Thursday, 17 January 2013

Undercliffe Cemetary

It feels like I've been hibernating this winter, usually the cold air and darkening nights are enticing for a wyrd Englander like myself but even in this relatively mild weather I have not felt up to much exploring. I didn't expect the end of the world but it did happen in a small way. On the low turn of the seasons we feel the grind of the wheel but it is good to know the wheel still turns and midsummer shall hopefully bring new joy.

However things have improved and I ventured out to Bradford a week ago to explore Undercliffe again, as Briony had recalled the inscription of an unusual grave we saw there some years ago. We walked along the promenade of the necropolis first though, as who can resist a look at the elaborate grandeur, graves such as the famous Illingworth columbarium:

Several people have noticed the resemblance to the Temple works in Leeds, both Illingworth and Marshall (who built the temple works) owned flax mills. Egyptology was in vogue through the 1800s, Marshall was a member of the Leeds Philosophical society who recovered Nesyamun, the mummy on display today at the Leeds Museum, and the depiction of flax spinning on the ancient Egyptian tombs inspired the mill owners to weave the stylistic influences of pagan times into their lives.

It is unsurprising that this Victorian spectacle of wealth is full of masonic imagery, it seems that every other monument has some nod to an alliance.

The grave we were seeking is a Celtic cross, low compared to all the others around it. It bears the remains of an inscription:

"Out of shadows and phantasms into the truth"

The search for truth has yet to bring us out of the cave, for the grave has no name but bears unusual symbols, a pentagram, a star of david, a swastika and the last symbol, at the foot of the monument, which we were unable to identify.

If any one has any information about the symbol at the foot of the grave, I would greatly appreciate some enlightenment!

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