Wednesday, 12 December 2007

Silent Stars

A walk around my local churchyard on a frosty but bright morning revealed this slate gravestone. Of course in the early nineteenth century nobody would have thought twice about a Richard Burton marrying an Elizabeth, but from our 'modern' perspective the coupling is always going to grab attention. Old churchyards are happy (yes, happy) hunting grounds if you're interested in lettering and the decorative arts. In my local it's the Swithland blue slate ones that have survived the best, those carved from nearby limestone gradually becoming worn smooth by westerly rains. I go on about them in More from Unmitigated England, now stacked-up in your local bookshop. Oh, and I nearly forgot. In a village churchyard just down the road there's a Harry Potter. I won't say where it is in case coach loads of Potter Addicts turn up like others do to the Rosslyn Chapel to see if they can find the Da Vinci Code in the vestry.

7 comments:

Toby Savage said...

Errrr. That's assuming 'loads' of Harry Potter fans read your blog Peter, my old china. I'll keep shtum if you do.

Peter Ashley said...

Toby, it only takes one Potter Addict to read it. They're all interconnected by threads of ectoplasm or something and before you know it they'll all be playing Quiditch on the Crown car park.

Diplomat said...

Absolutely wrong I'm afraid - clearly the headstone could simply have been in memory of Elisabeth Burton, but - oh no - let's indulge in a little predictive name dropping - Im sorry but this sort of "celebrity" exposure seeking was just as pants then as it is today.

alastair fox said...

Quiditch? Magwitch more like. xx

Toby Savage said...

Santa! Where are you? It's been ages and we await the next instalment......

Ben Ashley said...

Santa's PC went somewhat south, hence the lack of an update!

Peter Ashley said...

Back now, but only just. Is that my eldest son Benjamin? Keep him away from Cindy.