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Ancient china: funerary customs

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by

Jade Ella

on 12 November 2013

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Transcript of Ancient china: funerary customs

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The dead person's family made it known by loud weeping and moaning and by hanging up messages saying someone had died. They wore white clothing. The coarseness of the cloth and how long it was depended on how close the mourner was to the dead person. The corpse was then washed, dried, and laid out in their home for up to a week. People would come to pay their respects, give gifts to the family and offerings to the dead person. After religious procedures - which varied on the belief system of the dead person - the corpse was placed in a coffin. Music was played to calm the dead person's spirit. The coffin was carried in a procession for burial or cremation. (most were buried)
A woman from the Han Dynasty, Xin Zhui, is the best preserved mummy in the world. Her body was wrapped in many layers of silk after being dipped in a mysterious liquid that still puzzles scientists today. The preserving methods seemed to work, because when Xin Zhui was found, her skin was soft, she still had hair, all her limbs were flexible and her blood was still red.
who is the best preserved mummy in the world?
what paper items were burned at a funeral?
why were offerings given at the site of burial?
why was music played at funerals?
Ancient china: funerary customs
By Jade Teichmann
Thank-you for watching!!!
How did ancient chinese want to raise their children?
Funerary customs
Similarities

- Both corpses covered in fabric
- Both buried with items for the afterlife
- Both buried
- People came to pay respects
- Both believed in the afterlife
- Both burned Joss Paper
Imperial Family

- Corpse covered in silk
- Buried with items such as chariots and gold
- Buried with concubines or wives
- Preserved for longer by being wrapped in silk
- Many people came to pay respects
- Gave a lot for the afterlife
- Burnt lots and lots of Joss Paper (spirit money)
Farmers

- Corpse covered in cotton
- Buried with only small necessary items
- Buried by themselves with no one else
- Not preserved at all
- Only friends and family came to visit
- Didn't give as much for the afterlife
- Only burned a small amount of Joss Paper

What was the funeral process?
Just about anything that could be made into small paper models was burned at a funeral. Often rich people were buried with items such as chariots and clay models of living people to accompany them in the afterlife.
People gave gifts and offerings to the dead at the site of burial because if they didn't, it was feared that the dead person's spirit might become angry and cause bad things to happen to the living.
Ancient Chinese tried to do the right thing for their children growing up so that when the parents were in their old age, the children would do the right thing for them. Another reason they did this is so that when they died, the children would pay their respects and give offerings to their parent's spirits.
Music was played at dead people's funerals to calm the dead person's spirit and to make sure that the spirit would not become angry and turn on the family.
when did liu sheng and dou wan die?
Liu Sheng and one of his wives, Dou Wan, died around 100 BCE and were buried with nearly 300 objects and 12 horses. Their remains had been totally encased in jade suits shaped to look like armour with golden thread covering parts of their body.
Dou Wan's burial suit
Xin Zhui's mummy
Joss paper
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