Up and Down

One of the most common Christian symbols displayed on old gravestones is the hand with the pointing finger.

UpPointHand

When the finger points upward it indicates the journey of the soul after death and is a sign of the ascent of the deceased to Heaven where the worries of the world are past.

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up-Nassagewaya_st Johns_illegibleI cannot call, he makes me fall
Beneath thy chastening nod
One must be first O!
We all prepare to meet our God.

The finger pointing to a ribbon may represent that the deceased was a female.
up ribbon-Oakville_finger ribbon

A hand holding a book represents the Bible and resurrection through scripture.
up bible-Puslinch_Crown (12)In death’s cold arms lies sleeping
A tender parent, a companion dear

A hand reaching down represents the hand of God reaching from Heaven to take the soul. It reminds us of our mortality.

down

A broken link always symbolizes the death of a family member. A hand holding the broken chain represents God taking the soul home.

down link-NYS_Finger lakes 4 down link-Thorold5

The scroll is a symbol of life and time, the drapery represents the partition between life and death.

down scross_Fergus_Belyside down scroll-Thorold7

Weep not for me my parent dear
I am not dead but sleeping here
I was not yours, but God’s above…
down flowers_Milton_Boston church_Mc Nabb

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