What is the Malay mancatcher in the short story "The Most Dangerous Game"?

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The Malay mancatcher is the name of a trap that Rainsford sets for General Zaroff in the story “The Most Dangerous Game.” It is made by laying a dead tree on a living one, with a trigger which when touched sends the dead tree crashing down, possibly hurting the person for whom the trap is intended. In the story, the falling tree fails to seriously hurt Zaroff even though he does touch the “protruding bough that is the trigger.” Being an adept hunter, Zaroff senses that he has set off a trap and moves away “with the agility of an ape,” but not fast enough to completely avoid the falling tree—it hits him in the shoulder. Afterward, he tauntingly says this to Rainsford: “Rainsford, if you are within sound of my voice, as I suppose you are, let me congratulate you. Not many men know how to make a Malay mancatcher. Luckily for me, I too have hunted in Malacca. You are proving interesting Mr. Rainsford. I am going now to have my wound dressed; it’s only a slight one. But I shall be back, I shall be back.”

The Malay mancatcher is the first real trap that Rainsford sets for Zaroff. Initially, he had “played the fox and cat of the fable.” This involved creating a trail for Zaroff to follow, then lying in hiding, like a cat, on the branches of a large tree. It seems like this initial maneuver wasn’t entirely successful—Rainsford got the feeling that Zaroff had pretended not to see him in the branches of the tree so as to “save him for another day’s sport.”

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The Malay mancatcher is a trap set by Rainsford that injures Zaroff. Throughout the story, Rainsford is forced to use his experiences and various skills as an experienced hunter to avoid being killed by Zaroff. 

The design of this particular trap is that the intended target, Zaroff, will trip the trigger and "the large dead tree, delicately adjusted to rest on the cut living one" will come crashing down and crush Zaroff. Unfortunately, the trap does not work to the extent that Rainsford desires. It only wounds Zaroff on the shoulder.

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