Former Cradle of Filth guitarist Stuart Anstis, who was a member of the group from 1995 through 1999, died on August 21, according to posts from his wife Antoinette and former bandmate Richard Walsh. No cause of death was cited; he was 48.

Antoinette wrote on the guitarist’s Facebook page, “Rest in Peace, you were too beautiful for this world me Lover.

“Nothing will ever be the same again, Love Always and ever your Antoinette

Until we meet again…”

Band founder Dani Filth wrote, also on Facebook: “It is with a deeply saddened heart that I have heard of the passing of my former guitarist Stuart Anstis at 48.

“Stuart -despite our eventual differences- was an amazingly talented guitarist who brought a real sense of magick to everything he wrote in Cradle Of Filth. For a long time he and I were bestest of friends living in a small village here in Suffolk and despite that relationship eventually changing, it did nothing to diminish the fan’s appreciation of his creative flair and talent right up to the present day.

“’Vempire’, ‘Dusk… and Her Embrace’ (though written mostly by former members, Stuart played all the guitars on this album), ‘Cruelty And The Beast’ and ‘From the Cradle To Enslave’ would have been completely different creatures if it were not for the depth of his astute and deliciously dark musicianship.

“It truly is with a heavy sense of loss that we (and extreme music in general) bid farewell to Stuart. May sombre flights of ravens wing you to your grave mate.”

While Anstis only played on two of the gothic-metal group’s full albums, 1996’s “Dusk and Her Embrace” and “Cruelty and the Beast” two years later, both are widely considered among the band’s best and most influential. He left the group in 1999 with two other members and eventually united with former Metal Church vocalist David Wayne in Bastardsun; Wayne died suddenly in 2005. Anstis’ most recent group was the trio Ninepence.