What's in a Funeral?

Greater Accra Region Ghana Crazy Funeral Coffins

In Ghana they take funerals very serious as to properly respect and honour their loved ones when they pass. Like many funerals the amount of mourners that attend illustrates their status. The people of Ghana spend large sums of money on funerals sometimes more than $20,000. In an article from CNN they even say that the people of Ghana advertise the funerals on billboards to get people to come mourn.

The most extraordinary part of Ghanaian funeral traditions is the caskets that they use to honour the deceased. These intricate coffins can be anything from a fish, to a camera, or even a pepper! This tradition started around 1950 when important people such as priests were buried in these extravagant coffins. Since 1960 these coffins have become popularised in Accra funeral tradition. The idea stems back to their religious belief that life goes on after life on Earth. They believe that after this life you go on to a higher life where you can watch over loved ones on Earth. Since they believe that their deceased watch over them they try to please them with beautiful coffins shaped with their favourite things.



Newton, P. (2014, March 11). The long goodbye: Why funerals are big deals in Ghana. [Web log post]. Retrieved June 13, 2018 from


Woets, R. (Photograph). (Feburary 2008). Accra, Ghana. Funeral of Samuel Torto [digital image]. Retrieved from




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