Embalming is the art and science of preserving human remains by treating them (in its modern form with chemicals) to forestall decomposition. The intention is to keep them suitable for public display at a funeral, for religious reasons, or for medical and scientific purposes such as their use as anatomical specimens. The three goals of embalming are sanitization, presentation, and preservation (or restoration). Embalming has a very long and cross-cultural history, with many cultures giving the embalming processes a greater religious meaning.
Embalming is distinct from taxidermy. Embalming preserves the human body intact, whereas taxidermy is the recreation of an animal’s form often using only the creature’s skin mounted on an anatomical form.