From the middle of the 1500s deceased people were honored with an eulogy (Leichenpredigt). This custom was established shortly after the Reformation in the center of Protestantism. The pratice was taken over by Calvinists as well as followers of Zwingli and to a lesser degree by Catholics. The reformer Martin Luther was the first to introduce a Leichenpredigt. They came as published pamphlets and contained detailed information about the deceased, his life, his family, his ancestors. They were at first popular among the wealthy and famous males, later were published for all ordinary citizen as well.
For further information and where to access Leichenpredigten see http://web.uni-marburg.de/fpmr/