• Italian: catafalco, scaffold


Temporary stage or platform erected in a church to receive the coffin of a deceased person or more generally to take the place of the bier when the corpse is not present, at month’s minds or anniversary Masses. It is placed immediately outside the sanctuary, covered with a black pall, and receives the same respect as would be accorded the corpse, being surrounded by lights, sprinkled with holy water, and incensed by the celebrant during the absolution. No flowers should be used in connection with it but the insignia of prelates or nobles may be mounted upon it.

MLA Citation

  • “catafalque“. CatholicSaints.Info. 22 August 2018. Web. 18 September 2021. <>