Bunch of knotted fibre, used for washing dead, Turkey, 1901-1929
The dead were washed using this bunch of knotted fibre. It originates from Constantinople, now Istanbul, in Turkey. Many cultures have special rituals for preparing the dead for cremation or burial. Washing the body is obligatory in Islamic cultures, where it is washed more than once – perhaps three, five or seven times. The number is always an odd number.
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