To commemorate All Saints’ Day today, I went to visit the cemetery of the town where I (currently) live. Not only to pay respect to the dearly departed of Siracusa, I also wanted to find out how the locals observe their Festa dei Morti (literally Day of the Dead) and hopefully to capture some of their traditions and idiosincracies…
I thought I should take a taxi to the cimetero but the fare of 15euros for a mere 3km distance is totally absurd so I decided to take a walk. Passing through the bus station I curiously asked a Controller and he directed me to the shuttle bus which ferries passengers to and fro the cemetery for Free, just for today only! How lucky could I get!
The Monumental Cemetery of Syracusa was built in 800 following an order declaring that the dead were no longer to be placed in churches hence, it was decided to create a special cemetery with family chapels for aristocratic families or religious orders, or tomb designs ranging from the simple to the elaborate. The cemetery shape is inspired by the Pantheon in Rome, bordered by a colonnade entrance and small upper dome) around which there are the monumental tombs and chapels in the neoclassical, Art Nouveau or of various architectural styles.
So I started my photowalk around and here are my snaps and observations:
He was once a football passionate.
Lamentation going on……….
The cemetery is carpeted with flowers today…
Freshening them up so they last longer
One or two are still available, or it looks like it was recently “vacated”
At least he enjoyed his life…
Cypress trees are very commonly found in cemeteries, particularly in Italy, because the wood emits a heavenly scent, freshening up the air. Also, the roots grow straight down and will not disturb anything around it.
This is not a network of apartments…rather, a network of cemetery walls.
The mere sight of its size and multiple floors almost knocked me down!
All year round, these cemetery walls, as in the traditional graves, are always bedecked with flowers – only in Italy.
here, stepladders are a necessity.
Son: Mamma, be careful
What is this building doing in the cemetery?
One would think it is the financial district of the town….
But it’s actually a high-rise cemetery! It’s the building for the dearly cremated.
I counted the floors, there are five in all – several washing sinks on each level
and an altar in every corner, on each floor
There’s a great view from the top floor, the sea can be seen in the background
the mausoleum village
Back on flat land, I saw this strange mausoleum – was he a horse lover?
more grandiose tombs
But in the midst of those grandiose tombs, there are some that are crumbling down….