Where do the names for animals and things come from? Someone at some stage made a decision: we’re going to call this animal a platypus. Actually is was during the late 18th century: from Greek platupous ‘flatfooted,’ from platus ‘flat’ + pous ‘foot.’

So being that it’s an Australian animal, what was it called in Aboriginal Languages?

Many of the languages along the coast of NSW were lost when Aboriginal people were punished and even gaoled for speaking their own languages in the Missions. 

So much so that the Elders wouldn’t teach it to their children for fear of what may happen to them if they were caught speaking it. Even today some Elders are scared to learn their own language.

The Dhanggati language is one that has miraculously survived through a stroke of good luck or cruel irony.

Please click here to read the full article on ABC Open What’s your story? website.