Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Farewell to Coptic pope

Farewell to Coptic pope

"Dressed in embroidered vestments and a golden mitre, and holding a gold-tipped staff, his body was laid in a coffin before being placed on a ceremonial throne, which was visited by tens of thousands of people over the past few days". For the rest of this story carried in "Malta Today" follow this link"

Wednesday, 21 March 2012


"The evidence is just as indubitable that exhalations arise from the bodies of the dead, which are capable of producing disease and death. Many instances are recorded of the communication of smallpox from the corpse of a person who has died of smallpox. This has happened not only in the dwelling house before interment, but even in the dissecting room. Some years ago five students of anatomy, at the Webb street school, Southwark, who were pursuing their studies under Mr. Grainger, were seized with smallpox, communicated from a on the dissecting table, though it does not appear that all who were attacked were actually  engaged in dissecting this body. One of these young men died. There is reason to believe that emanations from the bodies of persons who have died of other forms of fever have proved injurious and even fatal to individuals who have been much in the same room with the corpse."


Thursday, 8 March 2012

Cult of the dead

Great Cressingham
© Godric Godricson
The study of burials and the origins of burials has sparked interest in Christianity as the embodiment  of a cult of the dead.

Christianity is heavily involved with death and this observation comes from a clear association between the Church as a place of worship and the cemetery as a place of burial. Christians have tried to explain their fixation on death, pain and suffering by pointing to the Resurrection as a sign of triumph over death. However, I recently came across the idea of the Christian God as being 'suicidal' in nature and this deeply disturbing thought brings us back to a cult of death. Is the God of the Christians a suicidal deity that became fixated on blood and sacrifice at an early point and did this obsession with death become the core of Christian doctrine? I have no axe to grind in this matter although I do have an idea and I want to pursue this idea for a while and see what happens.

Early researchers have  often made broad generalisations about the cult of the dead, ancestor worship and the saints as a manifestation of earlier deities although without much study.  Generalisations have been made without any methodology.  This cult of the dead is, however, already evidenced in this blog and the more I submit pictures and 'narrative' the more I become aware of the affinity of Christianity, death and the nature of Christianity as a cult of the dead. Just look at the proximity of the living and the dead in many villages and centres of population.

Audrey Haggard
© Godric Godricson
I’m not suggesting that Christianity is merely another “mystery religion” and I’m not suggesting that Christianity is ‘wrong’ or ‘evil’, instead I am saying that Christianity has an agenda that is not always clear and explained. It is as if  an ancient cult of the dead went on to fuel a world religion rather than a religion forming a cult of the dead. This may be pure semantics although I sense that we  have a cause and effect here.

Paganism has many more links with Christianity than  apologists for Christianity would like to acknowledge and this affinity is stronger within Catholicism than more puritan religion, although the cult of the dead is more evident  in the Evangelical  splinter groups than Christians would like to acknowledge.

It is time to see the cemeteries beside the Church as centres of ancestor worship, history and art rather than just cemeteries. Why else would Christians pay so much time and attention to burying the dead so close to the living. The work of Edwin Chadwick shows how bad the situation was in the 19th Century. In this period the living sank wells for  water beside cemeteries and actually absorbed the dead through drinking water, they sat in pews above the vaults of the dead and they walked past stinking burial grounds to gain access to the Church.  The pollution of the environment by this obsession with death is apparent and evident and shines through Chadwick’s work until the worst excesses were swept away by rational secular Authorities.

Over the next few months I want to return to the idea of Christianity as a cult of the dead and see what happens.

 "Through a glass darkly"

"Through a glass darkly"
© Godric Godricson


Mr- Hutchinson, surgeon, Farringdon-street, was called on Monday morning, the 15th March, 1841, to attend a girl, aged 14, who was labouring under typhus fever of a highly malignant character. This girl was the daughter of a pew-opener in one of the large city churches, situated in the centre of a small burial ground, which had been used for the interment of the dead for centuries, the ground of which was raised much above its natural level, and was saturated with the remains of the bodies. There were vaults beneath the church, in which it was still the custom, as it had long been, to bury the dead. The girl in question had recently returned from the country, where she had been at school. On the preceding Friday, that is, on the fourth day before Mr. Hutchinson saw her, she had assisted her mother during three hours and on the Saturday during one hour, in shaking and cleansing the matting of the aisles and pews of the church. The mother stated, that this work was generally done once in six weeks ; that the dust and effluvia which arose, always had a peculiarly foetid and offensive odour, very unlike the dust which collects in private houses ; that it invariably made her (the mother) ill for at least a day afterwards ; and that it used to make the grandmother of the present patient so unwell, that she was compelled to hire a person to perform this part of her duty. On the afternoon of the same day on which the young person now ill had been engaged in her employment, she was seized with shivering, severe pain in the head, back, and limbs, and other symptoms of  commencing fever. On the following day all these symptoms were aggravated, and in two days afterwards, when Mr. Hutchinson first saw her, malignant fever was fully developed, the skin being burning hot, the tongue dry and covered with a dark brown fur, the thirst urgent, the pain of the head, back, and extremities severe, attended with hurried and oppressed breathing, great restlessness and prostration, anxiety of countenance, low muttering delirium, and a pulse of 130 in the minute. "



"Mr. Elcock, student of anatomy, slightly punctured his finger in opening the body of a hospital patient about twelve o'clock at noon, and in the evening of the same day, finding the wound painful, showed it to Sir Astley Cooper after his surgical lecture. During the night the pain increased to extremity, and symptoms of high constitutional irritation presented themselves on the ensuing morning. No trace of inflammation was apparent beyond a slight redness of the spot at which the wound had been inflicted, which was a mere puncture. In the evening he was visited by Dr. Babington, in conjunction with Dr. Haighton and Sir Astley Cooper; still no local change was to be discovered, but the nervous system was agitated in a most violent and alarming degree, the symptoms nearly resembling the universal excitation of  hydrophobia, and in this state he expired within the period of forty-eight hours from the injury".


Caister Saint Edmund

© Godric Godricson

War dead - Village Memorials

Ashill Parish Memorial
© Godric Godricson

Cornish Celtic Cross

© Godric Godricson

Have a look at Joy Neighbours comments on the Celtic Cross . Joy is a member of the Association of Graveyard Rabbits.

Old churchyards in 1896

Disappearing 1930's Kerb graves
© Godric Godricson
 "That the state of the old churchyards in this country, down to the middle of the nineteenth century, was a public scandal and disgrace, is a remark which applies especially to London, where burial-grounds, packed full of human remains, were still made available for interments on a large scale until 1850 or later. The fact was the more discreditable in contrast with the known example of Paris, which had, as early as 1765, closed all the city graveyards, and established cemeteries beyond the suburbs. One of the laws passed at the same time by the Parliament of Paris directed that the graves in the cemeteries should not be marked with stones, and that all epitaphs and inscriptions should be placed on the walls, a regulation which appears to have been greatly honoured in the breach. In 1776 Louis XVI., recognizing the benefit which Paris had derived from the city decree, prohibited graveyards in all the cities and towns of France, and rendered unlawful interments in churches and chapels; and in 1790 the National Assembly passed an Act commanding that all the old burial-grounds, even in the villages, should be closed, and others provided at a distance from habitations. Other States of Europe took pattern by these enlightened proceedings, and America was not slow in making laws upon the subject; but Great Britain, and its worst offender, London, went on in the old way, without let or hindrance, until 1850, For fifteen years prior to that date there had been in progress an agitation against the existing order of things, led by Dr. G.A. Walker, a Drury Lane surgeon, living in a very nest of churchyard fevers, who wrote a book and several pamphlets, delivered public lectures, and raised a discussion in the public press. The London City Corporation petitioned Parliament in 1842 for the abolition of burials within the City, and a Select Committee of the House of Commons was at once entrusted with an enquiry on the subject.

In the same year (1842) a Export was presented to Parliament by the Select Committee on "The Improvement of the Health of Towns," and especially on "The Effect of the Interment of Bodies in Towns." Its purport may be summed up in the following quotation:

"The evidence ... gives a loathsome picture of the unseemly and demoralizing practices which result from the crowded condition of the existing graveyards—practices which could scarcely have been thought possible in the present state of society.... We cannot arrive at any other conclusion than that the nuisance of interments in great towns and the injury arising to the health of the community are fully proved."

Pentney in the snow
© Godric Godricson
 Among the witnesses examined were Sir Benjamin Brodie and Dr. G.R. Williams. In 1846 a Bill was prepared to deal with the matter, but it was not until 1850 that an Act was passed "To make better provision for the Interment of the Dead in and near the Metropolis." Powers were conferred upon the General Board of Health to establish cemeteries or enlarge burial-grounds, and an Order in Council was made sufficient for closing any of the old churchyards either wholly or with exceptions to be stipulated in the order. One month's notice was all that was needed to set the Act in operation, and in urgent cases seven days; but it was found necessary in 1851 to pass another Act for the purpose of raising funds; and in 1852 a more stringent Act was put upon the Statute Book to deal summarily with the churchyards. This was, in the the following session, extended to England and Wales, the General Board of Health having reported strongly in favour of a scheme for "Extra-mural Sepulture" in the country towns, declaring that the graveyards of these places were in no better condition than those of London.

Consequently, in the years which followed 1850, a general closing of churchyards took place throughout the Metropolis, and to a lesser extent throughout the kingdom, and an active crusade against all similar  burial-grounds was instituted, which may be said to be still in operation. The substitution of new cemeteries in remote and mostly picturesque places was of immediate advantage in many ways, but it did little or nothing to remedy the dilapidated appearance of the old graveyards, which indeed, now that they brought in no revenues, became in many cases painfully neglected, dejected, and forlorn. Happily, in 1883, the Metropolitan Public Gardens Association was established, and its influence has been very marked in the improvement of the old enclosures and their conversion into recreation grounds. The Metropolitan Board of Works, the London County Council, the City Corporation, public vestries, and private persons, have shared in the good work, but the chief instrument has been the Public Gardens Association.

Pentney in the snow
© Godric Godricson
 Of old burial-grounds now open as public gardens in the London district there are more than a hundred. Care is always taken to preserve the sacred soil from profane uses, games being prohibited, and the improvements confined to paths and seats, levelling the ground and planting with trees and flowers. The gravestones, though removed to the sides of the enclosure, are numbered and scheduled, and all in which any living person can claim an interest are left untouched. No stones are ever destroyed in the process of reformation, but previous ill-usage and natural decay have rendered very many of them illegible, and in another century or so all these once fond memorials will probably have become blank and mute.

To the middle of the nineteenth century may also be assigned the change which we now see in the character of our gravestones. Quite in the beginning of the century the vulgar and grotesque carvings and Scriptural barbarisms of the eighteenth century had given place to a simple form of memorial in which it was rare to find the least effort at ornament; but, as soon as the Burial Acts were passed and the old churchyards were succeeded by the new cemeteries, the tasteful and elegant designs which are to be seen in every modern burial-ground were introduced, founded in great measure upon the artistic drawings of Mr. D.A. Clarkson, whose manifold suggestions, published in 1852, are still held in the highest admiration".


With One Hundred and Two Illustrations  BY W. T. VINCENT

Andrew Brown d. 14th January 1768

"Here lyeth the remains of Andrew Brown,
who departed this life the 14th day of
January 1768, aged 66 years. Also of
Mary his wife, who departed this life the
3d day of July 1802, aged 88 years."

The subject scarcely needs to be interpreted, being obviously intended to illustrate the well-known  passage in the Burial Service: "For the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised ... then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in Victory. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?" The reference in another ritual to the Lord of Life trampling the King of Terrors beneath his feet seems also to be indicated, and it will be noticed that the artist has employed a rather emphatic smile to pourtray triumph.

It was but natural to suppose that this work was the production of some local genius of the period, and I searched for other evidences of his skill. Not far away I found the next design, very nearly of the same date.


With One Hundred and Two Illustrations  BY W. T. VINCENT

Brick lined Grave

Caister Saint Edmund
© Godric Godricson


Ashill Parish Church and Cemetery
© Godric Godricson
"Undertakers state that they sometimes experience, in particularly crowded grave-yards, a sensation of faintness and nausea without perceiving any offensive smell. Dr. Riecke appears to conclude, from various instances which are given, that emanations from putrid remains operate in two ways, one set of effects being produced through the lungs by impurity of the air from the mixture of irrespirable gases ; the other set, through the olfactory nerves by powerful, penetrating, and offensive smells. On the whole, the evidence tends to establish the general conclusion that offensive smells are true warnings of sanitary evils to the population".


Sunday, 4 March 2012

Chaucer's Tomb - Westminster Abbey


Chaucer's Tomb

Lead coffins

"The bursting of leaden coffins in the vaults of cemeteries, unless they are watched and "tapped" to allow the mephitic vapour to escape, appears to be not unfrequent. In cases of rapid decomposition, such instances occur in private houses before the entombment"


Saturday, 3 March 2012

Jemma Chapman - d. 26th December 1899

© Godric Godricson

Edwin Chadwick - Disease (1842)

"Dr. Copeland, in his evidence before the Committee of the House of Commons, adduced the following remarkable case, stated to be of fever* communicated after death :

About two years ago (says he) I was called, in the course of my profession, to see a gentleman, advanced in life, well known to many members in this house and intimately known to the Speaker, This gentleman one Sunday went into a dissenting chapel, where the principal part of the hearers, as they died, were buried in the ground or vaults underneath. I was called to him on Tuesday evening, and I found him labouring under symptoms of malignant fever ; either on that visit or the visit immediately following, on questioning him on the circumstances which could have given rise to this very malignant form of fever, for it was then so malignant that its fatal issue was evident, he said that he had gone on the Sunday before (this being on the Tuesday afternoon) to this dissenting chapel, and on going up the steps to the chapel he felt a rush of foul air issuing from the grated openings existing on each side of the steps ; the effect upon him was instantaneous ; it produced a feeling of sinking, with nausea, and so great debility, that he scarcely could get into the chapel. He remained a short time, and finding this feeling increase he went out, went home, was obliged to go to bed, and there he remained. When I saw him he had, up to the time of my ascertaining the origin of his complaint, slept with his wife ; he died eight days afterwards ; his wife caught the disease and died in eight days also, having experienced the  same symptoms. These two instances illustrated the form of fever arising from those particular causes. Means of counteraction were used, and the fever did not extend to any other members of the family. Assuming that that individual had gone into a crowded hospital with that fever, it probably would have become a contagious fever. The disease would have propagated itself most likely to others, provided those others exposed to the infection were pre-disposed to the infection, or if the apartments where they were confined were not fully ventilated, but in most cases where the emanations from the sick are duly diluted by fresh air, they are rendered innocuous. It is rarely that I have found the effects from dead animal matter so very decisive as in this case, because in the usual circumstances of burying in towns the fetid or foul air exhaled from the dead is generally so diluted and scattered by the wind, as to produce only a general ill effect upon those predisposed ; it affects the health of the community by lowering the vital powers, weakening the digestive processes, but without producing any prominent or specific disease.”


Modern Christian witness

Caister Saint Edmund
© Godric Godricson

Thomas Alderton d.10th April 1767

"To the memory of Thomas, the son of
Thomas and Ann Alderton, who departed
this life the 10th day of April 1767, in the
13th year of his age."

The same artist almost of a certainty produced both of these figurative tombstones. The handicraft is similar, the idea in each is equally daring and grotesque, and the phraseology of the inscriptions is nearly identical. I thought both conceptions original and native to the place, but I do not think so now. In point of taste, the first, which is really second in order of date, is perhaps less questionable than the other. The hope of a joyful resurrection, however rudely displayed, may bring comfort to wounded hearts; but it is difficult to conceive the feelings of bereaved parents who could sanction the representation of a beloved boy, cut off in the brightest hour of life, coffined and skeletoned in the grave!

Above the coffin on Alderton's headstone is an ornament, apparently palms. It is not unusual to find such meaningless, or apparently meaningless, designs employed to fill in otherwise blank spaces, though symbols of death, eternity, and the future state are in plentiful command for such purposes. Something like this same ornament may be found on a very old flat stone in the churchyard of Widcombe, near Bath. It stretches the full width of the stone, and is in high relief, which has preserved it long after the accompanying inscription has vanished. The probable date may be about 1650.


With One Hundred and Two Illustrations  BY W. T. VINCENT

The Brightness

Everything decays in the countryside
© Godric Godricson
God full of mercy who dwells on high
Grant perfect rest on the wings of Your Divine Presence
In the lofty heights of the holy and pure
who shine as the brightness of the heavens
to the soul of the unnamed.

who has gone to his eternal rest
as all his family and friends
pray for the elevation of his soul.
His resting place shall be in the Garden of Eden.
Therefore, the Master of mercy will care for him under the protection of His wings for all time
And bind his soul in the bond of everlasting life.
God is his inheritance and he will rest in peace
and let us say Amen.

Taphophile in 1896

" This unpretentious work makes no claim to deal with the whole subject which it has presumed to open. Its aim is rather to promote in others the desire which actuates the author to follow up and develop the new field of antiquarian research which it has attempted to introduce. As old Weever says, in his quaint style:—"I have gained as much as I have looke for if I shall draw others into this argument whose inquisitive diligence and learning may finde out more and amende mine."

This book, then, is not a treatise, but simply a first collection of churchyard curiosities, the greater number of which have been gathered within a comparatively small radius. It is only the hoard of one collector and the contents of one sketch-book, all gleaned in about a hundred parishes. Many collectors may multiply by thousands these results, bring out fresh features, and possibly points of high importance.

Two chief purposes therefore animate my desire to publish this work. One is to supply such little information as I have gleaned on a subject which has by some singular chance escaped especial recognition from all the multitude of authors, antiquarians, and literary men. I have searched the Museum libraries, and consulted book-collectors, well-read archaeologists, and others likely to know if there is any work descriptive of old gravestones in existence, and nothing with the remotest relation thereto can I discover There are, of course, hundreds of books of epitaphs, more or less apocryphal, but not one book, apocryphal or otherwise, regarding the allegories of the churchyard. Can it be that the subject is bereft of interest? If so, I have made my venture in vain. But I trust that it is not so.

The second object is to recommend to others a new and delightful hobby, and possibly bring to bear upon my theme an accumulation of knowledge and combination of light. Gravestone hunting implies long walks in rural scenes, with all the expectations, none of the risks, and few of the disappointments of other pursuits. From ten to fifteen miles may be mapped out for a fair day's trudge, and will probably embrace from three to six parish churchyards, allowing time to inspect the church as well as its surroundings. Saturdays are best for these excursions, for then the pew-openers are dusting out the church, and the sexton is usually about, sweeping the paths or cutting the grass. The church door will in most cases be open, and you can get the guidance you want from the best possible sources. A chat with the village sexton is seldom uninviting, and he can generally point out everything worth your observation. But the faculty of finding that of which you are in search  will soon come to you. In the first place, the new portion of a churchyard—there is nearly always a new portion—may be left on one side. You will certainly find no ancient memorials there. In the next place, you may by a little observation pick out the eighteenth-century stones by their shape, which is as a rule much more ornamented and curvilinear than those of later date. They may also be detected very often by the roughness of their backs as well as by their weather-beaten complexions, and with a little experience and practice the student may guess correctly within a few years the age of any particular one seen even in the distance.

To tempt the reader therefore to take up the study which I have found so pleasant, so healthful, and so interesting, I now propose to place in order the proceeds of a few of my rambles, and shew how much success the reader may also expect in similar expeditions. His or her stock-in-trade should consist of a good-sized note-book or sketch-book of paper not too rough for fine lines, a B B pencil of reliable quality, and a small piece of sandstone or brick to be used in rubbing off the dirt and moss which sometimes obscure inscriptions. No kind of scraper should ever be employed, lest the crumbling memorial be damaged; but a bit of brick or soft stone will do no harm, and will often bring to view letters and figures which have apparently quite disappeared. If a camera be taken, a carpenter's pencil may be of service in strengthening half-vanished lines, and a folded foot-rule should always be in the pocket. A mariner's compass is sometimes useful in strange places, but the eastward position of a church will always give the bearings, and a native is usually to be found to point the way.

A road map of the county which you are about to explore, or, if in the vicinity of London, one of those admirable and well-known handbooks of the field paths, is useful, and the journey should be carefully plotted out before the start. A friend and companion of congenial tastes adds, I need not say, to the enjoyment of the excursion. My constant associate has happily a craze for epitaphs, but does not fancy sketching even in the rough style which answers well enough for my work, and I have had therefore no competitor. Together we have scoured all the northern part of Kent and visited every Kentish church within twenty miles of London. The railway also will occasionally land us near some old church which we may like to visit, and it was while waiting half an hour for a train at Blackheath station that I picked up the accompanying choice specimen in the ancient burial-ground of Lee."


With One Hundred and Two Illustrations  BY W. T. VINCENT

Friday, 2 March 2012

Edwin Chadwick - Interview

© Godric Godricson
"The effects of unguarded interments have, however, as will subsequently be noticed, been observed with greater care on the continent, and the proximity of wells to burial-grounds has been reported to be injurious. Thus it is stated in a collection of reports concerning the cemeteries of the town of Versailles, that the water of the wells which lie below the church-yard of St. Louis could not be used on account of its stench.

In consequence of various investigations in France, a law was passed, prohibiting the opening of wells within 100 metres of any place of burial ; but this distance is now stated to be insufficient for deep wells, which have been found on examination to be polluted at a distance of from 150 to 200 metres. In some parts of Germany, the opening of wells nearer than 300 feet has been prohibited.”


Thursday, 1 March 2012


Caister Saint Edmund
© Godric Godricson
  Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

William Ernest Henley (1849–1903)

William the Conqueror (1028-1087)

The evidence for William the Conqueror's death are contained in the nearly contemporary De Obitu Willelmi by an anonymous monk of Caen, where the king was actually buried, and the later Historia Ecclesiastica of Orderi Vitalis written approximately sixty-five years later.

William  "who was very corpulent, fell ill from exhaustion and heat" and died of a burst bowel at age 59. While jumping a trench on horseback, his stomach was forced onto the pommel of his sword.

There is little dignity in death, even for Kings and in the funeral service we hear that "the swollen bowels burst, and an intolerable stench assailed the nostrils of the by-standers and the whole crowd."

For William, even the frankincense and spices of the censers was not enough to mask the smell, and the rites were hurriedly concluded in an effort to move away.

Lost burial grounds - Hunstanton

The Lighthouse
© Godric Godricson
Hunstanton is one of those Norfolk towns that defies close description. "It is, what it is" and that’s an end to it.

I like Hunstanton and that means the residential ‘older’ Hunstanton and the more ‘seaside resort’ of New Hunstanton. In summer, people walk around the town in flip flops and summer hats and the place has a ‘kiss me kwik’ atmosphere. Having talked about the seaside atmosphere, the fish and chips aren’t that great for a seaside resort. British people (and many Commonwealth cousins around the world) understand that fish and chips are a vital part of a visit to the seaside and the social standing of a town can rise and fall depending on the perceived quality of the food.

I have an aversion to one or two fish and chip establishments in Hunstanton. They have a mightily high opinion of their products to the point where they don’t give much attention to service. There we have it and back to the purpose of this posting!

Heavily conserved wall
Saint Edmund's Church
© Godric Godricson
 The town has its own history and (like of lot of Norfolk) the history is extensive although not always easily accessible to the public on the internet. One wonders what the parish/town and district Council are  doing to publicise the services that the town has to offer as they take the locally raised Council Tax. The ancient Church of Saint Edmund [1] [2] stands on the ciff top and must be the centre of an ancient Saxon Cemetery although the present building is probably Norman in origin. The main body of the Church exisits as a low wall in addition to the small replacement altar at the East End. This is a marvellous survival and we can only wonder what is looked like from the sea as it stood on the cliff.

Edwin Chadwick - Interviews (1843)

Detail: Ashill
Parish Church
The following testimony of a lady, respecting the miasma which escaped from one burial-ground at Manchester, is adduced as an example of the more specific testimony as to the perception of its effects. This testimony also brings to view the circumstance that in the towns it is not only in surface emanations from the grave-yards alone that the morbific matter escapes.

You resided formerly in the house immediately contiguous to the burying-ground of chapel, did you not ?

Yes I did, but I was obliged to leave it.

Why were. you so obliged?

When the wind was west, the smell was dreadful. There is a main sewer runs through the burying-ground, and the smell of the dead bodies came through this sewer up our drain, and until we got that trapped, it was quite unbearable.

Do you not think the smell arose from the emanations of the sewer, and not from the burying-ground?

I am sure they came from the burying ground; the smell coming from the drain was exactly the same as that which reached us when the wind was west, and blew upon us from the burying-ground. The smell was very peculiar ; it exactly resembled the smell which clothes have when they are removed from a dead body. My servants would not remain in the house on account of it, and I had several cooks who removed on this account.

Did you observe any effects on your health when the smells were bad ?

Yes, I am liable to head-aches, and these were always bad when the smells were so also. They were often accompanied by diarrhrea in this house. Before I went there, and since I left, my head-aches have been very trifling.

Were any of the other inmates of the house afflicted with illness ?

I had often to send for the surgeon to my servants, who were liable to ulcerated sore throats.

And your children, were they also affected ?

My youngest child was very delicate, and we thought he could not have survived; since he came here he has become quite strong and healthy, but I have no right to say the burying-ground had any connexion with his health.