Cannibalism – People Who Eat Other People

  • April 06, 2010
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The Maori

One of the most well documented instances of cannibalism involves the Maori people of New Zealand. Cannibalism has been a part of Maori warfare since time immemorial and they didn’t stop at killing and eating their rival tribesmen. When the crew of a British ship, the Boyd, were accused of unjustly flogging the son of a Maori chieftain, his father’s warriors took revenge by killing and eating 66 of the ship’s passengers and crew. The event became known as the ‘Boyd Massacre’. The Maori also cannibalized European settlers in the ensuing wars and rebellions against the British Empire, as recently as 1869.

Of course, the Maori kicked the habit long ago and now live a healthy flesh-free lifestyle. The same can also be said of all the cultures on this list, with the possible exception of the Korowai. But it cannot be said that the archaic act of cannibalism has completely disappeared; every now and then it rears its ugly, flesh-chewing head to remind us of our gruesome and barbaric past. Sometimes this occurs in extreme survival situation (which can perhaps be forgiven) but it can also take the form of a single crazed lunatic.


Here are some crazy people that, for whatever reason, have eaten other people:


Jean-Bédel Bokassa

The self declared Emperor of the Central African Republic, Jean-Bedel Bokassa, has been tried, but never convicted, of cannibalism. In 1979, when a number of school children protested against the introduction of new, mandatory school uniforms Emperor Bokassa gobbled the naughty children up. Some one hundred school children were massacred and, while Bokassa clearly could not have eaten all of them, he is thought to have beaten many of them to death himself. Bokassa’s Ugandan contemporary, Idi Amin, is also rumored to have eaten his enemies.



Dorangel Vargas

Dorangal Vargas, otherwise known as the ‘Hannibal Lecter of the Andes’, killed and ate at-least ten men while homeless and living in a park in San Cristobal, Venesuala. Vargas used the park as a hunting ground for two years before being arrested in 1999, after which he has spoken openly about his crimes. “I make a very tasty stew out of the tongue” Vargo told reporters “and I use the eyes to make a healthy and nutritious soup.”

dorangel vargas


Armin Meiwes

Post-modern cannibal Armin Meiwes, Germany’s ‘lonely hearts cannibal’ met his victim on the website ‘Canibal Café’ where he had placed a small ad for a ‘well-built 18 to 30 year-old to be slaughtered and then consumed’. Amazingly, his ad was answered by Bernd Jürgen Brandes and the two agreed to meet up for a bizarre dinner party. What happened next would be enough to put most people off their bratwurste. Apparently it was Brandes that had insisted on having his penis bitten off by Miewes, but while Miewes was able to burst both of Brande’s testes with his teeth, he had to resort to using a kitchen knife. Brandes then attempted to eat his own penis raw but found that it was ‘too chewy’. Attempting to sautee the penis, Meiwes overcooked it and fed it to his dog. The dismembered Brandes was then given a cocktail of alcohol and painkillers and left bleeding in a bathtub for three hours before he was finally killed. His body was chopped up and stored in Meiwes freezer for later consumption and his bones were ground up in an attempt to make flower.

armin meiwes


Big Lurch

When Texas rap artist Antron Singleton, AKA Big Lurch, got the munchies after smoking PCP he decided to make a meal of his friend, Tynisha Ysais while under the influence of the drug PCP. Tearing her lungs open with a knife, he removed her lungs, licked his lips and tucked right in. When police arrived they also found bite marks in her face. Singleton was found naked and covered in blood and instantly arrested. Needless to say, he had a terrible headache in the morning.

big lurch


Imperial Japanese Army

During World War II the Japanese army conducted many acts of cannibalism against prisoners of war. In what seemed to be an organized and systematic activity, those crazy Japs had their fill of captured soldiers from many countries, including America, India and Australia. In one documented incident, prisoners were killed and eaten on a daily basis in a New Guniea internment camp. According to witnesses at-least 100 people were taken away to be eaten. One retired serviceman claims that the Japanese even amputated limbs on an ‘as needed’ basis, keeping the victim alive and the meat fresh.

japanese army

Written by Mark Ball – Copyrighted © Image Sources

Image sources:

  • - The Carib:
  • - The Aztec:
  • - The Native Americans:
  • - Africa:
  • - Fiji:
  • - The Korowai:
  • - The Maori:
  • - Jean-Bédel Bokassa:
  • - Dorangel Vargas:
  • - Armin Meiwes:
  • - Big Lurch:
  • - Imperial Japanese Army: