What Do You Want on YOUR Tombstone? 10 Famous Last Words, Epitaphs and Gravestones in Germany

“Oh those wacky Germans… not a terribly subtle folk, are they?”

“What do you want on your tombstone?”

We Americans all remember those old Tombstone Pizza commercials from the 1990s, but have you actually thought about the epitaph you want engraved on your own headstone? Even if you have no intention of being buried, having a grave, or even a headstone or marker of any sort, it’s still an intriguing concept to leave behind some final, lasting semblance of yourself — literally carved in stone — for everyone, generation after generation, to read and wonder to themselves, “What was that motherfucker thinking?”

Would you go for something loving and sentimental? Or are you more inclined toward the serious and sombre? I, for one, will be shooting for something hilarious. For example:

Robert Clay Allison
“He Never Killed a Man That Did Not Need Killing”

That’s real, by the way; Robert Clay Allison was a gunfighter who racked up an impressive body count before he was killed in a freak wagon accident in 1887. And I must say, morally dubious career choices aside, the man left behind one hell of an epitaph.

Here in Germany, I find myself strolling through graveyards with surprising frequency. (Hey, it’s not my fault they keep building U-Bahn stops right near these things.) I do love gallows humor though, and I think about death and dying way more than I probably should. Still, I have yet to find a German gravestone which really tickles my fancy. So, I just started taking pictures of these dreary things, opening up Photoshop on my computer and slapping my own sentiments right over the top. (And then praying the surviving family members don’t sue my ass for desecrating the final resting places of their loved ones.)

Please click one of the images below to start the slideshow:

Hit us up in the comments section below and let us know what YOU want on YOUR tombstone!

Thank you for reading and have a wonderful day!


18 thoughts

  1. In Germany they don’t keep the graves for longer than 25 years. I had to give up my dads gravesite and stone once my mom passed away as she wanted to be buried anonymously. (Meaning her ashes were buried in a big field with no plaque. Still ticks me off, but those were her wishes.) and his grave was just 23 years old, but because I was not able to looks after it living in Canada, they made me give it up. I swear a grave is just a community garden plot. Geesh. My mom used to plant flowers in the spring and cover it with evergreen branches in the fall. Such crazy traditions.


  2. Photoshop skills are A+. I think I’d go with:
    “If at first you don’t succeed, we have a lot in common.”


  3. These made me smile! On a side note, a Canadian friend is dating a German woman and she taught him the phrase “frisch gevögeltes Eichhörnchen” for the English term “looking freshly fucked.” I had to think of you and wondered if it was part of your repertoire yet. :)


  4. I have always loved German graveyards. They are such tranquil, green oases with old trees and old ladies lovingly taking care of their passed husbands’ graves. I find myself weirdly drawn to calculating age differences between spouses, mourn dead children, and obsess about the strangeness of German names.

    I was almost shocked at how little romantic American cemetaries are. Especially the rigid, geometric lines of unpersonal, interchangeable headstones are downright creepy. But then, I guess “creepy” is what graveyard designers would go for, right?

    Nice photoshopping there, if the chosen epitaphs weren’t in English they could easily pass as real :D


What do you think? We welcome your feedback!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.