The Asmat tribe is the most well-known cannibalistic tribe in the world, and just thinking about them used to make people frightened.
In his expose book Savage Harvest, Carl Hoffman accuses this ancient tribe of assassinating and devouring Michael C. Rockefeller in 1961.
On the south side of the western section of New Guinea Island, there is a tribe known as the Asmat who live on small islands surrounded by mangrove trees and the sea. They are the most well-known cannibalistic tribe in the Indonesian state of Papua.
In the southwest of Irian Jaya, a low-lying swampy area covering around 9,652 square miles (25,000 square kilometers) is home to this coastal tribe.
The estimated 65,000 Asmat residents reside in villages with a maximum population of 2,000.
Their languages are part of the Asmat-Kamoro family of Papuan languages, which has more than 50,000 native speakers.
The Asmat tribe’s members think that wood is where they came from. Wood is therefore holy to them. They created beautiful wood carvings even in antiquity. Many of the engraved carvings created by the Asmat, who are regarded as the best stone-age woodcarvers, may be found in museums all over the world.
They are infamous for their long-standing cannibalism and headhunting customs in addition to their high caliber wood sculptures. Not only did the Asmat hunt for skulls, but they also revered them.
In order to stop evil spirits from entering or leaving the bodies of the deceased, the brain was removed from their skulls, and their eyes and nasal passages were blocked. The Asmat put modified and decorated skulls on display in a dignified location in their large homes.
Instead of a pillow, they would place human skulls under their heads. They would consume their animals’ brains directly from their half skulls, along with sago worms.
In addition to being headhunters, the Asmat also “hunted for names.” They thought that by eating a guy after they have slain him, they get his strength and transform into him.
Each person’s name was derived from a deceased person or an opponent who had been slain.
Sometimes a youngster wasn’t given a name until 10 years after its birth and only after the village it came from had decided to murder a guy from an adjacent enemy village.
They had to find out the victim’s name before bringing his skull back to their community. A person could only acquire a name in this manner.
Thankfully, Asmat’s reputation for evil is now history. To change this, the missionaries have put forth a lot of effort. Even the spoken language of the center Asmat is now written.