Read The Book of the Bizarre: Freaky Facts and Strange Stories Online
Authors: Varla Ventura
“A COFFIN NAIL” IS SLANG FOR A CIGARETTE.
On April 21, 1997, a rocket containing the cremated remains of twenty-four people was launched into space. Among the remains were those of Gene Roddenberry,
series creator. The rocket was launched by Celestis, a company that formed in 1996 for the purpose of launching ashes into space.
“I AM TOLD HE MAKES A VERY HANDSOME CORPSE, AND BECOMES HIS COFFIN PRODIGIOUSLY.”
The words “coffin” and “casket” are commonly substituted for one another, but they do technically mean different things. A coffin is defined as a box or chest for burying a corpse and is generally wedge-shaped and simple. A casket is almost always rectangular and fancier than a coffin. In the fifteenth century, a casket was used to store jewels.
Ready to move on after a painful divorce? Then you should probably purchase a Wedding Ring Coffin. Described on the creators' Web site as “the perfect gift for yourself or a loved one for bringing closure after a divorce,” the coffin allows you to “bury the past and move on to a new tomorrow.”
Prices starting around $30 for beautiful miniature mahogany coffins inscribed with sayings such as, “Gone and forgotten,” “Six feet isn't deep enough,” and “I do NOT!”
Visit the company's Web site:
Kutna Hora in the Czech Republic is home to an ossuary, a depository for bones of the dead. The Kutna Hora ossuary includes a chandelier that is reputed to contain every bone in the human body.
In his book
Stories in Stone: A Field Guide to Cemetery Symbolism and Iconography
, author and photographer
Douglas Keister has compiled a reference guide for cemetery-goers that is equivalent to an Audubon field guide for ornithologists. Covering everything from Freemasonry symbols to the meanings of flowers,
Stories in Stone
is a must-have for any graveyard groupie. Keister teaches the reader that morning glories symbolize the resurrection, a draped urn may signify the veil between the earth and heavens, and a feather can represent ascent into heaven.
Some other common cemetery symbolism: