Searching language groups

How alternative spellings may impact your search

Searching for old documents that mention Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander language groups can be hard.

A variety in spelling can cause problems for people researching language groups as things can be filed under the spelling used rather than the modern common spelling accepted today.

For example, Gamilaraay, a Pama–Nyungan language of the Wiradhuric subgroup found mostly in south-east Australia has a number of alternative spelling used currently and historically including Camileroi, Gamilaroi, Kamilaroi, Yuwaalaraay, Wallarai (Austlang).

To see an example of how this affects Trove, the Gamilaraay Alternative Trove spelling list shows how word variations affect results:

Search for content in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Languages

1. In the Search box at the top of the Trove page, enter Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander language keyword/s to find items that may be in the language. You can also enter the name of an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander language to get results that may contain the language.


  • Enter tjukinya to find items with this keyword in Pitjantjatjara language
  • Enter Pitjantjatjara to find items that may have Pitjantjatjara language content

You can also enter English language keyword/s, and then use the language filter when you get a search results list.

2. Select the green magnifying glass button to begin the search. Trove will generate a list of results containing your keyword/s in each available category. 

3. Scroll down the list of category results. To see more results within a category, select the "See all...results" button at the bottom right of the category section.


Go directly to a category by selecting a tab above the search field.

4. If there are search results that are in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Languages, the filter will appear in the Refine Your Results menu on the right hand side of the screen:
Screenshot of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Language search filter

5. To see more languages, select the Show more link (you can minimise the list by selecting the Show less link).

6. Choose one or more languages by selecting the checkboxes next to them. To remove all selections, uncheck the language box/es or select Clear all underneath the search field.