Tombstone Art/Symbols

Anchor/Ships -- Hope or Seafaring profession
Angel, Flying- Rebirth; Resurrection.
Angel, Trumpeting- Resurrection.
Angel, Weeping- Grief and Mourning.
Arch - Victory in death.
Arrow- Mortality.
Bird- Eternal life.
Bird, Flying- Resurrection.
Book-Representation of a holy book: i.e. the Bible.
A pair of Holy Books on Mormon (LDS) headstones indicates the Bible and Book of Mormon
Three Holy Books on Mormon headstones indicates the Bible, Book of Mormon, and Doctrine & Covenants -- all of which are scripture to the LDS Church.
Breasts (Gourds, Pomegranates) - Nourishment of the soul; the church.
Bouquets/Flowers -- Condolences, grief, sorrow
Broken Column -- Loss of Head of Family
Broken Ring -- Family Circle Severed
Buds/Rosebud -- Morning of Life or Renewal of Life
Bugles -- Resurrection and the Military
Butterfly -- Short-lived - Early Death
Candle being Snuffed -- Time, mortality
Cherub -- Angelic
Coffin, Father Time, Picks/Shovels, Darts -- Mortality
Columns and Doors- Heavenly entrance.
Corn -- Ripe Old Age
Cross -- Emblem of Faith
Crossed Swords -- High-ranking military person
Crown- Glory of life after death.
Cup or Chalice- The Sacraments.
Dove- Purity; Devotion.
Dove, Flying- Resurrection.
Drapes- Mourning; Mortality.
Flame or Light- Life; Resurrection.
Flower- Fragility of life.
Flower, Severed Stem- Shortened life.
Flying Birds -- Flight of the Soul
Fruits -- Eternal plenty
Full-Blown Rose -- Prime of Life
Garland or Wreath- Victory in death.
Grim Reaper- Death personified.
Hand, Pointing Up- Pathway to heaven; Heavenly reward.
Hands, Clasped- The goodbyes said at death.
Hand of God Chopping -- Sudden Death
Handshakes -- Farewell
Harp -- Praise to the Maker
Heart- Love; Love of God; Abode of the soul; Mortality.
Horns -- The Resurrection
Hourglass- Passing of time.
Hourglass, Flying- Time flies.
Imps -- Mortality
Ivy -- Friendship and Immortality
Lamb- Innocence.
Laurel ---Fame or Victory
Lily or Lily of Valley -- Emblem of Innocence and Purity
Lion- Courage; The Lion of Judah.
Morning Glory -- Beginning of Life
Oak Leaves and Acorn -- Maturity, Ripe Old Age
Open Book/ Bible -- Deceased Teacher, Minister, etc.
Pall- Mortality.
Palm Branch -- Signifies Victory and Rejoicing
Pick- Death; Mortality.
Poppy -- Sleep
Portals -- Passageway to eternal journey
Rod or Staff- Comfort for the bereaved.
Rooster- Awakening; Resurrection.
Roses -- Brevity of earthly existence
Scythe- Death; The divine harvest.
Seashell- Resurrection; Life everlasting; Life's pilgrimage.
Sheaf of Wheat -- Ripe for Harvest, Divine Harvest, Time
Skull- Mortality.
Skull/ Crossed Bones- Death.
Skeleton- Life's brevity.
Snake (Tail in Mouth)- Everlasting life in heaven.
Spade- Mortality; Death.
Stars and Stripes Around Eagle -- Eternal Vigilance, Liberty
Sun Rising- Renewed life.
Sun Shining-Life everlasting.
Sun Setting- Death.
Thistle- Scottish descent.
Thistles -- Remembrance
Tombs -- Mortality
Torch Inverted -- Life Extinct
Tree- Life.
Tree Sprouting- Life everlasting.
Severed Branch- Mortality.
Tree Stump- Life interrupted.
Tree Stump w/Ivy -- Head of Family - Immortality
Tree Trunk- Brevity of life.
Tree Trunk Leaning- Short interrupted life.
Trumpeters -- Heralds of the Resurrection
Urn- Immortality (ancient Egyptian belief that life would be restored in the future through the vital organs placed in the urn).
Urn with /Wreath or Crepe -- Mourning
Urn with Blaze -- Undying Friendship
Weeping Willow Tree- Mourning; Grief; Nature's lament.
Willows -- Earthly Sorrow
Winged Face- Effigy of the deceased soul; the soul in flight.
Winged Skull- Flight of the soul from mortal man.
Wreath- Victory.
Wreath on Skull- Victory of death over life.
Wheat Strands or Sheaves- The divine harvest