Military Memorial in Cemetery at Tuebingen/Bebenhausen

Pictures and text by Mark R. Hatlie

This memorial to the village fallen in the two world wars is fairly typical. The setting - within the walls at the small cemetery of the Bebenhausen castle outside Tuebingen - is not.

The memorial has pride of place in the small cemetery. This is the view from the main gate. The cemetery is located right below one of the remaining sections of the old wall.
The words on the cross read, We died for you! The theology of sacrifice is often used in these types of memorials, but the beneficiary of the redemption is usually an abstraction - "the Fatherland". The soldier on the battlefield who gives his life for the nation is compared with the Christ who died on the cross for the redemption of mankind. Here, however, the beneficiary is still collective - the "you" is plural in German ("euch"), but more personal.
The closeup pictures show that the outside plaques for World War Two were added later. But the same style was kept. The name is followed by the date and location of death and the age of the soldier in years. The plaques for the Second World War are smaller although there are more names. The top of the left World War One plaque reads, For our sons fallen in the World War 1914-1918. As usual, there is no consideration for the violence of 1919, whether because there were no fallen from this location or because it doesn't count in German consciousness as part of the war.
The top of the right-hand World War One plaque reads, Dedicated by the thankful home congregation. On this side, there are eight names from each war. There is space left over for World War Two. Perhaps there were men who were missing and assumed dead who were to be added later, as the case may be.

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Mark R. Hatlie (ViSdM)
Im Feuerhägle 1
D-72072 Tübingen

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