Do you know what the symbols in this crypt mean?
May 9, 2008 1:28 AM   Subscribe

In the Cimitero Monumentale in Milan lies a crypt of the Galimberti family. Cuboid in shape, it bears numerous engravings which appear scientific in nature. I can make out what appears to be smashing particles, parabolas, lenses, and spirals. Is there a hidden meaning to all of this? A message? Code?

Here are some photos: Full, Front, Door Detail, Left, Right, and Back.

If you need bigger images just let me know.
posted by lorbus to Science & Nature (8 answers total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
Well, the back has a classic 7-circuit labyrinth. That's all I recognise.
posted by 5MeoCMP at 3:35 AM on May 9, 2008

Rambaldi device.
posted by tim_in_oz at 4:43 AM on May 9, 2008

It seems to me that the labrynth on the back could be an analog of the human brain.

Curious: Are the glass inserts on the back merely decorative panels set in the stone, or are they windows for looking inside the crypt (assuming no one's going to be looking out)?
posted by dinger at 5:07 AM on May 9, 2008

My guess is that one or more of the family members sometime in the last 30 years was a particle physicist who hired an artist to represent multiple theories. The image at the top of the front panel looks like a stylized representation of a particle accelerator, the left panel seems to show cosmic ray decay chains in the lower-right corner, and the labyrinth on the back is an ancient mystical symbol. The stylized e on the right could be a reference to Euler's constant. Some of the diagrams remind me of Feynman diagrams.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 5:44 AM on May 9, 2008

the designs to the right of the 'e' look like representations of crystal structure to me.
posted by ArgentCorvid at 6:48 AM on May 9, 2008

I found here that it was made in 1984 by a Vincenzo Ferrari, milanese painter.
posted by _dario at 7:20 AM on May 9, 2008

@dinger: The glasses are windows. I looked inside and it was too dark to photograph but I made out more symbols, this time in gold leaf on a dark background.

@KirkJobSluder: Sounds like great guesses. Is this cool or what?

@ArgentCorvid: They do indeed.

@_dario: Thanks for that link, I think it'll make it easier to look for more info.

Thanks for the responses so far... It just keeps getting better!
posted by lorbus at 8:32 AM on May 9, 2008

There's an Italian physicist named "M. Galimberti." You'll find him/her easily by Google. No idea if there's a connection.
posted by JimN2TAW at 12:11 PM on May 9, 2008

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