A Burning Continent

  • Geoffrey Blainey


The eagerness with which aboriginals set fire to the country was noticed by the first Europeans who visited the south-east of the continent. Even when their ships lay well out to sea they saw the smoke and recorded it in their journals. What the smoke signified they could not at first tell. Perhaps it was the inhabitants’ way of signalling; perhaps they were cooking a large breakfast; perhaps the smoke came from fires started by lightning. Certainly storms started some fires, but if all the fires had been ignited by a flash of lightning then this must have been the most thunderous region in the whole Pacific.


Flame Spread Small Fire Smoking Fire Iron Pyrite Smoke Signal 
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Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1975

Authors and Affiliations

  • Geoffrey Blainey

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