151 Creamation

The funerary art of Creamation

This tradition has its origin from Bavaria in southern Germany. A former duke of Bavaria, Otto Wittelsbach, whose gluttony for creamy cakes was notorious, was the first person to be creamated.

At his deathbed in 1183, it was a misunderstanding between the duke’s doctor and the duke himself that led to this Bavarian funerary practise. The doctor had tried to convince the duke to change to a lighter “diet” cream, to combat his declining health. The duke’s famous last words, as a response to this, was: “The day my state sees diet cream will be over my dead body.

The practise of creamation was discontinued with the death of Maximilian I in 1651, whose severe lactose intolerance prohibited it.