Monday, January 30, 2012

Hietaniemi Jewish Cemetery, Helsinki, Finland

This is my first Jewish cemetery. I was so excited to find it because I had not been expecting to locate a Jewish cemetery on my trip to Helsinki. Hietaniemi is very famous for its cemeteries, but I had no idea that so many different cemeteries existed there.  Although I have never been to a Jewish cemetery before, I'm sure that this is one of the most beautiful and elaborate ones I could have found for a first impression.



So, a Jewish cemetery has some very obvious differences from a Christian cemetery. As you may notice, the Star of David is omnipresent. That's the first clue and you are in a Jewish cemetery. Another key difference is that with  the exception of the person's name, the tombstone inscriptions are all in Hebrew.


In this photograph, every single tombstone bares the Star of David. 


Another interesting image is the Jewish Kohanim hands, (see on the left side of the image below) which are a peace blessing. This symbol was found on many tombstones.



Identical family graves were beautiful and well-maintained, as with these images below.






A stone tree motif.







The tombstones were all very about the same size and shape, which gave the cemetery a very sleek, modern look.





This photo was taken with an iPhone.

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