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Famous Graves in the UK

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Published 03/06/2021
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The graves of well known people offer us a link to history, a chance to feel closer to people we have heard of but will never get a chance to meet, as we can see where they lived and died, and their graves allow us to pay our respects to them and everything they accomplished in life.

Here are some of the most famous graves that can be found here in the UK.

Winston Churchill

Winston Churchill is one of the most famous Prime Ministers the UK has ever had, best known for leading Britain through WW2 with his inspiring speeches. Foregoing a burial at Westminster Abbey, Churchill was laid to rest at St Martin’s Church in Bladon, Oxfordshire where his parents already rested, near to his birthplace. His wife was also buried here when she died almost 13 years later.

William Shakespeare

Shakespeare is probably the most famous playwright of all time, with his works still being celebrated over 400 years after his death. Shakespeare was buried in the Holy Trinity Church in his hometown, Stratford-upon-Avon. He insisted that his headstone be engraved with a warning to graverobbers, written in his traditional style: “Bleste be the man that spares thes stones And curst be he who moves my bones.”

Richard III

Richard III was one of the most well known kings of England, despite his reign lasting for only 2 years. After his death during the War of the Roses, Richard III was buried without ceremony in Leicester. After 500 years of the grave being lost, it was found under a car park in 2012. He has since been reburied in a tomb in Leicester Cathedral.

Jane Austen

Despite now being one of the most recognised names in English Literature, when she was buried in Winchester Cathedral, Hampshire, Jane Austen’s writing wasn’t initially mentioned in the inscription on her grave. She became more famous for it after her death, and a plaque was later added by her nephew, acknowledging her writing fame.

The Bronte Sisters

The Bronte Sisters are well known in the literature world for their novels and poetry, originally published under male pseudonyms. Charlotte and Emily were buried in the family crypt in St Michael and All Angels’ Church, in their hometown Haworth. Anne, however, was buried at St Mary’s Church, Scarborough, one of her favourite places, mentioned in two of her novels; Agnes Grey and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall.

J. R. R. Tolkien

Tolkien, author of the Lord of the Rings series and well known for his elaborate creation of the Middle Earth lore surrounding it, was buried with his wife in Wolvercote Cemetery, Oxfordshire. His works are referenced on the gravestone, with the names “Beren” and “Luthien” engraved below his and his wife’s names, from a story he wrote based upon the love he had for his wife.

Florence Nightingale

Famously known as “The Lady with the Lamp”, Florence Nightingale is often thought of as the founder of modern nursing. Florence was buried in the graveyard at St Margaret’s Church in East Wellow, Hampshire. Her family refused burial at Westminster Abbey so that she could be laid to rest near her childhood home.

These are some of the most famous graves in the UK. Hopefully you have enjoyed reading about them, and maybe I have inspired you to visit some new places. Thank you for reading.

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