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The Outcast Dead: Cross Bones Graveyard

GUEST, Paul Slade 09 Nov 13 - 07:37 AM
Bonnie Shaljean 09 Nov 13 - 07:58 AM
GUEST, Paul Slade 09 Nov 13 - 08:39 AM
GUEST, Paul Slade 15 Nov 13 - 11:05 AM
GUEST,CS 15 Nov 13 - 12:02 PM
GUEST,CS 15 Nov 13 - 12:04 PM
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Subject: The Outcast Dead: Cross Bones Graveyard
From: GUEST, Paul Slade
Date: 09 Nov 13 - 07:37 AM

http://www.planetslade.com/cross-bones.html

PlanetSlade's second free book went up online this week at the link above. It's a 70,000-word history of Southwark's remarkable Cross Bones burial ground, and here's what it's all about:

South London's Cross Bones graveyard began life as a dumping ground for the Bishop of Winchester's dead whores.

For over four centuries, this Southwark burial ground's neighbourhood was home to London's legalised brothels, policed and taxed by the 12th century's Bishop William Gifford and his successors. Nicknamed "Winchester Geese" to reflect the Bishop's role as their master, the girls who worked these brothels were nonetheless refused burial in consecrated ground. Their bodies ended up at Cross Bones instead.

Since then, the horribly over-stuffed site has been used for the parish's pauper burials, pressed into service as a plague pit and targeted by London's most notorious gang of resurrection men. The surrounding streets have hosted Shakespeare's own theatre, the Victorians' most notorious slums and the wildest acid house parties of the 1990s.

Today, this medieval burial ground is a shrine to our own era's outcast dead, where 50,000 people a year attend regular vigils led by a shamanic local writer and attach their own offerings to the site gates. All this makes Cross Bones one of the most fascinating, yet least understood, graveyards in London.


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Subject: RE: The Outcast Dead: Cross Bones Graveyard
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 09 Nov 13 - 07:58 AM

WOW Paul - thanks. I am *so* downloading those as soon as I post this. (Mind if I blurb it on Twitter? Assume not, but please say so here if you do.)

Interesting BBC article on Crossbones:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-20489273


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Subject: RE: The Outcast Dead: Cross Bones Graveyard
From: GUEST, Paul Slade
Date: 09 Nov 13 - 08:39 AM

I don't mind at all, Bonnie - in fact I'd be delighted. Like all internet writers I'm very dependent on social media and word-of-recommendation to find readers, so any help spreading the word is always much appreciated.

I hope you enjoy the book - I certainly had a lot of fun writing it.


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Subject: RE: The Outcast Dead: Cross Bones Graveyard
From: GUEST, Paul Slade
Date: 15 Nov 13 - 11:05 AM

The first reviews are in.

"The Outcast Dead is a fantastically well researched history of Southwark's Cross Bones graveyard, which also works as a history of England as seen from the perspective of the poor souls who lived and died (early) in the small surrounding area from pre-Roman times up to the beginning of the 20th century. It makes a great case for the importance to cities (and to the lives of those who live in them) of these neglected, seemingly unimportant places. There's a lot of misery and horror in this book, but there's a good deal of wonder, too." - A. D. Mogg, Amazon UK.

"Read Paul Slade's excellent book." - David Orme, London Burial Grounds.


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Subject: RE: The Outcast Dead: Cross Bones Graveyard
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 15 Nov 13 - 12:02 PM

The largest graveyard in Britain. A bit of real people's heritage, it's telling that the now owners British Rail were allowed to concrete it over and fence it off from the public while the old piles of aristo's get their pads preserved and funded by tax payers.


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Subject: RE: The Outcast Dead: Cross Bones Graveyard
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 15 Nov 13 - 12:04 PM

Also, great job Paul.


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