Ossuaries, catacombs, bone chapels… Call them whatever you want but those places are actually superb constructions of bones.
There was a time when the use of bones of a deceased person was a legitimate way for religious institutions to honor the dead. Thus the catacombs and ossuaries in churches were built. These places were especially helpful when the plague raged in Europe to store the bones while the place was rare in cemeteries.
In the pictures below, you will see that these bones were used for practical and artistic way. Walls, pillars, towers, altars and even chandeliers were indeed built using bones and skulls. These came monks, nobles, common people victims of disease and even children. However, the body part that was mostly preserved skull was much more solid.
Many people find odd visit ossuaries while visiting a museum or any building but exploring the catacombs is not necessarily morbid. This can indeed give goosebumps but it is also a fascinating way to learn about the history of the city and the place in question.
Chapel of Skulls in Kudowa Zdroj, Czermna, Poland
Capela Dos Ossos, Évora, Portugal
Sedlec Ossuary, Kutna Hora, Czech Republic
Catacombs of the Basilica of San Francisco, Lima, Peru
Santiago Apostle Church, Peru
The Ossuary Municipal, Paris, France
Ossuary of St. Jacques Church, Brno, Czech Republic
Santa Maria Della Concezione Dei Cappuccini, Rome, Italy