An animal who eats another of the same species. The term has been extended from its original use, which was confined to humans, to include all animals who feed on each other. From Canibales, the Spanish name for the Carib tribe of the West Indies who practised cannibalism.
Of particular note here is the widely reported tradition of endocannibalism practised in Betsileo, the highland province immediately to the south of Imerina:
The endocannibalism practised by the Betsileo thus guaranteed the community the continued presence and blessing of the ancestors --something assured in the 19th-century Merina fandroana or 'New Year' festival (which Molet claims replaced traditional endocannibalistic practices) when every person was obliged to sacrifice cattle (the number slaughtered reflecting the wealth and status of the deceased).
Sanday (1986: 59-101) provides several accounts of funerary endocannibalism in New Guinea among the Hua and Gimi who are reported to have eaten deceased relatives (among the Gimi males ate pork, females ate males) but these occur under subsistence and cultural regimes radically different to those we find among the pastoral nomads of the Eurasian steppe.
It might be proposed that Herodotus or Aristeas encountered the beliefs of a distant people that they misconstrued as funerary endocannibalism.