In the region I belong to there is one word for the entire process of shrouding and burial, whose English is funeral. We also use that word for even the deceased lying on the bier.

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If I keep that word in a sentence, the English translation will be, according to us:

The funeral is being carried to the graveyard.

I don't think in English it is grammatical to say this sentence when the speaker is referring to the deceased lying on the bier.

How do you say this?

The funeral is being shouldered.

Is this OK, when the speaker is referring to the deceased?

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    In the West there's a reluctance to talk about the dead body, so there isn't a standard, commonly-used term for the body plus what it's buried in. "Coffin" would work if the body was in a coffin, although if someone is interred without a coffin, you would need another term. Other terms like "bier" are less common and people might not know exactly what was meant. It's not terribly clear what's going on in the picture, and what the body is in.
    – Stuart F
    Commented Dec 5, 2023 at 11:04

1 Answer 1


As you say, the funeral is the 'process' - the ceremony of saying goodbye to the departed before their body is disposed of. We can't call the dead body a funeral. The funeral is being carried is not grammatically wrong, but it doesn't make sense.

You could say The coffin is being carried to the graveyard [on a bier], or The deceased is being carried...

The verb shoulder usually refers to the action of lifting something onto ones shoulder(s) rather than the process of carrying.

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