ISSUE 10, July 2004
John Pine: A sociable craftsman
Jumping for Joy: Skydiving for charity
Quarterly Communication: Speeches of: the Grand Master, the Pro Grand Master and, Report of the Board of General Purposes
Supreme Grand Chapter: Address of the First Grand Principal and Report of the Committee of General Purposes
Royal Arch: Cheshire gives a lead
  Walking with the greats: Bath Masonic Hall
Motoring in style: Classic Vehicle Club
Masonic education: A daily advancement and Events for your diary
Travel: Portugal
Library & Museum of Freemasonry
International: A warm welcome in Malta
Masonic ritual: Spoilt for choice
Public relations: Sheffield; Dorset; Chelsea Flower Show; Freemasons' Hall
Letters, Book reviews, Gardening

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Featured Masons

The Duke of Wellington
Neal Arden
Elias Ashmole
Richard Eve
John Pine
Cyril Spackman

Between 1733 and 1737, Pine was engaged on his masterpiece, an edition of the works of Horace. Pine’s Horace is the greatest achievement of 18th-century book art. Each part of the hundreds of pages – from the elegant illustrations based on classical jewels to the text itself – was engraved by Pine himself.
     Such huge projects required lavish funding. In the 18th century, this was obtained by collecting advance subscriptions to the book, an activity in which Pine was a past master. The subscription list to Pine’s Horace is a directory of London’s social and intellectual stars, from the Prince of Wales to Handel, Pope and Hogarth.
     Pine’s contact as a Freemason with aristocrats such as the Duke of Richmond and Lord Inchiquin, while they were Grand Masters, assisted in building up these lists.
     Pine’s entrepreneurial and artistic skills were vital in enabling the surveyor John Rocque to produce the first detailed street plan of London. Rocque’s scheme had foundered due to lack of support, but Pine obtained the backing of the Royal Society and the City Corporation, and again secured vital subscriptions. Pine’s technical expertise as an engraver was essential in preparing the 24 huge sheets of the map, which finally appeared in 1747.
     Pine’s achievements brought office and honour. In 1743, he became Engraver of His Majesty’s Signet and Seals, and in the following year Bluemantle Pursuivant in the College of Arms. Hogarth’s depiction of him as ‘Friar Pine’ doubtless (perhaps deliberately) threatened this hard-won respectability. The prints of Hogarth containing references to Freemasonry have been minutely studied. Yet the works of Pine more effectively evoke the intellectual milieu of Freemasonry before 1750: the determination to recapture the ‘Augustan style’; the concern with antiquity; and the fascination with the new Newtonian science.
     Pine emerges as a man who embodies the spirit of early Freemasonry – intensely sociable but seeking in that sociability to explore the new horizons offered by the ‘century of enlightenment’.

Professor Andrew Prescott is Director of the Centre for Research into Freemasonry at the University of Sheffield


The first Engraved List of Lodges produced by Pine in 1725

Library and Museum of Freemasonry

The summer exhibition at the Library and Museum of Freemasonry, John Pine: the Sociable Craftsman, gathers together for the first time works representing all aspects of Pine’s output, and shows how his various activities encapsulate different facets of the cultural and social life of London at that time.
     The exhibition runs from 5 July to 15 September 2004, Monday to Friday (11am-5pm). Admission free (with a special Saturday opening on 4 September). A series of associated events is being held in conjunction with the exhibition. For more information contact 020 7395 9254 or visit