Burial Practices in Europe

  • Ariane Maggio
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-51726-1_2887-1

Introduction

Burials can provide a wealth of information on a society (Tarlow and Stutz 2013). This is not only through the anthropological assessment of any human remains present in the burial but also through the interpretation of the factors behind the treatment and burial of the dead. Accordingly, the burial practices of any given society can provide information on societal status, cultural customs, and religious or spiritual belief systems (Pearson 2003). In Europe, people have been burying their dead since the Paleolithic period, with the earliest undisputed intentional burial in Europe at the Neanderthal site of Krapina in Croatia, dating back to approximately 130,000 years ago (Russell 1987). Furthermore, the types of burials are highly variable across Europe, ranging from simple grave burials to elaborate monumental tombs containing the burials of multiple individuals.

Definitions

In this entry “burial” refers to the act of interring the remains of a deceased individual either...

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References

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Further Readings

  1. Brennan, M.J. 2014. The A–Z of death and dying: Social, medical, and cultural aspects: Social, medical, and cultural aspects. Oxford: ABC-CLIO.Google Scholar
  2. Colman, P. 1997. Corpses, coffins, and crypts: A history of burial. New York: Henry Holt and Company (BYR).Google Scholar
  3. Pearson, M.P. 2003. The archaeology of death and burial. Stroud: Sutton.Google Scholar
  4. Tarlow, S., and L.N. Stutz. 2013. The Oxford handbook of the archaeology of death and burial. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Western AustraliaCrawleyAustralia

Section editors and affiliations

  • Marcel Otte
    • 1
  1. 1.Service of PrehistoryUniversity of LiègeLiègeBelgium