The Eora (sometimes spelt Iora or Iyora) people were the Aboriginal occupants of the Sydney region in 1788 when the first European colonists arrived.
The Gadegal clan lived to the south and west of the Balmain peninsula, the Wanegal to the north and west, and the Cammeraygal on the present-day lower north-shore (e.g. Cammeray).
Some claim that Eora, sometimes spelt Iyora, means "from here", others that "yura", meaning "man", gave the word Iyura or Eora.
Some of the words of Aboriginal provenance still in use today are from the Eora language: dingo, woomera, wallaby, wombat, waratah, and boobook (owl).
The Eora lived largely from the produce of the sea and were expert in close-to-shore navigation, fishing, cooking and eating in the bays and harbours in their bark canoes.
When the First Fleet of 1300 convicts, guards and administrators arrived in January 1788, the Eora numbered about 1500.
A smallpox-like disease and other germs and viruses, along with the appropriation of the natural resources, saw the Eora practically die out during the 19th century.
The Eora language has been reconstructed from the many notes made of it by the original colonists, although there has possibly not been a continual oral tradition for over one hundred years.
Bennelong of the Eora tribe served as an interlocutor between the British colony at Sydney and the Eora people in the early days of the colony.
He was given a brick hut on what became known as Bennelong Point where the Sydney Opera House now stands.
He travelled to England in 1792 along with Yemmerrawanie and was presented to King George III on 24 May 1793.
Bennelong returned to Sydney in 1795.