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Roman Republic: Res publica Romana • View topic - Ritual Impurity Question
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Ritual Impurity Question

PostPosted: Wed Mar 09, 2016 7:42 pm
by Faustus Romilius Cato
Salvete omnes!

My maternal grandmother passed away on the 11th of February. Is there a stipulated period of ritual impurity after a death in the family? What other things cause ritual impurity, if any?

I thank anyone who can help with this.

Valete,
Cato

Re: Ritual Impurity Question

PostPosted: Wed Mar 09, 2016 8:26 pm
by Marcus Grattius Frenzius
The state of pollutio after a death in the family lasts for 9 days provided the proper funerary rites are carried out. At the funeral you would make an offering to Ceres and to the deceased; traditionally the porca praesentanea, which served to cleanse the family of death, sanctify the grave or tomb and allow the deceased to enjoy one last meal with the family as a "living" person. After nine days it was typical to return to the tomb or gravesite and pour a libation of wine to the deceased and to the manes in general--this date was considered the deceased's new "birthday" under the idea that they were born into the after life. Just as it was traditional to wait 9 days after the birth of a child to formally name him/her and thus receive the family's blessing.

Re: Ritual Impurity Question

PostPosted: Wed Mar 09, 2016 8:30 pm
by Marcus Grattius Frenzius

Re: Ritual Impurity Question

PostPosted: Wed Mar 09, 2016 9:29 pm
by Faustus Romilius Cato
Salve Gratti!

Great information and great blog! Thank you!

Vale,
Cato