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Coffin Vs. Casket: What’s the Difference?

Coffin Vs. Casket: What’s the Difference?

Coffin Vs. Casket: What’s the Difference?

Planning a funeral is a challenging and confusing process that often raises many questions you couldn’t have anticipated. For some, the difference between a coffin and a casket is one of them. Most people have heard both terms used for burial containers that hold the remains of a loved one. The names are often even used interchangeably. However, there are some differences between a casket and a coffin. Here, we’ll explain the key differences between caskets vs. coffins so you can make an informed choice about your loved one’s final resting place.

What to Know About Coffins and Caskets

Coffins and caskets are both specially designed boxes made to contain the remains of a loved one. They are typically used during funerals and burial if the family has not chosen cremation. Both caskets and coffins are frequently made of wood (though caskets are sometimes composed of other materials) and lined with cloth interiors. While a coffin may feature a simpler appearance, modern coffins and caskets are beautifully designed to provide a comfortable and dignified resting place for loved ones. 

A casket is the burial container you’re most likely familiar with. That’s because it’s the option most commonly used in modern times. Coffins were traditionally used in America before the late 1800s. As funeral services changed during the Civil War, caskets became the preferred choice for honoring the departed.

Main Differences Between Coffins and Caskets

While coffins and caskets are very similar in many ways, there are some notable differences between the two. The most immediately noticeable is the difference in shape. However, a few other distinguishing features also set them apart. 

The Casket

A casket is rectangular shaped and is typically composed of wood or metal with rails or handles along the side. The interior is lined with plush cloth, and a hinged lid can swing up for a full or partial viewing. Caskets are used for funeral services for both cremations and burials. If the family has not chosen cremation, the casket is lowered into the ground during the burial ceremony. 

The Coffin

A coffin has six sides and is tapered at the head and the feet with ample width for the shoulders. They are typically made of wood, with a cloth-lined interior similar to a casket. The lid doesn’t feature hinges and must be lifted off. Coffins usually don’t have any handles or rails for carrying. Anything adorning the outside of a coffin is known as “coffin furniture,” which shares information about the person’s wealth. Since the tapered shape of a coffin requires less materials, a coffin is often less expensive than a casket. Like caskets, coffins can be used for funeral services and burial. 

Are Coffins Still an Option for Burial?

While caskets are typically used for most burials today, coffins are still an option. However, finding a coffin manufacturer may be more difficult since coffins are used less frequently. At Robinson Funeral Home in Easley, South Carolina, we can help you find the information you need about caskets and coffins to plan the funeral service that will best honor your loved one. 

Funeral Services in Greenville

Losing a loved one is never easy, and making choices about the funeral can be stressful. At Robinson Funeral Home, it’s our goal to support you in your time of need with services that supply you with information and lift your burdens. We’ll help you take care of all the details from start to finish to plan a service that honors your loved one and gives your family the closure they need. Contact us to learn more about different burial options and our funeral services.

Image Credits:Perova Evgeniya/Shutterstock