Page:Germ Growers.djvu/51

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46
THE GERM GROWERS.

were they doing there, and what were you doing there?" "Pigtailman cook, wash clothes, white man ride after sheep, dogs too, Gioro ride, speak English, snare wallaby."

"How long did he stay there?" One year six months.

"How long snce he left?" One year.

I will not give you much of Gioro's dialect; it was many days before I could readily understand him, and it was not a sort of dialect which is worth studying for its own sake. I learned from him that he belonged to a strong and populous tribe which occupied part of the country to the west of the Daly Waters. They had a king or chief whom Gioro held in the highest regard. His name was Bomero: the accent on the first syllable and the final "o" short like the "o" in rock. This Bomero was a great warrior and a mighty strong man, and possessed of great personal influence. It was my fate, as you shall hear, to make his acquaintance, and I found him by no means the equal of Gioro in any of the greatest qualities of the man or the gentleman. Like some public leaders among more civilised people he owed his position partly to his fluent persuasiveness, partly to his violent self-assertiveness, and more than all to what I must call his roguery. Black men and white men are wonderfully like in some things.