- a member of a family of large marsupials with strong hind legs for hopping, mainly found in Australia.
Etymology: From Guugu Yimidhirr gangurru, recorded by w:James Cook, James Cook and others in 1770 at w:Endeavour River, Endeavour River; in English, applied to the whole family of macropods, apparently from not realizing the Guugu Yimidhirr word referred to just one species.In 1820 w:Phillip King, Phillip King visited the area and could not confirm Cook"s record; some then suggested that Cook and Banks had erred. This is apparently the basis for the long-standing myth that Cook is supposed to have asked a native "What is that?" to which the reply "kangaroo", supposedly meaning "I don"t know", was given. Though amusing, this is not the case. John Haviland studied Guugu Yimidhirr extensively in 1972, confirming gangurru and concluding King had been told minha.References, 1
- 1770: Besides the Animals which I have before mentioned, called by the Natives Kangooroo, or Kanguru ... — w:James Cook, James Cook, Captain Cook"s Journal During the First Voyage Round the World, description of Endeavour River, at 4 August 1770 http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/8106
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