Why do We Wear Black to Funerals?

What is a Funeral and When did Wearing Black become associated with it? How does the British Empire influence Black Color? What is the meaning of Black? What are the other Colors of Mourning? 
why do we wear black to funerals

Humans have developed a sense of clothing to decide on different dress codes for different events. Not only this, all the countries and their cultures have different types of clothes to wear for big events like marriages. Not only this, but funerals also have a dress code in some places. Have you ever wondered why do you wear black to a funeral? If not, no worries, because today you will get to know why do we wear black to funerals. You will get to know about all this as you continue reading the article.

1. What is a Funeral?

The process of disposition of a corpse, including burial or cremation in the presence of the observant, is known as a funeral. (See Theory of Eternity of Life)

2. When does Wearing a Black Funeral Dress begin?

Illustration of 4 Women wearing toga.

According to historians, the Ancient Romans began this rule. They discovered that they regularly wore white togas. But they wore a dark-colored toga while mourning the loss of their loved ones. This dark toga is known as toga Pulla. The toga was a semicircular cloth that was 12 to 20 feet in length and was woven from white wool. They wore it over a tunic by draping it around their body and over their shoulder. To know why do we wear black to funerals, read the next segments. (See Why do people laugh at funeral?)

3. What influence did the British Empire have on this Practice?

Wearing black became a traditional practice in England when Queen Victoria of England attended the funeral of a duke in a black mourning gown, that was made especially for this funeral. Queen Victoria was a fashion icon for the women of England and, after watching her wear black, everyone began to follow this as a tradition. (See 6 Official Languages of UN)

4. When were the Traditions of Wearing Black observed Globally?

Prince Albert (Francis Albert Augustus Charles Emmanuel) of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha was the husband of Queen Victoria of England. After he died in 1861, Queen Victoria wore only black clothes till the day she died. This was seen as a symbol around the globe and thus it became a tradition in the western world to wear black at funerals. (See Why does Black Absorb more Heat?)

5. What is the meaning of Black?

A girl in black dress with sad expression holding a white flower: why do we wear black to funerals 2

Black is the darkest of all colors and, therefore, is a definite color. It is known as the color of authority and borders. (See Is White or Black really a Colour?)

6. What does Black symbolize?

It represents the darkness and despair in terms of funerals. It also conveys the certainty of a thing which means death is certain and every living being will die. It symbolizes the eternal struggle between day and night, which, in terms of funerals, means the struggle that living has in accepting death as an eternal truth. This is the primary reason why do we wear black to funerals. (See What Symbolizes Bravery?)

7. What is associated with Why do you Wear Black to a Funeral?

Black color is often associated with sophisticated and serious expressions. So, why do we wear black to funerals? Well, most of the formal attire is preferably black because it is timeless and appropriate, especially at funerals. Black has a clear and definite meaning which is not easily misunderstood. Also, check out how many people have died on the Stratosphere?

8. What if you do not have Black Clothes?

A man in formal dress without blazer holding a bouquet in a graveyard.

Apart from answering why do we wear black to funerals, it may be possible that you love colors and have no black dress or it may also be a case that your black dress is not formal or appropriate for funerals. So, you can take the following clothing.

  • Women should choose a suit or dress in dark colors at knee-length. You can also opt for a long skirt with a shirt. You should maintain ethnicity such that your dress is not revealing and attention-grabbing. Also, check out why make a wish bouquet?
  • Men must opt for dark-colored suits like navy blue or dark brown shades. Full sleeved collared shirt with a tie (not vibrant and without prints) is suitable. (See What Color does Red and Purple Make?)

9. What are the Colors of Half-Mourning?

Half-mourning is the period in the life of a widow a year after the death of her husband. During the first year, she had to wear black to mourn and appear less attractive. In the next year, she can incorporate colors like purple and gray. (See Why the Sky Colour is Blue?)

10. What are the other colors of Mourning?

Besides, why do we wear black to funerals, around the world,  there are different colors that are preferred as mourning colors based on their tradition and cultures. White, red, purple, and yellow colors are considered mourning colors in different parts.

  • In Egypt, yellow is the mourning color as they associate it with the sun and gold. It is also the color of the Sarcophagus, a box-like funeral receptacle for a corpse.
  • In Ghana, red is the color of funerals in the native cultures.
  • The Catholic Church has introduced purple as a funeral color in many countries.
  • The white color is often seen worn by kids at funerals and women wear white hats at funerals. White signifies innocence and purity. (See What Colors do Mixing Pink and Blue make?)

11. What are the Basic Things to keep in mind while Dressing for a Funeral?

Observant and a pope in a funeral: why do we wear black to funerals 3

Funerals are hard for people close to the dead person. And people attending the funeral must have some sense of empathy and decency in their clothing as well. Because it is not somewhere you can just go with any type of clothing. Try to follow the following tips to avoid hurting the sentiments of the people. 

  • Avoid wearing any accessories. Though you can wear a watch, it must be a formal one.
  • Stick to the dark shades in clothing and avoid bright colors. Must read Dead as a Doornail or Doorknob Meaning.
  • Clothing should not be printed or contain any type of design, logos, etc.
  • You should avoid wearing anything with quotes, sayings, etc.
  • Avoid decorative hats, caps, and under-clothing.
  • Keep things simple and subtle with formal dress-up and shoes. Must read how old would Martin Luther King be today?

So, today you got to know why do you wear black to a funeral. Now, it is time to share this information about why do we wear black to funerals with friends and family to spread the knowledge about the beginning of this tradition and the reason for the association of black color with it. (See How Long does it take a Body to Decompose in Water?)

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