Burial with Feet to the East
It was an early custom for Christians to bury their dead with
the feet toward the east and the head toward the west. Various
reasons were given for this practice, some authorities stating
that the corpse was placed thus in preparation for the resurrection,
when the dead would rise with their faces toward the east.
Others think this mode of burial was practiced in imitation of
the posture of prayer.
A possibly related custom is the belief that a body must be
carried into a churchyard or cemetery ‘‘with the sun,’’ that is,
in the direction of sunset, from east to west.