Charles John Birkbeck (1822 – 1824)
Flower Festival 2012:
Arranged by Rosemary Loyd in memory of Paul Vivian Overy.
The Birkbecks are an old established Quaker family of distinction . The surname is derived from the little river Birkbeck (i.e. birch-stream), arising in Westmoreland.
These flowers commemorate the short life of Charles John Birkbeck, born in December 1822 to Dr. George Birkbeck and his wife second wife, Anna Margaret (nee Gardner), who were married in Hampstead Parish Church in 1817. There is no public record of the cause of Charles’ death in August 1824, aged twenty months. (Birth and Death certificates had yet to be introduced). The child is interred (together with an unnamed infant sister) in a large family tomb in the Additional Burial Ground.
Charles’ surviving siblings distinguished themselves in academic and literary circles, following in the footsteps of their parents. Dr. Birkbeck was a renown physician, scientist, philanthropist and founder of the London Mechanics’ Institution ( now Birkbeck College) and promoted the foundation of London University (now University College, London).
The flowers include the ‘Charles de Mills’ rose, chosen for its Christian name and symbolizing love and eternal life: the white ‘Guardian’ delphinium, which colour is said to represent the garment of angels. Also gypsophila (‘baby’s breath’), nigella (‘love in a mist’); silver birch; ivy (for evergreen memory).
This page was last updated on July 22nd, 2012.