Marngrook: The Long-Ago Story of Aussie Rules

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Magabala Books, 2012 - Aboriginal Australian literature - 28 pages
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A children's story based on the sometimes controversial theory of how Australian Rules Football developed from 'marngrook', a ball game played by Aboriginal people in north-west Victoria more than 150 years ago. This fictionalised story of Marngrook takes place at the foot of Duwul, the highest mountain in the spectacular Grampians region of north-west Victoria, the traditional country of people from the Djab-Wurrung and Jardwadjali clans. When Wawi, a clan Elder, notices that his son, Jaara, and the other children only have old toys to play with, he goes for a walk to see what he can find. Wawi comes across a banya (ring-tailed possum) and has an idea. He kills the banya and skins it, and sews up the skin with a tendon from a kangaroo tail. Wawi stuffs the skin with emu feathers and moulds it into the shape of an emu egg. Jaara and the children play with the marngrook every day and spend hours practising their kicks. One day, when Jaara kicks the marngrook far into the bush, he finds himself lost and has to bear the consequences of not listening to his Elders.

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