Sunday, 21 March 2010

A Matching Pair

When I visited Locksbrook Cemetery in Bath last Summer, I was surprised to find two matching gravestones almost side by side. The first dates from 1906 while the second is from 1908. Perhaps it was the same stonemason working to some form of template?

And then I took some close ups of these works of art:

It was only today, when preparing these for posting, that I realised there were subtle differences.

On the first stone, I cannot tell whether it is male and female hands, but it most certainly is on the second. Then there are the fingers curled round at the bottom of the clasped hands - the first has four while the second only has three. And the flower at the top has subtle differences - especially noticeable with the leaves coming off the stem below the flower . . .

There are probably more differences. How many can you see?

Sunday, 14 March 2010

Keeping hold of a young child's Hand

I've posted before of the graveyard symbolism of putting a image of clasped hands on a gravestone. Here is an example I have not seen before. It depicts an adult hand holding that of a child. Richard Henry, beloved son of Richard Graveson and Mary Evans who died, aged 7 years and 3 months who died on 22 May, 1890.

A sad momento of Mothers Day

Today is Mothering Sunday. I noticed a fresh grave with flowers and a blue baloon. Written upon it in felt tip is the message: "Happy Mothers Day. Donald, Michael and the Gang" A very poignant sight.

The Blackburn Giant

Frederick John Kempster was known as the British Giant and he is buried in Blackburn Cemetery in Lancashire. He caught influenza and developed pneumonia and died in 1918. At the time of his death he was said to be 7ft 11" tall. Later, the undertakers daughter claimed he was actually 8ft 4" and that her father had made a coffin nine feet long. The size of the grave is astonishing when you stand in front of it, as I did today. If you are in the area, you really ought to visit it so you can see for yourselves just how big it is. Amazing! I can remember my parents once telling me about a giant in the 1930s they had seen in the street. He would shake hands with people standing at their upstairs window, but it wasn't Kempster.

Friday, 12 March 2010

He must have Missed her so Much!

This must have been a beautiful mourning figure. Sadly, now with a head and missing an arm. A single word at its base - 'Beloved'. The memorial is inscribed as ' A token of love to Evelyn - the devoted wife of Richard Entwhistle who died on 29 January 1937 aged 43.' Eventually, they were reunited. A panel below records 'Until the Day Dawns - Waiting'. Richard died 5 October 1949 aged 63. A final word on the memorial says it all - 'Reunited'

It's like a Bomb has Dropped!

Just two photographs of the devastation in Blackburn Cemetery. It's like a bomb has dropped. I'll leave you to draw your own conclusions. Me? Sorry, I just don't like it!

A Bouquet of Flowers survives the Whirlwind

Today, I visited Blackburn Cemetery in Lancashire to look for the grave of a British Giant. I did not find it, but I did find areas of desolation where overzealous adherance to Health and Safety has resulted in the flattening of gravestones to prevent them toppling onto unwary visitors. All over Britain, the same has happened - it makes me think a whirlwind is 'unnecessarily' tearing great swathes of destruction across our Victorian hertitage. Most disheartening! That said, I did notice one beautiful work of rememberance lying on the grass. This hand clutching a beautiful bouqet of flowers is the first of this type I have ever seen. Exquisite!

Tuesday, 9 March 2010

Only a Postcard

It is just a postcard of a Victorian cemetery in London which was posted in 1904. It depicts the marvellous Kensal Green Cemetery. What makes it interesting is the message on the reverse.

"Knowing you are of a morbid turn of mind, I send you this. Whenever you have a fit of the blues, just gaze on it. It is like balm to the troubles which are soon gone."

Welcome to the Graveyard Detective

An illustrated look at the World of Graveyards and Cemeteries. There are many Stories behind the Stones that Stand in them. Who knows what we might find?


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