Field Guide


One large stone next to a tomb refers to the Resurrection. This event is detailed in a number of books in the New Testament, including Luke 24:

1 Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them.
2 And they found the stone rolled away from the sepulchre.
3 And they entered in, and found not the body of the Lord Jesus.

Large stones are attributed with great power and were used to build megalithic shrines like Stonehenge. Perhaps the best-known sacred large stone is the Black Stone of the Kaaba at Mecca. Smaller stones are also associated with power. Scotland has its Stone of Destiny at Scone Palace; the Irish have a Blarney Stone, which they kiss to give them "the gift of gab"; stone chimes are Chinese fertility symbols, and in many cultures, thrown stones are associated with death.

Taken from Stories in Stone: A Field Guide to Cemetery Symbolism and Iconography written and photographed by Douglas Keister, published by Gibbs Smith, Salt Lake City, 2004. This book is a must for every cemetery enthusiast!!!