A catafalque is a raised platform used to support a what?
A catafalque is a raised bier, box, or similar platform, often movable, that is used to support the casket, coffin, or body of the deceased during a funeral or memorial service. Following a Roman Catholic Requiem Mass, a catafalque may be used to stand in place of the body at the Absolution of the dead or used during Masses of the Dead and All Souls Day.
The term originates from the Italian catafalco, which means scaffolding. The most notable Italian catafalque was the one designed for Michelangelo by his fellow artists in 1564. An elaborate and highly decorated roofed surround for a catafalque, common for grand funerals of the Baroque era, may also be called a castrum doloris.