Macabre historico-scientific horror set in the Dutch West Indies in the 16th century.
Against an interesting social, political and economic background of the Dutch West Indies, a young scientist who finds himself working in this far-flung part of the empire is able to experiment with the creation of life, somewhat against the natural order of things. In the barrels in his laboratory he is able to create life from an individual spermatozoon, and to nurture it to maturity in a barrel in a period of three hundred days by dint of recreating conditions in utero, but at greatly accelerated schedule.
In a society based on slavery, there are no qualms to making use of the mannikins he creates, and he is required to improve his production methods as conflict nears. He is forced to confront the moral issues over his work following a quite extraordinary pitched battle-cum-orgy between his mannikins and female versions created by the enemy.