© 2008 Provincial Grand Court of Wessex
The address to Brethren on the Banner Dedication. Presented by : The Most Worshipful GRAND MASTER: Michael H Roalfe, PGHCh, GCSM
Back to Dedication of the Banner of WESSEX Back to Dedication of the Banner of WESSEX Selection of Photographs Selection of Photographs
Opening Address. R.W.Provincial Grand Master before addressing the Brethren generally may I thank you most sincerely for the honour accorded to me in asking that I act as officiating officer for the ceremony of dedicating the new banner to be used in your Province of Wessex. Brethren, you may be interested to know that when I became Grand Master there was a great debate as to whether the term ‘banner’ of ‘standard should be adopted for its title and that of its bearer. Boutell in his book ‘Heraldry’ states that a banner is a square or oblong amorial flag hung by one of its sides. The Oxford dictionary describes a banner as a square flag on a pole used in a procession and for those who serve under the banner. We thought, perhaps in ignorance, that the term ‘standard’ had more relevance to battles and its use as a rallying point for troops but there is no doubt that Assyrians, Egyptians, Greeks and Romans all fought under their ’banners’ and we can therefore assume that the early Saxons did the same. In the Order of the Red Cross of Constantine the two flags are referred to as ‘standards’ and the red cross was adopted by Constantine as his ‘standard’ to be used at the battle of Milvian Bridge. So not just ignorance but also confusion. In the end it was decided to adopt the Oxford dictionary definition and ‘Banner’ it became. Today the most notable use of a standard or banner is at the annual parade of Trooping the Colour on Horse Guards’ Parade ground where the standards of the regiments are paraded before the troops so that in the heat of battle they may know their rallying point. Address before Dedication
Today, is an historic occasion Brethren, you represent the present and future members of this Province. Later they, and hopefully you, will for many years to come observe your banner borne by a Provincial Grand Banner Bearer following the Provincial Grand Master prior to him opening the Provincial Grand Court of Wessex. The shield on the banner about to be unfurled is headed by an inscription written in Anglo-Saxon that translates as Athelstan King of Wessex. The letters you will observe as A and E when conjoined as a dipthong form the letter that was known as ‘ash’. The next letter, a conjoined ‘b’ and ‘p’ was originally known as ‘porn’ but as its pronunciation was ‘th’ it became known as ‘thorn’. The shield bears upon it a replica of a Wyvern. A two headed dragon with erect wings and a forked tail. Henry of Huntingdon and Matthew of Westminster both write of a banner depicting a golden dragon being raised by the West Saxons at the battle of Burford in 752. The Bayeux Tapestry depicts a golden dragon (fallen) and a red/golden/white dragon at the death of Harold an earlier Earl of Wessex in 1066. The Wyvern is shown placed on a star studded chequered carpet, symbolising masonic stability and therefore a symbolic safe haven. The blue bands of truth connect the different areas of the Province North, South, East and West and at the bottom the cross patance of the Wessex kings. The suspension loops and scroll are identical to the colours of the Provincial badge and collar." The Province is greatly indebted to V.W.Bro. Brian G. Wright the Deputy Provincial Grand Master of the Province for its splendid design. I congratulate him and the Province on the originality, not only of the design chosen for the banner, but also its shape. Both are unique within the Order. Long may you range under its protection in true Brotherly love, harmony and unity. Brethren it gives me great pleasure to dedicate this Banner to the glory of the Supreme Being and Creator of all Things and the Province of Wessex.
© 2008 Provincial Grand Court of Wessex
The address to Brethren on the Banner Dedication. Presented by : The Most Worshipful GRAND MASTER: Michael H Roalfe, PGHCh, GCSM
Back to Dedication of the Banner of WESSEX Back to Dedication of the Banner of WESSEX Selection of Photographs Selection of Photographs
Opening Address. R.W.Provincial Grand Master before addressing the Brethren generally may I thank you most sincerely for the honour accorded to me in asking that I act as officiating officer for the ceremony of dedicating the new banner to be used in your Province of Wessex. Brethren, you may be interested to know that when I became Grand Master there was a great debate as to whether the term ‘banner’ of ‘standard should be adopted for its title and that of its bearer. Boutell in his book ‘Heraldry’ states that a banner is a square or oblong amorial flag hung by one of its sides. The Oxford dictionary describes a banner as a square flag on a pole used in a procession and for those who serve under the banner. We thought, perhaps in ignorance, that the term ‘standard’ had more relevance to battles and its use as a rallying point for troops but there is no doubt that Assyrians, Egyptians, Greeks and Romans all fought under their ’banners’ and we can therefore assume that the early Saxons did the same. In the Order of the Red Cross of Constantine the two flags are referred to as ‘standards’ and the red cross was adopted by Constantine as his ‘standard’ to be used at the battle of Milvian Bridge. So not just ignorance but also confusion. In the end it was decided to adopt the Oxford dictionary definition and ‘Banner’ it became. Today the most notable use of a standard or banner is at the annual parade of Trooping the Colour on Horse Guards’ Parade ground where the standards of the regiments are paraded before the troops so that in the heat of battle they may know their rallying point. Address before Dedication
Today, is an historic occasion Brethren, you represent the present and future members of this Province. Later they, and hopefully you, will for many years to come observe your banner borne by a Provincial Grand Banner Bearer following the Provincial Grand Master prior to him opening the Provincial Grand Court of Wessex. The shield on the banner about to be unfurled is headed by an inscription written in Anglo-Saxon that translates as Athelstan King of Wessex. The letters you will observe as A and E when conjoined as a dipthong form the letter that was known as ‘ash’. The next letter, a conjoined ‘b’ and ‘p’ was originally known as ‘porn’ but as its pronunciation was ‘th’ it became known as ‘thorn’. The shield bears upon it a replica of a Wyvern. A two headed dragon with erect wings and a forked tail. Henry of Huntingdon and Matthew of Westminster both write of a banner depicting a golden dragon being raised by the West Saxons at the battle of Burford in 752. The Bayeux Tapestry depicts a golden dragon (fallen) and a red/golden/white dragon at the death of Harold an earlier Earl of Wessex in 1066. The Wyvern is shown placed on a star studded chequered carpet, symbolising masonic stability and therefore a symbolic safe haven. The blue bands of truth connect the different areas of the Province North, South, East and West and at the bottom the cross patance of the Wessex kings. The suspension loops and scroll are identical to the colours of the Provincial badge and collar." The Province is greatly indebted to V.W.Bro. Brian G. Wright the Deputy Provincial Grand Master of the Province for its splendid design. I congratulate him and the Province on the originality, not only of the design chosen for the banner, but also its shape. Both are unique within the Order. Long may you range under its protection in true Brotherly love, harmony and unity. Brethren it gives me great pleasure to dedicate this Banner to the glory of the Supreme Being and Creator of all Things and the Province of Wessex. T