The Plymouth Colony Archive Project

Additional Illustrations of
Evolving Gravestone Styles

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The gravestone below is an example of Stone 3 from the Plympton County cemetery, as depicted in Figure 3 of the study by James Deetz and Edwin Dethlefsen entitled Death's Head, Cherub, Urn and Willow.
Plympton County gravestone depicted as Stone 3 in Figure 3 of study entitled Death's Head, Cherub, Urn and Willow    This is the position of this gravestone in the Plympton cemetery stylistic trends over time; use the link below to see a full-size version of this Figure 3
The teeth of the earlier skull design have been lowered and reduced in size on this stone's design, and are being replaced with a heart-shaped element for the mouth. Note also that every other row of feather ends is reversed on this stone, creating wavy lines that evolve eventually into the curled hair of the "Medusa" design, as shown in Stones 7 through 10 (Figure 3).
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Figure 3 of Death's Head, Cherub, Urn and Willow article

Death's Head, Cherub, Urn and Willow article

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© 2001-2007 Copyright and All Rights Reserved by
Patricia Scott Deetz, Christopher Fennell
and J. Eric Deetz