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This word the Stuart Freemasons applied to their idol, the Pretender, the son of Charles I. It is this fact that differentiates the Mark Degree from all other ceremonies additional to the first three, and justified the formation of the Mark Grand Lodge, nearly fifty years ago, so as to take under its wing those lodges which worked with interesting and suggestive ceremony the English Craft agreement excluding it from the formally recognized series, according to the Articles of Union of A. 1--at Holyrood House, at which meeting the Laird of Auchinleck was present, and attested the Minutes of the Assembly by his Mark as did the Operatives, in accordance with the Schaw Statutes of December 28, 1598, which provided: "That the day of reassauying, or receiving, of said fallow of craft or master be ord'lie buikit and his name and Mark insert in the said buik."That theoretical Masons selected their Marks just as the Operatives did.
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Masonic writers have generally given to this word the meaning of "is smitten," deriving it probably from the Hebrew verb macha, to smite. The officers are the same as in America, with the addition of a Chaplain, Director of Ceremonies, Assistant Director, Registrar of Marks, Inner Guard or Time Keeper, and two Stewards. Brother Hughan says that the Degree is virtually the same in England, Scotland, and Ireland.
Others, again, think it is the word mak, rottenness, and suppose that it means "he is rotten." Both derivations are, in Brother Mackey's opinion, incorrect. It differs, however, in some respects from the American Degree.