Wednesday, September 10, 2008

101 Ways, Part 25: Rose Upon the Horizon of Perfect Endless Day

For a brief intro to the "101 Ways to Say 'Died'" series, click here

As the wife of the town's most influential minister, John Barnard, Anna Barnard of Marblehead, MA was an important person in her community. Her elaborate gravestone stands at the crest of Old Burial Hill, near the Susanna Jayne stone.
OMINEM crede Diem tibi diluxisse
Sacred to the Memory of the pious
The worthy & examplary
Consort of the late Venerable
Who for many years was the
faithful Pastor of the first
Church of Christ,
in Marblehead.
In all the Virtues of a Life of Faith
and Holiness,
She shone below, respected and belov'd;
Until matur'd for higher Spheres.
She set to Earth, rever'd & lamented;
But rose upon the Horizon of perfect
endless day on the 24th of August 1774: AEt. 78.
The holy Triumph of her soul,
Did Death itself out-brave.
Left dull mortality behind
And flew beyond the Grave.
Sun metaphors, while not common, can be found on other New England gravestones (particularly in Rhode Island).

1 comment:

RJO said...

That's a William Park stone for sure -- the five-part flower (among other things) is characteristic of his workshop during this period. He was certainly prolific -- I wonder how many stones he would produce in a given month, and how many apprentices (if any) he may have had working for him.

The verse is particularly lovely -- it could easily pass for Emily Dickinson, in perfect eights-and-sixes.