Howitt and Fison Papers

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XM237_ICDMS_lowres A W Howitt Australian Group Relationships (paper)

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local groups which are exogamous and intermarrying under a definitelocal arrangement (op.cit.p.p. 76, 272).The former diagram, with certain provisos will serve to illustratethe marriage rite and relationship terms of the Kurnai, as well asthose of the Dieri.I assume that the men 1 and 2 are brothers belonging to a certain local group, which may be called "x", and that the women 5 and 6are sisters, belonging to another local group "y". The two groups areexogamous and intermarry. I further assume that, as was a common prac-tice with the Kurnai, the two men 1 and 2 agreed to elope at the same time with the women 5 and 6, having done so, 1 became thehusband of 5 and 2 of 6, 9 being the son of 1 and 5, and 11 of 2 and 6.There is individual marriage in the Kurnai tribe, and 1 is theindividual husband (bra) of 5, yet 2 the brother of 1 is also the bra of 5, although there are no marital relations between them. Theman 2 is the (f), sister's husband of 5. Similarly it may be seen thatthe term maian (wife), includes also "wife's sister" and "(m), broth-er's wife".The parental term mungan (father) is applied by 9 to 1, the individualhusband of his mother 5, but it is also applied by him to 2 his fath-er's brother, between whom and 5 there are no actual marital relations.Moreover it also includes "mother's sister's husband", that is theman 2.The term yukan (mother) is applied by 9 to his mother 5, andalso to her sister 6, the titular wife of his father.The filial term "lit" (child), is applied by 1 to 9, by 2 histitular father, by 5 his actual mother, by 6 his titular mother,and they follow correctly the premises of the parental terms.The term thundung (elder brother), is taken as an example ofall the fraternal terms. Assuming that the man 1 is the elder,then 9 is the elder brother of 22, they having the same fathers,the men [..] and [..], and also because 5 and 6 are their mothers, ownand titular.I think that anyone who approaches this subject with an openmind and free from bias, will agree with me that the marital,parental, filial and fraternal terms of relationship of the Dieridefine the conditions of pirrauru marriage. These terms are quite

Last edit 7 months ago by Margaret T. Newman
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13used by the tribes of the Eastern half of Australia, point to thisconclusion. The same argument may be reasonably extended to the whole of the continent.

The question then suggests itself, what may have been the origin of the pirrauru marriage of the Dieri? We find a starting point, inthis inquiry, in the two exogamous classes, whose action prevents the marriage of brother and sister. The next step onwards is their division into four sub-classes, thereby possibly preventing the marriage of parent with child, followed, in the northern central tribes, by a further division into eight sub-classes.

It is an accepted fact, that the numerous restrictions of marriage, in the Australian tribes, have been intentionally made, to prevent the union of those who are, considered to be, "too near flesh". I must point out here that there is no evidence whatever that the Australian tribes have any knowledge of any injurious effect produced by interbreeding.

If we reverse the method, and trace back the successive changes we shall find that the division into eight sub-classes is still proce-ding [sic] in the southern Arunta. There are apparently only four sub-classes, Panunga, Bulthara, Purula, and Kumara, but further inquiry reveals the fact that, for instance, a Panunga man is not allowed to marry any and every Purulawoman. The latter are all divided into two groups, the members of one of whom he may marry, whereas the others are strictly forbidden to him (1). The divisions are there, but have not yet [become - crossed out] received names.

We may concieve [that - crossed out] the original segmentation to have been brought about, not by revolutionary, but evolutionary means, within the Undivided Commune.

I picture the two segements as having group-marriage, controlled by a prohibition of brother anh [sic] sister marriage, and the unsegmented whole with group-marriage, including that of brother and sister.

Looking backwards into the unknown depths of time, farbeyond the conditions just postualted, we may suspect a period of general promiscuity between the sexes, and not that "sanctity of individual marriage", which if I am not in error, is Mr Lang’s theory.

(1). Messrs Spencer and Gillen. The Northern Tribes. p97.

Last edit 6 months ago by ALourie

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and descent in the female line.The Wurunjeri was one of several tribesin south central Victoria, which had a two classorganization with one totem. It was also organizedon locality, and had individual marriage anddescent in the male line.The Kaiabara tribe was at the Bunya BunyaMountains in Queensland and represented alarge aggregate of tribes extending from the coastfor somemiles. The organization was intwo classes, segmented into four subclasses, withtotems. There was individual marriageand descent in the male line.The Arunta tribe is the immediate northernneighbor of the Urabunna who are on the northernside of Lake Eyre while the Dieri are at the East.The Arunta are organized in four subclasseswith totems which do not [...late?] marriage and descent inthe male line.The [Binbura?] tribe is again in [eight?] subclassesand has [eight?] subclasses with individual marriageand male descent.Although there are four classes in the southernpart of the Arunta tribe there are eight in the northern as in all the tribes which occupy thecountry [......] of the [Burbuya?]The Narrinyeri are situated on the coastat the mouth of the Murray River.This tribe has no class names but has[........] totems and is organised in localclass. There is individual marriage and descentin the male line.

Last edit 3 months ago by ALourie
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The Yuin are a coast tribe in SouthernNew South Wales. They have no classes orsubclasses but have totems whichwith locality [replicate?] individual marriage with maledescent.The Kurnai tribe inhabited almost the whole ofGippsland and was organised in localexogamous, intermarrying groups.There was individual marriage brought aboutby a system of elopement with descentcounted in the male line.The Chepara were a coast tribe in SouthernQueensland. There was no organisation in classesor sub-classes and there were no totems.The tribe was divided into local clans with maledescent and individual marriage.These tribes fairly represents those described byMessrs Spencer and Gillen, and by me is[.....] some three fourthsof the [Eastern?] half of Australia.Considering them as a whole we see that the mostbackward standing are the Dieri and [kindred?] tribewith the most advanced, in one direction of social [.......]are the northern tribes with eight subclasses and descent[reckoned?] in the male line. In another direction the tribeshave advanced from an organization like that of the Dieri[... .... .... .. .. .... .. ... ..... .... ..... ..... .....]have individual and not group marriage.Such coast tribes as the Kurnai who have become altogetherorganised on locality with male descent.The progressive rate of advance has not been thesame so that no two tribes stand at identicallythe same distance from the starting point. It is [therefore?] necessaryto take into [....] all the factors in the problem and [... ......] to saythat any one tribe is [.......] because its [ceremonies?]or its [social? ..... .. .......], or beliefs is anyother ["....."] have [remarkably?] more [......] featuresto this paper & only consider the [distance?] from groupmarriage to individual marriage.

Last edit 2 months ago by ALourie

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of the opposite classes, and might lawfully marry, if they were of the noa groups. A diagram will show how this works.

Diagram No 3.

(I) Materi-emu kamari (4). f. Kararu-cormorant

(2) .f.Materi-emu kami (5) .f.Kararu-cormorant

(3) .m.Matei-emu noa (6) .f.Kararu-cormorant

i, 2, and 3 are mother, daughter and grand son. No I and 4 are in the relation of kamari, that is brither's wife Their children are kami-mara and therefore forbidden to marry. Were they of the Ngabana tribe they would, under the rule of that tribe, be nupa to each other, and marriageble. Nupa is the equivalent of the Dieri [?]. The alteration of the relation of kamari to kami, by the kindred is merely a reversion to the older rule.

In order to show the noa rule in practice I refer totable A p.. As I there said the men 1.2.3. on the first line in A, have obtained noa wives by the exchange of sisters. The several couples I/4, 2/5, 3[?] have been born into the noa relation with eachother, and have become specialised by betrothal. All the children of these couples are kami-mara, and have therefore to obtain husbands and wives from other groups which are noa-mara to them, and to [?] the men of I0, II I2 belong, as the husbands of the sisters of the former. It is the children of the couples 7/I0, 8/II, 9/I2, who are noa-mara to each other.

The rule deduced from diagrams, compiled by tracing back the descents in a number of Dieri families, may be stated as follows, and can be traced out in tabe I.A.

Last edit 9 months ago by Passenger

tip70-10-5-1 Fison to Frazer 29/8/01

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EssendonMelbourneVictoria.29 Aug. '01

[written in top left corner]I mostsincerely trust that Pagenstecherwill have no difficutly with your eye-trouble, + thatMrs Frazer will be benefitted by thebaths.

My dear Dr Frazer,It is always a great delight to me to receive a letter from you,+ yours of July 14 has given muchpleasure to both myself + Howitt, towhom I showed it. My wife + I wentto his house yesterday afternoon, + stayed the night there, so that I might have an opportunity of going over with himwhat we may call his Mura murachapter. He is going to send you aduplicate of the MS, so I need saynothing more about it here than thatit shows conclusively that theMura mura were "dream time" blackfellows.It is not clear that they were actuallythe Dieri ancestors, for it is said thatthey found a number of [crossed out - partially] undevelopedhuman beings, whom they carved into shape,fashioning their limbs +c, + that these

Last edit about 2 months ago by ALourie

hw0326 Gason to Howitt 1/9/1882

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[illustration: map of Dieri country]

Last edit 7 months ago by ALourie

hw0327 Gason to Howitt

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14of course they were satisfied at my explanation.

The children of the wife and the children of teh Pirraoorooare naturally affectionate and underno circumstances do they show anyfeeling of jealousy.

(3) What are Blood Relations?I aught [sic] to have more fully explainedto you the "meaning" of "Blood Relations"

The blood relationsof the aboridgenes [sic] are not the sameas we call Blood Relations, theythe aboridgenes [sic] go a step furtherthan us. Uncles, aunts, "cousins"nieces + nephews. Fearthers [sic] mothersBrothers + Sisters. Therefore in the eyeof the law of the Dieyerrie, a cousinis a blood Relation, a niece anUncle, and also a mothers or FathersPirraooroo are Blood Relations in theStrict letter of the Law.

Last edit 9 months ago by ALourie
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15The most terrible insult teh abo-ridgenie [sic] of the Dieyerrie Tribe and neigh-bouring Tribe can offer to each otheris to call one another a "BooyoolooParchuna". Its literal meaning is thatto have sextual [sic] intercourse withall blood relations, this insult isnever used except in high state of passion.

I have known of one ortwo cases which was reported to meOne was a kind of a half morphroditewho it was reported had connectionwith his first cousin and on thecase being proved beyond doubt, thishalf morphrodite half idiot was sever-ely punished, in fact half killedand only for some of the influensial [sic]Elders of the Tribe, intruding for himhe would have been killed. Hisidiotic manner saved himas the friends argued that ashe was a poor Idiot he was not

Last edit 9 months ago by ALourie

hw0338 Notes titled 'Casual Remarks'

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to exist, without some law made by nature, to instruct them to a natural and proper way of communicating with each other,

Each dialect has its own articulations, accents, and tones, systematically arranged having a method of their own or in other words a grammer [sic]and can be reduced to grammatical principles.

You will have noticed from in the Dieyerrie, that the words with a little theory can be reduced to grammatical forms. The words, and sentences are in many cases exceedingly rich and musical -

Let a child make an error in grammer [sic], see theElders ready to pick the error up, and explain the sentence to the child in gram-matical form.

When a whiteman is learning a few sentences, as learners they invariably make some grammatical error, and the aborigine laughs, at his mothers tongue being butchered and generally has not sufficient English to explain and excuse himself for his rudeness, he laughs at us in the same way

Last edit 7 months ago by ALourie

hw0357 Vogelsang to Howitt 13/09/1880

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in purple colour Vogelsang underlined Dieri - relationships underlined

Last edit 7 months ago by Margaret T. Newman

XM302 Siebert to Howitt 1/June/1898

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teilung der Murdus wie die Dieri etc. in Materi und Kararu, sogar dieselben Worte dafiir, wenigstens die ,,Parnkalla", wenn ich mich nicht irre, auch die "Kukata ", ein ungemein starker, gefiirchteter tribe, des sen Manner weit iiber ihre Grenzen hinaus als die besten Speerwerfer bekannt sind. Das Weitere und Spezielle will ich versuchen, so bald wie moglich auszukunden und so in Gottes Namen in Gemeinschaft mit Ihnen und geleitet durch Sie, den mich urn Vie1es in Erfahrung iiberragenden, an die Arbeit gehen. Ihnen nochmals fUr das Vertrauen dankend gruBt Sie herzlich Ihr treuer

Otto Siebert

classification as the Murdus in regards to the Dieri etc. in Materi and Kararu, even the same words (for that), at least the 'Parnkalla', if I am not mistaken, also the 'Kakuta', an exceptionally stronger, feared tribe, whose men are known far outside of their borders as the best speer throwers. I want to get to work as soon as possible and in God's name in communion with you and led through you, [illegible. who have (taught? shown?) me many exceptional experiences]. Ever grateful to you for your confidence/trust, heartfelt greetings from your faithful,

Otto Siebert.

Last edit about 2 months ago by Joe

tip70-10-34-13 Howitt to Fison August 1880

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I do not yet fall in with you quite in seeing that M. by E.has been the prime factor in the [forces?] producing changeof descent from M. to F. - so far as my enquiries havegone I find that Elopement has obeyed the class laws, exceptperhaps with the Kurnai ancestors. I feel even doubtswhether we shall be able to regard M. by E. with them ashaving been the result of their peculiar conditions. Ibelieve this form of marriage will be found to have beenvery common throughout Victoria in tribes which nownot peculiar circumstance. I feel that I must hold myhand until I can compare all the evidence which Ihope to collect before long in Victoria. As soon as K. & K.is out - launched - I am going to attack our government.What you say as to [?betrothal] is very important and I willsee what my correspondents say as to such use [me?] being or not being "noa". My Coopers Creek man will be the one as heis well able to fish facts. You say you wish you could have aLake Trip - would it be possible for us to meet in Sydney fora week or ten days? Think of it. That which you say asto the H.C. will be carefully weighed. I do not think we are underany debt to him - in fact - I feel that so far as I am concernedthe boot is on the other leg - yet it may be well to be wise.My own feeling towards him is one of such complete repulsionthat I am inclined never ever to mention his name if Ican help it. Have you read Carpenter's "MentalPhysiology - no psychology [word underlined]. It is most interesting - I mention thisre your remarks on spiritism etc. - I do not expect much from Gason. I have had a letter from him inwhich he told me that the Dieri children followedtheir father's class - as I knew he was wrong in this.

Last edit 3 days ago by ChrisK

tip70-10-34-16 Howitt to Fison 22 August 1880

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point out that in most Australian dialects & [?often]as I know the possessive pronoun is an affix.

eg. bra bittel = bra -(ma)-ngittal = my husband,ngittal = my; also mūngaw ngūra} = your fatheretc. (Gippsland) or mūnganūra

also mamek = mamie (father) and yek or ngek= my (Wimmera etc)

also ūrninarūichūni abūri, Coopers Creek, and aperi akani= aperi = father, akani = my (Dieri - Coopers Creek)

I also note that the table, at page 10 is probably inaccurate.I doubt for instance whether the word tin should notbe tina - as found at Cooperss Creek where tina = footand tina-li = with a foot = walking "afoot" - asalso tūro - (a) - li = tūro = fire and li = with - ie with fire= to burn or burning. I feel very little confidence incomparisons resting on [simple - inserted] wordsselected from vocabulariesknowing as I do how difficult it is to catch the pronunciationof a strange and unknown language. Besides thisdifferent individuals, as well as individuals of differentlocalities, pronounce differently - supposesome foreigner were to make all English vocabularyin Somersetshire and another in Derbyshirewhat reliable inferences could be drawn as to the Englishlanguage? You will find in the tables I send, thatthe [?possessive] affix is very generally [and unintentionally - inserted] [?] in various lists [tomes - crossed out]attached to parts of the body, or to relatives of the informantbut never to independent objects as the sun, moonsnake etc. it would of course be attached to such as spear, tomahawk etc -I [?repeat/repent] that I have not been able to amend your note re McLennanand are [?Kaledonian Hunt] etc as I have mislaid your letterand have not been able to find it although my wife has spenther evenings looking through my papers independently of my ownsearch. I hope you did not set your mind on this.Robertson has sent Morgan's cheque to London for correction. He has Ihope also instructed his agents to arrange a [?] with an English house

Last edit about 1 month ago by HelenB

tip70-10-34-19 Howitt to Fison 8 October 1880

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too much. I therefore only send 3/6 worth for yourimmediate wants and will make furtherenquiries.I have not heard from you that you receivedthe remaining worked sheets of K & K so that I amstill in suspense about your friendsverdict.Monday Oct 11 1880 I wrote so far and then receivedK & K from Robertson andfound that the map was omitted. I telegraphed at once and this morninghe sends me a copy with map, and maps for [?] [?] without, including[?] a [?subscriber] here. This is most provoking and I have told himwhat I think of it. I expect he has sent copies to youalso without maps.He says he regrets etc a "few of the first were sent without!!!!In one of your notes No 6 Kurnandaburi you sayyou think with [?course] between [?] of Saunders [positing][?] [?] [?] of class rules. It is possible that it maypoint to the principle of[?Non] intercourse not having been as yet firmly established by public opinion.I suspect we shall find that restrictions such as those indicated by the Dieri legend, haveoriginated in the council of Elders; this council will include the medicine man; themedicine men as among the Kurnai professed to receive communications fromdeparted spirits; among the Dieri the ordinancerestricting [?communism] is said to havebeen given by the "great spirit" to the elders; such an ordinance would not at firstreceive unqualified obedience from the community - the next generation and the nextwould come to regard it as a sacred obligation. The question in my mind is thiswould not the [?] [?] with secret intercourse point also to the incomplete obedience to growing a law as well as the incomplete obedience to a decadent law.I feel pretty sure that if we are able to trace the origin of such [?enactments] that we shallfind it in the council of the elders and given through the mouth of the "[?Birraark]" ---that is receiving a religious sanction! In other words we shall find on a small scalethat which we find on a large scale in the Moses and the [?mosaic] law.-I have sent a copy of K & K to Morgan.Yours faithfullyAW Howitt

Last edit 9 days ago by HelenB

hw0060 J. G. Frazer to Miss Howitt 20 April 1908

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of your Father and Mr Fison, andthey have accepted the proposal oncondition that I undertake tochoose and edit the papers and toprefix a biographical notice of theauthors. I am quite willing to do so. Macmillan would undertakeall the risks and expenses andwould divide the profits with theauthors' families, with whom inall pecuniary matters they woulddeal direct, not through me.Do you approve of this proposal?

If you do, and MrFison's family approves also, I would propose to include allthe papers mentioned by DrHowitt in the preface to his book (pp. VIII-IX) together with the followign papers:1) "Remarks on the Class Systemscollected by Mr Palmer", Journal ofthe Anthropological Institute [underlined], XIII(1884) pp. 335-346.2) "The Dieri", Journal of the Anthrop. Inst. XX (1891) pp. 30-104

Last edit 4 months ago by ALourie
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