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Indigenous Australians And The British Settlers

909 words - 4 pages

Archaeological evidence suggests that human first occupied Australia (fig. 1) approximately 50000 years ago. (Dorey, 2011) Early ‘modern humans’ (homo sapiens) are believed to have migrated from the Asian continent to Australia using land bridges (fig. 2) (, n.d.) Shortly after arriving in Australia it is thought that they (now known as Indigenous Australians) moved inland and rapidly spread throughout the country using the river systems of Queensland and Southern Australia. (Mayell, 2003) The Indigenous people began to appreciate the land and the resources that it offered. Their culture developed many spiritual relationships with the land and its natural resources; it was ...view middle of the document...

The indigenous people believe that ‘the land must be used if life is to continue’ and this is reflected in the amount of tribes and communities throughout Australia.

Prior to 1788 it is thought that there were in excess of 700 languages spoken throughout Australia and approximately 750000 people who populated it. (Mooney, 2013) Today only 2.4% (Villanueva Siasoco, 2012) of the ‘23 427 098’ people who live in Australia are indigenous. The population density of the indigenous Australians was incredibly low because of the small amount of people that called Australia home. The tribes and communities that spread throughout Australia were mostly permanent meaning that most of the hunting, gathering and worship activities that were undertaken usually took place in their own boundaries. There were approximately 500 different tribes (Fig. 3) or communities throughout Australia prior to 1788. Things began to change in 1788 when the European settlers arrived in Botany Bay.

British soldiers arrived in Botany Bay in 1788 after they were deployed from Britain in 1787 with a ship full of convicts. Britain prisons were becoming insufficient for the amount of prisoners that they needed to cater for. However, Botany Bay proved to a disappointment to the British. Instead Captain Arthur Phillip commissioned another voyage to investigate Port Jackson, which upon arrival was said to be the most beautiful port in the world. (Anderson, n.d.) For the British colonisers there was one main push and pull factor. The overcrowded prisons in Britain were a push factor and the vast expanse of arable land was a pull factor towards Australia. The British viewed the land as ‘a most valuable acquisition to...

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