Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Tomb of the Unknown Soldier
In World War I, huge numbers of soldiers died without their remains being identified. The practice developed for nations to have a symbolic Tomb of the Unknown Soldier that represented those unidentified soldiers.
They usually contain the remains of a dead soldier who is unidentified, and is thought to be impossible to ever identify. Much work goes into trying to find a certain soldier, and to verify that it is indeed one of your own soldiers. The United Kingdom first buried an Unknown Warrior in Westminster Abbey in 1920, leading other nations to follow their example. Although memorials to unknown soldiers of previous wars (such as the 1866 memorial to the unknown dead of the American Civil War) predate the Westminster Abbey one, it started the current trend. The most famous tomb is that in France under the Arc de Triomphe that was installed in 1921 honoring the unknown dead of the First World War.
These tombs are also used to commemorate the unidentified fallen of later wars. Although monuments have been built as recently as 1982 in the case of Iraq, it is unlikely that any further ones will be constructed. Advances in DNA technology mean that even the tiniest fragment of bone is usually identifiable.
- Australia: the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra
- Austria: the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at the Heldenplatz in Vienna
- Belgium: the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is at the base of the Colonnade of the Congress in Brussels
- Canada: the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at the National War Memorial , Confederation Square , in Ottawa.
- Czech Republic: the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at the National Memorial on ikov (Vítkov) Hill in Prague
- France: the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier beneath the Arc de Triomphe in Paris
- Germany: the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is a former 19th century guard house, called Neue Wache in the street Unter den Linden, Berlin
- Greece: The Monument of the Unknown Soldier is in Syntagma Square (Constitution Square), Athens
- Iraq: The Monument of the Unknown Soldier is in Baghdad
- India: The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is under India Gate, New Delhi
- Indonesia: The Field of Honour is a memorial to unknown soldiers, and is in Bandung. There is also the Tomb of the Unknown (Dutch) Sailor in Kembang Kuning war cemetery in Surabaya.
- Italy: the Tomb of the Milite Ignoto is in Rome, piazza Venezia, in the Altare della Patria (Vittoriano)
- New Zealand: the Tomb of the Unknown Warrior is at the National War Memorial in Wellington
- Perú: the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in the Plaza Bolivar (Bolivar Square) in Lima it contains the remains of a soldier dead in 1881 during the War of the Pacific.
- Philippines: the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in the Libingan ng mga Bayani (Cemetary of Heroes) in Manila
- Poland: the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is in Marshall Józef Piłsudski Square in Warsaw
- Portugal: the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is in the Mosteiro da Batalha .
- Romania: the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is in Carol Park, Bucharest
- Russia: the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is in Alexander Park, Moscow
- Serbia and Montenegro: The Monument to the Unknown Hero is on Mt. Avala, Belgrade
- Ukraine: the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is in Dniepr Park, Kiev
- United Kingdom: the Tomb of the Unknown Warrior at Westminster Abbey in London
- United States: the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery, Virginia
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