Memento mori – remember that you have to die. A sentiment that just fits right in with the dour Scots sense of mortality.
Typically this is represented by a skull, cross bones and an hourglass. Sometimes a spade will also be represented on the headstone.
There is something kind of unique about these headstones usually around the 1700s, where the tradesmen were buried with the tools of their trade proudly emblazoned on their headstones; butchers, glovers, masons, carpenters have their own set of symbols on their headstones.
The last picture contains a set square (for checking if something is at right-angles) a pair of dividers (for marking out a distance) and two other tools that I could not quite make out.
This one is sparse in details, one could surmise that the surviving relatives knew who was interred so why bother with fancy script.
HERE.LYES.THE.CORPS.OF.ANNMONRO (Here lies the corpse of Ann Munro)
Cross bones, hour glass and two coffins.
There was a fashion for large recumbent headstones in a table like fashion. Some have sparse details, others have a whole family history. This one reminds me of the opening credits to Star Wars.
Little angels are sometimes a sign that folk never reached their allotted three score years and ten. A lot of the memorials are for children who never reached their first ten years of age. This is in the “modern” part of the burial ground.
This is part of the memorial stone to Lt. William Keay Falconer, Killed, aged 20, in action near Ypres 24 Apr 1915. Interred on the field of battle near where he fell…his father was the Sheriff and County Clerk of Kinross-shire. He is buried in the Seaforth Cemetery, Cheddar Villa, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Typically one of many local lads that never came home
The front panel carries the inscription, “Robert Burns-Begg FSA Grandnephew of the poet Burns, Sheriff Clerk of Kinross-shire. Born at the School House Kinross 1st May 1833, died at The Bield Kinross, 19 August 1900.”
The bronze side panel carries the inscription, “This memorial was erected by public subscription as a testimony to his personal worth and varied accomplishments and to his many public services. Much devoted to antiquarian research he took the deepest interest in Loch Leven and its surroundings and was the author of The Secrets of my Prison House A History of Loch Leven Castle, The Loch Leven Angler etc.”
Some headstones are works of art in themselves, the detail carved onto the stone to simulate the bark of a tree is striking.
The latter day lairs became a lot more grandiose, this one has a cracking view of the castle
A sign of the times, the watch house, where men were paid to watch over the graveyard as a deterrent to grave robbers.
So that’s it, a gentle stroll around the old parish burial ground at Kinross and another episode in the Wee Jaggy bits o’ History and there’s one thing for sure…