October 31, 2015

Sedlec Ossuary, Czech Republic

Photograph by Carlo Acenas, Tandem

A Catholic ossuary in Sedlec, Czech Republic, holds the bones of at least 40,000 people. A fashionable burying place for Bohemian nobility, the charnel house was soon overcrowded. In 1870 a woodcarver was commissioned to use the bones for artistic purposes—so he fashioned bells, chalices, and candelabra out of them.

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