Thursday, August 20, 2015

York Rite Abbreviations, Initialisms, and Acronyms

In Freemasonry has an extensive list of abbreviations, initialisms, and acronyms for certain terms, groups, and officer titles. This list will focus on terms common to the York Rite of Freemasonry and the chair degrees attached to it; I will also include the abbreviations, initialisms, and acronyms for the optional and invitational groups attached to the York Rite, but I will not include all the various abbreviations, initialisms, and acronyms used in those respective groups (that will be a later article).  Some of them may have multiple meanings which will be separated by a semicolon. Some titles or terms may have different ways to be abbreviated which will also be noted. Punctuation between the letters and abbreviations will vary depending on the type of acronym and what is commonly used for it today; I will post them using the most common method, but several of terms can have punctuation that is interchangeable.. You may see some acronyms and abbreviations with no punctuation, the one dot, or the Therefore sign (:. or .'.); traditionally the Therefore sign is used for mathematics and logic problems, but it has been adopted as a custom for abbreviations in Freemasonry.

To clarify the use of terms: Abbreviation is defined as a shortened or contracted form of a word or phrase, used to represent the whole, Acronyms are abbreviations that are pronounced as words (i.e NATO), and Initialisms are abbreviations that are pronounced one letter at a time (i.e. FBI).

-A-
A.B. - Anno Benefacio meaning the "Year of the Blessing" and is used as a dating system in the Order of the High Priesthood.
A:.Dep:. - Anno Depositionis meaning the "Year of the Deposit" which is used in a Council of Royal and Select Masters (or Cryptic Masons).
A:.Inv:. - Anno Inventionis meaning the "Year of the Discovery," a dating system used in Royal Arch Masonry.
AMD - Allied Masonic Degrees, an invitational body within the York Rite that is dedicated to Masonic Research.
A.O. - Anno Ordinis meaning "Year of the Order" used in a Commandery of Knights Templar for dating their records.

-C-
CBCS - Chevaliers Biefaisants de La City Sainte which is French for Holy Order of Knights Beneficient of the Holy City which is an invitation-only Christian Masonic rite.
C:.G:. - Captain General, a dais officer in the Commandery of Knights Templar and Priory of the Knights of Malta; Captain of the Guards (see also "C.o.G.").
C:.H:. - Captain of the Host, an officer in a Chapter of Royal Arch Masonry (sometimes seen also as "C.H." or "C.O.H.").
Chap. - Chaplain, an officer found in multiple bodies of Freemasonry (may also see "CH" used).
Comp. - Companion, the title for members used in Royal Arch Masonry and Cryptic Masonry.
C.o.G. - Captain of the Guards, an officer in a Council of Cryptic Masons.
C.o.O.: Captain of the Outposts, an officer used in the Priory of the Knights of Malta (the acronym "C.O." may be also used).
C.T. - Companion of the Temple, an honor bestowed by the Grand Encampment on both men and women.

-D-

DC - Department Commander, an officer used by the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar who represents the Grand Encampment to a region, a collection of states or nations.
D:.G:.G:.H:.P:. - Deputy General Grand High Priest, an officer used by the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International who represents the General Grand Chapter to a region, a collection of states or nations.
D:.G:.G:.M:. - Deputy General Grand Master, an officer of the General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons International; there are also Regional Deputy General Grand Master who represents General Grand Council to a region, a collection of states or nations.
D:.G:.H:.P:. - Deputy Grand High Priest, an officer used by some Grand Chapters of Royal Arch Masonry who represent the Grand High Priest to an assigned District within the Grand Chapter's jurisdiction.
D:.G:.M:. - Deputy Grand Master, the second in command for the Grand Encampment.

-E-

E:. - Eminent, an honorary title used for Commanders, Past Commanders, and certain Grand Commandery officers in the Knights Templar (may also see "Em."); Excellent, an honorary title used for High Priests, Past High Priests, and certain Grand Chapter officers in Royal Arch Masonry (see also E.C.).
E.C. - Eminent Commander, the officer in charge of a Commandery of Knights Templar; Excellent Companion, a title sometimes used for High Priests, Past High Priests, and certain Grand officers in Royal Arch Masonry.
E.H.P. - Excellent High Priest, the head of a Chapter of Royal Arch Masonry. 
E.P. - Eminent Prior, the officer in charge of a Priory of the Knights of Malta.

-G-

G:. - Grand, a prefix to titles of officers in Grand bodies as seen throughout Freemasonry.

G:.A:.O:.T:.U:. - Great (or Grand) Architect of the Universe, a generic term used to denote the Supreme Being.
Gen:. - Generalissimo, a dais officer in the Commandery of Knights Templar.

G:.C:. - Grand Chapter, Grand Council, or Grand Commandery: levels of organization in the three bodies of the York Rite of Freemasonry; Grand Commander, the presiding officer of a Grand Commandery (see also "R.E.G.C.); Grand Cross, an honorary title or award used in certain bodies of York Rite Freemasonry; Grand Conclave, the term used for the meeting of a Grand Commandery of Knights Templar.
G:.C:.G:. - Grand Captain General, an officer used in Grand Commanderies and the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar; Grand Captain of the Guard, an officer of a Grand Council of Cryptic Masons.
G:.C:.H.: - Grand Captain of the Host, an officer in a Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons.
GCT - Grand Cross Templar, a version of the KGC awarded to certain members of the College of Honors of the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar.
G.E.K.T. - Grand Encampment of Knights Templar, the highest governing body of Knights Templar in the United States.
G:.G:. - Grand Generalissimo, an officer of a Grand Commandery of Knights Templar and in the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar.
G:.G:.C:. - General Grand Chapter, a level of organization in Royal Arch Masonry usually has authority over Grand Chapters and Chapters that fall outside any Grand Chapter; General Grand Chaplain, an officer of the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International and in the General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons International.
G:.G:.C:.C:. - General Grand Conductor of the Council, an officer in the General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons International.
G:.G:.C:.G:. - General Grand Captain of the Guard, an officer in the General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons International.
G:.G:.C:.H:. - General Grand Captain of Host, an officer of the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International.
G:.G:.H:.P:. - General Grand High Priest, the presiding officer of the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International.
G:.G:.K:. - General Grand King, an officer of the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International.
G:.G:.M:. - General Grand Master (see "M:.P:.G:.G:.M:."); General Grand Marshal, an officer in the General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons International.
G:.G:.M:.1:.V:. - General Grand Master of the First Veil, an officer of the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International (may also use "G:.G:.M:.F:.V:.).
G:.G:.M:.2:.V:. - General Grand Master of the Second Veil, an officer of the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International (may also use "G:.G:.M:.S:.V:.).
G:.G:.M:.3:.V:. - General Grand Master of the Third Veil, an officer of the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International (may also use "G:.G:.M:.T:.V:.).
G:.G:.P:.C:.W:. - General Grand Principal Conductor of the Work, an officer of the General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons International.
G:.G:.P:.S:. - General Grand Principal Sojourner, an officer of the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International.
G:.G:.R:.A:.C:. - General Grand Royal Arch Captain, an officer of the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International.
G:.G:.R:. - General Grand Recorder, the administrative officer for the General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons International.
G:.G.:S:. - General Grand Scribe, an officer of the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International; General Grand Secretary, an officer of the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International; General Grand Steward, an officer of the General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons International; General Grand Sentinel, an officer of the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International and General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons International.
G:.G.:T:. - General Grand Treasurer, an officer of the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International and of the General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons International.
G:.H:.P:. - Grand High Priest, an officer of a Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masonry (see also "M.E.G.H.P.").
G:.J:.W:. - Grand Junior Warden, an officer of a Grand Commandery of Knights Templar.
G:.K:. - Grand King, an officer of a Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masonry.
G:.M:.1:.V:. - Grand Master of the First Veil, an officer of a Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masonry (may also use "G:.M:.F:.V:.).
G:.M:.2:.V:. - Grand Master of the Second Veil, an officer of a Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masonry (may also use "G:.M:.S:.V:.).
G:.M:.3:.V:. - Grand Master of the Third Veil, an officer of a Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masonry (may also use "G:.M:.T:.V:.).
G:.P:. - Grand Prelate, an officer of the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar.
G:.P:.C:.W:. - Grand Principal Conductor of the Work, an officer of a Grand Council of Cryptic Masons.
G:.P:.S:. - Grand Principal Sojourner, an officer of a Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masonry.
G:.R:. - Grand Recorder, an administrative officer in various Grand bodies of York Rite Freemasonry whose duties mirror a Grand Secretary.
G:.R:.A:.C:. - Grand Royal Arch Chapter, a level of organization within Royal Arch Masonry; Grand Royal Arch Captain, an officer of a Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masonry.
G:.S:. - Grand Secretary, an officer of a Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masonry (may also use "G:.Sec:."); Grand Scribe, an officer of a Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masonry; Grand Steward, an officer of a Grand Council of Cryptic Masonry; Grand Sentinel; an officer in a Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons, Grand Council of Cryptic Masons, and Grand Commandery of Knights Templar.
G:.S:.B:. - Grand Standard Bearer (see also "G:.St:.B:."); Grand Sword Bearer (see also "G:.Sw:.B:.").
G:.St:.B:. - Grand Standard Bearer, an officer in a Grand Commandery of Knights Templar.
G:.Sw:.B:. - Grand Sword Bearer, an officer in a Grand Commandery of Knights Templar.
G:.S:.W:. - Grand Senior Warden, an officer of a Grand Commandery of Knights Templar.
G:.T:. - Grand Treasurer, the financial officer in several Grand bodies of York Rite Freemasonry.
G:.W:. - Grand Warder, an officer of a Grand Commandery of Knights Templar.
-H-
H.P. - High Priest (see also "E.H.P.").
HRAKTP - Holy Royal Arch Knight Templar Priests, an honorary and invitational bodies of the American York Rite
-I-
I.O.R.C. - Illustrious Order of Red Cross, the first order conferred by a Commandery of Knights Templar.
Ill:. - Illustrious, an honorary title used in several groups in Freemasonry.
I.M. - Illustrious Master, the presiding officer of a Council of Cryptic Masonry (see also "T.I.M.").
-J-
J.D. - Junior Deacon, an officer used in a Lodge of Mark Master, Lodge of Past Master, Lodge of Most Excellent Master, and Council of Allied Masonic Degrees.
J.W. - Junior Warden, an officer of a Commandery of Knights Templar, Lodge of Mark Masters, and a Lodge of Past Masters.
-K-
KCT - Knight Commander of the Temple, the second highest decoration awarded by the Grand Encampment.
KGC - Knight Grand Cross of the Temple, an award bestowed upon those who have been elected as an officer of the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar.
K.M. - Knight of Malta (see also "O.M.").
K.T. - Knight (or Knights) Templar, a commonly used term for members of a Commandery and who have received the Order of the Temple.
K:. - King, a dais officer in a Chapter of Royal Arch Masons.
KYCH - Knight of the York Cross of Honor, an invitational body within the York Rite available to those who have served as Worshipful Master of a Blue Lodge, High Priest of a Royal Arch Chapter, Illustrious Master of a Council of Cryptic Masons, and Eminent Commander of a Commandery of Knights Templar.
KTCH - Knights Templar Cross of Honor, the highest meritorious award of the Grand Encampment.
-L-
Lt. Com. - Lieutenant Commander, an officer of a Priory of the Knights of Malta (may also see "LC"). 
-M-
Mar. - Marshal, an officer in a a Priory of the Knights of Malta.
M1V - Master of the 1st Veil, an officer of a Chapter of Royal Arch Masons (may also see "M:.F:.V:.).
M2V - Master of the 2nd Veil, an officer of a Chapter of Royal Arch Masons (may also see "M:.S:.V:.).
M3V - Master of the 3rd Veil, an officer of a Chapter of Royal Arch Masons (may also see "M:.T:.V:.).
M.C. - Master of Cavalry, an officer of the Order of the Red Cross.
M.D. - Master of Dispatches, an officer of the Order of the Red Cross.
M.E. - Most Eminent, title applied to office of Grand Master of Templars; Most Excellent, a title for those Companions who are serving or have served as Grand High Priest of a Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons.
MEGHP - Most Excellent Grand High Priest, the presiding officer of a Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons.
M:.E:.G:.M:. - Most Eminent Grand Master, the presiding officer of the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar of the United States of America.
MEM - Most Excellent Master, a degree within Royal Arch Masonry.
M.F. - Master of Finance, officer of the Order of the Red Cross.
M.I. - Master of Infantry, officer of the Order of the Red Cross.
MIGM - Most Illustrious Grand Master, the presiding officer of a Grand Council of Cryptic Masons (or Royal and Select Masters).
MM - Master Mason, title for those who have received the 3rd degree of Freemasonry; Mark Master (also see MMM).
MMM - Mark Master Mason, a degree within American Royal Arch Masonry.
M:.O:. - Master Overseer, an officer of a Lodge of Mark Masters.
M:.P:.G:.G:.M:. - General Grand Master, the presiding officer of the General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons International.
-N-
N.P.D. - non-payment of dues.
-O-
OHP - Order of the High Priesthood, a chair degree for sitting or Past High Priests.
O.M. - Order of Malta, the second order conferred within a Commandery of Knights Templar.
O.R.C. - Order of Red Cross, the first order conferred within a Commandery of Knights Templar (also see "I.O.R.C.").
OST - Order of the Silver Trowel, a chair degree for the sitting or Past Illustrious Masters (Thrice Illustrious Masters).
O.T. - Order of Temple, third and final order conferred within a Commandery of Knights Templar.
-P-
P:. - Past, an honorary title attached to certain members who have served in specific positions throughout Freemasonry; Prelate, an officer within a Commandery of Knights Templar whose duties are comparative to the Chaplain; Prior, the presiding officer of a Priory of the Knights of Malta (also see "Pr.").
P.C. - Prince Chancellor, officer of Red Cross Order; Past Commander (also see P.E.C.).
P:.C:.W:. - Principal Conductor of the Work, a dais officer in a Council of Cryptic Masons.
P.E.C. - Past Eminent Commander, a title given to those Sir Knights who have presided over a Commandery of Knights Templar.
PGHP - Past Grand High Priest, a title given to those who have presided over a Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons; this title can be preceded by the abbreviation "M.E.".
PIM - Past Illustrious Master, a title given to those Companions who have presided over a Council of Cryptic Masons.
P.M.P. - Price Master of Palace, an officer of the Order of the Red Cross.
Pr. - Prior (also see "P:.").
Prel.: - Prelate, (also see "P:.").
PS - Principal Sojourner, an officer in a Chapter of Royal Arch Masons.
-R-
RA - Royal Arch.
RAC - Royal Arch Captain, an officer in a Chapter of Royal Arch Masons.
RAM - Royal Arch Mason; Royal Arch Masonry.
RCC - Red Cross of Constantine, an invitational body stemming off of Royal Arch Masonry.
Rec:. - Recorder, the administrative officer of a Commandery of Knights Templar.
R.E. - Right Eminent, an honorary title applied to a Grand or Past Grand Commander; Right Excellent, an honorary title applied to certain Grand Chapter officers of Royal Arch Masonry.
RER - "Rite Ecossais Rectifie" meaning Rectified Scottish Rite (see also "CBCS").
R:.M:. - Royal Master, the first degree within the Cryptic Rite.
ROOS - Royal Order of Scotland, is an invitational order connecting both to the Scottish Rite and York Rite.
R.'. & S.'. M.'. - Royal and Select Masters, two degrees of the Cryptic Rite (see also "R:.M:." and "S:.M:.").
RW - Right Worshipful, the honorary title used for several titles in Freemasonry.
RWM - Right Worshipful Master, the presiding officer of a Lodge of Mark Masters, Lodge of Past Masters, and a Lodge of Most Excellent Masters.
-S-
S:. - Scribe, a dais officer in a Chapter of Royal Arch Masons; Sentinel, an officer in a Chapter of Royal Arch Masons, Council of Cryptic Masons, and Commandery of Knights Templar (equatable to the Tiler in the Blue Lodge); Secretary (also see "Sec:.").
SAOTU - Supreme Architect of the Universe, another generic term used to denote the Supreme Being.
SD - Senior Deacon, an officer in a Lodge of Mark Masters, Lodge of Past Masters, and a Lodge of Most Excellent Masters.
Sec:. - Secretary, the administrative officer in several groups in Freemasonry such as Royal Arch Masons and Cryptic Masons (also see "Rec:.).
Sen. - Sentinel (also see "S:.").
SEM - Super Excellent Master, an optional degree within the Cryptic Rite.
SK - Sir Knight, a title given to members of a Commandery of Knights Templar.
S:.M:. - Select Master, the second degree of the Cryptic Rite; Sovereign Master, the presiding officer of a Council of the Illustrious Order of the Red Cross.
S:.O:. - Senior Overseer, an officer of a Lodge of Mark Masters. 
S.'.S.'. - Sanctum Sanctorum or Holy of Holies
St:.B:. - Standard Bearer, an officer in a Commandery of Knights Templar.
S.W. - Senior Warden, an officer in a Commandery of Knights Templar.
Sw:.B:. - Sword Bearer, an officer in a Commandery of Knights Templar.
-T-
Treas:. - Treasurer, the financial officer in several Masonic groups.
T.I.M. - Thrice Illustrious Master, 
T.'. - Treasurer (see also "Treas:.").
-U-
UD - Under Dispensation
-V-
V.E. - Very Eminent, title applied to Deputy Grand Commander. 
VIC - Very Illustrious Companion
-W-
W. - Warder
-Y-
YRSCNA - York Rite Sovereign College of North America, an invitational order within the York Rite dedicated to improving the York Rite of Freemasonry through education and enhanced ritual presentation.
If you know of others not posted, please contact me.

References

1. Abbreviations and Reference Words. n.d. http://phoenixmasonry.org/abbreviations_and_reference_words.htm.

2. Abbreviations vs. Acronyms vs. Initialisms. March 17, 2008. http://data.grammarbook.com/blog/abbreviations/abbreviations-acronyms-and-initialisms-revisited/.

3. Bessel, Paul M. Masonic Abbreviations. n.d. http://www.bessel.org/abbrevs.htm.

4. Denslow, Ray V. A Templar Encyclopedia. 1951. http://www.phoenixmasonry.org/templar_encyclopedia.htm.

5. Masonic Abbreviations. n.d. http://www.themasonictrowel.com/education/references/mabbreviations.htm.

6. Masonic Abbreviations. n.d. http://freemasoninformation.com/masonic-education/freemasonry-in-general/masonic-abbreviations/.

7. Grand Officers. 2015. http://www.knightstemplar.org/officers.html.

8. Leadership. 2014. http://www.ggccmi.org/index.php/leadership-and-contacts.

9. Marshall, George L. Grand Encampment Awards and Honors. 2014. http://www.knightstemplar.org/KnightTemplar/articles/20140828.htm.

10. Officers. 2014. http://www.ramint.org/officers.htm.

11. Order of the High Priesthood. n.d. http://www.idyorkrite.org/index.php/order-of-high-priesthood.

12. Order of the Silver Trowel. n.d. http://www.idyorkrite.org/index.php/order-of-the-silver-trowel.

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