We often call the denizens of forests as wild beasts and describe them as cruel and blood-thirsty. Such a description of these creatures is an insult to them. No animal is more violent, more blood-thirsty and more artistically crafty and cruel than MAN. That is the reason that our world is brimming with armaments which include most destructive weapons to annihilate him. Lesser weapons are unable to control his violet propensities. The literature of man-eating lions and other carnivorous animals which forms the core of this book is not much large. The author is an accomplished big game hunter and the present volume is his outstanding contribution to this genre of books. It not only deals with carnivorous animals in their capacity as man-eaters but also gives an account of the distribution, habits and character of these wild beasts as well as of the methods of hunting them. Thus his field of study embraces the man-eaters of all countries and climes of the world. Wild beasts do not generally go about seeking whom they might devour. The carnivora have no special taste for human flesh which is perhaps as unpleasant and repulsive to most of them as the fresh of the carnivora is to human beings. But when a carnivorous animal takes to man eating, it develops an insatiable desire for human flesh which may be imparted to its descendants. They frequently enter huts and tents and far-flung hamlets in search of human prey. There are countless species of man-eaters including man himself and the book also gives a breath-taking account of cannibalism. That the Maoris of New Zealand were cannibals came to light in 1774 when ten white men belonging to the ship Adventure were surprised on shore, put to death, cooked and eaten by them. And then there is that blood curdling story of the starving crew there is that blood curdling story of the starving crew of the ship, Peggy which set sail for New York on 29-10-1765. She encountered bad weather and also started leaking. It could make little way. The provisions were exhausted so much so that on 13-1-1766 after eating the cat of the ship, the crew became desperately hungry and cast lots which of them should perish for the sustenance of the rest. The lot had fallen on the sole negro, the only cargo left on the ship. The unfortunate negro was dragged to the steerage and shot. A large fire was made and the body was cut up and cooked. Campbell, the mildshipman of Peggy was so ravenous that he seized and ate raw a portion of the Negros liver. The book contains an unending catalogue of man-eaters including the lion, the tiger, the leopard, the jaguars, the pumas, the hyenas, the wolves, the bears, the crocodiles, the alligators, the serpents, the sharks and several others. An unrivalled book on man-eaters, written by one of the greatest big game hunters of all times, it should be the proud possession not only of hunters, sportsmen and adventure seekers of the world but also of all homes and of all libraries in India and abroad.
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