Banjo Paterson


A picture of the author Banjo Paterson

An Australian poet, journalist and writer Andrew Barton "Banjo" Paterson, (1864 - 1941) focused his work on the rural and outback areas around New South Wales capturing both the peculiarities and charms of people and places he wrote about.

He is famous for his folksong Waltzing Matilda and his poems The Man from Snowy River and Clancy of the Overflow.

Unofficially considered Australia's "official" national song, Waltzing Matilda (1895), is not about dancing with a pretty girl named Matilda. Once the vernacular is stripped away and the words are understood, the song tells the tale of a migrant worker, making some tea at a bush camp. When a sheep comes to drink from "billabong" or watering hole, he nabs the sheep to eat. When owner of the sheep arrives with three policemen to arrest him, he drowns himself in the billabong leaving his ghost to haunt the site.

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