Ruth Carter gravestone, The Granary, Boston 1697/8
At Grave Images we are aware of the tremendously diverse, rich and unique gravestone carving tradition that evolved in New England, and basically thrived as long as stones were carved by hand. We know that this tradition includes wonderful carvings of urns, willow trees, flowers and other plants and birds to name just a few of the many things that were carved into old New England gravestones. We know this, but our dark hearts really love these very early, incredibly graphic depictions of Death that were carved into gravestones.
In the symbolic language of the time, the presence of winged skulls or skeletons represented the triumph of death over life - in this case there seems to be a positive glee in the final victory of death as the skeletons appear to be sharing a joke.