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The Malays of Penang

The Malay Room (ground floor) renders a picture of the Penang Malays and the various adat and practices in their religion, Islam, and their culture. The artistic and intricate beauty of the Malay artifacts as well as various aspects of their cultural observances and characteristics of their entertainment forms are illustrated.

The Malay is by definition one who habitually speaks Malay, is a Muslim and practises Malay custom (adat). The earliest Malay settlers chose to stay in the rural areas of Penang and were engaged in agriculture and fishing during off-seasons.

The Islamic religion plays a pivotal role in the lives of Malays. Their culture is rich and their adat a way of life. The rich aspects of their lifestyle are featured in their wedding ceremonies and in their costumes and jewellery. Artifacts such as the kris and khat portray illustrations of artistry.

The Lebuh Acheh Mosque, which was built in 1808, is the oldest extant mosque in Penang. Architecturally, it reveals the influence of Chinese Muslim settlers on early Islamic buildings in Asia. There are also Anglo-Indian and Moorish characteristics.

Both the boria and bangsawan were very popular Malay entertainment. The boria originally contained religious overtones but gradually became a purely secular, proto-theatrical form of entertainment. The bangsawan were musical dramas often depicting court tales of nobility and heroism.

Barang Kemas Melayu Tradisional

Kemahiran pertukangan emas dan perak adalah sebahagian daripada kebudayaan Melayu sejak berkurun-kurun lamanya.

Ini adalah kerana emas dan perak telah dilombong di Tanah Melayu sejak zaman purba. Tradisi menghias diri dikalangan wanita mahupun lelaki menunjukkan pemakaian barang kemas yang tiada tolok bandingnya sejak dahulu lagi. Barang kemas menjadi pelengkap pakaian tradisional. Antara barang kemas yang digemari ialah cucuk sanggul, pending, gelang, kalung, kerongsang, sisir dan subang. Reka bentuk yang rumit dan halus buatannya serta corak yang berilhamkan alam semulajadi memperlihatkan kepakaran seni pertukangan tangan Melayu.

 Notes On My Native Land

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. . . from the early days

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The Museum Courtyard

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 The History Gallery

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The Captain Robert Smith Room &
 The William Daniell Room

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The Many Faces of Penang

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The Malays of Penang

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The Indians of Penang

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The Chinese of Penang

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The Baba Nyonya Culture

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The Streets of Penang

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Pada zaman Kesultanan Melaka (1400an -1511), para pembesar asing diwajibkan mempersembahkan buah tangan kepada Sultan sebagai menyampaikan hasrat kedatangan mereka. Hadiah tersebut terdiri daripada persalinan pakaian, bahan bertinta emas, habuk emas tulen, senjata Melayu atau duit-duit perak dari luar negeri.

Pakaian Melayu Tradisional

Pakaian tradisional menjadi pengenal bangsa orang yang memakainya. Sejak kurun kelima belas, pelbagai jenis kain didapati di Tanah Melayu melalui kegiatan perdagangan. Ini termasuklah kain kapas dan sutera dari negeri China, kain pelikat dari India, batik dari Jawa, kain Bugis dari Sulawesi, kain Limar dari Kemboja, Samarinda, Sumatera dan Acheh, dan songket dari Terengganu.

Orang Melayu Pulau Pinang menggunakan kain yang berbeza jenis untuk pakaian yang berlainan. Antara pakaian tersebut ialah baju kebaya labuh, baju pendek, baju Bandung, baju Kedah dan baju kurung.

Lelaki Melayu lazimnya memakai baju Melayu cekak musang, baju Melayu dan "kot asam pedas" yang ditiru daripada kampung Jawi. Pakaian yang bersulam kelengkang biasanya dipakai untuk peristiwa tertentu atau majlis rasmi. Kain yang bermutu tinggi dikhaskan juga untuk majlis-majlis sedemikian.

Pakaian sering juga dijadikan hadiah, terutamanya semasa majlis perkahwinan. Sulam kelingkam dapat dilihat pada kain selendang, baju kebaya pendek dan baju kebaya labuh.

Kain yang bersulam tangan sering dibuat oleh wanita Melayu, terutamanya yang tinggal di Seberang Perai. Sebilangan besar daripada mereka duduk di rumah untuk meningkatkan kemahiran mereka.

For enquiries and feedback regarding the Penang Museum & Art Gallery, kindly e-mail us at muzium@po.jaring.my

STATE MUSEUM BOARD: 2nd Floor, Dewan Sri Pinang, 10200 Penang
(Tel. & Fax. No: 604-2613144)

Web services + concept provided by Penang Insights.
Design + Editorial direction by Adrian Cheah & Chin Mun Woh, C-Square Sdn. Bhd.