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In this section you can find the titles of a number of books, all of which have to do with DEATH in one way or another. Some of the books that you can find listed here will be about the phenomenon of death, a subject that is at least as mysterious and fascinating as life itself. Other books will be about some of those weird rituals and customs that are connected with death and burial. And in case you are looking for titles about the related subject of graveyards and churchyards, you could have a look through our CEMETERIES section.

anon. :

"De Liturgie der Overledenen" [no date]

de Abdijen van Keizersberg & Affligem, Belgium, no date - pp.160

Interesting little book with the texts of all the different Roman Catholic funeral rituals. Published as a co-production by two Belgian Abbeys.

Ioanna Andreesco & Mihaela Bacou :

"Mourir à l'Ombre des Carpathes" [1986]

Éditions Payot, Paris, France, 1986 - pp.238
ISBN: 2 228 14140 2

Not exclusively about vampires. But a truly outstanding book that you really ought to read. It gives you a good insight and understanding of the Oltenian ideas about death, burial, and the transition of the deceased into the hereafter. There were so many things about contemporary Romanian belief in vampires that I did not understand. After I read this book, everything suddenly seemed to fall into place and made sense. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

Philippe Ariès :

"Essais sur l'Histoire de la Mort en Occident -
   du Moyen Age à nos Jours"

Editions du Seuil, Paris, France, 1975 - pp.242
ISBN: 2 02 004736 5

"L'Homme devant la Mort - I. Le Temps des Gisants"

Editions du Seuil, Paris, France, 1977 - pp.312
ISBN: 2 02 008944 0

"L'Homme devant la Mort - II. La Mort ensauvagé"

Editions du Seuil, Paris, France, 1977 - pp.350
ISBN: 2 02 008945 9

"The Hour of our Death" [1977]

Random House, New York, USA, 1982 - pp.652
ISBN:0 394 75156 6

When it comes to the European ideas and rituals that have to do with Death and Burial, and with the history of such ideas and customs, then Philippe Ariès seems to be the expert who knows everything there is to know.

Jean-Pierre Bayard :

"Le Sens caché des rites Mortuaires" [1993]

Editions Dangles, St-Jean-de-Braye, France, 1993 - pp.330
ISBN: 2 7033 0385 8

This is an excellent study that reveals many of the ideas that are hidden behind all kinds of funeral rituals. From prehistoric times to the present, from places all over the world.

T.S.R. Boase :

"De Dood in de Middeleeuwen - Sterfelijkheid, Oordeel en Aandenken" [1974]

De Haan, Bussum, Netherlands, 1974 - pp.144
ISBN: 90 228 4518 4

O. Böckel :

"Die Totenklage bei den Germanen" [1920]

in: "Bilder aus der Volkskunde" [1920]
Verlag Moritz Diesterweg, Frankfurt am Main, Germany, 1920 - pp.288

Gustave le Bon :

"De la Mort apparente - et des inhumations prématurées" [1866]

Librairie d'Adrien, Paris, France, 1866 - pp.212

Jan Bondeson :

"Buried Alive - The terrifying History of our most primal Fear" [2002]

W.W. Norton & Company, New York, USA, 2002 - pp.320
ISBN: 0 393 32222 X

Brilliant and extremely entertaining study on the subject of premature burial. There is more about it in our "Bits and Pieces" section under the heading of "Premature Burial". HIGHLY RECOMMENDED !

Marc Bonnard & Elisabeth Le Dru :

"Les Rituels de Mort dans la Chine ancienne" [1986]

Dervy-Livres, Paris, France, 1986 - pp.118
ISBN: 2 85076 009 9

The first and largest part of the book is all about the funeral and mourning of a prince. Fortunately the second part also brings us more general information.

Anatole Le Braz :

"La Fête des Morts en Bretagne" [1894]

Séquences, France, 1991 - pp.40

"La Légende de la Mort"

Editions Jeanne Laffitte, Marseille, France, 1982 - pp.488
ISBN: 2 7348 0010 1

"La Légende de la Mort chez les Bretons Armoricains" - volume 1 [1994]

Terre de Brume Editions, Marseille, France, 1996 - pp.360
ISBN: 2 908021 29 3

"La Légende de la Mort chez les Bretons Armoricains" - volume 2 [1994]

Terre de Brume Editions, Marseille, France, 1997 - pp.348
ISBN: 2 908021 30 7

Practically all of the books that Anatol Le Braz has written on this subject are of interest. Bretagne happens to be a part of the world where most of the local legends and superstitions have to do with Death and the Dead.

Marie Capdecomme :

"La Vie des Morts - Enquete sur les Fantomes d'Hier et d'Aujourd'hui" [1997]

Editions Imago, Paris, France, 1997 - pp.330
ISBN: 2 911416 02 3

Gérard Chauvin :

"Mort - volume I" [2002]

MA Editions, Paris, France, 2002 - pp.128
ISBN: 2 86714 279 2

"Mort - volume II" [2002]

MA Editions, Paris, France, 2002 - pp.128
ISBN: 2 86714 280 6

Christopher Clemens & Mark Smith :

"Death - Grim Realities and Comic Relief" [1982]

Delacorte Press, New York, USA, 1982 - pp.192
ISBN: 0 440 07155 6

A. Dieterich :

"Die Reise der Seele und das Land der Toten" [1920]

in: "Bilder aus der Volkskunde" [1920]
Verlag Moritz Diesterweg, Frankfurt am Main, Germany, 1920

W.Y. Evans-Wentz :

"Het Tibetaanse Dodenboek" [1973]

Uitgeverij Ankh-Hermes, Deventer, Netherlands, 1973 - pp.240

"The Tibetan Book of the Dead" [1927]

Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK, 1960 - pp.250

J.J. Fahrenfort & C.C. van de Graft :

"Dodenbezorging en Cultuur" [1947]

Ploegsma, Amsterdam, the Netherlands, 1947 - pp.244

Interesting book, consisting of 2 volumes and covering the whole world on the subject of disposal of the dead.

Mamoun Fansa (ed.) :

"Wohin die Toten gehen - Kult und Religion in der Steinzeit" [2000]

Isensee Verlag, Oldenburg, Germany, 2000 - pp.92
ISBN: 3 89598 744 1

Companion book to a special exhibition that took place in the Staatliches Museum für Naturkunde und Vorgeschichte in Oldenburg.

Herman Feifel (ed.) :

"The Meaning of Death" [1959]

McGraw-Hill Books, New York, USA, 1965 - pp.352

Excellent book that offers 19 different articles on various aspects of death written by experts that include great names like Herbert Marcuse and Carl G. Jung.

Camille Flammarion :

"Aprés la Mort" [1922]

Editions J'ai Lu, Paris, France, 1974 - pp.308

"La Mort et son Mystère" [1920]

Editions J'ai Lu, Paris, France, 1978 - pp.440

Henry Green (ed.) :

"Les Simulachres & Historiees Faces de la Mort - commonly called The Dance of Death" [1869]

A. Brothers, Manchester, UK, 1869 - pp.292

Facsimile reprint by the Holbein Society of "Les Simulachres & Historiees faces de la Mort, autant elle gammet pourtraictes, que artificiellement imaginées", which was originally published in Lyon in 1538. Apart from a complete reproduction of the book itself, there is a translation of the text by Henry Green, an introduction about the artist, Hans Holbein, the Younger. And there is an apendix with a number of reproductions taken from various editions of George Æmilius "Imagines Mortis".

Stanislav Grof :

"Books of the Dead - Manuals for Living and Dying" [1994]

Thames & Hudson, London, UK, 1994 - pp.96
ISBN: 0 500 81041 9

Michel Guiomar :

"Principes d'une Esthétique de la Mort" [1967]

Librairie José Corti, Paris, France, 1967 - pp.492

Fdal Haja :

"La Mort, le Jugement Dernier et la Vie Future" [2005]

Editions Universel, Paris, France, 2005 - pp.224
ISBN: 2 911546 10 5

Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali :

"Les Tourments de la Tombe" [2006]

Editions la Ruche, Paris, France, 2006 - pp.104
ISBN: 2 914566 28 X

G. T. Haneveld :

"Zandloper, Zeis en Pierlala - Symbolen van de dood in (volks)kunst en cultuur" [1995]

TDS, Utrecht, Netherlands, 1995 - pp.104
ISBN: 90 215 2421 X

This is a nice little book which is mainly about the many ways in which Death has been portrayed. On graves, in songs, in poetry and literature, as a puppet, as a symbol or an icon, etc., etc.

Francois Hinard (ed.) :

"La Mort - Les Morts et l'au-delà dans le monde Romain" [1987]

Université de Caen, Caen, France, 1987 - pp.376
ISBN: 2 905461 22 5

M. Höfler :

"Die Bretzel, ein Totengebäck" [1920]

in: "Bilder aus der Volkskunde" [1920]
Verlag Moritz Diesterweg, Frankfurt am Main, Germany, 1920

Séverin Icard :

"La Mort Réelle et la Mort Apparente" [1897]

Félix Alcan, Paris, France, 1897 - pp.314

E.F. Jung :

"Der Weg ins Jenseits - Mythen vom Leben nach dem Tode"

Fourier Verlag, Wiesbaden, Germany, no date - pp.326
ISBN: 3 925037 31 4

J.H. Kamstra, H. Milde & K. Wagtendonk (ed.) :

"Funerary Symbols and Religion - Essays dedicated to Professor M.S.H.G. Heerma van Voss" [1988]

J.H. Kok, Kampen, Netherlands, 1988 - pp.182
ISBN: 90 242 44307

H.F. van Kinschot :

"Wet op de lijkbezorging" [1991]

Tjeenk Willink, Zwolle, Netherlands, 1969, 1991 - pp.160

Dutch legislation regarding the disposal of the dead.

Tankred Koch :

"Lebendig Begraben - Geschichte und Geschichten vom Scheintod" [1990]

Edition Leipzig, Leipzig, Germany, 1990 - pp.224
ISBN : 3 361 00299 0

Gustave le Bon :

"De la Mort Apparente et des Inhumations Prématurées" [1866]

Librairie d'Adrien Delahaye, Paris, France, 1866 - pp.212

Frédéric Lenoir and Jean-Philippe de Tonnac (ed.) :

"La Mort et l'Immortalité - Encyclopédie des Savoirs et des Croyances" [2004]

Bayard, Paris, France, 2004 - pp.1686
ISBN 2 7028 9909 9

Magnificent and massive book, filled with an enormous diversity of specialist articles about various ideas concerning death and the afterlife.

Julian Litten :

"The English Way of Death - the Common Funeral since 1450" [1991]

Robert Hale, London, UK, 1992 - pp.250
ISBN: 0 7090 4777 0

Nigel Llewllyn :

"The Art of Death" [1991]

Reaktion Books Ltd, London, UK, 1991 - pp.160
ISBN: 0 948462 16 7

Very nice and interesting book that I bought in the bookshop of the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.

Ivan A. Lopatin :

"The Cult of the Dead among the natives of the Amur Basin" [1958]

Mouton & Co, 's Gravenhage, Netherlands, 1960 - pp.212

Excellent and interesting study about the ideas about Death and the Dead among the people who live in the Amur Basin, in Siberia.

Elard Hugo Meyer :

"Der Tod im Volksglauben" [1920]

in: "Bilder aus der Volkskunde" [1920]
Verlag Moritz Diesterweg, Frankfurt am Main, Germany, 1920 - pp.288

Jessica Mitford :

"The American Way of Death" [1963]

Simon & Schuster, New York, USA, 1978 - pp.324

Revealing book that exposes the way in which American undertakers go about (or - hopefully - used to go about) their business.

Jean-Pierre Mohen :

"Les Rites de l'au-delà" [1995]

Editions Odile Jacob, Paris, France, 1995 - pp.330
ISBN: 2 7381 0324 3

Nicolas Penny :

"Mourning" [1981]

Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, UK, 1981 - pp.64

Jean-Yves Péron-Autret :

"Les Enterrés Vivants" [1979]

France Loisirs, Paris, France, 1979 - pp.192

All about premature burials and its supposed link to the belief in vampires. There is more about this book in our Bits & Pieces-section: Les Enterrés Vivants

Lazar Puhalo :

"On the Nature of Heaven and Hell according to the Holy Fathers" [1995]

Synaxis Press, Dewdney, Canada, no date - pp.38
ISBN: 919 672 7 1

This short publication appears to be an excerpt from a number of lectures given by Lazar Puhalo, Archbishop of the Orthodox Church in America, abbot of the Canadian Orthodox Monastery of All Saints of North America.

"The Soul, the Body and Death" [1980]

Synaxis Press, Dewdney, Canada, 2007 - pp.196
ISBN: 919672 18 3

Bruno Py :

"La Mort et le Droit" [1922]

Presses Universitaires de France, Paris, France, 1997 - pp.128
ISBN 2 13 048885 4

There is quite a bit of information to be found in this small book. The first half is about "death and the law", the second part about "corpses and the law".

Abdallah Ibn Ibrahim Ar-Raouji :

"Qu'y-a-t'il Apres la Mort ?" [no date]

Editions Assia, no place, no date - pp.238

Evelyn Rossiter :

"The Book of the Dead - Papyri of Ani, Hunefer, Anhai" [1984]

Regent Books, London, UK, 1984 - pp.122

E. Samter :

"Totenbräuche in alter und neuen Zeit" [1920]

in: "Bilder aus der Volkskunde" [1920]
Verlag Moritz Diesterweg, Frankfurt am Main, Germany, 1920

Steffen Schäffer :

"Scheintod - auf den Spuren alter Ängste" [1997]

Bechtermünz Verlag, Augsburg, Germany, 1997 - pp.134
ISBN: 3 86047 779 X

Jean-Claude Schmitt :

"Les Revenants - Les Vivants et les Morts dans la Société Médiévale" [1994]

Editions Gallimard, Paris, France, 1994 - pp.306
ISBN: 2 07 073657 1

Thierry Secretan :

"Going into Darkness - Fantastic Coffins from Africa" [1994]

Thames & Hudson, London, UK, 1995 - pp.128
ISBN: 0 500 27839 3

Lots of interesting photos about places in Africa where those people who can afford it like to be buried in coffins that look like a fish, or a chicken, or a limousine and things like that.

B.C. Sliggers and others :

"Naar het Lijk - Het Nederlandse doodsportret - 1500-heden" [1998]

Teylers Museum, Haarlem, Netherlands, 1988 - pp.224
ISBN: 90 5730 042 7

Frank Smyth & Roy Stemman :

"Mysteries of the Afterlife" [1975]

Aldus Books, London, UK, 1978 - pp.256

A.J. Spencer :

"Death in Ancient Egypt" [1982]

Penguin Books, Harmondsworth, UK, 1982 - pp.256
ISBN: 0 1402 2294 4

Claude Sutto (ed.) :

"Le Sentiment de la Mort au Moyen Âge" [1979]

Les Editions Univers, Montreal, Canada, 1979 - pp.284
ISBN: 2 89053 016 7

This book contains about a dozen different studies that were presented at the "Cinquième Colloque" of the Institute for Medieval Studies of the University of Montreal.

Imam al-Suyuti :

"Les Mystères de la Tombe - Délices et Supplices" [2002]

Editions de la Ruche, Paris, France, 2004 - pp.120
ISBN: 2 914566 21 2

Ibn Taymiyya :

"La Tombe et ses Supplices" [no date]

Editions Albouraq, Paris, France, 2002 - pp.174
ISBN: 2 84161 009 8

Ewald Vanvugt :

"Botje bij botje - menselijke resten in musea" [1998]

Jan Mets, Amsterdam, Netherlands, 1998 - pp.96
ISBN: 90 5330 255 7

Some interesting information about human remains that are on display in musea.

various authors :

"De Dodendans in de kunsten" [1989]

HES Uitgeverij, Utrecht, Netherlands, 1989 - pp.112
ISBN: 90 6194 417 1

All about the "Dance of Death" in the arts.

various authors :

"Het Feest van de Dood" [1993]

Foundation Europalia International, 1993 - pp.164
ISBN: 90 6988 064 4

Much information about the Mexican "Feast of the Death".

Roger Vidal & Guy Senac de Monsembernard :

"Législation funéraire - Cimetières - Concessions de Terrains - Crématoriums - Actes de Décès - Prélèvements d'Organes - Pompes Funèbres - Police des Funérailles - Modèles d'Actes" [1997]

Editions Litec, Paris, France, 1997 - pp.292
ISBN: 2 7111 2820 2

Everything you might ever want to know about each and every legal aspect of burial, cremation, et.al., in France that is.

Dominique Viseux :

"La Mort et les états posthumes selons les grandes traditions" [1989]

Guy Trédaniel, Paris, France, 1989 - pp.164
ISBN: 2 85707 310 0

Michel Vovelle :

"L'Heure du Grand Passage - Chronique de la Mort" [1993]

Editions Gallimard, France, 1993 - pp.160
ISBN: 2 07 053161 9

This title is part of a series of brilliantly illustrated little books, that has been published in a lot of different countries. So it can't be very hard to find yourself a copy of it.

Ernest A. Wallis Budge :

"The Egyptian Book of the Dead" [1895]

Dover Publications, New York, USA, 1967 - pp.328

Lyall Watson :

"The Romeo Error - A matter of life and death" [1974]

Hodder & Stoughton, London, UK 1974 - pp.254
ISBN: 0 340 19136 8

Lyall Watson's book are always interesting to say the least. This one, all about premature burial and the distinction between life and death, is definitely worthy of your attention.

E. Wiétrich :

"L'Enigme de la Mort" [2002]

Editions Belénos, France, 2002 - pp.188
ISBN: 2 9806911 7 8

David M. Wilson :

"Awful Ends - The British Museum Book of Epitaphs" [1992]

British Museum Press, London, UK, 1998 - pp.96
ISBN: 0 7141 1781 1

Jakob Wisse :

"Selbstmord und Todesfurcht bei den Naturvölkern" [1933]

W.J. Thieme & Cie, Zutphen, Netherlands, 1933 - pp.548

Fascinating study about "Suicide and the Fear of Death" in different cultures from the Pacific, Australia, North and South America, Africa and Asia.

Reginald Maxwell Woolley (ed.) :

"Coptic Offices" [1930]

Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, London, UK, 1930 - pp.154

Texts and rituals from the Coptic Church. The final and most interesting part of the book is called "The Office of the Burial of the Dead".

Jean Ziegler :

"Les Vivants et la Mort" [1975]

Editions du Seuil, Paris, France, 1975 - pp.318
ISBN: 2 02 004796 9

© 2008 by Rob Brautigam - NL - Last update 26 October 2008
photo: "Les Catacombes - Paris" - © 1985 by Rob Brautigam

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