About word “kangaroo” for a long time there was an entertaining legend. Like, the famous seafarer James Cook arrived in Australia and saw there outlandish animals, moving with huge leaps. Surprised Cook turned to the aborigine with the question of what is called this amazing beast.
A native who did not know English, in response, said: “I do not understand”, which, according to this myth, sounded like “gangaroo.” Cook took his cue for the name of the animal, which has since been called no other than kangaroo (“kangaroo” in English).
In another version of the same legend in place of Cook turns out to be Lord Joseph Banks, one of the expedition members. In a word, the testimonies diverge.
The complete failure of this funny story was proved by linguists. In fact, the word “kangaroo” (or “gangaroo”) comes from the language of the Australian tribe guugu-yimithirr, they say. (It is worth noting that in the eighteenth century, there were about 700 native tribes in Australia, and they spoke in 250 languages and dialects.) Guugu-yimithirr lived in the area of the Botanical Gulf of the Tasman Sea, which washes the eastern shore of Australia.