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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 6

Vegetables Used for Food by the Aborigines

Vegetables Used for Food by the Aborigines.

Two collections occur in the Exhibition—one illustrating the alimentary substances obtained from plants by the natives in the more northern parts of Queensland. This collection owes its existence almost entirely to the strenuous efforts made by M. Thozet to obtain information on the subject, whose elaborate detailed remarks are appended. In cases of emergency even travellers might derive great advantage from the information thus brought together through that gentleman's intelligent assiduity.

The second collection was forwarded by E. M. Officer, Esq., on the Wim-mera River. It comprises the following kinds:—Roots of Arthropodium setosum, F. M.; (Dichopogon setosus Kunth); Arthropodium laxum, Sieb.; Geranium dissectum, L.; Convolvulus erubescens, Sims; Prasophyllum patens, R. Br.; Anthericum bulbosum, R. Br.; Rumex bidensy R. Br.; Microseris Forsteri, J. Hook.; Scirpus maritimus, L.; Typha augustifolia, L.; Triglo-chin procerum R. Br.; Lyperanthus nigricans, R. Br.; Sieber a ericoides, Benth.; Diuris palustris, Lindl.; youug roots of Xanthorrhcea Australis; flowers (rich in mellaginous sap) of Banksia ornata, F.M.; fruits of Styphelia adscendens, R. Br.

There are very many other substances used as edibles by the aboriginals, page 43 but on this occasion only those could come under review which were in reality sent to the Exhibition. The laudable example set to elucidate this subject should be followed up in other parts of Australia before the aboriginal population passes away.