Handwritten notes on Kurnai, Tongaranka, Wolgal, Yuin, Adelaide, Turribul by Howitt

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Transcription - Page 1

It was only the flesh of enemies that is of blacks of other
tribes that the Kurnai eat - Kurnai did not so far as I
have even been able to learn eat Kurnai.

It was not the whole of the body that was eaten but the
muscle of the arms and legs and the skin of the thighs and
of the sides of the body.

An instance [which - crossed out] occurred long before the white men
came into Gippsland was handed down in the tribes.
A large number of the Brabrolung, Krauatalung and
Tatungolung had gone up towards the Maneroo
tableland in a war party. [At Gellingall, about - crossed out]
On the Buchan River west of Gellingall they left their
women and following up the River to [Fann where - crossed out]
[Fanwick now is - crossed out] a place called Fanwick
their spies surprised two Brajerak (see p._), an old
man and his son. The former was killed, but the latter
escaped. The skin of the slain man was eaten and
his legs cut off and carried to their camp, where the
old men roasted the meat and shared the flesh among the
boys, in order that “when the old men were dead, the boys
might know what to do”.

Though the Kurnai Tankowillin + Blair where I have mentioned elsewhere
were of these boys and they told me that the flesh was "very
good and much sweeter than Beef."

[On an - crossed out] When the Kurnai were on another
expedition under their Head man Bruthen munji to attack their Enemies the Omeo Theddora
on the Upper Tambo River, they surprised a camp then
killed [some of the - crossed out] the men and some children, but kept [keeping -crossed out] the
women. The skin of these Brajeraks was flayed from the
thighs and from the sides and was roasted and eaten.

Women were not permitted to see this or to participate
in the feast [??] of the spoils of the slain.

[In this instance- crossed out] Tankowillin the [?taster?] of the last mentioned was an actor
[also - crossed out] in this [cannot] case and was one of the spies who
discovered the two Brajeraks.

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Document Details

Letter From
Letter To
Author Howitt, Alfred William
Country Australia
Holding Institution Museums Victoria
Collection Name Alfred W. Howitt Collection
Registration Number XM 698
Medium Notes
Summary Draft notes for sections of text in Howitt's publication 'Native Tribes of South-East Australia', 1904, from page 751. References the practice or non-practice of cannibalism by a number of groups. Informants identified by A.W. Howitt include: J.W. Boultbee -Tongaranka; Reverend J. Bulmer - Wolgal; Ienbin [Bob Curran] - Yuin; Dr McKinlay - Adelaide tribe; Mr Hugh Murray [possibly Barrabool] and Thomas Petrie -Turribul.
Physical Description Draft. Handwritten ink, undated. Four foolscap sheets and a slip of paper; five pages. Condition: foxing.