Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Munshi Abdullah

Munshi Abdullah bin Abdul Kadir (1796-1850)
An Indian Muslim translator and chronicler who was born in Kg Pali, Malacca. 
Worked in British Malacca. Worked with Stamford Raffles in Singapore.

Full name: Abdullah bin Abdul Kadir
Call name: Munshi Abdullah, Abdullah Munshi
Born: 1796 Kg Pali, Melaka
Deceased: 1854 Jeddah .... while on his way to perform Hajj (aged 54 years)
Burial: Jeddah or Masjid Kg Keling?
Education: Quran, Arabic, Malay and English
Occupation: Translator for the British colonial Government in Malacca and Singapore

Parents
Father: Abdul Kadir
Mother: Unknown
Sibs: All siblings before him died. Only he survived.

Family
Wife: Unknown
Children: Unknown


Munshi Abdullah is Abdullah bin Abdul Kadir. He was born in 1796 in Kampung Pali, Malacca. (In another account, he was born in 1797.)

Kg Pali has been renamed Kg Masjid, and now Kg Ketek. Ketek is the Minang or Malay word for small (kecil) or short (katik or ketek). People here also call this village Kekek. Kekek is a type of fish found in the nearby river, Sg Melaka.

Munshi Abdullah served both in Malacca as well as in Singapore. He worked under Stamford Raffles in British Singapore.

Even though Munshi Abdullah was a learned man, he was regarded as a traitor as he had assisted the British officers to translate British documents into Malay. He had also assisted Christian missionaries to translate the Bible into Malay, knowing very well that the Malays were Muslims.

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MUNSHI ABDULLAH'S HOUSE

His house is not far from Masjid Kampung Kling - about 5 minutes walk from the masjid.

Masjid Kampung Kling is an ancient mosque in Malacca. People at the masjid can give the directions to Munshi Abdullah's house.

Munshi Abdullah's house in Kg Pali, Malacca

Kg Pali/Kg Masjid/Kg Ketek is a small village and contains 8 houses. It is a tourist destination in Malacca.

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FROM PERZIM
(edited)

Abdullah bin Abdul Kadir Munshi digelar sebagai Bapa Kesusasteraan Melayu Moden, berdasarkan beberapa karyanya yang terkenal, iaitu Shair Singapura Terbakar (1830), Kisah Pelayaran Abdullah (1838), Hikayat Abdullah (1849), Dewa-ul-kulub (1883), dan Kisah Pelayaran Abdullah ke Jeddah (1920). [This last book is post-humous as he died in 1850.]

Abdullah dilahirkan pada tahun 1796 di Kampung Pali (sekarang dikenali sebagai Kampung Ketek), Melaka daripada keluarga India Muslim keturunan Arab.

Sejak kecil lagi, "Munshi" memperlihatkan keistimewaannya sebagai pelajar yang bijak dan gigih mencari ilmu.

Beliau mempunyai minat yang mendalam mempelajari pelbagai bahasa selain Bahasa Melayu.

Berdasarkan kebolehannya maka beliau telah dilantik menjadi jurutulis dan penterjemah kepada Thomas Stamford Raflles dan pembesar Inggeris yang lain di Melaka, menyebabkan hubungannya begitu rapat dan mesra dengan British di Melaka dan di Singapura. Hal ini turut mempengaruhi corak dan falsafah pemikirannya.

Abdullah Munshi meninggal dunia di Jeddah pada tahu 1854 dalam perjalanan menunaikan fardhu Haji.

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MUNSHI ABDULLAH'S AUTOBIOGRAPHY - HIKAYAT ABDULLAH

There exists an ancient seaside Chinatown in Terengganu, which was visited by Admiral Cheng Ho, and was mentioned by Munshi Abdullah in his book.

Old version of Hikayat Abdullah printed in early 1960s
Two pages of his diary
A decorated page of Hikayat Abdullah
A decorated page of Hikayat Abdullah
Book cover of the modern version of Munshi Abdullah's book/diary/travelogue, as used in Malaysian schools for Malay literature class


- - - - -
FRANK SWETTENHAM

Frank Athelstone Swettenham (British Malaya), a British officer;
his profile resembles that of Munshi Abdullah

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BOOKS ON MUNSHI ABDULLAH

There are at least three books on British Malaya and Singapore that discuss Munsyi Abdullah.
  1. One book was written by Frank Swettenham and published in 1907. 
  2. Another book was published in 1948. The contents include accounts of Munsyi Abdullah meeting with Lord Minto. Another account states Munsyi Abdullah with Stamford Raffles and wife Olivia. 
  3. Kesah pĕlayaran Abdullah (Voyages of Munshi Abdullah), 1907 was written by Sir Richard James Wilkinson (1867-5 December 1941). He was a colonial administrator, a Malay scholar and historian.

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TOK HAJI NOORDIN
- from Mahadhir Mohamad (cicit Hj Noordin)

Tok Haji Noordin was said to have visited a wealthy relative in the area where Munshi Abdullah had lived.

There is no clue as to who was the wealthy relative in Kg Pali. It could be Munshi Abdullah's family or some other family.

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External links:
http://www.emily2u.com/munshi-abdullah-house-kg-ketek-melaka/
http://sekilau1.blogspot.my/2012/01/kampung-ketek.html
http://asmaliana.com/blog/2009/05/12/kampung-ketek/
http://seniwarisanterengganu.blogspot.com/2010/05/kampung-china.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_James_Wilkinson
http://eresources.nlb.gov.sg/infopedia/articles/SIP_503_2004-12-27.html
https://arjuna1182.wordpress.com/2008/07/09/abdullah-munsyi-penilaian-negatif-dan-positif/

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