Meet The Author – Robert Freke Gould

Robert Freke Gould (1836-1915) was a British Freemason and Masonic historian who made significant contributions to the study of Freemasonry. He was born on August 10, 1836, in Cork, Ireland, to a family of landed gentry.

Gould was educated at Trinity College, Dublin, where he earned a degree in law. He went on to practice law in London, but his real passion was Freemasonry.

As you will see from the books he wrote, he devoted much of his time to studying its history and traditions.

Gould was initiated into Freemasonry in 1863 in the Lodge of Antiquity, No. 2, one of the oldest Masonic lodges in England.

He quickly became an active member of the Masonic community, serving in various offices and eventually rising to the rank of Past Grand Deacon.

Gould’s extensive knowledge of Masonic history and ritual made him a sought-after lecturer and writer.

In 1882, he published his magnum opus, “The History of Freemasonry: Its Antiquities, Symbols, Constitutions, Customs, Etc.,” which became a seminal work on the subject and is still widely read today.

In addition to his work as a Masonic historian, Gould was also a prolific writer of Masonic ritual and lectures.

He published several books on the subject, including “The Masonic Legends and Traditions of the Temple” and “The Arcana of Freemasonry.”

Gould was also active in Masonic organizations outside of England. He served as a Deputy Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Scotland and was a member of several Masonic bodies in the United States.

Robert Freke Gould died on March 26, 1915, in London. His contributions to the study of Freemasonry continue to be highly regarded and influential, and his books remain an important resource for Masonic scholars and historians.

Quatuor Coronati Lodge

Robert Freke Gould was closely involved with the Quatuor Coronati Lodge, which is a Masonic research lodge based in London, England.

The lodge was founded in 1884 by a group of Masonic scholars who were interested in studying the history and traditions of Freemasonry.

Gould was one of the founding members of the Quatuor Coronati Lodge, and he remained an active member throughout his life.

In fact, he is considered one of the most important figures in the lodge’s history, and his contributions to its work were invaluable.

The Quatuor Coronati Lodge is known for its meticulous research and scholarship, and Gould was instrumental in establishing this tradition.

It was during his membership of the lodge, that he became a prolific writer and researcher, and he brought a rigorous approach to his work that set a high standard for the lodge and its members.

Gould’s contributions to the Quatuor Coronati Lodge were many. He delivered several lectures to the lodge, many of which were later published in its transactions.

He also served as the lodge’s secretary from 1885 to 1905, during which time he oversaw the publication of its transactions and helped to establish its reputation as a leading Masonic research organization.

Gould was also responsible for the design of the lodge’s seal, which features the motto “Quatuor Coronati” (Four Crowned Ones) and a depiction of the four martyred stonemasons who are the lodge’s namesakes.

The Quatuor Coronati Lodge continues to be an important force in the world of Masonic scholarship, and its influence can be felt in the work of many Masonic scholars today.

Robert Freke Gould played a key role in establishing this legacy, and his contributions to the lodge’s work continue to be remembered and celebrated.



Robert Freke Gould
IMAGE LINKED:  wikimedia Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)


(includes, notable reprints)

Gould, R. F. (1882). The History of Freemasonry: Its Antiquities, Symbols, Constitutions, Customs, Etc. London: Caxton Publishing Company.

Gould, R. F. (1885). The Concise History of Freemasonry. London: Hazell, Watson, and Viney, Ltd.

Gould, R. F. (1893). The Masonic Legends and Traditions of the Temple. London: Kegan Paul, Trench & Co.

Gould, R. F. (1900). The Four Old Lodges: Founders of Modern Freemasonry, and Their Descendants. London: George Kenning.

Gould, R. F. (1915). The History of Freemasonry: Its Antiquities, Symbols, Constitutions, Customs, Etc. (Revised and Enlarged). London: Caxton Publishing Company.

Gould, R. F. (1923). The Arcana of Freemasonry. London: William Rider & Son.

Gould, R. F. (1925). The Meaning of Masonry. London: William Rider & Son.

Gould, R. F. (1936). A Concise History of Freemasonry. London: Gale & Polden.

Gould, R. F. (1946). History of Freemasonry. New York: Gramercy Publishing Company.

Gould, R. F. (1978). The Constitutions of the Free-Masons: Containing the History, Charges, Regulations, Etc. of That Most Ancient and Right Worshipful Fraternity. Whitefish, MT: Kessinger Publishing.

These works by Robert Freke Gould are highly regarded by Masonic scholars and are considered seminal works on the history and traditions of Freemasonry. Gould was an accomplished Masonic historian an

Sources: wikipeida, Quatuor Coronati, public domain masonic resources

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