Interesting facts about dying
Did you know?
- You are more likely to be killed by a champagne cork than by a poisonous spider.
- Fleas have the distinction of killing more people than all the wars man has ever fought. The "Black Death" plague, which killed a quarter of Europe's population in the 14th century, was caused by germs transmitted from rodents to humans by fleas.
- Dr. Alice Chase, who wrote "Nutrition for Health" and numerous books on the science of proper eating, died of malnutrition.
- When Thomas Edison died in 1941, Henry Ford captured his dying breath in a bottle.
- In 1845, President Andrew Jackson's pet parrot was removed from his funeral for swearing.
- It is now possible to be buried in space. An American company called Memorial Space Flights will launch a "symbolic portion" of your loved one's cremated remains into outer space fo a fee.
- Attila the Hun is thought to have died from a nose bleed on his wedding night.
- 60% of adults don't make a Will*.
- Only one in two billion people will live to 116 or older.
- In Italy it is illegal to make coffins out of anything but wood or nutshells.
- The cost of dying (including death-related costs such as probate, headstones and flowers in addition to the basic cost of a funeral) is currently £7,114**.
There are over 200 Euphemisms for death in the English language
The English language contains many euphemisms related to dying and death. The practice of using euphemisms for death is likely to have originated with the belief that to speak the word "death" was to invite death. This may explain why death is a taboo subject in many English-speaking cultures. The use of euphemisms often involves metaphors for the person moving into another state or another place which seems to be more acceptable for those dealing with bereavement than using the term ‘dead’.
Some common euphemisms for death include:
- Fading quickly
- Kick the bucket
- Brown bread (cockney rhyming slang)
- Gone to a better place
- Passed away
- Passed on
- Checked out
- Bit the big one
- Bitten the dust
- Popped their clogs
- Pegged it
- Taken to Jesus
- Met his maker
- Turned their toes up
- Cashed in their chips
- Fallen off their perch
- Given up the ghost
- Gone south
- Shuffled off this mortal coil (from William Shakespeare's Hamlet),
- Run down the curtain and joined the Choir Invisible (a Christian reference to the angels in heaven)
- Pushing up daisies
- Sleeping the big sleep
- Checking out the grass from underneath
- Six feet under
- The last breath
- Paying a debt to nature