It’s Forbidden to Walk on His Tomb – 1065

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Westminster abbeyOn December 28, 1065, London’s  Westminster Abbey was consecrated.  Westminster is an integral part of British history, and houses the Confessor’s Shrine, and the tombs of kings and queens. Every monarch, since William the Conqueror with the exception of Edward V and Edward VIII were crowned in the Abbey.

The number of people buried or commemorated in the Church is estimated to be about  3,300. Registers weren’t kept until 1607, but existing documents provide the names of many of those buried.  The oldest person buried there was Thomas Parr, who supposedly lived 152 years, through the reign of ten monarchs.

Among those buried there are:

Poets/writers:

  • Geoffrey Chaucer
  • John Dryden
  • Charles Dickens
  • Robert Browning,
  • Rudyard Kipling
  • Alfred Tennyson

Scientists:

  • Sir Isaac Newton,
  • Charles Darwin
  • Ernest Rutherford

Musicians:

  • George Frederic Handel
  • Ralph Vaughan Williams

Politicians:

  • William Pitt,
  • William Gladstone,
  • Clement Attlee

Among the burials is the tomb of The Unknown Warrior, an unidentified British soldier killed on a European battlefield during the First World War. He was buried in the Abbey on 11 November 1920, and is the only grave on which it is forbidden to walk.

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