[Nŭnnŭng-ngŭt?]] was formerly a great man. At
that time there was only one Emu and that Emu had
two very large eggs. All the totems (birds) tried to kill this Emu
but it killed many of them. They then sent for the bat
and he killed the Emu. There was a great meeting
of all the blacks and the Emu was roasted in an
oven and eaten - the Bat shared it out among
all the totems. The man who carried the Emu
to the cooking oven was ( ) which is a
little bird with a black front to its head a black
neck and white back. They did not give him any
of the cooked meat. He therefore wentaway and cried
and rubbing his eyes with his knuckles made
them black as they now are. This little bird
is not however one of the totems.
In playing a game at ball which they
kicked about the different totems
present took different sides and
there were men and women on each side
eg. Gartchŭka men and women against
Wūrant men and women.

Johnny remembers that he, his mother, and her mother
all played on the same side at ball. -------

His cousin George played with the Wūrant
in the other side.

[Left hand margin]
See contra

There were also stories
about Yernt = moon
and Gertūk = morepork

Notes and Questions

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Could "morepork" = Mopoke?


Hi Christine, I have read Howitt using morepork elsewhere. I know that there is both a morepork bird and of course the mopoke, so I am not sure which Howitt is referencing here. It would be interesting to know which bird the Wotjobaluk identify as the Gertuk, as it may help to clarify Howitt's intentions here.