I know this has been covered in a post in the past, but I thought it be a good one to touch on again as so many of us visit graveyards and cemeteries, some of which may not be so well-kept. This graphic might help you to know what people looked to for meaning when we die.
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
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.