Howitt and Fison Papers


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of the words for I find itawfully hard. I really hope you can understand them.

[written in left side margin]My letter of14th August

In answer to yours of the 14th ofAugustI The name Kurnu she calls Goormoo. She says they are atribe of blacks Wilcanniaside of the Darling.II She seems quite in a fog asregards the tribe being dividedinto two moieties. Mukkunggurra& Kilpungurra. The formershe is inclined to think is a word from the "Queambar"talk. The Queambar are atribe who live about the BoganKilpungurra. She does not profess to know anything aboutthe word, or tribe, as it may be.

Last edit 5 months ago by ALourie




Adajura? Adjurura?Hunting or food rules as of game?In hunting for ubstance a man kills kangaroo he gives to the man on his right hand and head, tail liner part of hind leg, some fat and emu liver. The second to the right recieves the hind part of the backbone and the left shoulder. The man to his left recieves the right shoulder, and some ribs from the right side and the upper part of the left leg. His mother receives the ribs his brother of his fathers portion and his sisters receives the flank. The kangaroo is cooked before. J Kuhn.?

Karamurui? Eaten tribe 5-11 9

It is was forbidden to kill when hunting. When the men ? out hunting he who was must successful share the game he had secured with whose sho had been there ?so, but there was no rule laid down clearly certain individuals recieved a certain part. (a) In Bruebu?

Any the Mukjarahaiut?If a unnamed man killed a kangaroo and a ??? a ? The man ? Warauh here with me he should? first cook the game. Then he should eat some and divide the rest into there parts. I should like mine there. If I lived with my friends ?(there being no young men camp there) I should give my portion to father all if married I should send to ? my wife some of her parts? I should not to near her mother and her father mujni? come himself for some? to my mother should come here for some?. There has no rule for which part of kangaroo I should give.If I kill animal I should share it will all in the camp? Porcupine was divided each with all the family. Similar with all of the game, unless onlay a very small animal was caught but more than enough for myself and wife if I were ?. Berry? were forbidden to eat things such as the blue? kangaroo or the Paddy melon, animal they call???? of the young native companion. If the ??? there ? ? here support the fall??? berk? ??? will ever explains it to me??????

Last edit 7 months ago by Kurnai


Hunting of Food rules as Game??Karamurui Eaten tribe 5-11

In hunting for instance a man kills a kangaroo he gives to the man on his right hand the head, tail liner? part of the hind leg some fat and emu liver. The second to the right recieves the ???? part of the backbone and the left shoulder. The man when left recieves the right shoulder and some ribs from the side and the upper part of the left??? The ???? mother recieves the ribs; his brother recieves the father ??? and his sister recieve the flank. The kangaroo is cooked before being distrubuted. There were no animals in the adjuiturn ????? country which it was forbidden to kill when hunting. When the men ? out hunting he who was must successful? shared the game he had served with that who land? been ? so, but there was no rule laid down clearly? certain individuals recieved a certain part. (a) In Bimeba? Bineba?

Any the Mukjaranauut? ? ???Away a young man-women?If an married? man killed a kangaroo and a ???? a emu?? The man -? Waraah here with me he should first cook the game. Then he should cut some and divide the rest into there parts. I should like mine home???? If I lived with my friends parents?-(blieil berry???? no young men camp there). I should give my part to grandfather all??? If married I should send to my wife some to ??????? her parts. ? I should not go near her mother and her father might come himself for game. If my parents were there should take them some, to the women emu????? for some there was no rule which part of the kangaroo I should give. If I kill an emu I should share it with all in the camp. Porcupine was divided with men own family. Similarly with all of the game, unless only a very small animal was caught which would than enough for myself and wife. If I were married.???? Burp??was forbidden to eat thing such as the Dlue? kangaroo or the Pady melon has they call??? of the young native companion. If they ??????there rules ? here support????????? explains and to me??

Last edit 7 months ago by Kurnai




InfanticideMūkjara waintChildren belonged to their grand parents but his parentshas the care of them. If for instance a boy was bornand then a girl the father's parents might take themor the mother's parents and so on with another couple of children. Say then that another was born, if one of thegrandparents took it it would be kept. If not it waskilled, as being too many children. The grand parents hadto decide whether a child was to be kept alive or notIf not then either the grandfather or the father killedit, by striking it against the mother's knees. and thenknocked in the head. Then the child was roasted andeaten by their grandparents, their brothers and grandchildren -but its parents did not eat of it. Occasionally friendswere invited to the feast.The father could not order the child to be killed for if sothe grandparents would raise a mob against himand he would have to fight with them.

Maraurasspeaking(Wembaio)I found infanticide prevalent. The women said that theold men ordered it and it had to be done.Infanticide was indiscriminate both as to boys + girls.

TurribulHalfcaste children were killed by themidwife.Thos Petrie

Geawe-gal Infanticide was I hav ereaso [sic] to believe, permitted by theGeawe-gal tribe, thouh [sic] I never knew an instance. They alleged that whiletheir food was abund nt [sic] and their habits were simle [sic], it wasat [sic] least unmuncommon. They were very fond of their children, so far as I couldobserve.

Last edit 2 months ago by ALourie




In the Wotjoballuk tribe private quarrels were settled on the spot by the parties. If their anger was very hot , possibly in the camp,otherwise in the open near it. Each man would be armed withthe weaponcalled by them Li-au-will, the Liangal if the Woeworung, and they wouldfight till blood was drawn and their anger appeased, the friends standinground would interfere if it seemed likely that their man would be injured orkilled. After the combat if they still remained at varyance somewoman, such as the mother or sister of one of them would go to them andreason with and persuade them to be friends.

When some serious offence occurred and the offender belongedto some one of the other local divisions, the custom was to send amessenger (wirr'ugir), call on him to come forward and undergo punish-ment. In such a case if he were a man of consequence, or if the affaircaused much feeling among the people, all the totemites of each of themen assembled, under their respective Headmen at theplace agreed on.

Such a case ocurred in the Mukjarawaint tribe, and was reportedto me by a man whose brother and maternal grandfather, had forsome matter of personal offence, killed a man of the Black snake

Last edit 2 months ago by ALourie





In these tribes there appears to be a subsidiary or secondary clan [word crossed out] which divides the totems thus:

[Table 2 columns][Column headings]Mŭkolo - GnilpūrūBilyari - TirltāTŭrū - [Burkumia?]Wamba - KultapaX - KaruiX - YaranjeX - KurliX - KulthiX - BauanyalX - Wonjarū

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My informant was unable to explain this which appears most unusual and his blackfellows of this tribe could only tell him that every blackfellow is [either?] Mŭkolo or Gnilpūrū and that the latter is "[bein?] fellow" as the " by old men" long ago said.

Under this form of the two clans in [Iperi? or Iperū] tribes [crossed out - systemic descent] [crossed out - is [?]] marriage is as already described, that is between Mukuara and Kilpera and of any totem of the clan as among the Dieri. But in the following tribes of this group the law differs a little as to these totems. The clan [?] is from in [?] B.(5) the Milpulko, on the Darling River frontages from Wilcannia down to some fifty miles below Menindee, (6) The [Ni nalko?] from Wilcannia up to about 70 miles below Burke (7) The Gūerno thence up to Burke (8) the [Burum brūyah?] from Bourke up to the Barwan River - (9) the Badjeri extending up the Warrego River/Warrego from a point about 50 milenorth of the junction of the Warrego & Darling Rivers (10) Barūngi occupying the Waanaring district in the Paroo River and (11) the Kurlingali which is a back country tribe on the south side of the Darling River towards Cobar.

In these tribes the exogamic rule [crossed out - the marriage restriction relates] must only apply to the clan and all its totems, [crossed out - of the clans] but also to some of the totems of [?] of the clans [crossed out - with which marriage may take]. Thus while a man being Mukura-Tirlta may marry a woman being Kilpara-Kulthi [word crossed out] ([?]) (1) he may not marry a woman who is Kilpara-[?ileberi?]

Last edit about 1 month ago by Christine



It is well [crossed out - now] to notice that we have now -crossed out - be] found two forms of the two class system which are only distinguishable from each other by the different names of the two classes and the exception just noted as to totem marriage, which for the present may be disregarded. The area occupied by tribes of which the Dieri is the type is ------ miles by -------- miles; and that represented by the Wilya and other pther tribes is ------- miles by ------- miles.

On the border between these two [crossed out - organizations] great groups of tribes for which the term "nation" may be even applied the tribes meet as for instance the Yautruwunta and the Wilya although their languages differ so much as to have given [?] to [asigning?] which I heard among the Yantru wunta that the people to the South East were so stupid as to call (4) a snake "fire". This refered to the word tūrū which in the Yantruwunta language means "fire" and in the Wilya means "carpet snake".

[Left margin note]I heard an old Irishman tell a German that his people were void of intelligence, because they called a Coat a "Rock". "Very ignorant people". he said.

But it is quite clear that the organization in classes is the same under different names and the identity is recognized as I shall ahow later on by these tribes of either group which adjoin each other.

Proceeding now from the most Southern extension of the Mukurra & Kilpara classes in the Murray River, say at Wentworth, we find where the country of the Wembaio tribe of the River Murray ends in the great mallee scrub to the south that there then commences the country of and to the S tribe, named the Wotjoballuk who occupied the Wimmera and Richardson Rivers and [crossed out - their source?] the northern slopes of the Grampian Mountains. The local groups into which this tribe includes are given as [?].

The clan system of this tribe [crossed out - is extended] is of [crossed out - this] two classes with totems and it may be taken as representing tribes spread over Victoria [crossed out - from about [?]] as far East as a line drawn from Maryborough to Colac and next to at least as far as Rivolo Bay in South Australia [crossed out - boundary] - [word crossed out] to a line extending through [crossed out -from Mt Gambier] to the Murray River, (1)

[Left margin note](1) see K & K a to Mt Ganbier water also see Buanded [?] & Mr Smith

Last edit about 1 month ago by Christine




In the north west of Victoria, there was a large group of tribes whichI have called [applied the name of- crossed out] the Watjo [sic]-nation from the word which they use to distinguish thesmselves as "men" from other tribes. At the end of their great tribal meetings, when the people were about to depart to their homes, there was a [meeting - crossed out] assembly at the Jŭn, that is the men's council place, [at which - crossed out] where they exchanged articles which they had brought with them for that purpose.

The articles were as follows, sets of spears called [guiya - crossed out]guiyŭn-ba-jarram, or jagspear and reedspear; opossum skin rug called jirak-willi, or opossum skin; men's kilts, (bŭring-jŭn) made of the skin of the kangaroo rat goyi or padimelon (jalla-gŭr), armlets worn round the upper arm, (mirum-datjuk), wooden bowls (mitghigan) in fact all the implements, utensils ornaments and arms used by the Wotjo people.

All the great tribal meetings when the people were about to return to their respective localities there was a meeting at the Jŭn (※) (mens council place) (see p -) At this they exchanged articles that they had brought with them for the purpose.

Such for instance are the fighting - sets of spears called guiyŭn-ba-jaram, ie "jag spear and reed spear"; opossum skin rug - jūrak-ny - opossum = wille, [therefore?] wille-jūrak, mens kilts - bŭring-jŭn made of the skins of kangaroo rats - gòyi, or padymelon - jalla-gŭr - armlets - mūrŭm-dat-jŭk, wooden bowls chopped from baxteri limbs - mitchigan (a vessel) - in fact of all the implements, utensils and ornaments and arms of these aborigines.

[left hand margin]WotjoJupa jals[Mukjawarant - crossed out]

jŭn = mens kilts

Last edit about 2 months ago by ALourie





He was one of their great [Kū?Ki?] or medicine men but would not practice his art excepting on persons of note, such as Heads of totems or his personal -friends.

He was the son of the [famous?] Headman, who was still living during two [?] [?] in the Dieri country and who although too infirm to join in the ceremonies, gave advice to the [other?] the old men. He boasted that he had had command of the tribe before his son Jalina acquired it. He was believed to be proof to majic such as [crossed out 'the'] "striking with the bone".

Jalina [Piramurina?] had [crossed out 'thus'] suceeded to and in deed eclipsed his father; he was the head of the Kŭnaura totem and boasted of being the "tree of life" the "family of life", for this seed forms at times the principle source of vegetable food to these tribes. [crossed out 'The seed'] I have also heard Jalina spoken of as the head of the "[Mauyura?]" totem, that is of the [planet?] itself.

I observed that there were such Pinarus in the tribes to the north and north east part of the Dieri, such as the [Yaurorka?] and Yautruwunta who inhabited the country lying in and to the [western?] end of the Queensland border north and south of Coopers Creek.

[Left hand margin]A here reverse of p 4

When in the country of the Yerawaka and in the southern edge of Sturts Stoney Desert, the "[Murda -p nia?]" or great strong place of the natives, I camped for a night near one of the local groups of that tribe. A party of old men the Pinarus of the place came to see me, and asked me to go with them to see the [Jina - Pinaru?], the great -

[Underline](1) [?] clap - p- [mūkūchi Kŭkana?]

Last edit about 2 months ago by ALourie




Mission StationLake Tyers 29th?/3/04

A.W. Howitt Esq.

Dear Mr Howitt

On reading your letter justreceived in which you state that the origin of thetotem system is a moot point I would suggestthat it might have had its origin in the factthat the Aborigines attribute to various animalsattributes sections[?] being able to make orcreate. As the Bat Mukung[?] (or [?] togetherman and the Eagle & Crow being a sort ofsupreme deity, hence one would thinkthey were very apt to identify themselveswith the various animals, we[?] see thisis the power even now they attribute tothe Yelmire & Gleean in being able to curediseases. They seem to have had ananimal for the cure of every diseasefor headache they would use the teeth of theYelmire and in diseases of the limbs

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had - Ienbin [??]when he said it was to test him as a Gommera.

Questions[??] [??] noticeDid they [??] wives[??] [??] wives.Sharing food.Camping rulesBetrothal of girls.Widows.Wizards - Doctors[?Apollos?] dictumDreamsTulugal - ghostsThe starsThe sunThe moonmessage sticksGesture languageWilliam BensonDaualin = dirty waterNose pressing of infants.The [?comial - could it be comical?] of Gommeras

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Richard [crossed out - Hayes] Hays EsqCrown Land, AgentEden

Reserve [crossed out - between East] West side Reserve [??] 286 notified 22 Mch 1876taking [??] [?to or by?] river40 [?acres?]

Write letter - to Johnny Cartercare of Mr foster Wogongraat Tilba Tilbawife very sick - come up direct

Jabber to Mr BennettTurlingahSoon back in fortnight

I am - mūkka -corroboree song maker

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Mūkjarawaint[written at side of Mukjarawaint] Werpil = EaglehawkYūrn= Native CatBūnjil = StarWūrabil = Iguana

[written on side of page] Ya-tat-[??]Ngun un [??]

Half mile N of Dimboola - down riverto Pine Plain Lake past Albacutya Lakethen cross to Lake Coorong, thenceWarraknabeal creek to Warracknabealthence to Dimboola.wot-tchjo = manLai-ya-rūk = womanBobby's tribe - Wot-tchjo=(men + women) Ballaiūk

Gartchŭka = [?cratters?] cockatoo with red cheeks[??] Jallup - mussel(a) Grookit - no meaning

[Bobby - crossed out](b) Grorkit = Kilpara Kilpara = wartwŭt = Hot wind

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2Grookit can marry Makwara = {Gammatch gūrk{F. Black cockatoo

Bobby Father - Djallan = Deaf adder[Bobby] Mother - wartwŭt = deaf addergŭrŭk grorkit

Bobby - moiwuk-wartwŭt = Bobby wife - wūrant gŭrŭk = Djallan

[written on the side]:wartwut - hot windkrorkit


moiwŭk = carpet snake belongs to ?wart-wŭtmirndai = a snaketikomai = a dangerous snakemoiwil = large snake

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Chief names

(1) [Wūrant Bk Cockatoo - crossed out] Mgammutch(2) [Murndai crossed out] (3) jallan Death adder[(4) jallŭp krookil - crossed out] Krokitch K(4) gartchŭka - cockatoo(5) moiwillŭk - black snake(7)

1. manie [could be manies] - Krokegurk3. [jallan crossed out]- Krokegurk(4) - gammutchgulk(5) - gammutchgulk' - gammutchgulkgammutch man Krokegurkjallan [ditto] KrokegurkKrokitch [ditto] gammutchgurk jallan gurkgartchucka [ditto] [ditto] [ditto]moiwilluk - gammutchtgulk

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1 Wūrant - Bk cockatoo[Ngari crossed out] Ngiou = Bk duckgŭrnmil = green snakejering = bird

Krokitch = Kilpara = Kroki

Gammutch = Mūkwara = Kurnite

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meat. They found only ashes+ their fathers bones. TheBrams took them away cryingThe Brams asked thesetwo lads are you likeyour fathers temperand the two boys were tryingtheir teeth at a treeand finding that they wereevery bit like their fatherand too dangerous so theytold them to get ready"Sand [sic] here and you there"and the two Bramshit them with the waddy+ burned them up.

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gertuk =moupokewinne- ballebuk - jad-jira[??] it [??] [??] forkngappa ngangouraknap = grandfathernerurak = [??]bun-bun - tree creeperbapberembal - a [?bird?]don - a small bird like a miner[?then?] [??] hunting for possum [could be person]

card for mukbilly to wite wite Kalksilver [?walter?]

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gauwun [could be gauwur]Billum

What is the meaning of the sky wurawura - no meaningand of Murang beyond it [??] [??]what about the durie that has charge of this bird [not completely sure about this sentence]snoring gulkan gulkanDreams - only thoughtsWho are the Banju bunnuch Connoly givesfor them the bom dar? of the Wotjo


Mukjarawaintof Mukbilli

Wulermunt - BlackesnakeWūrabil – imaua (iguana?) Wīrembil - yūrn - native cat - B&w (black and white?) - native cat - jallanmoywil - bk headed (snake?)ngŭn nŭn ngŭnŭ(ol?) - bat yartāt gūrk - moreck (mopoke?)

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XM711_ICDMS_lowres Yuin



[7 or 2]Umbara (Black duck) who as thecorroboree song maker, and improvisatore of theCoast Murring had a well deserved reputation.

The tribe people who had collected to this Kuringalwere not only from the coast line but also from Braidwoodand Maneroo and numbered [crossed out - in all] men, womenand children in all 132. My contingent of Kurnaistarted from the Snowy River mouth to cross the wildBiduelli country but their guide lost his sight fromopthalmia when about halfway + they hadreturned. [Thus I was there alone - crossed out]leaving me as the only representative of the tribe.

After speaking with the old men for it [sic] little timeUmbara said that now I had arrived it wouldbe necessary to "frighten the women" - this being theset speech for the ceremony which always attendsthe arrival of a contingent.

The messenger who had conveyed my bullroarerhad some little distance to when he had it concealedunder a hollow log and swinging it round caused aloud roaring sound, at when the men startedfrom the council place towards the camp in singlefile and at a sharp run. Each man held a boomerang on the left and as they [crossed out - came] went rapidly[crossed out - forward] towards the camp, the boughs were systematicallystruck on the ground first on one side [crossed out - and] in frontand then in the other to the loud "Waugh" utteredat each step with great emphasis. This word ismost commonly shortened to Wah and maybe translated as "Halt, cease, finish". In thiscase it sees to be used to prevent the womenbecoming too excited about the boys. It is continually used as the final [??] in themagical part of the ceremonies. The moment thesound of the Bull roarer was heard withthe rapid Wah! wah! of the advancing [crossed out - line] ofmen, stomping in an advancing line among the trees, the women began to [??] aboutwill rolled up rugs and to sing the Bunan song [??]chant [??] [??] cause the tooth to beeasily knocked out of the [??] [??] [??]

[in left side margin]Iam-mukka [written next to line 2]

p. 5 [next to last line on page]

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hw0150 Notes on the Guyangal and Kurial



17two Kilpara totems, the Wild duck + theKangaroo, + two Mukwara totems, the Emu+ (say) the Snake, + we have the four classes aswe have them in the subdivisions of the QueenslandYungaru + Wutaru. Mr Stewart, however, whohas been for nearly 30 years in close inter-course with the Mt Gambier tribe, assuresus that the numerous totems used by thatpeople do not in any way restrict matri-monial selection. A Kunnite can take any Krokiegor, a Krokee any Kumibegor", hewrote in reply to a specific inquiry as towhether the totems affect the marriage regul-tions. *

The Kamilaroi totems are peculiar.At least, they have a peculiarity attacked to themwhich calls for special attention. Unlike theDarling totems, at first sight they appear toaffect "the main division by legalising to acertain limited extent marriage with thehalf sister by the father's side. This is marriagewithin the class [though not wit - crossed out] an utterabomination to all, or nearly all, the othertribes. It will be seen, however, that thetotems are not answerable for this. It is aninnovation + an overriding of their rules.

The Kamilaroi totems will be mosteasily understood by reverting to the twoprimary divisions, which have been shownto be Ipai- Kumbu + Muri-Kubi. In onegeneration - the order is reversed in the next -Ipai- Kumbu divides into Kangaroo, Opossum + IguanaMuri- Kubi divides into Emu, Bandicoot + Black snakeAnd, as each of the four class names takes allthe totems proper to the primary divisionto which it belongs, each of the four classes.

[written in left side margin]19

*Note No 1

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hw0404 Notes on Kurnai 150 pages



9Mukthang Come here- Nau-wŭn-ji come hereGive Wal-kimmiKnife- Worli-nŭtbiKŭla-melŭrt- scissors (cutting thing)Bŭr- Lean of meatBŭra- bullockai=beefTchewin- fatWŭk- trackNgutal- mineper Charley Alexander June 23th 1872

Billy WoodBeucruachan- WelwendŭkWánduin = Eugenia Symithii [Lilly Pilly]Tallak = sow thistleNgŭllŭk = one of the cruicifere Dŭrt-gŭrŭk = a large yellow fungus

Laua beri = Brown Snake[Jilung- crossed out]Gē-lŭng = Tiger SnakeBlack Snake =Thūrūng- any snakeAegotheles novce Hollandaice - Owlet nightjarÆ

A term of abuse- "pai-e-gwŭn" also "Dindin blānbin" applied to a Melbourne black who was speared

wattle gum = gūrmŭtmusell- = nāndiwŭn

[written upside down at bottom of page]Ask WilliamDid they eat parts of men

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1KurnaiTulaba's reminiscences

First whites in GippslandWhere the whites came into Gippsland hewas the size of Gilbert (12 years)Whitemen came into Gippsland first from Twofold Bay accompanied [with - crossed out] by T. B. black.They brought cattle with them. They attemptedto cross the Lakes Entrance but not succeedingcamped their cattle between Lake Bunya ([?Leën?] bŭke) and the sea. Then being guidedby Lakes Entrance blacks they went round the NorthArm and struck the Tambo River at [?Hewlets?]Failing to cross their cattle at Swan Reach theyreturned to T. Bay. By four bullocks [??] [??]- two of which the blacks afterward killed atSwan Reach - one at [?Beeba Beeba?] andthe fourth at the Tambo River below B.B - [??]

Tulaba says that when Blacks firsttasted beef of a bullock which the whitemenkilled at Lakes Entrance it made themsick as it had a different taste + smell tothe meat they had been used to eat.

First arrivals of BullockLong before the whiteman came to Gippslandthe Brajerak made a raid - Killed a numberof Kurnai and took away a number of women.Of these three or four made their way back and brought news of "Bullock" which they describedas "big dogs full of hard fat". The blacks couldnot make this out at all.

First white menBefore McMillan came into Gippslandwhite men had come from Buchanto the Junction of [?Tambam? - possibly Timbarra?]+ Tambo andthen returned.

Buchan is named from Bŭkan =the large bag in which things are [??]netted of string made of fibre from young Lightwood tree.The small bags are = Battūng.

Set fightsIn set fights the offender is called Waljurkand the injured person is called Nūnja nūngi

[written in left side margin]The Bad ground iscalled by the Nūletwía-wŭk - the Mukthanguse this word for it.

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Languages There are three languages in Gippsland(1) Thángūai which was spokenby the Krauatun at the Snowy River and to the Eastward.(2) Mukthang which was spoken bythe Braha and the [Bialaua - crossed out] Baiaka includingthe Dargo [?Mountains?](3) Nūlīt spoken by Brataūa andTatŭng.King Charley speaks Mukthang,Thanguai, Twofold Bay languageand Ngarego

Blue Mt ParrotBlue Mountain Parrot - Blēn mūrūk

E. Oblique = Laú-ŭn-gerŭt - the largeE. goniocalyx is calledBūnjil Binak

LanguageLook at that = Deála mundattiLook at that child = Deálla leet mundittiSit down here = Būnŭngali ditta

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15The Kŭrnai (Billy Macleod)AuroraThe aurora was called Wira. When they saw itthey were much alarmed and holding out their[?dead?] hands would say for instance "Jibbŭn a moko"that is I will burn in fire, if it did not send theAurora away.

ThunderIt is the thunder that splits trees - lightning isonly fire.

The sky The blue sky was called [?Blíne?] man da nŭrk.

The moon.When the Kurnai saw the moon red they believedthat it had then devoured a number of dead men ([?Curdegŭni Kŭrnai) in anothercountry; being supposed to have sneaked uponthese while they were busy in searching sow thistlesupon which they were supposed to [have fed - crossed out] feed.When the moon was thus seen the followingsong was sung.Yakwa Yakwa YakwarestTari-gwando - bringwana[?void?] bone excrementBēnbalai a place [bey-crossed out] west of Lindenow Flat.

This song is said to have been composedby the Ngūlūmbra Kŭrnai (ancient blacks(old time blacks).

Languages of the KŭrnaiBrabra = Mŭkthan (than = speech)Krauatŭn = Mŭk Krauatŭn than.Brataua = NūletBraiaka = NūletTatūng + Dargo = MŭkthanWommanda thang? [Wūmanda - written underneath] what is your language

Last edit 2 months ago by ALourie


39Australian Aborigines

Yanaki Station = NanjetWilsons Promontory = Yirŭk = Rocky point [?Strait?]Stockyard creek = Kong-gong = White headed ospreyTolo-wóra-worói = the Tarwin River andalso the name of the people living there.

BukkinThe Bukkin is called in the Nūlertlanguage Tallan or Tallandian = tongue choking, in the Mukthangit is called Ngarrang = strong = to Bukkinper [?Tommy Hoddinot?]

Jera-eilThe uninitiated youth is called Wotchiby the Kurnai

Old MorganOld Morgan was called Būnjil Gworŭn= thunder

AnimalsDakwŭn = Bk wallabyBlang = RingtailBrŭk = large black opossumBaiŭk = BushratMenŭk = BandicootTaiŭng = Rabbit Rat

The BukkinIs called by the Kurnai (Braba)Bret-bŭng (hand with) or Bŭrra-bŭrrak= flying

MukthangSit down here = Bannŭng-gulla-ditta

Last edit 2 months ago by ALourie


48The Kurnai per Tommy Hoddinot

Tommy speaks Nūlert language and Billy Wood speaksMŭkthang.The people at Yanaki - when the sand hills are were calledby the name of the place - Nanjet - he says this name has somethingto do with the "Badground".The extreme end of Wilsons promontory is called Yīrŭk whichmeans a steep rocky place - or precipice.Stockyard Creek (Foster) is called Kong-gong = White headed osprey.The Tarwin River was beyond the Country of the Kurnai- it is called as are the people - Toto-worra-worra.It was not the practice of the Kurnai to take people'sKidney fat; instead of killing them that way they did it byTallán-din (Noolert for Tongue-chokeing [sic]) or Tállan-dian (Mŭkthang for Tongue-choking) whichis the same as catching people with Barn.It was the Brajerak and the Melbourne Blacks who caught people with strings and tooktheir fat - this was called by the Kurnai - ngarang = cord or string.

As for food prohibitions the following:The Jeraeils might eat males if Dakwŭn = Bk Wallaby[ditto] [ditto] Blāng = Ringtail[ditto] [ditto] Baui = small scrub wallaby[ditto] [ditto] Baiŭk = Bush rat[ditto] [ditto] Menŭk = Bandicoot[ditto] [ditto] Taiŭng = Rabbit Rat[ditto] [ditto] Būnjil Wattŭn = Phascogale [?pencilata?][ditto] [ditto] Wrangŭn = Flying mouse[ditto] [ditto] Wattŭn = opossum[But they - crossed out]But they might not eat either male or female of the large black opossum called Brŭk.Hoddinot says that on the mainland opposite to Rabbit Islandabout a mile from the shore - not on high land - there is anentrance to a cave which goes very far in - how far hedoes not know. He had been in to it when a boy withMorgan, Darby + Warrigal Jim. It is said that it wasthe abode of Baakan.

[written in left side margin]see p. 90

Last edit about 2 months ago by ALourie


59Australian Aborigines

Maneroo BlacksBurialWhen a burial was concluded they moved campacross some river.

StormsKilling a crow brought stormy weather.

Kurnai languageThe Krauatun [Tatung, and – crossed out] speak Mŭkthang;the Braiaka, Brataŭa and Tatunga speakNūlart. per King CharleyPūtchi-māl = come here!The Flag root is dūrūk and the cabbage tree istabbár – per King Charley

Borun = jagspear, waal or ganŭt = reed spearMurriwŭn = throwing stick, Bamarŭk = shield spearTŭrnmŭng = waddy, spear, [shield? – written above spear], Tundiwŭng = [diagram]Kŭnnin = [diagram], Kallŭk = [diagram]per Big Joe

Tūmŭng = mountain messmateRiver white gum at B’dale = gūra-binnakor daubal-daubal (white) binnakIronbark = Yírik

Billy Woods’ Nakŭn was Bunjil Dauangŭnand Bunjil Barn was his elder Brother

Blápan-wŭrt-mokogo all of us there

Let us all go there.Ngarūgal mūndū bŭrrang mokocrow there flying thereThere is a crow flying

[written along right side margin at bottom of page]mundu [?indintē?]the bird moko [?indintē?]the place

Last edit 2 months ago by ALourie


12[?Laras ??] 8 [?Mel/Gory?]

Colin HoodWimbaiKaniwara belongs [?Mukiran?]LyrebirdNawitcheru = Kilparakangaroo ratNamba = [?bullfish?]

Waribruk[diagram] made withnanduwung = [?musselsheet?][diagram]

Yabnurn when sick sings the Yalmen song

Thruwungunda clean your teethngourabindi the open sea


Yalmerai - Billy the Bull Emily SaleGwanning eagle hawk


Tulaba ThuringMary - Thuring

Thuring - Dad Alancentipede (Bega)ngurrung- ngurrung


Last edit 10 months ago by ALourie

hw0402 Howitt to Miss Benson 14/08/1899



Draft letter to Miss Benson 14/8/07

Since I posted my letter to you on the 7th inst. Ihave had a matter in my mind which I hopewill consider my my justification in troubling you again.It arose out of the Ipatha woman's statementthat the Moorawari tribe extended down theRiver to Bourke.[A statement was made - crossed out] An account has been published some time back[that the - crossed out] about a tribe which [extended from - crossed out] is called Kurnuand which is said to extend down the Darling for 80 milesbelow Bourke. [Does Ipatha- crossed out](1) Does Ipatha know of that tribe - and is [the -crossed out]Kurnu the name of it?(2) The class-names given are said to be the following.Muk Kungurra Murruri Kilpurgurra IbburiKubburi NgumburiDoes Ipatha know of these names?

(3) It is said that the man Mukkungurra-Murrurican marry the woman Ibbundyerra (the sister of [Ibburi - crossed out] the man Kilpungurra- Ibburi - alsothe woman Kilpungurra-ngummun dyerra, [+c - crossed out][Does Ipatha know about these - crossed out][he also can marry the woman- crossed out]Does Ipatha know these names + the above marriages?(4) Can she tell me how many of the Kurnu tribeare now living and where they live?(5) If she does not know the Kurnu tribe then which tribe lived below Bourke? and did it have the above clannames - or Ipai-Kumbo Murri-Kubbi?

[written in left side margin]I am slowly working out the material for a communicationto one of the [American - crossed out] Anthropological Societies and I shallhave to thank you for important contributions

Last edit 2 months ago by ALourie

hw0406 Notes on Eucalypt names from Gippsland Aboriginal people



Names of the Eucalypts given to them by the Gippsland Aborigines---------------------------------------------------------------------------Kurnai names for the Eucalyptsin the Mŭk thāng Dialect (2) ------------------------------------------------------------E. Amygdalina - [tick] ChūnchŭkaAmygdalina - (b) Katalalak or Yertchukamygdalina - (c)-------------------------------- wang-ngara (2)Botryoides - [tick] BinakCapitellata - [tick] [crossed out Dūmŭng Gūyŭn-gūyŭn] [dūmŭng?]Eugenioides - [tick] [crossed out Dūmŭng] yangūraGlobulus - [tick] [crossed out Binak] (Balūk) - wang njara (2)([Brataua?])Goniocalyx - [tick] BálūkGunii - [tick] Gūra binak Hemiphloia - [tick] Dēn or Dérn [word crossed out]Leucoxylon - [tick] Yirik or BwŭrawiMacrorhyncha - [tick] [Káta katak?] or [(Yūróka)] (3) [Thang quai?]Melliodora - [tick] DárganObliqua - [tick] Káta katakOdorata - [tick] DarganPauciflora - [tick] Bŭndagra3 -Piperita - [tick] YángūraPolyanthema - [tick] Den (or Dern)10-Pulverulenta - Bindŭrk [(word crossed out)]

[On LHS Bindŭrk (Mukthang)

Sieberiana - YauŭtStellulata - YīmbitStuartiana - Bŭt BŭtTereticornis - Yūro5- Viminalis - Binak

11- [four lines bracketed crossed out] wang-ngara

[Line crosssed out]

Tristania laurina - Gūyŭr

[circle with dot] Mŭkthang (i.e. Excellent speech) was spoken by the [Brabolenj? or Brabolung Kurnai whoinhabited the country [upon?] Mitchell, Nicholson Tambo River; [near? or the?] Kruatun Kurnai camp[?] [try?] [Dr?]. camp & spoke the [word crossed out] Thang-quai or " broad speech"; the[Brayakalung?] Kurnai inhabited the south of the Avon, Macalister, Thompson [fl?] River & spoke the Muk Thang or variations of it with Bratàua [two words crossed out]--------2------and Tatung Kurnai who inhabited the country between lakesand the sea in South gippslandsea [Nulit?] spoke the Nūlit

[writing on LHS]

(2) E amygdalina is [Erica?] [rest of line crossed out]The bark of the tree is extremely tough and can be stripped up the bole in long stripes. That of E globulus

is not so tough but hangs at times when falling off from the limbs & [trunk?] in long strings from which [perhaps?] the South Gippsland black called it Wang ngara. [rest of line crossed out]

But wanj = bark and ngara = string or tough [as?] [?] [ngarang]] = sinew the application of such a term is much [more?] [appropriate?] E amygladina [(4)?] than to E globulus.

Last edit about 1 month ago by ALourie

hw0421 Notes by Howitt on the Wotjobaluk



1The Wot- jo-ballŭk - tribeThis tribe inhabited a part of country lying between the Wimmera and Richardson Rivers.The tribal name is taken from Wotjo = man and ballŭk = people. It is also called Gūli bullaiak. (Guli = man).The boundaries are as follows : - starting from about a mile north of Dimboola on the eastern bank of the Wimmera River following that river to Lake Hindmarsh thence by the river to Lake Albacutya, thence by the river to its termination at the Pine Plains Lake.Thence eastward to Lake Coorong; thence by the Warracknabeal creek to Warracknabeal;thence west to the starting point.

The Wotjo ballŭk are divided into a number of local divisions of which the followingare the principal:

1. The Gromillŭk - Lake Hindmarsh2. The Yakkil - ballŭk - Lake Albacutya3. The Kreitch ballŭk - Dimboola4. The Weitch wŭndaiŭk - Warracknabeal5. The Yárik-killŭk - Lake CoorongA man of one of these places eg Gromillŭk would be called Gromillŭk or Gromillŭk Wotjo in describing himand so on with the others. The totem names which I shall now speak of are scattered all over the country in the different Local groups.

Note: the people who lived at Lake Hindmarsh were Kromillŭk - Dimboola and Horshamwere Jūraballŭk, Jŭngping were Yaram [balluk - crossed out] biŭk, at Longerong were Jó-in ballŭk, at Murtoa + Warranoke were Waitchwŭndaioke,and at Waracknabeal were Yarambiŭk, at Ledcourt [were - crosesd out] and Mŭkpilly were Wotojoballaiuk.Old Bob says that Johnny Connolly is of Ledcourt and is a Watagoli- one of the Wotjoballaiuk . That his mother was a black woman but that his father made him a halfcaste.

[written in left side margin]Wenjen = lie on itsMarong = pinetreeGitch = has beensee the legend of thepine tree that reached to the sky p.

The Doen bauraket (doen = planes) lived to the westThe Balŭk mernén (mernen = sandhills / [??] it"sand hill fellows"to the northwards: the [Wen-crossed out] Wengen marongitch to theEast and the Jūroballŭk to the south Jūro = plain

Last edit 6 months ago by ALourie


2Class DivisionsWūrip - Small bird with top knot Morokŭt - Red Parrot (Long?)(1) Wart wŭt - claims - Moiwŭk - carpet snakeHot wind Mindai - a snake brown snaketikomai - a poisonous snake Mitjen - moonNgaui-sun

Got-jŭn - Native CompanionBoo [k written over final o in pencil]- Bandicoot(2) Gart chŭka - A Kauwŭr - Emu the smaller crested claim JJálŭp - mussellwhite cockatoo Ngŭrau - turkey Jŭlwil - musk duck Bitjangŭr - Mountain duckNgárūwara - magpie goose[yūrn - native cat - crossed out]Monya = a yam

[(3) -crossed out] 4 Ngaui-nga-gŭllisun - belonging to gartchŭka B - the larger crested(a) white cockatooand gŭr -white tree grub(b) jar-ŭk - yam

yūrn - Native Cat - [see above-crossed out] ?Berejŭl - Tiger cat(1) Jallan claim gŭnowara - swanDeaf adder Jinap - sulphur crested cockatooWaa- crowWilkin - Wilkri - native dog

(2) Dŭri mŭrŭk claim wūrant - black cockatooBlack cockatoo Joyo - Iguana small sizeNgarnŭr - Iguana larger sizeNgŭri - Black DuckGŭmmill - green snakeBernera - Teal duckJerong - A Bird[Moiwillŭk - Black snake - crossed out]

Proporon - chough? chough?Bat-jan-ngŭl claim Barnga - grey heronPelican Karimbal - a wader with long legs and spotted breastJartjŭk - White gullBŭrtita - White bellied cormorantBorŭp - Smaller black cormorantWangwŭng - Larger black cormorantNgari - Bull oakBiyal-Red gum[Wan yip - Fire- crossed out]

Note : When my informant was [coming - crossed out] in the Tati-tati Tatati tribe at the Murray he was told that being Krokitch he was also Kilpara and the Gamutch was Mukwara. He was not able to tell me to which of the Tatati totems his own (wurtwŭt) agreed.

[written in left side margin]KrokitchKilpara

gamŭtch[gŭmatch - crossed out](makwara)

[written on right side of page]Būnjil = a starngi-arranTurkeygore - KangarooBŭrra Red Kangaroo

[written in pencil below (1) wart wŭt]Leirukdeaf adder

[written in pencil below (2) Gartchŭka3 (3) munya

[written in pencil above (2) Dŭrimŭrŭk]Totem

[written in pencil below (2) Dŭrimŭrŭk][??] totem?Jallan?

Last edit 9 months ago by ALourie


38Folk lore 4and his dog and at last saw him goto the tree and drink. Then they said "May the fork of the tree close up over our grandfather"(Winni ballebŭk jadt jira ngappa ngaugourak)let it close up fork grandfather ngourak our

The tree closed up and shut up old Gertŭkwith his dog in the hole. Then the Brambramgalwent away.

Soon after the tree creeper (bīn-bīn) with twofriends came that way and went running upround the trees. Hearing a voice somewherethey said "where are you"- "Here I am"replied Gertŭk - "shut up in the tree".The Binbin took his tomahawk and began tobeat the tree to find out where to cut. "Don't cut there said Gertŭk - "my forehead is there" - don'tcut there - it is where the top of my head is" and so on until Binbin got cross and cut a hole - it was just where Gertuk's breastwas and he cut him badly. He pulledhim out and laid him on the ground;he was bleeding and nearly dead but hisdog came and licked his wound andmade him well. The mark on the Morepoke'sbreast is where the wound was.

Then Gerlŭk being very angry got aKangaroo skin bag and went about collectingwhirlwinds until he had it full. Thenhe tried it and finding it was strong enoughto blow the trees out of the ground went insearch of [G- crossed out] the Brambramgal when hefound them near Mūkbilly. He openedhis bag and let out the whirlwind.

The older Brambramgal caught hold

Last edit 9 months ago by ALourie
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