Enfield Street Cemetery had by far the best view of any of the cemeteries I visited this week. Set against green trees and blue hills, it's a rural cemetery that includes several 18th-century sandstones, many 19th-century marble tablets and obelisks, and modern stones. Obelisks have quite a different feel when they're arranged in clusters, like a marble forest, as opposed to in the St. George's/St. Mark's Cemetery, where they stand isolated, like lighthouses in a sea of shorter stones.
The first thing to catch my eye in this cemetery was the huge sandstone orbs positioned on top of these gravestones. There is one other set of such orbs in the cemetery, but it's only a pair. As you can see, it looks as though this stone began as a pair - Ephraim Pease and his wife Tabitha - but was transformed into a trio with the addition of second wife Rebekah. I have never seen orbs like this before, but they seem appropriate, given that orbs are widely used to symbolize eternity. Small stone orbs (about the size to fit in the palm of your hand) known as "petrospheres" have been found in Neolithic sites in Britain and Ireland.
The color and shadows in these photos aren't the best, but I had to make do with a somewhat overcast sky and stones that were lit mostly from behind. A few times I was able to take advantage of other conference attendees who had brought a mirror with them to cast light on the stones; you can see the results below.
The weird insect-winged, sawtooth-chinned cherub on the right in the first picture was duplicated in other stones in this cemetery, as well as in the next one we visited. I was surprised by the material of this stone and the one next to it, which I hadn't seen before; it's a type of stone called schist, which contains tiny grains of micha that sparkle in the sun. I also like the epitaph on the second stone: "The State of Mortals here behold: For young must die as well as old ..." Thanks, people definitely wouldn't have known that in the 18th century.
Find A Grave.
Lastly, from a much later period, is this massive zinc obelisk, dating to 1883. Believe it or not, this stone is so massive that its base is buckling under its own weight (though you can't really see it in this photograph).