Recorded accounts of meteoritic events in the oral traditions of Indigenous Australians

Duane Willis Hamacher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


Descriptions of natural events, such as fireballs and meteorite impacts, are found within Indigenous Australian oral traditions. Studies of oral traditions demonstrate that they extend beyond the realm of myth and legend; they contain structured knowledge about the natural world (science) as well as historic accounts of natural events and geo-hazards. These traditions could lead to the discovery of meteorites and impact sites previously unknown to Western science. In addition to benefiting the scientific study of meteoritics, this study can help social scientists better understand the nature and longevity of oral traditions and further support the growing body of evidence that oral traditions contain historical accounts of natural events. In a previous study led by the author in 2009, no meteorite- related oral traditions were identified that led to the discovery of meteorites and/or impact craters. This article challenges those initial findings.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)99-111
Number of pages13
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes

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