After Dinner Speeches
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HIS FATHER--"Well, my son?"
LITTLE CLARENCE--"I took a walk through the cemetery to-day and read the
inscriptions on the tombstones."
HIS FATHER--"And what were your thoughts after you had done so?"
LITTLE CLARENCE--"Why, pa, I wondered where all the wicked people were
The widower had just taken his fourth wife and was showing her around
the village. Among the places visited was the churchyard, and the bride
paused before a very elaborate tombstone that had been erected by the
bridegroom. Being a little nearsighted she asked him to read the
inscription, and in reverent tones he read:
"Here lies Susan, beloved wife of John Smith; also Jane, beloved wife of
John Smith; also Mary, beloved wife of John Smith--"
He paused abruptly, and the bride, leaning forward to see the bottom
line, read, to her horror:
"Be Ye Also Ready."
A man wished to have something original on his wife's headstone and hit
upon, "Lord, she was Thine." He had his own ideas of the size of the
letters and the space between words, and gave instructions to the
stonemason. The latter carried them out all right, except that he could
not get in the "E" in Thine.
In a cemetery at Middlebury, Vt., is a stone, erected by a widow to her
loving husband, bearing this inscription: "Rest in peace--until we meet
An epitaph in an old Moravian cemetery reads thus:
Remember, friend, as you pass by,
As you are now, so once was I;
As I am now thus you must be,
So be prepared to follow me.
There had been written underneath in pencil, presumably by some wag:
To follow you I'm not content
Till I find out which way you went.
I expected it, but I didn't expect it quite so soon.--_Life_.
After Life's scarlet fever
I sleep well.
Here lies the body of Sarah Sexton,
Who never did aught to vex one.
(Not like the woman under the next stone.)
As a general thing, the writer of epitaphs is a monumental liar.--_John
Wife of Timothy Brown,
aged 80 years.
She lived with her husband fifty years, and died
in the confident hope of a better life.
Here lies the body of Enoch Holden, who died suddenly and unexpectedly
by being kicked to death by a cow. Well done, good and faithful servant!
A bereaved husband feeling his loss very keenly found it desirable to
divert his mind by traveling abroad. Before his departure, however, he
left orders for a tombstone with the inscription:
"The light of my life has gone out."
Travel brought unexpected and speedy relief, and before the time for his
return he had taken another wife. It was then that he remembered the
inscription, and thinking it would not be pleasing to his new wife, he
wrote to the stone-cutter, asking that he exercise his ingenuity in
adapting it to the new conditions. After his return he took his new wife
to see the tombstone and found that the inscription had been made to
"The light of my life has gone out,
But I have struck another match."
Here lies Bernard Lightfoot,
Who was accidentally killed in the forty-fifth year
of his age.
This monument was erected by his grateful family.
I thought it mushroom when I found
It in the woods, forsaken;
But since I sleep beneath this mound,
I must have been mistaken.
On the tombstone of a Mr. Box appears this inscription:
Here lies one Box within another.
The one of wood was very good,
We cannot say so much for t'other.
Nobles and heralds by your leave,
Here lies what once was Matthew Prior;
The son of Adam and of Eve;
Can Bourbon or Nassau claim higher?
Kind reader! take your choice to cry or laugh;
Here Harold lies-but where's his Epitaph?
If such you seek, try Westminster, and view
Ten thousand, just as fit for him as you.
I conceive disgust at these impertinent and misbecoming familiarities
inscribed upon your ordinary tombstone.--_Charles Lamb_.
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