Thomas L. McDonald has an interesting posting in the Catholic Channel of Patheos: Burial in Ancient Israel Part 7: The Burial of Christ:
This 100,000 year history of human burial converges on a single point and a single day: a Friday in Jerusalem around the year 30 AD. Jesus of Nazareth dies on the cross, and his body is taken down at the request of a wealthy man from Arimathea named Joseph. The sun is setting and the sabbath is about to begin, when no burial will be allowed. Joseph must get the body of Jesus in a tomb or it will not be properly buried within 24 hours after death, as required by Jewish law.
As the author tells us, this latest posting concludes a series about graves and tombs in the ancient Levant, from the Paleolithic Period until the time of Christ. The entire series can be found here.
I recommend the entire series.