Cemeteries during the Victorian era served a purpose similar to parks in contemporary society. They were places for recreation and the enjoyment of nature, serving as manicured arboretums, as well as places of interment. Appreciation of architecture and sculpture through mausoleums and memorial artwork was also a key aspect, not everyone could make it to a museum, but there was undoubtedly an area for burial nearby.
The acknowledged first “garden” or recreational cemetery—and the most famous due to those interred there, from Jim Morrison to Oscar Wilde—is Pere Lachaise in Paris. In America, Mount Auburn cemetery in Massachusetts was the first example of a landscaped cemetery complete with arboretum, pond, and impressive memorial sculpture.
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