Thursday, May 24, 2012

Notable epitaphs

Go tell the Spartans, stranger passing by that here, obedient to their law, we lie.
Simonides's epigram at Thermopylae
I am ready to meet my Maker. Whether my Maker is prepared for the great ordeal of meeting me is another matter.
Winston Churchill[2]
To save your world you asked this man to die: Would this man, could he see you now, ask why?
— Epitaph for the Unknown Soldier, written by W. H. Auden[3]
Against you I will fling myself, unvanquished and unyielding, O Death!
Virginia Woolf[4]
Good frend for Jesus sake forebeare,
To digg þe dust encloased heare.
Blese be þe man þat spares þes stones,
And curst be he þat moves my bones.
In modern English:
Good friend for Jesus sake forbear,
To dig the dust enclosed here.
Blessed be the man that spares these stones,
And curst be he that moves my bones.
William Shakespeare[5]
I told you I was ill.
Spike Milligan
I've finally stopped getting dumber.
Paul Erdős
That's all folks.
Mel Blanc
If anyone at my funeral has a long face, I'll never speak to him again.
Stan Laurel
Consider, friend, as you pass by: As you are now, so once was I. As I am now, you too shall be. Prepare, therefore, to follow me.
— Scottish tombstone epitaph
Sleep after toyle, port after stormie seas,
Ease after warre, death after life, does greatly please.
Joseph Conrad tombstone epitaph. (epigraph taken from Edmund Spenser's The Faerie Queene

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