Yeo Siew Keng (Bukit Brown)

The tomb of Madam Yeo Siew Keng is one of the most unique and beautiful tomb in Bukit Brown. It has 5 lions and colloquially known as the 5 cats tomb. The tomb is decorated with cut and paste mosaic sculptures or “jian nian (剪黏)” which consist fragments of different colours and shapes from ceramic bowls. On the headstone is also engraved that she is an 18th generation Lim. 

Madam Yeo Siew Keng passed away at the age of 41 on 3 December 1936. Listed on her tomb are name of his children;
Sons: Lim Sze Hee, Lim Sze Quee, Lim Sze Jin
Daughters: Lim Poh Geok, Lim Poh Tin

Nearby Madam Yeo Siew Keng is the tomb of her husband, Lim Seet Sam and her son, Lim Sze Quee.

Mrs. Lim Seet Sam nee Madam Yeo Siew Keng 



"Five Cats Tomb" and its material culture 

Jian Nian (剪黏) is the technique where colourful ceramic pieces are cut and pasted to form decorative patterns or motifs and in the case of the tomb of Mrs. Lim Seet Sam nee Madam Yeo Siew Keng used to adorn the lions (5 of them) and the rest of decorations of the tomb. The artisans where mainly from the Fujian and Choazhou regions (Southern China) and used this decorative techniques for roofs of temple and houses of rich merchant. Some of them migrated to this region and continued their trade. It is hard manual work as the craftsman need to use sharp scissors to cut ceramic bowls into fragments of different shapes and sizes and arrange and paste them on the sculptured plaster so to make them stand out. So it is not surprising not many such sculptures can be found in Bukit Brown cemetery and it is likely to be costly. Another tomb, that of Mr. Lim Kow Nah has also some jian nan pieces. 

Heart shape mosaic on the top of headstone with color paper 



The largest "cat" (lion decorated with colorful ceramic pieces)




Family


Husband: Lim Seet Sam
Lim Seet Sam passed away on 13 October 1965. Listed on his tomb are the name of his children;
Sons: Lim Sze Hee, Lim Sze Quee, Lim Sze Jin, Lim Boon Ghee, Lim Boon Tock, Lim Boon Ann, Lim Boon Sheng
Daughters: Lim Poh Geok, Lim Poh Tin, Lim Kwee Geok
His son, Lim Sze Quee is buried beside him. On his son tomb, it is listed as 19th generation Lim. This means that Lim Seet Sam is a 18th generation Lim (although there is no engraving on the tomb that mentions that).

Son: Lim Sze Hee  / Lim Soo Hee
Lim Soo Hee alias Lim Sze Hee passed away at the age of 80 on 3 April 1992. Listed on his obituary notice are:
Wife: Ong Soo Lian
Sons: Dr. Lim Hisn Loh, Tony Lim Thonh Kwee, Sam Lim Kim Seng
Daughter: Nancy Lim Swee Tin
Daughter-in-law: Dr. Wee Honh Neo
Son-in-law: Charles Loke Heng Cheong
Grandsons: Lim Ki Ken, Loke Shen Fai, Loke Shen Yin
Granddaughters: Lim Hui Min, Lim Li Chern . 

Son: Lim Sze Quee 
Lim Sze Quee passed away at the age of 32 on 8 August 1955. On his tomb, engraved are the words:
19th generation Lim.

Son: Lim Sze Jin
Lim Sze Jin passed away at the age of 77 on 20 May 2011. Listed on his obituary notice are;
Wife: Lee Hong Kiaw
Sons: Lim Soon Tien; Lim Soon Hock, Adam ;  Lim Soon Heng, Alan
Daughter: Lim Swee Lee Shirley
Daughters-in-law: Wong Peck Har, Geraldine ; Heng Swee Ping, Sharon ; Lim Foong Yee, Shirleen
Son-in-law: Tan Gek Hong, Kelvin
Grandchildren: Lim Qun Jie, Gordon ; Lim Hui Xian, Zoey ; Lim Ai Lin ; Lim Yan Ling, Eileen ; Lim Wei Ting, Elaine ; Lim Hong Hui, Eugene ; Lim Sydney , Lim Hoi Mun, Aloysius ; Tan Wei Bin, Terence ; Tan Wei Xuan, Terry. 

Location of tomb

 Yeo Siew Keng / Yeo Siew Khing tomb is located at Block 4 Section A, plot 770. 


References 

Mosaic Sculptures. By Ang Yik Han (website). All Things Bukit Brown. 

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