S29: Wadawurrung

AIATSIS code: 
AIATSIS reference name: 


Thesaurus heading language
Thesaurus heading people
ABN name
Wathawurrung dialect (Previously Wada Wurung language)
ABS name
Horton name
Ethnologue name
ISO 639-3 code
Tindale name
Tindale (1974)
Wadthaurung, Waitowrung, Wudthaurung, Wod-dowrong, Waddorow, Wadawio, Wadourer, Woddowrong, Wollowurong, Woddowro, Wudjawuru, Witowurrung, Wothowurong, Watorrong, Witaoro (kuli = man), Wudja-wurung, Witowurung, Witowur(r)ong, Witowro, Witoura, Wadjawuru, Wuddyawurru, Wuddyawurra, Witouro, Witswrong (typographical error), Wittyawhuurong, Warra, Wardy-yallock (horde in Pitfield area), Borumbeet Bulluk (horde at Lake Burrambeet speaking a slight dialect), Bengali (horde near Geelong), Buninyong (place name, location of a northern horde).
O'Grady et al (1966)
Other sources
Wada wurrung, Watowrong, Wartorong, Wotowrong, Watourong, Wat-r-ong, Woddow-row, Wad-thou-rong, Waddow ro, Waddow, Wattowrong, Wattouerong, Wadthowrong, Wadthourong, Wadourong, Watouring, Waturong, Witowrong, Wadawerang, Wad.dow.wer.rer, Wartarang (mistranscription), Wartowerang, Wartowerong, Wartow werang, War.tow.wer.rong, Waterwrong, Wortowerong, Watawerong, Woolowrong, Wor-tow.wer.ong, Wor.tow.erong, Wad-dow-wer-rer, Wad dow wer rong, Wod.dow.wer.rong, Watowerong, Waddowerong, Wad-dowerong, Waddowerang, Wadong, Wadoung, Wadouro, Wadowrong, Wot-tow-rong, Witourong, Wadower, Witswrong, Wadowio, Wodowro, Widowra, Widoura, Wadowro, Wadoora, Witaoro, Waddorow, Wawtowerang, Wartowong, Wotowerong, Watowerong (Geelong nation), Woodowrow, Wodourow, Wodowo or Geelong, Geelong Bay tribe, Witowurrong, Geelong tribe, Woddowrong or Corio natives, Witouro, Wiitya whuurong, Wot-tow-rong, Djilong (Geelong), Wod-dow-ro, Watorrong, Witowro, Wuddyawurra, Wathaurung, Wudhurung, Wudhau'rung, Wudhauwurung, Wadthawurung, Watchaora (not Wood-thau-rang according to Woiwurung speakers), Wuddiau rung, Wudthawurung, Witowurung, Wud tha wrung, Wuddyawea, Wuddyawurru, Woddowro, Wudtharung, Wodowrong, Wito-wu-rrong, Witoura, Wudjawurung, Waitowrung, Wataurun, Wudja:wuru, Wudjawuwu, Woodowro, Wudjawuru, Wothowurong, Wataurung, Woddowerong, Wathaurung, Wadthaurung, Wadourer, Wollowurong, Woodcole tribe, Wadjawuru (Wadhawurung), Widouro, Watha wurrung, Wudtharung, Waltaurun, Wudjawurong, Witowurong, Wuddjawurro, Woithurong (mistranscription), Wudthaurun, Woltrowurong, Watdjurang, Wathourung, Wadiwid, Wadawrang, Wateran, Water-ang, Watowerang, Wadthaurang, Wadawio, Woddoro, Wotherwurong, Wittowurrung, Witaioro, Wad-ja-wurru, Wud-ja-warra, Wadja-wurrung, Witherwerong, Wittoro, Wad-dow-er-er, Witoura, Wit-ya-whaurung, Wada wurung Clark 1990:309] Wathawurrung [Clark 2005 and VACL] Wathaurong [VACL map]
Wadha wurrung, Wuddyawurru, Witouro, Kurung, Wadawurung, Wataurung, Bengali, Borumbeet Bulluk, Buniyong, Wada wurung, Wada wurrung, Wadawio, Waddorow, Waddowro, Wadjawuru, Wadourer, Wadthaurung, Waitowrung, Wardy yallock, Warra, Wathaurang, Wathaurung, Wathurung, Watorrong, Wiityahuurong, Witaoro, Witawurong, Witoura, Witowro, Witowurong, Witowurrong, Witowurrung, Witowurung, Witswrong, Wittyawhuurong, Woddowro, Woddowrong, Wollowurong, Woodowro, Wothowurong, Wuddyawurra, Wudja:wuru, Wudjawuru, Wudjawurung, Wudthaurung, Wadhurung, Wathawurung, Watowrong, Wartorong, Wotowrong, Watourong, Wat r ong, Woddow row, Wad thou rong, Waddow ro, Waddow, Wattowrong, Wattouerong, Wadthowrong, Wadthourong, Wadourong, Watouring, Waturong, Witowrong, Wadawerang, Waddowwerrer, dowwerrer, wer, rer, Wartarang, Wartowerang, Wartowerong, Wartow werang, Wartowrong, tow, rong, Waterwrong, Wortowerong, Watawerong, Woolowrong, Wor tow ong, Worerong, Wad dow wer rer, Wad dow wer rong, Wod, Watowerong, Waddowerong, Wad dowerong, Waddowerang, Wadong, Wadoung, Wadouro, Wadowrong, Wot tow rong, Witourong, Wadower, Wadowio, Wodowro, Widowra, Widoura, Wadowro, Wadoora, Wawtowerang, Wartowong, Wotowerong, Woodowrow, Wodourow, Wodowo, Geelong, Geelong Bay tribe, Geelong tribe, Corio natives, Wiitya whuurong, Djilong, Wod dow ro, Wudhurung, Wudhaurung, Wudhauwurung, Wadthawurung, Watchaora, Wuddiau rung, Wudthawurung, Wud tha wrung, Wuddyawea, Wudtharung, Wodowrong, Wito wu rrong, Wataurun, Wudjawuwu, Woddowerong, Woodcole tribe, Widouro, Watha wurrung, Waltaurun, Wudjawurong, Wuddjawurro, Woithurong, Wudthaurun, Woltrowurong, Watdjurang, Wathourung, Wadawurrung , Wadiwid, Wadawrang, Wateran, Water ang, Watowerang, Wadthaurang, Woddoro, Wotherwurong, Wittowurrung, Witaioro, Wad ja wurru, Wud ja warra, Wadja wurrung, Witherwerong, Wittoro, Wad dow er er, Wit ya whaurung, Wada wurung Clark 1990:309] Wathawurrung, Wod dowrong, Wudja wurung, Buninyong, Wathawurrung, Wadawurrung, Wathaurong

While Watha wurrung (S29) is genetically related to 'Daung wurrung S37, Boon wurrung S35, Woi wurrung S36, Djab wurrung S26, Djadja wurrung S31.1, and other "Kulin" dialects', it has diverged so much that it might be considered a separate language (Dixon in Clarke 1996:17).


  • Blake, Barry. 1988. Wathawurrung: the language of the Geelong-Ballarat area. In Wathawurrung and the Colac language of southern Victoria, ed. B. J. Blake. Canberra: Pacific Linguistics.
  • Clark, Ian. 1996. Aboriginal language areas in Victoria: a reconstruction. Melbourne: Victorian Aboriginal Corporation for Languages.
  • Pascoe, Bruce. 2003. Wathaurong: the people who said no. North Geelong, Vic: Wathaurong Aboriginal Co-Operative. (B P281.14/W2)
  • Scarlett, N.H. 1977. The Aborigines of the Otway region. Proceedings of the Royal Society of Victoria, vol. 89, no. 1/2, pp. 1-5. (p CLA)
State / Territory: 
Location information: 

... from the coast around Geelong inland to include Beaufort and Ballarat (Blake 1988:59). ... south of Geelong toward Lorne, north toward Ballarat and then south east to the Werribee River (Pascoe 2003:19). ... between the Werribee River, Mt Emu, the northern shores of Lake Corangamite and Birregurra, including the coast east of Cape Otway (Scarlett 1977:2).


Wathaurong Aboriginal Co-operative has been running since March 1998. The program produced a language learning CD-rom in 2005.

Barry Blake, Wathaurong Aboriginal Cooperative
Indigenous organisations: 
Year Source Speaker numbers

Speaker numbers were measured differently across the censuses and various other sources listed in AUSTLANG. You are encouraged to refer to the sources.

Speaker numbers for ‘NILS 2004’ and ‘2005 estimate’ come from 'Table F.3: Numbers of speakers of Australian Indigenous languages (various surveys)' in 'Appendix F NILS endangerment and absolute number results' in McConvell, Marmion and McNicol 2005, pages 198-230 (PDF, 2.5MB).

Type Documentation Status Documentation Score
Word list Small (20-100 pages) 2
Text Collection None 0
Grammar Sketch grammar (less than 100 pages) 2
Audio-visual None 0
Manuscript note: 
tape transcription/field note available (vocabulary) -unclear status

Blake, Barry J. 1988 Wathawurrung: the language of the Geelong-Ballarat area. In B Blake, Wathawurrung and the Colac language of southern Victoria: Pacific Linguistics C-147. Canberra: Pacific Linguistics.


Blake, Barry J. 1988 Wathawurrung: the language of the Geelong-Ballarat area. In B Blake, Wathawurrung and the Colac language of southern Victoria: Pacific Linguistics C-147. Canberra: Pacific Linguistics.

Source Family Group Sub-group Name Relationship
Ethnologue (2005)          
Dixon (2002)   WEST VICTORIAN AREAL GROUP Kulin subgroup* Wadha-wurrung (or Wuddyawurru or Witouro, etc.) Wadha-wurrung (or Wuddyawurru or Witouro, etc.) Blake (1998)
Wurm (1994) Pama-Nyungan Kulinic   Wathawurung  
Walsh (1981) Pama-Nyungan Kulinic Kulin Wathawurung  
Oates (1975) Pama-Nyungan Kulinic Kulin Wadhurung  
Wurm (1972) Pama-Nyungan Kulinic Kulin Wudjawuru  
O'Grady, Voegelin and Voegelin (1966) Pama-Nyungan Kulinic Kulin Wudjawuru