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November 2, 2012     Post-Gazette
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November 2, 2012
 

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Page 2 POST-GAZETTE, NOVEMBER 2, 2012 by Prof Edmund Turiello ~~ A weekly column highlighting some of the more interesting aspects of our ancestry.., our lineage.., our roots. The Roman Procession In ancient times, all funerals took place during the hours of darkness. Torches were used to light the way and also to light the funeral pyre in the case of those who were to be cre- mated. In time the funeral processions took on such splendor that laws were passed to limit expenses. The order of the funeral pro- cession was regulated by an attendant dressed in black and known as a "designator." Musicians were usually first and were followed by profes- sional mourning women. They sang a mournful song in praise of the dead person. Next came the dancers and the "Mimi" who wore a mask in the likeness of the deceased. They were allowed free license to imi- tate speech, manners and to make jests at the expense of the dead one. The most striking part of the proces- sion was probably formed by the "imagines" (wax masks) which represented the distinguished ancestors of the deceased. These masks were taken from their normal resting places in the atrium of the domus, and each was worn by one chosen to resemble as closely as possible the person whom he was supposed to repre- sent. The "imagines" was clothed in the dress of office which the prototype of the mask had held and each rode on a chariot, accompa- nied by the insignia of his office. Thus, all of the distin- guished ancestors of the deceased were present in effigy at his funeral. If the deceased was of high rank, many of the related families were also represented by their "imagines." It is said that the funeral of Marcellus (adopted son of the Emperor Augustus) con- tained about six hundred participants. Sometimes, as a special honor, crowns and other records of triumphs were carried before the bier. The bier itself was often carried by slaves who were to be liberated by the will of the deceased. Their heads were shaved and they wore a traditional skullcap. Relatives of the deceased walked behind the bier, dressed in mourning. The sons kept their heads veiled, while the daughters went with heads uncovered and with disheveled hair. Women in the procession cried aloud, pulled their hair and slapped their faces. In this order, the whole funeral train proceeded to the Forum (Continued on Page 12) Senator DiDomenico's Annual Fall Celebration a Huge Draw GUESTS SHOW STRONG SUPPORT FOR SENATOR ...... en Publica by David ThtmbuU Vote No on Ballot Question 2 Some weeks ago I wrote in this column about the Catholic Church's opposition to Question 2. I also wrote that opposi- tion to physician-assisted suicide is not narrowly religious. Reason, unaided by Scripture, but guided by Nature, leads one to reject doctor-prescribed death. The pagan Roman writer Cicero, a century before Christ, condemned suicide. Ancient Greek physician Hippocrates, five centuries be- fore Christ, in his oath, which is still used in many medi- cal schools, swore, "I will neither give a deadly drug to any- body if asked for it, nor will I make a suggestion to this effect." I am pleased to see that much of the Massachusetts medical community and disability advocacy groups have, likewise, agreed, that suicide is not an acceptable medical treatment. The list of organizations opposing Question 2 is impressive and includes: American Academy of Neurology American College of Medical Quahty American College of Physicians American Disabled for Attendant Programs Today American Medical Association American Medical Directors Association American Nurses Association American Society for Pain Management Nursing American Society of Anesthesiologists Association for Persons with Severe Handicaps Association or Programs for Rural Independent Living Autistic Self Advocacy Network Boston Center for Independent Living Cambridge Commission for Persons with Disabilities Disability Policy Consortium Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund Doctors Against Suicide Hospice and Palliative Care Federation of Massachusetts Hospice Nurses Association Mass Osteopathic Society Massachusetts Academy of Family Physicians Massachusetts Medical Society MetroWest Center for Independent Living National Council on Disability National Council on Independent Living National Hospice & Palliative Care Organization National Spinal Cord Injury Association Physicians for Compassionate Care Education Foundation The World Association of Persons with Disabilities The World Institute on Disability Western Massachusetts Pharmacists Association The proposed physician-assisted suicide ballot question is poorly written, confusing and flawed. The ballot question as written lacks safeguards, poses a safety risk and could result in depressed patients taking their life before they get mental health counseling and treatment and before they know about hospice and palliative care approaches. State Senator Sal DiDomenico welcomed over 700 supporters to a jam-packed Silver Fox Restaurant in Everett recently, which included family, educators, business leaders, local officials and union representatives.. L to R" Chelsea City .Manager~Jay-Ash, Congressman Mike Capuano. Senator DiDomenico, Lt. Governor Tii~Murray, Revere 'f EaCh item h nd-picked to guarantee your child a friendly introduction to the language and culture of Italy. Toys & Books DVDs & Cbs and Newly Arrived Clothing Italian Pinocchio Imports Mayor Dan Rizzo, Execu- tive Director of the MA Supreme Judicial Court Tom Ambrosino (and former Mayor of Revere). (Photo by Rosario Scabin, Ross Photography) DRIVERS: Getting Home is Easier Chromed out trucks w/APU's Chromed out pay package! 90% Drop & Hook CDL-A, 6 mos exp. (888) 406-9046 I I [ raway overe I 781-286-CASH I O.h in your Gold for Sack to School Money! I www.sellgoldmass.com [=$ t [.IIB l :le] ~. l IJ,lg(o]lJ ',[o]. Sj East Boston Republican Ward Committee Endorses Suffolk Downs Casino Plan The East Boston Republican Ward Committee endorses the current Caesar's/Suffolk Downs plan to develop a casino at the East Boston/Revere racetrack. The Committee believes a casino, hotel and ,related facilities will boost employment for "l:-a=st 'B0 ston and other local residents. After polling its members individually this summer the Committee affirmed this endorsement by majority vote of members attending its September 30, 2012 meeting. 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