It is equally impossible to give a general survey of the purposes of sacrifice; not only are they too numerous but it is rare to find any but mixed forms; the scapegoat, for example, is also a messenger to the dead, and its flesh is eaten by the sacrificers.
With regard to the scapegoat, it must be noted that we also meet with a more concrete idea of expulsion of evil (see Demonology, Exorcism), which is present among the most primitive peoples, such as the Australians.
Three main forms of human sacrifice existed in this area: (I) the scapegoat; (2) the messenger; and (3) the expiation, but combinations were not infrequent.
The Iroquois sacrifice of the white dog bore in later times the character of a scapegoat festival; but it is doubtful how far this was an original feature.
Although a minor figure in the conspiracy, Tira-dentes was made the scapegoat of the thirtytwo men arrested and sent to Rio de Janeiro for trial, and posterity has made him the proto-martyr of republicanism in Brazil.