oxford University Press. pp. 2, 291. ISBN 978-0-19-283513-0. "the Masonic Lodge: this is the lodge ('Hope and Perseverance no. 782 E.C.') to which Kipling was admitted in 1885...." 
  12. ^ "The office of this organization was set up at Free Mason Hall, which had been taken over from the Masonic Society. This building is now known as 90-Shahrah-e-Quaid-e-Azam and the offices of the Chief Minister are located therein. ..." 50 years of Lahore Arts Council, Alhamra by the Alhamra Council
  13. ^ "Evaluation of Seventh Five Year Plan, 1988-93" by the Pakistan Planning Council, Pg. 151
  14. ^ Lari, Y. (2003). Lahore - Illustrated City Guide. Karachi, Pakistan: Heritage Foundation Pakistan 2003

External links[edit]