Where ever I travel, I love wandering through cemeteries. Strange as this may seem, I find it interesting looking at the tombstones marking the graves, seeing how far they date back, how old the person was when they died and sometimes the cause of death. It’s interesting to combine the dates with history to understand more about the times they lived in. Cemeteries have quite a genealogy of the surrounding area!
Europe is full of great cemeteries dating back for eons. If you find cemeteries as fascinating as I do, then I have found one you will want to visit!
This optimism towards death and the colorful headstones are thought to be attributed to the Dacian’s who believed in eternity and that death leads to a better life. The poems included are written as a message from the dead to the living.
The Merry Cemetery was founded in 1935 by Stan Ioan Patras who was a local artist and the sculptor of the first tombstone. When he died in 1977 his apprentice Damitru Pop Tincu took over making the tombstones for the village.
As an example of the poems on the tombstones, here is the one on Stan Ioan Patras’:
Since I was a little boy
I was known as Stan Ioan Pătraş
Listen to me, fellows
There are no lies in what I am going to say
All along my life
I meant no harm to anyone
But did good as much as I could
To anyone who asked
Oh, my poor World
Because It was hard living in it
When I stumbled upon the Merry Cemetery in Romania, I was completely taken in by its beauty and its message. I hope you feel the same.
To get a better vision of Cimitirul Vesel, here is a short video I found on youtube