Lewis Masonic, founded in 1801, is the largest and oldest Masonic
publisherin the World. Lewis Masonic is well-known to English Freemasons, as Lewis produces many of the ritual books used by United Grand Lodge of England lodgesand Holy Royal Arch Chapters. Originally called "A Lewis", the name was a pseudonym for John Hogg, who was a Scottish Freemason from Edinburgh who was living in London. Originally the company focused all of its efforts on ritual books, minute books and other products for use in Lodges. Nowadays, Lewis Masonic is an imprint of Ian Allan Publishing(having been acquired in 1973), and has expanded its publishing to reach a broader audience.
The company gets its name from that of a "lewis", which is an item most useful for both operative masons and speculative Masons. A lewis is a steel lifting device consisting of specially shaped wedges and used by stonemasons to lift large stones into place with a crane, chain block or winch, and it is most useful when it is not possible to lift the stone with chains or slings, because of either the location or shape of the stone. The lewis is inserted into a specially prepared seating in the top of a stone, directly above its centre of mass, and works by transferring the stone's weight into leverage on the seating.
In speculative Freemasonry, therefore, a lewis represents strength. The grip of the Lewis that lifts the stone is likened to the grip given to raise the candidate in the third degree. This, to many Freemasons, represents one’s own ability to improve oneself and rise above one’s vices and faults. The word lewis has also come to be the term used to describe the son of a Freemason. The reason for this is quite simple: the son of a Mason supports his parents in the same way a lewis supports and lifts a rock. Lewis Masonic was therefore named after these "lewises" because it was created to support Freemasonry as the other lewises fulfill their support functions, both actual and philosophical.
Lewis Masonic also publishes "The Square", which is England's longest-running Masonic magazine.
* [http://www.Lewismasonic.com Lewis Masonic]
* [http://www.IanAllanpublishing.com Ian Allan Publishing]
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