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The Horrors of Dahomey.

A letter from Paris, giving details of the adventures of JJr Bayol, the Governor of Kotonou, who was imprisoned, bj the King of Dahomey, appears m the Vossiscne Zeitung. Dr Bayol himself was not ill-treated, but was forced to witness the horrible executions, and was closely watched night and day by oneof the most important chiefs. He was forced to be present at the execution of his secretary and his interpreter, and was a spectator of the sacrifice of, at one time, eighty-four human beings, and at another oi forty-two. The victims were bound, multilated m a horrible manner, and then, still alive, hung up by the heels. Then their bodies .were opened with large round knives, and the intestines taken out, after which the corpses were thrown into a "place of skulls," where m. forty-eight hours they were reduced by birds of prey to skeletons. Dr Bayol was every time compelled to view each corpse, while the executioners carefully turned the heads of their victims towards him. Upon one occasion he desired to buy off some negroes whom he recognised as protiges from Porto Novo, but the King angrily refused to allow it. Every day his dusky Majesty danced before the doctor, executing steps and i jumps which would have been highly entertaining under other circumstances. \ At'these times the King wore sandals, and a sort of Grecian cap on his head, and six Amazons danced with him, The Amazons Dr Bayol describes as very fiends. One day the doctor witnessed a spectacle which he will never forget. At a sign from the King 500 Amazons rushed upon a living ox, and tore it into pieces m a few seconds ; then each with a piece of raw flesh m their moufch, marched off signingl, while five of their number held the skin and head of their victim aloft m triumph. In festal garments they witnessed from the roofs of the neighboring huta the human sacrifices of the next day, and laughed heartily. They always appear perfectly resigned, and go quietly to death when their turn comes.

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Bibliographic details

The Horrors of Dahomey., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2476, 28 July 1890

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The Horrors of Dahomey. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2476, 28 July 1890