Cemetery Symbolism 3 – The Dove
It’s time once again to talk about the symbols of the graveyard. Today we talk about:-
The symbol of a dove is found in both Christian and Jewish cemeteries. It symbolises the resurrection, purity, peace and innocence.
If the dove appears to be ascending it’s said to represent the raising of a soul to heaven. If it appears descending on the stone this illustrates the dove’s descent from heaven which assures a safe passage to the after-life.
A dove simply laying dead symbolizes a life cut prematurely short.
If the dove is holding an olive branch (as in the image above), it symbolises a departed soul which has reached ultimate divine peace in heaven.
NOTE: As with most things symbolic, the true meaning of symbols found on graves and headstones are always open to interpretation. Wherever possible I attempt to highlight the most plausible, most interesting, or most widely accepted explanation.
© Colin Lawson Books