Community & Remembrance

Term 3

The importance of country & place

Aboriginal Language

Language is extreamely important to the Aboriginal peoples. Language carry curtural knowledge, so loss of a language means the loss of culture, of Aboriginal people's connections to their ancestors.

"The important thing about language and what it means is that language contains the essence of our ancestors, every word comes from place and identifies people and links to the land, country, the dreaming: they are all inhertent in language, therefore it means the people, the land, everything." Yolngu Elder Laurie Baymarrwangga

  • Explain the importance of language of the Aboriginal people in your own words.

Language is important to Aboriginal people because... it is thier culture they live with it and a long time ago Australia had lots of states/bits and lots of languages. It would make me feel left out on my culture and left out. I would be very destroyed left out and want to leave or even kill my self.

  • Use the interactive map to locate and identify the local lanuage group.


The local lanuage group for the Illawarra is Tharwal.

Aboriginal Pictures

Place Names

The Aboriginal name for Shellharbour has been recorded as both Yerrowah (meeting places), and Wonwin, (place where there were big fish). The Europeon name Shellharbour refers to the large quanititles of shells found in the Aboriginal middens along the foreshore in the early to the mid 19th century. Due to the mining of shells in the mid 19th century for the production of lime these vast middens no longer remain.