Monday, May 28, 2012

Highgate Cemetary

Today I will be visiting Highgate Cemetary. I know it is a little strange and most people ask "What Is It? and Why?"

I first heard of Highgate Cemetary when I read the book "Her Fearful Symmetry" and then again when I started researching things to do while in London. This came up as a place to see that is off the beaten track. A brief explanation of the cemetary is:

Highgate Cemetary is a place of burial in north London, England. It is designated Grade I on the English Heritage Register of Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest in England. It is divided into two parts, named the East and West cemetary. There are approximately 170,000 people buried in around 53,000 graves at Highgate Cemetary. Highgate Cemetary is notable both for some of the people buried there as well as for its de facto status as a nature reserve.

The cemetary in its original form - the northwestern wooded area - opened in 1839, as part of a plan to provide sever large, modern cemeteries around the outside of London. Highgate soon became a fashionable place for burials and was much admired and visited. The Victorian attitude to death and its presentation led to the creation of a wealth of Gothic tombs and buildings. The cemetery's grounds are full of trees, shrubbery, and wild flowers, all of which have been planted and grown without human influence. The grounds are a haven for birds and small animals such as foxes.

After being asked why I would want to visit this cemetary, people then ask "Who is buried there?" So, here is a list of some of the famous people who have been interned in Highgate:

Douglas Adams - Novelist
Patrick Caulfield - Painter and Printmaker
George Eliot (Mary Ann Evans) - Novelist
Sheila Gish - Actress
William Friese-Greene - Cinema pioneer
Anna Mahler - Sculptress and daughter of Gustav Mahler
Karl Marx - Philosopher, historian, sociologist, and economist
Malcolm McLaren - Punk Impresario and Original Manager of the Sex Pistols
Feliks Topolski - Polish-born British expressionist painter
Jane Arden - Welsh-born film director, actor, screenwriter, playwright, poet
Catherine Dickens - Wife of Charles Dickens
John and Elizabeth Dickens - Parents of Charles Dickens
Stella Gibbons - Novelist
Christina Rossetti - Poet
Elizabeth Siddal - Wife and Model of artist/poet Dante Gabriel Rossetti
Jean Simmons - Actress
Adam Worth - Criminal mastermind and philanthropist.


SAngRiA Smiles said...

yay :) I keep thinking about what you are doing!

I think I saw this on one of those celeb Who Do You Think You Are shows.... I wanna say Reba McEntire has someone buried there.

Jane said...

This looks like am awesome adventure!!

Diane said...

Very interesting, enjoy!