Brewer's: Funeral Banquet
The custom of giving a feast at funerals came to us from the Romans, who not only feasted the friends of the deceased, but also distributed meat to the persons employed.
Thrift, thrift, Horatio! the funeral baked meats Did coldly furnish forth the marriage tables.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894