Worshipful Society of Freemasons, Rough Masons, Wallers, Slaters, Paviors, Plaisterers and Bricklayers
Ritual III° Super Fellow Fitter and Marker


Preamble to the III°
In olden times a III° Lodge was entered by a porchway from the II° Lodge. The porchway was guarded by the O.G and the III° was guarded by the I.G. Therefore, ideally there should be three rooms but, if only two are available, then the outside room must divided by some artificial means.
The Candidate must have with him his jewel and certificate as a Fellow of the Craft, form W, complete except for signature and be wearing a Fellow of the Craft’s apron. Any other Candidates must complete form W, including signature1 and hand these to the Clerk before the start of the ceremony. A perfect ashlar stone of the proportions 3 x 1 x 1 should be conveniently available for the S.W’s.D. later in the ceremony.
The Assemblage has been previously opened and necessary business has been completed.
D.M.M.: I must now ask all Apprentices to retire. done. And I close the doors to the I° Lodge. No adjustment need be made to the H.B.
Examining and Entrusting the Candidate in the II° Lodge
D.M.M.: Any Fellow of the Craft deeming himself qualified and desiring promotion may now make his application. Only the representative Candidate rises.
S.W’s.D. conducts Cand. to the Clerk’s table to sign form W.
S.W’s.D. conducts Cand. to S.I.W. to whom, on being prompted by the S.W’s Deacon, he hands form W.
Cand., prompted by S.W’s.D.: I desire promotion to the grade of Super Fellow. Will you vouch for my good character?
S.I.W. signs form W and returns it to the Cand.
S.W’s.D conducts Cand., carrying his Certificate and form W, to the S.E.Corner where he stands facing the D.M.M.. His feet are not in any ritualistic position.
Cand., prompted by S.W’s.D. shows II° sign which is answered by D.M.M.
Cand.: W.D.M.M., I request permission to read my application.
D.M.M.: Pray read it. Done.
D M.M.: Your application will receive attention.
D.M.M.: Worthy S.I.W., pray examine the candidate.
S.I.W.  approaches the Cand. carrying two-armed square and a II° rule.
S.I.W.: Show me your certificate as a Fellow of the Craft.
Cand. hands his certificate to the S.I.W., who examines and returns it.
S.I.W. to Cand.: Are you a Fellow of the Craft?
Cand., prompted by S.W’s.D.: I am, try me and prove me.
S.I.W. to Cand.: By what will you be proved?
Cand., prompted by S.W’s.D.: By the Perfect Ashlar square.
S.I.W. to Cand.: What is this square?
Cand., prompted by S.W’s.D.: It has four sides and four right angles.
S.J.W. to Cand.: How do you prove the correctness of this square?
Cand., prompted by S.W’s.D.: By measuring the two diameters. (Used with its ancient meaning of diagonals).
S.I.W. to Cand.: Show me a specimen of your work.
S.W’s.D. hands Cand. a 3 x 1 x 1 perfect ashlar stone.
Cand., prompted by S.W’s.D. hands the stone to the S.I.W.
S.I.W. examines stone by square and rule and, being satisfied, takes candidate’s certificate and form W.
S.I.W. to D.M.M.: The candidate is well qualified W.D.M.M. and his work is excellent.
S.I.W. places ashlar stone to the N. of the centre column, hands candidate’s certificate and form W to the Clerk and returns to his seat.
S.I.W. conducts other candidates to the D.M.M. who stand equally on either side of the representative candidate.
D.M.M.: Are you willing to take an Obligation of secrecy?
Cand., prompted by S.W’s.D.: I am.
D.M.M.: Do you promise that you will steadily persevere through the ceremony of advancement to Super Fellow Fitter and Marker?
Cand., prompted by S.W’s.D.: I do.
D.M.M.: Do you promise to continue to respect your Obligation as Fellow of the Craft?
Cand., prompted by S.W’s.D.: I do and will.
D.M.M.: Do you promise to conceal what I am now about to impart to you?
Cand., prompted by S.W’s.D.: I do.
D.M.M.: Then I will entrust you with a passing grip and passing word to enable you to enter a Lodge of Fitters and Markers.
In olden times these would have been communicated to you privately, therefore, I must ask all below the degree of Fitter and Marker, with the exception of the Candidates, to retire. (done).
D.M.M.: The passing grip is …, the passing word is B…i. As you have proved your ability to produce perfect ashlar stones you would now be entitled to another sign and word. That sign I am permitted to communicate to you. It is raising the right arm vertically, hand with fingers and thumb together in line with the arm; at the same time raise the left arm to the horizontal position to the side, hand, with fingers and thumb together, in line with the arm, both palms forward. In giving this sign you represent, at the same time, the square, the level (drop R. arm) and the plumb-rule (drop L. arm and raise R. arm), the three working tools of a Fellow of the Craft. The word which, in operative days would have been communicated to you now, has been adopted by speculative Freemasonry and may not in these days be communicated to you until you achieve the VI° of our Society.
D.M.M.: You will now retire.
Cand. retires, under the direction of the S.W’s.D., and followed by all the other Candidates.
Opening of the IIILodge by Power
D.M.M. kns. *., all rise: By the power deputed to me by the G.M.Ms. at my appointment to rule over this Assemblage I open a Lodge for work in the III° and close the doors to all other Lodges. I demand the hailing sign of a Fitter and Marker. Held until discharged by D.M.M. giving the p.s.
D.M.M., Dep.J., Dep.B. & S.I.W. proceed to Altar, change H.B. to Job 33, v. 31 and return.
D.M.M. gives knocks *   *   **, repeated by S.W., J.W., I.G. and O.G. (All sit).
S.I.W., D.M.M’s.D. & J.W’s.D. lay down carpet strips 10”/12” wide to form a rectangle on the floor with “internal” dimensions of 12’ x 4’.
The rectangle represents a template or pattern of the wall plan of the Temple. The template should be continuous with no spaces left for doors nor windows.
The R.S. Gauge is placed on the floor to the East of the centre column with a kneeling stool within it. The gauge should not overlap the carpet strips and there should be room between the west end of the template and the D.M.M’s. column for the gauge to be placed there later in the ceremony.
Within the II° Lodge
When the S.W’s.D. and the Candidates retire they pass through the Porch or Preparation room to the Outer room which now represents the II° Lodge.
S.W’s.D. prepares the Cand. by clothing him in a white cloak with the Fellow of the Craft’s apron bound over it. His ankles are roped, to limit his step to one cubit or 21 7/8 inches. All the Cands. must see this preparation.
Within the Preparation Room
S.W’a.D. Knocks *   *   ** on the outer door - or on the floor with his foot - and is admitted with all the Candidates by the O.G.
S.W’s.D. to Cand.: As you previously have been informed, in all the rites of this Society the Candidate represents a “living stone” which is being wrought from the rough to a state of perfection. In the III° Lodge you represent a perfect ashlar stone which has to be fitted to its neighbours, marked and numbered, and approved as ready for erection on the site of the Holy Temple. It was in this Lodge that every stone was made ready before it was brought to the site as explained in verse seven of chapter six in the First Book of Kings (reads). “And the house, when It was in building, was built of stone made ready before it was brought thither; so that there was neither hammer nor ax nor any tool of iron heard in the house while in was In building.”
S.W’s.D. to Cand.: Were you given the passing grip and passing word by the D.M.M. of your Fellows Lodge?
Cand., prompted by O.G.: I was.
S.W’s.D.: Then you will follow me.
III° Ceremony
S.W’s.D. knocks *   *   ** on Inner Door.
I.G. opens door: Who comes?
S.W’s.D.: The Fellow Mason … (name) who has duly and truly served his time as a Fellow of the Craft, has prepared work which has entitled him to receive the passing grip and passing word and who desires to become a Super Fellow Fitter and Marker that he may be able to work in a III° Lodge, fitting and marking the stones before they are sent to the site of the Temple for erection.
I.G. to Cand.: Give me the passing grip and passing word. Done.
I.G.: Wait while I report. Closes door.
I.G.: W.D.M.M., the Fellow Mason … (name of Cand.) who has given me the passing grip and passing word.
D.M.M.: Let him be admitted in due form.
I.G. opens door to Cand.: Enter on the chisel at your head. I.G. places chisel near Cand’s. head and gives it one blow with a mallet. All other Cands. are received in the same manner.
S.I.W. conducts other Cands. to seats in the S.E.
S.W’s.D. places Cand. in the S.E. Corner facing the D.M.M.
D.M.Ms.D. places a kneeling stool in front of the Cand. and takes charge of him.
S.Ws.D. Returns to his seat.
D.M.M. to Cand.: You will kneel while the blessing of heaven is invoked on our proceedings. done.
D.M.M. Knocks *. All stand with sign.
Dep.J.: We supplicate the continuance of Thy blessing O El Shaddai on behalf of ourselves and of our Brother and Fellow who kneels before Thee. Pour down on our Assemblage the continual dew of Thy blessing; and grant that this Candidate, and all of us, whether footing atones, running stones or headstones, may be marked with Thy emblem of approbation as fitted to form part of Thy heavenly Temple where peace, order and harmony eternally reign. Amen.
Omnes: So Mote It Be.
D.M.M. to Cand.: Rise. Let him be led round the Template. All sit.
S.W’s.D. removes kneeling stool and places it to E. of Centre column.
D.M.M’s.D. to Cand.: Walk round the Template and at the end you will know how many cubits it is. Step off with your left foot to the full length of the cubit cord and make your other paces of the same length.
D.M.M’s.D. conducts the Cand. once around the rectangle, representing the Template of the wall plan, keeping on the strips of carpet which he should not overstep.
D.M.M’s.D. stops Cand. in the centre of the E. wall in front of the S.W. and turns him to face the D.M.M. in the W.
D.M.M.: In operative days you would have been required to walk three times round the Lodge on the template. You would then have chosen your mark which would have been duly registered, As you already have a mark the ceremony will not be repeated. You must, however, register your mark with the Clerk in due course.
D.M.M.: Before I can advance you to the rank you seek I must point out to you that in every degree of our Worshipful Society the secret tokens of membership as well as our methods of work, whether In rites or in the working of stone in the yards, must be kept separate and distinct, therefore another oath is required of you. Are you prepared to take it?
Cand., prompted by D.M.M’s.D.: I am.
D.M.M’s.D. leads Cand. to the Centre column.
S.I.W. leads other Cands. via the E. to stand behind Rep. Cand.
D.M.M. knocks *. All stand with sign.
D.M.M. moves to Centre column and says: Then you will kneel, symbolically with both knees bare, on the perfect ashlar stone.
S.I.W.  provides the H.B. open at Job 33, v. 31.
D.M.M.: Support the H.B. on your left hand and place your right hand on it. The other Cands. will each place his left hand on the shoulder of the Fellow in front and give the sign of F. with the right hand.
D.M.M.: State your names at length and mentally assent to the oath I shall now read to you. I, ...,  in the presence of El Shaddai and of this Worthy and Worshipful Lodge of Super Fellow Fitters and Markers, do hereby and hereon, solemnly confirm my former obligation as a Fellow of the Craft of Free Mason and do further swear that I will never divulge the secrets of my reception, nor the instruction which I am about to receive, to anyone in the world, unless it be to a free and regularly passed Super Fellow of the said Craft, whom I have sufficient reason to believe has come by them as regularly as I am now about to do, or in the body of a Regular Lodge of Super Fellows consisting of three or more, presided over by the D.M.M., the S.I.W. or a duly Passed Master VI°. I will acknowledge my own Mark and cut it only on stones which I have carefully prepared. I will strictly respect the Marks of all Super Fellow Fitters and Markers and keep my former obligation to give aid in time of need.
D.M.M.: If you accept this obligation you will now repeat after me: All these points I solemnly swear to observe under no less a penalty than that of having my right hand struck off that I may no longer be able to give the grip. So help me El Shaddai and keep me steadfast in this my obligation of a Super Fellow Fitter and Marker.
D.M.M.: As a pledge of your sincerity you will seal that obligation thrice with your, lips on the H.B. (done).
S.I.W. offers another H.B. for each of the other Cands. to seal his obligation. (done).
D.M.M.: The Book is open at the verse which reads: “Mark well, O Job; harken unto me; hold thy peace and I will speak”.
S.I.W. takes H.B. from Cand.
D.M.M.: Rise, accepted Super Fellow Fitter and Marker.
D.M.M. returns to his seat and all sit.
S.I.W. returns supernumerary Cands. to the S.E.
D.M.M’s.D. conducts Cand. to a position in the E. outside the template and facing W.
D.M.M. to Cand.: For the better elucidation of the methods of work in this Lodge it is desirable that you proceed to the Second Degree yard to prepare a specimen of your work under the guidance of at least three Super Fellow Fitters and Markers of the present Lodge.
D.M.M’s.D., S.W’s.D., J.W’s.D. & Others (not more than seven) retire with the Cand(s). to the Porch.
S.I.W.  nominates four members to act as corner stones later in the ceremony.
D.M.M’s.D. removes cubit cord from Cand.
D.M.M’s.D., after idling for a short time says to Cand.: Though you are sent to prepare stones for the building, you have already been informed that you, yourself, are a stone already wrought from the rough to the perfect ashlar. Let us therefore re-enter the Lodge for the time is at hand when the first course of stones must be fitted.
All who went out now re-enter the Lodge and take their seats. No knocks are required as all are known to the I.G.
D.M.M.: When King Solomon laid the foundation of the Temple on the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite, he declared it holy ground and forbade all noise of tools of iron under pain of death. Therefore it becomes necessary that, before erection on the site, every stone must. be fitted and marked in the III° yard in which there is a full size template or wall plan of the Temple. In the forthcoming ceremony the Fellows represent a course of stones to be fitted and marked.
D.M.M.: Worthy S.I.W., let the first course be placed in position on the Temple template, 60 by 20 cubits, and let the stones be tested, fitted and marked ready for conveyance to the site.
S.I.W., loudly: Every stone to his place!
All, except D.M.M., Dep.J., Dep.B., S.I.W. and Wardens, speedily arrange themselves on the “carpet strips”, shoulder to shoulder, facing inwards. The nominated “corner stones” take up their positions (right foot in hollow of left, right foot pointing to right along the template).
D.M.M’s.D. places Cand. on the North side of the template adjacent to the N.E. corner stone. The representative Candidate moves to the right to make room for other Cands. on his left, the last Candidate being adjacent to the corner stone.
D.M.M’s.D. places himself on the right of the Candidate(s).
S.I.W.: W.D.M.M., the first course of stones is ready to be sent to the Temple site.
D.M.M. to S.I.W.: Are they complete and are they all perfectly fitted and marked for the Super Fellow Setter Erectors?
S.I.W.: They are W.D.M.M.
D.M.M.: Then I will examine them.
D.M.M. goes to N.E.Corner and takes III° grip (Lewis covered by challenged) and word (J…A) from that member. Moving clockwise he examines each stone with grip and word until he arrives at the Cand.
S.I.W.  follows the D.M.M. carrying a chisel and small maul.
D.M.M. to S.I.W. and pointing to Cand.: Here is a stone which has not been fitted to the one at its side and is not marked! Angrily: How comes it here?
Cand., prompted by D.M.M’s.D.: I entered with the others.
D.M.M. to Cand., still angrily: This must be enquired into. The penalty is a serious one for allowing an unmarked stone to enter here. What say you?
D.M.M’s.D. to D.M.M.: We are all equally guilty and to blame for this serious fault, W.D.M.M. We beg you will pardon the omission and allow him to be fitted and marked for we can vouch that he has been well and truly prepared. We will answer for his fidelity to Cand.: is this not so? Will you pledge your fidelity?
Cand., prompted by D.M.M’s.D.: I pledge myself. Prompted by D.M.M’s.D. gives sign of Secrecy.
D.M.M., after a short pause for consideration: You have gone too far to withdraw. Nevertheless, as you have made the sign of secrecy, I will remit the usual penalty of having your right hand struck off and I will accede to the request and proceed to mark you.
S.I.W. hands chisel and maul to D.M.M.
D.M.M. marks Cand. on breast by symbolically cutting an equilateral triangle with maul and chisel.
Single taps only with maul. Other Cands. are marked in the same way and the maul and chisel are returned to the S.I.W.
D.M.M.: In olden times the Cand. was marked indelibly in blue.
D.M.M. & S.I.W. return to their seats.
D.M.M.: The course is now complete and will be sent to the site. All sit.
D.M.M’s.D. places Cand(s) before D.M.M. in W.
D.M.M.: I will now instruct you in the grip, word and signs. of a Super Fellow Fitter and Marker. The grip is a Lewis. This must always be covered by the Fellow who is challenged. It is never complete without the word nor can the w. be given without the grip The word is J…A. The D.G. or Hailing Sign which must be given when entering or leaving a III° Lodge or when addressing the D.M.M. thereof is given thus, extending the right hand, index finger and second finger extended, third and fourth fingers closed over the palm of your hand and, as always must be maintained until it is answered by the Penal Sign. The Emblematical sign is given by striking both thighs with both hands in allusion to the two pillars at the Porch Entrance of King Solomon’s Temple. The signs of secrecy and distress are the same as for Apprentices and Fellows and throughout the Society.
D.M.M.: You must now pass the test of the running stone gauge as a living stone.
S.I.W. places the R.S.G. on the floor behind the Cand.
S.W. & J.W. take position at each end of the gauge.
S.I.W. instructs Cand(s). to step backwards into the frame. (done).
S.W. and J.W. raise the frame over the Candidates’ head.
S.I.W. reports: The Cand. passes the test. With more than one Cand. “The Candidates pass the test”.
D.M.M.: Thus we receive you as (a) Super Fellow Fitter(s) and Marker(s).
S.W. & J.W. resume their seats.
S.I.W. removes R.S.G. to a convenient place.
D.M.M’s.D. removes Candidate’s II° apron.
D.M.M.:  I invest you with the apron of a Super Fellow Fitter and Marker which bears a representation of the working tools of the Degree. I also invest you with the jewel of a Fitter and Marker, the running stone gauge. done.
D.M.M.: I present to you the working tools of a Super Fellow, the mallet and chisel.
D.M.M. receives working tools from the S.I.W., shows them to the Cand. and returns them to the S.I.W.
D.M.M.: We symbolise your advancement by representing the cubic ashlar in this form.
D.M.M. shows the cube both open and closed and says: “This is the second development of the cube.
D.M.M.: The rule is twelve units long with two hinges dividing it into lengths of three, five and four units.
D.M.M.: The knocks are *   *   ** and the H.B. is open at Job 33, v. 31.
Dep.J. reads Job 33, v. 31.
D.M.M.: You will now sign the roll of Super Fellow Fitters and Markers and register your mark at the Clerk’s table. (Done by all Candidates).
S.I.W. conducts supernumerary Cands. to their seats.
D.M.M’s.D. conducts Cand. to the S.W. corner where he stands facing North.
D.M.M. to Cand.: This completes the operative part of the ceremony. Those points which are dealt with in speculative Mark Masonry have been omitted as you are already aware of them. At this point, in operative days, practical Instruction was given on the testing and fitting of stones and a lecture was delivered dealing with various traditions connected with the construction of the Temple at Jerusalem. We wish you well.
D.M.M’s.D. conducts Cand. to his seat.
Orator or Clerk or some member of the VI° reads the lecture.
III° Lecture
The charges which follow the I° and the II° date from the 17th century and possibly quite earlier. Nothing comparable has come down to us to indicate the wording of the charges to be given after the III° and IV°, but it seems likely that charges in one form or another were given.
The III° and IV° were more closely connected than the others and one account - possibly in error - shows them as a single degree. Brother Stretton states that the full working took 8everal hours and hints that details may have been Included of parts of what we now know as the Royal Arch, Cryptic and Allied Degrees.
In the I° the Apprentices were taught their work and in practice shaped the stones, as received from the quarries, by truing them fairly accurately to size. When Sir Christopher Wren ordered stones from the quarries at Portland, the stones were “scrabbled” before leaving the quarries. Stretton says that, in his time, stones were delivered “scrabbled” from the quarries so as to be approximately 2” over-size. The scrabbling was done with gavels - that is with hammers with one flat face and one chisel edge. Scrabblers were considered to be cowans and not true members of the Craft of Free Mason. Gavels of this form likewise were not included among the working tools of a true Free Mason.
In the II° the Fellows of the Craft of Free Mason shaped the stones received from the Apprentices true to the size required. Their labours were considerably reduced by already having the stone roughly prepared, firstly by the scrabblers in the quarry, and secondly by the Apprentices in the I° yard.
Before he could be promoted from the II° to the III° a Fellow had to give proof of his proficiency by preparing a “masterpiece”, which may have been a cubical stone true to size and shape, and smoothed or even polished on all its faces.
To spoil such a stone, by cutting too deeply, quite evidently would have been a serious matter. To raise such a stone to its position on the walls was also quite an undertaking to be sure that, having raised it there, every care had to be taken previously to ensure that it would fit its neighbours on each side and beneath it. The work of the Fitter and Marker was to fit the stones one to another. This was done by laying out the stones for each course on the ground according to a template or pattern provided, and by making such minor adjustments as might be required.
The template itself is said to have been in the form of a series of diamonds or lozenge shapes; each diamond being formed by four 3x4x5 triangles. If so, it would look very much like the pattern on a Royal Arch sash. It may account for the traditional “indented” border of the speculative Lodge carpet. It is probable that the preparation of the template was the province of the V° or VI° masons.
One of our members, a Purbeck “marbler” has stated that his father when making, for example, a column of Purbeck marble, would assemble and, if necessary, adjust the individual stones in his workshop before transporting the stones to the building site for erection.
To fit the stones in this manner meant that each course for the building had to be completed at one time. It also meant that the stones, having been fitted one to another had to be in the same position in the actual building. To ensure this, it was nece8sary to mark the stones so that intended positions would be known to the Setter Erectors. The method of marking will be described in the lecture that follows the IV°.
We have no satisfactory account of the development of the cube. It has been stated, however, that the Apprentice started on the side opposite the “bed mark” followed by the “bed marked” side, then by the other sides, though in what order these were worked is not now known. Perhaps in the II° and III° the faces were worked in a different order and the various developments of the cube were used as an aid to memory.
In the III° yard, stones would be tested for their soundness and each would be inspected and marked by three independent overseers.
The III° gives practical explanation of the Scriptures — 1 Kings, VI  v7 — “And the House when it was in building, was built of stone made ready before it was brought thither; so that there was neither hammer, nor ax, nor any tool of iron heard in the House when it was in building”.
D.M.M’s.D. assists the Cand. to disrobe.
S.I.W. assisted by the other Deacons clears the template and perfect ashlar from the floor.
Closing the III° Lodge by Power
D.M.M., knocks *. All stand.
D.M.M.: By the power deputed to me by the Grand Master Masons at my appointment to rule over an Assemblage I close this III° Lodge and open the doors to all Lodges IV°. to I°.
D.M.M., Dep.J., Dep.B. & S.I.W. proceed to the central column, change the H.B. to Ruth IV, v. 7 and return to their places.
D.M.M. knocks *   *   **, followed by S.W., J.W., I.G. and O.G.. All sit.
D.M.M. Asks I.G. to admit any members of the lower degrees.