chapter  VI
45 Pages

CEREMONIAL MUTILATIONS AND KINDRED CUSTOMS

UNDER the general heading of ceremonial mutilations we shall examine various rites of blood-letting, scarification, finger-cutting, etc., which form, perhaps, the strangest expression of the Indian’s desire to tamper with his body for certain practical or seemingly self-decorative ends. In a previous chapter1 I have incidentally touched upon some practices of this kind, pointing out the main ideas underlying them. It now remains to set forth these ideas in detail and to show how they apply to different occasions on which such sanguinary operations are resorted to.