Re: Marriage in Funeral Rites?
Here are a couple of examples of marriage/near-marriage after the death of one of the potential spouses-
At the start of the Trojan War, Spartan Iphigenia is told she will
be Achilles' bride, but she is slain as a sacrifice. She is later said to be his wife in the Underworld.
Trojan Polyxena was to be married to Achilles (whether by the living Achilles' negotiation or the demand of his ghost). After he died,
she was sacrificed to him by his son Pyrrhus, born by Deidamia.
The death of Polyxena marks the end of the war.
I wonder what the spirits of Helen of Sparta and Medea of Colchis thought, as they were also each reputed to be the wife of Achilles
in the Afterlife.
Herakles had to die as a mortal to wed the immortal Hebe.
An interesting contemporary example is at this link:
Apparently, in France one can have a posthumous marriage.
The Mormon Church practices a form of this, too.
The Chinese practice is called ghost marriage.
Demetria Nanos, Chicago
--- In ANEemail@example.com, "Lampros F. Kallenos" <xalkinos04@...> wrote:
> > I was recently asked whether it was true if, in some
> > Ancient Near Eastern cultures, when someone died
> > before they were married, that the funeral rite also
> > contained some kind of marriage rite.
> When a young girl, or even a young man, dies while still
> unmarried, it often happens that, among her tears, the
> mother calls the deceased and refers to her, or him, as a
> bride, or groom: "Ah, my child, and I was longing to see you
> a bride..." The deceased girl or boy might even be dressed
> as a bride or groom.
> This may happen when the dead daughter or son had already,
> or almost, entered the age of marriage, but it may also
> happen if the child dies while a marriage was still enough
> years in the future.
> My recollection has this not as a custom, but something more
> probable to happen in conditions that make the pain even
> bigger --for example, a beloved, beautiful girl, a sudden
> sickness, an accident. Not being a custom, it is also not a
> custom that it will be the mother that will call the dead
> child. But the mother is often the one carrying the most
> intense feelings.
> What I don't know, is how much back can these be traced.
> Sorry for my delay to respond. One of my excuses, is that I
> originally thought it was about a death that happens before
> a marriage already planned.
> I recall that one Greek author wrote a poem or a book when
> his child died, in which he refers to the marriage of the
> child. Unfortunately for my memory, it is not Stratis
> Myrivilis and "H zwh en tafw".
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