or piacular character among Australians, or Bushmen, or Fuegians. On the other hand, the notion of presenting food to the supernatural powers, whether ghosts or gods, is nearly universal among savages, and, where cannibals are concerned, that food is naturally human flesh. The terrible Aztec banquets of which the gods were partakers are the most noted examples of human sacrifices with a purely cannibal origin. Now there is good reason to guess that human sacrifices with no other origin than cannibalism survived even in ancient Greece. "It may be conjectured," writes Professor Robertson Smith, "that the human sacrifices offered to the Wolf Zeus (Lycæus) in Arcadia were originally cannibal feasts of a Wolf tribe. The first participants in the rite were, according to later legend, changed into wolves; and in later times at least one fragment of the human flesh was placed among the sacrincial portions derived from other victims, and the man who ate it was believed to become a were-wolf." It is the almost universal rule with cannibals not to eat members of their own stock, just as they do not eat their own totem. Thus, as Professor Robertson Smith says, when the human victim is a captive or other foreigner, the human sacrifice may be regarded as a survival of cannibalism. Where, on the other hand, the victim is a fellow tribesman, the sacrifice is expiatory or piacular.
Among Greek cannibal gods we cannot fail to reckon the so-called "Cannibal Dionysus," and probably the
- Encyc. Brit., s. v. "Sacrifice."
- Plato, Rep., viii. 565, D.
- Paus., viii. 2.