Page:Native Tribes of South-East Australia.djvu/588

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562
CH.
NATIVE TRIBES OF SOUTH-EAST AUSTRALIA

with grass-tree gum one to each end of a piece of twisted fibre. An old man, the father of one of the boys, begged me not to put the teeth into my "Joïa bag," and Yibai, who was present, said that he would by and by fetch them back.

Some twelve months after, I was surprised by the arrival at Sale, in Gippsland, where I was then living, of the


FIG. 33.—1 AND 3. WOODEN IMPLEMENT USED TO EXTRACT TEETH AT YUIN KURINGAL; 2. TEETH WHEN EXTRACTED ATTACHED TO TWISTED FIBRE BY GUM. ×½

man who had acted as my messenger during the ceremonies. In the usual secret manner in which anything relating to the Kuringal is spoken of, he whispered to me that one of the boys had been taken ill, and that the old men feared that I had placed the teeth in my bag with Joïas, and had thereby caused his sickness. The old men had therefore sent him to ask me for them. I relieved his mind by showing him the teeth carefully packed in a small tin box by themselves, and sent him off with them on his return journey of some two hundred and fifty miles.