New England Puritans knew death was ever present, from infancy on. When images were finally allowed on gravestones from the 1680s and later, the winged death head was a common emblem, along with the motto, MOMENTO MORI, a reminder to remember that death is certain.

Here are a few early examples, some turned ghostly by weathering over the centuries.

To view straight-through, open here.

For a version to print out, open here.


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