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Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 17, 1906.djvu/302

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NOTES IN REPLY TO MR. HOWITT AND MR. JEVONS.

BY A. LANG, M.A., LL.D., ETC.

In reply to Mr. Hovvitt's paper, I must express my sincere regret for having, as I am informed, misunderstood and misrepresented him.

I quote, from his Native Tribes of South East A tistralia, p. 500, the passage on which my difficulty hinged.

Mr. Howitt, after giving the geographical limits, as he knows them, in which the All Father belief prevails in South Eastern Australia, writes : " That part of Australia which I have indicated as the habitat of tribes having that belief" (I understand the belief in the All Father to be meant) "is also the area where there has been the advance from group marriage to individual marriage, from descent in the female line to that in the male Hne, where the primitive organisation under the class system has been more or less replaced by an organisation based on locality; in fact, where those advances have been made to which I have more than once drawn attention in this work."

When I read this passage, and I read it frequently, I understood Mr. Howitt to mean that the All Father belief " in that part of Australia " existed 07ily in the area where tribes have made both what he calls " the advance from group marriage to individual marriage," and also the advances from descent in the female to descent in the male line, and thence to local organisation. I ask the reader whether this was not a natural, if erroneous, inter- pretation } I am aware that I was not alone in accepting