Page:Native Tribes of South-East Australia.djvu/826

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800

NATIVE TRIBES OF SOUTH-EAST AUSTRALIA

the Yaurorka language, Mr. Siebert has not yet been able to make it out completely. The translation of part of the third and fourth lines has not been obtained. Warpi is a kind of covering for the arms. It is ornamented with Tunka, which is a cotton-like substance, and is tied on with a hair cord which is crossed over the arm. By the movement of the arms, which accompany the song, the arm-covering simulates the waving of the wings of the rain-bringing Tapayuru, which is a bat. The whole song will, I hope, be prepared at some future time by my valued correspondent, the Rev. Otto Siebert.

A Legend of the Tirari Horde of the Dieri Tribe

Two young men outraged a young woman, who then gave water to her husband, with a splinter of wood in it, as a sign of what they had done. He poured out the water, with the splinter in it, on the ground, and all the people agreed that the young men should be strangled. This was done, but they revived, and were again strangled, the ground being coloured with the blood which flowed from their noses and mouths. The place where this happened is called Midla-kumari.[1] There were a great number of people there, who by the order of the Mura-mura Palungopina[2] dug an immensely long and deep grave, in which the two young men were laid, and this was where the lake Tauian-ngaritiangu now is. Palungopina then ordered the earth to fall in, and thereby all the people who were there were swallowed up in it. He then ordered them all to rise up in the form of Miri-wiri,[3] which flew up with wings to the sky, and Palungopina followed them. This was at Padiminka.[4]

The Tirari and Dieri believe that they will themselves go up to the sky from a place called Palkatra-karanti.[5]

Kakakudana[6] and the Origin of the Mound Springs: A Legend of the Urabunna Tribe

This legend professes to account for the origin of the fossilised marsupials and other creatures which are found in several places in the Lake Eyre district, and also for that of the mound springs which are so marked a feature of that part of Australia. These fossils are called by the tribes-people Kadimarkara, creatures which in the Mura-mura times descended from the sky-country to the earth, by

  1. Midla is "nose," and Kumari is "blood."
  2. The meaning of this name is not known, but Palu means "naked."
  3. Miri-wiri is "maggot."
  4. Padi is the witchetty grub of Spencer and Gillen.
  5. This name means "Climb up in the darkness."
  6. The meaning of Kakakudana is not known.