Malay Culture and Language

Malaysian Names

The Malaysian Chinese are the only large ethnic group in Malaysia to use family names.  Most other groups use a personal name and then a patronym name.   For men, the patronym consists of the title bin (from So, if Osman has a son called Musa, Musa will be known as Musa bin Osman. For women, the patronym consists …

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Malaysian History

The Buddhist Kingdom of Srivijaya ruled Malaysia from the 9th-13th centuries.  Then the Hindu Kingdom of Majapahit took over.  The state of Malacca ruled by a Muslim prince ruled afterward.  This is when Islam spread throughout the area. The first Europeans to arrive were the Portuguese. They took over Malacca in 1511 and then controlled the …

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Malaysian Games

There are many different kinds of martial arts.  Silat and Tomoi (a form of kickboxing) are traditional, popular versions. Kite flying (wau-flying) is a traditional game. Competitions take place with judges giving out awards for craftsmanship.  Some kites are made to make a sound as they are pulled to fly in the air. Sepak raga …

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Malaysian Food

The different regions are known for their dishes.  However, one thing the Malay cooking has in common is the use of spices.  Coconut milk is important in many of the dishes. Shrimp paste (belacan) is also used to make a condiment called sambal.  The paste is added to chillies, onions, and garlic.  Nearly every meal …

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Malaysian Culture

The flag of Malaysia is known as the Jalur Gemilang (meaning Stripes of Glory).  There are 14 red and white stripes to stand for the equality of the 13 member states and the federal government.  A crescent moon and a 14-point star stand for the unity among them. The crescent moon represents Islam, the country’s …

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