Descriptions of documented graveyards - (281) Spomyšl
Description The cemetery is situated uphill, rather far from the village. It seems as it was formed on two floors. The lower one is closer to the village, the upper comes from times of Haskala. Haskala gravestones are almost all displaced, but their signs are possible to read.
The oldest part of the cemetery is in the lower rear place. The gravestones had been there since 1720 - 1721. The burial place was enlarged right after (in the front there are graves - among others – of chewra kadisha members, mostly buried in 19th century).
First matzeiva from the „upper“ floor comes from 1832.
The cemetery is in a moderate condition. Out of 278 preserved matzeivot (or their remainings) are legible only 160. The half of the rest lies with their face down. In 2005 the former maintaince of the place was still visible. It seems that cemetery hasn´t become a victim of boy scouts´ nightly trails or a target of teenagers´ amorous serenades. Thanks to the fact that there is no „gardening colony“ nearby the cemetery neither turned into a junkyard.
There is a certain hazard though: locusts, trees so typical for local environment. They might overgrow.
Characteristics and Speciality Probably most characteristic for this forestal cemetery is its literary „fame“. That is to say a field of life of all real characters of Mr. Rakous´ beautiful piece „Vojkovičtí a přespolní“, known also as a compilation of short stories „Modche a Rezi“. We hoped pointlessly to find also Naciček Fried from Kozarovice here. Perhaps we ran into her matzeiva, but we cannot confirm it frankly. Mr. Rakous wrote his short stories in 1885-1926. We found only two Frieds, both were buried here around 1810. There is no Ignatz or Jicchak (all surnames are presented in the tablet)
The second typical attribute consists a certain „arrangment“ of matseivot. The dating confirms undoubtly a distinctive lodgment in the cemetery´s field – in about four or five paralel lines. Therefore about four lines fall to one generation. Haskalic part is less systematic. It is possible that in the half of 19th century the manner to acquire whole „family fields“ was accepted. But in general the former „sitting order“ was hanceforth respected.
The third typical attribute is rather high number of domiciles. The cemetery served many villages of the reagion. There is also quite high number of chewra kadisha members.
Language and Style of Epitaphs. In general we see how language (hebrew especially) corresponds with the time of cemetery´s foundation and its further developments (For most interesting writings and less usual phrases see the highlights section). There are also cryptograms present and simple chornograms (the most valuable one is the paraphrase of the Psalm 91 on the gravestone 147). Very interesting is also a Haskalic part of the cemetery; bilingual sings are either hebrew-czech or hebrew- german. A naivety of czech verses corresponds with Mr. Rakous´ imagination. Every – at least a little - sensitive reader has to appreciate not just „funeral poetry“ but also intellectual influence of non-jewish funeral diction. More we move closer to the present time, less commonly are Israel´s children being re-connected with their ancestors and more likely they are drawn to „ the eternal life“, until „they rest in peace“.
Symbology Again – generally speaking – we encounter clasical symbols in the lower (older) part of the cemetery. There are symbols of kohanim and of leviti assortmens and crowns of a good name. In the middle of 19th century they were enriched with a glimpse of parochet. There are also floral themes. As the most luxury one we probably consider a circumcision set displayed on the gravestone 081. You can see most of the symbols in our „Highlights“.
(translated by: tomatom)