Journal Of An Overland Expedition In Australia, By Ludwig Leichhardt

 -  They were all
well made, good looking men; and one young man, whose body was coloured
red, was even handsome - Page 400
Journal Of An Overland Expedition In Australia, By Ludwig Leichhardt - Page 400 of 524 - First - Home

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They Were All Well Made, Good Looking Men; And One Young Man, Whose Body Was Coloured Red, Was Even Handsome, Although His Expression Was Somewhat Wild And Excited.

All of them seemed to have been circumcised.

Charley told me afterwards, that, at my first approach, some of them held their bommerangs ready to throw, but I do not think that it was more than a simple attitude of defence, in case I should have proved the aggressor. On my inquiring about water, they pointed in the direction which we were going, and seemed to say, "It is far, but it is large; Baco! Baco! Umara!" they frequently repeated with emphasis. John also told me that an old man had made signs of a large water, but not fit to drink, and was very anxious for us to change our course, Mr. Roper had understood the same. But, as long as we were ignorant what was before us, the pantomime and words of the natives enabled us to form but very vague and hopeless guesses. It was easy to understand them, when we knew the reality. These natives must have had some intercourse with white men, or Malays, for they knew the use of a knife, and valued it so highly, that one of them offered a gin for one. They appeared equally acquainted with the use of our fire-arms. No doubt they had seen the Malays, and probably some had accompanied them to the islands; as it is a common custom of the Malays to take natives home with them, that they may become friendly to them when fishing for trepang at this part of the gulf.

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