The Antipodeans

The inhabitents of Australia and New Zealand were settled by people from the opposite side of the world.

More Antipodean

It is important to point out early in the piece that New Zealand is more Antipodean than Australia.

“How can you be more Antipodean?” you ask, “Surely you are Antipodean or not”.

It simply goes back to definitions.

Antipodeans are the poeples who live in the Antipodes.  The Antipodes is the place on earth most distant from England.  Here it is.  New Zealand is further from England than Australia and is therefore more opposite than Australia.

Both countries are in the South Pacific and are on opposite latitudes to the Old England, both are on opposite longatudes to Old England. On the face of it – apparently the same degree of being Antipodean.  However, it is on the issue of time that reveals which is the MOST opposite to Mother England.

So, we compare the difference to Greenwich Mean Time in the 2 Antipodean timezones.

Perth is GMT + 8, Brisbane is GMT + 10 and Auckland is GMT + 12.   Auckland is exactly opposite to London.

QED – New Zealand is more Antipodean.

Meet the Antipodeans!

Hi, I’m Bill, and I’m an Antipodean.

Sounds a bit like an admission from someone in the 12 steps program – but I’m not from a disadvantaged group and I’m certainly not acknowledging a weakness.

In fact, I think its pretty good being Antipodean and I’m in good company.   There are about 25 million of us and we see the world downside up.

The Antipodeans descend from those people who left their homelands in the Old World and journeyed far from kith and kin to Earth’s farthest flung corner.  That far flung corner in the South Pacific was dubbed the Antipodes, which  literally means the opposite foot.  

The Antipodes aptly named a New World of opposite extremes in terms of longitude,  in terms of latitude and even in terms of ante and post meridian.   East versus West, South versus North, Night versus Day.  We could not be on a more opposite footing.

Some became Antipodeans when they were ejected from an overcrowded Old World –  banished in chains – told never to return!!   They would only to be given their ticket leave from servitude, on condition they never again set foot in their homeland.  They came by force because they were thrown out.

Some became Antipodeans when they fled  wars, persecution , pain, entanglements, broken hearts and abject poverty.  They came by necessity in search of a better life.

Some became Antipodeans because they left the Old World with the passion and vision to create a New World.  They came of their own free will in search of opportunity and prosperity.

And some were already in the South Pacific  long before England had a need to empty jails, develop a new farm and find more natural resources.  They made their journeys to the Antipodes  in primitive canoes guided by the stars or across land-bridges that no longer exist.

This blog and this website are about the journeys, the research, the detective work that we undertake to find out who went before us, to the learn their stories, to uncover and celebrate their contribution in  making us who we are.

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