- Malays (ethnic group)
Infobox Ethnic group
group = Malay"Melayu"
poptime = c. 22 million
region1 = Majority populations
pop6 = 12.3 million (2006 estimate)
ref6 = lower| [ [https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/my.html CIA - The World Factbook - Malaysia ] ]
pop7 = 0.25 million (2006 estimate)
ref7 = lower| [ [https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/bx.html CIA - The World Factbook - Brunei ] ]
region8 = Minority populations
pop9 = 6.9 million (2000 census)
ref9 = lower|PDF| [http://www.pcgn.org.uk/Indonesia-%20Population&AdminDivs-%202003.pdf Indonesia: Population and Administrative Names] |460 KiB]
pop10 = 1.9 million (2006 estimate)
ref10 = lower| [http://lcweb2.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/r?frd/cstdy:@field(DOCID+th0052)]
pop11 = 0.45 million (2000 census)
ref11 = lower|PDF| [http://www.singstat.gov.sg/pubn/papers/people/c2000-population.pdf Singapore: Population Size and Growth] |23.8 KiB]
languages = Malay, Indonesian, Yawi, Thai
Islam(approx. 99.9%PDF| [http://www.singstat.gov.sg/pubn/papers/people/c2000adr-religion.pdf The Singapore Census of Population (2000): Advance Data Release 2] |21.8 KiB] cite web
title = The Malay of Malaysia
publisher = Bethany World Prayer Center
year = 1997
url = http://kcm.co.kr/bethany_eng/p_code3/1892.html
accessdate = 2008-07-28] cite web
title = The Diaspora Malay
publisher = Bethany World Prayer Center
year = 1997
url = http://kcm.co.kr/bethany_eng/clusters/8101.html
accessdate = 2008-07-28] )
Malaysian Malays, Malay Singaporean, Overseas Malays.
Malays ( _ms. Melayu) are an
ethnic groupof Austronesian peoples predominantly inhabiting the Malay Peninsula, the east coast of Sumatra, the coast of Borneo, and the smaller islands between these locations. The Malay ethnic group is distinct from the concept of a Malay race, which encompasses a wider group of people, including most of Indonesiaand the Philippines. The Malay languageis a member of the Austronesian family of languages.
The Encyclopedia of Malaysia, volume: Early History, has pointed out a total of 3 theories of the origin of Malay:
Yunnantheory, Mekongriver migration (published 1889)
New Guineatheory (published 1965)
Taiwantheory (published 1997)
The ancestor of Malays are believed to be
seafarerswho are well knowledged in Oceanography, they move around from island to island in great distances between New Zealandand Madagascar, and they served as navigation guide, crew and labour to Indian, Persian and Chinese traders for nearly 2000 years, and over the years they settled at various places and adopted various cultures and religions. Notable Malay seafarers of today are Mokenand Orang laut.
Some historians suggested they were descendants of Austronesian-speakers who migrated from the
Philippinesand originally from Taiwan. Malay culture reached its golden age during Srivijayantimes and they practiced Buddhism, Hinduism, and their native Animismbefore converting to Islam in the 15th century.
In the History of Jambi, the word Melayu originated from a river with name
Melayu Rivernear to Batang Hari Riverof today's Muara Jambi, Jambiprovince of Sumatra, Indonesia and even a Melayu Kingdomexisted from the record of Yi Jing(a Tang Dynasty Buddhist monk) and archaeological research of Jambi, large numbers of ancient artifacts and ancient architectures of the Melayu Kingdom have been found with photo evidence. However further tracing the root of the word, a small town in Tamil district appeared called "Malai Yur" which means "Land of Mountains" ("malai" means mountain and "yur" means land), a reference to the hilly nature of the Malay Archipelago. Other ancient Indian sources , the Puranatext, claimed "Malayadvipa" on Sumatra with the meaning 'dvipa' land surrounded by water, while the ancient Sanskritword Himalayameans 'snow mountain'. "Maleu-kolon" was used by Ptolemywhich was also derived from Sanskrit 'malayakom' or 'malaikurram', according to G. E. Gerini that was to refer to Tanjung Kuantan while Roland Bradell claimed it on Tanjung Penyabung, both in the peninsula. (see Tamil place names in Malaysia)
The word Melayu began in use during the time of Sultanate of Melaka, founded by the fleeing prince
Parameswara, from the declining Melayu Kingdom of Srivijayain Palembang. And the word was in popular use in 17th century onwards.
European colonization, the word "Malay" was adopted into English via the Dutch word "Malayo", itself from Portuguese "Malaio", which originates from the Malay word "Melayu". According to one popular theory, the word Melayu means "migrating" or "fleeing", which might refer to the high mobility of these people across the region (cf. Javanese verb 'mlayu' means "to run", cognate with Malay verb 'melaju', means "to accelerate") or perhaps the original meaning is "distant, far away" (cf. Tagalog 'malayo') with the root word 'layo', which means 'distance' or 'far' in Tagalog and some Malayo-Polynesian languages.
Alternate uses of the term
The name "Malay" is sometimes used to describe the concept of a
Malay race, which includes all the ethnic groups inhabiting the Malay Archipelagoand which are not of older aboriginal stock.
The term "Melayu" (Malay person in the Malay Language), in the Federal Constitution of Malaysia, refers to a person who professes
Islam, habitually speaks the Malay language, conforms to Malay custom and who has at least one ancestor from the Malay Peninsula or Singapore. [Federal Constitution, Malaysia (Article 160)]
Early Chinese text "Ma-la-yu" (Chinese: 末羅瑜) written by monk
Yi Jingwas an independent kingdom. In the later Mongol Yuandynasty and Mingdynasty, the word "Ma-La-Yu" was mentioned often (in the history of China) to refer to a nation from southern sea with different spelling due to the change of dynasty.
* (Chinese: 木剌由) - Bok-la-yu, Mok-la-yu
* (Chinese: 麻里予兒) - Ma-li-yu-er
* (Chinese: 巫来由) - Oo-lai-yu (traced from the written source of monk
* (Chinese: 無来由) - Wu-lai-yu
Kedah and Melaka literature
According to Kedah Annals, Kadaram (Kedah Kingdom 630-1136) was founded by Maharaja Derbar Raja of Gemeron,
Persiaaround 630 CE, and also alleged that the bloodline of Kedah royalties coming from Alexander The Great. The other Malay literature, Sejarah Melayutoo alleged that they were the descendants of Alexander The Great.
Combination of the colonial Kambujas of
Hindu- Buddhismfaith, the Indo-Persianroyalties and traders as well as traders from southern Chinaand elsewhere along the ancient trade routes, these peoples together with the aborigine Negrito Orang Asliand native seafarers and Proto Malays intermarried each others and thus a new group of peoples was formed and became to be known as the Deutero Malays, today they are commonly known as the Malays.
Ethnic group vs. cultural sphere
The term "Malay" can refer to the ethnic group who live in the Malay peninsula (which include the southernmost part of Thailand called
Pataniand Satun) and east Sumatraas well as the cultural sphere that encompass a large part of the archipelago.
The Malay ethnic group is the majority in
Malaysiaand Bruneiand a sizable minority in Singaporeand Indonesia, and they form the majority in the five southernmost provinces of Thailand which historically made up the old Malay kingdom of Patani. This people speak various dialects of Malay language. The peninsular dialect as spoken in the Malaysian states of Pahang, Selangor and Johor is the standard speech among Malays in Malaysia and Singapore. In the Malay peninsula, the Kelantanese dialect in its purest form is the most difficult to understand. Other peninsula dialects include the Kedah-Perlis dialect, the Melakan dialect, the Minangkabau dialect of Negri Sembilan, the Perak dialect and the Trengganu dialect. In Thailand, Malays of Satun speak the Kedah-Perlis dialect while those in the Patani provinces speak the Kelantanese lingo. Meanwhile, the Riaudialect of eastern Sumatra has been adopted as a national tongue, Indonesian ("Bahasa Indonesia"), for the whole Indonesian population.The ethnic Malay have had a Muslimculture since the 15th century. [ [http://www.aseanfocus.com/publications/history_malaysia.html aseanfocus.com] ]
In Malaysia, the majority of the population is made up of ethnic Malays while the minorities consist of southern Chinese (e.g. Hokkien and Cantonese), southern Indians (mainly
Tamils), non-ethnic Malay indigenous peoples (e.g. Ibanand Kadazan), as well as Eurasians.
Malay cultural influences filtered out throughout the archipelago, such as the monarchical state, religion (
Hinduism/ Buddhismin the first millennium AD, Islamin the second millennium), and the Malay language. The influential Srivijayakingdom had unified the various ethnic groups in southeast Asia into a convergent cultural sphere for almost a millennium. It was during that time that vast borrowing of Sanskrit words and concepts facilitated the advanced linguistic development of Malay as a language. Malay was the regional lingua franca, and Malay-based creole languages existed in most trading ports in Indonesia.
*Malays in Singapore
Anti-Malay racism, racial prejudice against ethnic Malays.
Malay wedding, a wedding ceremony in accordance with Malay customs.
* [http://www.sharpblades.net/index.php?page=articles&catid=3&id=6 Dayak Parang] - Find out more about one of the Malay's most used swords
* [http://www.rockmekong.org/media-cov/News2002/queens.htm Queens of Pattani]
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