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medicine murderThe killing of a person to harvest their flesh so as to gain strength or personal force to excel in business, politics or other areas of human endeavour. Medicine murder has a ritualistic component in that the victim’s tissues—e.g., eyelids, lips, scrota, and labia—are taken whilst the victim is still alive, as their screams of pain are meant to make the medicine more powerful. The wounds are generally of such severity that the victim is expected to die. The body parts removed are mixed with herbs chosen by a traditional healer or herbalist, cooked, and either carried around by the perpetrator or rubbed on the perpetrator’s scarifications. Most cases have occurred in South Africa, the victims usually children or elders; the frequency with which it occurs is unknown.
Segen's Medical Dictionary. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All rights reserved.