As with any profession, the funeral profession has its jargon, a specialized vocabulary unique to the business. Only those intimately familiar with the profession know what everything actually means. At times, this can be a problem because people need to be able to understand in order to make good decisions. Therefore, the need for a glossary! Hopefully, it will help you better understand any future conversations you may have with funeral professionals.

Embalming

Temporarily preserving the deceased by disinfecting the body and injecting embalming chemicals into the veins and arteries. This is meant to preserve the body until all funeral functions are complete.

Entombment

Placing the body into a burial chamber, often above the ground and in a mausoleum, crypt, or family tomb.

Epitaph

An inscription on a tomb/grave in remembrance of the deceased.

Eulogy

Usually given during a funeral or memorial service, a eulogy honors the life of a deceased loved one.

Executor

An executor is the personal representative appointed to carry out final instructions and wishes after death has occurred, as documented in a deceased person’s will. This includes participation in the probate process and distribution of assets. Ask a trusted friend or loved one to accept this responsibility.

Exhume

The removal of the body from the burial site; a synonym of disinter.