Daffodils at Udny Cemetery, Aberdeenshire.

One of the cemeteries mentioned in the brilliant ‘A Scottish Graveyard Miscellany’. Behind the lovely yellow spring time flowers you are viewing a mort house. A mort house was employed in times when resurrectionists were at their peak. The mort house housed corpses for time enough until the bodies would have deteriorated, no longer be of use to anatomists, and therefore resurrectionists would not come a-digging. This mort house had a carousel inside, which, on rotation for two to three weeks, would be turned daily, adding new bodies as and when. Unfortunately for the dead of Udny, this mort safe came into use just as the need for mort houses, mortsafes, watchtowers and the like lessened as a new legislation was passed making it a lot easier for anatomists to obtain bodies – legally.

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