Carrying the coffin to the burial site(運喪)

Carrying the coffin to the burial site

Headword

운상 ( 運喪 )

Location of the encyclopedia

Korean Rites of Passage > Korean Rites of Passage > Sangnye|Jangnye

Writer PyoInju(表仁柱)

That part of a funeral procession in which the coffin is carried to the burial site on a bier, or the act of carrying the coffin to the grave.

Unsang had been performed using a cart driven by men, cows, or horses, but when “Jujagarye” (朱子家禮, Family Rituals of Zhu Xi) was introduced, the bier was generally carried by men on their shoulders. When barin (Kor. 발인, Chin. 發靷, departure of the funeral procession from the home to the burial site) is over, unsang begins. The style of the unsang may vary depending on region or the social status of the deceased.

When barin is over, the bier carriers lift the bier up and down three times before putting it on their shoulders and bidding a final farewell. One of them starts a funeral song and the rest follow as they leave the house, accompanied by the wailing chief mourner and others in mourning clothes. Before the bier leaves the village, a memorial rite is held again as a final departure. Called noje, this rite is normally conducted near the village entrance or somewhere not too far away that is deemed appropriate. The bier is put down on the ground, in front of which a table of food is set, and mourners take turns serving cups of liquor following the lead of the chief mourner. Those who missed the chance before can offer their condolences here. Since the bier passes through places meaningful to the deceased person or frequented by him or her, noje takes place at any meaningful spot on the way to the grave.

Unsang proceeds along with the performance of funeral songs, which differ depending on conditions of the procession. Funeral songs are not sung just to wish for a peaceful passage into eternity and to console the grief of the chief mourner, but to help the bier carriers move in unison. When the bier arrives at the burial site, the coffin is put down and visitors can pay their condolences until the coffin is lowered into the grave.

The order of a bier procession is mostly fixed: Bangsangsi (Kor. 방상시, Chin. 方相氏, a deity believed to protect the funeral procession from evil forces) at the front, followed by myeongjeong (Kor. 명정, Chin. 銘旌, a banner inscribed with the name and rank of the deceased), manjang (Kor. 만장, Chin. 輓章, a written passage commemorating the deceased), yeongyeo (Kor. 영여, Chin. 靈輿, a small litter used to carry the spirit tablet of the deceased), gongpo (Kor. 공포, Chin. 功布, hemp cloth used to wipe the coffin during burial), sap (Kor. 삽, Chin. 翣, funeral procession item in the shape of a fan), sangyeo (Kor. 상여, Chin. 喪輿, funeral bier used to carry the coffin to the burial place), sangju (Kor. 상주, Chin. 喪主, chief mourner in charge of the funeral), bogin (Kor. 복인, Chin. 服人, mourners required to wear mourning clothes), and relatives and visitors.

Unsang is more than simply carrying a deceased person to the burial site but a significant rite of passage, the existential process of changing from a living human to an ancestor and spatial transition from this world to the afterlife. The procession is orchestrated to accomplish such meanings, which are also fully demonstrated in the lyrics of funeral songs and diverse rites observed during the procession.

Carrying the coffin to the burial site

Carrying the coffin to the burial site
Headword

운상 ( 運喪 )

Location of the encyclopedia

Korean Rites of Passage > Korean Rites of Passage > Sangnye|Jangnye

Writer PyoInju(表仁柱)

That part of a funeral procession in which the coffin is carried to the burial site on a bier, or the act of carrying the coffin to the grave.

Unsang had been performed using a cart driven by men, cows, or horses, but when “Jujagarye” (朱子家禮, Family Rituals of Zhu Xi) was introduced, the bier was generally carried by men on their shoulders. When barin (Kor. 발인, Chin. 發靷, departure of the funeral procession from the home to the burial site) is over, unsang begins. The style of the unsang may vary depending on region or the social status of the deceased.

When barin is over, the bier carriers lift the bier up and down three times before putting it on their shoulders and bidding a final farewell. One of them starts a funeral song and the rest follow as they leave the house, accompanied by the wailing chief mourner and others in mourning clothes. Before the bier leaves the village, a memorial rite is held again as a final departure. Called noje, this rite is normally conducted near the village entrance or somewhere not too far away that is deemed appropriate. The bier is put down on the ground, in front of which a table of food is set, and mourners take turns serving cups of liquor following the lead of the chief mourner. Those who missed the chance before can offer their condolences here. Since the bier passes through places meaningful to the deceased person or frequented by him or her, noje takes place at any meaningful spot on the way to the grave.

Unsang proceeds along with the performance of funeral songs, which differ depending on conditions of the procession. Funeral songs are not sung just to wish for a peaceful passage into eternity and to console the grief of the chief mourner, but to help the bier carriers move in unison. When the bier arrives at the burial site, the coffin is put down and visitors can pay their condolences until the coffin is lowered into the grave.

The order of a bier procession is mostly fixed: Bangsangsi (Kor. 방상시, Chin. 方相氏, a deity believed to protect the funeral procession from evil forces) at the front, followed by myeongjeong (Kor. 명정, Chin. 銘旌, a banner inscribed with the name and rank of the deceased), manjang (Kor. 만장, Chin. 輓章, a written passage commemorating the deceased), yeongyeo (Kor. 영여, Chin. 靈輿, a small litter used to carry the spirit tablet of the deceased), gongpo (Kor. 공포, Chin. 功布, hemp cloth used to wipe the coffin during burial), sap (Kor. 삽, Chin. 翣, funeral procession item in the shape of a fan), sangyeo (Kor. 상여, Chin. 喪輿, funeral bier used to carry the coffin to the burial place), sangju (Kor. 상주, Chin. 喪主, chief mourner in charge of the funeral), bogin (Kor. 복인, Chin. 服人, mourners required to wear mourning clothes), and relatives and visitors.

Unsang is more than simply carrying a deceased person to the burial site but a significant rite of passage, the existential process of changing from a living human to an ancestor and spatial transition from this world to the afterlife. The procession is orchestrated to accomplish such meanings, which are also fully demonstrated in the lyrics of funeral songs and diverse rites observed during the procession.