Friday, May 6, 2011

Chiesa dei Morti

This man was stabbed in the heart at a ball.

Church of the dead in Urbania. In the early 1600s the act of burying the dead wasn't a norm and generally poor people would simply be buried under the ground outside of the town. The mummified corpses featured here were of the outcasts, disfigured, sick, poor or unidentified and they lay to rest in a wild spot outside Urbania.
After the arrival of Napoleon, new constructions uncovered these mummies. In the beginning they thought it was the work of man, even the town pharmacist organized for his own mummification (him featured as the cloaked Morti at the Chiesa after his death and the family line still running the local pharmacy up to this day). It was only some decades ago that a scientist discovered this particular kind of wild mushroom growing around Urbania as the cause for these corpses' mummification.

Outside Chiesa dei Morti

Preserved heart showing the stab wound right in the middle.

The most interesting thing about witnessing the remains of the dead is how fast it transports you back to where you are, here and now, in your skin, living and breathing and wondering how its possible that from this moment, the next one could be inside of a glass case - or elsewhere to that space where we go on.

1 comment:

ATOPOS said...

bbbrrrr... brava Katri! Spread the word of the Appennine mountains..!

Appenine Happenin'

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