Tindale's Catalogue of Australian Aboriginal Tribes
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Ngaiawang (SA)
LocationAlong Murray River from Herman Landing to Penn Reach; west to scarp of Mount Lofty Ranges. Devon Downs Rock-shelter, Ngautngaut, was at their southern boundary, a place where eastern visitors, especially the Ngarkat, came during dry times to get water from the Murray River. Eyre (1846) encountered them at Lake Bonney; about ten hordes are known, including Molo, not previously recognized. Moorhouse and Ewens carried the southern limits of the tribe too far downstream leaving no room for the Nganguruku; this tribe is one of the group of smaller tribes along the lower Murray River known to early settlers as Meru. For these Mathews (1898) proposed the artificial 'nation' term Narrinyeri originally used in a different sense by Taplin. Richardson gave a name Yokka-yokka for natives at North West Bend but his placings are open to doubt. This name in the form Jakojako applies better to the Danggali who also only visited the river during periods of major drought.
Co-ordinates139°35'E x 34°15'S
Area2,400 sq. m. (6,200 sq. km.)
ReferencesEyre, 1845; Moorhouse, 1846; Taplin, 1873; Lewis, 1873-1875; Ewens in Taplin, 1879; Fulford in Curr, 1886; East, 1889; Mathews, 1898 (Gr. 6464); Tindale in Parkhouse, 1935; Tindale, 1939, 1940 and MS; Boehm, 1939.
Alternative NamesNgaijawa (valid alternative), Ngaiyawa, Ngaiawung, Ngaiyau, Naiawu (language name), Niawoo, Aiawung, Aiawong (said to be language name, Eyre was tone deaf to initial ng sound). Iawung, Nggauaiyo-wangko, Wakanuwan (name applied by the Jarildekald to this, the Nganguruku, and other tribes; they called the language Walkalde), Karn-brikolenbola (horde at Moorunde), Birta (Kaurna and Ngadjuri term), Pijita, Pitta, Pieta, Peeita, Meru (term for man), Murundi (term used for the Murray River, upriver from Lake Alexandrina in the Jarildekald language, also a given place name south of Blanchetown), Moorunde, Moorundee, Moorundie, Paruru (a derisive term meaning 'uncircumcised' also 'animal,' used by the Kaurna tribe for these and other Murray River tribespeople who do not circumcise).
This information is reproduced from NB Tindale's Aboriginal Tribes of Australia (1974). Please be aware that much of the data relating to Aboriginal language group distribution and definition has undergone revision since 1974. Please note also that this catalogue represents Tindale's attempt to depict Aboriginal tribal distribution at the time of European contact.

Collection AA290 Harold Llewellyn Sheard

Collection AA338 Norman Barnett Tindale

Collection AA346 Board for Anthropological Research

Collection AA383 Thomas Worsnop

Collection AA52 Thomas Draper Campbell

Collection AA676 Marjorie Alice Angas

Collection AA689 Joseph Benjamin Birdsell