Random pet peeve

This may strike you as strange, but one of my biggest language-related pet peeves is the misuse of the word 'cannibalism'.

Cannibalism is the devouring of the flesh of one creature by another member of its same species.

Anthropophagy is the devouring of human flesh, by any creature. 

So a chicken that eats another chicken is a cannibal; but a chicken that eats a human is anthropophagus.

There, important English-language lesson of the day.  Use this knowledge well.


kaolin fire said...

Thank you for this. The misuse of cannibalism has always been a major annoyance to me as well. Don't think I'd known about anthropophagy. :)

The Magnetic Crow said...

I thank Gene Wolfe for keying me into the difference at a rather young age. XD