C.S. Lewis is best known for his Chronicles of Narnia, with “The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe”, being a perennial childhood favourite. He’s buried in a small church graveyard, tucked away in what was probably once a village but has now been swallowed up into the Oxford suburbs.
A handy sign points you to where he lies, although it’s not too hard to find. A large slab marks the spot as opposed to a gravestone and Lewis shares his resting place with his brother, Warren.
Born and brought up in Ireland, C.S. Lewis came over to England on a scholarship with University College, Oxford. And for all his connection to Christianity, Lewis actually turned away from his faith as a young man, partly driven by his experiences in the trenches of the First World War.
He was a close friend of J.R.R. Tolkien (who’s buried not far away) and both worked in the Oxford University English department. They were also active members of the famous “Inklings” group.
A bachelor for most of his life, he did marry the American writer Joy Davidman Gresham in his later years. Initially a meeting of minds, their relationship developed into a romantic one, but sadly she died of cancer four years after they married.
In a weird convergence of events, C. S. Lewis died on the same day as both the assassination of President Kennedy and the death of of Aldous Huxley (whose grave I visited over here). Now that’s a heck of a day.
What do you think? Have you ever visited this place? Please share in the comments.
Interesting and informative post, Rachel. I didn’t know Lewis and Tolkien were contemporaries… and friends.
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