Container for transport, laying out and the burial of a corpse

A coffin is a funerary box used for viewing or keeping a corpse, either for burial or cremation. The word took two different paths. Old French cofin, originally meaning basket, became coffin in English; its modern French form, couffin, means cradle. A distinction is often made between coffin and casket: the latter is generally understood to denote a four-sided or eight-sided (almost always a rectangular or long octagonal) funerary box, while a coffin is usually six-sided or twelve-sided (almost always an elongated hexagonal or elongated dodecagonal) funerary box. However, coffins having a one-piece side with a curve at the shoulder instead of a join are more commonly used in the United Kingdom (UK).
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