Gravestone commonly known as headstone or tombstone is a marker mostly a stone which is placed on a grave. It forms part of the tradition of Christian, Muslim and Jewish religions’ burials. The stone is usually inscribed details like, the name of the person deceased, their birth date and the death date. Often, a special message or rather a prayer is also included. Others will prefer having some more funerary art pieces included. Some markers will have inscriptions which bears information useful to local historians and genealogists. Others will bear epitaphs which are use to praise the person deceased or even religious texts quotations. In very rare cases you also get inscriptions of faith testament, claiming fame, admonishment or even a plea.
Gravestone is more of a funerary art commonly used and it is among the oldest of the forms. Originally, this is the stone to the grave or even the coffin. The headstones are placed on the head of the grave to mark the graves with the special messages engraved on them. Graves mainly focus on remembrance and mourning. The names of the deceased in the family are added on the same headstone usually describing the lineage of a family over the decade. Gravestones or even plots in the cemetery are costly and so such also symbolize the prominence of the person or their lineage in the community and their wealth. For Christians, those termed wealthiest will erect very elaborate memorials most in churches instead of having the simple external headstones.
Gravestones can be designed either as upright slabs either with squared, pedimental, point-arced, gabled, rounded or semi-circular tops. Originally, symbols reminding us of death were used to decorate the same such as heavenly crowns, heads of winged cherubs, the gravedigger shovels and skulls. For the Muslims, the headstones are an upright shaft, rectangular shaped with its top engraved with carved topknot.