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The Cemetery
Koltur, kirkjugarðurin (vatnlitsmynd eftir Poul Jensen)

A very important cultural heritage in the outfield is the beautiful cemetery surrounded by a stone fence, about 15 x 15 metres, the cemetery under Kolturshamari.

The cemetery was built around 1846, when measles were rife, and the first person buried here was a child. It is said that from the Reformation to 1846, the dead were transported off the island and buried in Kirkjubø, where the parish church and cemetery were. This meant that people could often lie on a bier for a long time, as it was not always possible to get off the island because of heavy surfs, especially during the winter. The cemetery under Kolturshamari can therefore be recognized as a sign of new thinking, compared to the traditions that followed with the Reformation.

About 40 people have been buried in the cemetery since 1848. The graves are not marked, and can only be observed as small tussocks. This was common in Faroese cemeteries, and the belief was that, "in death everyone is equal before God". The last person who was buried in the cemetery was Martin, farmer in Innar í Búð, who died in 1954. 

However, one of the graves in the cemetery was marked with a cross, namely the grave in the lower south-east corner. The cross was placed for a drowned man, who drifted ashore in 1888, and later was identified as Hálvdan from Sørvágur. The cross was placed in order to direct relatives to the grave. 

We do not know why the cemetery is situated so remotely and outside the stone fence. Some accounts say that the living were afraid that the dead would come back, and therefore wanted them buried further away.

Koltur kirkjugarðurin

Kirkjugarður í Koltri

Kirkjugarður í Koltri