From the British Museum
Egyptian , maybe 3000BC
"What Song the Syrens sang, or what name Achilles assumed when he hid himself among women, though puzzling Questions are not beyond all conjecture. What time the persons of these Ossuaries entered the famous Nations of the dead, and slept with Princes and Counsellours, might admit a wide solution. But who were the proprietaries of these bones, or what bodies these ashes made up, were a question above Antiquarism. "
Sir Thomas Browne, "Hydriotaphia, Urn Burial, or a Discourse of the Sepulchral Urns lately found in Norfolk", 1658