A framework of wood or metal placed over the coffin or tomb of a deceased person, and covered with a pall; also, a temporary canopy bearing wax lights and set up in a church, under which the coffin was placed during the funeral ceremonies.
Middle English hersea harrow-shaped structure for holding candles over a coffinfrom Old French hercefrom Medieval Latin herciafrom Latin hirpexhirpic-harrowprobably from Oscan hirpuswolf (alluding to its teeth)
Her body had been cut free and moved to the downstairs to await a hearse from Montrose.
I have been driving a hearse for the last 25 years " .
Traditional Jews may follow the hearse for a short distance, which fulfills the mitzvah of leveyat hamet.
The ceremonies were attended by the President and Vice-President of the United States, the Chief-Justice of the Supreme Court, and a large number of eminent public men of both parties, who followed the hearse in a solemn procession, preceded by the mayor and other civic authorities, down Broadway.