Open main menu

Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 17, 1906.djvu/134

This page needs to be proofread.


122 Reviews.

presence of the spirits of the dead, which are feasted after a hunt. No other worship of or offerings to them have been reported. A big black boulder is regarded as the abode of one powerful spirit, who seems to absorb all the ghosts of the common dead. No •one passes this place without making an offering of fruit or food. This spirit, known as Anito, is the cause of serious disease, while minor maladies are due to lesser Anitos. If small-pox breaks out it is supposed to be due to " some one who has cut down a tree, or killed an animal, belonging to a spirit which has invoked the aid of the supreme spirit in inflicting a more severe punishment than it can do alone" (p. 65). They have the usual shamanistic treatment in sickness. "The Manga-anito (medicine-woman) danced round the patient, and had him dance and turn somer- saults. This was to make the spirit sorry he had chosen such an unstable abiding place. Finally, she took hold of his hand, gave a mighty tug, and then dropped back stiff. The spirit had passed from the body of the patient to her body " (p. 66). With some omens of meeting this seems to represent all their religious beliefs.

The monograph is, as is usual with American publications of this kind, provided with a series of excellent illustrations. It serves, on the whole, to emphasise the contrast between the attitude of the enlightened Government of the United States towards the survey of the savage races under their control as compared with that of our Indian and Colonial authorities.

W. Crooke.

Among the Indians of the Paraguayan Chaco : A Story OF Missionary Work in South America. Told by W. Barbrooke Grubb, and his fellow-workers in the Chaco Mission of the South American Missionary Society. Edited by Gertrude Wilson, B.Litt. London : Charles Murray & Co., 1904.

Missionaries have a great opportunity for anthropological study, but how few of them are really sufficiently interested in the