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41

LEOPARD-MEN IN THE NAGA HILLS.

By J. H. HUTTON,I.C.S.

IN speakingof leopard-men I shouldlikefirstof all to makeit clearthatI have


takenthewordleopardas thetranslation oftheNaga words,becauseit is usually
the leopardthat is associatedwithNaga lycanthropists. The tiger,however, is
also so associated,
as wellas one or perhapsmoreof the smallercats. For all of
theseanimalsthereis a generictermiD mostNagalanguages, andwhena SemaNaga,
forinstance,speaksof angshuhe maymeanr a-leopardor a tiger,betweenwhich
he makes no clear distinction,or eveD a smalleranimal such as a clouded leopard,
a caraca], or the goldencat. The same applies to the AngamiNaga word
tekhu. On the otherhand the ChangNagas havedistinct words,and speakof a
tigeras saonyu,regarding theleopard,kh6nkhii, as littleless inconsiderable
thana
civetcat, khii.
All Naga tribesseemto regardtheultimateancestry ofmanand thetiger(or
leopard)as veryintimately associated. The Angamisrelatethatin the beginning
thefirstspirit,thefirsttiger,andthefirst man,werethreesonsofonemother, but
whereas themanandthespiritlookedaftertheirmother withthegreatest tenderness,
thetigerwas alwayssnarling aboutthehousegivingtrouble. Moreover, he ate his
foodraw,whilethemanate his cooked,and thespirithissmoke-dried.Atlastthe
mother gottiredoffamilysquabbles,so put up a markin thejungleand toldthe
manar,dthetigerto runto it, theonethattouchedit firstbeingdestinedto live
in villages,and theotherto livein theforest ai,djungle. By arrangement between
thespiritand theman,theformer shotan arrowat themarkwhilethe othertwo
wereracing,and themancriedoutthathe had touchedit. Thetigerarrivedwhile
it stilltrembled fromtheblow,and beingdeceivedwentawayangryto livein the
jungle.
Afterthisthemansentthecat to ask thetiger,whenhe killeda deer,to leave
hima legonthevillagewall,in virtueoftheirbrotherhood.Thecatgotthemessage
wrongand told the tigerto leave all the deerhe killed,whichstartedfiostility
between themanandthetiger. Thisstoryis foundin a moreorlessidentical form
amongtheAngami,Sema,Lhota,and RengmaNaga tribes,theSemamakingthe
tigersearchforthecorpseofhisdead mother to eat it.
Mantand the tigerare,however, stillregardedas brothers, and if an Augami
killsa tigerhe says" thegodshavekilleda tigerin thejungle" and never" I have
killeda tiger,"whilethe priestof the villageproclaims a day of abstention from
work" on accountofthedeathofan elderbrother."
42 J. H. HUTTON.-Leopard-Menin theNaga Hills.

Afterkillinga tigeror leopardthe Angamiwedgesthe mouthopen witha stick


and puts the head into runningwater,so that if the animal triesto tell the spirits
the inameofthe manwho killedhim,all that can be heardis aD inarticulategurgling
in the water. The Sema puts a stone,as well as a wedge,intothe mouthto prevent
the tigerlyin,gin wait forhim afterdeath and devouringhim on theirway to the
abode of the dead, whilehe also becomesen.titledto wear a collar of boar's tusks,
the iiksigniaof a successfulwarrior,as thoughhe had killeda man.
In some tribes whole clans are associated with the tiger; thus among the
Clhangsthe whole Hagiyang Sept of the Chongpu clan is in some vague way
inatimately connectedwithtigers(not iinthis case with leopards) and is apparently
oflycanthropic tendencies. At the same timeit is taboo for-
all trueChangsto touch
tigersat all,farmoreto combine,as men of othertribesdo,to huntthem. If a Chang
meet a tigerin the jungle he will warn it to get out of the way beforethrowinga
spear or shootingat it. Should he kill one he is undera taboo forthirtydays, and
treatsthe head in the same way as an Angami,puttingit with its mouth wedged
open underfallingwater.
The Changwilleat leopardflesh,but not of coursethat ofthe tiger. The Sema
will eat neither,the Angamiboth-but it mustbe cooked outsidethe house.
When it comes to the practiceof lycanthropywe findthat tlweAngamiNagas,
thoughbelievingthat the practiceexists and can be acquired. do not indulgein it
themselves. Like other tribes they believe in a village far to the east peopled
solelyby lycanthropists, a beliefwhichis perhapsbased on the claims of some clan
like the Choingpu-Hagiyang of the Changs,in whichall membersof the community
are believedto possessthis facultyof takingtigeror otherformsin a greateror less
degree. But the Angamialso believein the existenceof a spiing,by some said to be,
of blood, or of reddish-coloured water,fromwhichwhosodrinksbecomes a lycan-
thropist. They believe that the people of the neighbourhoodknow and shun this
sprin,g,but that the dangerto strangersis great. Moreover,when the childrenof
thatneighbourhood theysay,to dip a blade ofthatching-
are peevish,it is customary,
grassinto the springand give it to the childto suck. It stopshis wailings,but he
growsup a were-tiger.The Angami,however,does not practiselycanthropy himself,
and the only Angami villages in whichpersonswho do practiseit are found,are
those on the bordersof the Sema country,wherea large part of the populationis
Sema by origin. The Sema is an inveteratelycanthropist, and it is in that tribe
that specificexamplesare the easiest to come by.
BoththeAn,gami and Sema agreein holdingthatthereis no actualtransformation
of the body of the lycanthropist into a leopard. What he seemsto do is to project
his soul into a particularanimal with which his human body also thus becomes
very intimatelyassociated. A leopard which is thus the recipient(fromtime to
time) of a human soul may be recogaizedby havingfiveclaws on each foot,and is
called by the A.ngainimavi (whichmightmean " real man ") and by the Semas
J. H. HuTTON.-leopard-Mlenin theNagja Hills. 43

angshu amiki, an expressiona to which I will referagaia. I have myselfseen a


leopard with dew-claws(makingfiveinstead of the usual four)killedin a Rengma
village and at once assertedto be the recipientof a lycanthropist's projectedsoul.
IncidentallyI have seen,and followedin the softbed of the Dayang Riverthe tracks
of a freaktigerwhichhad apparentlyfivetoes on its fore-feet.
The lycanthropicspringin whichthe A-,gamibelieve is sometimessaid to be
situatedin the Sema country,but the Semas give an entirelydifferent account of
the way in whichtheyacquire the lyeanthropichabit.
The theoryand symptomsare clear and recognizable,and differperhapsfrom
most lycanthropists in otherparts of the world. lTheSema undergoesno physicai
transformation whatever. The " possession,"if we may termit so, is not ordinarily
inducedby any externalaid, but comes on at the biddingof spiritswhichmay not
be gairasaid,and unaderwhose influencethe man possessed entirelyloses his own
volitionin the matter. The facultycan, however,be acquired by very close and
intimateassociationwith some lycarathropist, sleepingin the same bed with him,
eatingfromthe same dish with him, and neverleaving his side for a considerable
period-two monthsis said to be the shorftest time in which the facultycan be
acquiredin thisway. It can also be acquired,accordingto some,by beingfedby a
lycanthropist with chicken-flesh and ginger,whichis given in successivecollections
of six, five,and three pieces of each togetheron crossedpieces of plantain leaf.
It is dangerous,too, to eat foodor drinkthat a lycanthropist has leftunfinished, as
the habit may thus be unwittinglyacquired. The animal whose body the lycan-
thropistmakes use of, thoughsometimesthe tiger proper(abolangshu),is usually
a leopard and is knownas angshuamiki, a word whichis said to be derivedfrom
the verb kemiki,meaningto wanderalone inathe jungle fordays together,sincemen
who do this are most liable to the possession. It may be observed,however,that
the root miki-also means " to bite."' Cowardlyand worthlessmena, if theyacquire
thehabit,make use ofthe bodyofa redcat (angshuakinu,probably= Felis aurata,
the goldencat). The habit is veryfarfromdesired. No one wantsto be possessed
by the habit, and it is, on the contrary,fearedas a source of danger and a great
wearinessto the flesh.
The soul usuallyentersinto the leopardduringsleep and returnsto thebhuman
body with daylight,but it may remainin the leopard forseveral days at a time,
in whichcase the human body, thoughconscious,is lethargic. It (i.e., the human
body) goes to the fieldsand followsthe usual routineof life,but is not able to com-
municate intelligibly,or at any rate intelligenatly, with other persons until the
possessionexpiresforthe time being. The soul, however,is moreor less conscious
ofits experiencesin leopardformand can to some extentrememberand relatethem
whena it has returnedto its humanconsciousness. Duringsleepthesoul is theleopard

it also means " to tell lies."


1 Incidentally,
44 J. H. HUTTON.-Leopard-Menin theNaga Hills.

withits full faculties,but when the human body is wide awake the soul is only
semi-consciously, if at all, aware of its doings as a leopard, unless under the
influenceof some violentemotionexperiencedby the leopard.
The possessionis accompaniedby veryseverepains and swellingsin the knees,
elbows and small of the back in the human body, both duringand consequenton
the possession. These pains are said to be sucb as would result fromfar and
cor,tinuousmarchingor fromremaininglong periodsin an unaccustomedposition.
Duringsleep at the time of possessionthe limbs move convulsively,as the legs of a
dog move when,it is dreaming. A were-leopardof the Tizu Valley,in a paroxysm
at such a time,bit one of his wife'sbreastsoff. When the leopardis beinghunted
by men,the human body behaves like a lunatic,leaping and throwingitselfabout
in its efforts
to escape. Underthesecircumstances the relativesofthe were-leopard
feed bim up with gingeras fast as possiblein orderto make him more active, so
that the leopard-body,on whichhis lifedepends,may have the agilityto escape its
pursuers.
Were-leopardsare particularlyliable to possessionbetweenthe expiryof the
old and the risingof the new moon. Those possessedare liable to a special sortof
disease whichis believedto attacktigersand leopardsgenerally,butno humanbeings
except were-leopards. When the leopard is wounded,corresponding woundsappear
upon the human body of the were-leopard, usually in the formof boils, and when
the leopardis killedthe humanbody dies also. It is, however,possibleapparently
forthe soul to throwoffthe possessionpermanently as old age is approached. The
fatherof Inato, Chiefof Lumitsami,got rid of the habit by touchingthe fleshof a
leopard. The village had killed one and he carriedhomethe head. Afterthat, he
explained,he could no longerassociate withthe leopard kind. It is generallyheld,
and doubtlessnot without some substratumoftruth,that a man underthe influence
of the possessioncan be quieted by feedinghim withchickendung. Probablythis
producesnausea.
Possessionis not confinedto men. Women,also becomewere-leopards and are
far more destructiveas such than men are. Of men,those wbo have taken heads
are most dangerous,and are believedto kill as many men as leopardsor tigersas
theyhave done as warriors.
The actions of the leopard's body and of the human body of tbe were-leopard
are closelyassociated. As has been noticed,if the human limbs are conafined the
leopard's freedomof action is restricted,and troublesomewere-leopardsare said
to be sometimesdestroyedin this way.
On one occasionthe eldersof a large Ao village (Ungma) came to me forper-
missionto tie up a certainmanain the village,whilethey bunted a leopard which
had been givinga greatdeal oftrouble. The man in,question,who was, by.theway,
a Christianconvert,also appearedto protestagainstthe action of the villageelders.
He said that he was verysorrythat he was a were-leopard;be did not want to be
J. H. HUTTON.-Leopard-Menin theNaga Hills. 45

one,anadit was not his fault,but seeingthat he was one,he supposedthathis leopard
body must kill to eat, and if it did not, both the leopard and himselfwould die.
He said that if he weretied up the leopardwould certainlybe killedand he would
die. To tie him up and bunt the leopard was, he said, sheermurder. In the end
I gave leave to the eldersto tie the man up and hunt the leopard,but told them
that if the man died as a resultof theirkillingthe leopard,whoeverhad speared
the leopardwouldof-coursebe tried,and no doubthanged,formurder,and the elders
committedfor abetmentof the same. On this the eldersunanimouslyrefusedto
take advantage of my permissionto tie up the man. I was sorryforthis,though
I had foreseenit, as it would have been an interestingexperiment.
My informationas to were-leopardswas obtained directlyeitherfromwere-
leopards themselvesor their relatives,friends,and chiefs. UnfortunatelyI have
not so farsucceededin seeinga man actually at the momentof possession. I have
had the marksof woundsshownme by men who claim that theywerethe resultof
woundsinflictedon theirleopard bodies. Kiyezu of Nikoto,now Chiefof Kiyezu-
Nagami, who used to be a were-leopardin his youth,can show the markson the
frontand the back of his leg above the knee wherehe had been shot,as a leopard,
long ago by a sepoy of the MilitaryPolice outpost at Wokha with a Martinirifle.
The marks,in corresponding positionson the frontand back of the thigh,looked
like markscaused by bad boils. Zukiya of Kolhopu village showedme fairlyfresh
marksabout his waist whichhe said weretwo monthsold, and caused by shotwhich
had hit his leopard body, and the markslooked as thoughthey mighthave been
caused by shot. Ghokwi,the Chiefof Zukiya's village,said that Zukiyawas in the
habit of pointingout the remainsof pigs and dogs killed by him in leopard form,
so that theirownersmightgatherup whatremained. He said that he had a quarrel
with his own brother,one of whose pigs he had killed and eaten by accident.
Ghokwimentionedthe names of various people whose animals Zukiya had killed
and eaten.' Sakhuto, Chiefof K-huivi,showed a wound in his back which was
quite new on March 1st, 1913, which he said was the result of some one having
shot at him when he was in leopard forma few days before. The wound in the
human body does not, under such circumstances,appear at once. It affectsthe
same place in the human body as the originalwound did the leopard, but takes
severaldays to appear.
In March,1919, an Angamiinterpreter, Resopu of Cheswezuma,at that time
workingwithme in camp, woundeda large tigernear Melomi. Threeor fourdays
later the Head Interpreterof the Deputy-Commissioner's staff,a verywell-known,
highlyintelligentand reliableman, Nihu of Kohima,happenedto meeta sick Sema
road muharrir, Saiyi of Zumethi,beingcarriedhome. The man,who was employed
near Melomi,complainedof having had an accident,but on being pressedseveral
1 Accordingto some a were-leopard who killscattlemay be foundin the morningto have
bits of theirfleshstickingto his teeth.
46 J. H. HUTTON.-Leopard-Menin theNaga Hills.

timesfordetails, admittedthat he had no externalinjurythat could be seen, but


was suffering fromthe effectsof the woundsinflictedby Resopu on his tigerform,
havingvery severe pains in his neck or shoulderand abdomen and beinghaunted
by the horridsmellof rottingflesh.
I have knownpersonallya large numberof Semas whoare,orclaimto be, were-
leopards or were-tigers.The Headman of Chipoketamiis one; Chekiye,Chiefof
Aichi-Sagami, is another; Inaho, ChiefofMelahomi,a man ofgreatphysicalstrength
and endurance,is perhaps the most notorious. Gwovisheof Tsukohomiand his
daughterSukheliwereonlyknown to me by repute, Gwovishe's son Chekiyeof
Lukammimoreintimately. Kusheliof Litsammi,a secondwomanwere-leopard, has
her homeinsidethe frontier,and has a most unenviablereputation. The Sakhuto
above mentioneddied on July 19th, 1916, as a result of the leopard which was
occupied by his projected soul' having been shot by Sakhalu of Sakhalu on
June30thof that year. It was reportedto the writeron July4th that Sakhalu had
shota were-leopard, but it was thenbelievedto be identicalwitb one Khozhumoof
Kukishe,and it was expectedthat he would die when the news reachedhim, as
the death of the man concerneddoes not actually take place till he hears that his
leopard body has been killed. It was, however,Sakhuto who claimed the leopard
and whohad thehonourofdyingto provehisclaim. The son ofYemithiofLizotomi,
whoseleopard-catbodywas killed at Sagami,heard the newsas he was returning to
his village and expiredon the spot forno other reason-a curiousexample of the
powerof the Sema mindoverthe Sema body.
Both Inato of Lumitsamiand Inaho of Melahomirelatedto me independently
how,whentheywere goingup togetherfromPusumni to Lotesami,Inato managedto
persuade Inaho to show his tigerform. The latterlingeredfor a mroment behind,
and suddenlya hugetigerjumpedout on the path in frontof Inato witha roarand
an angrywavingof his tail. In a flashInato had raised his gun,but thetiger-Inaho
jumped in time to avoid the shot, and disappeared. Since this Inaho has had an
excellentexcusefortefusingto showhis tigerformto anyoneat all.
It is also told of Kusheli of Litsammithat she cured her husband of making
scepticaland impertinent to herlycanthropicperegrinations
references by appearirng
beforehim in leopard form. His name is Yemunga and he was returningfroma
businessdeal in Chatongbungwhen suddenlyhe saw a leopard blockingthe path.
Guessingit was his wifehe laughed at it and told it to go away. It wenton and
blockedthepatha littlefurther ahead. Thistimehe threatened to spearit,and it slid
ofTinto the jungle,onlyto reappearbehindhimunexpectedlywitha suddengrowl.
Thisfrightened him,and he ranhomeas fastas he could,theleopardpursuingtillnear
thevillage,whereit disappeared. Whenhe enteredhishousehis wifeat once started
to mockhim,askingwhyhe was perspiringso and whethe?r he had seen a leopard.
1 TheSemawordis aghongu, whichprimarily= "shadow,"butis usednormally in Sema
eschatology forthesoulofa deadperson.
J. H. HUTTON.-Leopard-Men in theNaga Hills. 47

The Sema were-tiger, or reputedwere-tiger, with whomI was best acquainted


was Chekiye,ChiefofLukammiand a.son ofthefamousChiefGwovisheof Tsiikoh6mi.
He would never admit to me that he was a lyeanthropist,but none of his Sema
acquaintancesever doubted but that his reputationwas well deserved.' He came
nearestto admittingto me that he was a were-tiger on the occasion of a tigerhunt
in whichI took part at Mokokchungon March29th, 1916. Ungma village ringed
some tigers-therewere certainlytwo full-grownanimals and two three-quarter-
growncubs present. The old tigerhimselfbroke out early in the beat, maulinga
man on his way; shortlyafterwhich Chekiyeturnedup,armed with a spear, but
no shield. The tigressbrokenear him and came withina fewfeetof him,bit and
mauled his next-doorneighbourand went in again. Chekiye,whenremonstrated
with for havingstood quietlyby and not havingspearedthe animal,said: " I did
not like to spear her as I thoughtshe was probablya friendof mine." Afterthe
beat he stated that the tigresskilled was a woman of Murromi,a transfrontier
village in unexploredcountrywhereall the populationare said to be were-tigers.
He also explainedthat the tigerin a beat was reallyfar morefrightened than even
the huntersthemselves,which is probably true enough, and shrewdlyobserved
that the use of the tail, whichis stiflenedup and out behindand swayedat the end
fromside to side, is to make the grass wave behindthe movingtiger,so that the
position of the tiger's body is mistaken and the aim disturbedaccordingly,an
observationwhichseemsto be at least trueof the resultof the wavingtail. It was
reportedthat he claimedin privateto be identicalwiththe tigerthat firstescaped,
but he would not admit this to me, and therewas indeed anotherand morelikely
candidateto this ratherdoubtfulhonour. This was an Ao named Imtong-lippaof
Changki. While this beat was goingon threemiles away, he was behavinglike a
lunatic in the house of one of the hospital servantsat Mokochung. During his
possessionhe identifiedhimselfwithone of the tigersbeinghuntedand stated that
one of themwas woundedand speared; that he himselfwas hit with a stick (the
Ao methodofbeatingentailedthethrowingofsticksand stonesand abuse incessantly
to makethetigercomeout). He laid a rolledmat to representa fenceand six times
leapt across it. He ate gingerand drank a whole bamboo " chunga" (about a
bucketful)of water,afterwhichhe said that he had escaped with two othertigers
aftercrossinga stream,and was hidingin a hole, but that one tigress,a trans-
frontier woman,had been spearedin the side (in pointof fact she was spearedin the
neck) and had been leftbehindand would die. (We shot the tigressin the end.)
He said therewerefourtigerssurrounded. Chekiyesaid six. Four actually were
seen,however,two grownand two half-or three-quarters grown. Theremayhave
been others, but it is not verylikely. Some sixteen cattle had been killedin two
days. This account I took down afterreturningfromthe beat, on the same day,
He was,however,oncecaughtoutin a pureand demonstrable
romanceby one ofmySema
interpreters.
48 J. H. HUTTON.-Leopard-Menin theNaga Hills.

froman eye-witnessof Imtong-lippa'sexhibition,whichwas seen and watched by


a largenumberof menbothreliable and otherwisein theiraccountsofit.
I have giventhesedetails as theyshow clearlythe Naga beliefson the subject.
Of courseamongthe Semas the idea of whatone mightdescribeas the projectability
of the soul is verypronounced. It is a commonthingfora sick personto ascribehis
sicknessto the absence of his soul fromhis body, and under such circumstances
he takes food and drinkand goes to the fieldor any otherplaces wherehe thinks
his soul has got leftbehindand summonsit, callingit, of course,by his own name.
When it has arrivedhe comes slowlyhome,bringingbis soul behindhim. A case
once came up beforeme for adjudicationin whichan old man named Nikiye,who
had been ill forsome time,wentto the fieldsto call his soul. It came,and he was
climbingslowlyback to the villageoccasionallycalling " Nikiye,Nikiye! " overhis
shoulderto makesurethat the truantsoul was following. Unfortunately a personal
enemyhad observedhim,and lay in wait in the bushby the path witha thickstick.
As theold man totteredby he sprangfromhis ambushwitha yell,and broughtdown
his stickwitha thudon the path immediatelybehindNikiye'sheels. The frightened
soul fledincontinently,and theold fellowhimselfdied of theloss of it two days later.
To avoid losingthe soul a Sema, who makesa temporaryshelterawayfromhome,
always burnsit on leavingit, lest his soul, havingtaken a fancyto it, shouldstray
back thereby itself.
To returnto lycanthropy in particular,the practicedescribed,as distinctfrom
the belief,seems particularlyassociated in Assam with the immigrationfromthe
North-West-thatis,fromthedirectionof Nepal and Thibet. The Changsprobably
have an admixtureof Singpho blood, and the Singphosare know-nto have come
fromthat direction; so, too, the Kacharis who,like the Changs,have a clan of tiger
men,and call it the Mosa-aroi,and the Mecheswho have a corresponding clan called
Masha-aroi,whichalso goes into mourningforthe death of a tiger-both came from
the northof the Brahmaputra. Amongthe Garos also the practiceis found,and
theytoo came fromthe same direction. On the otherhandtheKhasis, who seemto
belongto a different stock-perhaps to theKol-Mon-Annam race, and to have come
fromthe east-say they believe in the existenceof tigermen, but appear to have
absorbed the idea from the Garos, who are their neighbours,and not to have
possessedit as an indigenousidea,nor to indulgein, or believethat theyindulgein,
the practicethemselves. The Angami,whoalso does not practiselycanthropy, again
seemto have immigrated intotheNaga Hills fromthesouth-eastand to be intimately
connectedwiththe Bontoc and Igorot of Luzon in the Philippines. In other ways,
however,particularlyin language,the Sema is connectedwiththe Angami,though
on the otherhand thereare points of culturewhichkeep suggestinga connection
betweenthe Sema and the Garo. One of them is the use of Y-shaped posts to
celebratefeastsgivento the village, similarwooden posts beingused by the Garo,
thoughhe is at present entirelyisolated fromthe Sema, while the Kachari ruins
J. H. HUTTON.-Leopard-Menin the Naga Hills. 49

at Dimapux contain the same bifurcatedmonumentsin stone. Perhaps the ex-


planationis that the presentSema tribeis the resultof the amalgamationof a small
Angamielementwhichhas imposeditselfupon anotherstock, a processwhichthe
Sema tribe itself is still carryingon with regard to its neighboursto the east
at a veryrapid rate, a Sema chiefor adventurergraftinghimselfand a fewfollowers
on to a Sangtam or Yachungr-illage; thisin a generationor less becomesentirely
Sema in language and polity, thoughno doubt retainingits formerbeliefsand
certainlyretainingmuchof its formerceremonial.
The theorythatthisformof lycanthropy comesfroma l,orthernsourceis perhaps
supportedbythe fact that theformwhichthe belieftakes in Burma and Malay,as
well as in the plainsof India, seems to turnon an actual metamorphosis ofthe body.
Mr. Grant-Brown, writing in the Institute'sJournalin 1911 aboutthe TamaiRs, a tribe
of Chineseoriginin the Upper ChindwinValley,notesthat theytransform themselves
intotigersby makingwaterand thenrollingnakedon the earththeyhave wetted.
A nearerapproachto the Naga beliefappears to exist in Malay,buthere again
actual metamorphosis seemsto be essenatial to that formoflycanthropy. Mr. O'May,
writingin Folklorein 1910 (Vol. XXI, p. 371) saysthatin Burmaand Sumatraa quite
ordinaryman mayturninto a tigerin the evenaing withoutantyfuss,and he goes on
to describea Malay game of turninginto a civet cat, inrwhich a boy is actually
hypnotizedand caused to behave like a civet cat, becoming(as the Naga were-
leopard does) much exhausted when the trance is over. So, too, Skeat mentions
the case of one Haji 'Abda]lah caught naked in a tigertrap in KorinchiState in
Sumatra (Malay Magic, p. 160-163), whileMessrs.Skeat and Blagdennote that the
were-tigers of the Malay Peninsula (mosturlike the Nagas, here) cannot be shot in
theirmetamorphosed condition(Pagan Races oftheMalay Peninsula,p. 227).
Skeat also recordsthe inverse of the Naga case, in the process by which a
possessionof the human body by a tigerspiritis invokedto cast out anotherand
less powerfulpossessingspirit (Malay Magic, p. 436), and similarly(p. 455) the
inductionof a monkeyspiritinltoa girlwho,whilethus possessed,is capable of the
most remarkableclimbingfeats.
In all these cases, however,the practicediffers fromthat of the Nagas in that
eithermetamorphosis takes place, orit is the animalspiritwhichpossessesthe human
body,not the otherway round. For withthe Naga were-leopard the soul is merely
projectedinto the body of the animal,while rnometamorphosis of the human,body
takes place nor is any sort of hypnotismemployed-unless, indeed, it be self-
hypnotism, and involuntaryat that.
Sir James Frazer (G.B., Vol. XI, p. 196) givesinstancesfromAsia ofthe location
ofthe externalsoul in animalsforthe purposesofensuxingits safetyor forenhancing
-thepowerof the magician. Neitherof these two motivesappears to influencethe
Naga were-wolf in any way. It is recogu,izedon all hands that the practiceis a
,dangerousone, and it is said to be rapidlydecreasingowingto the increasednumber
VOL. L. E
50 J. H. HUTTON.-Leopard-Menin theNaga Hills.

ofgunsin the district,whichmake it stillmoredangerousthanait was. Lycanthropy


is notpractisedby wizards,as were-tigers are, as faras I know,invariablyordinary
men wbo do not claim to supernaturalpowersof any sort. The nearestparallels
seem to come fromAfrica,and Sir James Frazer mentionsseveral beliefsfrom
NigeriawhichresembletheNaga beliefprettyclosely. One otherpointmaybe added.
In some cases lycailthropyamong Nagas seems to be hereditary,or perhapsrather
one shouldsay that a tendeicy towardsit may be inherited,as inathe case of many
diseases; and indeedMr.Baring-Gould'describedlycan,thropy as a disease,associating
it in thisrespectwiththe maniaforcattle-maiming and witha morbiddesireto devour
humancorpses. Cases ofboth oftheseI have metwithinathe Naga Hills,the latter,
however,being regarded by the Nagas themselvesas symptomaticof extreme
insanity; whereasthe formeris, like lyc.anthropy, merelya vice whichis liable to be
verytroublesometo the neighboursofthosethat practiseit.2
Note on Ao Naga beliefas to a certainformof relationshipbetweenmen and
leopards.-One Longrizibbaof Yongimsenvillage was haunted by a leopard which
veryfrequently came at nightand slept outsidehis house close to that place by the
wall nearestwhichLongrizibbahimselfwas sleepinginside. Wlhenever the leopard
came, Longrizibbafellinto a deep sleep and could not be arousedby his wife,even
thoughhe had previouslysharpenedhis spear with a view to killingthe animal.
Then he took to sleepingon the platformat the back of his house,whenthe leopard
took to sleepingunderneath. On one occasion water was poured on to it, but
withoutdiscouragingit.
Afterthis and otherefforts to get rid of it, Longrizibbainducedthe leopardto
leave him alone by the sacrificeof a dog. This took place in 1919 when I was on
leave, and my attentionwas drawnto the case by Mr. Mills,SubdivisionalOfficer of
Mokokchung,one ofwhoseinterpreters saw the leopardoutsidethe house at night.
Apparentlysuch associationsof men with leopards are, accordingto the Ao
tribe,fairlyfrequent. The relationsbetweenthe man and the leopardare normally
quite friendlyand mutuallyharmlessuntilon an appointedday theyare broughtto
an end by the leopardsdevouringthe man.
If the hauntingis caused by some ceremonialfaulton the man's part,it can be
ended by a ceremonywhichincludesthe surrender of a cloth,a dao slingand a piece
of the man's own hair. If, however,the relationshipdates froma man's infancy
and has no cause that can be specified,he is unableto breakoffthe relationship.
A mountainwith twin-peaksis pointedout by Ao as a meetingplace of tiger-
men.

1 Book of Were-Wolvei.
2ProfessorElliot Smithtells me that Egyptianboys practiselycanthropy in association
withthe formsofthe commoncat. A bibliography on the subjectoflyeanthropy willbe found
at theendof Mr. McLennan'sarticlein the nintheditionof the Encycloicedia
Britannica,butit
relatesalmostentirelyto the Europeanraces.
J. H. HUTTON.-Leopard-Menin the Naga Hills. 51

The practiceof surrendering to the leoparda piece of the hauntedman's hair is


paralleledin the Changtribeby the practice,whena man loses himselfin the forest,
of cuttingoffa littlehair and puttingit in the forkof a tree forthe rock python
whichis believed to have caused him to lose himself. Afterthis the lost man is
able to findhis way home. Semas undersimilarconditionscut a piece offthe fringe
of theircloth instead of theirhair.

Colonel SHAKESPEAR,C.M.G., D.S.O., who was unaableto be presen,tat the


readingof this paper, sends the followingobservations:
AlthoughI have a fairlyextensiveknowledgeof the tribeslivingin the hills
of Mariipur,whichadjoin those dealt withby the author,and a betterknowledgeof
the Lushais livingfurther to the south,I have never come acrossthe type oflycan-
thropydescribedby Mr. Hutton. I have nevermet anyonewho admittedbeing,or
was knownto be, a man tiger. In all the tales I have heard fromnatives of those
hillsand also fromGurkhas,it has always been a case of metamorphosis.The idea
of soul projectionis, however,foundamongthe Lushais, I have describedit in The
Lushei Kuki Clans, pp. 111, 112. There the spiritp or Khawhringis an unlsought
ar,dgenerallyur,welcome guestin a woman'sbody,whenceit issues forthar,d takes
possessionof otherwomenand the possessionis infectiousand hereditary; in these
particularsthereis a resemblanceto the Sema formof lycanthropy. The idea that
the soul and bodycan be separatedwithoutdeathensuingat onceis commonto many
tribesin thesehills. Airongthe Aimol,the priest,aftera child'sbirth,summonsthe
soul to take possessionofits new dwelling,the child'sbody. Amongthe Lushais the
fatherand motherkeep quiet forseven days aftera child'sbirth,forfearofinjuring
the littleone's soul, whichis thoughtto hoverand perchlike a bird on theirbodies
and clothes. The Lushai also have thebeliefthata man maytemporarily lose his soul,
and thatthewanderermaybe called back bytheperformance oftheproperceremony.
The mentiona of the Y-shaped posts erectedto commemoratefeasts given to
ths villagersremindsme ofthe posts seen in Khawtlanng villages,as shownopposite
page 65, LusheiKuki Clans,whichare put up forthe same purpose.

E,-2