Rame Head (Victoria)

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Vandalism to a track sign reflects ongoing controversy about the spelling of the name.

Rame Head or Ram Head (37°46′S 149°29′E / 37.767°S 149.483°E / -37.767; 149.483) is a coastal headland in eastern Victoria, Australia. It is within the Croajingolong National Park. Little Rame Head lies to the east, past Wingan Inlet.

The local aboriginal people call the headland Konowee or Kouowee. The name Ram Head was given by Lieutenant James Cook (Captain Cook) to a point on the coast which he passed on 20 April 1770. He named it after Rame Head in Plymouth Sound, which its shape resembled.[1] Cook wrote the name without an "e" and that spelling was adopted by Bass and Flinders[2] and became official. At some point, perhaps quite early, the Royal Navy (and later Royal Australian Navy) used the spelling Rame, while Ram continued in civilian use. In 1971, the Victorian Government gazetted it as "Rame" to match its Cornish namesake.

A view from partway up Rame Head, looking north along the beach towards Wingan Inlet

Locals pronounce the name like "Sam", whereas the headland in Cornwall is pronounced like "same". The former reflects the initial spelling, and perhaps an idea it referred to a ram—as in a male sheep—although that is the case neither there nor in Cornwall. In Cook's time before 1800, the spelling for the point in Cornwall was "Ram" and started to change around 1810.

There is a walking track to the "summit" of the head. However, this point lacks a clear vantage point over surrounding scrub, and is simply marked by a trig point.


  1. ^ Captain Cook's Journal of the First Voyage Around the World
  2. ^ A Voyage to Terra Australis


Placenames Australia, journal of the Australian National Placenames Survey, June 2002 Rame Head at Geoscience Australia

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