XM711_ICDMS_lowres Yuin

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[on top right of page] Messenger is called Jeri-ir also called gud-jin

The Kuringal of the Coast Murring

I have already described how these ceremonies are initiated by one of the Head men and how the people who assemble at them called together and for details as to the five tribes who attended the Kurial I refer to p. _.

The ceremonial meeting having been called together, that moiety of the community which called it prepares the ground and gets all ready for the arrival of the various contingents Some spot has been selected where a good supply of food is obtainable. The preparation of the ground is regulated by the the [sic] particular form which the ceremonies have taken in the tribe which initiates them. The best illustration will be the ceremonies described in this paper which were held in the country of the Coast Murring tribe but which were attended by people from inland - [from the -crossed out] for instance the Maneroo Tableland on one side and the Braidwood district on the other.

The ceremonies may[be of- crossed out] slightly differ in detail. For instance those [on the coa - crossed out] inland have the circular mound thrown up within the cleared ground and the more sacred enclosure at some little distance. This form of the ceremonie [sic] is called the Būnan (1) and nearly resemble the Būrbŭng of the Wiradjuri tribe, an outlyer of which on the Turon River used in olden times to attend the Bunan held by the Maneroo tribe.

[Margin note] (1) Probably from Bŭning = to knock or strike, having references to the knocking out of the teeth.

The form of ceremonial on the coast does not always include use of the mound, but instead used a cleared space in some suitable locality near what is also arranged [the - crossed out] more sacred spots for instance the place where the tooth's knocked out and other ceremonies which I shall describe.

The ceremonies are also spoken of as the Kuringal (2) and where the circular mound [is in is m- crossed out] is omitted they are spoken of as Kadja-walŭng or "Raw" for the reason that where there is no mound the novice could be seated on it and roasted before great fires to test their endurance.

[Margin note] (2) From Kūring = the front

The roasting ceremony may be mentioned here well for all the novices are seated on this mound each one holding erect in his hand his mothers "digging stick" (yam stick), on which are hung the man's belt and other articles of male attire with which he will during the ceremonie [sic] be invested. It is inside this circular

[written in left hand margin next to title and first paragraph] On some Australian Ceremonies of Initiation Ant Inst, May 1884 - p. 2.

Aust Ceremonies of Initiation Anth Inst G B + I May 1884. p2.

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mound that the preliminary ceremonial dances take place at which the women + children are present and a cleared path leads from the Greater Būnan to [the - crossed out] another enclosure called the "Little Bunan" enclosed by boughs where the [teeth are - crossed out] tooth is knocked out. The women and children are sent away for the [great - crossed out] Great Bunan before the procession of the intiated with the novice take places along the cleared path to the little Bunan.

The difference between the Bunan and the Kuringal is mainly in the absence of the earthen mound of the cleared path to the lesser Bunan and in the more or less extended or developed ceremonial.

I shall now describe the Kūringal ceremonie [sic] of the coast tribe at which I was present and indeed which were held at my instance asking through some of the old men including two of their leading medicine men. These negociations [sic] and the messages which had to be sent to and from the coast took up twelve months during which my own messenger, then Headman of the Snowy River tribe [travelled - crossed out] made this journey going + coming of nearly three hundred miles.

[On the arrival of a contingent - crossed out] Men who attended [these ceremo- crossed out] this Kuringal were from a tract of country which lay [??] far as extending along the south coast from Twofold Bay to the Shoalhaven River and inland from the Victorian Boundary line to Braidwood.

On the arrival of a contingent led by the messenger who summoned it, the party halts within hearing distance of the Camp and a peculiar long drawn out "Coo-ee" by the messenger announces its arrival. On this being answered from the Camp the men follow their conductor to the ceremonial place, which the women proceed to encamp on that side of the general encampment which is nearest to their own country.

Meanwhile the men having reached the ceremonial place, which in this instance was about a quarter of a mile from the main camp, sit down while after a silence the headman of the newly arrived contingent and the head man of the people who receive it, converse finally all the old men converse together either about the ceremonie [sic] to be held or about news brought by the new arrivals The arrival of a contingent of often arranged to be about nightfall

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3 The next proceeding was for all the men at the council place together with the new arrivals to run in a long winding line forward to the general encampment.

The line is headed by one of the principal Headmen or sometimes by the "sister husband" of the novices (1). Each man holds a bough in his hand or in some case a boomerang, as did the Headman who led the line I am now describing. The boughs are struck by the men all on the ground from side to side as the long line winds forward, staying in unison with the deep guttural exclamation of Huh! Wah! The signal for the starting of this long snake like procession is given by this last around messenger when drawing out his "bull roarer" (mudji) (2) from its concealment swings it around with a loud wirring noise. I use the word snake like because it best represents the movement of the procession that this resemblance is not merely fanciful may be seen from this, that the very first event - act by which the women are made aware that the men have determined to hold a Kurungal is, that one of the last initiated young men is sent to run through the camp shouting "a snake! a snake" - as the men then follow and form the procession

So soon as the sound of the wirring is heard the men then commence their ceremonies around and hte women start up at their camp roll thier rugs up and commence to drum and to sing the "tooth song" which is intended to cause the novices teeth to come out easily.

The procession of men is by this time winding, stamping and shouting Huh! hah! through the entire encampment, visiting each separate hut and as I may say gathering the women and children into a clear space outside of it. Here the women and children crowd together, while the men dance round them in more than a double fold, if the line is long enough. In this instance there were about thirty men engaged. One of the men now starts forward shouting loudly the name of the locality of the newly arrived contingent which is hailed with shouts by the other men who then silently raise their boughs over the womens heads towards the sky. In this way a number of the most distant localities from which these are people present are announced not only to the assembled community in words, but if the upward pointed gesture by biughs, boomerangs and fingers to the great master (1) [this gesture sign - crossed out] pointing with the finger to the sky is

[footnote at the bottom of the page] (1) Biamban means master. As stated at this Kuringal a man is the Biamban of his wife and children an old man is the Biamban of the young men also obey its orders the Gommera, Headman is the Biamban of the people of his local group the principal Gommera is the Biamban of all the other Gommeras and Daramulun the great Supernatural Being is the Biamban over everything.

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