Order No Rainbows

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Taphophilia – a love of visiting graveyards

on August 10, 2014

I like graveyards and tend to check them out wherever I go. This may (and does) seem morbid to some people but I like to look at the names, the styles of tombstones and memorials. So when I went to Košice I headed for the public graveyard and the Jewish cemetery which is next door to it. I had a very interesting morning there and would recommend a visit to any other taphophiliacs (people who like to visit graveyards) out there

The Jewish graveyard had no public access, which was a little disappointing. There was a fence linking it to the public graveyard and I contemplated slipping through to have a look around, see the Holocaust memorial and take some photos. But I decided not to – I didn’t want to be disrespectful. This proved to be a good decision when I found out later that there were a couple of very large and unfriendly guard dogs protecting the place. It’s a shame that the cemetery was inaccessible, but completely understandable, given that Jewish graves are often vandalised. Anyway here are some photos I took through the fence. The star on the Holocaust memorial used to be on a synagogue in Košice. The building is now used as the local House of Art, and the star has been replaced by a lute.

IMG_2791

Jewish graveyard

The public graveyard was very interesting. There was a wide variety of names, some showing the influence of the Austr-Hungarian empire. Lots of different tombs, gravestones and statues, and quite a few war graves.

Graveyard 1

graveyard 2

In one area there was a large memorial to some Russian soldiers who had died during the war. They are buried in a mixture of individual and communal graves, with a large white memorial which certainly caught my eye from some distance away. Definitely a Communist plot!

Communist

Here are a few final miscellaneous images. I can’t work out if the yellow signs I saw on some of the graves were asking for the graves to be cleaned up or threatening to evict the bodies for non-payment of some kind of fee.

Graveyard 3

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