LOVE CONQUERS WALL
Roermond, Limburg, The Netherlands
Here’s a novel solution to burial taken by a Dutch couple of mixed religion who were forbidden from being buried in the same grave.
J.W.C van Gorcum, a colonel of the Dutch Cavalry and militia commissioner in Limburg, was a Protestant. In 1842, he married 22-year-old Jonkvrouwe van Aefferden, a well-heeled Catholic aristocrat, with whom he enjoyed 38 years of happy marriage despite the considerable controversy their initial wedding caused.
Colonel van Gocum died in 1880 and was buried in the Protestant section of the Roermond graveyard.
Shortly before she died eight years later, his widow said she did not wish to be entombed in the van Aefferden family mausoleum, which lay in the adjacent Catholic graveyard.
Instead, she asked to be buried against the wall, directly beside her husband’s grave.
The two graves were subsequently connected by this poignant sculpture of two clasped hands across the wall.