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Tomb of James Rice

James Rice, eleven-time mayor of Waterford, oversaw periods of great prosperity during the fifteenth century. His tomb, shared with his wife Katherine Broun, was housed in its own chapel in the medieval cathedral, and since construction of this cathedral has been moved twice - occupying its current space since 1880. It is an important example of a cadaver monument, depicting the horror of death and the glory of saints. The centuries have taken their toll, rendering the Latin inscription difficult to decipher. A section reads ‘I am what you will be; I was what you are now’. Rice wished his tomb to be a reminder of the brevity of our earthly lives and the transient nature of fame, wealth, and power. To emphasise this, the tomb displays a badly decayed corpse crawling with worms and a frog feasting on the remains of his stomach. Figures of saints adorn the sides of the tomb.

Tomb of James Rice
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