TABOR - Tradition and Contemporaneity in the Romanian Orthodox Church
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Dead man’s tree
The presence in the Romanian funeral customs of a magical tree or fruit tree is, of course, an old inheritance coming from the Thracians and the Romans. Our ancestors used an evergreen tree, which, once cut, does not sprout any longer, just like the dead man cannot resurrect: the Thracians used the fir tree (Abies alba or Abies pectinata) and the Romans, the Cypress (Cupressus sempervivens). The tree placed next to the dead is a sacred offering, alms for the soul of the departed.