Tag Archives: onomapoieic

Hamtai Gospel Recording

My father, Tom Palmer, made this recording in the year 1961 of a Hamtai man named Ätisä telling the story of Noah and the flood. He then gave it to Gospel Recordings. The Hamtai tribe is in Papua New Guinea, the tribe among which I was born and raised. My Father and his co-worker Geraldine Fitzgerald translated the New Testament into their language, and he is currently working on a revision of their New Testament.

A gold miner, or Australian government patrol officer, I can’t remember which, when he heard the Hamtai language, called it the “Kukukuku” language, because he said their speech sounded like when you pour out a CocaCola bottle onto the ground. I guess “Kukukuku” was his onomapoieic of the sound of a Coke bottle being poured.

Here is a picture of a Hamtai man that my Dad took with his Pentax Spotmatic and Kodachrome film (I don’t have one of Ätisä:

Hamtai Gospel Recording

Here is a video of a re-enactment of the Hamtai / Kukukuku initiation into manhood:


Hamtai History

The Joshua Project