Feasting, in a way

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Posted by Sarah M. on December 30, 2000 at 21:58:58:

Dear Friends,

I've been playing catch-up and I notice that Duncan's sacrifice has been much on people's minds. I've been thinking about it myself lately, as I'm reading the journals of Bougainville, he who read the letter for Montcalm. His journals are an amazing study of the New World from the eyes of the Old World, yet from a scholarly and astute man. Having got on the scales this morning, overeating is also on my mind. One good way to really turn the stomach and stop eating is to think about the following excerpts from his journal. Enjoy!

1. "June 12 [1757]...The Delawares and the Shawnees have made many Prisoners, brought back scalps, destroyed several houses, carried away cattle, and even entire families. They have eaten an English office whose pallor and plumpness tempted them. Such cruelties are frequent enough among the Indians of La Belle Riviere. Our domesticated Indians, softened by the glimmerings of Christianity which they have received, are no longer cruel in cold blood, but one cannot say, however, that their character has changed."

2. "July 6 [1757]: Courier from Carillon. ...Abnakis or Iroquois...took up their trail and captured two Mahicans and a wounded Englishman. The Indians brought to of them to me and tore the other apart, and, as he was good, they ate him. The Englishman, whom I questioned, spoke little; he is badly wounded. The Mahican is more open. ... The Englishman will die, and the Mahican, whose flesh is not appetizing, will be burned."

3. "July 24 [1757]: "The Indians jumped into the water and speared them like fish... The English, terrified by the shooting, the sight, the cries, and the agility of these monsters, surrendered almost without firing a shot. The rum which was in the barges and which the Indians immediate drank caused them to commit great cruelties. They put in the pot and ate three prisoners, and perhaps others were so treated... A horrible spectacle to European eyes."

4. "July 25 [1757]: ...The gneral ppased the day holding council with the Indians... They made very touching visits to their prisoners, caressing them, taking them white bread, wishing to see that they lacked nothing. Just the same, they ate one of them up at this camp. It is impossible to stop them."

5. "July 28 [1757]: ... An English corpse came floating by the Indians' camp. They crowded around it with loud cries, drank it's blood, and put its pieces in the kettle."

6. "August 15 [1757]: At two o'clock in the presence of the entire town they killed one of them, put him in a kettle, and forced his unfortunate compatriots to eat him."

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