Kota Kapur inscription

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Kota Kapur inscription
Prasasti Kota Kapur.jpg
Kota Kapur inscription pinnacle
Size177 cm height, 32 cm width on base and 19 cm width on top
WritingPallawa script in Old Malay
Createdfirst day of half moon Vaisakha on the year 608 Saka (28 February 686 CE)
Discoveredwestern coast of Bangka Island, offcoast South Sumatra, Indonesia (1892)
Present locationNational Museum of Indonesia, Jakarta

Kota Kapur Inscription is an inscription discovered in western coast of Bangka Island, offcoast South Sumatra, Indonesia, by J.K. van der Meulen in December 1892. It was named after "Kotakapur" village, the location where this archaeological findings were discovered. This inscription is using old Malay language written in Pallava letters. It was one of the oldest surviving written evidence of ancient Malay language. The inscription dated first day of half moon Vaisakha on the year 608 Saka (28 February 686 CE), mentioned about the curse of whomever committed treason against Srivijaya and the beginning of Srivijayan invasion against Java.

The inscription was first examined and dated by H. Kern, a Dutch epigrapher that worked for Bataviaasch Genootschap in Batavia. At first he thought that Srivijaya was the name of a king.

George Coedes noted the name on the inscriptions was that of Srivijaya, a Buddhist kingdom in 638-86, "that had just conquered the hinterland of Jambi and the island of Bangka and was preparing to launch a military expedition against Java." The name corresponds to Yijing's.[1]:82


Kota Kapur inscriptions is one of the five inscriptions edicted by Dapunta Hyang, the ruler of Srivijaya. Most of this inscriptions contains curse for crime, trespassing and treasons against Srivijaya. The contents was translated by Coedes:

Original Script[edit]

  1. Siddha titam hamba nvari i avai kandra kayet ni paihumpaan namuha ulu lavan tandrun luah makamatai tandrun luah vinunu paihumpaan hakairum muah kayet ni humpa unai tunai.
  2. Umentern bhakti ni ulun haraki. unai tunai kita savanakta devata mahardika sannidhana. manraksa yan kadatuan çrivijaya. kita tuvi tandrun luah vanakta devata mulana yan parsumpahan.
  3. paravis. kadadhi yan uran didalanna bhami paravis hanun. Samavuddhi lavan drohaka, manujari drohaka, niujari drohaka talu din drohaka. tida ya.
  4. Marppadah tida ya bhakti. tida yan tatvarjjawa diy aku. dngan diiyan nigalarku sanyasa datua. dhava vuathana uran inan nivunuh ya sumpah nisuruh tapik ya mulan parvvanda datu çriwi-
  5. jaya. Talu muah ya dnan gotrasantanana. tathapi savankna yan vuatna jahat. makalanit uran. makasuit. makagila. mantra gada visaprayoga. udu tuwa. tamval.
  6. Sarambat. kasihan. vacikarana.ityevamadi. janan muah ya sidha. pulan ka iya muah yan dosana vuatna jahat inan tathapi nivunuh yan sumpah talu muah ya mulam yam manu-
  7. ruh marjjahati. yan vatu nipratishta ini tuvi nivunuh ya sumpah talu, muah ya mulan. saranbhana uran drohaka tida bhakti tatvarjjava diy aku, dhava vua-
  8. tna niwunuh ya sumpah ini gran kadachi iya bhakti tatvjjava diy aku. dngan di yam nigalarku sanyasa dattua. çanti muah kavuatana. dngan gotrasantanana.
  9. Samrddha svasthi niroga nirupadrava subhiksa muah vanuana paravis chakravarsatita 608 din pratipada çuklapaksa vulan vaichaka. tatkalana
  10. Yan manman sumpah ini. nipahat di velana yan vala çrivijaya kalivat manapik yan bhumi java tida bhakti ka çrivijaya.


  1. Success ! (followed probably by cursing mantra formula that cannot be understood or translated)
  2. All oh thou gods almighty, all that gathered to protect Kadatuan (palace/kingdom) Srivijaya; all of thou gods that starts the beginning of the swear of all swear (curse)!!
  3. If in this lands, the realm under Kadatuan rule, there is a rebel, conspired with rebel, talk to rebel, and listen to rebel;
  4. know the rebel, dishonor, ungrateful, unfaithful to me or those whom I've appointed as datu; may all people that commit those deeds will die caused by curse or fell under expedition (war campaign) against them wage by a datu or led by several datus od Srivijaya, and let them;
  5. punished altogether with their clan and family. Moreover, let the evil deeds; such as disturbing other's soul, make other sick, cause people to suffer madness, using mantra (magic spell), poison, using upas (poison), tuba (poison), and ganja (marijuana),
  6. saramwat (?), pekasih (love charm), force themself upon others, and many other things, may all that deed will not succeed and strike back to those whom guilty for that evil deeds; may all die because of curse. Also those whom spread evil rumors to sway people.
  7. May those whom destroy the stone placed in this place also die because of the curse and directly punished. May all murderer, rebel, all of those ungrateful and unfaithful to me, all the performer of those deeds
  8. die because of curse. But for those whom obey and faithful to me and those whom I have appointed as datu, may all their efforts are blessed, also their clan and family
  9. with success, welfare, good health, freed from disaster, abundance everything for all their lands! In the year 608 Saka, first day of half moon Vaisakha (28 February 686), in that time
  10. this curse is said; the carving took place during the Srivijaya army just departed to attack Java, which is not submit to Srivijaya.

The inscriptions was carved on a pinnacle stone with several sides, with 177 cm height, 32 cm width on base and 19 cm width on top.


Kota Kapur inscription was the first Srivijayan inscription discovered, long before the discovery of the Kedukan Bukit Inscription on 29 November 1920, and before the Talang Tuwo inscription that was discovered several days earlier on 17 November 1920.

The Kota Kapur inscription, together with other archaeological findings in the region, was the testament of Srivijaya era. It has opened a new horizon and revealed the history of Hindu-Buddhist era in that area. This inscription also uncovered the ancient society inhabiting the region during 6th and 7th century that clearly shows Hindu-Buddhist influence.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Coedès, George (1968). Walter F. Vella (ed.). The Indianized States of Southeast Asia. trans.Susan Brown Cowing. University of Hawaii Press. ISBN 978-0-8248-0368-1.
  2. ^ Penelitian di situs Depdiknas