Cremations 1000 BCE
The practise of burning corpses on an open fire was popularised in the West by the
Ancient Greeks. While they also carried out ground burial – and all cremated ashes were interred, often in an urn – cremation was closely associated with military glory and patriotism. It’s perhaps not surprising then that the Romans also appropriated this practise, at least until the introduction of Christianity. The belief in the resurrection of the body saw ground burial become the norm in the West until the 19th century, except in emergencies like plague outbreaks. Cremation also has a long history in Asia – in particular in India, where ashes are deposited in the Ganges.
“Cremation also has a long history in Asia”
An Ancient Greek cremation urn from 850 BCE