By James Dawson
James Dawson first released Australian Aborigines in 1881, after determining that his cautious description of the tribes, languages, customs, and features of the indigenous peoples of the western district of Victoria was once too cumbersome for its initially meant booklet in a newspaper. basically a field-inspired anthropological account of the dwindling Aboriginal inhabitants, written prior to the emergence of anthropology as a proper self-discipline, Dawson's publication attracts on his daughter's skill to talk the neighborhood languages and makes an attempt a balanced description of a tradition he thought of ill-used and under-appreciated through white settlers. Minute information about garments, instruments, payment and ideology mix to depict a posh society that possessed hugely ritualised customs deserving of admire. Dawson additionally incorporated an intensive vocabulary of phrases in 3 indigenous languages that he was hoping might facilitate extra cross-cultural realizing. His paintings offers invaluable resource fabric for contemporary researchers in anthropology and linguistics.
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Extra resources for Australian Aborigines: The Languages and Customs of Several Tribes of Aborigines in the Western District of Victoria, Australia
Her relations then remove her and her child to her own tribe, and compel the father of the child to marry her, unless he be a relative. In that case she must remain unmarried. If a husband is unfaithful, his wife cannot divorce him. She may make a complaint to the chief, who can punish the man by sending him away from his tribe for two or three moons; and the guilty woman is very severely punished by her relatives. The courtship of those who have not been betrothed to each other when young is regulated by very strict laws.
If he take upon him the duty of protecting her, he must challenge her husband and defeat him in single combat in presence of the chiefs and friends of both parties. ' If a husband knows that his wife is in love with another man, and if he has no objection to part with her, he takes her basket to the man's wuurn, and leaves it, But as no marriage, or exchange of wives can take place without the consent of the chief, the wife remains with her husband till the first great meeting, when the bargain is confirmed.
TOOLS. THE natives have few tools; the principal one is the stone axe, which resembles the stone celts found in Europe. This useful and indispensable implement is of various sizes. It is made chiefly of green stone, shaped like a wedge, and ground at one end to a sharp edge. At the other end it is grasped in the bend of a doubled piece of split sapling, bound with kangaroo sinews, to form a handle, which is cemented to it with a composition of gum and shell lime. This cement is made by gathering fresh wattle gum, pulling it into small pieces, masticating it with the teeth, and then placing it between two sheets of green bark, which are put into a shallow hole in the ground, and covered up with hot ashes till the gum is dissolved.
Australian Aborigines: The Languages and Customs of Several Tribes of Aborigines in the Western District of Victoria, Australia by James Dawson