Travel, Gardens, Food, Photography, Books, Shoes

Posts tagged ‘Cemeteries’

Thursday Doors: Père LaChaise Cemetery, Paris, France

Père LaChaise Cemetery

Père LaChaise Cemetery

Today, I thought I would do something different for Thursday Doors. This is a video I made of Père LaChaise Cemetery in Paris, France! Lots of doors here!

The cemetery is named after Father Francois de la Chaise, (1624-1709) the confessor to Louis XIV, who lived in the Jesuit house that was on the property at one time.  The sight opened as a cemetery on May 21, 1804 with the burial of a five year old child. That first year only thirteen people were buried here because it was felt the cemetery was too far from Paris. Also, Catholics would not be buried here because the Catholic Church had not blessed it. Later in 1804, with great fanfare, the decision was made to transfer the remains of Jean de La Fontaine (poet) and Molière (actor/writer), seen as rock stars in their day, to the cemetery.  Again in 1817, the purported remains of Abélard (philosopher) and Héloise d’Argenteuil (his lover) were also transferred with their monument’s canopy made from fragments of an abbey. This strategy led to the desired results: people were determined to be buried among the famous citizens.  The famous and wealthy people buried here would try to out do each other, even in death, with beautiful burial chambers, most the size of a phone booth, but some very extravagant.  Père Lachaise was expanded five times and today over one million bodies are buried here in 110 acres. Many, many more are in the columbarium, which holds the remains of those who have requested cremation.

Today, strict rules apply to be buried in the cemetery.  To be buried here one must have died in Paris or lived there. Also there are 50, 30 and 10 year leases on the burial sites. After the lease is up the remains are removed and placed in Aux Morts, (to the Dead) an ossuary, similar to the famous catacomb sights.  When the ossuary is full, the bones are cremated and then returned to the sight. I wanted to see the graves of Jim Morrison, Edith Piaf, and Oscar Wilde. A roster of all the famous people buried here can be found on the internet. I would suggest taking a map of the cemetery with you or download the Maplet of Père Lachaise Cemetery on your IPhone as we had. After all there are 110 acres to explore and it is very steep and uneven with forest like ledges in some areas. Also note, that at 4pm in the winter, bell ringers ringing old fashioned school bells, walk the cemetery to announce that the cemetery closes at 5pm. You do not want to be locked in the cemetery left to scale a 20 foot gate!  I hope you enjoy the video!

This is just one of many photos in the Thursday Door Collection featured by Norm2.0!   Won’t you join in or take a peak at all the doors?

The Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

The Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

The Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

Part 2,  of the “My Best Tip of Istanbul, Turkey” post continues. We are walking  from Pierre Loti Hill down through the Eyüp Cemetery to the boat docked at the pier, that will take us around the Golden Horn. Our tour guide from the Blue Brothers Tours tells us interesting facts and stories about the cemetery and the grave markers.  This is what I learned.

The Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

The Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

The Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

The Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

The Eyüp Cemetery is the most sacred cemetery in Istanbul. The mosque was erected by Mehmet the Conqueror, over the tomb of Halid bin Zeyd Ebu Eyyüp, known as Sultan Eyüp, the standard bearer for the prophet Mohammed, also the last survivor of his inner circle of trusted friends.  Sultan Eyüp, while serving as a commander of the Arab forces during the siege of 688 to 659 was killed and buried on the outskirts of Istanbul. One of the conditions of peace, after the Arab siege, was that the tomb of Eyüp be preserved. A little village of tombs blossomed on the site by those seeking Sultan Eyüp’s intervention in the hereafter, and it is still considered a privilege to be buried in the nearby cemeteries. Today it costs more than $50,000 to be buried here. To most people in Turkey that is equivalent to buying a home.

The Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

The Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

The Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

The Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

The tombstones reveal a lot about the people buried beneath them. The older grave markers, those before 1829, are long narrow markers with tops shaped like a turban for the men. The turban represents a pasha; a high ranking person of the Ottoman Empire or a prominent military man, or the turban of a Dervish order. The green painted turbans represent the burial of an Imam. After 1929, the fez shaped hat replaced the pasha turban on the grave markers. The tombstones shaped like a sword represent a soldier.

The Turbans, Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

The Turbans, Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

The Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

Imam, The Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

The Soldier Marker, Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

The Soldier, Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

The older tombstone markings were written in Arabic. After WWI, when the Ottoman Empire was divided into several new states, and following the Turkish War of Independence, (1919-1922) Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, established the Republic of Turkey, with himself as its first president. The Arabic language was out and the Turkish language was designated the official language. This caused a great deal of confusion in Turkey because for several generations the older people spoke Arabic while the children learned Turkish in schools.

For women, the top of the grave marker can be a tiara, noting a princess, or a head-dress represented by flowers, most often the rose. The number of roses depicts how many children the woman had and the opened rose means the child was still living at the time of her death and if the rose is closed, a child has preceded her in death.

A Woman's Marker, Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

A Woman’s Marker, Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

At one spot in the cemetery are two markers for two women separated my an empty hole between them. The guide tells the story of two wives of one man. Muslims are allowed four wives. Well in this situation there was the older wife and the much younger wife and all the headaches that could possibly be created between the two women. One day the women decided to end the bickering and their unhappiness by killing the husband. The two women were hung for their crime, and buried in the cemetery plots that their husband had provided for them. However, since it is shameful in Muslim culture to be killed by a woman, the husband was not allowed to be buried there, hence the hole.

Two Women, No Man, Eyüp Cemetery, Isatnbul, Turkey

Two Women, No Man, Eyüp Cemetery, Isatnbul, Turkey

 Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

Eyüp Cemetery, Istanbul, Turkey

Also, it is popular to have written messages from the deceased placed on the tombstone. Here are some that have been translated.

Stopping his ears with his fingers Judge Mehmut died off from the beautiful world, leaving his wife’s cackling and his mother in law’s gabbing.

O passers by spare me your prayers, but please don’t steal my tombstone.

I could have died as well without a doctor than with that quack that my friends set upon me.

Enjoy!  We are now approaching the boat! Stay tuned for more!

Père Lachaise Cemetery

Père LaChaise Cemetery

Père LaChaise Cemetery

I have to rest my knee today after yesterday’s shopping spree. (See previous posts) When I mentioned to the perfumer that I wanted to go to Père LaChaise Cemetery, he warned me it was not very level and down right steep in some areas. So today Baby Bear and Papa Bear are off to see one of the famous cemeteries of the world without me!

The cemetery is named after Father Francois de la Chaise, (1624-1709) the confessor to Louis XIV, who lived in the Jesuit house that was on the property at one time.  The sight opened as a cemetery on May 21, 1804 with the burial of a five year old child. That first year only thirteen people were buried here because it was felt the cemetery was too far from Paris. Also, Catholics would not be buried here because the Catholic Church had not blessed it. Later in 1804, with great fanfare, the decision was made to transfer the remains of Jean de La Fontaine (poet) and Molière (actor/writer), seen as rock stars in their day, to the cemetery.  Again in 1817, the purported remains of Abélard (philosopher) and Héloise d’Argenteuil (his lover) were also transferred with their monument’s canopy made from fragments of an abbey. This strategy led to the desired results: people were determined to be buried among the famous citizens.  The famous and wealthy people buried here would try to out do each other, even in death, with beautiful burial chambers, most the size of a phone booth, but some very extravagant.  Père Lachaise was expanded five times and today over one million bodies are buried here in 110 acres. Many, many more are in the columbarium, which holds the remains of those who have requested cremation.

Today, strict rules apply to be buried in the cemetery.  To be buried here one must have died in Paris or lived there. Also there are 50, 30 and 10 year leases on the burial sites. After the lease is up the remains are removed and placed in Aux Morts, (to the Dead) an ossuary, similar to the famous catacomb sights.  When the ossuary is full, the bones are cremated and then returned to the sight. I wanted to see the graves of Jim Morrison, Edith Piaf, and Oscar Wilde. A roster of all the famous people buried here can be found on the internet. I would suggest taking a map of the cemetery with you or download the Maplet of Père Lachaise Cemetery (Maplets App) on your IPhone as we had. After all there are 110 acres to explore and Papa Bear acknowledged it is very steep and uneven with forest like ledges in some areas. Also note, that at 4pm in the winter, bell ringers ringing old fashioned school bells, walk the cemetery to announce that the cemetery closes at 5pm. You do not want to be locked in the cemetery left to scale a 20 foot gate!  I hope you enjoy the video!

Grow Write Repeat

Writing lifts me up.

Passport Overused

Showing the beauty of this world through the people, places and culture

Reclaiming Paradise

Tales from an organic gardener

Gardening My Way

The Occasional Gardener

Something to Ponder About

Lifestyle, Photography and Traditional Art

The Belmont Rooster

A Blog About Gardening Plus A Little More

P.A. Moed

Creative Exploration in Words and Pictures

Notes From the Hinterland

A blog about nature, home, community, books, writing, the environment, food, and rural life.

Zouxzoux

*Poetry*Prose*Photography*

Discovering Belgium

On foot or by bike through the Kingdom!

And Anyways...

Author, Baker, Sunrise Chaser

Behind the Scenery

Grateful for the present moment

Natalie the Explorer

Taking steps to live a healthy and enriched life

Leya

To See a World in a Grain of Sand...

Back Road Journal

Little treasures discovered while exploring the back roads of life

Potted Up

A twenty-something year old and her plants.

Photos by Jez

Taking the camera for a walk!!!

Travels in Finland and abroad

Discover Finland’s hidden gems

Light Motifs II

creating order out of chaos, and vice versa

%d bloggers like this: