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Relationship Between Macassan Fishermen and Aboriginal People of Northern Australia


Makassar people have been an extensive part of the Sulawesi (which belongs to Indonesia) thathas beenextensively covered alongside of the coast of northern Australia during the 1700s across the Kimberley region. Further, the problem arises of how since the decades later in the Arnhem Land, there were men who have collected, processed trepang (depending on the sea cucumber), which was the marine invertebrate sea cucumber that has helped in the culinary value and for the world, it has helped in providing a medicinal properties item (Cook, 2019).

The relation between the Aboriginal and the Makassar people with a dependency is due to sharing common commodity trepangers which has been origin and discoverable item within the Australia. Further the due to the Indonesian Archipelago, the common share and beliefs has been shared across partto theTimor, Rote, and Aru (James, 2019). The role was to develop relationship with the Yolngu people that can be interpreted to the language, that can relate with the stories which can be based on the that can be circulated the two groups that can be based on the that would be racial judgment having ano race policy (Golby, 2019).

History of Relationship

To understand the Makassar, now Ujungpandang, who have further establish themselves across the southwest of Celebes which is now called as theSulawesi. When establishing across the north of Australia the main aim of Makassar was to fish for the trepang - sea cucumber, which can further help to trade and do business along with the Aboriginal People. Further both set of people and groups have even opened up and shared common beliefs and have combined the common language, art, economy, and genetics that works across the northern Aboriginal People. It has been helpful to note how there has been equatingsides that can represent the Arafura and Banda Seas (Loaney, 2019).

Makassar has alsopositioned themselves as the Marege and it is one of the social group identified in the Australia having certain rights. Due to the origin of thetrepang trade has helped to establish business that worked across the 1720 and has worked till1400. The voyagers who would beKimberleys to Mornington Island has further helped to develop the relation that has been built across theGulf of Carpentaria. Trade dropped off towards that would include the 19th century on account of the duties imposition which has worked across the Australian government. The role of the prauhas left Arnhem Land in 1906. During the1803, Mathew Flinders has discovered about the island and its uniqueness, such as the Macassan trading fleet identified as the Nhulunbuy across the circumnavigation of Australia. Moreover thesettlements was observed to be close near to theplaces across the Melville Island and the Coburg Peninsula (Lilley, 2019).

The trepang gathering fleets was used alongside with the Macassarevery year alongside the Chinese trades in Macassarand further covering thetrepang to China. The benefits of the trepan was to use it in the soup and it was the aphrodisiac with the meditational values..Due to the use of the trepang which was used by theMakassar which was traded through theport Essington, Groote Eylandt, and Snuru Bay along with the other herbs, trading and with the tamarind trees that has resulted in the Macassansto expand trading system. The Macassans also expanded with the trepang processing plants and it was the main reason to survive and grow during the 18 & 19th centuries. The use of thetrepangwas also used in the phases ofboiling, gutting, recooking with mangrove bark and through the use of the additional flavor and color can use it through dryingit and using it in the smoking (Russell, 2019).

Even the eating style of the sausages was to cook it on the mud or chimney'. Subsequently theMacassanwere also in touch with the aboriginals who belong to the northpart having a profound effects over the cultures. The trade purposes started to collaborate both the Macassans and ABorginals to start exchanging some of the historical key facts, songs, and further, understand the dances along with the paintings on rock and bark. The length processing that would be the coast and the dependent the camps set up that can further be connected to theMacassansand how it can be interpreted to the boiling-down cauldrons, further be analyzed in terms of the smokehouses and wells. It evolved with the camps that have worked across the channels around the coast of the Kimberleys along with the Arnhem Land.

To understand how to build relation with the broken pottery and how it would be devised with the glass and stands and the term can be related to that tamarind trees, which would be seeds dropped through the Macassansthat would further eat the astringent fruit. Through the understanding of theMacassan camps who would be the situation and would be represented with the given defended and the small islands or promontories. The would need that would be determined to protect themselves and that can be accessed aggression that would be Aboriginal that would be determined massacres the crews thepraus (Russell, 2019).

Trading History

As the role of the Macassans was to exchange goods which included the knives, tobacco, cloth, and the relation the rice and alcohol, which can be right to fish for trepang, that can be accessed collected at low tide and collaborated with theAboriginal people. The reason for the collaboration and expansion was due to trepang and how to use it during the praus (boats) or dived down to spike them with weighted harpoons For example, Yolngu communities who have entered within the land with the purpose of the ocean fishing and also to trade thedugong and turtles. The relationship of the Macassan was to explore the sea hunt for the new discovered things and for the trading purposessuch ascanoes and the use of thebark canoe.

Subsequently, Aboriginal people along with Macassans relation to returning voyages that can be interpreted with the abductions along with the trading of Yolngu young women and depending on the introduction smallpox. It was challenging how there can be a Macassan pidgin that would further interpret the lingua franca that can connect the north coast, which is related to both the Aboriginal People along with the Macassans which can Aboriginals which can result in the different language, which has been interpreted to devise the closer contact. To further understand how theMacassan sea-going culture and how some Macassan words which can be related to Aboriginal languages and move side to the north coast, that can be interpreted the rupiah=money, jama=work, balanda=white person, and would the Macassan language "Hollander" (Russell, 2019).

The relation of Macassanpraushave experienced with the 25 tonnes, which would further seagoing dugout canoes which would include the fishing. Even though theBaiini,would have not bough their women (Smith, 2019). The fleets of praus were comprised of 30 - 60 boats, each with about 30 crew, staying in Australia over the Wet Season, in December, and returning to the Makassar about 4 or 5 months later. Further to access the visitors it is important to understand how there can be a key reference that would be obligated and would be based onMacassans, which can help to link and relate with the number of different groups that have been actively been trading and fishing for trepang, that are aligned with the distinctive praus (Spencer, 2019).

Further, the group trading would focus on the north coast and it is important to access the Bugis, and it can help to access the Sulawesi. The Aboriginal People would have to interpret as to how there can be a prau design that is sorted with the given different groups, the Bugisprauswould have to present the work based on eye painted and further to relate with thebow of the Macassanpraus pointed up. Further to access and to understand how there can be songs and stories that would further cover thepraus, and this further includes the rigging, the sails, including the wind in the sails. Further to understand how the role of the Aboriginal People plays a vital role and what kind can be the Gumatj clan that can help to examine theYirrkala, who have been the first contract that works per the Macassanswho have been recorded.

As per the views, of the Aboriginal People and how it can be related toMacassanswhere one can access the 2 praus approaching Port Bradshaw. Depending on the scattered further inland, often the problem has been how there were things that can be identified in relation to the thick vegetation (Spencer, 2019). To relate with the northern coast of Australia, and interpreted as how there can be Macassans traded who would further be correlated to the local people that have arrived with the first encounters.

During the first course of 1700 until 1907, there have been fishermen sailed that have eventually worked with the Makassar and there has been an island of Sulawesi (now Indonesia) that has covered the northern Australian coast, that is part of the ‘Marege’. To understand how there can be fishermen who have been camped and further it has arisen alongside within the Arnhem Land coast that would be catching, boiling and it would also lead to the drying trepang. It has traded and worked which can help in interpreting the local Aboriginal people. The role of the Makasar has also helped in spending inline during the harvesting alongside to the coastal waters which can further cover across access the northern Australia. Fishermen (Stacey, 2019).

Yolŋu Society and Ritual

The Makasar who have not settled in the Arnhem Land would further belong to influence on Yolŋu society along with having the given ritual. It is important to understand how there can be calico, tobacco along with the smoking pipes and it can help to access the use today, like rupiah (money) (Stacey, 2019). To understand how there can be technology item which would result in the transformed Yolŋu life which can be estimated metal, metal blades, knives along with the axes which would result in the everyday practices easier for Yolŋu, that can be represented in terms cutting food which would cause the large dugout canoes along with the complex wooden sculptures.

Dried Trepang

In China, trepangis used for the aphrodisiac, the fleet from Makassar that would be Arnhem Land year, but would be understood the supplying about 900 tons of trepang and how there can be one-third depending on the Chinese demand. Further, there has been a Makasar to northern Australia which can be interpreted that can result in the trepang were declining (van Gelderen, 2019). To understand 1901 that would be understood that can check the Australian Government banned trepangers and the Makassar that can be estimated with the protect Australia’s ‘territorial integrity’ and can result in the local trepang industry. In 1907 further result that can result in terms of the last prau from Makassar who has visited that can Arnhem Land (Young, 2019).


In the end, the relation existing in between the Macassan fishermen and the Aboriginal communities has been based on the common values, beliefs, due to the mutual trust and respect. Subsequently, the role of the Makassar was initiated with the bond formed with the Aboriginal that can be based on the significant effect that can understand the latter culture, which can be based on the cross-cultural influences. As the prime reason of the Macassan visiting the northern Australian waters every year was the collection of trepang (teripang in Indonesian), includes the edible holothurians and furthers the bêche-de-mer or sea slugs which was shared by the aboriginal people. Further the role of the Macassan fishermen has been to spread belief of the Islamic that has further strengthened the relation with the Aboriginal and Indonesians. The relation of the Macassan appears to have presented a description which can help "aboriginal to further develop relation which has proven to be exploited and developed further.


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James, B. (2019). Fish Traps of the Crocodile Islands. At Home on the Waves: Human Habitation of the Sea from the Mesolithic to Today, 24, 174.

Golby, J. (2019). East Arnhem land and the Garma festival 2019. Planning News, 45(11), 8.

Guthadjaka, K. G., & van Gelderen, B. (2019). Designing the Warramiri website: a bala-räli both ways duoethnography from the Yolηu homeland of Gäwa. Australian Aboriginal Studies, (1).

Loaney, D. R. (2019, June). Australian Indigenous Art Innovation and Culturepreneurship in Practice: Insights for Cultural Tourism. In Arts (Vol. 8, No. 2, p. 50).Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute.

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Spencer, M., Dányi, E., & Hayashi, Y. (2019). Asymmetries and Climate Futures: Working with Waters in an Indigenous Australian Settlement. Science, Technology, & Human Values, 44(5), 786-813.

Stacey, N., & Allison, E. H. (2019).Sea Nomads. At Home on the Waves: Human Habitation of the Sea from the Mesolithic to Today, 24, 309.

vanGelderen, B., &Guthadjaka, K. (2019). 'YutaGonydjuy': The'newwax'WarramiriYolnju parable as transculturation literature and'Lonydju'yirrliteracy'at'Gawa'. English in Australia, 54(1), 30.

Young, S. (2019). The Increments of Justice: Exploring the Outer Reach of Akiba's Edge towards Native Title Ownership. UNSWLJ, 42, 825.

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