The significance of headstones

July 22, 2020 2:49 pm


Headstones have long been a recognised part of the way we deal with death in the West. Ornate or plain, with a fitting tribute, the concept of memorialising is an important one for human society. A walk through any graveyard in the country will demonstrate the importance of headstones, with some so old that the inscriptions can barely be read any longer.

Choosing an inscription is one of the hardest parts of memorialising a loved one. This is a lasting statement, on view to all, and must befit the emotions of what that person meant to those left behind. Some people choose a comical inscription, if the deceased was a bit of a joker in life, for example. Others choose to simply list the relationship the deceased had with those left behind, for example, ‘Much loved wife, mother, sister and aunt’.

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It is important to note that most churchyards have quite strict rules on what can and can’t be included on a headstone. A funeral director can offer guidance. For more details on Headstones, visit a site like

For those who had a deep faith in life, a religious phrase is often used to adorn the headstone. Sometimes family members choose an image of the person as a lasting tribute or an image of an activity that they were passionate about, such as football, for instance.

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There is no right or wrong way to create a memorial for a loved one. It is a highly personal choice for the bereaved and perhaps even the deceased who may have left instructions or wishes they would like taken into account.