Gustave de Rechter, the author of this pamphlet (The Application of a New System for the Preservation of Dead Bodies, Grammont, Belgium, 1899) had, as you might guess, a very specific reason for keeping the dead from being entirely, decomposedly, dead. As the director of the School of Criminology and of Scientific Police of Belgium, Dr. de Rechter tried to find a way of preservation of bodies for forensic and legal purposes.
He followed in the footsteps of people like Alphonse Bertillon (France) and Hans Gross (Austria) in helping to establish a scientific basis for criminology in the late 19th century. In his case, the preservation of the dead would allow the bodies (of the murdered or suspiciously departed) to be re-examined at a much later date (at least months down the road) should the defense in a murder case challenge the original findings of the medical examiner.
As de Rechter points out, this was particularly true in the case of poisoning, where in 1899 the evidence would be all but dissipated
from the body following even a week of death—he maintains that his new method of preservation (via an incubated spray of formic aldehyde, or formaldehyde) would enable further inspection even months after death. De Rechter manages to forestall the inevitable, the great crumbling that awaits everything, everyone, at some point, the "distinguished thing" of Henry James' (last words), to return everything to the earth, to what Larry McMurtry (in Lonesome Dove) refers to as "nothing but a boneyard".
(The images here are from the pamphlet, with de Rechter showing the effects of his nasty spray on corpses and what they looked like after some months sleeping in their formaldehyde cocoons.)