Gravestones, Tombs and Memorials (BRITAIN'S LIVING HISTORY)
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A concise well-illustrated guide to the types of funerary memorials to be found in the churchyards of England. Yorke describes the different types of gravestones, effigies and tombs, and gives guidance on development, dating and regional variations. There are also sections on iconography, and on epitaphs.
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Mortality to which we must all succumb. Some early examples are simply stylised (top) while others were more accurate (middle). They can also be found with crossbones (see Fig 4.7), scythes, sexton’s tools, and in some cases with bat wings (bottom). FIG 4.6: ANGELS: These represent resurrection, the soul of the deceased on its way to heaven. There is a wide selection of local types and stylised early examples (top) while a chubby-cheeked cherub’s head with wings is the most common form in the.
Occasionally be found outside in the churchyard. Those still in good condition may have been re-sited from inside, those worn so as to be unrecognisable may be in their original position. This husband and wife pair dating from around 1600 in the churchyard at Stone, Staffs were inside the medieval church but when a new building was erected a few yards away they were left stranded outside, with the gentleman losing his legs and hands during the demolition. In the Middle Ages the churchyard was.
Foot or so below the surface, which was a great problem when body-snatching was rife. Legislation passed in 1847 meant that the top of the coffin had to be more than 30 inches below the surface and many local authorities, who took over responsibility for burials from the late 19th century, stipulated it should be deeper still. FIG 1.13: Privately-funded cemeteries first appeared in the 1820s and 1830s, most notably six around London, including Kensal Green and Highgate. A series of Burial Acts.
Removed memorials and reused the ground for new burials. Recent listing of many monuments, tombs and gravestones has given some protection to these often disgracefully neglected works of art. FIG 1.14: The ‘lych’ gate, from the Old English word meaning ‘corpse’, was erected as a resting point for the coffin and its bearers as they waited to be welcomed onto consecrated ground by the vicar. Originally they would have had a stone slab or timber shelf onto which the coffin was placed, many having.
Century are rich and varied: some in the hands of skilled masons (their names often carved on the lowest part of the stone) are works of art, others still retain the crude and rustic charm of the previous century. One village with suitable local stone for carving, a skilled mason and clients with sufficient funds to pay for their work could have beautifully decorated gravestones, whereas only a few miles away a parish without one or all these assets could be limited to basic forms of memorial.