Patterns in grog terminology in Australian languages
David Nash

The paper surveys alcohol terminology in Australian languages, following previous continent-wide studies of particular loan concepts ('horse', 'musket', 'police').
The paper collates the evidence that there is no indigenous term for a fermented beverage which is not also that of the plant from which it was derived, and no indigenous term for a fermented beverage has been extended to cover any introduced alcoholic drinks. A number of terms have been borrowed from English (rum, grog). Common semantic extentions are from indigenous terms for 'sweet', 'salty', 'sea water', 'water', 'froth', and others; unusual ones are also discussed.
The polysemies show areal patterns, explainable partly historically, partly geographically. The evidence supports in part the "culture areas" of Peterson 1976.

Peterson, Nicolas. 1976. The natural and cultural areas of Aboriginal Australia: a preliminary analysis of population groupings with adaptive significance, Chapter 3, pp.50-71 in Tribes and Boundaries, ed. by Nicolas Peterson. (Social Anthropology Series No. 10) Canberra: AIAS / Atlantic Highlands: Humanities Press.

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