Tag: Sumatra

Colonial Ruins in Padang

Colonial godown next to railways By Freek Colombijn The American anthropologist Ann Stoler argues that the ‘ruins of empire’, or ‘imperial debris’, must be studied less as ‘dead…

An Armenian Source on Medieval Sumatra/Srivijaya

        There aren’t many Eastern Christian sources on ancient Indo-Malaysia/Nusantara, but there’s no reason to neglect them nor to believe that they’re less valuable than Marco Polo. In…

An Armenian Source on Medieval Sumatra/Srivijaya

        There aren't many Eastern Christian sources on ancient Indo-Malaysia/Nusantara, but there's no reason to neglect them nor to believe that they're less valuable than Marco Polo. In…

An Armenian Source on Medieval Sumatra/Srivijaya

        There aren’t many Eastern Christian sources on ancient Indo-Malaysia/Nusantara, but there’s no reason to neglect them nor to believe that they’re less valuable than Marco Polo. In…

‘Lamori’ & ‘Lamuri’

      A short while ago, I wrote that Odoric of Pordenone’s name for the north of Sumatra, Lamori, came from the Arabic al-Rāmnī, a name commonly given to…

‘Lamori’ & ‘Lamuri’

      A short while ago, I wrote that Odoric of Pordenone's name for the north of Sumatra, Lamori, came from the Arabic al-Rāmnī, a name commonly given to…

‘Lamori’ & ‘Lamuri’

      A short while ago, I wrote that Odoric of Pordenone’s name for the north of Sumatra, Lamori, came from the Arabic al-Rāmnī, a name commonly given to…

Polo & Odoric on the Pole Star

        One of the many marvels noted by both Odoric of Pordenone and Marco Polo is the disappearance of the north star, presumably Polaris (α Ursae Minoris), when…

Polo & Odoric on the Pole Star

        One of the many marvels noted by both Odoric of Pordenone and Marco Polo is the disappearance of the north star, presumably Polaris (α Ursae Minoris), when…

Polo & Odoric on the Pole Star

        One of the many marvels noted by both Odoric of Pordenone and Marco Polo is the disappearance of the north star, presumably Polaris (α Ursae Minoris), when…

Chinese Sources on Indonesia – Romanisation!

       Perhaps the most important language for working out a narrative history of ancient Indonesia and Malaysia, besides Malay and Javanese, is classical Chinese. It might actually be…

Marco Polo on Sago (Metroxylon sagu)

      There is no single authoritative edition or manuscript detailing Marco Polo's travels. The consensus is that the first editions of what became Le Devisement du Monde were…

Niccolo de’ Conti (and others) on the Lontar Palm

      Yesterday I put up a post about Niccolo de' Conti, one of the more interesting Europeans to visit Indonesia before the sixteenth century. His account…

Niccolò de’ Conti on Malays

      Niccolò de' Conti was a fifteenth-century Italian traveller who visited parts of what is now Indonesia, including, apparently, Badan, probably meaning 'Banda', the small archipelago …

Island Southeast Asian Geology & Volcanic Explosions

I've been trying to read as much as I can about the geological history of Southeast Asia for the book I'm working on. It's a fascinating topic: island…