Friday, November 04, 2005

Final Installment: Appendix II and References and Abbreviations

(This concludes the serialization of Kassim Ahmad’s thesis, “Characterisation In Hikayat HangTuah.” – MBM)



[This synopsis is based on the Balai Pustaka edition (1958). Djakarta.]

HANG TUAH migrated with his parents from Sungai Ujung to Bintan. At about ten he became closely associated with four other boys (Hang Jebat, Hang Kasturi, Hang Lekir and Hang Lekiu) of his age. They grew up together and became fast friends. For their extraordinary daring and courage they were soon taken into the royal service. (pp. 1-43).

By the order of the Sultan the whole kingdom with all its subjects moved to Melaka. The Sultan installed his younger brother as Raja Muda, but soon condemned him for an alleged act treason. The disgraced prince was invited to become king in the land of Kalinga (benua Keling). (pp. 43-96).

The royal mission to obtain the hand of Tun Teja having failed, Patih Karma Wijaya, a one-tine Javanese minister, proposed a match between his present master and the daughter of Batara Majapahit, Raden Mas Ayu. The proposal was well received on both sides and preparations for the marriage were made. The Sultan, accompanied by Tuah and other officers, came to Majapahit. Tuah fought a duel with the famous Javanese warrior, Tamang Sari, and obtained his magic keris. The victory won for himself the title of Laksamana form Seri Batara. While the marriage celebrations were taking place, Tuah and his four friends went to Mt. Meria Pura to study asceticism and the warrior art under Sang Pertala. When they came back, they took revenge on Seri Batara and Patih Gajah Mada (who had been plotting against Tuah’s life) by breaking into the former’s private garden.

Laksamana then became the Sultan’s favourite and aroused jealousy among some officials including Patih Karam Wijaya. A case of disloyalty was framed against him and the Sultan ordered his execution. However, the Bendahara secretly advised him to go into exile. (pp. 177-180).

Tuah went to Inderapura and established a few useful contacts. He got in touch with Tun Teja, the daughter of Bendahara Seri Buanan, who once had refused to marry Raja Melaka but who was now the reluctant fiancée of Megat Panji Alma. He applied love-charms to her and she immediately fell for him. She even followed him to Melaka. In Melaka Tuah handed her over to the Sultan and thus regained his master’s favour.

The news of Teja’s elopement was transmitted to Megat Panji Alam in Terengganu. He therefore set out to take his revenge on the Sultan of Melaka. The Laksamana intercepted him in Inderapura where he was killed. (pp. 221-38).

Meanhwile Raden Mas Ayu had given brirth to twosons: raden Bahar dan Raden Bachar. (pp. 238-247).

Seri Betara soon heard of Raja Melaka’s marriage to Tun Teja. Hew as furious. Envoys were sent ostensibly to find out whether all was not well with Melaka since his son-in-law had not communicated with Majapahit for so long. In actual fact their task was to oblige the Sultan to come to Majapahit so that due action could be taken for his implied insult on Seri Batera’s daughter. (pp. 247-269).

The envoys did succeed in their task. Soon the Sultan, accompanied by his best officers, came to Majapahit. Numerous but barely concealed attempts were made to kill Tuah (and thereby to force Raja Melaka t pay homage to Majapahit); all failed. The sultan returned safely in the end. (pp.2270-293).

But Patih Gajah Mada did not stop there. He sent Merga Paksi with six other warriors to Melaka to destroy it by subversion. The Laksamana caught Marga Paksi at his game and killed him and all his men. (pp. 294-301).

Tuah became even more the Sultan’s favourite and once again the jealous officials under the leadership of Patih Karma Wijaya accused him of illicit relations with one of the courtladies – a crime amounting to ‘durhaka’. The Sultan ordered his execution, but the wise Bendahara secretly sent him up-country. There Tuah stayed with a certain religious teacher. (pp. 302-307).

Meanwhile, Jebat had been asked to occupy the position left vacant by Tuah. But soon he made it clear that he meant to revolt against the sultan’s authority in order to avenge Tuah’s death. The sultan quitted the palace and pronounced him guilty of high treason. The Sultan was pleased and Tuah was immediately recalled. (pp. 308-331).

A most tragic duel followed. By a trick Tuah was able to inflict a fatal wound on Jebat. Jebat was so disgusted that he ran amuk for three days before he died. (pp. 332-356).

By this time Patih Gajah Mada had heard of the death of his seven subversive agents. He sent another one smarter, but again Tuah sought him out and killed him. (pp. 348-356).

The Sultan decided to send a goodwill mission to kalinga (benua Kalin). Tuah led the mission and it was well received. Tuah stayed hthere for some time and won a duel against a local warrior. The Raja, who was once the Raja Muda of Melaka, wanted to dispatch Tuah to China. The mission left, was exceptionally well received by the Emperor (to the great disappointment of the Portuguese traders whose own representative had not been able obtain Imperial audience) and arrived back in Kalinga safely after a little skirmish with the Portuguese off the China coast. The Melaka mission then returned home. (pp. 357-392).

On the death of Seri Batara of Majapahit, Raden Babar was installed the new batara. The Laksamana who escorted him to Majapahit was intercepted on his way home by a prince from Berunai. The prince, Adipati Solok., was taken prisoner and brought to Melaka. He was well treated and was soon escorted back to Berunai by the Laksamana, who was duly rewarded by the prince’s ruler-father. (pp. 393-404).

In order to get some fine elephants breeds, the Melaka Raja dispatched Tuah to Siam. In Siam Tuah killed a few Japanese who insulted him. The mission returned safely with the elephants after having successfully fought off a Japanese retaliation squadron at the river mouth. (pp. 405-413).

Ayu gave birth to a girl Pueteri Gunung Lidang and Teja to two boys: Mahmud and Muhammad. A mission was snet to Ceylon (Selan) to obtain precious stones to be used in the royal dresses of the two princes who were about to be installed. (pp. 414-417).

The son of the Ceylonese raja, Raja Dolan, the old [Arabic] spelling the ‘j’ should be ‘ch’ ; hence Raja Cholan (Chuan) , came to Melaka to ask for the hand of Puteri Gunung Lidang. He was extremely fond of cock-fighting. While arrangements for the marriage were being made, he asked to be allowed to go to Terengganu as he planned to have some cock fights there. In Terengganu , however, he encountered a mishap. Hisship sank. When Puteri Gunung Lidang heard of this, she complained to her father who immediately sent a force under Laksamana to subjugate Terengganu. Tuah found the country in chaos, as it had caught fire. Ransacking the palace, he found the daughter of the Ternegganu bendhara, Tun Sekanda Jaya, and the son of Megat Kembar Ali, (the brother of Megat Panji Alam whom the Laksamana had killed in Inderapura before). Tuah took these two captives home (pp. 417-427).

Mahmud was married to the captive princess from terengganu and was installed raja in Lingga. Muhammad was married to the daughter of bendahara Paduka Raja, Segunda Lela, and was installed raja in Bintan. (pp. 428-433).

Meanwhile Teja had sent a messenger in the person of Jebat’s son, Hang Madim, to see her father in Inderapura. It happened that while Madim was there, Inderapura was attacked by swordfish. Many people were killed and Madim suggested a brilliant idea of defence. He was rewarded by the raja for this, but the jealous officials plotted against him. The death of the Bendahara removed the one man who could have saved him. He was skilled. The news of both deaths reached Melaka and gravely upset Teja whose complaint prompted the Sultan to send Laksamana to subdue Inderapura. The Laksamana imposed the rule of Melaka in Inderapura and arrested all those implicated in the murder of Hang Madim. (pp. 434-443).

Accompanied by the Laksamana and other officers, the Sultan went to sea on a pleasure trip. While nearing the island of Singapore, they sighted a golden fish beneath the boat. The sultan tried to see it: unfortunately his ancestral crown fell off. With keris in hand, the Laksamana went down to get it. As he was coming up, a crocodile snatched off the keris from his hand and the crown dropped once more and was lost. Ever since this episode both the Sultan and the Laksamana never fell well again. (pp. 444-447).

Meanwhile the Portuguese who had suffered defeat at the hands of Tuah off the China coast had reported to Portugal. An assault on Melaka was prepared. News of the arrival of a Portuguese armada was communicated to Melaka and the Laksamana, sick as he was, became inflamed with the passion to fight. He led the Malay squadron which drove the Portuguese ships out of Melaka waters. (pp. 448-456).

Intending to abdicate and install his daughter, Pueteri Gunung Lidang as ruler, the Sultan sent an embassy to Ottoman Turkey (Rum) to purchase guns and ammunitions in order to fortify Melaka against possible Portuguese aggression. The embassy, led by the Laksamana, was successful and returned with a good deal of armament materials. The sultan then officially installed his daughter but still continued to reign. (pp. 456-500).

Desirous to know the life beyond the grave, the Raja now called for volunteer to be buried alive. Tuah answered. The dubious discovery led the Raja to become pious. He distributed his wealth among his subjects, abdicated and went wandering as a mystic (pp. 500-505),.\

Meanwhile the Bendahara and the Laksamana had also retired (p. 504).

The Portuguese came again. They bribed and cheated the new ruler and her ministers into giving them a piece of land on which they built a so-called trading post which they secretly fortified with guns. One night they bombarded the town. It was well-timed with the arrival of the two fleets from Manila and Portugal. (pp. 506-507).

Melaka fell. The Malays retreated south and opened up Johor Lama, The Portuguese erected a stone fortification around the hill. Long after the Dutch came and, with the help of the Johor Malays, recovered Melaka from the Portuguese. (pp. 507-510).

The Laksamana was not heard of any mo, but he did not die. (p. 510).


Author & Title of Books Abbreviation

1. Brown, C.M.: Heroic Poetry, London, 1952. Brown

2. Chadwick, H.M.: The Heroic Age, Cambridge, 1926. Chadwick, H.A.

3. Chadwick, HM & NK: The Growth of Literature. Vol 1

Cambridge, 1932. Chadwick, Growth.

4. Hikayat Hang Tuah, Balai Pustaka, Djakarta, 1956. H.H.T.

5. Hooykaas, C: Over Maleise Literature, Leiden 1947. Hooykaas.

6. Sejarah Melayu (Abdullah’s edition), re-edited with

annotations by T.D. Situmurang and A. Teeuw,

Djambatan 1958. Sejarah Melayu.

7. Brown, C.C.: Sejarah Melayu trans. Sejarah Melayu,

JMBRAS Vol. XXV, Pts. 2&3. JMBRAS.

8. van der Tuuk, H.N.: Short Account of the Malay Manuscripts

Belonging to the Royal Asiatic Society Tuuk.

9. Winstedt, R. O.: A History of Malay Literature, JMBRAS

Vol. S VII, Pt. III, 1940. Winstedt.

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