Queensland’s famous sandy Fraser Island on Australia’s east coast, roughly 200 kilometers north of Brisbane, has returned its old name.
On Wednesday 7 June, the traditional name of the island was officially reinstated, and henceforth it will be called K’gari.
In 1992, the island was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is a popular tourist destination, he writes. Large Norwegian Encyclopedia (SNL). K’gari has half of the world’s freshwater lakes.
According to the British Watchman Pronounced ‘gurri’, the name means ‘heaven’ in the local Aboriginal language Butchulla.
Queensland Governor Anastasia Palaszczuk says she is proud to finally be able to bring back the name, which has been used colloquially by the island’s Aboriginal people for 60,000 years.
– K’gari comes from the story of the creation of the island by the Bochula people, and has been passed down orally for generations. I am proud that today we can officially welcome Kajari home,” the governor said during the ceremony, according to The Australian. News.
She also mentioned that the name K’gari disappeared due to the disrespect of the indigenous people.
– While this move cannot change the injustices of the past, we can now build a future that everyone in Queensland values, respects and trusts, said Palaszczuk.
“savages” and “cannibals”
The island was originally known as Great Sandy Island to Europeans, before it was called Fraser Island in the 19th century.
The change came after the Scottish ship Eliza Fraser sank there in the 1830s.
The name has since been seen as inappropriate, as Eliza Fraser is said to have referred to the Bochula people as “savages” and “cannibals” and that she was held captive after the drowning.
According to The Guardian, Eliza Fraser’s supposed lie was to have spread throughout the English colony, despite the fact that the woman’s statement was contradicted by other survivors of the shipwreck.
European colonization in the 1840s destroyed the livelihoods of the indigenous Bochula people, who today have the right to hunt and fish on the island, SNL writes.
Corrects a historical error
Bochulla Aboriginal Corporation director Gayle Menicon said the new amendment corrects a historical wrong.
– Fortunately, Kgari was redeemed by the respect of the people of Bochula. Our oral history and creation story will now be properly told and taught.
K’gari is a narrow island 122 kilometers long and 25 kilometers wide at its widest point. With a population of 182, the island is the largest sand island in the world — which also has rich flora and fauna, with tropical rainforests growing on the sand, eucalyptus forests, mangrove forests, peat bogs, and sand dunes, according to SNL.
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