Daily Archives: November 22, 2013

Did you know C. S. Lewis died Nov. 22, 1963?

Recently I have been reading C. S. Lewis – A Life: Eccentric Genius, Reluctant Prophet by Alister McGrath. He says that Warnie found his brother dead at the foot of his bed at 5:30 p.m. [in Oxford], “Friday, 22 November 1963.” Then comes this paragraph:

At that same time, President John F. Kennedy’s motorcade left Dallas’s Love Field Airport, beginning its journey downtown. An hour later, Kennedy was fatally wounded by a sniper. He was pronounced dead at Parkland Memorial Hospital. Media reports of Lewis’s death were completely overshadowed by the substantially more significant tragedy that unfolded that day in Dallas.

C. S. Lewis was buried in the churchyard of Holy Trinity, Headington Quarry, Oxford after a private, and very small service. Warnie chose a phrase from a Shakespearean calendar that was in their home back in Belfast at the time of their mother’s death in August 1908: “Men must endure their going hence.” The quotation is from Shakespeare’s King Lear.

The grave of C. S. Lewis. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

The grave of C. S. Lewis. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

McAlister suggests that a better epitaph might be one from Lewis’s own words,

a seed patiently waiting in the earth: waiting to come up a flower in the Gardner’s good time, up into the real world, the real waking. I suppose that our whole present life, looked back on from there, will seem only a drowsy half-waking. We are here in the land of dreams. But cock-crow is coming.

C. S. Lewis is appreciated by many for the Chronicles of Narnia. Others have found his popular apologetic writings helpful. More information, including photos, about sites associated with Lewis is available here.