Cemetery Art

Walking through your local cemetery is always a peaceful way to spend time. Even if there are people around, they are always so reverently quiet. But as you walk along, you might notice the standards of a tombstone:

name of deceased
date of birth and death
an epitaph

What often gets overlooked, though, are the symbols which are also typically found on a person’s tombstone. I decided to search for a listing of the meanings of various symbols found on a tombstone and share them with you so that next time you find yourself in a cemetary or graveyard and notice these symbols, you’ll be a little more enlightened about their meanings.

  • anchor/ship – hope or seafaring profession
  • arrows – mortality
  • broken column – early death, grief, loss of the head of the family
  • caterpillar – time or metamorphosis
  • column – noble life
  • dove  –  innocence, gentleness, affection, purity
  • eye – humility
  • frog – worldly pleasure, sin
  • grim reaper – inevitibility of death
  • handshakes – farewell
  • orb – faith
  • rope circle – eternity
  • shepherd’s crook – charity
  • sun setting – death
  • winged effigies – flight of the soul

The full list from which these were taken can be found at this website.


3 thoughts on “Cemetery Art

  1. That was extremely interesting. It’s blogs like this that make all this wordpress stuff worthwhile. Thanks.


  2. aka… the symbols and artwork that I found are pretty universal, but each cemetery will add its own flavour to the standards.


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