Howitt points out, which can be twisted into referring even indirectly to their first arrival.
Howitt and Dr Roth appear to have satisfied themselves of a belief, common to most tribes, in a mythic being (he has different names in different tribes) having some of the attributes of a Supreme Deity.
But Mr Howitt finds in this being " no trace of a divine nature, though under favourable conditions the beliefs might have developed into an actual religion."
Howitt, The Native Tribes of South-east Australia (1904) and On the Organization of Australian Tribes (1889); G.
Howitt, Kamilaroi and Kurnai, Group Marriage and Relationship (Melbourne, 1880); H.
Howitt, The Native Tribes of South-East Australia, 394, cf.
Howitt, The Native Tribes of South-Eastern Australia (Lond.
Thus among the tribes of south-eastern Australia described by Mr Howitt, 10 the native rites and laws handed down from generation to generation were supposed to have been first imparted by some higher being such as Nurrundere, who made all things on the earth; or Nurelli, who created the whole country, with the rivers, trees and animals; or Daramulun, who (like Nurrundere) bestowed weapons on the men, and instituted the rites and ceremonies connected with life and death.
Waitz, and, though disputed by many squatters and most anthropologists, is now admitted on the strength of the evidence of Howitt, Cameron, Mrs Langloh Parker, Dawson, W.
Howitt speaks too of the Dieri Kutchi, who inspires medicine-men with ideas, but about him our information is scanty.
But tribes far from the sea, as in northern New South Wales and Queensland, have the All-Father belief, with individual marriage and female descent, while tribes of the north coast, with male descent, are credited with no All-Father; and the Arunta, as far as possible from the sea, have no All-Father (save in Strehlow's district), and have individual marriage and male reckoning of descent in matters of inheritance; while the Urabunna and Dieri, with female descent and the custom of pirrauru (called " group marriage " by Howitt), are not credited with the All-Father belief.
46, 2).6 In considering the whole question, one must beware of the 1 For these see Brough Smith with Howitt, Native Tribes of Southeast Australia, Aborigines of Victoria; Kuhn, on bird fire-bringer in Isle of Man, Die Herabkunft des Feuers, p. 109; Van Gennep, Mythes et legendes d'Australie.