Sunday, November 23, 2008

50th Post- My favorite stone so far

Today was sunny and a little warmer than it has been, so my husband and I set out to find some cemeteries and take some photos.

The day was cut short by a terrible Ohio Valley sinus headache, but not before we captured some fantastic stones with symbols we'd never come across before. More posts will follow, as we found a mother lode of ornate gravestones at Stonelick Township's Rapp Cemetery, but I wanted to celebrate my 50th post with this particular one.

According to Beth over at Grave Addiction, whose site I visit often, this scene of Father Time and a weeping virgin is chock-full of interesting symbols. She writes:
[This is a] Masonic carving. The carving consists of a weeping virgin holding a sprig of acacia in one hand, and an urn in the other hand. A broken column is in front of her. Father Time is behind her, attempting to untangle the ringlets of her hair. It symbolizes that time, patience, and perseverance will accomplish all things.

To further elaborate, the sprig of acacia is a commonly used Masonic symbol of purity and resurrection. It also has significance in funerary practice as it represents immortality and resurrection. In addition, incense is made from certain parts of the tree and there is speculation that it was an acacia tree that appeared in the Christian Bible as the burning bush.

A broken column represents a life which has ended. An urn can represent the soul. An hourglass representing the passage of time appears beside the male figure's foot. Of course, the Masonic level and compass appears below this scene, further proof connecting this carving to the secret society.

What strikes me most about this stone is the menacing look of Father Time. I noticed the sickle and assumed that's who it was, but at first glance it seemed to sinister, almost devil-like. His pointed ears and angry eyes added to this effect.

If you are ever out for a drive in Clermont County's Stonelick Township, I highly recommend swinging by this cemetery. Check out this site for detailed location.