The Full Wiki

Ossuary: Map


Wikipedia article:

Map showing all locations mentioned on Wikipedia article:

An ossuary is a chest, building, well, or site made to serve as the final resting place of human skeletal remains. They are frequently used where burial space is scarce. A body is first buried in a temporary grave, then after some years the skeletal remains are removed and placed in an ossuary. The greatly reduced space taken up by an ossuary means that it is possible to store the remains of many more people in a single tomb than if the original coffins were left as is.


In Persiamarker, the Zoroastrians used a deep well for this function from the earliest times (circa 3,000 years ago) and called it astudan (literally, "the place for the bones"). There are many rituals and regulations in the Zoroastrian faith concerning the astudans. Among the pre-seventh-century Sogdians [26395] in the region of central Asia, the name for an ossuary was tanbar.

Roman Catholic

Many examples of ossuaries are found within Europe such as the Santa Maria della Concezione dei Cappuccinimarker in Romemarker, Italymarker, the San Bernardino alle Ossamarker in Milanmarker, Italy, the Sedlec Ossuarymarker in the Czech Republicmarker, and Capela dos Ossosmarker (Chapel of bones) in the city of √Čvora, in Portugalmarker. The village of Wamba in the province of Valladolidmarker, Spainmarker has an impressive ossuary of over a thousand skulls inside the local church, dating from between the 12th and the 18th centuries. A more recent example is the Douaumont ossuarymarker in Francemarker that contains the remains of more than 130,000 French and German soldiers that fell at the Battle of Verdunmarker during World War I.

The catacombs beneath the Monastery of San Franciscomarker in Limamarker, Perumarker also contain an ossuary.


During the time of the Second Temple, Jewish burial customs included primary burials in burial caves, followed by secondary burials in ossuaries placed in smaller niches of the burial caves. Some of the limestone ossuaries that have been discovered, particularly around the Jerusalemmarker area, include intricate geometrical patterns and inscriptions identifying the deceased. Among the best-known Jewish ossuaries of this period are: an ossuary inscribed 'Simon the Temple builder' in the collection of the Israel Museummarker, another incribed 'Elisheba wife of Tarfon', one inscribed 'Yehohanan ben Hagkol' that contained an iron nail in a heel bone suggesting crucifixion, another inscribed 'James son of Joseph, brother of Jesus', the authenticity of which is suspect, and ten ossuaries recovered from the Talpiot Tombmarker in 1980, several of which are reported to have names from the New Testament.

During the Second Temple period, Jewish sages debated whether the occasion of the gathering of a parent's bones for a secondary burial was a day of sorrow or rejoicing; it was resolved that it was a day of fasting in the morning and feasting in the afternoon. The custom of secondary burial in ossuaries did not persist among Jews past the Second Temple period nor appear to exist among Jews outside the land of Israelmarker.

See also

External links

Embed code:

Got something to say? Make a comment.
Your name
Your email address