In southern and south-eastern Asia and the Pacific, teeth were blackened or lacquered to keep them intact and healthy.
In 1967 the prime minister of Australia walked into the ocean and was never seen again.
How do you bring a dying language back from the brink? Incubate it in a nest, of course.
In World War II, New Zealand wanted a tank, but none of their allies had any to spare. So they made their own, with a tractor, corrugated iron, a mattress, and a postcard.
Remember those fish that raise their children inside their mouths? Two Australian frog species went even further: they raised tadpoles in their stomachs.
In the 1960s, Australia proposed moving the entire population of Nauru onto another island. Instead, the Nauruans opted for independence.
If you’re using an Australian recipe book, watch out for the tablespoon, or your baking will turn out all wrong.
In 1984, the Prime Minister of New Zealand announced a snap election on television while extremely drunk.
What’s the oldest river in the world? Well, Larapinta in western Australia only has water for a few days each year, but it has probably been around for four hundred million years.
Eighty percent of the surface area of the Pacific country Nauru has been strip-mined; most of its land has been shipped to Australia, New Zealand, and Britain.
I say, after brekkers do you want to see if Tollers from the Bodder wants to play some rugger or soccer for eccer? This “er” slang abbreviation came from Oxford University, where it has been in use since the 19th century.
For three years in the middle of the 12th century, the Tu’i Tonga Empire was ruled by a piece of wood.
In late 1808, a colossal volcanic eruption disrupted weather around the world. It was one of the three biggest eruptions of the 19th century – but we don’t know where it happened.
Samoa won independence from New Zealand through a concerted campaign of non-violent resistance. The Mau movement used a wide range of clever tactics, including boycotts, beetle-breeding, and surrendering en masse – and it worked.
The Aboriginal languages of southeast Australia have an ingenious counting system – there’s a physical mnemonic built directly into the language.