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Matters of the Dead (and Undead)

The funerary traditions in the Hasican Empire are primarily borrowed from the Elven Courts, and were an outgrowth of the undead plagues common in and before the Overthrow. Previously most human cultures had a custom of preparing burial mounds, tombs or crypts for their dead. As these tombs provided fodder for undead to roam the lands, this practice has been forsworn outside of a few area, and the Royal Family, who maintains tombs for their dead along with wards to prevent their rising.

History

The elves, for their love of history, have no record of a funerary rite prior to this one. It has been claimed that as the elves came out of the soultrees and into the world, they came at first fully formed with the knowledge of Lathalani as an innate part of their society. As this has been used to justify all sorts of actions, from funerary rites and cuisine to more sinister actions such as the War of Elves and Dwarves and the breaking of the first Council, this answer does not sit well with most Summer, Autumn or Winter elves.

Execution

The elven ritual of bruning a body was to allow their spirit to be released from the body it had bonded with, and to return the body to ash for replenishing their soultrees (note that when humans first copied this ritual, they copied fertilizing trees with the ash as well, which didn't work well for jadefirs. It was a case of copying without understanding). If there is time, the body is washed, dressed in a plain grey robe, and placed on a pyre of holly, pine and (if possible) a branch from the deceased elf's soultree. If the body died due to a wasting disease, or from magical means the body is washed and prepared with oil, and burned on a stone pyre. The ashes are then sealed away, as death by magic taints the soil.


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