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Customs

 
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adb41



Joined: 24 Apr 2008
Posts: 1539

PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 11:38 am    Post subject: Customs Reply with quote

I visited the Netherlands a few months ago, and came across 8 wargraves in a cemetery near Arnhem. These were all for men who had died when their planes were shot down in the area. Is anyone familiar with the significance of the pebble placed on the top of the gravestones?
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David McNay
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Joined: 21 Sep 2007
Posts: 1556
Location: Lanarkshire

PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 12:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I googled and got this:

Quote:
It is Jewish custom, to place a pebble or small stone on a grave when one visits a cemetery. This is intended to convey a three-fold message. "You are not forgotten." "See-I have been here." "I have added to your monument."

This is not as much a religious thing as a custom or tradition. It is probably still done as the use of cut flowers is considered improper in the entire Jewish burial practice. (So, don't send or bring them on bereavement calls...a gift of -Kosher- food when making a "shiva" call is best).
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spoons



Joined: 02 Oct 2007
Posts: 1788
Location: St John's Town of Dalry

PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 3:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It need not be a stone, it can be any token of your visit. I first saw it explained in a US police drama a few years ago. Sometimes you see a penny or foreign coin (presumably to indicate the nationality of the visitor). The air crash memorial on top of Cairnsmore of Fleet usually has a few stones on, one more after my last visit - I rather like the tradition.

\Paul
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DerekR



Joined: 04 Oct 2007
Posts: 809
Location: Hawick

PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 4:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's also an ancient Scottish tradition.
Before battle the men would each throw a stone onto a pile. After the battle, they would remove a stone.
Those stones that were left represented those lost in battle.
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JIMMCGINLAY



Joined: 05 Oct 2007
Posts: 748
Location: Glasgow

PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 5:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

When I visited the wee cemetery below Iona Abbey last year all of the CWGC graves had stones on them. I didn't see any on any of the other graves.
http://scottishwargraves.phpbbweb.com/viewtopic.php?t=278
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spoons



Joined: 02 Oct 2007
Posts: 1788
Location: St John's Town of Dalry

PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 6:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

DerekR wrote:
It's also an ancient Scottish tradition.
Before battle the men would each throw a stone onto a pile. After the battle, they would remove a stone.
Those stones that were left represented those lost in battle.


I read somewhere that was the origin of a cairn as a memorial

\Paul
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DerekR



Joined: 04 Oct 2007
Posts: 809
Location: Hawick

PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 9:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The HLI cairn at High Wood was erected to the Highland tradition.
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