Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Chiselled in Stone


St John's Hill
As you go up St John's Hill in Shrewsbury, turn left through the wrought iron gate at the top. This is where St Chad's is and the church yard is at the back. There aren't any modern graves there now, most of them date back to the early 1800's. The pictures I've taken are at various times  through the seasons. 
You might think that walking around a church yard looking at grave stones is a bit morbid, but I don't think so. Death is an inevitable part of life. It is. Like they say, the only two certainties in this life are dying and paying tax. And me? I just find a sense of peace there. When I go into Shrewsbury, if there's time, I never get tired of walking the narrow stone paths. And they even provide a bench by the cobbled circle for you to sit and ponder it all as long as you want to.

St Chad's Churchyard



At the top end, nearest to the Quarry gardens is a cobbled circle. I would imagine there is something beneath it - but it doesn't say what. Been there for quite a while.
The one above is a crypt in cast iron, beautifully engraved. Indication that in those times that they were quite a well-to-do family in the watch making business, so it says a bit higher up - but look at the ages - 25 yrs, 41, 26 - how did they meet their deaths so young? Was it through illness or accident or just sheer hard work. We won't know.
Mary Eccleston
Then there was Mary Eccleston - she was only fifteen when she died in 1827 and other infant children died with her. It happened on New Year's Eve. Was there an accident, epidemic? I've never been able to find out any more about her. There's almost a book in there.



Fungi at the base of the yew tree



One of my favourite things to look at was, a winter storm a few years back had upended one of the yew trees. The tree surgeons who dealt with it, carved their names where they'd lopped the trunk across.  You'd never know now because ivy has grown all over it. But they are there, underneath it, for posterity.



20 comments:

  1. Don't know - I avoid it like the plague.

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  2. Love the new header photo Molly. I so enjoy these walking tours you take us on; this spot has loads of charm. I like strolling around graveyards too. Some are truly beautiful, like St. Chads. I wonder too about the people - how they lived, how they died. I suspect many died so young due to illness. I hope you're enjoying autumn. the weather has most definitely changed and I've turned the thermostat up a bit at night. It's nippy.
    happy week to you Molly.

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    1. Each life has a story. It rained all day here today. We have a solid fuel Rayburn which I've lit the last few days - not had it going for 4 years, but now the oil prices are through the roof, having to go on a log hunt again. Love your company. Have a good week too.

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  3. So many questions pop up when looking at headstones. Joe and I love to walk in grave yards. We find them fascinating. Vaccinations have helped infant and child mortality rates, thankfully, for our time.

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    1. One of the good things about modern living. Olive, I hope you are feeling better. You've been through a rough old time yourself. Take care xxx

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  4. If on your rambles you find a grave with a headstone and footstone--like Fanny Robbins in Far from the Madding Crowd--I would love to see a picture! Your tours are wonderful.

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    1. Thank you - I'll keep a look out

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  5. I love wandering in cemeteries.....one of my favourite things to do. You have taken some lovely photos here.

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  6. Lovely photos - I like walking in cemeteries as well.

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  7. I,also, love to visit old cemeteries. Living around a famous revolutionary site, graveyards that date back to the mid 18th century are common, although compared to European history,that may seem almost modern.

    Love your header picture.

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    1. Delores, Sue and Arleen - thank you

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  8. lovely photos. I love old graveyards and churchs. You reminded me I have a smashing book about pebble mosaics. I've not made one yet, but I live in hope that I will create a masterpiece one of these days! :-D

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    1. Kath, you are brilliant at everything to do with craft. I love your work - that masterpiece is not too far away.

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  9. Nothing wrong with cemeteries, the homes of the dead are often much more interesting than elsewhere.

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    1. And you get nice quiet neighbours too.

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  10. I enjoy a graveyard too...nothing creepy about them to me. I feel only good vibes.

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  11. As you read the inscriptions, especially on the old ones, it's like having a little snapshot of someone's life - Chania - I feel good vibes too.

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  12. It 's a long time since I wandered round Shrewsbury on foot, Molly, and I've never been to Saint Chad's churchyard, but your post makes me want to. I too find gravestones fascinating and in our local churchyard there's one that tells the sad tale of a family which lost 3 small children inside a month - obviously an epidemic. Yet just down the path is someone who lived into her nineties, all in the C19th.

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  13. I love walking round graveyards too, especially old overgrown ones.

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