Thursday, April 25, 2013

"Removed by a Dysentery"...and Ultrarunning

 [image credit Vast Public Indifference]

I'm on a 2-day roll with the body waste theme, it seems.

Via Boing Boing (always a great read for the inner geek in all of us), we land on the blog Vast Public Indifference, where we find a great series of posts on the various euphemisms used for "died" on tombstones dated pre-1825.

Of the 101 euphemisms, I gotta go with the one pictured above and reproduced below as being at least in my top five: "...removed by a dysentery," although "Rose Upon the Horizon of Perfect Endless Day" has a certain ring to it.  See text in red below:

Memento mori
Widow of CAPT. CALEB
KENRICK left her
pleasant habitation
in Newton and come to
her Daughter Dana's
in Groton, on account
of ye civil War; and Sept. 5.
1775 AE 76 was remov
ed by a dysentery to that
place where ye wicked cease
from troubling and ye weary
are at rest.
Here are the first 25 of 101 euphemisms for "died":

Part 1: Died
Part 2: Departed This Life
Part 3: Deceased
Part 4: Entred Apon an Eternal Sabbath of Rest
Part 5: Fell a Victim to an Untimely Disease
Part 6: Departed This Transitory Life
Part 7: Killed by the Fall of a Tree
Part 8: Left Us
Part 9: Obit
Part 10: Slain by the Enemy
Part 11: Departed This Stage of Existence
Part 12: Went Rejoycing Out of This World
Part 13: Submiting Her Self to ye Will of God
Part 14: Fell Asleep
Part 15: Changed a Fleeting World for an Immortal Rest
Part 16: Fell Asleep in the Cradle of Death
Part 17: Fell Aslep in Jesus
Part 18: Was Still Born
Part 19: Innocently Retired
Part 20: Expired
Part 21: Perished in a Storm
Part 22: Departed from This in Hope of a Better Life
Part 23: Summoned to Appear Before His Judge
Part 24: Liv'd About 2 Hours
Part 25: Rose Upon the Horizon of Perfect Endless Day
Again, go here for the complete list.
Oh, and the link to Ultrarunning?  Many posts here have concerned themselves with the notion of immortality (here's one that's kinda representative).  I guess if I were to try to make the case, seems to me that our happiest hours here on earth are what I might imagine immortality would be like (of course, it's just as likely to be simply nothingness).  So for me, it'd be endless happy hours running in the backcountry.

Or, the easier connection?  Drink the wrong water in the backcountry and you, too, will enjoy the pleasures of dysentery.  If it's real severe (i.e., fatal), you could get a really cool tombstone with a suitable message just like that above: "removed by a dysentery."


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