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Maasai Warriors Spear Man-Eating Lion in Vintage Film [VIDEO]

Old East Africa Postcards

See some dramatic footage of Maasai warriors killing a furious man-eating lion.

An unidentified narrator claims, "This is the only authentic film ever taken of the killing of a man eater, and I am the only white man who has ever accompanied the Maasai unharmed."

The veracity of that claim remains something of a mystery, as this snippet of film appears in more than one format, including a video excerpt from an old serial adventure movie, 1949, titled "Bomba the Jungle Boy."

The minute-long clip shown here appears to be from another film, a documentary perhaps. A second narrator speaks over the first, informing us that the lion hunt is a Maasai rite of passage.

He says, "The one who throws the first spear wears the lion's mane as a prized trophy." But there is more to a Maasai lion hunt than the wearing of the mane, as the Maasai Association website explains.

It is, or was, a cultural ritual unique to the Maasai, rich with symbolism and status.

Whatever the source of this film, it is nevertheless a dramatic and intense visual document of an actual Maasai lion hunt from a bygone era.

The narrator, supposedly translating for a Maasai warrior, says, "It was as if, with our growing strength and confidence, we wanted to show that we could even harness their strength."

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Maasai Warriors Spear Man-Eating Lion in Vintage Film [VIDEO]