Certain architectural wonders of the world hold some of the most insane secrets. You can look at these structures and their beauty and not know what is really hiding there. When you go inside, what do you expect to find? Palatial furnishings? A crazy party? How about this: you walk into some of these beautiful achievements in human architecture only to find that it is just an impressive burial ground?
That’s right, these beautiful structures are homes to the dead.
The tomb of the Prophet Muhammad sits beneath the green dome of the Masjid-i-Nabvi, or “Mosque of the Prophet” in Medina, the second-holiest city in Islam. Some additions were appended since its construction, but it remains more or less the same as when it was first built.
Capuchin monks mummified the bodies of the dead, dressed them up in everyday clothing and then put them on the monastery walls for display in this Palermo, Italy monestary. Apparently, getting entombed was quite a status symbol in the Capuchin monastery. Prominent citizens of the town would ask to be preserved in certain clothing and even have the clothes changed on a regular basis according to contemporary fashion!
This English cathedral is home to the remains of many literary geniuses. Geoffrey Chaucer, William Blake, Lord Byron, Charles Dickens, John Keats, Rudyard Kipling, William Wordsworth, Jane Austen and the Brontë sisters, are either buried or commemorated here.
Recently featured in the film, As Above, So Below, the catacombs in Paris have an interesting history. Paris suffered from diseases caused by improper burials and mass graves in church cemeteries. Local authorities decided that they would remove thousands of bones and place them stacked in the abandoned underground quarries.
Paris, France is the home to this impressive mausoleum. Originally a 17th century hospital and retirement home for war veterans, Les Invalides now houses a military museum and the tomb of Napolean Bonaparte, as well as other French military figures.
How can we deny that we treat our entertainers like royalty? Founded in 1906, the Forest Lawn Mausoleum is the burial place of choice for many American entertainment greats. Clark Gable, Walt Disney, Lucille Ball, Nat King Cole, Carole Lombard and Humphrey Bogart are all buried here.
This insane Chinese mausoleum dates back t0 210 BCE, was discovered in the underground necropolis of the first Emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang. To date, 8,000 soldiers, 130 chariots with 520 horses and 150 cavalry horses, all life-size, were uncovered.
This famous Roman piece of architecture was originally a temple to the gods, but used as a tomb and church since the Renaissance. Buried here are two Italian kings, the painters Raphael and Annibale Carracci, and the composer Arcangelo Corelli.
The Toraja people in Sulawesi, Indonesia have an interesting burial arrangement. They bury their dead in a stone cave carved out of a rocky cliff. A wood-carved effigy called a tau tau, carved with the likeness of the dead person, is then placed in the balcony of the tomb to represent the dead and watch over their remains.
It took nearly 500 years to contstruct the burial site of Egyptian Pharaohs and powerful nobles, from the 16th to 11th century BCE. It includes the “cursed” tomb of King Tutankhamun.
Getting buried in the ground doesn’t seem quite right anymore, eh? You’re starting to want a more lavish burial plot. Well, you better start saving some money is you want to a king’s burial, because it costs a king’s ransom.