Sunday, May 1, 2016

Tomb of Jacques François Ardaillon (..?.- 1826), ironmaster.

Tomb of Jacques François Ardaillon (..?.- 1826), ironmaster.

While walking around Père-Lachaise Cemetery last Summer I happen upon the rare and amazing Neoclassical Greek Revival style tomb of Jacques François Ardaillon, ironsmith.  The tomb is very unusual because of the form. Built on a stone foundation the rest is made of cast iron possibly by Jacques himself. The main body of the tomb is rectangular shape with central rounded middle top with a Doric columned pedimented portico, topped with a cross.  Inside of the portico is a cast iron draped urn.  After the cross, the urn is one of the most commonly used cemetery monuments. The design represents a funeral urn, and is thought to symbolize immortality. 

Cremation was an early form of preparing the dead for burial. In some periods, especially classical times, it was more common than burial. The shape of the container in which the ashes were placed may have taken the form of a simple box or a marble vase, but no matter what it looked like it was called an "urn," derived from the Latin uro, meaning "to burn."
As burial became a more common-practice, the urn continued to be closely associated with death.
The urn is commonly believed to testify to the death of the body and the dust into which the dead body will change, while the spirit of the departed eternally rests with God.

The cloth draping the urn symbolically guarded the ashes. The shroud-draped urn is believed by some to mean that the soul has departed the shrouded body for its trip to heaven. Others say that the drape signifies the last partition between life and death.

This tomb is not in the best of condition. 

On one of the doors is a Owl which represents Wisdom & watchfulness.

Under the Owl are two Scythes representing the Reaping of life.

Detail of the Owl 

The photo is not crooked, the tomb is leaning and missing the door on this side. 

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