Thieves have attempted to steal the ashes of psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud from a cemetery in north London.
The urn containing the ashes of Freud and his wife was left badly damaged after the break in between 31 December and 1 January at Hoop Lane Cemetery in Golders Green.
Detective Constable Daniel Candler called it a "despicable act by a callous thief".
"Even leaving aside the financial value of the irreplaceable urn and the historical significance of to whom it related; the fact that someone set out to take an object knowing it contained the last remains of a person defies belief," he added.
Anyone with information is asked to contact police on 0208 733 4525 or contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.