Incineratio is a name in the Romish Church for the consecration of a certain quantity of ashes, and the sprinkling of them over the heads of the officiating clergy and the worshipping congregation, with the following admonition, pronounced by the officiating priest: 'Memento quod cinis es, et in cinerem reverteris" (Remember that dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return). The custom is believed to have originated with Gregory the Great (towards the close of the 6th century), but it was not fully established till towards the end of the 12th century, when it received the sanction of pope Celestine III. Gregory the Great is in all probability also the founder of Ash- Wednesday, which is supposed to derive its name from the above ceremonial service generally performed on that day. See Riddle, Christian Antiquities, p. 667; Siegel, Handb. d. Christ. Kirchl. Alterth. 1, 141; Eadie, Eccles. Dict. p. 324. SEE ASHES; SEE ASH-WEDNESDAY.

Bible concordance for INCINERATION.

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