Thursday, September 4, 2008

We are all Pendatangs...

The Mekong River, approximately 4180km in length, originated from Tibet and runs through Yunnan province of China, Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. Anthropologists traced the migration of Proto Malays, who were seafarers, to some 10,000 years ago when they sailed by boat (canoe or perahu) along the Mekong River from Yunnan to the South China Sea and eventually settled down at various places.

Doorframe of Yunnan 2006 and ancient Malay text found at Palembang's Kedukan Bukit 682CE.

Oldest Malay text. The Kedukan Bukit inscription of 682 CE found at Palembang and the modern Yunnan Dai minority's traditional writings were of the same language family, Pallava. Dai ethnic (or Dai minority) of Yunnan is one of the aboriginal inhabitants of modern Yunnan province of China. (Picture) is taken from Jinghong city of Yunnan, a modern doorframe with Dai minority texts & Chinese, at right is the ancient Kedukan Bukit inscription.

Hmmm ... isn't this what is taught in school about baju tradisional of a Malay woman, Batik Kebaya? But oops ... this picture above was not taken in Malaysia! Taken at Jinhong, Yunnan, China in 2004.


Inhabitants of early Yunnan can be traced back in history to nearly 170 million years ago from a homo erectus fossil, 'Yuanmou Man', which was unearthed in the 1960s. In year 221 BC, Qin Shihuang conquered Yunnan and unified China which has since become a province of China. They were the ancestors of rice eating peoples, with their culture of cultivating rice spreaded throughout the entire region. The native name of the Mekong River peoples' home in Yunnan is Xishuangbanna (Sipsongpanna) which literally means "twelve thousand rice fields", it is the home of the Dai minority. Xishuangbanna sits at a lower altitude than most of the Yunnan mountainous ranges.

Yunnan migration theory

The theory of Proto Malay originated from Yunnan is supported by R.H Geldern, J.H.C Kern, J.R Foster, J.R Logen, Slametmuljana and Asmah Haji Omar. The Proto Malay (Melayu asli) first arrived possessed agricultural skills while the second wave Deutero Malay (mixed blood) joined in around 1500bc and dwelled at coastlines, they have advanced fishery skills. During the migration, both intermarried with peoples of southern islands Java (Indonesian), also with aboriginal peoples of Australoid, Negrito and Melanesoid.

Mekong Delta

According to history of Khmer, the earliest known civilisation was the 1st century Indianised-Khmer culture of Funan, in the Mekong Delta. The Khmer empire of Angkor was the last before the kingdom fled to various places seeking refuge. Palembang and later Malacca were among the places. Archeological evidences found that inhabitants of early Cambodia were peoples of Neolithic culture. They possessed good technical skills while the more advanced groups who lived near the coast and in the lower delta of Mekong, cultivated irrigated rice. It is believed they were ancestors of inhabtants of insular Southeast Asia and islands of Pacific Ocean. They were also knowledged in iron, bronze works and possessed good navigational skills. (Source: Based on information from John F. Cady, Southeast Asia: Its Historical Development, New York, 1964.)

Cham-Malay relation

The similarity of Cambodian Cham language and Malay language can be found in names of places such as Kampong Cham, Kambujadesa, Kampong Chhnang, etc and Sejarah Melayu clearly mentioned a Cham community in Parameswara's Malacca around 1400s. Cham is related to the Malayo-Polynesian languages of Malaysia, Indonesia, Madagascar and the Philippines. In mid 1400s, when Cham was heavily defeated by the Vietnamese, some 120,000 were killed and in the 1600s the Champa king converted to Islam. In 1700s the last Champa Muslim king Pô Chien gather his people and migrated south to Cambodia while those along the coastline migrated to the nearest peninsula state Terengganu, approximately 500km or less by boat, some to Kelantan. Malaysian constitution recognises the Cham rights to Malaysian citizenship and their Bumiputra status. Read Cham people. Now that the history is interlinked, there is a big possiblity that Parameswara's family was Cham refugee who fled to Palembang before he fled to Tumasik and last to Malacca. Interestingly, one of the last Kings of Angkor of the Khmer Empire had the name Paramesvarapada.

All materials above taken from

1 comment:

adyseptember said...

Mr.Freddy thank for that post u collect from somewhere.

I'm a malay..
I'm happy born in this country.All race live in harmonic & peaceful.
the destiny.. ISLAM in malaysia. Thank to my god,ALLAH S.W.T make that..

This story about first malay around 10,000 year useful to me.But u not write/post complete.about Chinese history migration around 1900year ago in malaya.

"Whom are Pendatang...."

u cant change that... (history)
i know that it so abasement.This issue remain for all race... each other dont play with fire.We Grateful.. what our have & just forgive for all.