FREEMASONRY was introduced into Poland in 1736 by the Grand Lodge of England, but in 1739 the Lodges were closed in consequence of the edict of King Augusts II, who enforced the bull of Pope Clement XII.
From 1742 to 1749, Masonry was revived and several Lodges were erected, which flourished for a time, but afterward fell into decay.
In 1766, Count Mosrynski sought to put it on a better footing, and in 1769 a Grand Lodge was formed, of which he was chosen Grand Master.
The Grand Lodge of England recognized this body as a Provincial Grand Lodge. On the first division of Poland, the labors of the Grand Lodge were suspended, but they were revived in 1773 by Count Bruhl, who introduced the ritual of the Strict Observance, established several new Lodges, and acknowledged the supremacy of the United Lodges of Germany.
There was a Lodge in Warsaw, working in the French Rite, under the authority of the Grand Orient of France, and another under the English System.
These differences of Rites created many dissensions, but in August, 1781, the Lodge Catherine of North Star received a warrant as a Provincial Grand Lodge, and on December 27th of the same year the body was organized, and Ignatius Pococki elected Grand Master of all Polish and Lithuanian Lodges, the English system being provisionally adopted.
In 1794, with the dissolution of the kingdom, the Lodges in the Russian and Austrian portions of the partition were suppressed, and those only in Prussian Poland continued their existence.
Upon the creation, by Napoleon, of the Grand Duchy of Warsaw, a Grand Orient of Poland was immediately established. This body continued in operation until 1823, with more than forty Lodges under its obedience.
In November of that year, the Order was interdicted in consequence of the ukase of the Emperor Alexander prohibiting all secret societies, and all the Lodges were thereon closed.
During the revolt of 1830 a few Lodges arose, but they lasted only until the insurrection was suppressed.