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nubium only with the other clans of the Kurnai. The Krauatun had this, but also in addition with the Murring.

This connubium, existing between the Krauatun, Kurnai, and the Coast Murring, leads to an interesting conclusion. It was not the alliance of two local divisions of the same tribe, but of divisions of two totally distinct tribes. It shows that even when two groups such as these met in the past as complete strangers to each other, permanent hostility was not necessarily the consequence. It even suggests that unless impassable natural barriers intervened between tribes, their outlying members would be sure to become more or less connected by the bonds of acquaintance and of kindred formed by inter-marriage. This would, it seems to me, be the case even when two tribes were, as entities, in a chronic state of feud with each other.

Who can say, or even conjecture, how long the two migratory streams had been separated when in olden times the ancestors of the Kurnai and of the Murring met first at Mallagoota Inlet? It is not possible to say, but the period must have been sufficiently long to admit of their customs having diverged, the initiation ceremonies of one branch having been lost, and of their languages having become mutually unintelligible. Yet, in spite of all this, we find the two migrations not only on as friendly a footing with each other as were the Kurnai clans to each other, but also in some respects having undergone a partial fusion.

On the grounds I have now stated, it seems to me almost if not quite clear that the Kurnai ancestors entered into Gippsland from the westward, or perhaps also from the north-westward, in one or in more than one migration.

The Bidweli Tribe.

The discussion of the preceding questions brings into view a subject of much interest, namely, the Bidweli tribe.1

Between the country of the Krauatun Kurnai at the Snowy River and along the coast, and that of the Murring of the Maneroo tableland to the north and of the sea coast Murring to the east, there lies a large stretch of country which was occupied by the now almost extinct Bidweli tribe. This tract is one of the most inhospitable that I have seen in Australia. I have traversed its scrubs, mountains, and swamps four several times, and I observed little in it of living creatures excepting a few wallaby, snakes, leeches, mosquitoes, and flies. Yet the Bidweli inhabited the few small open tracts in it and called themselves "men" (maap).

1 Sometimes spoken of as the Bidwel, or Bidwelk. I cannot give any translation of this word.

After lengthened inquiries from the few survivors, and from those of their neighbours who knew them, I have ascertained as follows:

Their language is compounded from the surrounding dialects. The class-names and totems are similarly derived from their neighbours, for I have found them to be Yeerung (Krauatun Kurnai), Yukembrūk = Crow, and Tchuteba = Rabbit Rat (Ngarego), and Yalonga Rock Wallaby (Coast Murring). I even found one family bearing the name of Bunjil. Their relationship terms are also derived from the same neighbouring tribes, some being Kurnai and some Murring, as might have been forecast from their compound language. Further, the Bidweli had no initiation ceremonies, and the last survivors are not, as I have observed, even admitted to those of the neighbouring tribes with whom there was connubium. This prima facie case of a mixed descent is strengthened by the case of a Bidweli man claiming as his country the upper valley of the Brodribb River. He stated to me that his "father's father" was a Kurnai of Buchan who left his country and settled in the small open tract known as the Goungra Valley, west of Mount Ellery. His son obtained a wife from the Thedora of Omeo, and the son of this marriage, my informant, married a Ngarego woman. This pedigree accounts for both Yeerung and Yukembruk.

Such a case as this of my informant's grandfather is just on all fours with one mentioned by me elsewhere of a man who, having broken the moral law of his tribe, escaped out of reach of its vengeance, and only reappeared when the whites had settled the country, and he could thus find protection against tribal vengeance.

I can feel no doubt that the Bidweli country has been an Australian "Cave of Adullam," and that its tribe has been built up by the refugees from tribal justice or individual vengeance, who have organised themselves so far as they could do so on the old accustomed lines. It is a good example of what Dr. Hearn has called the formation of a non-genealogical tribe.

The general conclusions which may be drawn from preceding statements are these:

So far as I can learn, it was only about fifteen years back that this man "came in," that is to say, abandoned his wild life and went to live among the stations of the Maneroo tableland. He was the last wild blackfellow in Gippsland.

This is not, as might be supposed, a Scotch name given to the locality by some of the early settlers, who were mostly from North Britain, but a native word, which should be properly written Bukan, meaning the large net-bag in which the blackfellows carried their things. The proper name of the place is Bakan-mǎnji, meaning "Bag-there," or the "Place of the Bag."

3 "Kamilaroi and Kurnai," p. 348, footnote.

(1) The early aborigines of Australia in spreading southwards over the continent followed the well-watered tracts along the coasts and the rivers.

(2) The spreading population gradually became separated into groups of tribes having certain common features, one of which, namely, the use of a word meaning "man," conveniently affords a means of marking the extent of such of these groups as may be termed "nations."

(3) Where migratory streams again met, the tribes which formed their extreme terminations coalesced and established connubium, in spite of difference in custom and language.

(4) The Kurnai tribe is an offshoot from such a migratory stream which spread round the northern and western flanks of the Australian Alps, and penetrated to Gippsland in two or more immigrations.

(5) Tribes have been formed not only by the regular process of growth of groups separated from genealogical tribes, but also by the organisation on the accustomed lines of aggregates of "broken men."


Dr. E. B. TYLOR, in calling attention to the chief points of Mr. Howitt's argument on the ancestry and former home of the Kurnai tribe, remarked that the anthropological interest attaching to this tribe, which induced Mr. Howitt to study in such detail the traces of its past movements, depends on its illustrating a remarkable course of social change. While the neighbouring tribes follow the ordinary Australian matriarchal rule of female descent, and are divided into intermarrying classes, the Kurnai have as to males the rule of male descent, and marry into different divisions within the tribe. Their peculiar marriage-custom, however, gives reason to suppose that exogamous marriage-classes, comparable with those of the Kamilaroi, once existed among them. Couples elope together, and though this is the only mode of marriage the parties are pursued and punished as offenders, till eventually the crime is condoned and the married pairs settle into the tribe. This is fairly explained by considering the Kurnai to represent one intermarrying body whose corresponding body has been destroyed or separated, so that they are now compelled to violate the law of exogamy, though they do so under ceremonial protest. At the same time they have made some part of the transition from the matriarchal to the patriarchal system. These are changes of such importance in social development, that Mr. Howitt rightly judges it worth while to ascertain 2 F


the historical circumstances under which, in this particular case, they have come to pass. Referring to Mr. Howitt's paper on the initiation ceremonies of the Kurnai ("Journ. Anthrop. Inst.," Vol. XIV, p. 301), Dr. Tylor produced specimens of the sacred tundun, or "bull-roarer," sent over to him by Mr. Howitt, and whirled them to show the difference between the deep tone of the larger or "man tundun" (Grandfather) and the weaker shrill tone of the small "woman tundun." Illustrative of the horror felt by the natives lest these sacred instruments should be seen by women or children, is the myth current in this region of a deluge caused by some children finding a tundun which had been hidden in a bush, and bringing it home to their mothers, whereupon the sea burst out over the land. After displaying the remarkable mechanical action of the bull-roarer, Dr. Tylor noticed its wide prevalence in religious mysteries, as where in front of the Moqui procession of dancers, each with a live rattlesnake or two in his mouth, the priest walks whirling a bull-roarer, much as Mr. Andrew Lang has shown the ancient Greeks in the mysteries of Dionysos Zagreus to have whirled their poußos, which the description shows plainly to have been a bull-roarer. This word itself is good local English, belonging to the flat slip of wood fastened at the end to a string which represents in European boys' play the instrument which has had so high a mystic import in the barbaric and ancient world.


FRANCIS GALTON, Esq., F.R.S., President, in the Chair.

The Minutes of the last meeting were read and signed.

The following presents were announced, and thanks voted to the respective donors:


From H.H. PRINCE ROLAND BONAPARTE.-A Collection of Photographs of New Caledonians and Australian Natives (Queensland).

From H. W. SETON KARR, Esq.-Photographs of North American Indians.

From the SMITHSONIAN INSTITUTION.-Annual Report for 1883. From the DEUTSCHE GESELLSCHAFT FÜR ANTHROPOLOGIE.-Correspondenz-Blatt. October, 1885.

From the SOCIEDADE DE GEOGRAPHIA DE LISBOA.-Subsidios para a Historia de Jornalismo nas Provincias ultramarinas Portuguezas. Pelo Socio Brito Aranha.

From the AUTHOR.-Ueber Bekleidung, Schmuck und Tätowirung der Papuas der Südostküste von Neu-Guinea, von Dr. Otto Finsch.

An Address before the Section of Anthropology of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, at Ann Arbor, August, 1885. By William H. Dall. From the ACADEMY.-Atti della Reale Accademia dei Lincei. Serie quarta. Vol. I, Fas. 24.

From the SOCIETY.-Journal of the Society of Arts. Nos. 1723, 1724.

Proceedings of the Royal Geographical Society. December, 1885.

Journal of the China Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society.
1885, No. 3,

Boletim da Sociedade de Geographia de Lisboa. 5a Serie,
No. 5.

Mittheilungen der Anthropologischen Gesellschaft in Wien.
XV Band., Heft 1.

From the EDITOR.-"Nature." Nos. 839, 840.

"Science." No. 146.

L'Homme. No. 20.

Bullettino di Paletnologia Italiana. Serie II, Tom. I, N. 9 e 10.

Mr. H. H. JOHNSTON exhibited and described a collection of photographs of African Natives, upon which Professor Flower made some remarks.

Mr. H. W. SETON KARR exhibited and described some photographs of North American Indians.

Mr. JOSEPH HATTON exhibited a number of ethnological objects from North Borneo, collected by his son, the late Mr. F. Hatton.

Mr. W. M. CROCKER exhibited and described some objects from Borneo, and made some observations on Mr. Hatton's exhibit.

Miss MAN exhibited a collection of photographs of Nicobarese taken by her brother, Mr. E. H. Man.

Professor R. MELDOLA exhibited and described some photographs of Nicobarese.

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