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The Hans Christian Andersen Center

Religious motifs : Overview. Search. About religious motifs

See also Funeral, Graveyard

Keywords:

Death, graveyard, cross

Description of this motif: Graves are a place for melancholy, sorrow and memories, and so it is in Andersen's tales, for example in the "The Old Tombstone". The emphasis is on memories of the dead, even when oblivion prevails, as in the mercyless story "The Wind Tells about Valdemar Daae and His Daughters":

The stork had given her shelter to the day of her death. I sang at her funeral," said the Wind, "as I had sung at her father's; I know where his grave is, and her grave, but no one else knows.

Now there are new times, changed times. The old highway is lost in the fields, old cemeteries have been made into new roads, and soon the steam engine, with its row of cars, will come to rush over the forgotten graves of unknown ancestors. Whew, whew, whew! On, on!

Example :

The tale has not been translated (by Hersholt) and is therefore quoted in Danish. Further information and links.

Og Aaringer kom og Aaringer, hen over den lille Piges Grav voxede Grsset, men ud fra Skolen, Aar for Aar fremad gik en Mand med Tro i sit Hjerte, med strke Tanker i sin Pande (...)

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