The 5 barrows of Nové Košariská are, even 50 years after their excavation, one of the key sites of the northeast alpine Hallstatt culture. In the article selected features of the burials are analysed and being set into relation with each other. Remarkable is the high diversity referring to grave construction and furnishing. The reasons for these strong differences can probably be attributed to the general developments and upheaval which are marked by the Hallstatt period. Obviously there was no set of detailed rules established with regard to the construction of elite burials. Another topic is the understanding of the grave as a whole. The current and widely accepted interpretation of the grave furnishing as a symposion is challenged and an alternative approach is presented. The elaborately only for the grave purpose crafted vessels as well as their placement within the burial can be interpreted as result of worship activities for the dead. If this interpretation is correct, the universal phenomenon of ancestor veneration could be identified as a reason for the rich and outstanding equipment of the graves. Ancestor veneration has, on a spiritual level, the function to make sure that the dead people do not disturb the life of the living and even that they support their descendants from the world beyond. In the material world the purpose of ancestor veneration can be seen in establishing or legitimizing the claim for power or for the dominance over a particular territory by a group of people.