FREE - Interdisciplinary Research Group Freemasonry

The scientific research, and especially historiography concerning freemasonry in Europe has been expanding rapidly in the last decade. A tightly-knit research community has been formed on the European level, and to some extent even on a global scale. The many research centres, situated notably in Spain, The Netherlands, Great Britain and France, structure this field. In Belgium, the Interdisciplinary Research Group Freemasonry (FREE), which was founded at the VUB in 2005, has contributed actively to this network by organizing and participating in seminars, workshops and international conferences such as the International Conferences on the History of Freemasonry and by presenting its research through publications such as the Journal of Research into Freemasonry and Fraternalism. The research group studies the way in which masonic lodges and freemasons have contributed to the shaping of a new civil society in a secularised world. Freemasonry is thus used as a lens through which broader social, political and cultural phenomena can be analysed. Today, members of FREE are investigating subjects as diverse as the construction of national identities, the social and political role of musicians and music, anti-masonry, funerary culture and fraternalism.


  • Chairman: Prof. dr. Jeffrey Tyssens
  • Vice-Chairman: Prof. dr. Jef Van Bellingen
  • Members: Prof.dr. Jan Gorus, Prof.dr. Jean Paul Van Bendegem, Prof.dr. Rudolf De Smet, Prof.dr. Gustaaf Cornelis, Prof.dr. Eric Gubel, dr. Max de Haan, dr. Anaïs Maes, Jimmy Koppen, Wim Van Moer, Kees Veenstra, Jan Van den Brande en David Vergauwen
  • Address: Vrije Universiteit Brussel - HIST, Pleinlaan 2, B-1050 Brussels, Belgium
  •  tel: 0032 2 629 13 71


  • De vrijmetselarij en de constructie van nationale identiteiten in België (19e eeuw / vroege 20ste eeuw), Jeffrey Tyssens & Anaïs Maes


European Freemasonry: International Study Day 2013
In cooperation with the Université Michel de Montaigne - Bordeaux III and the University College London, the Interdisciplinary Research Group Freemasonry organized the Doctoral Students Day on the History of Freemasonry on Wednesday 27 March 2013.   The Study day took place in the Belgian Museum of Freemasonry in Brussels City. >> more information

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