Roy Mata

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A great chief of central Vanuatu, especially on the island of Efate and Retoka, who arrived around 1200 AD and set up a highly stratified society. His death was marked by an elaborate ritual that included the burying alive of one man and one woman from each of the clans under his influence. His grave, on Retoka, has been excavated and it was surrounded by evidence for the mass-sacrifice of 35 retainers, including 11 male-female pairs. Many bodies had ankle, wrist and neck ornaments of shells and pig tusks.