Warder and Dublin Weekly Mail

A Gypsy Funeral

Saturday, 22nd October 1842

For some time a numerous tribe of Gypsys have pitched their tents in Cut Hedge road, Little Coggeshall. One of the party died last week. As soon as life was extinct much ceremony was observed; The body was dressed in a Scotch plaid gown, silk stockings, and satin shoes; wax tapers were burnt, and the remains lay in state.

Instructions for the funeral were given to the undertaker, and no expense was spared to render it most respectable in all its appointments. The coffin was of fine oak, studded with gilt nails, and bore a brass plate, upon which was engraved

"Cecilia Chilcott - Died Sept. 29, 1842, aged 28 years"

On Sunday last the funeral took place, and her remains were interred in the parish churchyard, by the Rev. W. Wigson, curate, in the presence of a concourse of between 4,000 and 5,000 persons. The pall was supported by four respectably dressed females deeply veiled, and about 30 of the tribe followed, all dressed in black, the men wearing black cloth cloaks. The greatest decorum was observed by the whole of the party, and a more respectable funeral, we understand, has not been seen in the town for many years.

We are credibly informed, that in the coffin were placed by the side of the body the deceased's watch and a purse of money, for the protection of which a person is appointed to watch the grave for some weeks.

The father of the deceased, attributing the death of his daughter to removal by the Police, threatens to take legal proceedings against the parties.

- Chelmsford Chronicle.

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Warder and Dublin Weekly Mail - Saturday, 22nd October 1842
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  • Cecilia Chilcott