Death is unique. It is unlike aught else in its certainty and its incidents. A

corpse in some respects is the strangest thing on earth. A man but yesterday

breathed and thought and walked among us has passed away. Something has

gone. The body is left still and cold, and is all that is visible to mortal eye of the

man we knew. Around it cling love and memory. Beyond it may reach hope. It

must be laid away. And the law-that rule of action which touches all human

things-must touch also this thing of death. It is not surprising that the law

relating to this mystery of what death leaves behind cannot be precisely brought

within the letter of all the rules regarding corn, lumber, and pig iron. And yet

the body must be buried or disposed of. If buried, it must be carried to the place

of burial. And the law, in its all-sufficiency, must furnish some rule, by

legislative enactment or analogy, or based on some sound legal principle, by

which to determine between the living questions of the disposition of the dead

and the rights surrounding their bodies.