Food and other Ngadjonji uses of Rainforest Plants and Animals

Ngadjonji Use of
Fire

The Ngadjonji were highly skilled at quickly making fire (buni) and the hearth fire, used for cooking, light and warmth, was at the centre of Ngadjonji daily life.

Firemaking
Photo from the collection of A.Nye
Fire was made using firesticks. A straight stick of hardwood (preferably jiman) was rapidly twirled between the hands while its end was pressed into a hollow in a flat piece of softwood (usually jaanggany) held on the ground. The friction between the two firesticks caused a bunch of dry grass or other tinder material, laid around the tip of the twirling stick, to begin to smoulder. The tinder was then blown into flame.

This picture shows two boys making fire in the traditional way. The older boy is rapidly twirling the firestick while the younger is blowing to bring the fire to life.

Cooking was done in different ways according to what was being cooked:


Flaming torches, made from sticks of the very flammable jidu, were used for night fishing and at other times when light was needed away from the campfires.

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