CHURCH OF ST LUKE
Church Post Code LE7 4WE
There were five Vale Of Belvoir Angel gravestones recorded by the Heathcote's in their study. Sadly, a couple of the stones here have sunk deeply in to the ground with much of the text now being below ground level.
Close by is a gravestone to William Hardy. This stone has the hour glass and crossed bones.
The stone reads 'Here lyeth interred the body of William Hardy who departed this life Oct 26th 1702 in ye 78 year of his age'
'Anne ye wife of William Hardy died October 12th 1704 aged 66 years'
Fascinating to look at William's year of birth, which would be 1624 ish! He would have been a young man when the English Civil War started; perhaps he even fought! He would have been early 40's when the Bubonic Plague swept the country!
The stone to George Burbidge has sunk very badly in to the ground. What remains is the angel, who is scowling, and a few words of text.
Any epitaph at the foot of the grave is lost to view. What can still be seen is as follows...
'Here lyeth the body of George Burbidge he died (unreadable) 1749 aged 75 years'
'Come Ye Blessed' is carved across the top of this rain splattered stone to Mary Hardy.
The stone reads 'Here lyeth the body of Mary the wife of Thomas Hardy She departed this life January 3rd 1705'.
'Pale death will hardly find another So good a wife so kind a mother In all her actions so discreet is she who lies here at your feet'.
In all likelihood the term 'Pale Death' comes from Revelation Chapter 6, the first part of verse 9 where it says 'And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death'.
This was the fourth horseman of the apocalypse and it has been suggested that the colour of this horse was like the sickly pallor of a corpse!
The gravestone to Thomas Franke is leaning over at an angle and partially obscured by another stone which is leaning over in front of it.
'Here lieth interr'd the body of Thomas the son of Thomas Franke by Elizabeth his wife he died the 13th day of February 1702 and in the 4th year of his age'
The epitaph below is mostly obscured by the gravestone leaving in front of it. However a little of it can be seen and it is a fairly common rhyme; one that was often used when a young child passed away. It is liable to say 'Short was his race long is his rest God takes them soonest who he loves best'.
The fifth and final Vale of Belvoir Angel stone here is another to have leaned over and sunk a little. It is also not the easiest to pick out detail from. In its time, this would have been a beautiful piece of work.
This is a finely carved double angel stone, 'Be Ye Ready' carved in to a heart shape between the angels.
The text that we can still see is carved in relief, a time consuming and skilled process where the background around the lettering is chiseled away leaving the letters themselves standing proud of the stone
'Here lyeth the body of Anne daughter of Robert Barsby by Mary his wife who died July the 31st 1733 her age (unreadable)