january, 2021

thu28jan6:30 pm7:30 pmVirtual EventOnline talk - Traditions of Death and Burial6:30 pm - 7:30 pm Event Organized By: Jewellery Quarter Cemeteries Project Event Type :Tours, Talks & Walks

Event Details

A FREE Online talk with Dr Helen Frisby exploring the fascinating traditions which have always surrounded death, grief and burial.

Death has been a source of grief and uncertainty for humanity throughout history, but it has also inspired a plethora of fascinating traditions. The covering of mirrors to prevent the departed spirit from seeing itself; the passing bell rung to assist the soul to heaven; the ‘sin eater’ who by eating and drinking absorbed the corpse’s sins – all of these were common approaches at one time or another. Taking evidence from history, archaeology and folklore, this talk explores English approaches to death and burial from the Norman conquest to the present day: ancient customs which have long since lapsed, others which have survived relatively unchanged, and new approaches such as eco-burials – and of course the impact of Covid-19 upon our way of dying. Weaving their way through ten centuries of funerary customs, we’ll see again and again the threads of affection and duty which tether the living to the dead, and oblige us to acknowledge our own mortality.

Helen Frisby obtained her PhD on Victorian funeral customs from the University of Leeds in 2009. She’s appeared on the History Channel and BBC Radio, and is the author of Traditions of Death and Burial (Bloomsbury: 2019) upon which this talk is based. Helen’s most recent research, conducted through the University of Bristol with Dr Stuart Prior, investigates the informal occupational culture of frontline cemetery staff. Helen is Secretary of the Association for the Study of Death & Society (ASDS) and a Council Member of the Folklore Society.

This talk will take place via Zoom. Ticket holders will be sent a link and password to join the zoom session on the day of the talk.



(Thursday) 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm


Jewellery Quarter Cemeteries ProjectThis £2.3 million restoration to Key Hill and Warstone Lane cemeteries is funded through a partnership between Birmingham City Council, The National Lottery Heritage Fund and the Jewellery Quarter Development Trust. The works will include extensive restoration work undertaken to the catacombs, boundary walls, footpaths, drainage and landscaping.josie.wall@jqdt.org Post: Studio 508F, The Big Peg, 120 Vyse Street, Birmingham, B18 6NF

Virtual Event Details

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