Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 17, 1906.djvu/189

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Native Tribes of Sotith-East Australia.

marriage," and he says in the communication I am now discussing that it is "a sport" confined to tribes of the Kirrara-Matheri phratry names, and in his opinion a later and special modification of individual marriage.

He has gone into this question at large in his late work, The Secret of the Totem, At a future time I shall have something to say as to the whole of his argument and his conclusions as stated therein, but it will suffice for the present to adduce certain evidence which I think should convince any one who approaches the subject with an open mind and an absence of bias, that pirrauru-marriage is not a "later and special modification of individual marriage."

I commence with the Dieri and Urabunna as representing those tribes which have group-marriage, in the pirrauru and piraungaru practice. Other instances will follow, taken from tribes which fairly represent the whole of South-East Australia and also those described by Messrs. Spencer and Gillen in Central and North Australia.


Marital terms include
F. Husband, husband's brothers, sister's husband.
Pirrauru. M. Wife, wife's sisters, brother's wife.

(F. means "female speaking," M. means "male speaking.)

All the terms given in this series of relationships are group terms, which include both own and tribal relations. In this tribe every woman ultimately becomes a pirrauru wife, having probably been a tippa-malku wife in the first instance. I have shown in my Native Tribes[1] that betrothal is not the only way in which a man may obtain a wife, she not being his pirrauru already.

  1. Short for Native Tribes of South-East Australia, pp. 177-186.