What are common phrases to use in Italian to honour or pay respect to someone who has passed?
Is "Riposa in pace" used (literally Rest in peace)?
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Yes, "Riposa in pace" is used.
"(Che) la terra ti sia lieve" ("May the soil be light on you") is also used.
The first expression is more traditional and common (and it could sound more detached, generic and formal) while the second could be regarded as more friendly/confidential; but I don't insist too much on this distintion as this could be subjective and dabatable.