I’m sure everyone here has heard of the Catacombs of Paris. It is listed as one of the top 10 most haunted places in the world!
A brief history of the Catacombs:
The official name of the Catacombs is l’ossuaire municipal, the cemetery covers a small section of underground tunnels making up the “les carrières de Paris ( ” The quarries of Paris ” ) the entire tunnel is referred to as ” The Catacombs “. Since the Roman times Paris buried its dead on the outskirts of the city. The rise of Christianity brought a change about the practice of burying the faithful dead in consecrated grounds and in adjoining churches.
With the city’s expansion in the 10th century, there were many cemeteries however with the population rise in Paris the cemeteries became overcrowded and expansion was not possible. At this time only the most wealthy could afford church burials, which in the 12th century led to the opening of a central burial ground. At the end of the same century people were dependant on the church St. Opportune near the central Paris district Les Halles the church was later renamed Saint Innocents under it’s own church and parish.
The common practice for burying the dead poorer people was mass inhumation. When an evacuation in one section of the cemetery was full, it would be covered over and another one made. Very few of the dead had coffins, more often a coffin would be used again for a next burial. The residues resulting from the decaying matter, a process accelerated chemically with the use of lime entered directly into the earth caused a serious problem for a city who relied on well water.