Angel of Death Victorious: The Legend of Cleveland’s Haserot’s Angel

Haserot's Angel in Lakeview Cemetery, Cleveland, Ohio (Image: Tim Evanson. Haserot’s Angel in Lakeview Cemetery, Cleveland, Ohio)

The official name for the haunting monument that stands over the tomb of Francis Haserot in Cleveland‘s Lakeview Cemetery is The Angel of Death Victorious. More colloquially, however, it’s known as The Weeping Angel due to the black stains that streak eerily down its face, making it look as though the statue itself is crying.

The Angel of Death Victorious (Image: Tony. The Angel of Death Victorious)

Seated on the tomb, what’s also known as Haserot’s Angel holds an inverted torch, snuffing out the flame in an image that represents the inevitable triumph of death over the living. Not surprisingly, Roadtrippers reported that the symbolic statue was the source of many tales of ghostly goings-on. Others have even claimed to see the angel move or cry, strange reports that have all the hallmarks of an urban legend.

Herman N. Matzen's Weeping Angel (Image: Tony. Herman N. Matzen’s Weeping Angel)

Needless to say, the real explanation for The Angel of Death Victorious’s appearance is much more worldly. The statue is cast from bronze, and its surface has been slowly discoloured over the years by moisture that collects on its surface and then drips to the ground, as a result of gravity rather than any paranormal activity.

The Weeping Angel statue guards the family tomb of Francis Haserot (Image: Tim Evanson. The statue guards the family tomb of Francis Haserot)

The Weeping Angel was crafted by Danish-born sculptor Herman N. Matzen, whose striking work can be seen all over the city. Born in 1861, he settled with his family in Detroit, Michigan. After studying in Europe Matzen returned to the United States, spending his adult life in Cleveland, Ohio.

Signed by Herman N. Matzen, 1923 (Image: Tim Evanson. Signed by Herman N. Matzen, 1923)

The sculptor, who died in 1938, is buried in the same cemetery that’s watched over by his enigmatic Weeping Angel, a statue with a powerful ethereal beauty steeped in local legend, irrespective of the rational explanation behind its eerie reputation.

Matzen's statue is the source of many local legends (Image: Tim Evanson. Matzen’s statue is the source of many local legends)

Read Next: Discover More Enigmatic Statues Around the World


About the author: Debra Kelly




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