Mausoleum Plans

Aug 24, 2022 | House Plans

Gravestones, Tombstones, Headstones, Monuments, Statues, Mausolea

:

For The Beautiful Home’s “Houses of Eternity” edition, a review of funerary art from the gravestone to the mausoleum, including mausoleum plans and other marker plans, their uses and history.

 

Tower of the Winds Set 1 re

Toer of the Winds, Set 2, Sheet A. M. Curtis, des.

Tower of the Winds Set 2 re

Tower of the Winds, Set 2, Sheet B. M. Curtis, des.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*   *   *

 

Gravestones

 

Liberty Markers re

Liberty Marker, The National Liberty Memorial. M. Curtis, des.

 

The English gravestone (first instance, circa 1200) is a slab horizontally laid above an inground grave.  Engraved atop the stone, the remembered name, the dates of life, and a comment in verse or in prose.  Recently, a marker contiguous with a grave, the diminutive flatstone (parallel to head or foot), has mostly replaced the gravestone.

 

*   *   *

 

Tombstones

 

Daisy Tombstone. M.Curtis des re

Daisy Tombstone. M. Curtis, des.

 

Tombstone, from the Greek tymbos, “burial mound”, enters the English language circa 1560.  At that time, coffins were composed of stone, and the tombstone was the visible stone-lid level with the ground, as in the illustration (above).

 

*   *   *

 

Headstones

 

Vertical Monuments. M.Curtis des.jpg color re

Vertical Headstones. M. Curtis, des.

 

 

Lotus Memorial drawing color

Lotus Headstone. M. Curtis, des.

Headstone, synonymous with “cornerstone”, describes a stone vertically set at the corner of a building, or as here, the corner of a tomb.  As with the cornerstone, the tombstone notes the beginning and end dates of construction, the builder and the architect’s name: id est, “the construction dates = the life”; “the builder = the person”; “the architect = God”.

A headstone might include a symbol: the willow for “mourning”, lily for “resurrection”, clasped hands for “matrimony”, laurel for “military distinction”, the various Christian crosses, Latin, Greek, Celtic, the various stars for Judaism, wicca, et cetera.  And then, different culture, different associations: the lotus for Catholics and Coptic’s represents “resurrection and rebirth”, for Buddhists and Hindu’s “purity and enlightenment”.

Around the time of our War for Independence, the headstone became synonymous with “grave-marker”.

An empty burial might have a votive stone, as mentioned in Emerson’s “Concord Hymn”, On this green bank, by this soft stream, / We set today a votive stone; / That memory may their deed redeem, / When, like our sires, our sons are gone, as found at The Old North Bridge, Concord.

 

*   *   *

 

Monuments

 

Monument to a Hero re

Monument to a Hero. M. Curtis, des.

 

 

Reagan Memorial drawing 1

Reagan Memorial. M. Curtis, des.

A monument is architecture abstracted, metaphoric.  A monument is a building without a room, without a tomb.  A monument gives the appearance of a pedestal or a base, though it is a thing complete in itself, the architectural embodiment of a person.

Monuments are most often tripartite, alike a person, a bottom, middle, top, with two sides, front and back.  The base is the foot, solid planted upon the ground.  The shaft is the body, architecturally solid, featuring a name, dates, and comment set in a frame.  The cap is the head, metaphor of the man and the life.  A broken column represents a life cut short; the draped ash urn represents the soul veiled between life and death; the obelisk is the light ray (Ra) that pierces the clouds; and the flame and the globe and the pyramid, et cetera, are each obvious in reference.

Sometimes, a monument is a solid architectural block, a portrait in building, an architectural style reminiscent of man, her life, his accomplishment.

And there is the sarcophagus with its plain or ornate pictured stories, as in the Roman and the Greek styles, or the anthropoid (mummy case), as in the Egyptian and the Greek styles.

 

*   *   *

 

Statues

 

Hannah

Hannah Statue. Ashes interred within. M. Curtis, des.

 

 

Bullet Memorial

Bullet Sentinel. M. Curtis, des.

The statue might be a portrait, though portrait statues are most often reserved for civic parks and civic buildings.  Most often, the funerary statue is a spirit bodied, as in an angel, a bodhisattva, the personifications of Mourning, Silence, Heaven, and those recently conceived banalities, rope-skipping children, flower-picking children, ball-tossing children, and figurations of political opinion.

Too, there is the statued person lying in state; the grasping apparition; the sphinx; the watchful, dutiful canine, a fellow mortal creature, as in Hannah (above) or in Alexander’s Bucephalas, stead of his youth and partner in war.  Often, a portrait in relief is included on a headstone, or atop a headstone in a bust of metal or of stone, as in a herm.

Best funerary statues transcend place and time and scene.

 

*   *   *

 

Mausolea

 

Mousoleum Plans

Various multi crypt mausolea. M. Curtis, des.

 

 

Mausoleum Plan

Mausoleum for a Gentleman, single crypt. M. Curtis, des.

The word “mausoleum” derives from the tomb building of the Hellenistic king, Mausolus (ruled Caria, 377-353 BC).  A mausoleum is a burial chamber, sometimes grand, as in the Taj Mahal, sometimes quaint, as at your neighborhood cemetery.  A mausoleum might be sealed or might have a door and a stained-glass window, as in a chapel.  A mausoleum might, in fact, serve as chapel, a reception room where those in life and those passed from life meet and speak.  Common types include the Greek or Roman temple, the Gothic chapel, the pyramid, and other forms both Classive and exotic.

One person or many persons might be entombed within a mausoleum’s sarcophagi or niches.  A mausoleum might also double as columbarium with niches for urned ashes arranged to punctuate the wall.

An empty mausoleum is, by definition, a cenotaph.

 

*   *   *

 

Mausoleum Plan, elevation entrance

Neo Grec Monument. M. Curtis, des.

Other funerary architecture includes the exedra and the colonnade.  The exedra is a semicircular room, often raised.  A colonnade might be square or curved; its columns define a sacred precinct.

I think memorial benches a pedestrian insult, what with planting a keester upon a person’s memory, and memorial stone paths the worst, walking with muddy feet upon a person’s life and dignity.  Sure, cemeteries need space to continue in business.  Even so, the columbarium, the crypt, the catacomb are the preferred option.

Lately, as mentioned in The Beautiful Home’s ten-minute history feature, “Mausoleum“, there has been a vouge in human composting, a supercilious recycling quite different from the sacramental funeral pyre and the ashes of a sacred urn.

 

*   *   *

 

Featured image: Three Multi Crypt Mausolea, M. Curtis, des.

 

Oak Hill Cemetary edited 1

Urns for a Columbarium. M. Curtis, des.

 

*   *   *

Mini House, Lake Lure
Cozy House

Cozy House

  The Cozy House : You will remember Walden Pond near Concord, “the shot heard round the world,” et cetera.  You will recall the disagreeable recluse, Henry David Thoreau, who composed Walden: or Life in the Woods, a book that recounts a simple, retiring life...

Eppes House Appomattox Plantation Petersburg Virginia. credit EWY Media
The Tidewater House

The Tidewater House

  : The Tidewater House Tradition ... Drive along the backroads of tobacco country and you will see untended fields, collapsed tobacco barns, and centuries of hard-used Tidewater houses, some occupied and some standing against time with just a rusting memory...

Temple of Canova Roman Catholic Canova architect Giuseppe Segusini assisting Veneto Italy 1830. credit Elleon
American Sacred Architecture

American Sacred Architecture

.. American Sacred Architecture: Houses of God : At our nation’s center, an obelisk: Named in memory of our first president, George Washington, the Washington Monument stands upon highest ground that it might touch the first and last light of the Sun’s day, Ra’s...

Miami en Condado San Juan Puerto Rico 2
Art Deco House

Art Deco House

... The Art Deco House: Prologue to Epilogue : Anthropology, archaeology, the assembling, the cataloging, the visual encyclopedias of every culture’s everything, their patterns, their statuary, their furniture, their temples and teapots were pictured in...

McKim Mead White Vanderbilt Mansion Hyde Park New York. credit NPS 2
Renaissance Revival House

Renaissance Revival House

... Humanism and the Renaissance Revival House : You remember Socrates’ rival, Protagoras, the able sophist who observed that “Man is the measure of all things.”  Yes, if we measure by arms-length with manmade tools.  Even so, there is something hopeful, something...

Storybook Cottage. credit Littleny Stock
Storybook Houses

Storybook Houses

... Storybook Houses : Look!  Witches, giants, dwarfs, elves, fearies, unicorns, the enchantments and romance of make-believe live forever in the universe of imagination.  Mere suggestion and you picture witches, giants, dwarfs so real that you can draw them as...

American Carpenter Gothic
American Carpenter Gothic

American Carpenter Gothic

... Grant Wood's American Carpenter Gothic : An odd etymology: Grant Wood painted into the national memory a Carpenter Gothic house, the Dibble House, Eldon, Iowa.  In the picture, a pitchfork wielding father, his buttoned-down daughter, a barn, a church steeple, a...

2021 Architectural Prints, Jeffersonian
Architectural Prints

Architectural Prints

  The Beautiful Home 2021 Architectural Prints Collection   The Beautiful Home’s 2021 Architectural Prints Collection will be available to collectors, May 1, 2024.  The collection includes Georgian, Greek Revival, Mid-Century Modern, and Jeffersonian...

Hunter Huffman 1 sm
Introducing Hunter Huffman

Introducing Hunter Huffman

: Hunter Huffman   New to The Beautiful Home, Hunter Huffman, a dedicated advocate for sustainable community growth, a champion of classical architecture. With a diverse background spanning industries such as construction, architecture, and urban planning,...

beautiful home book
The Beautiful Home Book

The Beautiful Home Book

The Beautiful Home Book : In 1988 I began a seven-volume treatise on American domestic architecture because I intended not to draw plumbing plans in a desk at the office of some fashionable Modernist.  As it happened, 1988 was a year when we Classives were...

Cozy Houses, Chateauesque, The Beautiful Home
Cozy Houses

Cozy Houses

... Cozy Houses : Yes, rents are up.  Most Americans pay nearly half their income to be dry and warm.  Yes, houses are growing larger, more expensive, farther from city convenience and close community.  Yes, new houses are rickety, uglier than ever they have been. ...

Miny House Bora Bora
The Cozy Home

The Cozy Home

...  Cozy Home : The cottage house, the tiny house, the bungalow, the shotgun house, the summerhouse are all cozy homes, vernacular houses of no specific style but of many a particular period.  Among my favorites, the summerhouses of Switzerland and Sweeden, and of...

George Washington architect west facade
George Washington Architect

George Washington Architect

... George Washington, Architect : George Washington is not a well-known architect, he is better known as president, general, farmer, and yet his architecture is more influential than that of Le Corbusier and F.L. Wright.  Yes, you should laugh, because true.  In...

Cracker Barrel, Vanishing America
Vanishing America

Vanishing America

... Vanishing America : Dan, a man in his early 70s, is selling his Tidewater house to developers who intend a McMansion on his large corner lot in suburban Washington, DC.  Dan is reluctant to discuss the sale for fear that publicity will anger the new corporate...

Tidewater House Plan, color elevation
Tidewater House Plan

Tidewater House Plan

... TIDEWATER HOUSE PLAN INTRODUCTION : Drive along the backroads of tobacco country and you will see untended fields, collapsed tobacco barns, and centuries of hard-used Tidewater houses, some occupied and some standing against time with just a rusting memory to...

Interior of the Bruton Parish Church established 1674 Willamsburg Virginia. crtedit Steve Heap
Tidewater Christmas

Tidewater Christmas

... Tidewater Christmas Traditions   : Once upon a time, Christ was remembered at Christmas, as in the Tidewater where Christmas was the summit of Advent, season of expectation, reflection, penitence in preparation for the birth of Christ.  Advent, “the approach,”...

For your delight, please join our mailing list to receive weekly issues of our eZine

You have Successfully Subscribed!