Sunday, July 20, 2008


The sight of skulls hung from the beam of the ruai is a very rare. Only some long houses in remote places still practice this tradition. As the act of head hunting was eradicated many decades ago, those who still have skulls in their possession will just store them up in the sadau.

Due to the need of tourism for attracting visitors, these skulls were put on display. But then, these were on special arrangements with long houses which still has post modern era set up.

Have you ever ponder how is the head being prepared to become skull? Many ways could have been used for the preparation, and the version that was relate to me might differs from what the others did.

After the head have been chopped off, the hair is shaved and kept for decorating the sword of the victor. The skin, flesh and all were removed. Some said, the blood and grey matter of the brain was actually drank by the victorious party. By doing so, the soul of the dead man will not harm them.

Then the skull will be smoked over open flame for a long long period. Whatever flesh, muscle or skin that was left on the skull was removed. Finally only the skull and teeth are left.

Finally the individual skull is weaved by using rattan vine, covering and keeping the skull firmly inside. The whole bunch of skulls will then hung ,together with the rest of the stock by him, infront of his the ruai.


Secrets said...

What a totally fascinating account of headhunting. I wondered how they kept the skull and bottom jaw together.


monika said...

it,s really very nice good work
checkout my one said...

Hi, was wondering if you'd like to exchange links with me?
If yes, please leave your blog url as a comment at:
I'll link to you first, then when you have time link back k?
Thanks, Michael
BTW--I'm michaelwong38 on digg. If ever you want something dugg, just send me a shout anytime.