What Are the Uses of Urns During the Ancient Times?

Urns have been used since ancient times for a variety of purposes. The word “urn” is derived from the Latin word “urna,” which means a vessel or jar.

These vessels were typically made of clay or metal and were used to store and transport liquids and other materials. However, in ancient times, urns had more significant uses besides storage.

Funerary Urns

One of the most well-known uses of urns during ancient times was as funerary objects. In many cultures, cremation was a common practice for disposing of the dead. The ashes of the deceased were often placed in an urn as a way to honor and memorialize them.

Greek Urns

In ancient Greece, funerary urns were often decorated with intricate designs and symbols that represented the deceased’s life or occupation. Additionally, some Greek urns featured scenes from mythology or historical events.

Roman Urns

Similarly, in ancient Rome, funerary urns were often adorned with intricate carvings or paintings that depicted scenes from the deceased’s life. Some Roman urns even featured portraits of the deceased.

Religious Urns

Religious urns were also used during ancient times. In some cultures, urns were used to store relics or sacred objects associated with religious figures such as saints or prophets.

Buddhist Urns

In Buddhism, urns known as “stupas” were used to house relics such as bones or teeth of Buddha and other important figures in Buddhist history.

Hindu Urns

In Hinduism, urns known as “kalasha” were used for rituals such as weddings and other ceremonies. These vessels were often filled with water and adorned with flowers and other decorations.


In conclusion, urns have been used for a variety of purposes throughout history. From storing liquids to honoring the dead and religious objects, urns have played an essential role in many cultures.

The intricate designs and symbols that adorned these vessels highlight the importance of these objects in ancient times. Even today, urns continue to be a significant part of funerary and religious practices around the world.