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Facts about Mausoleums


For those who want to go out in style, the option is above-ground burial or a mausoleum crypt, which can be an expensive cemetery property.

In early times, mausoleums were tombs of great beauty, such as the Taj Mahal, built by the Indian ruler Shah Jehan for his beloved wife, Mumtaz-i-Mahal. Constructed in white marble in the shape of an octagon, it's 70 feet high and 130 feet in length and width. Incomparable.

And the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus, one of the ancient wonders of the world, was built by Queen Artemesia in 353 B.C. as a memorial to her husband, Mausolus, and from which the word mausoleum is derived.

Today, mausoleums, usually two to three stories high, vary in size from a crypt for one solitary casket to six to twelve of a single family. An exception: Nashville's Woodlawn Mausoleum, referred to as the "poor man's Taj Mahal," towers at 20 stories with room for 129,000 bodies.

Some cemeteries such as Cincinnati's Spring Grove, have both indoor and outdoor mausoleums with a price tag of $4,250 per space in the Memorial Mausoleum to $4,950 in the Lakeside Mausoleum.

Cost depends on the location; eye level crypts are more expensive since family members don't have to stoop when they visit. Those who choose mausoleums cite comfort and convenience for year-round visitation and the ultimate in protection from the elements.


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