30 April 2012

William Makepeace Thackeray's Grave: Kensal Green Cemetery #2

BORN JULY 18th 1811,
DIED DECEMBER 24th 1863.
DIED DECEMBER 18th 1864, AGED 72,

Wipidedia gives an interesting paragraph about Thackeray's death:

'His health worsened during the 1850s and he was plagued by a recurring stricture of the urethra that laid him up for days at a time. He also felt he had lost much of his creative impetus. He worsened matters by over-eating and drinking and avoiding exercise, though he enjoyed horseback riding (he kept a horse). He could not break his addiction to spicy peppers, further ruining his digestion. On 23 December 1863, after returning from dining out and before dressing for bed, Thackeray suffered a stroke and was found dead in his bed in the morning. His death at the age of fifty-two was entirely unexpected, and shocked his family, friends, and reading public. An estimated 7000 people attended his funeral at Kensington Gardens. He was buried on 29 December at Kensal Green Cemetery, and a memorial bust sculpted by Marochetti can be found in Westminster Abbey.'

This impressive monument is by Puyenbroach. It contains the painter François Simonau, his step-daughter Emma Soyer, and her husband the famous chef Alexis Benoit Soyer (of 'Soyer's Magic Stove'), on whom Thackeray based Mirobolant in Pendennis.

Savannah, Georgia: William Thackeray: Literary Landmarks of the Southern United States, #23

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