Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Granary Burying Ground (Boston, MA) - Part 1

My next set of Boston gravestone photos is from the Granary Burying Ground. I have so many great images from this, and following cemeteries that I'll have to split them up. There are also many beautiful examples of some of the symbols I've already discussed, which I'd love to include but would be awfully repetitive. As much as I love seeing them over and over... only I would love seeing them over and over again.

 Here we have two winged cherubs holding up a crown, something a little different from the other symbols we've seen from Boston so far. Like the wings used here and on the death's heads that are so often used on other stones, the crown is often used to represent triumph over death, or is a reference to the biblical "crown of life."

 Compared to the last image, this is void of religious references. A simple skull and crossbones done in a different style, with the skull facing at an angle and the lower jaw bone missing. There is also a small hourglass right underneath the bones to denote the passage of time in addition to the literal representation of the dead body.

 Speaking of hourglasses, here's another one! This one takes the place of any sort of skull or face, with a set of wings attached. Pretty easy to figure out, as with many of the symbols here it is meant to represent mortality, and the fleeting nature of life.

This is a fun little scene that I really love-- and with more hourglasses, which I didn't realize until now. I guess I'm having an hourglass theme today. I just love the reclining figures of Death, with their scythes. They're very casual about the whole thing, just doing their job.

This is another style that I love because of how strange it is. The engraving is a bit worn and it's not a great shot, so I hope you can see it. Along both sides of the skull there are what seem to be tentacles. It's like a Cthulhu skull, which is just so odd for this time period. Even better, the skull has a delightful curious expression on its face. 

Gravestone Symbols and their Meanings via Ringgold County IAGenWeb Project
Granary Burying Ground via City of Boston

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