If you have been tasked with arranging a memorial marker for a loved one who has passed away, it can be difficult to decide what symbols best encapsulate the deceased’s passions or personality. Luckily, Legacy Headstones provides years of experience in handcrafting headstones, and we are well-acquainted with gravestone symbols. We collected some of the most popular symbols that have been used throughout the last several centuries to provide you with the inspiration you need to finalize your design.
Acanthus Leaf: A herbaceous plant or shrub with bold flower spikes and spiny decorative leaves. Was popularly used in Greek cemeteries and, later, as a symbol of peace in the Garden of Eden.
Alpha Omega: The first and last letters of the Greek alphabet, which can be defined as the beginning and end of life.
Anchor: Commonly used as a disguised cross in early Christianity and later became a symbol of hope and resolve. In modern times, the anchor is used as an occupational symbol for people who worked in sea-faring industries.
Angels: The symbolic agents of God and spirituality, often depicted pointing towards heaven in all types of poses.
Arch: A symbol for the expansiveness of sky and the ceremony of renewal in numerous cultures.
Bible: Represents the final resting place of a religious individual or cleric.
Bird in Flight: A symbol for the flight of the soul, eternal life, and peace.
Book: A symbol of faith, knowledge, or learning.
Butterfly: A symbol of the resurrection of Christ and the three stages of life.
Candle: A symbol of the spirit or the soul. A candle with a flame is representative of eternal life.
Cherubs: Often regarded as angelic and divine to represent the graves of children.
Circle: An ancient symbol for eternity, or that which has no beginning and end.
Clasped Hands: A widely used symbol for partnership or unity in life and death.
Columns: A symbol of nobility or a portal to the spiritual world.
Cross: The crucifix is an enduring symbol of religious faith, love, goodness, and fear.
Crown: A symbol of reward and glory.
Dove: An important Christian symbol that represents the Holy Spirit.
Eagle: A symbol of courage or military involvement.
Fish: A symbol of religious faith.
Fleur-de-lis: A stylized lily flower with three petals that represents passion.
Fruits: A symbol of abundance and plenty.
Garland: An ancient Greek symbol of victory, memory, and eternal life.
Grapes: A symbol for the blood of Christ.
Heart: A symbol of love, mortality, courage, and intelligence.
Horse: A symbol of courage or generosity. A horseshoe can be used to represent protection from evil.
Lamb: Often used as a symbol for a child’s final resting place, because it represents purity and innocence.
Rose: At every stage, a rose can represent a life taken too soon, as well as love, beauty, and hope.
Serpent: A symbol of spiritual striving or everlasting life in Heaven.
Star: An important symbol of Celtic, Christian, and Jewish origin.
Sun: Depending on the cycle depicted, a sun can represent death or resurrection.
Tree: Often interpreted as the Tree of Life or Christ’s universal love.
Trumpets: A symbol of renewed life and victory.
Urn: An ancient Greek symbol of mourning.