Spring came with a couple of news in the “grave matters” sector: The Mütter Museum and the Order of the Good Death websites got a very nice (inter)facelift, while The Chirurgeon’s Apprentice announced a new project- “Grave Matters“.
To start things first, I do not really recollect how the old Mütter Musem’s website looked like, but the new one is certainly living up to the expectations of this one of a kind collection of anatomical specimens and medical instruments. The visitor is warned from the beginning: “Are You Ready to Be Disturbingly Informed?”, and than (s)he is given the option of exploring “our full Civil War era amputation kit”, of reading about the Hyrtle craniological collection or seeing what exhibitions might be on display. What I love about this website, as gruesome as it might sound, is the play of words applied to the real stories, as can be seen in some of the captions: “Any thoughts?” (on A wet specimen jar containing brain pieces), or “Two heads are better than one” (and I leave this to you to discover on the website).
The Order of the Good Death “is a group of funeral industry professionals, academics, and artists exploring ways to prepare a death phobic culture for their inevitable mortality.” It is not quite a website for the fainthearted (it was founded by a mortician after all), but you can find some interesting and not so well-known death-related things: from movies to cemeteries (e.g. the Kerepesi cemetery in Budapest), to a decomposing memento mori and the “ask a mortician topic”.
(this “memento mori” thing actually reminds me of a joke: a roman enters a bar and asks for a “Martinus”, so the bartender says “You mean a Martini, right?”, but the guy answers angrily “If I would have wanted 2, I would have told you so!”).
To get back to the serious matters, the well known (and awesome if I may say so) The Chirurgeon’s Apprentice announces the launch of a new project, “Grave Matters“. As you will see, they are grave indeed, as this will be a joint adventure of Dr Lindsey Fitzharris and Chris Skaife (The Ravenmaster at the Tower of London) into the “fates of Britain’s wickedest criminals, from the 12th to the 20th century“. I reckon the appropriate word for such an endeavour (which has as a kind of a motto “Digging up the dead, one body at a time”), can not be anything but the american “Wicked” 🙂
With all these interesting news, it sounds like there is a lively spring ahead of us!