Gamilaraay project

Gamilaraay (also spelled Kamilaroi) is an Australian Aboriginal language traditionally spoken in the north-west of New South Wales from the Upper Hunter River valley to the Namoi River near the border with Queensland. It is closely related to Yuwaalaraay (our Eularoi) and Yuwaalayaay, traditionally spoken to its west.

Approximate location of Gamilaraay and related languages (from

I have been studying this language and its culture since my first fieldwork in Tamworth, Moree, and Boggabilla in April 1972, when I was an undergraduate student at the Australian National University. I carried out further fieldwork in 1973, and have continued to do research and publish on it up to today. Here are some available publications and websites (click on the links to visit or download them):

  • Austin, Peter, Corinne Williams & Stephen A. Wurm. 1980. The linguistic situation in north central New South Wales. In Bruce Rigsby & Peter Sutton (eds.) Papers in Australian linguistics No. 13: Contributions of Australian linguistics, 167-180. Canberra: Pacific Linguistics. link
  • Austin, Peter. 1986. Structural change in language obsolescence: some eastern Australian examples. Australian Journal of Linguistics 6(2), 201-230.
  • Austin, Peter & Norman B. Tindale. 1986. Emu and brolga, a Kamilaroi myth. Aboriginal History 9, 8-21. link
  • Austin, Peter. 1993. A Dictionary of Gamilaraay, northern New South Wales. Melbourne: La Trobe University.
  • Austin, Peter. 1993. A Reference Dictionary of Gamilaraay, northern New South Wales. Melbourne: La Trobe University.
  • Austin, Peter K. 1993. A Reference Grammar of Gamilaraay, northern New South Wales. link
  • Austin, Peter K. 1997. Proto-central New South Wales. In Darrel Tryon & Michael Walsh (eds.) Boundary rider: Essays in honour of Geoffrey O’Grady, 21-49. Canberra: Pacific Linguistics C-136. download
  • Austin, Peter K. and David Nathan. 1998. Kamilaroi/Gamilaraay Web Dictionary. link
  • Austin, Peter K. 2006. Gamilaraay. In Keith Brown (ed.) International Encyclopedia of Language and Linguistics, 724-727. 2nd edition. Elsevier.
  • Austin, Peter K. 2008. The Gamilaraay (Kamilaroi) Language, northern New South Wales — A Brief History of Research. In William McGregor (ed.) Encountering Aboriginal languages: studies in the history of Australian linguistics, 37-58. Canberra: Pacific Linguistics. link

For other materials on Gamilaraay-Yuwaalaraay-Yuwaalayaay please visit this website. There is also this Facebook page.

The languages are now taught in schools across northern New South Wales, as well as at the University of Sydney and the Australian National University.