The Ancient Funeral Practices

Funeral Practices have not always been the same, especially when it comes to comparisons of ancient funeral practices in various cultures. Although the main goal of any funeral rite is for the dead to peacefully go to its path on what we call the afterlife, it has still remained as distinctive when it comes to different nations.


Some of the widely known forms of funerals come from the ancient Greeks, Romans and Egyptians. From mythologies to actual events, funerals have been an integral part of life, and here are some of their more noted practices. In Asia, there are also Christian funeral services and Buddhist funeral services. For example, funeral services in Singapore are quite different from how they are being done in other countries such as Japan and Malaysia.


One of the most documented funerals is those made by the Romans. When a person dies, it is usually the family members who traditionally mourn with the dead. Rather, if there are no family members who can be with them, extended families like members of the individual’s organization are the one attending to the rites.


The normal Roman funeral rites usually starts with the family members gathered around the body inside their home, followed by the act from the closest relative passing a kiss and closing the eyes. The body is cleaned and anointed before it goes through a remote location that’s far from where the people are living, where it is usually burned into ashes, and placed in urns. Tombstones are also used in some funerals with military positions, where all of them are usually buried in camps. There are a few differences between the common people’s funerals and the wealthy people, which can also involve display of the dead body, and being cremated soon after.


Ancient Egyptians, in the meantime, provide the same act wherein the dead are placed in tombstones which usually resemble the actual body, some of them even being carved in the way like they are just lying on a bed. One of the most popular rites from the Egyptians is their art of mummification, wherein a lot of noted figures have been mummified and even casted spells upon so they can go through the Egyptian afterlife.


The early use of statues are also been done by these ancient cultures, mostly from the Greeks. This can be identified by the statues of Greek leaders and even of gods and goddesses which are said to have sacrificed for all men.


Some other funeral rites can be done with a dead body being carried by a small boat with flowers and then a soldier begins to shoot a firing arrow towards it, which causes it to burn as it floats to a river. One common thing though, is that all these funeral rites do not end without a simple prayer and lamentation to help the dead have a peaceful afterlife, regardless of what they did by the time they are still living.