In Roman epitaphs we meet with the formula tumulum faciendum curavit, meaning the grave and its monument; and on the inscribed monumental stones placed over the early Christian graves of Gaul and Britain the phrase in hoc tumulo jacet expresses the same idea.
Pope Damasus himself displayed great zeal in adapting the catacombs to their new purpose, restoring the works of art on the walls, and renewing the epitaphs over the graves of the martyrs.
The palm branch, which is also of frequent occurrence, is not an indisputable mark of the last resting-place of a martyr, being found in connexion with epitaphs of persons dying natural deaths, or those prepared by persons in their lifetime, as well as in those of little children, and even of pagans.
Monumental epitaphs record the purchase of a grave from the fossores, in many cases during the lifetime of the individual, not unfrequently stating the price.
Epitaphs of members of the Flavian family have been found here, and others stating that they are put up " Ex Indulgentia Flaviae Domitillae Vespasiani Neptis."
The loculi were intact and the epitaphs still in their places, so that " they form a kind of museum, in which the development, the formulae, and the symbolic figures of Christian epigraphy, from its origin to the end of the 3rd or 4th century, can be notified and contemplated, not in artificial specimens as in the Lateran, but in the genuine and living reality of their original condition."
The only tomb here was a sarcophagus, of which the broken front bears the letters which show it to have been the epitaph of one of the Acilian family: - Acilio Glabrioni Filio In the vicinity are fragments of the epitaphs of Manius Acilius and Priscilla, of Quintus Acilius and Caia Acilia in Greek, another Greek inscription " Acilius Rufinus mayest thou live in God."
He also wrote many letters, verses and epitaphs, including those of Duke Arichis and of many members of the Carolingian family.
Some of the letters are published with the Historia Langobardorum in the Monumenta; the poems and epitaphs edited by E.
Of Enfidaville is Henshir Fraga (anc. Uppenna), where are ruins of a large fortress and of a church in which were found mosaics with epitaphs of various bishops and martyrs.
There are material relics of his church, bearing the Christian monogram, and there are stones with Latin epitaphs; these objects are wholly unlike the Irish crosses and inscriptions of the Gaelic church.
The cemetery was naturally associated with the legend of St Ursula; and, this identification once accepted, it is not unlikely that when more careful investigations revealed male skeletons and tombstones bearing the names of men, other and more definite epitaphs were invented to reconcile the old traditions with the facts of such a damaging discovery.
For these epitaphs, with others of a humbler kind, were brought before St Elizabeth to be identified in her ecstatic converse with St Verena, her cousin St Ursula, and others.
For the relations between Bacon and Ben Jonson see The Tale of the Shakespeare Epitaphs by Francis Bacon (New York, 1888); for Bacon's poetical gifts see an article in the Fortnightly Review (March 1905).
He also drew up a list of the epitaphs in Westminster Abbey, which was issued as Reges, Reginae, Nobiles et alii in ecclesia collegiata Beati Petri Westmonasterii sepulti.