1064 Mad Dan Morgan


Shirley continues her talk about famous outlaws from Australia's past.

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Shirley: Actually my home town, it’s called Culcairn, it’s famous for a man called mad Dan Morgan. And, he was a friend of Ned Kelley’s and he lived in an area of my home town which is a very flat area, but there’s one small hill and if you go to the top of that hill you can see for miles and miles around 360 degrees because everything is completely flat. So Mad Dan Morgan had his hideout up on this hill so he could see if the police were coming. Of course in those days everyone was on horses.

Jake: What did Mad Dan Morgan do? He was a friend of Ned Kelly’s but what did Mad Dan Morgan do himself?

Shirley: Well like Ned Kelly he was also a bush ranger which is what we call bandits in Australia-bush rangers, and I’m not sure exactly what he did but he robbed and people and I think he killed a few people and hid out. But again he was one of those people that the needy people sort of worshipped because he was fighting authority. We have a big tradition in Australia of rebelling against authority. So, even though these guys were not particularly good or doing good things they were lauded for being-for standing up to the authorities which in those days were very British controlled.

Learn Vocabulary from the Lesson

famous for

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It’s famous for a man

A person or place is ‘famous for’ some special reason. The meaning can be positive or negative. Notice the following.

  1. London is famous for its wet gloomy weather.
  2. Michael Jackson was famous for his music, dancing and ever changing appearance.

hide out

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He hid out.

When we ‘hide’ out, we go to a secret place where we cannot be found by other people. Here are two examples of the phrase ’hide out’.

  1. Many Nazi war criminals hid out in South America after World War II.
  2. When I was a kid, I used to hide out in a tree in my back yard.

the needy

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He gave all his money to the needy.

The phrase ‘the needy’ talks about poor people who often can’t afford to buy necessities such as food or clothing. Notice the sample sentences.

  1. In Christian countries, Christmas is a time to think about the needy.
  2. Mother Teresa spent her adult life among the needy.

rebel against authority

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There is a tradition there of rebelling against authority.

Authority talks about a person or people who are in control. Authority can be the government, the police, a teacher or even one's parents. When we rebel, we fight or disagree with authority or refuse to obey rules. See below.

  1. As a teenager I rebelled against authority, but now I work for the government.
  2. In many Asian cultures, it’s socially unacceptable to rebel against authority.

stand up to

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They were standing up to the administation.

We ‘stand up’ to defend ourselves against a person or situation that is more powerful than us. Note the samples:

  1. Thousands of protesters stood up to the authorities.
  2. We stood up to the stronger more experienced team and won.
Answer the following questions about the interview.

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Vocabulary Challenge

Complete the sentences with the words below.
famous for • hide out • the needy
rebel against • stand up to
  1. The crooks tried to in the building.
  2. Young people like to society.
  3. She always gives to .
  4. Sometimes you need to bullies.
  5. She is helping the poor.