suttee


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Related to suttee: thuggee, Thugee

suttee

(sŭ'tē`, sŭ`tē') [Skt. sati=faithful wife], former Indian funeral practice in which the widow immolated herself on her husband's funeral pyre. The practice of killing a favorite wife on her husband's grave has been found in many parts of the world; it was followed by such peoples as the Thracians, the Scythians, the ancient Egyptians, the Scandinavians, the Chinese, and peoples of Oceania and Africa. Suttee was probably taken over by Hinduism from a more ancient source. Its stated purpose was to expiate the sins of both husband and wife and to ensure the couple's reunion beyond the grave, but it was encouraged by the low regard in which widows were held. The practice was not universal throughout Hindu history. It was abolished by law in British India in 1829, but isolated cases of voluntary suttee have occurred into the 20th cent. See also funeral customsfuneral customs,
rituals surrounding the death of a human being and the subsequent disposition of the corpse. Such rites may serve to mark the passage of a person from life into death, to secure the welfare of the dead, to comfort the living, and to protect the living from the
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 and suicidesuicide
[Lat.,=self-killing], the deliberate taking of one's own life. Suicide may be compulsory, prescribed by custom or enjoined by the authorities, usually as an alternative to death at the hands of others, or it may be committed for personal motives.
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.

Bibliography

See E. J. Thompson, Suttee (1928).

suttee

former practice of self-immolation by widow on husband’s pyre. [Hinduism: Brewer Dictionary, 1049]
References in periodicals archive ?
It is worth noting that among these, Daly's discussions of suttee, foot binding, genital mutilation, and gynecology, in particular, register a shift in method from that which typifies her previous works: they analyze practices found in other cultures more than the religious myths that predominate in those cultures.
We must not, as we do now, permit untouchability and forbid suttee, abolish tyranny in one state and leave it in another, have our right hand Eastern and our left hand Western.
La cronica ha sido analizada en otras oportunidades, en especial por Alberto Rex Gonzalez (1979), quien interpreto como suttee a este ritual de sacrificio de mujeres en honor a un cacique fallecido, y como un indicador de que este pueblo estaba organizado como un senorio ecuestre y no como una sociedad igualitaria segun se sostenia hasta ese momento.
British rulers also introduced major social reforms, such as banning the custom of suttee under which a Hindu widow was burnt to death on the funeral pyre of her dead husband.
1829 Under British rule, suttee - whereby a widow commits suicide by joining her husband's funeral pyre - was made illegal in India.
The practice of suttee by Hindu widows may have sprung from a supposed religious conviction.
But the reader's sympathies do not lie with Kriti as the ancient customs of suttee and, for those not burnt with their husband's body, a lifetime of widowhood, threaten the girls who are, after all, only children.
18) International history is rife with interventions justified by high-sounding principles--ending the slave trade or suttee or introducing law and order and civilized behavior--turning into self-serving, imperialist "rescues" in which the intervener stays to profit and control.
Ferris left the scene in a car driven by his accomplice, London crook Henry Suttee, then gave the guns to another gang member, Constance Howarth, who was driving a second car.
25) Shippey calls this very close to suttee ("Tolkien out-Wagners Wagner" 3).