The Burial of the von Adlerbergs of Viru-Nigula in the Context of the 19th Century

Kristiina Johanson, Tõnno Jonuks, Jana Limbo-Simovart
2006 Folklore  
The article analyses archaeological excavations which were carried out in the county of Lääne-Viru in the Viru-Nigula churchyard. During the excavation a tomb with two burials was opened -a woman, buried in 1821, and a man, buried in 1841, were studied. From the head of the coffin five sets of glass plates with silhouette portraits were unearthed. These are unique in the 19th-century Estonian context and contemporary examples are not known from neighbouring areas either. In addition to the
more » ... ddition to the example from Viru-Nigula tomb, an overview is given of the situation of research into burials of Modern Age as a whole. remaining mortar from the corners of the vault that were already weakly connected was washed out. After the collapse of the burial chamber, the local municipal government of Viru-Nigula was caught in a dilemma: whether to respect the peace of the dead and fill the chamber with sand or open the tomb, clear the burials, document them and thereafter fill the tomb. In Estonia sites of this type have been studied only briefly and the topic has not attracted the interest of historians either. Thus we cannot consider our knowledge of the burial custom of the nineteenth-century nobility to be adequate. The National Heritage Board, the pastor of the Viru-Nigula congregation and the local government agreed with the archaeologists that filling the chamber without scientific research would simply result in the loss of information. Therefore it was decided to open the chamber, and the process was started at the end of the summer.
doi:10.7592/fejf2006.32.von fatcat:z3rbyavgrzeibl6u3ykso3a3gu