World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Grand Master (order)

Article Id: WHEBN0003273970
Reproduction Date:

Title: Grand Master (order)  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Philosophy in Malta, Timeline of Maltese history, Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden, Maltese Carnival, List of honours of Sweden awarded to heads of state and royals
Collection:
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Grand Master (order)

Grand Master or Sovereign Grand Master is the typical title of the supreme head of various orders, including military orders, orders of knighthood, religious orders, as well as of modern civil fraternal orders such as the Freemasons and the Odd Fellows. Additionally, numerous modern self-styled orders attempt to imitate habits of the former bodies, albeit widely considered invalid.

As most present-day orders are essentially honorary distinctions - as some always were, e.g. the Order of the Golden Fleece - so are its dignities, which may be held by right of birth or another rank. Thus, a sovereign monarch often holds the title of Grand Master of the highest honorary orders, or by custom awards it to a Prince of the blood, regularly the heir to the throne, who in other orders may hold another high rank/title.

In some orders, such as the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, the head may be styled "Sovereign", e.g. Sovereign Grand Master.

History

Medieval era

In medieval military orders such as the Knights Templar or the Livonian Brothers of the Sword, the Grand Master was the formal and executive head of a military and feudal hierarchy, which can be considered a "state within the state", especially in the crusader context lato sensu, notably aimed at the Holy Land or pagan territories in Eastern Europe, as well as the reconquista in the Iberian peninsula.

If an order is granted statehood and thus widely considered sovereign, the Grand Master is also its Head of State. If within the Holy Roman Empire, a Reichsf├╝rst) and Head of Government, and thus a true territorial Prince of the church, as was the case with the Teutonic Knights and the Sovereign Military Order of Malta.

Modern era

The title of Grand Master has been used by the heads of Grand Lodges of Freemasons since 1717, and by Odd Fellows since the 18th century.

See also


This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 



Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.