Why Do People Say "six Feet Under"? Why Are People Buried That Far Below The Ground? Let's Find Out!

Now, it bears noting first of all that these days, not everyone is buried six feet under! The grave length varies from country to country, city to city, and sometimes, even cemetery to cemetery. In many regions, there are laws relating to grave length, not all of which are consistently followed. But many of these laws are not based on the more general idea of "six feet under" – that graves should be six feet deep. Of course, you might think that you don't need that much room to house a single person. And you don't, as the related saying, "dig a shallow grave" sometimes implies! Many graves are half as deep, or are even wider than they are deep, depending on the size of the person they're dug for, the circumstances, and the methodology involved.
There are, of course, some practical reasons to dig six feet deep. In some countries, such as Canada, people have called for deeper graves to protect the bodies – in 2013, the Canadian Burial Act began to state that graves were to be eight feet deep, not six! And in older times, where caskets were not as common, deeper graves were useful to prevent animals from digging up the body. Fundamentally, digging deeper helps protect the dead, but it's not the original reason that graves are supposed to be "six feet under [the ground]". So what was it that caused people to dig six feet deep, consistently, back when the phrase was invented? And when, exactly, was it invented to begin with? The answer begins with the plague, but gets a little more interesting than just that! CONTINUE ON THE NEXT PAGE...
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