And Death Shall Have His Dominion

In New English Review Dalrymple shares his reactions to a recent visit, far from his first, to Pere Lachaise:

I prefer to wander at random among the 65,000 graves than seek out anyone in particular. When I was a child, the advertising slogan of the vulgar British Sunday newspaper, the News of the World (though of course it was not in those days nearly as vulgar as it was to become under the ownership of Mr Murdoch) was ‘All human life is there,’ and the same might be said, figuratively speaking, of Père-Lachaise. So inexhaustible is it, the cemetery I mean, that it would almost be a pleasure to reside there permanently were it not for the rather stringent residence qualifications. At the least it must be some slight consolation for the dying to know that they are to be buried there.

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