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The Greek's did place a lot of importance on the body after death. This is why Priam begged for Hector's body back. A proper burial was very important to the Greek's. Hector was brave and his death was tragic. I guess that's why it took twelve days to perform funeral rites!
In many Greek texts, the honorable burial of a person is a very important issue. To defile a body by dragging it behind a chariot is incredibly disrespectful. To the Greeks, this is horrific. The reason they were burning the bodies of the slain in the Iliad were to protect the bodies from being defiled. An in-depth explanation of the customs and historical background of Greek funerals can be found at this enotes link: http://www.enotes.com/iliad/history-culture-troy
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