preview

Landscape Perspective

Better Essays
Landscape Perspectives on Death Landscapes have been modified by humans since ancient times and continue to be today. Whether for intensive agricultural purposes or mortuary practices, it is part of everyday life. Modification of a landscape for mortuary practices is to connect the living and ancestors through physical bonds, but placing the dead with mapping out tombs is for the living. The landscape perspective varies between groups but by integrating the dead into an environment, through monuments, burials into natural features, or offerings and shrines, the relationship between the dead and the landscape is a key factor is relations with ancestors creating traditions that are still around today.
Funerary rites and practices show the
…show more content…
In the region, there are deep sinkholes in limestone ridges, which are seen as passages to the underworld of the dead by locals, Bimin- Kuskusmin (Pearson, 131). They believe that ancestral spirits come out of the holes to watch over the living and that through offerings and shrines to the ancestors, especially after the death of a loved one, they are able to keep the ancestors happy and avoid haunting. Another factor of their mortuary connect to the sinkholes is the oil that seeps out of some of the holes that is seen as a source of fertility and regeneration pushed forward by their ancestors. Despite the mortuary importance of the landscape, the dead are not buried in or near the area. The actual placement of the body is not important as the offerings the living give to the dead at the entrance is what is important (Pearson, 131). Due to the practice being about the benefit of the living and not the…show more content…
It becomes part of everyday life and the living are always aware of it and those buried among it. But, despite the tombs or monuments being visible within the landscape there is still this separation between the dead and the living. Examples of such tombs can be found from Neolithic monuments in Europe. There are three types of monuments, the first being a dolmen where communal burials occurred, and the site was covered with rough boulders and one flat one on top. These dolmens evolved with the settlements and were engineered throughout time but they stayed the center of ritual landscape. The second is menhir, the standing stone which had ritual and astronomic relations, as it is lined up with the horizon. Last of the monuments are henges, which are a circle of usually wood uprights that have ditches and embankments around them, along with notches that point to other henge sites (Fisher, DATE). The most well-known being Stone Henge. It was used for a vast period of time and continues to be used for rituals today. It was rare for henges to be created with stones, and in this case the stones were not local and had to be transported to the area. Representing the importance of this ritual and burial site, as they represent the collective ancestors (Pearson, 131). Stone Henge was a multi-functional monuments and burial ground, for several hundred barrows that circle the
Get Access