In a gist, Malays are an Austronesian ethnic group and nation native to the Malay Peninsula, eastern Sumatra of Indonesia and coastal Borneo, as well as the smaller islands which lie between these locations — areas that are collectively known as the Malay world. These locations are today part of the nations of Brunei and Malaysia (two of the modern-Malay nation state), Indonesia, Singapore, and southern Thailand.
There is considerable genetic, linguistic, cultural, and social diversity among the many Malay subgroups, mainly due to hundreds of years of immigration and assimilation of various regional ethnicity and tribes within Maritime Southeast Asia. Historically, the Malay population is descended primarily from the earlier Malayic-speaking Austronesians and Austroasiatic tribes who founded several ancient maritime trading states and kingdoms, notably Brunei, Kedah, Langkasuka, Gangga Negara, Chi Tu, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Pahang, Melayu and Srivijaya.
The advent of the Malacca (Melaka) Sultanate in the 15th century triggered a major revolution in Malay history, the significance of which lies in its far-reaching political and cultural legacy. Common definitive markers of a Malayness – the religion of Islam, the Malay language and traditions – are thought to have been promulgated during this era, resulting in the ethnogenesis of the Malay as a major ethnoreligious group in the region. In literature, architecture, culinary traditions, traditional dress, performing arts, martial arts, and royal court traditions, Malacca set a standard that later Malay sultanates emulated. The golden age of the Malay sultanates in the Malay Peninsula, Sumatra and Borneo saw many of their inhabitants, particularly from various tribal communities like the Batak, Dayak, Orang Asli and the Orang Laut become subject to Islamisation and Malayisation. Today, some Malays have recent forebears from other parts of Maritime Southeast Asia, termed as anak dagang ("traders") and who predominantly consist of Banjar, Bugis, Minangkabau people and Acehnese peoples, while some are also descended from more recent immigrants from other countries.
Throughout their history, the Malays have been known as a coastal-trading community with fluid cultural characteristics. They absorbed, shared and transmitted numerous cultural features of other local ethnic groups, such as those of Minang, Acehnese, and to some degree Javanese culture; however Malay culture differs by being more overtly Islamic than the multi-religious Javanese culture. Ethnic Malays are also the major source of the ethnocultural development of the related Betawi, Banjar, Cape Malay, Cocos Malays and Sri Lankan Malay cultures, as well as the development of Malay trade and creole languages like Ambonese Malay, Baba Malay, the Betawi language and Manado Malay.
The earliest form of Malay literature was the oral literature and its central subjects are traditional folklore relating to nature, animals and people. The classical Malay folklore is composed of traditional songs and music, heroic poems, animal fables, ghost stories, past events, fairy tales, symbolic lore, myths and bardic tales. Each of the stories possessed its own energy in terms of character, spirit, backdrop and storytelling and was largely crafted with the intent of happiness, guidance, educating, reminiscing, explaining, among few. The folklore were memorised and passed from one generation of storytellers to the next. Many of these tales were also written down by penglipur lara (storytellers) for example Hikayat Malim Dewa, Hikayat Malim Deman, Hikayat Raja Donan, Hikayat Anggun Cik Tunggal, and Hikayat Awang Sulung Merah Muda.
Considering the softness and mellifluence of the Malay language, which lends itself easily to the requirements of rhyme and rhythm, the originality and beauty in Malay literature can be assessed in its poetical elements. Among the forms of poetry in Malay literature are – the Pantun, Syair and Gurindam. The rich oral literature and classical literature of the Malays contain a great number of portraits of the people, from the servant to the minister, from the judge to the Rajas, from the ancient to the very contemporary periods, which together form the amorphous identity of the Malays.
The early Malay communities were largely animists, believing in the existence of semangat (spirits) in everything. Around the opening of the common era, Hinduism and Buddhism were introduced by South Asian traders to the Malay Archipelago, where they flourished until the 13th century, just before the arrival of Islam brought by Arab, South Asian and Chinese Muslim traders.
In the 15th century, Islam of the orthodox Sunni sect flourished in the Malay world under the Malacca Sultanate. In contrast with Hinduism, which transformed early Malay society only superficially, Islam can be said to have been fully integrated in the daily life of the population. Since this era, the Malays have traditionally had a close identification with Islam and they have not changed their religion since. This identity is so strong that it is said to become Muslim was to masuk Melayu (to enter Malayness).
Throughout many decades, the traditional Malay architecture has been influenced by Bugis and Java from the south, Siamese, British, Arab and Indian from the north, Portuguese, Dutch, Aceh and Minangkabau from the west and Southern Chinese from the east.
The traditional Malay houses are built using simple timber-frame structure. They have pitched roofs, porches in the front, high ceilings, many openings on the walls for ventilation, and are often embellished with elaborate wood carvings. The beauty and quality of Malay wood carvings were meant to serve as visual indicators of the social rank and status of the owners themselves.
The first detailed description of Malay architecture was on the great wooden Istana of Mansur Shah of Malacca (reigned 1458–1477). According to Sejarah Melayu, the building had a raised seven bay structures on wooden pillars with a seven-tiered roof in copper shingles and decorated with gilded spires and Chinese glass mirrors.
Various cultural influences, notably Chinese, Indian and Europeans, played a major role in forming Malay architecture. Until recent time, wood was the principal material used for all Malay traditional buildings. However, numerous stone structures were also discovered particularly the religious complexes from the time of Srivijaya and ancient isthmian Malay kingdoms. Early reference on Malay architecture in Malay peninsula can be found in several Chinese records. A 7th-century Chinese account tells of Buddhist pilgrims calling at Langkasuka and mentioned the city as being surrounded by a wall on which towers had been built and was approached through double gates. Another 7th-century account of a special Chinese envoy to Red Earth Kingdom in Malay peninsular, recorded that the capital city had three gates more than hundred paces apart, which were decorated with paintings of Buddhist themes and female spirits.
The Visual Arts
A typical Malay traditional houses or mosque would have been adorned with more than 20 carved components. The carving on the walls and the panels allow the air breeze to circulate effectively in and out of the building and can let the sunlight to light the interior of the structure. At the same time, the shadow cast by the panels would also create a shadow based on the motives adding the beauty on the floor. Thus, the carved components performed in both functional and aesthetic purposes.
The art form is mainly attributed to the abundance of timber on the Malay Archipelago and also by the skillfulness of the woodcarvers that have allowed the Malays to practice woodcarving as a craft. The natural tropical settings where flora and fauna and cosmic forces are abundant has inspired the motives to be depicted in abstract or styled form into the timber board. With the coming of Islam, geometric and Islamic calligraphy form were introduced in the wood carving. The woods used are typically from tropical hardwood species which is known to be durable and can resist the attacks of the fungi, power-boosts beetles and termites.
Wood carving is a part of classical Malay visual arts. The Malays had traditionally adorned their monuments, boats, weapons, tombs, musical instrument, and utensils by motives of flora, calligraphy, geometry and cosmic feature. The art is done by partially removing the wood using sharp tools and following specific patterns, composition and orders. The art form, known as ukir, is hailed as an act of devotion of the craftsmen to the creator and a gift to his fellowmen.
According to several studies, the native Malay pottery industry has developed indigenously from the period of great antiquity and has since encapsulated a high-level of cultural sophistication. It also has been noted that the design features of the Malay pottery suggested the absence of the foreign influence prior to the 19th century, a paradox considering the vast cultural contact between the Malays and the outside world.
Under the Malay culture, pottery is not solely witnessed as a mere household utensil. It is perceived as a work of art, a paradigm of talent, embroidered with aesthetic, legacy, perseverance and religious devotion. The Malay earthen is usually unglazed, with the ornamental designs were carved when the pottery is semi-dried during its construction process.
Nearly every Malay meal is served with rice, the staple food in many other East Asian cultures. Although there are various types of dishes in a Malay meal, all are served at once, not in courses. Food is eaten delicately with the fingers of right hand, never with the left which is used for personal ablutions, and Malays rarely use utensils. Because most of Malay people are Muslims, Malay cuisine follows Islamic halal dietary law rigorously. Protein intake are mostly taken from beef, water buffalo, goat, and lamb meat, and also includes poultry and fishes. Pork and any non-halal meats, also alcohol is prohibited and absent from Malay daily diet.
The main characteristic in traditional Malay cuisine is undoubtedly the generous use of spices. The coconut milk is also important in giving the Malay dishes their rich, creamy character. The other foundation is belacan (shrimp paste), which is used as a base for sambal, a rich sauce or condiment made from belacan, chillies, onions and garlic. Malay cooking also makes plentiful use of lemongrass and galangal.
Different Malay regions are all known for their unique or signature dishes – Pattani, Kelantan and Terengganu for their Nasi dagang, Nasi kerabu and Keropok lekor; Jambi, Pahang, and Perak for their Durian-based cuisine especially gulai tempoyak; South Sumatra, Kedah, and Penang for their northern-style Asam laksa and rojak; Perlis and Satun for their Bunga kuda desserts; Negeri Sembilan for its lemak-based dishes, West Sumatra, Riau, Melaka, and Johor for their spicy Asam Pedas; Riau and Pahang for their ikan patin (Pangasius fish) dishes; Melayu Deli of Medan, North Sumatra for their Nasi goreng teri Medan (Medan anchovy fried rice) and Gulai Ketam (crab gulai); Jambi for its Panggang Ikan Mas; Palembang for its Mie celor and Pempek; Sarawak and Sambas for their Bubur pedas and laksa; Brunei for Nasi Katok and its unique Ambuyat dish.
The Performing Arts
Nobat music became part of the Royal Regalia of Malay courts since the arrival of Islam in the 12th century and only performed in important court ceremonies. Its orchestra includes the sacred and highly revered instruments of nehara (kettledrums), gendang (double-headed drums), nafiri (trumpet), serunai (oboe), and sometimes a knobbed gong and a pair of cymbals.
Traditional Malay music is basically percussive. Various kinds of gongs provide the beat for many dances. There are also drums of various sizes, ranging from the large rebana ubi used to punctuate important events to the small jingled-rebana (frame drum) used as an accompaniment to vocal recitations in religious ceremonies.
The Malays have diverse kinds of music and dance which are fusions of different cultural influences. Typical genres range from traditional Malay folk dances dramas like Mak Yong to the Arab-influenced Zapin dances. Choreographed movements also vary from simple steps and tunes in Dikir barat to the complicated moves in Joget Gamelan.
The Traditional Dress
In contrast to Baju Melayu which continued to be worn as a ceremonial dress only, Baju Kurung is worn daily throughout the year by a majority of Malay women. Sighting of female civil servants, professional workers and students wearing Baju Kurung is common in Malaysia and Brunei.
Other common classical Malay attire for men consists of a baju (shirt) or tekua (a type of a long sleeve shirt), baju rompi (vest), kancing (button), a small leg celana (trousers), a sarong worn around the waist, capal (sandal), and a tanjak or tengkolok (headgear); for the aristocrats, the baju sikap or baju layang (a type of coat) and pending (ornamental belt buckle) are also synonymous to be worn as a formal attire. It was also common for a pendekar (Malay warrior) to have a Kris tucked into the front fold of sarong.
The corresponding mode of Baju Kurung for men is known as "Baju Melayu". The upper part of the garment was made with the geometrical design almost similar to Baju Kurung and commonly paired with woven cloth known as the sarong. The pattern of the sarong may possess a symbol of the person's marital status or the rank in the classical Malay society.
The word Baju Kurung, literary defined as "encase the body" of the wearer is tailored based on the Islamic principles of modesty, decency and humility. The practice is parallel to the Judaeo-Christian religious doctrine, as flaunting the intimate body parts is considered as forbidden in Islam. The interpretation was then absorbed to the Malay way of dressing and cultural perspective, this can be strongly witnessed upon the rule of Mansur Shah of Malacca in the 15th century, the sultan prohibited his female Muslim subjects in the public from wearing only a sarong from the bust downwards. Throughout the ages, The Malay Baju Kurung went into several reincarnations before assuming its current form. Due to the vastness of various Malay kingdoms in the archipelago, local and distinct forms of the Baju Kurung design patterns can also be witnessed in the region, including Bengkulu, Kedah, Jambi, Johor-Riau, Pahang and Palembang.
Classical Malay dress varies between different regions, but the most profound traditional dress in modern-day are Baju Kurung (for women) and Baju Melayu (for men), which both recognised as the national dress for Malaysia and Brunei, and also worn by Malay communities in Indonesia, Singapore, Myanmar and Thailand.
In Malay culture, clothes and textiles are revered as symbols of beauty, power and status. Numerous accounts in Malay hikayats stressed the special place occupied by textiles. The Malay handloom industry can be traced its origin since the 13th century when the eastern trade route flourished under Song dynasty. Mention of locally made textiles as well as the predominance of weaving in Malay peninsular was made in various Chinese and Arab accounts. Among well-known Malay textiles are Songket, Batik, Telepok, Limar, Tenun, Kelingkam, Cindai, Pelangi and Tekad.
The traditional Malay apparel and textile have been continuously morphed since the time of antiquity. Historically, the ancient Malays were chronicled to incorporate various natural materials as a vital source for fabrics, clothing and attire. The common era, however, witnessing the early arrivals the merchants from east and west to the harbours of Malay archipelago, together they bought new luxurious items, including fine cotton and silks. The garments subsequently become a source of high Malay fashion and acquired a cultural role as the binding identity in the archipelago, especially in the Peninsula, Sumatra and the coastal areas of Borneo.
The Festivals & Celebrations
The rise of Islam managed to redefine the Malay identity by the 15th century. Thus, resulting most of the Malay festivals and celebrations to run parallel with the Islamic calendar, albeit deeply ingrained with a strong sense of Malay character. The biannual Hari Raya (lit "the Great Day") observance of Aildifitri and Aidiladha are hailed as the grand celebrations universally across the Malay community. The two holidays are instrumental to commentate two major events and philosophy in the Islamic teaching and beliefs. The former signifies the triumph as a Muslim after a month of fasting and patience in Ramadan, while the latter is to observe the sacrifice made by Ibrahim (Abraham) under the name of Allah.
The Raya holidays usually commenced during the homecoming event known as Balik Kampung or Balik Raya which occurred a few days before the festival. During the Hari Raya, the Malays would celebrated by performing the Eid prayers, holding a grand feast and visiting friends, relatives and neighbours. A visit to the grave of the departed loved ones is also essential, as a sign of respect, love and honour.
The Martial Arts
Apart from Silat, Tomoi is also practised by Malays, mainly in the northern region of the Malay peninsula. It is a variant of Indo-Chinese forms of kickboxing which is believed to have been spread in the Southeast Asian mainland since the time of Funan Empire (68 AD).
The influence of the Malay sultanates of Malacca, Johor, Pattani and Brunei has contributed to the spread of this martial art in the Malay Archipelago. Through a complex maze of sea channels and river capillaries that facilitated exchange and trade throughout the region, Silat wound its way into the dense rainforest and up into the mountains. The legendary Laksamana Hang Tuah of Malacca is one of the most renowned pesilat (Silat practitioners) in history and even considered by some as the father of Malay silat. Since the classical era, Silat Melayu underwent great diversification and formed what is today traditionally recognised as the source of Indonesian Pencak Silat and other forms of Silat in Southeast Asia.
Silat and its variants can be found throughout the Malay world: the Malay peninsula (including Singapore), the Riau Islands, Sumatra and coastal areas of Borneo. Archaeological evidence reveals that, by the 6th century, formalised combat arts were being practised in the Malay peninsular and Sumatra. The earliest forms of Silat are believed to have been developed and used in the armed forces of the ancient Malay kingdoms of Langkasuka (2nd century) and Srivijaya (7th century).
The Metal Casting
The usage of brassware transcends a plethora of classical Malay social classes, being used by the members of nobility and commoners alike. The popularity of brassware is heavily contributed due to its durability, quality and affordability to all. The brassware can be narrowed into two distinctions, yellow brass for functional items and white for decorative purposes. It is often meticulously hammered and craved with various decorative designs in religious and floral motives. The usage of brass however, is best known for Tepak Sireh, a ceremonial tray for betel quid and for constructing certain musical instruments such as Gongs for the classical Malay Gamelan orchestra. Additionally, other prominent traditional Malay items made from metal includes flower vases, perfume sprinkles, serving trays, cooking pots, kettle and incense burners.
For the Malay silverware, the works of silver are fairly known for its sophisticated and fine designs. It is usually crafted in the form of repousse, filigree and neillowork. Among the common traditional Malay items usually made of silver includes pillow ends, belt buckles, matt corners, stoppers for water vessels, Keris sheaths and tobacco boxes. The Awan Larat (cloud patterns) and Kerawang (Vegetal motives) are among the popular designs for Malay decorative silver pillow ends and tobacco boxes.
Upon the turn of the 17th century, gold, silver, iron and brass have all been perfectly moulded to become part and parcel to the Malay society. The era witnessed the works of metal received critical royal patronage. A plethora of Malay metalworks manifested as evidence of this era, ranging from a peculiar Malay dagger known as Keris made of iron, down to the elaborate fine jewellery made from the splendour of gold and silver. For the Malay nobles during this period, the works of pending (ornamental Belt buckle embellished with precious stones), keronsang (brooch) and cucuk sanggul (hairpins) were staged to become among the most sought item of fashion. The era also hosted a number of other prominent items in the Malay regalia cast in gold, including ceremonial box, Tepak sirih (Betel container) and parts of Keris. The art of casting gold was predominantly done by repoussé and granulation techniques, in which the traditional methods can still be witnessed until today. In the contemporary era, the Malay gold jewels are mainly found in the form of anklets, bracelets, rings, necklaces, pendants and earrings.
In the Malay society, classical metalworks assumed a role more than a mere instrumental tool. It serves as a testament of culture, cultivated by artistic appreciation and religious symbol, moulded by a craftsman who possessed a talent to redefined the essence of nature in the most ornamental manner. The art form has indeed received a long existence in the Malay World, observations made by the Arabs on the courts of Srivijaya narrated that about the abundance of golds in the capital, till the extent that the bars have to be ceremonially thrown into the estuary in a daily basis. On the Chinese accounts, the area was occasionally hailed as Jinzou, the gold coast. The zenith of Srivijaya also witnessed the arrivals of silver bought by the foreign merchants, which then spread to the members of Malay aristocracy.
There are also a plethora of other forms of weaponry in the Malay arsenal, all were nevertheless equally revered in a correlating manner as the Keris. The Malays would classify the traditional weapons under 7 different structures: Tuju ("Direct", the large and heavy artillery, including the Malay cannons of Meriam, Ekor Lontong, Lela and Rentaka), Bidik ("Gun", a weapon with metal tube propelled by an ammunition, with the Malay forms of Terakor and Istingar), Setubuh ("A body", weapon in the similar dimension of a human body, referred to the Malay spears of Tongkat Panjang and Lembing), Selengan ("An arm", a large saber from the length of the shoulders to the tips of the fingers, constituting the Malay saber of Pedang and Sundang), Setangan ("A hand", a sword with the diameter measured from the elbow to the 3 fingers, including Badik Panjang and Tekpi), Sepegang ("A hold", smaller than the Setangan, a dagger with Keris and Badik in the category) and Segenggam ("A grab", the smallest in the category, the hand-sized blade, including Lawi Ayam, Kerambit, Kuku Macan and Kapak Binjai). Other items in the traditional Malay weaponry includes sumpit (Blowpipe) and Busur dan Panah (Bow and Arrow), which are distinct from the seven class of armaments. Additionally, the Malays also would deploy Zirah, a type of Baju Besi (armour) and Perisai (shield) as defense mechanisms during the armed conflict.
Paradoxically, both groups shared a similar ideology addressing the hilt of the Keris. If the hilt faced up front, it serves as a testament that the man is prepared for a fight. Nevertheless, if the hilt is turned behind, it is an oath that the person is embracing for a reconciliation.
The Malays and Javanese are abided by contrasting philosophical values pertaining to Keris-wearing. Traditionally, a Malay would embedded his Keris from the front, an honour that the weapon is more paramount compared to the wearer and a constant reminder that one is always equipped to combat the nemesis. The Javanese however, adhered to the principle that he should be more cautious and the Keris may solely be exercised during the time of need, thus cladding their Keris from behind. The Javanese also believed that by mobilising their weapon that position, it would confused the enemy.
The trigger mechanism of an Istinggar, a classical Malay gun as displayed in Muzium Warisan Melayu (Malay Heritage Museum), Serdang, Selangor. Upon the Fall of Malacca in 1511, it was recorded by Tomé Pires that the Portuguese conquistadors managed to seized 3000 bronze and iron cannons and thousands of Istinggar guns from the capital.
During the classical era, a Malay man was not seen without a Keris outside of his house. The absence of a Keris on a man was frowned upon, perceived as if he were parading naked to the public. Traditionally, a man of Malay extraction would own three types of Keris: Keris Pusaka (the Dynasty Keris, inherited from one generation to another), Keris Pangkat (the Status Keris, awarded in right of his position in Malay society) and Keris Perjuangan Dirinya (the Struggle Keris, literally defined as his personal Keris). There are many strict rules, regulations and taboos to be adhered to in owning a Keris. The blade of a Kris is usually coated in a venomous arsenic, thus crafting an excruciatingly lethal blade for its prey. Traditionally, each Keris is also regarded as possessing a spirit, known as semangat, Special rituals were to be conducted to nurture, preserve and guardthe "soul" of the weapon. The spiritual approach is usually held every Malam Jumaat (Thursday night), with the blade is being purified with lime and smoked with incense, dedicated prayers and devoted mantras would be also recited upon to compliment the mystic ritual.
The Keris is one of the most revered items of Malay weaponry. Originally developed by the Javanese down south, the armament gradually assumed a Malay identity after entering the Srivijayan court, giving rise to characteristics distinct from its Javanese Keris forebears. By the time of Malacca in the 15th century, the evolution of the Malay Keris was perfected and possession of a Keris came to be regarded as part-and-parcel of Malay culture, becoming a philosophical symbol, juxtapositioned in prestige, craftsmanship, masculinity and honour.
The Traditional Games
The Malays also have a variant of Mancala board game known as Congkak. The game is played by moving stones, marbles, beads or shells around a wooden board consisting of twelve or more holes. Mancala is acknowledged as the oldest game in the world and can be traced its origin since Ancient Egypt. As the game dispersed around the globe, every culture has invented its own variation including the Malays.
Possibly the most popular Malay games is the Wau (a unique kind of kite from east coast of Malay peninsular) or kite flying. Wau-flying competitions take place with judges awarding points for craftsmanship (Wau are beautiful, colourful objects set on bamboo frames), sound (all Malay kites are designed to create a specific sound as they are buffeted about in the wind) and altitude.
Other popular game is Gasing spinning which usually played after the harvest season. A great skill of craftsmanship is required to produce the most competitive Gasing (top), some of which spin for two hours at a time.
Sepak Raga is one of the most popular Malay games and has been played for centuries. Traditionally, Sepak raga was played in circle by kicking and keeps aloft the rattan ball using any part of the body except the arms and hands. It is now recognised as Malaysia's national sport and played in the international sporting events such as Asian Games and Southeast Asian Games.
Traditional Malay games usually require craft skills and manual dexterity and can be traced their origins since the days of Malacca Sultanate. Sepak Raga and kite flying are among traditional games that were mentioned in the Malay Annals being played by nobilities and royalties of the Malay sultanate.
The Names & Titles
Malay personal names are complex, reflecting the hierarchical nature of the society, and titles are considered important. It has undergone tremendous change, evolving with the times to reflect the different influences that the Malays been subjected over the ages. Although some Malay names still retain parts of its indigenous Malay and Sanskrit influences, as Muslims, Malays have long favoured Arabic names as marks of their religion.
Malay names are patronymic and can be consisted of up to four parts; a title, a given name, the family name, and a description of the individual's male parentage. Some given names and father's names can be composed of double names and even triple names, therefore generating a longer name. For example, one of the Malaysian national footballer has the full name Mohd Zaquan Adha Abdul Radzak, where 'Mohd Zaquan Adha' is his triple given name and 'Abdul Radzak' is his father's double given name.
In addition to naming system, the Malay language also has an elaborate system of titles and honorifics, which are still extensively used in Malaysia and Brunei. By applying these Malay titles to a normal Malay name, a more complex name is produced. The former Prime Minister of Malaysia has the full name Dato' Seri Mohd Najib bin Tun Haji Abdul Razak, where 'Dato' Seri' is a Malay title of honour, 'Mohd Najib' is his personal name, 'bin' is derived from an Arabic word Ibnu meaning "son of" if in case of daughter it is replaced with binti, an Arabic word "bintun" meaning "daughter of", introduces his father's titles and names, 'Tun' is a higher honour, 'Haji' denotes his father's Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca, and 'Abdul Razak' is his father's personal name. The more extremely complex Malay names however, belong to the Malay royalties. The reigning Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia has the full regnal name Kebawah Duli Yang Maha Mulia Seri Paduka Baginda Yang di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Muhammad V lbni Sultan lsmail Petra, while the reigning Sultan of Brunei officially known as Kebawah Duli Yang Maha Mulia Paduka Seri Baginda Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu'izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar 'Ali Saifuddien Sa'adul Khairi Waddien.
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