House of the Temple
Headquarters of The Supreme Council, 33°, of the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry, Southern Jurisdiction, USA
The House of the Temple lies in the heart of Washington, DC.
Two sphinxes, symbolizing Power and Wisdom, guard the temple's main entrance. Carved into a frieze above the massive bronze portals is the words, "FREEMASONRY BUILDS ITS TEMPLES IN THE HEARTS OF MEN AND AMONG NATIONS."
|The sphinxes at either side of the front door are each carved from one massive block of stone. Each weighs over 17 tons. The sphinx on the right of the Temple door symbolizes Wisdom. The eyes on its serene face are half-closed. On the left is the sphinx symbolizing Power. Its eyes are wide open and alert.|
Rising above the sphinxes are 33 stone columns, each 33 feet tall. The columns form a classic peristyle enclosing the Temple Room within.
The House of the Temple's cornerstone was laid on October 18, 1911, and constructed over the next four years following the design of John Russell Pope who also designed the National Archives, Jefferson Memorial, National Gallery of Art, and Constitution Hall in America's capital.