Ken Dedes

Ken Dedes

Ken Dedes the first queen of Singhasari, she was the wife of Ken Arok, the first ruler of Singhasari, Java, Indonesia. She was later considered as the origin of lineage of kings that rule Java, the great mother of Rajasa dynasty, the royal family that rule Java from Singhasari to Majapahit era. Local tradition also mentioned her as the woman with extraordinary beauty, embodiment of such perfect beauty.

Most of the record of her life come from the account of Pararaton (The Book of Kings), which often mixed historical account with fictional supranatural tales and story. She was the daughter of a Buddhist monk, Mpu Purwa. According to tradition, Ken Dedes' exceptional and extraordinary beauty was famous throughout the land and attracted Tunggul Ametung, the ruler of Tumapel (now Singhasari district, East Java) whom later took her as his wife.

According to local story, Ken Dedes was kidnapped and forced to become Tunggul Ametung's wife while her father was gone meditating. Her father cursed Tunggul Ametung, saying he would be killed because of Ken Dedes' beauty. The curse became reality when Ken Arok succeed to assassinated Tunggul Ametung and took Ken Dedes as his wife.

According to Pararaton and local tradition, Ken Arok's unsurpation on Tunggul Ametung was caused by Ken Dedes exceptional beauty and charisma. On one occasion, Ken Arok happened to be standing close to where the royal carriage come to halt. Catching the glimpse of the young queen as she descended. When Ken Dedes' clothes accidentally were dissaranged, Ken Arok has a glance on her naked legs and thigh, he saw that her genital were 'shining'. A Brahmin, Lohgawe, told Ken Arok that this radiance was the sign that Ken Dedes bears the divine quality, she was the bearer of kings. The beauty of Ken Dedes was said to have been such perfection that whoever married her, regardless of his status, was inevitably destined to become king of kings. [cite book | last =Bullough | first =Nigel| title =Historic East Java: Remains in Stone| consulting editor: Mujiyono PH| publisher =ADLine Communications| date =Indonesian 50th independence day commemorative edition - 1995 | location =Jakarta| Printed in Singapore| pages =page 29 ] Ken Arok was motivated by that to murder and unsurped Tunggul Ametung.

Ken Arok later launch campaign and succeed to defeat Kertajaya, king of Kediri, and founded his own kingdom, Singhasari. Ken Dedes became his wife, the first queen of Singhasari. According to local beliefs, the statue of Prajnaparamita, the goddess of the transcendental wisdom in buddhist tradition, found in Cungkup Putri near Singhasari temple, was made in her likeness. Probably served as her mortuary deified statue.

Anusapati, Ken Dedes's son from Tunggul Ametung, her first husband, murdered Ken Arok and became the second ruler of Singhasari.



* Bullough, Nigel (Indonesian 50th independence day commemorative edition - 1995). Historic East Java: Remains in Stone. Jakarta: ADLine Communications.


ee also

*Ken Arok

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