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Extra info for Ancient Religions of the Austronesian World: From Australasia to Taiwan
This incorporates a lot of work done by Chinese and Japanese anthropologists, along with historical sources. Ho¨llmann gives us an account of Tsou headhunting, taken from a local chronicle of 1716. We are told that whoever kills humans wins great popularity. Because of this there are reciprocal attacks, but also any stranger who is spotted on a path is killed and has his head taken. The head is cooked until the ﬂesh and skin fall off and decorated with gold. 32 According to Ho¨llmann there are two accounts of the origins of headhunting among the Tsou.
There was also a red ﬁg tree, which was surrounded on all four sides by a small fence, to emphasize its being ‘taboo’. 43 According to Ho¨llmann’s sources the Tsou used to kill twins. 44 A pregnant woman had to observe a number of taboos. She was not allowed to take part in activities linked to ceremonial offerings. She could not come near weapons or hunting equipment, and was not allowed to kill insects or catch ﬁsh. After the birth she was not allowed to leave the house to work in the ﬁelds for ten days.
Formerly the diviners performed the ‘rite of the deer’ after a successful headhunting expedition, in order to reintegrate the warriors into society. 69 Twins used to be killed at birth by the Puyuma. After an ordinary birth the father must not hunt or go to the ﬁelds for seven days. On the second day the baby is ‘introduced’ to the supernatural world by its parents, who scatter a few grains of rice. The dead used to be buried in the house. Two days after the burial the shamanesses purify the dead person’s home and family.