Page:The Melanesians Studies in their Anthropology and Folklore.djvu/166

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where they are supposed to haunt. Men who know these and have access to them, take mats, food, pigs, living or cooked, into the sacred place and leave them there. At Lepers' Island they drugu to the men who have access to spirits, wui, in connexion with stones, giving money and pigs to them for their intercession; but offerings are not commonly made directly to wui, or to ghosts either. Offerings are made at sea near certain dangerous rocks; a tuft of pig's hair or a fowl's feather from the cargo, or a bit of food, is thrown into the sea for Tagaro, that he may give a safe passage to the canoe. Bishop Patteson noted in the course of his last voyage, that at Ambrym it was the practice for great men to burn a pig entirely, without any accompanying prayer, in their Suqe, with the view of obtaining mana. This must be looked upon as a sacrificial act.

Note.—The sacrifices of the Solomon Islands may well he traced to the desire of making the deceased still sharers of the common meal; what is offered and burnt is common food. The further step of begging the offended ghost to take all and spare the sick is taken at Saa and San Cristoval. It should be remarked that there is nothing whatever to connect these sacrifices with the buto (page 32), which, if anything, may be taken for a totem. To connect the offering of money, in the Banks' Islands, to a spirit who is never the ghost of a man, nor at all the animating spirit of a natural object, with the sharing of the common meal with the deceased, is much more difficult. If there be a Melanesian sacrifice to a god it is to a vui. To offer money is apparently to give what man most values, and what the spirit also loves.