Monday, November 17, 2014

city of the dead

Yes, I did go visit a cemetery while I was on holiday in Scotland in August. and in a perfect case of serendipity, a guided tour was happening the day I arrived. it was free, but you needed to register and my cousin and her husband and I managed to reserve spaces. it wasn't a very big group, not even the limit of 25 people (the guided walks in our cemeteries tend to be extremely popular with dozens of people, but maybe it being a Bank Holiday weekend had something to do with it) and by the end of the over 3 hour (!!) walk, only four us were still with the group leaders - yes, us three plus one other hardy soul! but we all found it well worth the time. 
after crossing the Bridge of Sighs, we did have to climb up a rather steeply terraced hill... and back down again

The Adjoining Bridge 
was erected by 
The Merchants House of Glasgow
to afford a proper entrance to their new cemetery continuing
convenient access to the grounds with suitable decoration to the 
venerable cathedral & surrounding scenery to unite the tombs of many generations
who have gone before with the resting places destined for generations yet
unborn where the ahes of all shall repose until the resurrection of the just when that  which
is born a natural body shall be raised a spiritual body when this corruptible must put
on incorruption when this mortal must put on immortality when death is swallowed up in victory.

Unfortunately, the walk started at about 6pm and by then, the sun was intensely determined to create long shadows, making it difficult to get good photos. plus, because these were all unfamiliar names to me, I wanted to pay attention and not wander off as I usually am wont to do. so, fewer photos than I usually take.
The cemetery opened in 1833 as the first interdenominational garden cemetery in the city. though, the year before, a small Jewish burial ground was established in the north west corner (it would be declared 'full' by 1851 - it is very small) It is now a closed cemetery - no more burials are allowed. There are over 50,000 people resting here, but only about 3,500 monuments have been put up. 

climb up the walkways and you get the bonus of great panoramic views over the city. here, we are looking out towards the Cathedral and Royal Infirmary
this is to the south                and east

considering all the space, these souls are rather tightly packed in
eventually we get to the highest point where the statue of John Knox has stood on this high column since before the cemetery was built
and then we descend back towards the cathedral square 
and through the gates to the land of the living

sharing this walk with Monday Walks at Restless Jo


  1. I did a very similar walk up Calton Hill in Edinburgh last year. Fascinating places, aren't they? Many thanks for sharing. :)

    Did you sort your link to Twitter? It's fairly straightforward. It would have to be if I can use it :)

    1. I think I could seriously do a cemetery tour, rather like a pub crawl through various cities!
      Couldn't figure out the twitter link option. I think it is easier on Wordpress than Blogger.

  2. What a fabulous place to visit....I'm guessing you found some pretty interesting stones to photograph.

    1. there were some great looking stones, but the deep, elongated shadows made it difficult to photograph without at least trying to adjust the settings - and I wasn't with the most patient of people.

  3. Oh, I have long wanted to go there! Thanks so much for your wonderful write-up and photos.


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