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It takes place after a boy has passed an examination in the Koran and represents his formal admission to the communion of Islam. In certain portions of Malaya especially in the Northern States it is accompanied by such a wealth of irrelevant t detail as to suggest that it has been grafted upon an ancient festival belonging to an older faith than that of Islam,, but whatever may have been its origin the event is important enough from an orthodox Muhammadan standpoint to justify the sincere gratification of a Malay father at seeing the completion of his son's training in the creed of his ancestors.

The education of a Malay child is now conducted on European lines and bears no resemblance whatever to the system that prevailed in former times, Indeed, except for the existence of occasional Koran-classes, there used to be no schools — in our sense of the word — until the period of European ascendancy. Education was based upon a sort of apprenticeship. Most boys picked up a good deal of industrial knowledge by assisting their parents in the work of agriculture, fishing and trapping.

They acquired manual dexterity by work- ing in wood and rattan, and they gathered a large amount of miscellaneous information regarding crops, fruit-trees, irrigation, boats and the ways of fishes, animals and birds. They learnt also to be observant. In the matter of proverbs, old saws, folk-lore, tradition, history and popular verse, the girls were generally better instructed than the boys. But it must always be remembered that " the trail of the amateur " was ovc r alt Malay education.

A silversmith, for instance, could not live by bis art; in a small Malay village there was not enough work to support him. He had to be a farmer like all his neighbours, and he only used hia art to supplement his income. If his fame spread to other places he might be summoned to the Sultan's court and be made to work for the ruler; yet even there the rarity of silver prevented a silversmith being constantly employed. Apart from a certain amount of local renown there was no inducement whatever to lead a boy to become an artist or man of letters.

Moreover, there was no real competition. A village could nofr support two smiths : the most skilful artificer soon drove out his rival and monopolised what work there was. Here is my boy, Si-Alang. I desire to place him in your hands so that he may be taught to read the word of God, You will need a torch to lighten his path to knowledge, so please let me present you with this cane for use as a rod of correction in the event of his showing any indifference to the Divine Light, You should not poke out his eye or break his bones, but — short of such extreme measures- all things are permitted unto you.

The penghulu now visits parents, talks about " average attendances " at the village school, and finally threatens the father with the wrath of the Government if he allows his son to grow up in ignorance. Even this is sometimes ineffective. I have seen a Malay mother go down to a school, smash her son's slate, tear up his books, and defy the head master — and all because the boy's irregularity in attendance prevented his being presented at the annual examination of the class.

On this occasion I ventured to suggest that the visiting-teacher might be sent round to bring her to a more reasonable frame of mind, but my proposal was met by the crushing rejoinder that the lady was the visiting-teacher's wife. The old Malay Koran-schools were often residential. Boys were sent to live in the house of some renowned teacher, the parents supplying each of their sons with a sleeping-mat and pillow, a cooking-pot and a sack of rice.

Three lessons were given daily. They lasted for an hour at a time— one after the early morning prayer, the other after the midday devotions and the third after vespers. The instruction was of a most primitive character, A pupil began by learning to repeat correctly the Arabic formula with which every lesson began and ended.

When he had mastered these preliminaries he proceeded to study the alphabet, less for its own sake than as a sort of guide to reading Arabic prayers and texts. Through much memorising and through the assistance given him by his knowledge of the lettering he would in time succeed in being able to read the Koran and the principal prayers from end to end. There his education stopped. The general drift of the text was explained to him, but not the construction of the sentences nor the meaning of the Arabic words.

A slight amount of dogma was also imparted. Religious doctrine can, of course, be made to vary greatly accord- ing to the needs of the locality. A Patani imam onco gave a lecture on " infidels " in the presence of a Siamese Governor and of a European visitor. It did not necessarily refer to other faiths. Other religions had prophets of their own who were nevertheless true prophets like Nabi Isa 9 the prophet of the Christians, and Nabi Musa, the prophet of the Siamese.

Here he bowed to his foreign audience. Doctrines of this sort are not mere diplomatic statements to meet the needs of the moment ; they are sedulously preached by Moslem advocates of peace and conciliation in every part of the world.

Of course they differ very greatly from the. In practice the Malay boy has to memorise his Koran and his prayers before he can be admitted by circumcision to the community of Islam, and he can afford to postpone his studies of doctrine to a later date. At first sight nothing could appear more futile than the Koran-class instruction given to boys all over the Moslem world.

It is mere parrot-like repetition of certain texts in a language not understood by the pupils ; and, even if it develops the memory, it would seem to be useless either as an intellectual training or as an education in morals. But it is never safe to condemn a system that has proved acceptable to a large section of humanity. In some schools the more logical process of teaching a boy Arabic before teaching him the Koran has been tried and found wanting.

Arabic is a very difficult language; the teachers were unskilful, and the pupils became discouraged and gave up a task that seemed hopeless. Modern educationists are inclined to insist on the necessity of making study interesting to the student.

The Malay child who mastered an Arabic " broken plural " or some eccentricity in the ways of the Arabic verb would never receive as much praise and satisfaction as the boy who learnt a new prayer and was able to chant it correctly to the great joy and pride of his parents and the envy of the whole neighbourhood.

Malay boy to pick up a good deal of knowledge about the meaning of Arabic words and the syntax of the language. The process was slower, but the steps were pleasanter and more encouraging. Every prayer re- presented one more step to the good ; it was a milestone on the way to wisdom. The duller boys dropped out, and were content with what they knew; the cleverer boys went on and studied more.

Learning took a strong religions tinge and became rather fanatical, but it was never stifled by the form in which instruction was given. Meanwhile a boy learnt his Arabic alphabet and with a little coaching could apply it to the reading and writing of Malay. Manners were recognised as a very important item iu the education given at these old Malay Koran-classes; and nothing is more deplored by natives of the old school than the alleged inferiority of the present generation in this branch of instruction.

A boy was taught to be silent until he was addressed, to keep. He generally learnt these lessons well; Malay courtesy is admired by all. But such cases are rare. The well-educated Malay of the older generation is a master of courteous manners and quiet.

With great reluctance the chief rose and spoke at considerable length in a manner that roused the keen aesthetic appreciation of his critical fellow- countrymen. This feast is part of the circumcision ceremony. The formalities begin when the boy is clad in royal gar- ments and is set upon a royal throne for all and sundry to see. Then on the following day he is stripped, bathed and purified; he is stained with henna like a bridegroom and is dressed in the garb of a pilgrim to Mecca.

In this guise he recites prayers to the assembled guests in order to prove the sufficiency of his learning. When the prayers are over he rises and prostrates himself before his teacher in gratitude for past kindnesses. The parents now come forward with the customary gifts : a suit of clothes, a sum of money and certain articles of food. Then there follows in some parts of Perak a very curious ceremony. The boy is taken to an inner room, where he is stripped and covered with a rich cloth, while his mouth is filled with yellow glutinous rice and his body is sprinkled with the purifying rice-dust.

After this, two coconuts and two small packets of rice are slowly rolled over him from head to foot. This is done to drive away ill-luck. The circum- ciser or mudin then comes forward and gently taps the boy's teeth with a stone. This is also done to avert misfortune. Feasting follows. The boy is dressed again and is carried in procession round the village and down to the river for another ceremonial purification.

There the circumciser makes an appeal to the Spirit of the Waters, deprecating his wrath. The usual purifying rice powder is scattered on the stream and the usual offerings are made— yellow rice, a quid of betel, an egg, seven long packets of cooked rice and seven square packets of cooked rice.

When the Water Spirit has been pro- pitiated the boy is washed by his mother and has his long lock of hair solemnly shorn off by the mudin. The people then return to the house to witness the actual circumcision itself. While this is taking place the boy is made to sit either on a banana trunk or on a sack of rice. It is usual to circumcise a number of boys at one time so as to minimise the cost of the celebrations. In such cases the son of the giver of the feasts is treated as the king for the occasion, while the other boys whose parents contribute nothing play the part of mere attendants upon the central figure.

He appears in the Estimates. In the towns of the Straits Settlements the royal ceremonies are less con- spicuous. More attention is paid there to the religious details, while motor cars, jewellery and brass bands make up for the absence of the regalia and symbolism of the Native States.

A Malay girl is taught something of the Koran, though she is not expected to attain to the same standard of proficiency as her brothers. When her religious education is complete she is dressed like a pilgrim to Mecca and is admitted to the community of Islam by a ceremony much simpler and less public than the circum- cision-rites of boys. Ear-boring is still practised, but the huge, round ear-studs 2 which were assumed after this ceremony and worn by girls as emblems of' their maiden state, are now becoming ceremonial and are only put on for the wedding itself in order that they may be formally discarded a few days afterwards.

This seclusion varies in rigour in different parts of Malaya, being strictest among the " Jawipekan " popu- lation of the towns and least strict in the districts where 1 In Patani this ceremony is performed in infancy. The confine- ment of girls to their houses served to guard them from the dangerous notice of the chiefs and also from the risk of their injuring their matrimonial prospects by any foolish compromising acts.

In the law-abiding Menang- kabau communities of Sumatra a good deal of freedom could be safely allowed, provided that the women kept in parties by themselves and did not indulge in tete-a-tete interviews with fascinating young men. Out of this degree of freedom there grew up a pretty custom that has greatly influenced Malay literature — the practice of holding rhyming contests between the rival parties of the men and the girls.

A girl might be suddenly in- spired to extemporise or quote some pantun or verse that was apposite to the character, history or appearance of some young man who happened to be present. The opportunity was not to be missed. The person chaffed or one of his friends would retort with a second pantun.

The contest would then continue till one or other party was at a loss for a proper reply. The Malay quatrain is a very easy thing to extemporise, owing to the fact that its first two lines are mere jingles put in to rhyme with the last two, and also because every line is sung slowly and is followed by a chorus or refrain that gives time to the other party to think of an appro- priate answer.

At the same time there can be a vast difference in quality between one pantun and another, and there is every scope for skill and wit in these poetic contests, punctuated as they are by the applause or laughter of the audience. While, therefore, in everyday life the negotiations for a wedding are of a very common- place order, it is quite otherwise in ceremonies and in literature.

The diplomacy of a marriage generally commences when the parents or friends of the prospective bride- groom make advances to the girl's family with a view to finding out without exposing themselves to the humilia- tion of a public rebuff whether a proposal of this sort would be likely to be well received. Enquiries such as these need a good deal of tact.

The suitor's party do not wish to take any risks and the girl's parents do not like to show any suspicious eagerness to part with their daughter. Hints are sometimes used. What could be more innocent than the position of the little silver vase containing the sireh that is offered to a visitor? Yet if this vase is upset and left lying on its side, the quick-eyed enquirer knows that his quest is useless ; the lady's people do not desire the marriage.

If his hints become broader and the vase still remains upright he knows that he can proceed to more definite action. Professional marriage- brokers are often employed at this stage; their very presence suggests their errand to the girl's parents.

When it seems likely that the proposal of marriage will be well received the ladies of the young man's family call upon the bride, make much of her and endeavour to appraise her character and charms. The meaning of such overtures can hardly be mistaken ; but it is essential that a real understanding should be arrived at before the marriage can be openly discussed. A rebuff would be fatal to any friendly relations between the two families ; it would indeed be an insult.

Says one proverb. Betrothal — because of the feuds that may spring out of a broken promise — is the one occasion in life when the Malay tolerates no indecision and no evasion. Let us therefore suppose that the proposal is welcome to both parties and that there are no real difficulties in the way. The main details — the amount of the settlement to be made on the bride, the value of the wedding gifts, the probable duration of the engagement, and other questions of the same sort — are roughly settled by custom and are known to both.

All that is left is to have them definitely laid down so that no misunderstandings may arise afterwards. As these matters are too delicate for direct negotiation between the parties, they are usually referred to the penghulu and elders of the village. At this point secrecy ceases to be possible, even if every one is pledged to it.

Both parties submit their case to arbitration, knowing in outline what they have to expect and ready to abide by the decision of their elders if it is unfavourable to them on the minor issues that have to be decided. It was only drawn up for the guidance of Kathis who have to appraise the mas kahvrin for purposes of divorce in cases where no definite sum was actually agreed upon at the time of the wedding itself.

But this scale of settlements shows approximately what the bridegroom expects to have to pay and what the penghulu and his elders are likely to fix. Other matters have also to be arranged. The cost of the wedding festivities has to be paid by the bride's family, but the bridegroom has to contribute to it.

The penghulu has to fix the amount of this contribution of " money to go in smoke. The penghulu has also to fix the approxi- mate date of the marriage, so that neither side may evade its obligations by prolonging the engagement indefinitely. When everything has been arranged in such a manner as to leave no loophole for future disputes the agreement has still to be confirmed by a formal proposal and by its formal acceptance.

Malay etiquette expects the suitor's parents or guardians to proceed on his behalf to the lady's house and, after many apologies and much circumlocution, to enquire usually in verse whether the young man may be permitted to offer himself for acceptance as the lady's slave.

It also insists that the girl's relatives shall declare themselves quite unworthy of the proposed honour. The most that they will admit is that they are like the proverbial expression, "nearly up to but not attaining. Ceremonial gifts of betel- nut are then brought forward in two boxes adorned with palm blossoms and decorations of gilt or coloured paper. After these rings have been passed round from hand to hand so that everyone may be able afterwards to testify to the occurrence the suitor's mother is invited indoors to see the girl.

Of course such a visit is never unexpected. The girl is there, dressed in her best and overcome by self -consciousness as her future mother-in-law comes in, addresses her as "my child," kisses her and gives her the engagement-ring as evidence of her betrothal. The girl answers by doing obeisance. The ladies of the suitor's party then strike up a verse declaring that they have been attracted from afar by the lodestone of the damsel's beauty.

After a few more quatrains of this sort refreshments are handed round and the suitor's relatives go home. The public proposal of marriage and its public acceptance give finality to the contract. Its nature can no longer be questioned, and it has to be carried out unless one or other contracting party elects to pay damages for its violation.

The contract is final: the bystanders have witnessed it, the whole village is invited to testify to it. The rule as to its breach is ianda hnpat puking delapan : " if the engagement rings are worth four dollars, the girl's relatives must return eight. Nowadays the presents may be worth much more than four dollars, but that sum meant a great deal to the poverty-stricken ryots in the days before British ascendancy. After this settlement the suitor and the girl are looked upon as definitely engaged and are allowed to interchange small complimentary gifts.

They are not, however, supposed to see anything of each other, as any conduct suggesting forwardness on the lady's part would be an offence against the Indonesian rule that forbids " the well to seek the bucket " or " the pestle to seek the mortar. Some men, intoxicated with love, cannot sleep after this vision; others can. He is entertained to dinner on the verahdah, brings gifts of money, is very obsequious to his future mother-in-law. When the month of Shaaban comes round and the annual fast is imminent, the girl's parents send over to the house of her betrothed a gift of rice-powder, limes, loofah-fibre, perfumes and other cosmetics used in the ceremonial ablutions that precede the Malay Lent.

This delicate attention is acknowledged by return-gifts of cakes and small sums of money for spending at the minor feast days that occur about this time. Similar courtesies are shown once or twice during the Fast itself, but the great festival of the hari raya is not used for any exchange of civilities between the betrothed. In every country it sometimes happens that a man falls desperately in love with a girl already engaged to someone else.

In such cases every possible opposition must be made to the new suitor if a feud with the first suitor is to be avoided. On this point all Malay law was explicit. He had to defend himself against the murderous enmity of his injured rival until such time as the authorities could step in and put an end to the quarrel. Indonesian custom knew by experience that it had to concern itself more with pacifying feuds than with preventing them ; it never hesitated about compounding an offence.

If a man's betrothed was seduced or abducted, the law stepped in and made the wrong-doer pay compensation all round and a fine to the Bendahara as well. If he failed to pay, he was sold into slavery for the debt. If he paid, the matter blew over. Marriage by abduction became a recognised institution, 1 with a special scale of enhanced payments associated with it.

In the old wild days of Malay rule these abductions often led to most tragic results. If a girl was famous for her beauty the report of her engagement was enough to bring about a crisis. Any disappointed suitor — or perhaps some gay Lothario tempted by the spice of danger that attends the plucking of forbidden fruit — might have recourse to the simple expedient of seizing the girl and threatening to drive his heris through her heart if any attempt was made at a rescue.

An outrage of this sort was known as panjat angkara and was hazardous in the extreme. Even if the abductor escaped instant death he dared not sleep, lest he should be mur- dered in his sleep ; he dared not eat, lest his food should be drugged ; he had to be constantly on his guard, lest he should be suddenly speared by a treacherous thrust through the thin flooring of a Malay house.

The "Malay Annals' 9 record the case of a Javanese chief who succeeded in winning a Malacca wife by a desperate panjat angkara. Many abductors were less fortunate. The relatives refused. He then forced his way into her house, seized her by the hair, drew his kris and defied everybody.

Eventually he was drugged — probably with his friends' connivance, for he was not slain — and the girl was released and married to one Mat Arshad. But it must not be supposed that this pmjat angkara was a recognised and regular form of marriage like panjat adat.

It was far too violent for that ; it was a savage variant of the crime pasdonnel, and had much in common with the amok, which is only the Malay form of suicide. How else can one explain the action of Hang Kasturi, who, when his intrigue was discovered, slew the girl in the most cruel manner, stripped and exposed her mutilated body, and then fought all comers till he was slain?

The average Malay engagement pursued its tranquil uneventful course until the prosaic incident of a rice harvest placed the families of the prospective bride and 1 The Btory is given in the " Malay Annals " and is very famous. In the old days of native rule a bad harvest meant a general curtailment of the wedding-festivities.

In the present age of security and peace the beneficent alien money-lender is always ready to make up for the defi- ciencies of the crops. The marriage-ceremonial has become more elaborate than ever, while the people are sinking more and more into debt.

The formalities attending a Malay wedding are so elaborate that a European is apt to lose sight of their essential features in his bewilderment at the quantity of incidental detail. Indeed, the actual marriage service is a very simple rite that lies outside the customary cele- brations. These celebrations should go on for at least seven days.

The first three days are given up to the " henna-staining " festivities ; the fourth day is devoted to the adornment of the happy pair, to their meeting and to their sitting in state; the fifth and sixth days are days of little importance ; the seventh day witnesses the ceremonial lustrations of the married couple. The fourth day is the most notable. During the first three " henna-staining " days the bride is at home to those of her lady-f riendB who express a wish to assist in painting her fingers with henna.

The actual henna-staining is done by a professional expert and the assistance given by the visitors is purely nominal. The first " henna " night is known as the hinai churi, because the staining is done in private and in a very small way ; the second night is the hinai bgsar, when the fingers, the toes and even the sides of the feet of both bride and groom are painted with henna.

Both nights are marked by feasts and dancing. On one of the two nights a special " henna-dance " is performed; the other dances and amusements are of the regular Malay type and are only given for the amusement of the guests. On one of these two nights also a special wedding-dish of rice 1 is served.

These gifts are presented to the sound of much music and gun or cracker firing. The morning of the fourth day is taken up with the ceremonial' shaving 4 of the bride's fringe and with her adornment for the festivities of the evening. Her hair to the width of a finger's breadth all round the forehead is drawn forward and shaved off, while the band plays special tunes in honour of the event.

After this shaving is over, the bride puts on her bridal dress and jewellery. In her hair she fixes a number of artificial flowers of tinsel- work, kept in position with wires; to her ears she attaches the heavy, round ear-studs 1 that are the emblems of virginity. She is also adorned with golden nail-protectors, with hollow anklets, with necklaces, with three heavy crescent-shaped breast ornaments known as dokoh, and, in many cases, with as much additional jewellery as her mother can borrow for the occasion.

He is dressed as a warrior king. He wears the soldier's short coat, 8 made of rich silk with a gold edging. When the procession is ready it starts off with the bridegroom and sometimes with many symbolic gifts to make its way slowly and "circuitously to the house of the bride.

It cheers itself upon the way with the sound of much cracker-firing, with shouts, with shots, with the banging of drums, with the clanging of gongs and with as many other noises as the village is capable of produc- ing. The bridegroom himself is borne in state by the best means of conveyance obtainable, be that conveyance 1 8ubang.

As he approaches his destination the noise becomes more and more deafening, and when he stops it is impossible to hear anyone speak. This is the signal for the bride's people to suddenly become awake to the fact that something is happening. Does he come in peace or in warP" A colloquy ensues. Sometimes the bridegroom's party apologize for his coming : " He comes by no wish of his own ; he is drawn by some magnet of.

All this, of course, gives unlimited opportunities for friendly chaff. Or again, they may pretend to resist him and hurl sweetmeats at the advancing host of the bride- groom's supporters. A mimic battle ensues and goes on until some well-meant act of treachery gives the bridegroom admission and prevents the jest from lasting too long. His followers crowd in after him. It is usual at this stage for the young man to display a timid modesty that accords very ill with his truculent soldier-dress.

Everyone hastens to reassure him and to lead him to the bridal dais where his bride is waiting. There the pair have to be cere- monially seated together with their little fingers inter- locked. The process is like an exercise in physical drill in which the performer is made to sink slowly down into a squatting posture and then to straighten his knees and stand erect.

Bride and groom have to go on doing this together till they succeed in seating themselves slowly and exactly at the same moment — as custom requires. They also sometimes have to exchange vows that they will cherish each other and each other's good name. Once seated they are expected to remain motionless while the eyes of all the guests are fixed upon them.

In Perak the guests are allowed to come up in strict order of precedence and lay offerings of silver on a platter before the newly-married pair. One by one they come up, doing obeisance, first to royalty if present and then to the bride and bride- groom, as king and queen of the evening. The married pair interchange mouthfuls of rice as evidence of their new relation to one another ; the feast begins, and at last the guests are sent off in honour to their homes, the less distinguished being sometimes presented with packets of boiled rice and the more distinguished with the telur joran or coloured eggs stuck on branches.

On or about the seventh day the ceremonial bathing takes place. A temporary bath-house is built on a dais above a flight of seven steps, and is prepared for the reception of the bridal pair. The two march up together into it, either holding a handkerchief or with their little fingers interlocked.

They sit side by side on a bench or on a banana stem. The bride's hair is untied. In some cases the water is passed through a cloth filled with flowers and palm-shoots; in some cases coconut-milk, lime-juice and rice powder are used as cosmetics for these ablutions ; in all cases everything possible is done to give a ceremonial character to the whole lustration. In the south the pipe carrying the water is carved into the shape of a dragon's mouth at its extremity.

Both in the north and in the south of the Peninsula the lustration ceremony includes the passing of a curious bridal cord round the necks of the married pair, and it ends with the severance of this cord. But long before this cord is severed the excited matrons who wash the bridal couple have turned the water on each other and the ceremony turns into a general fight, in which syringes are the guns and the missiles are streams of water.

The spectators are splashed and wetted until the signal for the cessation of the fun is given by the breaking of the cord that binds the bride and the bride- groom. At a Patani wedding, observed by Mr. Winstedt, this severance was effected by fire; the flame of the burning ends was blown out by the bridegroom and the soot of the charred extremities was rubbed on the foreheads of both him and his wife.

They see very little of each other and are not permitted to be alone. It is not till three days, or a week, or even a fortnight has elapsed after the " final " fourth day l that the bridegroom is allowed to have tho bride to himself. But the marriage is not considered void 2 and the passing of such a public affront on his wife's family is not likely to conduce to the success of his future life.

It is considered bad taste as well as bad policy to create a quarrel at this stage. Any differences are enquired into and can be amicably settled without the cognizance of all the scandalmongers of the village. What happens is this. The imam or other officiating elder opens the proceedings with a religious appeal, such as, " I exhort you to the fear of Allah. But as the formula is long, and as it is in Arabic, and as the guardian is usually too illiterate and too flustered to be intelligible in a language that he does not know, he appoints some more learned man to be his attorney l and to make the offer in his name.

The offer is then made by the attorney. As soon as it has been made the presiding elder gives a warning tug to the bridegroom's arm by way of telling him that he must now express his acceptance of the offer. He does so — in Arabic. This formula is short enough to present little difficulty even to an illiterate man, but the nervousness of a bridegroom occasionally makes him use some expression that is not to be found in any Arabic dictionary. Everything has then to be repeated all over again — the offer, the warning tug, and the reply.

At last the bridegroom gets his words right and the marriage is nearly valid. It is made quite valid by the two necessary witnesses being appealed to, and by their replying that they have heard everything that has taken place. The presiding elder then repeats a prayer 2 more or less to this effect: M Grod, make union between these two as Thou didst make union between the water and the earth. The bride need not be present at all, and if she is a maiden and under age her consent need not be asked.

What is fairly evident from the elaborate wedding ceremonies of the Malays is the fact that the actual religious rite is looked upon as a legalising form like the signing of the register in an English church or the attendance at the Mairie in France.

Henna-staining is a custom that prevails in most Muhammadan countries and was probably imported with Islam. The procession of the armed and mounted bridegroom, the mimic resistance offered to him and the efforts to overcome it either by bribery or battle may be far-away echoes of a time when marriage by capture or marriage by purchase was the recognised rule of the day.

Many of the other incidents have no special reference to marriage. The sitting in state and the ceremonial lustrations, for instance, are not confined to weddings. The shaving of the forehead is hard to explain: certain superstitions are connected with it; inferences regarding the bride's virtue are drawn from the way the hair behaves.

In one old romance, the " Hikayat Koris," a distinction is drawn between wives for whom a bridegroom thought it worth his while to shave his own forehead and those to whom he did not pay that compliment. We can see traces of marriage by purchase in the advances paid at betrothal and in the other customary gifts.

We find signs of the matriarchate in the rule that the bridegroom must reside in his wife's house for some considerable time after his wedding. Upon the simple Moslem marriage-rite there is superimposed a whole mass of ancient custom that the Malay refuses to discard. He considers the religious ceremony to be legal but inadequate ; he wants the other things as well.

He does not change old customs for new: he adds the new to the old. In old days high officers of state used to come on painted elephants to their installation. In the Raja Bendahara arrived in a carriage and pair, In the Raja Muda came in a motor-car with carriages and elephants in his train. Last of all will come a faithful retainer, prepared to carry the Chief on his shoulders should our modern contrivances end by leaving his old master in the lurch.

Immediately after his marriage a Malay husband settles down to live in his father-in-law's house. He gives his services to his wife's relatives, helps in their rice-fields, looks after their fruit-trees and repairs the family dwelling. This idyllic state of things may go on for some time, but sooner or later it is apt to be ended by the growth of the new family. When the old home ceases to be big enough, the young couple desire to set up an establishment of their own. This is not a difficult matter.

During some idle month, when rice is not being planted, the husband and his friends clear an acre or two of good dry soil on which to erect a small house and plant a little garden of coconuts and fruit- trees. If the ancestral rice-lands are of small extent, they proceed to extend them by adding a little field or two. By degrees they build and furnish the new house, and make everything ready for the flitting. The migration would not, however, be reckoned as an incident in Malay life if there were no ceremony attached to it.

The villagers assemble ; the old people make a speech enumerating all the articles with which they are endowing the new household; the young people express their complete satisfaction with all that has been done for them, and the flitting is ac- complished.

These formalities are not intended, as a cynic might suggest, to advertise the family reputation for generosity; they are necessary to avoid disputes. Should there subsequently be a quarrel or divorce, every neighbour will be able to testify to the proper distribu- tion of the family property. When the speeches are over, the neighbours go home enriched by an additional subject of conversation, while the new householders indicate their approval of everything by keeping indoors for three days, so as not to display their radiant faces to any malignant spirit of envy that may be lurking about the village.

Possessed of a house, a garden and a rice-field, they are now in a position to earn a comfort- able living. Of course the above procedure is not invariable. A Malay official cannot afford to live in his wife's house if the Government desires his presence in some other place. Old parents, when their last remaining daughter is married, sometimes move to an annexe or enlarge the house so as to retain their daughter and to save them- selves from the danger of being left alone in their old age.

Moreover, it is not always possible to find unoccupied land in the vicinity of the house of the old people. In such cases the new household is apt to make its home in the new country while the old parents keep to their ancestral village. Krian has been largely populated by this planting-out of young families from Province Wellesley; the coast of Selangor is being settled from Malacca; the whole Peninsula is being helped by a similar tide of migration from Sumatra and Banjermasin.

But Perak itself is not yet over-populated, and the Perak Malay does not leave his native country. Once settled in his new house the young Malay is "king in his own place " ; he can " think of what he pleases and sing when- ever he likes. They also re- cognise that woman's kingdom is the home — a fact which militates against the young husband's perfect freedom. Apart, however, from what the Malays call "the foe in one's own blanket" the householder is independent enough.

He works whenever he likes and takes a holiday as often as he pleases. For a few weeks in the year he is very busy in the rice-fields ; during the remaining ten months he enjoys comparative leisure. He has his meals at irregular times, goes to mosque irregularly, does a little fishing at odd moments — indeed, apart from padi- planting, most Malay work is done at odd moments : it is not the great business of life.

Religion supplies him with a time-table — the lunar calendar of the Muhammadans — with its incidents for each day, week, month and year. It divides up the day with the five daily prayers which he forgets and insists on his attending mosque every Friday, unless he can find some excuse for his habitual absences. It also marks off certain days of the year as great religious festivals.

The Moslem year is a lunar year unconnected with seasonal events. It begins with the month Mnhwrram. The first day of the year is not marked by any fes- tivities nor does the month itself contain any special Sunnite holidays, but Indian Shiite influence shows itself in Fenang in the boria performances and in occasional lamentations over the death of the Prophet's grandson Husain. A boria is a troupe of strolling minstrels, generally dressed and drilled as soldiers and headed by a Captain and an Army Chaplain.

The troupe visits the houses of wealthy or popular Moslems and serenades them till paid to go away. The songs are sometimes eulogistic and sometimes comic; the tunes are admir- ably suited for their purpose — pleasing at first and monotonous after a time, so that the troupe is gladly welcomed and gladly dismissed. The religious element is entirely absent from the boria performances and there is no apparent reason for their association with the month of Muhwrram.

Safar, the second month, is regarded as unlucky : to take up any enterprise in Safar is like beginning a journey on a Friday. It is the month in which Muham- mad's fatal illness declared itself. The last Wednesday of the month is a religious event, a day of penitence and of ceremonial purification from the sins of the world ; but it has been turned by the light-hearted Malays into a sort of bathing-picnic known as the Mandi Safar. The twelfth day of the third month is the anniver- sary of the Prophet's birth and also of his deaths but the former event is regarded as the.

The day is wholly a day of rejoicing, marked by much good cheer and by the chanting of many mqbulud or Arabic hymns and discourses about the life of Muhammad. In consequence of this great festival the name mavlud is often given to the whole month in preference to the orthodox Arabic description of Rabi'u'-l-awwaL Malays, who do like long Arabic words, sometimes use the ex- pression "the four months with the same name" when speaking of the months Rabi'u-l-awwal, llabi'u-'l-akhir, Jamcbdu-l-awwal and Jawwdu-l-akhir.

The names are not the same, but they seem to possess certain family likenesses and are all equally unpronounceable. The next great Moslem holiday is the 27th day of the seventh month, Rajab, the anniversary of the Prophet's journey to heaven. It is a great occasion for chanting and prayer and it is commemorated by all Malays of piety and learning. The eighth month,. Shaaban, is rendered dismal by the approach of the ninth, the Fasting Month.

The fifteenth night of Shaaban is believed to be the time when the Almighty shakes the Tree of Life causing the fall of leaves that represent the lives of men. Through- out this night in some parts of Arabia the mosques are thronged with agonised suppliants appealing to the Almighty to allow their lives to be prolonged through- out the coming year.

Such scenes are rare in the Peninsula. They represent the days of preparation for the Malay Lent and should be marked by ceremonial ablutions to purify the soul and by much food to fortify the body. They are soon over, and the Great Fast begins. Throughout the month of Ramazcm a Moslem is forbidden between sunrise and sunset to eat, drink, chew, smoke or swallow.

It is a time of misery, toiti- gated by the possibility of sleeping all day and feasting all night. During the whole of this period the Spirits of Evil are believed to be chained up, so that the supersti- tious Malay can and does go about at night without fear of ghostly visitants.

As each sunset approaches a faithful few find their way to the mosque and await in prayer and meditation the exact moment when they will be permitted to break their fast. When sunset comes the worshippers share a light meal of rice-gruel kanji buka puasa before returning to their homes. The whole of the month is treated as a sort of a religious retreat, during which great princes like the Sultan of Perak offer a generous hospitality to the pious poor who flock to the palace-assemblies.

All through the night there may be heard the long wailing souud of the Arabic chants with which the devotees beguile the weary hours, At last the dawn approaches, the last long meal is taken, and the exhausted worshipper curls up on the floor in sleep.

As the end of the month approaches, the fervour of devotion becomes more intense, the special Arabic chants tarawih become longer, and the strain becomes more cruel. The 26th night is the " Night of Power " l 1 LailatuH-kadir. It is the culminating point of the Bamazan devotions. After the "Night of Power " the weary worshipper scans the horizon anxiously for a sight of the new moon that is to put an end to his long-drawn troubles. The new moon comes at last; the Great Fast is followed by the Great Feast.

Every Malay dons his finest garments, calls on all his friends, gives his family the best dinner he can afford, sends small gifts of cakes to his European acquaintances and apologizes to his seniors for any offence that he may have committed during the past year. The rejoicings go on for the first three days of the tenth month, Shaunoal.

The next great day is the 10th of the twelfth month, Dzu'l-kijjah. It is the month of the Pilgrimage. On this 10th day the pilgrims at Mecca visit a place called the Mina Bazaar, near Mount Arafat, and offer up a sacrifice to mark the conclusion of the Haj. The day is known in the Straits as the hari raya haji. It is the anniversary of his pilgrimage.

On this day the haji — who is often a humble Javanese gardener working in some Singapore or Penang compound — puts on the gorgeous robes and turban of the Arab, takes a holiday and astonishes his employer by his sudden magnificence. The transformation does not last long. This festival is the last of the Moslem year. The Malay possesses another year, a solar year, with holidays and festivals that have no connection with religion.

It begins with some definite sign — the height of the Pleiades above the horizon or the seasonal ripen- ing of some fruit 1 — telling the ryot that the time for planting is at hand. The true Malay year is a sort of farmer's almanac. Its first festival is marked by the reading of prayers, the burning of incense, and the singing of chants over the mother-seed that is to be used in the rice-nursery.

The calendar is marked by further festivals at every stage of cultivation — at the sowing, the transplanting and the harvesting. It is supplemented by special holidays, when mimic fighting or mock-propitiation is used to get the better of the ghostly denizens of the district who prey upon the crops. This solar calendar is only unsatisfactory because it is unauthorised and uncontrolled by any supreme authority, so that its details vary in every part of the Peninsula.

It is the relic of an old agricultural religion and belongs properly to the province of Folk- lore and Malay Belief. None the less its holidays are observed and its feasts are well attended. The exact day for each event is fixed by the local pawang, but it turns upon the state of the crops and the details of the padi-planting industry.

The industry is the subject of a special pamphlet and need not be considered here. One thing alone must be discussed: how does rice-planting pay? The whole of Malay life turns on this industry and the crucial point in it is one about 1 The ptrah fruit. Hale was appealing for a reduction of taxation, and in his anxiety to forestall any criticism of his figures he made out a strong case against himself.

His figures seem too high. In a most interesting experiment was made in Krian by order of the Director of Agriculture. Eight small pieces of land were marked off and cultivated in different ways in order to test the relative effectiveness of different processes of planting.

The bulkiest crop gantang to the acre was obtained from the land cultivated by Banjarese according to their own native methods. Some instruc- tive differences were noticed in the three other fields cultivated by Banjarese on their own lines as modified in some small detail by the Director.

The average for the four Banjarese fields was gantang per acre. A field cultivated by Tamils gave a poorer result. A field treated with bone manure gave a miserable crop gantang to the acre ; selection of local seed by- weight was a failure gantang to the acre , and the importation of special seed from Ceylon resulted in a complete fiasco. The local ryots, who saw in these ex- periments an attempt to improve on their own methods, summed up the situation with the pithy proverb that it is useless to teach swimming to ducks.

The crop of gantang was declared to be a fair crop for the locality. Hale's estimated price of 8 cents per gantang is also rather high. If we set against this sum the tithe taken by the mosque, the cost of buffaloes if used for ploughing , and the money-lender's interest at 24 per cent.

As a matter of fact, it does pay. A loan at 24 per cent, is not a business transaction, nor does a Malay borrow money to open up new land ; indeed, he could not get his loan till he has cultivated his land and secured his title.

He borrows money for some wedding-ceremony or afl security for a friend ; and we ought not to lay at the door of the rice-growing industry the improvidence and recklessness of individual ryots. Rice-growing is not the Malay peasant's sole means of livelihood. He usually has his little holding with its thirty or forty cocount trees round his house.

If he resides near the sea he can earn an' appreciable amount by working as a fisherman. If he lives near a forest he may gather and sell rattans and other jungle produce. In some places he can make great profits by cutting the nipah palms and making house-roofing. If his house is near a high road he may keep a cart or carriage and earn an occasional dollar by letting it out on hire. In many cases he has some special source of income of his own — he may be a mosque-official or a Koran-teacher or a school-master or a smith.

Separately considered these sources of profit amount to very little; collectively they mean a great deal. As it is, the Malay peasant is never likely to furnish a plentiful supply of cheap labour ; he is far too well-off for that. He may take odd jobs and small contracts, but he will not consent to exchange his lot for that of a regular wage-earner on an estate.

Why, indeed, should he? His life is varied, pleasant, and healthy ; it supplies him with all that he needs ; it allows him ample leisure and absolute personal freedom. All that is necessary is the choice of a suitable season — the month after the harvest — when everyone is at leisure and the granaries are full. Agriculture is the soul of Malay life.

When a Malay becomes so ill that the ministrations of the local herbalists are of no avail he sends for the pawang. Now the paivang is a very unorthodox person : historically he is the priest of an older religion and theoretically a trafficker with evil spirits and a dabbler in the blackest of black art. To the pious dignitaries of the mosque the pawang is an abomination, because he represents the accredited agent of the Devil.

But the sick man is not likely to stand upon such ceremony ; believing as he does that all sickness comes from the Evil One he will not be deterred by any rules of propriety from entering into negotiations with his tormentor. He sends for the paivang. The British motor vessel Santhla brought who left by train for Canton. Another are leaving for Canton by sea today.

Almost 1, more Chinese repatriates are. The Arcado. Page 2. May 6. For this we have to thank the planter over the way, who sent over an Indian mandore, some of whose Javanese labourers were expert thatchers. The attaps near. Ankles Puffy Backache, Kidneys Strained! Page 3. Sir Frankl. Tan Jwee Ting Faquir Mohamed. Sat Lt -Col. A young woman. A Malayan Railway official told the Sunday Times this morning that the.

Sat Brigadier LH O. Jorore Bahru. Rice Is dearer by about five rents a gantang while brown sugar. The airmen replace a similar number in Singapore who. Karim bin Adanl. Parties of air training corps radets from all parts of the Commonwealth. We have. Bethesda ; 11 Close, f a. JM, Page 4. Exiles from the Lion City remember ANY Saturday A night, in a quiet suburb of the Australian city of Melbourne, a number of people may be observed to arrive separately between the hours of seven and 8 p.

Intolerance is the besetting sin of moral fervour. N Whitehead. People not only like you for what you are, but also for your individual attitude to them. No extra charge! Full-size berths free to Honolulu only. Page 5. These quack eye-cures, claimed by their manufacturers to cure any form of eye. Lee Soon Lee.

The opium It was alleged, was found when the taxi waj searched at a. Appearing before Mr. P Jack. Kuala Lumpur. Dilbahadur Gurung and Rifleman Birkhabahadur Thapa. Three other awards. North Borneo, and Sarawak from June 1 this year. Letters will be reduced from 25 cents per half ounce to 15 rents, light air. Sat —A large scale savings campaign has been organised in the Federation by the post office savings bank according to a Government statement today.

Pamphlets, posters, films and broadcasts have been prepared and the scheme should be in. Sat— The Penang Coroner, Mr. A tin of caustic soda was. One British soldier was fatally wounded and. Mr Scuiiy joined the choir at the Cathedral of Good Shepherd at. Kuantan Sat U. Karupaya and R. Mangayagi, a year-old girl, faced a summons charge in Kuantan of assaulting Maria Pushpan in the Kuantan Hospital barracks.

Heaviest traffic is between Singapore and Penang, and the volume of traffic in recent months constitutes a record. They say that it is unlucky for a person who has no tuberculosis to go for an x-ray as he might offend the Cods of Heaven and. William E. Robert Tilley at the Singapore Harbour Board yesterday shortly after midnight. Inspector M. Soh Hee Koe. Tan Thiam ,. Cold Storage bread has extra Vitamin B Only the finest ingredients are used.

It Is mjd under tha most hygienic conditions and it wrapped. Page 6. Page 7. She flew 4, miles from Florida to do. Sometimes being English, but not conservative, mind, not conservative, I wonder whatever will they mix up next? I hate purposely chosen recipes which cam. Designed to. Page 8. Such attire, she f. II I Vtftf the sreen or Tell her you love her The reason for this being that she wanted to be fair to another boy whom the had known a long.

First, lot us examine the Intellectual approach. You pick a subject at which you are fairly well Informed. Television in Britain has started a new stunt, putting an overweight on a strict diet and televising her from time to time over a period of rnonUas so that all may know tee result of the treatment The total weight taken oft. Your grandfather has such bright and perfect teeth, my ton, because he has always fused Gibbs Dentifrice.

You know how good it tastes, too, and it costs me so little.. Page 9. He was sentenced to. Tan admitted two previous coav;c ions. Senior Inspector Lai Beharl Singh, prosecuting,. The successful candidates are: Leong Hong Toh. Kens Ban Ec Mehervan Stntrh. Cordeiro, Tan Benjt Joo. They are: Dato Yahya bin Abul Rajak. Inche Yahya bin Sheikh Ahmad, Mr. James Whyte, Mr. Khoo Cheng Keat. Sat At the annual meeting of the Benlong Indian Association officials were elected as follows: President.

Puthupelly; vice-presidents, Mr. Kslimii-th-j Filial: hon secretary, Mr- Ganapathj, hon. Nair; hon. The Johore Nationality Bill will. They bad run away from their homes in Singapore. Terror, in the Naval Kaso. The bandU was shot from lose. Sat THE clerk in charge of the Kwangsl Association in Chamberlain Road in the centre of the town was surprised early this mominsr when he saw a huge red flag fluttering from the top of the Association building.

Page Because we believe that firm and last. A good deal less than oil has been poured on each side of the troubled Atlantic waters since General. Why go like sheep to the slaughter? They umi from the middleman who were caught short by the sudden, sickening drop In the price of wool. The walla, they tell. That old black magic is still around DO you believe In witchcraft? When I first came out East. I was amazed to find people going to cocktai parties In full evening dress.

Admittedly, at ofhc. McLellan, chairman of the Straits Steamship Company, in his statement presented at the ordinary general meeting of the company. Hia tenner Mrs Alict C. Page, who arera marntd at fhe Presbyterian Church yesterday afternoon Rev. What does it take to save a million dollars in your CPF Account as your retirement plan? You may have heard about a Singaporean who accumulated a million dollars in CPF savings.

A French nuclear attack submarine was among two navy ships that recently conducted a patrol through the South China Sea, its defence minister announced, in a move likely to anger Beijing, which claims most of the strategic waters as its territory.

New Zealand announced the suspension of high-level military and political contacts with Myanmar Tuesday, the first major international move to isolate the country's ruling junta following a coup. A WHO expert sent to China to probe the coronavirus hit out at US intelligence on Covid as his team headed home with few answers about the origin of a pandemic that was forcing more clampdowns in some of the hardest-hit parts of the world. A Chinese national is set to be charged for allegedly importing kg of undeclared meat products without a valid import license.

Myanmar's military raided the Yangon headquarters of ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi's party late Tuesday, officials said, as the United States joined the UN in "strongly" condemning violence against protesters demanding a return to democracy.

Wall Street stocks powered to fresh records Monday, extending last week's surge on optimism that additional US fiscal stimulus is coming soon and an expected economic recovery. All three major indices ended at all-time highs, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average gaining 0. Protesters started rallying across Myanmar's largest city of Yangon on Tuesday, defying warnings from the military threatening "action" against large gatherings.

Cabinet Minister Michael Gove likened the relationship to a bumpy airplane takeoff that is followed by passengers settling down to enjoy their flight. Read full article. Story continues. Latest stories. AFP News. South China Morning Post. Yahoo Finance Singapore. Yahoo News Singapore.

Associated Press.

MAN GETS BREAST IMPLANTS ON BET AWARDS

Maxwell , XLIX. Two Perak Manuscripts, W. Maxwell, II. Suggestion regarding new Malay Dictionary, C. Irv- ing, II. Malay-English Dictionaries, L. Changes in consonants in different Malay dialects , A. Maxwell, XII. Malay language and literature, E. Eost, XV. The Malay Howdah, W. Pijnappel, XVI. Botany and Malay Names of Plants by Eev.

The title Sang, A. Malay words of Portuguese origin. Malay titles in Ulu Perak. X and Q. Maxwell, XVII. Malays, W. Pagar, W. Temikei; Mendikei Kamendikei, AY. Cockup, W. Galgal, W. Jam, W. The Crocodile, H. Clifford, X and Q, IV. Sec; No. Malay Language and Literature. Raja Ambong fairy tale with English translation, W. The best thing about Jumia is that it provides all types of clothing for both men and women under one online portal so if you are looking for a one-stop shop for your buying needs in Kenya, Jumia is your best bet for hassle-free shopping online.

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It takes place after a boy has passed an examination in the Koran and represents his formal admission to the communion of Islam. In certain portions of Malaya especially in the Northern States it is accompanied by such a wealth of irrelevant t detail as to suggest that it has been grafted upon an ancient festival belonging to an older faith than that of Islam,, but whatever may have been its origin the event is important enough from an orthodox Muhammadan standpoint to justify the sincere gratification of a Malay father at seeing the completion of his son's training in the creed of his ancestors.

The education of a Malay child is now conducted on European lines and bears no resemblance whatever to the system that prevailed in former times, Indeed, except for the existence of occasional Koran-classes, there used to be no schools — in our sense of the word — until the period of European ascendancy. Education was based upon a sort of apprenticeship. Most boys picked up a good deal of industrial knowledge by assisting their parents in the work of agriculture, fishing and trapping.

They acquired manual dexterity by work- ing in wood and rattan, and they gathered a large amount of miscellaneous information regarding crops, fruit-trees, irrigation, boats and the ways of fishes, animals and birds. They learnt also to be observant. In the matter of proverbs, old saws, folk-lore, tradition, history and popular verse, the girls were generally better instructed than the boys. But it must always be remembered that " the trail of the amateur " was ovc r alt Malay education.

A silversmith, for instance, could not live by bis art; in a small Malay village there was not enough work to support him. He had to be a farmer like all his neighbours, and he only used hia art to supplement his income. If his fame spread to other places he might be summoned to the Sultan's court and be made to work for the ruler; yet even there the rarity of silver prevented a silversmith being constantly employed. Apart from a certain amount of local renown there was no inducement whatever to lead a boy to become an artist or man of letters.

Moreover, there was no real competition. A village could nofr support two smiths : the most skilful artificer soon drove out his rival and monopolised what work there was. Here is my boy, Si-Alang. I desire to place him in your hands so that he may be taught to read the word of God, You will need a torch to lighten his path to knowledge, so please let me present you with this cane for use as a rod of correction in the event of his showing any indifference to the Divine Light, You should not poke out his eye or break his bones, but — short of such extreme measures- all things are permitted unto you.

The penghulu now visits parents, talks about " average attendances " at the village school, and finally threatens the father with the wrath of the Government if he allows his son to grow up in ignorance. Even this is sometimes ineffective. I have seen a Malay mother go down to a school, smash her son's slate, tear up his books, and defy the head master — and all because the boy's irregularity in attendance prevented his being presented at the annual examination of the class.

On this occasion I ventured to suggest that the visiting-teacher might be sent round to bring her to a more reasonable frame of mind, but my proposal was met by the crushing rejoinder that the lady was the visiting-teacher's wife. The old Malay Koran-schools were often residential. Boys were sent to live in the house of some renowned teacher, the parents supplying each of their sons with a sleeping-mat and pillow, a cooking-pot and a sack of rice.

Three lessons were given daily. They lasted for an hour at a time— one after the early morning prayer, the other after the midday devotions and the third after vespers. The instruction was of a most primitive character, A pupil began by learning to repeat correctly the Arabic formula with which every lesson began and ended. When he had mastered these preliminaries he proceeded to study the alphabet, less for its own sake than as a sort of guide to reading Arabic prayers and texts.

Through much memorising and through the assistance given him by his knowledge of the lettering he would in time succeed in being able to read the Koran and the principal prayers from end to end. There his education stopped. The general drift of the text was explained to him, but not the construction of the sentences nor the meaning of the Arabic words. A slight amount of dogma was also imparted. Religious doctrine can, of course, be made to vary greatly accord- ing to the needs of the locality.

A Patani imam onco gave a lecture on " infidels " in the presence of a Siamese Governor and of a European visitor. It did not necessarily refer to other faiths. Other religions had prophets of their own who were nevertheless true prophets like Nabi Isa 9 the prophet of the Christians, and Nabi Musa, the prophet of the Siamese. Here he bowed to his foreign audience.

Doctrines of this sort are not mere diplomatic statements to meet the needs of the moment ; they are sedulously preached by Moslem advocates of peace and conciliation in every part of the world. Of course they differ very greatly from the. In practice the Malay boy has to memorise his Koran and his prayers before he can be admitted by circumcision to the community of Islam, and he can afford to postpone his studies of doctrine to a later date. At first sight nothing could appear more futile than the Koran-class instruction given to boys all over the Moslem world.

It is mere parrot-like repetition of certain texts in a language not understood by the pupils ; and, even if it develops the memory, it would seem to be useless either as an intellectual training or as an education in morals. But it is never safe to condemn a system that has proved acceptable to a large section of humanity. In some schools the more logical process of teaching a boy Arabic before teaching him the Koran has been tried and found wanting.

Arabic is a very difficult language; the teachers were unskilful, and the pupils became discouraged and gave up a task that seemed hopeless. Modern educationists are inclined to insist on the necessity of making study interesting to the student. The Malay child who mastered an Arabic " broken plural " or some eccentricity in the ways of the Arabic verb would never receive as much praise and satisfaction as the boy who learnt a new prayer and was able to chant it correctly to the great joy and pride of his parents and the envy of the whole neighbourhood.

Malay boy to pick up a good deal of knowledge about the meaning of Arabic words and the syntax of the language. The process was slower, but the steps were pleasanter and more encouraging. Every prayer re- presented one more step to the good ; it was a milestone on the way to wisdom. The duller boys dropped out, and were content with what they knew; the cleverer boys went on and studied more. Learning took a strong religions tinge and became rather fanatical, but it was never stifled by the form in which instruction was given.

Meanwhile a boy learnt his Arabic alphabet and with a little coaching could apply it to the reading and writing of Malay. Manners were recognised as a very important item iu the education given at these old Malay Koran-classes; and nothing is more deplored by natives of the old school than the alleged inferiority of the present generation in this branch of instruction.

A boy was taught to be silent until he was addressed, to keep. He generally learnt these lessons well; Malay courtesy is admired by all. But such cases are rare. The well-educated Malay of the older generation is a master of courteous manners and quiet. With great reluctance the chief rose and spoke at considerable length in a manner that roused the keen aesthetic appreciation of his critical fellow- countrymen. This feast is part of the circumcision ceremony.

The formalities begin when the boy is clad in royal gar- ments and is set upon a royal throne for all and sundry to see. Then on the following day he is stripped, bathed and purified; he is stained with henna like a bridegroom and is dressed in the garb of a pilgrim to Mecca. In this guise he recites prayers to the assembled guests in order to prove the sufficiency of his learning. When the prayers are over he rises and prostrates himself before his teacher in gratitude for past kindnesses.

The parents now come forward with the customary gifts : a suit of clothes, a sum of money and certain articles of food. Then there follows in some parts of Perak a very curious ceremony. The boy is taken to an inner room, where he is stripped and covered with a rich cloth, while his mouth is filled with yellow glutinous rice and his body is sprinkled with the purifying rice-dust. After this, two coconuts and two small packets of rice are slowly rolled over him from head to foot.

This is done to drive away ill-luck. The circum- ciser or mudin then comes forward and gently taps the boy's teeth with a stone. This is also done to avert misfortune. Feasting follows. The boy is dressed again and is carried in procession round the village and down to the river for another ceremonial purification. There the circumciser makes an appeal to the Spirit of the Waters, deprecating his wrath.

The usual purifying rice powder is scattered on the stream and the usual offerings are made— yellow rice, a quid of betel, an egg, seven long packets of cooked rice and seven square packets of cooked rice. When the Water Spirit has been pro- pitiated the boy is washed by his mother and has his long lock of hair solemnly shorn off by the mudin.

The people then return to the house to witness the actual circumcision itself. While this is taking place the boy is made to sit either on a banana trunk or on a sack of rice. It is usual to circumcise a number of boys at one time so as to minimise the cost of the celebrations. In such cases the son of the giver of the feasts is treated as the king for the occasion, while the other boys whose parents contribute nothing play the part of mere attendants upon the central figure.

He appears in the Estimates. In the towns of the Straits Settlements the royal ceremonies are less con- spicuous. More attention is paid there to the religious details, while motor cars, jewellery and brass bands make up for the absence of the regalia and symbolism of the Native States. A Malay girl is taught something of the Koran, though she is not expected to attain to the same standard of proficiency as her brothers.

When her religious education is complete she is dressed like a pilgrim to Mecca and is admitted to the community of Islam by a ceremony much simpler and less public than the circum- cision-rites of boys. Ear-boring is still practised, but the huge, round ear-studs 2 which were assumed after this ceremony and worn by girls as emblems of' their maiden state, are now becoming ceremonial and are only put on for the wedding itself in order that they may be formally discarded a few days afterwards.

This seclusion varies in rigour in different parts of Malaya, being strictest among the " Jawipekan " popu- lation of the towns and least strict in the districts where 1 In Patani this ceremony is performed in infancy. The confine- ment of girls to their houses served to guard them from the dangerous notice of the chiefs and also from the risk of their injuring their matrimonial prospects by any foolish compromising acts.

In the law-abiding Menang- kabau communities of Sumatra a good deal of freedom could be safely allowed, provided that the women kept in parties by themselves and did not indulge in tete-a-tete interviews with fascinating young men. Out of this degree of freedom there grew up a pretty custom that has greatly influenced Malay literature — the practice of holding rhyming contests between the rival parties of the men and the girls. A girl might be suddenly in- spired to extemporise or quote some pantun or verse that was apposite to the character, history or appearance of some young man who happened to be present.

The opportunity was not to be missed. The person chaffed or one of his friends would retort with a second pantun. The contest would then continue till one or other party was at a loss for a proper reply. The Malay quatrain is a very easy thing to extemporise, owing to the fact that its first two lines are mere jingles put in to rhyme with the last two, and also because every line is sung slowly and is followed by a chorus or refrain that gives time to the other party to think of an appro- priate answer.

At the same time there can be a vast difference in quality between one pantun and another, and there is every scope for skill and wit in these poetic contests, punctuated as they are by the applause or laughter of the audience. While, therefore, in everyday life the negotiations for a wedding are of a very common- place order, it is quite otherwise in ceremonies and in literature. The diplomacy of a marriage generally commences when the parents or friends of the prospective bride- groom make advances to the girl's family with a view to finding out without exposing themselves to the humilia- tion of a public rebuff whether a proposal of this sort would be likely to be well received.

Enquiries such as these need a good deal of tact. The suitor's party do not wish to take any risks and the girl's parents do not like to show any suspicious eagerness to part with their daughter. Hints are sometimes used. What could be more innocent than the position of the little silver vase containing the sireh that is offered to a visitor? Yet if this vase is upset and left lying on its side, the quick-eyed enquirer knows that his quest is useless ; the lady's people do not desire the marriage.

If his hints become broader and the vase still remains upright he knows that he can proceed to more definite action. Professional marriage- brokers are often employed at this stage; their very presence suggests their errand to the girl's parents.

When it seems likely that the proposal of marriage will be well received the ladies of the young man's family call upon the bride, make much of her and endeavour to appraise her character and charms. The meaning of such overtures can hardly be mistaken ; but it is essential that a real understanding should be arrived at before the marriage can be openly discussed.

A rebuff would be fatal to any friendly relations between the two families ; it would indeed be an insult. Says one proverb. Betrothal — because of the feuds that may spring out of a broken promise — is the one occasion in life when the Malay tolerates no indecision and no evasion. Let us therefore suppose that the proposal is welcome to both parties and that there are no real difficulties in the way. The main details — the amount of the settlement to be made on the bride, the value of the wedding gifts, the probable duration of the engagement, and other questions of the same sort — are roughly settled by custom and are known to both.

All that is left is to have them definitely laid down so that no misunderstandings may arise afterwards. As these matters are too delicate for direct negotiation between the parties, they are usually referred to the penghulu and elders of the village. At this point secrecy ceases to be possible, even if every one is pledged to it.

Both parties submit their case to arbitration, knowing in outline what they have to expect and ready to abide by the decision of their elders if it is unfavourable to them on the minor issues that have to be decided. It was only drawn up for the guidance of Kathis who have to appraise the mas kahvrin for purposes of divorce in cases where no definite sum was actually agreed upon at the time of the wedding itself.

But this scale of settlements shows approximately what the bridegroom expects to have to pay and what the penghulu and his elders are likely to fix. Other matters have also to be arranged. The cost of the wedding festivities has to be paid by the bride's family, but the bridegroom has to contribute to it. The penghulu has to fix the amount of this contribution of " money to go in smoke. The penghulu has also to fix the approxi- mate date of the marriage, so that neither side may evade its obligations by prolonging the engagement indefinitely.

When everything has been arranged in such a manner as to leave no loophole for future disputes the agreement has still to be confirmed by a formal proposal and by its formal acceptance. Malay etiquette expects the suitor's parents or guardians to proceed on his behalf to the lady's house and, after many apologies and much circumlocution, to enquire usually in verse whether the young man may be permitted to offer himself for acceptance as the lady's slave.

It also insists that the girl's relatives shall declare themselves quite unworthy of the proposed honour. The most that they will admit is that they are like the proverbial expression, "nearly up to but not attaining. Ceremonial gifts of betel- nut are then brought forward in two boxes adorned with palm blossoms and decorations of gilt or coloured paper. After these rings have been passed round from hand to hand so that everyone may be able afterwards to testify to the occurrence the suitor's mother is invited indoors to see the girl.

Of course such a visit is never unexpected. The girl is there, dressed in her best and overcome by self -consciousness as her future mother-in-law comes in, addresses her as "my child," kisses her and gives her the engagement-ring as evidence of her betrothal. The girl answers by doing obeisance. The ladies of the suitor's party then strike up a verse declaring that they have been attracted from afar by the lodestone of the damsel's beauty. After a few more quatrains of this sort refreshments are handed round and the suitor's relatives go home.

The public proposal of marriage and its public acceptance give finality to the contract. Its nature can no longer be questioned, and it has to be carried out unless one or other contracting party elects to pay damages for its violation. The contract is final: the bystanders have witnessed it, the whole village is invited to testify to it. The rule as to its breach is ianda hnpat puking delapan : " if the engagement rings are worth four dollars, the girl's relatives must return eight.

Nowadays the presents may be worth much more than four dollars, but that sum meant a great deal to the poverty-stricken ryots in the days before British ascendancy. After this settlement the suitor and the girl are looked upon as definitely engaged and are allowed to interchange small complimentary gifts. They are not, however, supposed to see anything of each other, as any conduct suggesting forwardness on the lady's part would be an offence against the Indonesian rule that forbids " the well to seek the bucket " or " the pestle to seek the mortar.

Some men, intoxicated with love, cannot sleep after this vision; others can. He is entertained to dinner on the verahdah, brings gifts of money, is very obsequious to his future mother-in-law. When the month of Shaaban comes round and the annual fast is imminent, the girl's parents send over to the house of her betrothed a gift of rice-powder, limes, loofah-fibre, perfumes and other cosmetics used in the ceremonial ablutions that precede the Malay Lent.

This delicate attention is acknowledged by return-gifts of cakes and small sums of money for spending at the minor feast days that occur about this time. Similar courtesies are shown once or twice during the Fast itself, but the great festival of the hari raya is not used for any exchange of civilities between the betrothed. In every country it sometimes happens that a man falls desperately in love with a girl already engaged to someone else.

In such cases every possible opposition must be made to the new suitor if a feud with the first suitor is to be avoided. On this point all Malay law was explicit. He had to defend himself against the murderous enmity of his injured rival until such time as the authorities could step in and put an end to the quarrel.

Indonesian custom knew by experience that it had to concern itself more with pacifying feuds than with preventing them ; it never hesitated about compounding an offence. If a man's betrothed was seduced or abducted, the law stepped in and made the wrong-doer pay compensation all round and a fine to the Bendahara as well. If he failed to pay, he was sold into slavery for the debt. If he paid, the matter blew over.

Marriage by abduction became a recognised institution, 1 with a special scale of enhanced payments associated with it. In the old wild days of Malay rule these abductions often led to most tragic results. If a girl was famous for her beauty the report of her engagement was enough to bring about a crisis. Any disappointed suitor — or perhaps some gay Lothario tempted by the spice of danger that attends the plucking of forbidden fruit — might have recourse to the simple expedient of seizing the girl and threatening to drive his heris through her heart if any attempt was made at a rescue.

An outrage of this sort was known as panjat angkara and was hazardous in the extreme. Even if the abductor escaped instant death he dared not sleep, lest he should be mur- dered in his sleep ; he dared not eat, lest his food should be drugged ; he had to be constantly on his guard, lest he should be suddenly speared by a treacherous thrust through the thin flooring of a Malay house. The "Malay Annals' 9 record the case of a Javanese chief who succeeded in winning a Malacca wife by a desperate panjat angkara.

Many abductors were less fortunate. The relatives refused. He then forced his way into her house, seized her by the hair, drew his kris and defied everybody. Eventually he was drugged — probably with his friends' connivance, for he was not slain — and the girl was released and married to one Mat Arshad. But it must not be supposed that this pmjat angkara was a recognised and regular form of marriage like panjat adat.

It was far too violent for that ; it was a savage variant of the crime pasdonnel, and had much in common with the amok, which is only the Malay form of suicide. How else can one explain the action of Hang Kasturi, who, when his intrigue was discovered, slew the girl in the most cruel manner, stripped and exposed her mutilated body, and then fought all comers till he was slain? The average Malay engagement pursued its tranquil uneventful course until the prosaic incident of a rice harvest placed the families of the prospective bride and 1 The Btory is given in the " Malay Annals " and is very famous.

In the old days of native rule a bad harvest meant a general curtailment of the wedding-festivities. In the present age of security and peace the beneficent alien money-lender is always ready to make up for the defi- ciencies of the crops. The marriage-ceremonial has become more elaborate than ever, while the people are sinking more and more into debt.

The formalities attending a Malay wedding are so elaborate that a European is apt to lose sight of their essential features in his bewilderment at the quantity of incidental detail. Indeed, the actual marriage service is a very simple rite that lies outside the customary cele- brations. These celebrations should go on for at least seven days. The first three days are given up to the " henna-staining " festivities ; the fourth day is devoted to the adornment of the happy pair, to their meeting and to their sitting in state; the fifth and sixth days are days of little importance ; the seventh day witnesses the ceremonial lustrations of the married couple.

The fourth day is the most notable. During the first three " henna-staining " days the bride is at home to those of her lady-f riendB who express a wish to assist in painting her fingers with henna. The actual henna-staining is done by a professional expert and the assistance given by the visitors is purely nominal. The first " henna " night is known as the hinai churi, because the staining is done in private and in a very small way ; the second night is the hinai bgsar, when the fingers, the toes and even the sides of the feet of both bride and groom are painted with henna.

Both nights are marked by feasts and dancing. On one of the two nights a special " henna-dance " is performed; the other dances and amusements are of the regular Malay type and are only given for the amusement of the guests. On one of these two nights also a special wedding-dish of rice 1 is served. These gifts are presented to the sound of much music and gun or cracker firing.

The morning of the fourth day is taken up with the ceremonial' shaving 4 of the bride's fringe and with her adornment for the festivities of the evening. Her hair to the width of a finger's breadth all round the forehead is drawn forward and shaved off, while the band plays special tunes in honour of the event. After this shaving is over, the bride puts on her bridal dress and jewellery. In her hair she fixes a number of artificial flowers of tinsel- work, kept in position with wires; to her ears she attaches the heavy, round ear-studs 1 that are the emblems of virginity.

She is also adorned with golden nail-protectors, with hollow anklets, with necklaces, with three heavy crescent-shaped breast ornaments known as dokoh, and, in many cases, with as much additional jewellery as her mother can borrow for the occasion. He is dressed as a warrior king. He wears the soldier's short coat, 8 made of rich silk with a gold edging. When the procession is ready it starts off with the bridegroom and sometimes with many symbolic gifts to make its way slowly and "circuitously to the house of the bride.

It cheers itself upon the way with the sound of much cracker-firing, with shouts, with shots, with the banging of drums, with the clanging of gongs and with as many other noises as the village is capable of produc- ing.

The bridegroom himself is borne in state by the best means of conveyance obtainable, be that conveyance 1 8ubang. As he approaches his destination the noise becomes more and more deafening, and when he stops it is impossible to hear anyone speak.

This is the signal for the bride's people to suddenly become awake to the fact that something is happening. Does he come in peace or in warP" A colloquy ensues. Sometimes the bridegroom's party apologize for his coming : " He comes by no wish of his own ; he is drawn by some magnet of. All this, of course, gives unlimited opportunities for friendly chaff. Or again, they may pretend to resist him and hurl sweetmeats at the advancing host of the bride- groom's supporters.

A mimic battle ensues and goes on until some well-meant act of treachery gives the bridegroom admission and prevents the jest from lasting too long. His followers crowd in after him. It is usual at this stage for the young man to display a timid modesty that accords very ill with his truculent soldier-dress.

Everyone hastens to reassure him and to lead him to the bridal dais where his bride is waiting. There the pair have to be cere- monially seated together with their little fingers inter- locked. The process is like an exercise in physical drill in which the performer is made to sink slowly down into a squatting posture and then to straighten his knees and stand erect.

Bride and groom have to go on doing this together till they succeed in seating themselves slowly and exactly at the same moment — as custom requires. They also sometimes have to exchange vows that they will cherish each other and each other's good name. Once seated they are expected to remain motionless while the eyes of all the guests are fixed upon them. In Perak the guests are allowed to come up in strict order of precedence and lay offerings of silver on a platter before the newly-married pair.

One by one they come up, doing obeisance, first to royalty if present and then to the bride and bride- groom, as king and queen of the evening. The married pair interchange mouthfuls of rice as evidence of their new relation to one another ; the feast begins, and at last the guests are sent off in honour to their homes, the less distinguished being sometimes presented with packets of boiled rice and the more distinguished with the telur joran or coloured eggs stuck on branches.

On or about the seventh day the ceremonial bathing takes place. A temporary bath-house is built on a dais above a flight of seven steps, and is prepared for the reception of the bridal pair. The two march up together into it, either holding a handkerchief or with their little fingers interlocked.

They sit side by side on a bench or on a banana stem. The bride's hair is untied. In some cases the water is passed through a cloth filled with flowers and palm-shoots; in some cases coconut-milk, lime-juice and rice powder are used as cosmetics for these ablutions ; in all cases everything possible is done to give a ceremonial character to the whole lustration. In the south the pipe carrying the water is carved into the shape of a dragon's mouth at its extremity.

Both in the north and in the south of the Peninsula the lustration ceremony includes the passing of a curious bridal cord round the necks of the married pair, and it ends with the severance of this cord. But long before this cord is severed the excited matrons who wash the bridal couple have turned the water on each other and the ceremony turns into a general fight, in which syringes are the guns and the missiles are streams of water.

The spectators are splashed and wetted until the signal for the cessation of the fun is given by the breaking of the cord that binds the bride and the bride- groom. At a Patani wedding, observed by Mr. Winstedt, this severance was effected by fire; the flame of the burning ends was blown out by the bridegroom and the soot of the charred extremities was rubbed on the foreheads of both him and his wife. They see very little of each other and are not permitted to be alone.

It is not till three days, or a week, or even a fortnight has elapsed after the " final " fourth day l that the bridegroom is allowed to have tho bride to himself. But the marriage is not considered void 2 and the passing of such a public affront on his wife's family is not likely to conduce to the success of his future life. It is considered bad taste as well as bad policy to create a quarrel at this stage. Any differences are enquired into and can be amicably settled without the cognizance of all the scandalmongers of the village.

What happens is this. The imam or other officiating elder opens the proceedings with a religious appeal, such as, " I exhort you to the fear of Allah. But as the formula is long, and as it is in Arabic, and as the guardian is usually too illiterate and too flustered to be intelligible in a language that he does not know, he appoints some more learned man to be his attorney l and to make the offer in his name.

The offer is then made by the attorney. As soon as it has been made the presiding elder gives a warning tug to the bridegroom's arm by way of telling him that he must now express his acceptance of the offer. He does so — in Arabic.

This formula is short enough to present little difficulty even to an illiterate man, but the nervousness of a bridegroom occasionally makes him use some expression that is not to be found in any Arabic dictionary. Everything has then to be repeated all over again — the offer, the warning tug, and the reply. At last the bridegroom gets his words right and the marriage is nearly valid. It is made quite valid by the two necessary witnesses being appealed to, and by their replying that they have heard everything that has taken place.

The presiding elder then repeats a prayer 2 more or less to this effect: M Grod, make union between these two as Thou didst make union between the water and the earth. The bride need not be present at all, and if she is a maiden and under age her consent need not be asked. What is fairly evident from the elaborate wedding ceremonies of the Malays is the fact that the actual religious rite is looked upon as a legalising form like the signing of the register in an English church or the attendance at the Mairie in France.

Henna-staining is a custom that prevails in most Muhammadan countries and was probably imported with Islam. The procession of the armed and mounted bridegroom, the mimic resistance offered to him and the efforts to overcome it either by bribery or battle may be far-away echoes of a time when marriage by capture or marriage by purchase was the recognised rule of the day.

Many of the other incidents have no special reference to marriage. The sitting in state and the ceremonial lustrations, for instance, are not confined to weddings. The shaving of the forehead is hard to explain: certain superstitions are connected with it; inferences regarding the bride's virtue are drawn from the way the hair behaves. In one old romance, the " Hikayat Koris," a distinction is drawn between wives for whom a bridegroom thought it worth his while to shave his own forehead and those to whom he did not pay that compliment.

We can see traces of marriage by purchase in the advances paid at betrothal and in the other customary gifts. We find signs of the matriarchate in the rule that the bridegroom must reside in his wife's house for some considerable time after his wedding.

Upon the simple Moslem marriage-rite there is superimposed a whole mass of ancient custom that the Malay refuses to discard. He considers the religious ceremony to be legal but inadequate ; he wants the other things as well.

He does not change old customs for new: he adds the new to the old. In old days high officers of state used to come on painted elephants to their installation. In the Raja Bendahara arrived in a carriage and pair, In the Raja Muda came in a motor-car with carriages and elephants in his train.

Last of all will come a faithful retainer, prepared to carry the Chief on his shoulders should our modern contrivances end by leaving his old master in the lurch. Immediately after his marriage a Malay husband settles down to live in his father-in-law's house. He gives his services to his wife's relatives, helps in their rice-fields, looks after their fruit-trees and repairs the family dwelling.

This idyllic state of things may go on for some time, but sooner or later it is apt to be ended by the growth of the new family. When the old home ceases to be big enough, the young couple desire to set up an establishment of their own. This is not a difficult matter. During some idle month, when rice is not being planted, the husband and his friends clear an acre or two of good dry soil on which to erect a small house and plant a little garden of coconuts and fruit- trees.

If the ancestral rice-lands are of small extent, they proceed to extend them by adding a little field or two. By degrees they build and furnish the new house, and make everything ready for the flitting. The migration would not, however, be reckoned as an incident in Malay life if there were no ceremony attached to it.

The villagers assemble ; the old people make a speech enumerating all the articles with which they are endowing the new household; the young people express their complete satisfaction with all that has been done for them, and the flitting is ac- complished.

These formalities are not intended, as a cynic might suggest, to advertise the family reputation for generosity; they are necessary to avoid disputes. Should there subsequently be a quarrel or divorce, every neighbour will be able to testify to the proper distribu- tion of the family property. When the speeches are over, the neighbours go home enriched by an additional subject of conversation, while the new householders indicate their approval of everything by keeping indoors for three days, so as not to display their radiant faces to any malignant spirit of envy that may be lurking about the village.

Possessed of a house, a garden and a rice-field, they are now in a position to earn a comfort- able living. Of course the above procedure is not invariable. A Malay official cannot afford to live in his wife's house if the Government desires his presence in some other place.

Old parents, when their last remaining daughter is married, sometimes move to an annexe or enlarge the house so as to retain their daughter and to save them- selves from the danger of being left alone in their old age. Moreover, it is not always possible to find unoccupied land in the vicinity of the house of the old people. In such cases the new household is apt to make its home in the new country while the old parents keep to their ancestral village. Krian has been largely populated by this planting-out of young families from Province Wellesley; the coast of Selangor is being settled from Malacca; the whole Peninsula is being helped by a similar tide of migration from Sumatra and Banjermasin.

But Perak itself is not yet over-populated, and the Perak Malay does not leave his native country. Once settled in his new house the young Malay is "king in his own place " ; he can " think of what he pleases and sing when- ever he likes. They also re- cognise that woman's kingdom is the home — a fact which militates against the young husband's perfect freedom.

Apart, however, from what the Malays call "the foe in one's own blanket" the householder is independent enough. He works whenever he likes and takes a holiday as often as he pleases. For a few weeks in the year he is very busy in the rice-fields ; during the remaining ten months he enjoys comparative leisure.

He has his meals at irregular times, goes to mosque irregularly, does a little fishing at odd moments — indeed, apart from padi- planting, most Malay work is done at odd moments : it is not the great business of life. Religion supplies him with a time-table — the lunar calendar of the Muhammadans — with its incidents for each day, week, month and year.

It divides up the day with the five daily prayers which he forgets and insists on his attending mosque every Friday, unless he can find some excuse for his habitual absences. It also marks off certain days of the year as great religious festivals. The Moslem year is a lunar year unconnected with seasonal events. It begins with the month Mnhwrram. The first day of the year is not marked by any fes- tivities nor does the month itself contain any special Sunnite holidays, but Indian Shiite influence shows itself in Fenang in the boria performances and in occasional lamentations over the death of the Prophet's grandson Husain.

A boria is a troupe of strolling minstrels, generally dressed and drilled as soldiers and headed by a Captain and an Army Chaplain. The troupe visits the houses of wealthy or popular Moslems and serenades them till paid to go away. The songs are sometimes eulogistic and sometimes comic; the tunes are admir- ably suited for their purpose — pleasing at first and monotonous after a time, so that the troupe is gladly welcomed and gladly dismissed.

The religious element is entirely absent from the boria performances and there is no apparent reason for their association with the month of Muhwrram. Safar, the second month, is regarded as unlucky : to take up any enterprise in Safar is like beginning a journey on a Friday. It is the month in which Muham- mad's fatal illness declared itself.

The last Wednesday of the month is a religious event, a day of penitence and of ceremonial purification from the sins of the world ; but it has been turned by the light-hearted Malays into a sort of bathing-picnic known as the Mandi Safar. The twelfth day of the third month is the anniver- sary of the Prophet's birth and also of his deaths but the former event is regarded as the.

The day is wholly a day of rejoicing, marked by much good cheer and by the chanting of many mqbulud or Arabic hymns and discourses about the life of Muhammad. In consequence of this great festival the name mavlud is often given to the whole month in preference to the orthodox Arabic description of Rabi'u'-l-awwaL Malays, who do like long Arabic words, sometimes use the ex- pression "the four months with the same name" when speaking of the months Rabi'u-l-awwal, llabi'u-'l-akhir, Jamcbdu-l-awwal and Jawwdu-l-akhir.

The names are not the same, but they seem to possess certain family likenesses and are all equally unpronounceable. The next great Moslem holiday is the 27th day of the seventh month, Rajab, the anniversary of the Prophet's journey to heaven. It is a great occasion for chanting and prayer and it is commemorated by all Malays of piety and learning. The eighth month,. Shaaban, is rendered dismal by the approach of the ninth, the Fasting Month.

The fifteenth night of Shaaban is believed to be the time when the Almighty shakes the Tree of Life causing the fall of leaves that represent the lives of men. Through- out this night in some parts of Arabia the mosques are thronged with agonised suppliants appealing to the Almighty to allow their lives to be prolonged through- out the coming year. Such scenes are rare in the Peninsula.

They represent the days of preparation for the Malay Lent and should be marked by ceremonial ablutions to purify the soul and by much food to fortify the body. They are soon over, and the Great Fast begins. Throughout the month of Ramazcm a Moslem is forbidden between sunrise and sunset to eat, drink, chew, smoke or swallow. It is a time of misery, toiti- gated by the possibility of sleeping all day and feasting all night.

During the whole of this period the Spirits of Evil are believed to be chained up, so that the supersti- tious Malay can and does go about at night without fear of ghostly visitants. As each sunset approaches a faithful few find their way to the mosque and await in prayer and meditation the exact moment when they will be permitted to break their fast.

When sunset comes the worshippers share a light meal of rice-gruel kanji buka puasa before returning to their homes. The whole of the month is treated as a sort of a religious retreat, during which great princes like the Sultan of Perak offer a generous hospitality to the pious poor who flock to the palace-assemblies.

All through the night there may be heard the long wailing souud of the Arabic chants with which the devotees beguile the weary hours, At last the dawn approaches, the last long meal is taken, and the exhausted worshipper curls up on the floor in sleep.

As the end of the month approaches, the fervour of devotion becomes more intense, the special Arabic chants tarawih become longer, and the strain becomes more cruel. The 26th night is the " Night of Power " l 1 LailatuH-kadir. It is the culminating point of the Bamazan devotions. After the "Night of Power " the weary worshipper scans the horizon anxiously for a sight of the new moon that is to put an end to his long-drawn troubles. The new moon comes at last; the Great Fast is followed by the Great Feast.

Every Malay dons his finest garments, calls on all his friends, gives his family the best dinner he can afford, sends small gifts of cakes to his European acquaintances and apologizes to his seniors for any offence that he may have committed during the past year. The rejoicings go on for the first three days of the tenth month, Shaunoal.

The next great day is the 10th of the twelfth month, Dzu'l-kijjah. It is the month of the Pilgrimage. On this 10th day the pilgrims at Mecca visit a place called the Mina Bazaar, near Mount Arafat, and offer up a sacrifice to mark the conclusion of the Haj. The day is known in the Straits as the hari raya haji. It is the anniversary of his pilgrimage. On this day the haji — who is often a humble Javanese gardener working in some Singapore or Penang compound — puts on the gorgeous robes and turban of the Arab, takes a holiday and astonishes his employer by his sudden magnificence.

The transformation does not last long. This festival is the last of the Moslem year. The Malay possesses another year, a solar year, with holidays and festivals that have no connection with religion. It begins with some definite sign — the height of the Pleiades above the horizon or the seasonal ripen- ing of some fruit 1 — telling the ryot that the time for planting is at hand. The true Malay year is a sort of farmer's almanac.

Its first festival is marked by the reading of prayers, the burning of incense, and the singing of chants over the mother-seed that is to be used in the rice-nursery. The calendar is marked by further festivals at every stage of cultivation — at the sowing, the transplanting and the harvesting. It is supplemented by special holidays, when mimic fighting or mock-propitiation is used to get the better of the ghostly denizens of the district who prey upon the crops.

This solar calendar is only unsatisfactory because it is unauthorised and uncontrolled by any supreme authority, so that its details vary in every part of the Peninsula. It is the relic of an old agricultural religion and belongs properly to the province of Folk- lore and Malay Belief. None the less its holidays are observed and its feasts are well attended. The exact day for each event is fixed by the local pawang, but it turns upon the state of the crops and the details of the padi-planting industry.

The industry is the subject of a special pamphlet and need not be considered here. One thing alone must be discussed: how does rice-planting pay? The whole of Malay life turns on this industry and the crucial point in it is one about 1 The ptrah fruit. Hale was appealing for a reduction of taxation, and in his anxiety to forestall any criticism of his figures he made out a strong case against himself.

His figures seem too high. In a most interesting experiment was made in Krian by order of the Director of Agriculture. Eight small pieces of land were marked off and cultivated in different ways in order to test the relative effectiveness of different processes of planting.

The bulkiest crop gantang to the acre was obtained from the land cultivated by Banjarese according to their own native methods. Some instruc- tive differences were noticed in the three other fields cultivated by Banjarese on their own lines as modified in some small detail by the Director.

The average for the four Banjarese fields was gantang per acre. A field cultivated by Tamils gave a poorer result. A field treated with bone manure gave a miserable crop gantang to the acre ; selection of local seed by- weight was a failure gantang to the acre , and the importation of special seed from Ceylon resulted in a complete fiasco. The local ryots, who saw in these ex- periments an attempt to improve on their own methods, summed up the situation with the pithy proverb that it is useless to teach swimming to ducks.

The crop of gantang was declared to be a fair crop for the locality. Hale's estimated price of 8 cents per gantang is also rather high. If we set against this sum the tithe taken by the mosque, the cost of buffaloes if used for ploughing , and the money-lender's interest at 24 per cent. As a matter of fact, it does pay. A loan at 24 per cent, is not a business transaction, nor does a Malay borrow money to open up new land ; indeed, he could not get his loan till he has cultivated his land and secured his title.

He borrows money for some wedding-ceremony or afl security for a friend ; and we ought not to lay at the door of the rice-growing industry the improvidence and recklessness of individual ryots. Rice-growing is not the Malay peasant's sole means of livelihood. He usually has his little holding with its thirty or forty cocount trees round his house. If he resides near the sea he can earn an' appreciable amount by working as a fisherman. If he lives near a forest he may gather and sell rattans and other jungle produce.

In some places he can make great profits by cutting the nipah palms and making house-roofing. If his house is near a high road he may keep a cart or carriage and earn an occasional dollar by letting it out on hire. In many cases he has some special source of income of his own — he may be a mosque-official or a Koran-teacher or a school-master or a smith. Separately considered these sources of profit amount to very little; collectively they mean a great deal.

As it is, the Malay peasant is never likely to furnish a plentiful supply of cheap labour ; he is far too well-off for that. He may take odd jobs and small contracts, but he will not consent to exchange his lot for that of a regular wage-earner on an estate. Why, indeed, should he? His life is varied, pleasant, and healthy ; it supplies him with all that he needs ; it allows him ample leisure and absolute personal freedom.

All that is necessary is the choice of a suitable season — the month after the harvest — when everyone is at leisure and the granaries are full. Agriculture is the soul of Malay life. When a Malay becomes so ill that the ministrations of the local herbalists are of no avail he sends for the pawang. Now the paivang is a very unorthodox person : historically he is the priest of an older religion and theoretically a trafficker with evil spirits and a dabbler in the blackest of black art.

To the pious dignitaries of the mosque the pawang is an abomination, because he represents the accredited agent of the Devil. But the sick man is not likely to stand upon such ceremony ; believing as he does that all sickness comes from the Evil One he will not be deterred by any rules of propriety from entering into negotiations with his tormentor. He sends for the paivang.

The British motor vessel Santhla brought who left by train for Canton. Another are leaving for Canton by sea today. Almost 1, more Chinese repatriates are. The Arcado. Page 2. May 6. For this we have to thank the planter over the way, who sent over an Indian mandore, some of whose Javanese labourers were expert thatchers. The attaps near. Ankles Puffy Backache, Kidneys Strained! Page 3. Sir Frankl. Tan Jwee Ting Faquir Mohamed. Sat Lt -Col. A young woman. A Malayan Railway official told the Sunday Times this morning that the.

Sat Brigadier LH O. Jorore Bahru. Rice Is dearer by about five rents a gantang while brown sugar. The airmen replace a similar number in Singapore who. Karim bin Adanl. Parties of air training corps radets from all parts of the Commonwealth. We have. Bethesda ; 11 Close, f a. JM, Page 4. Exiles from the Lion City remember ANY Saturday A night, in a quiet suburb of the Australian city of Melbourne, a number of people may be observed to arrive separately between the hours of seven and 8 p.

Intolerance is the besetting sin of moral fervour. N Whitehead. People not only like you for what you are, but also for your individual attitude to them. No extra charge! Full-size berths free to Honolulu only. Page 5. These quack eye-cures, claimed by their manufacturers to cure any form of eye. Lee Soon Lee. The opium It was alleged, was found when the taxi waj searched at a. Appearing before Mr. P Jack. Kuala Lumpur.

Dilbahadur Gurung and Rifleman Birkhabahadur Thapa. Three other awards. North Borneo, and Sarawak from June 1 this year. Letters will be reduced from 25 cents per half ounce to 15 rents, light air. Sat —A large scale savings campaign has been organised in the Federation by the post office savings bank according to a Government statement today. Pamphlets, posters, films and broadcasts have been prepared and the scheme should be in. Sat— The Penang Coroner, Mr. A tin of caustic soda was. One British soldier was fatally wounded and.

Mr Scuiiy joined the choir at the Cathedral of Good Shepherd at. Kuantan Sat U. Karupaya and R. Mangayagi, a year-old girl, faced a summons charge in Kuantan of assaulting Maria Pushpan in the Kuantan Hospital barracks.

Heaviest traffic is between Singapore and Penang, and the volume of traffic in recent months constitutes a record. They say that it is unlucky for a person who has no tuberculosis to go for an x-ray as he might offend the Cods of Heaven and. William E. Robert Tilley at the Singapore Harbour Board yesterday shortly after midnight. Inspector M. Soh Hee Koe. Tan Thiam ,. Cold Storage bread has extra Vitamin B Only the finest ingredients are used.

It Is mjd under tha most hygienic conditions and it wrapped. Page 6. Page 7. She flew 4, miles from Florida to do. Sometimes being English, but not conservative, mind, not conservative, I wonder whatever will they mix up next? I hate purposely chosen recipes which cam. Designed to. Page 8. Such attire, she f.

II I Vtftf the sreen or Tell her you love her The reason for this being that she wanted to be fair to another boy whom the had known a long. First, lot us examine the Intellectual approach. You pick a subject at which you are fairly well Informed. Television in Britain has started a new stunt, putting an overweight on a strict diet and televising her from time to time over a period of rnonUas so that all may know tee result of the treatment The total weight taken oft.

Your grandfather has such bright and perfect teeth, my ton, because he has always fused Gibbs Dentifrice. You know how good it tastes, too, and it costs me so little.. Oleh itu, jawatankuasa mengekalkan sebahagian daripada istiadat ini untuk menggunakan rakit dikenali sebagai 'Balai Gambang', yang menyaksikan Tuanku menziarah lima makam di sepanjang Sungai Perak semasa pergerakan Balai Gambang dari Pasir Salak ke Teluk Intan," katanya.

Wanita mengandung atau yang uzur datang haid dinasihatkan agar tidak hadir pada istiadat Tabal Pusaka ini, yang bermula pada pukul 9 malam dan berakhir pada tengah malam. Ini bukan bermaksud ada diskriminasi terhadap golongan wanita, tetapi merupakan adat turun-temurun," katanya.

Terdahulu, Mohd Zahidi berkata satu jawatankuasa induk pertabalan telah diwujudkan susulan mesyuarat Dewan Negara Perak ke yang bersidang pada 20 Jun dan dipengerusikan Sultan Nazrin sendiri. The Myanmar military might have real weapons but some anti-coup protesters have guns of their own -- showing off their ripped biceps as they pose with "free Aung San Suu Kyi" posters. Parly added that France had exclusive economic zones in the Indo-Pacific region, and intended to protect its sovereignty and interests there.

Beijing has overlapping territorial claims in the waters with several neighbours, including the Philippines, Vietnam and Malaysia. Parly said at the Shangri-La Dialogue in June that Paris would continue to sail in the South China Sea more than twice a year and urged other like-minded countries to follow to maintain open access in the waters. The islands, which China calls the Nansha Islands, were once occupied by France.

Copyright Tribecar, a start-up founded in in Singapore, wants to attract more users to car-sharing with low costs and convenience. The United States distanced itself Tuesday from a theory propagated by former president Donald Trump that Covid came from a Chinese laboratory and voiced support for WHO researchers. What does it take to save a million dollars in your CPF Account as your retirement plan?

You may have heard about a Singaporean who accumulated a million dollars in CPF savings. A French nuclear attack submarine was among two navy ships that recently conducted a patrol through the South China Sea, its defence minister announced, in a move likely to anger Beijing, which claims most of the strategic waters as its territory. New Zealand announced the suspension of high-level military and political contacts with Myanmar Tuesday, the first major international move to isolate the country's ruling junta following a coup.

A WHO expert sent to China to probe the coronavirus hit out at US intelligence on Covid as his team headed home with few answers about the origin of a pandemic that was forcing more clampdowns in some of the hardest-hit parts of the world. A Chinese national is set to be charged for allegedly importing kg of undeclared meat products without a valid import license.

Myanmar's military raided the Yangon headquarters of ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi's party late Tuesday, officials said, as the United States joined the UN in "strongly" condemning violence against protesters demanding a return to democracy.

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Sign in. Log into your account. Forgot your password? Create an account. Sign up. Password recovery. Recover your password. Sunday, January 31, Get help. Home Bagan Datuk Beting Beras Baginda telah memperkenan permintaan tersebut dan mengarahkan putera keduanya iaitu Raja Muzaffar Shah ke Perak. Sewaktu Bahtera baginda menghampiri di kuala Sungai Perak dan sampai ke kawasan Beting Beras Basah, bahtera baginda telah dipukul ombak yang besar dan terdampar secara tiba-tiba diatas satu beting ditengah lautan tersebut.

Baginda telah mengarahkan supaya dibuangkan ke laut barang-barang yang berat, namun laut tetap bergelora. Lalu baginda pun berseru :. Sultan Muzzaffar lantas mengambil mahkota baginda lalu membuangnya ke dalam laut. Hanis je makan, aku ke ruang tamu untuk lepak-lepak dengan family aku.

Dok sedap tengah lepak-lepak tu, tiba-tiba kak ipar aku pengsan. Aku dah agak dah sebab apa. Sebab banyak kali terjadi dah. Kami yang handle pun dah rasa biasa. Relax je handle. Cuma kali ni agak beruntung sebab angah aku ada sekali. Angah aku pun mulalah lafazkan bacaan-bacaan surah al-Quran yang dia belajar. Habis je baca, angah aku cuba untuk bercakap dengan kak ipar aku.

Macam-macam angah tanya, tapi tidak berjawab. Kak ipar aku hanya merenung tajam muka angah. Aku tahu dah yang renung angah tu bukan kak ipar aku, tapi benda tu. Lebih setengah jam jugaklah bertanya dan tak berjawab tu. Memang degil benda tu. Fed up jugaklah tunggu dia nak jawab tu. Tiba-tibaw adik perempuan aku tanya, kau siapa? Datang dari mana? Nak apa? Terus kak ipar aku toleh ke arah adik aku, renung lagi sekali. Tak sampai tiga minit, adik aku ulang balik soalan dia tadi dengan nada marah.

Kau yang panggil aku tadi dekat jeti beting beras basah. Aku dayang istana! Terkejut kami dengar jawapan dia. Tak sangka kami bawak balik dayang istana. Angah suruh dia balik ke jeti semula, dia melawan kata tak nak balik. Angah mulakan bacaan dia. Dayang tu mula meraung-raung.

Degil jugaklah, tak nak keluar dari badan kak ipar aku. Senja dah masa tu. Dekat luar pulak angin agak kuat. Aku hanya lihat je sebab dayang tu tak mengganas pun. Aku berdiri depan pintu utama, tu yang aku tahu angin agak kuat. Dayang tu tetap degil tak nak balik. Angah aku cakap dekat kami semua, dah tak ada cara lain yang dia tahu melainkan panggil ketua dayang ni datang ambil dayang.

Kami kata buat apa yang patut. Angah mulakan bacaan dia lagi. Angin dekat luar ni betul-betul makin kuat. Langit pun nampak gelap tiba-tiba. Sekali bedentum petir panah betul-betul dekat depan pintu, area laman rumah.

Melompat aku tekejut dan berlari ke belakang sikit. Terus kak ipar aku terbaring. Cuaca pun berubah serta-merta. Terus elok. Tak ada angin yang kuat macam tadi. Kak ipar aku pun terus sedar dalam keadaan terpinga-pinga. Aku pun tanya angah, apa yang jadi? Angah cerita, yang petir tadi tu, panglima istana jin di beting beras basah. Panglima tu marah dekat dayang tu.

Angah kata, confirm dayang tu kena lanyak sebab kacau orang. Angah pun ceritalah, masa dekat beting beras basah tu, dia nampak istana besar dekat situ. Memang istana jin ada dekat situ, katanya. Sebab tu dia pesan, jangan seronok sangat. Sepupu aku pun ceritalah yang dia nampak ada seorang perempuan tua, tapi cantik sangat-sangat, pakai baju ala-ala dayang istana. Dia berdiri belakang kak ipar aku masa kak ipar aku tengah makan dekat dapur tu.

Sepupu aku diam sajalah. Tak bagitahu siapa-siapa sebab dia ingat benda tu singgah macam tu je. Tak sangka pulak dia jadi macam ni. So, apa-apa pun kami semua legalah yang benda ni selesai. Walaupun agak lama nak selesaikan dan agak nasib baik sebab panglima istana tu marah dekat dayang dan bukan dekat kami.

Kalau marah dekat kami, tak tahulah apa jadi. Sampai sekarang aku masih ingat lagi bunyi dan cahaya petir tu. Betul-betul real petir tu panah depan mata aku. Maaflah kalau cerita tak menarik dan tak seram. Nama pun cubaan kali pertama, kan?

Harap admin Fiksyen Shasha dan pembaca dapat terima cerita aku. Terima kasih sekali lagi. Nama ko poco?? Ko pandai menari poco-poco tk? Aku pandai menari tarian kuda… Opp.. Opp… Opp.. Jangan main-main kat jeti tu lain kali ye. Haii delu…. Masing2 dok mbekk mbekk kat fs ni kita pun jadi gatal tangan… Hahaha. Arahan itu dituruti Raja Muzaffar.

Selepas itu barulah ribut taufan reda dan kapal boleh belayar. Sejak itu, Perak tidak memakai gelaran Tengku Mahkota memandangkan mahkotanya sudah dibuang sebaliknya diganti dengan gelaran Raja Muda. BH original perak tapi x tahu pasal sejarah2 Beting Beras Basah ni..

Kalau ade info lagi share la.. Buat 1 post pasal sejarah ni macam cik Nana.. Thanks for sharing. Keep it up. Nice one. Sama le dgn kite. First time dengar. Hai, maya hanum. Tapi… Yg akk x pueh hati tu, sape yg seru die…??? Ape yg org tu dh buat sampaikan dayang tu rase diseru…???? Kay…jawab taauuu… Kang akk panggil panglima soh marah ko citer x clear… Haaa…. Ye lh kan kak yulie.. Yg part ne adik aku ulang balik soalan dia tadi dengan nada marah.