As places to mark your exit from this life go, Recoleta Cemetery in Buenos Aires isn’t bad. In fact, it’s considered one of the most beautiful Cities of the Dead in the World.
The streets of the Recoleta necropolis run for miles. Some are broad and leafy, others narrow and claustrophobic. The cemetery covers an area of 14 acres and contains over 6400 tombs and mausoleums. Even a brief tour of just some of its highlights with our guide Pablo Piera took us a couple of hours
There are many tales of partnership played out in the cemetery, some good, some bad some ugly…
Good: General Luis María Campos was a the founder of the Escuela Superior de Guerra (Superior School of War). If I remember the story correctly, the lady kneeling down to the left of his monument is his wife, welcoming him with a bunch of flowers.
Bad: Salvador María del Carril was Argentina’s first Vice President and has an ornate tomb in Recoleta. Unfortunately, he and his wife, Tiburcia, did not exit this world as partners. So when she died, 15 years after him, she had a bust of herself placed so that she could forever have her back turned to him.
Ugly: Ramón Lorenzo Falcón became chief of Argentina’s Federal Police in 1906. During his time in office, he developed a reputation for his repressive (and sometimes lethal) tactics against protestors. He and his executive secretary, Juan Alberto Lartigau, were assassinated by a homemade bomb in 1909. Partners in life, their graves now stand side-by-side in one corner of the cemetery.
Really Ugly: South American politics in the 1860s was a messy affair. And Paraguay’s decision to march its army through Argentina on its way to Uruguay, despite Argentina refusing to give permission, turned out to be disastrous. Argentina partnered up with Brazil and Uruguay, and even conservative estimates state that within five years a full half of Paraguay’s population was dead. The Panteón de los Guerreros del Paraguay commemorates the partnership between the three allies.
Good: Liliana Crociati de Szaszak was sadly killed in an avalanche in Innsbruck, Austria, in 1970, when only 26 years old. When her dog, Sabú, died some years later, a statue of Liliana and Sabú was added to the young woman’s memorial. Since then, a story has grown up that if you rub Sabú’s nose, you’ll one day return to Buenos Aires.
This post is inspired by this week’s photo challenges of Exits from Ailsa of Where’s My Backpack?, Partners from Michelle of the Daily Post, After from Hugh of Hugh’s News and Views, and Jo’s Monday Walk.
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