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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.

Gooseberry, widow of King Bungaree

1836
William Fernyhough

lithograph on paper (sheet: 26.3 cm x 18.9 cm)

Cora Gooseberry (c. 1777–1852) was born Car-oo or Kaaroo, the daughter of Moorooboora, leader of the Murro-Ore (Pathway Place) clan. She originated from the Long-Bay/Maroubra area. Known to Europeans as ‘Queen Gooseberry’ or ‘Cora Gooseberry’, she was, like her husband Bungaree, one of the best known Aboriginal people in Sydney, becoming something of an identity for the government issue blanket she typically wore over her clothes and around her body. She also covered her hair with a headscarf and smoked a clay pipe. She was a member of the ‘Sydney tribe’ who lived on the streets, this group consisting also of family members including her son Bowen Bungaree and her relative Billy Warrall or Worrall, also known as Warrah Warrah and Ricketty Dick. British newcomers called her ‘Queen of Sydney and Botany’ and or ‘Queen of Sydney to South Head’. She outlived Bungaree by 22 years and on her death was buried in the Devonshire Street Cemetery, the site of which is now covered by Sydney’s Central Railway Station.

In 1845 Car-oo, Kaaroo, otherwise Cora Gooseberry Bungaree, guided Police Inspector William Miles and the artist George French Angas to see Aboriginal rock engravings around Port Jackson (Sydney Harbour). She was truly Indigenous ‘royalty’. The title ‘Cora Gooseberry Freeman Bungaree, Queen of Sydney and Botany’ was engraved on the metal breastplate she wore.


Dr. Keith Vincent Smith, Historian, 2018

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Dr Robert Edwards AO 1999
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program

Artist and subject

William Fernyhough (age 27 in 1836)

Cora Gooseberry (age 59 in 1836)

Donated by

Dr Robert (Bob) Edwards AO (12 portraits)

Related information

The Companion

Permanent collection catalogue

Café and shop

On one level The Companion talks about the most famous and frontline Australians, but on another it tells us about ourselves: who we read, who we watch, who we listen to, who we cheer for, who we aspire to be, and who we'll never forget. The Companion is available to buy online and in the Portrait Gallery Store.

Portraits for Posterity

Previous exhibition, 2006

Drawn from some of the many donations made to the Gallery's collection, the exhibition Portraits for Posterity pays homage both to the remarkable (and varied) group of Australians who are portrayed in the portraits and the generosity of the many donors who have presented them to the Gallery.

Heads of the People

A Portrait of Colonial Australia

Previous exhibition, 2000

For Tom Roberts - Australia's best nineteenth-century portrait painter - neither a proto-national portrait gallery nor more popular collections of portrait heads, were sufficient public celebrations for the notables of Australian history

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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.

The National Portrait Gallery is an Australian Government Agency