The Death and Grave Marker of Matthew Arnold

Matthew Arnold died on April 15th, 1888 from a heart attack. As a renowned poet and critic of sociocultural topics such as the intersection of faith and religion, it is interesting to note that a Bible verse is displayed on the grave marker he shares with his wife, Frances Lucy Arnold. The chosen verse is Psalm 97:11, which reads: "There is sprung up a light for the righteous; and joyful gladness for such as are true-hearted." The inclusion of a Bible verse on Arnold's grave is significant when considered in the context of Arnold's increased push for the moral purpose of the Church of England during the last decade of his life. Additionally, the positive and bright imagery of Psalm 97 might reveal how Arnold, at the end of his life, grows to believe that faith will return in a different form. The verse can therefore be read as potentially hopeful.


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