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Churchyards of England and Wales Hardcover – 1994

4.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Magna; Reprint edition (1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1854226134
  • ISBN-13: 978-1854226136
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 20.6 x 2.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 90,222 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

The author looks at the origins and history of churchyards, the legends surrounding many of them, the extraordinary paraphernalia to be found there, some of their traditions and rituals, and of course their notable burials and inscriptions. Many churchyards have macabre happenings and pagan associations to relate, and the author does not flinch from full discussion of these aspects of his subject, but finds a surprising amount of humour there too, and offers something to appeal to everyone in his survey of these repositories of so much English and Welsh local history. The book is illustrated with more than 100 photographs and drawings.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Cant comment on this personally but it was purchased as a gift for someone reseraching family history.I understand this provided some hints and tips which enabled them to glean information they required to further their research.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
would recomend
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0x99f844c8) out of 5 stars 1 review
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x98dc3684) out of 5 stars The only way this book would be more enjoyable for me is if all the pictures were in color! 20 Dec. 2014
By Jane in Milwaukee - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I must be a ghoul or something. My husband is from England and the first time I visited over 20 years ago, I was immediately taken with the ancient cemeteries. In Carlisle England, they have the current modern part and then the old part separated a bit by trees and hedges. There is something so forlorn but appealing to me about a row of wide and tall but thin gravestones that are so covered in lichen or were made of too-soft limestone that you can no longer read the epitaph, names or dates. But also, near the crematorium, is a special little area with large Beatrix Potter figures--Peter Rabbit and friends--called the Children's Cemetery. It is heartbreaking to walk through it and see little statues of cherubs. Many of epitaphs announce that the baby was "born asleep" with the birth and death dates being the same...stillbirths. The love poured into the designs and messages really gets to me.

Anyway, the first time we went to a little church in a nearby scenic town, I was taken with the fresh wildflowers contrasting nicely with ancient monuments.

This book identifies so, so many of the churchyards by famous person, occurrence or unique gravestones.

Bewcastle is very close to Carlisle and we hiked there to see the famous Bewcastle Cross at St. Cuthbert's. It is over 1,300 years old and has remarkable carvings covering all four of its 14 1/2 feet height.

The whole industry and the practices of the English dealing with the dead are explored in detail. Fascinating.

Two epitaphs really strike me:

"Poor Marth Snell, her's gone away,
Her would if her could, but her couldn't stay.
Her had two bad legs and a baddish cough,
But her legs it was that carried her off."

And this is a thinker:

Shall . . . weee . . . all . . . . die?
Weee . . . shall . . . die . . . all.
All . . . . . die . . . shall . . . weee?
Die . . . . all . . . . weee . . . shall.

You can read the sentences vertically or horizontally. It's from a brass plaque from 1708 to Hannibal Bassett at Mawgan.
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