Filed under Australian history

A Rebel Redeemed

A Rebel Redeemed

Robert Walpole passed the Black Acts in response to poaching in windsor Forest in the early 18th century. The law should have been a short term one, but was not repealed till many decades later. A wide range of former misdemeanors or traditional rights were converted to capital punishments, but they were often converted to … Continue reading

A First for Early Australians

A difficult piece – should it be under news or olds? This is an incredible piece of archaeology, from Wednesday’s i paper: Archaeologists have unearthed the world’s oldest-known axe in Western Australia – dating back as far as 49,000 years – suggesting that early Aboriginal settlers may have been more cutting edge than they have been … Continue reading

Avian Arsonists

This is a rather amazing article from JSTOR on Australian birds of prey setting fires in order to flush out animals they hunt. Lots of animals take advantage of and adapt to changing circumstances, but this is the first of its kind. It’s impressive, but scary, and raises questions as to how dangerous such behaviour … Continue reading

Aboriginal Genes Dated

This is from the i paper, by Steve Connor last week. “Aboriginal Australians have been genetically isolated from the rest of humanity for 50,000 years, a DNA study has revealed.The finding contradicts suggestions by some scholars that they intermarried with people from Asia 4,000 years ago. A detailed analysis of the male Y chromosome from … Continue reading

Oxford Not Referencing

A while ago I did a post base on the book ‘Old Oak’ in which I described an incident from the life of famous 19th century pugilist, Bendigo. This is an unusual name, and I wondered if there was a link with the gold mining town in Victoria Australia. The Oxford Dictionary made no mention … Continue reading

Charlie’s Country

This is another Australian film from the wonderful Wales One World festival, starring a man  they describe as ‘legendary,’ actor David Gulpilil. Well, he’s the only famous aboriginal actor, so is well deserved, and says much about the industry. It is an incredibly powerful film about life in a native settlement near Darwin, focusing on an … Continue reading

The Turning

This  Australian film was recently premiered at the Melbourne International Film Festival and described as a ‘unique event’. It is an epic, made up of 18 stories based on Tim Winton’s short story collection of the same name. But it is more than turning words into visuals as each one was produced by a different … Continue reading

Russia and History

Russia and History

Amidst all the sabre rattling coming from Russia, claiming it is following its own history, it is worth remembering a few rather important moments from the past. Russia was one of the most backward countries in the Northern Hemisphere when Peter the Great became ruler. They had lots of natural resources, but they had no … Continue reading

A Lonely Grave

One of the great horror stories from the age of exploration is that of the Wreck of the Batavia, which is Australia’s most famous shipwreck. The Dutch East India ship foundered off the coast of West Australia and most of those on board survived, in 1629, but when some of the officers went off to … Continue reading

Aborigines And Cricket

This is a story I heard of a while ago and it still intrigues me. Almost 150 years ago, a team of Australian aborigines came to England for the first cricket tour. This is the subject of an exhibition at the British Musum later this year, called Indigenous Australia: Enduring Civilisation. The exhibition curator Dr … Continue reading