A Descriptive Vocabulary of the Language in Common Use Amongst the Aborigines of Western Australia: Embodying Much Interesting Information Regarding the ... Natives and the Natural History of the Country

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W. S. Orr & Company, 1842 - Aboriginal Australians - 171 pages
Note on pronunciation; Approx. 1500 Aboriginal words with English meanings; approx. 1800 English words with Aboriginal equivalents; Locality of word given - mainly Perth area, Vasse R., King Georges Sound; Includes details on parts of body, artefacts, economic life, religion, art, social organization, place names, geography, flora, fauna.

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Page 7 - Xanthorea or grass-tree, and the wattle-tree, have a fragrant, aromatic flavour. and form a favourite food among the natives, either raw or roasted. The presence of these grubs in a Xanthorea is thus ascertained : if the top of one of these trees is observed to be dead, and it contain any Bardi, a few sharp kicks given to it with the foot will cause it to crack and shake, when it is pushed over and the grub extracted, by breaking the tree to pieces with a hammer. The Bardi of the Xanthorea are small,...
Page 11 - An island. The natives have a tradition that Rottnest, Carnac, and Garden Island, once formed part of the mainland, and that the intervening ground was thickly covered with trees ; which took fire in some unaccountable way, and burned with such intensity that the ground split asunder with a great noise, and the sea rushed in between, cutting off those islands from the mainland.
Page 35 - A cave. The only vestige of antiquity or art which has yet been discovered, consists of a circular figure rudely cut or carved into the face of a rock, in a cavern near York, with several impressions of open hands formed on the stone around it. The natives can give no rational account of this. They tell some fables of the moon having visited the cave and executed the work. They have little curiosity regarding it, and pay it no respect in any way.
Page 72 - The gum of one species of acacia, which is sometimes prepared by being first pounded, then mixed with spittle, and made into a ball, and, finally, beaten into a flat cake, when it is kept by the natives as a provision against a time of want. It is considered good, and is found to be very nourishing. Merda, s.
Page 33 - To lie ; to tell lies. Fortunately for the ends of justice, when a native is accused of any crime, he often acknowledges his share in the transaction with perfect candour, generally inculpating others by way of exculpating himself. Were it not for this habit, there would be a total failure of justice in the great majority of cases of aggression committed by them against the white people.
Page 92 - Colonial pheasant, nondescript? It scrapes together a large heap of earth or sand, perhaps two to three feet high, and five to six feet in diameter, in which it deposits its eggs about a foot deep, which are left to be hatched by the sun. It is the only bird of this habit in the colony. The eggs are very large in proportion to the size of the bird, and of a delicate flavour. It would be very valuable if domesticated. The mother is said to come and uncover -the eggs at the time of maturity. Ngoy-ang,...
Page 28 - Djandga, s. — The dead. The re-appearance of deceased persons. A. term applied to Europeans, who are supposed to be aborigines, under another colour, restored to the land of their nativity. This idea prevails equally on the eastern as on the western coasts of Australia, in places 2000 miles apart from each other. It has taken its rise most likely from the supposition that none but those who were already acquainted with the country would or could find their way to it.
Page vii - Journal of the Royal Geographical Society. The consonants are to be sounded as in English, except that G is invariably hard ; the vowels, for the most part, as in the following English words : — A, as in father, except when it has the short mark (a) over it, or at the end of a word, when it is to be pronounced as in the first syllable of mamma ; E, as in there, whether at the beginning, middle, or end of a word ; I, as in fatigue ; O, as in old ; Ow, as in cow, now ; U, as in rude.
Page 69 - The large yellow cone-shaped flower of the Banksia, containing a quantity of honey, which the natives are fond of sucking. Hence the tree has obtained the name of the honeysuckle tree. One flower contains at the proper season more than a tablespoonful of honey. Birds, ants, and flies consume it. Man-gyt-dju, .1.
Page 9 - rushes' (Arm), bata 'rushes' (Bat 1914), bata, batta, barte 'grass' (Cur), bardupup 'rushes' (Dav) , bat-ta 'a sort of rush with which they sew their cloaks...

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