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Malay history

Lamuri Sultanate

1. The History

Historical evidences which confirm the existence of Lamurai Sultanate are insufficient. So far, the findings and the data related to the Sultanate are still speculative and tentative. This article is trying to give some light on the Sultanate, and will be changed provided that there are other strong evidences. 

In general, the historical evidences regarding the Lamuri Sultanate are based on the news and writings coming from outside Nusantara such as traders, merchants and sailors from Arab, India, and China. Those writings and news date back to before 1500 A.D. Besides, some other local sources such as Hikayat Melayu (Malay Account) and Hikayat Atjeh (Aceh Account) are also able to prove the existence of Lamuri Sultanate.  

Not only to its existence, the debate over the Lamuri Sultanate also related to its location. A Dutch historian, W.P. Groeneveldt, mentioned its location which stood at the North-west of Sumatra Ocean, in Aceh Besar district exactly. Another historian, H. Ylue, believed that Lamuri was once called Lambri where the traders and merchants coming from the Arabic countries and India had ever anchored to the dock in the Lamuri Sultanate. According to a wanderer and foreign writer, Tome Pies, the Lamuri Sultanate located in between Aceh Darussalam Sultanate and Biheue region. His statement assumes that its territory laid from the seashore to the inside island. 

In a dissertation conducted by T. Iskandar, under title De Hikayat Atjeh (1958), the location of Lamuri Sultanate was in a seashore, near to Krueng Raya, Aceh Besar district, Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam province. H. M. Zainuddin, an expert on the Aceh history, said that the Lamuri Sultanate was in Aceh Besar nearby Indrapatra, recent Lamnga village. Another Aceh historian, M. Junus Jamil, mentioned that nearby Lam Krak village, existed a Sultanate called Lamuri. The village is in Suka Makmur sub-district, Aceh Besar district, Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam Province.

According to the aforementioned data, both the establishment and the location of Lamuri Sultanate are debated amidst the experts, historians, and Aceh historians. Nevertheless, it can be said that the Sultanate was once established in the seashore and then become expanded in territory to the island. To be exact, it located nearby a bay around Krueng Raya. The bay is called Bandar Lamuri. The word “Lamuri” is, in fact, referred to Malahayati harbor (in Krueng Raya). Regarding the palace of Lamuri, it located in the edge of Kuala Naga (later it becomes Krueng Aceh) in recent Pande village. The village is also called Kandang Aceh.      

According to the sources from the Arabic traders, The Lamuri Sultanate had been in existence since the middle of the 9th century A.D. approximately, the Sultanate established in about 900 A.D. In the beginning of the 9th century, The Crivijaya Kingdom was a big Kingdom to which many conquered territories were subjected. In 943 A.D. the Lamuri Sultanate was under the rule of Crivijaya Kingdom as well. The Lamuri Sultanate was obliged to pay tribute to the Crivijaya Kingdom, to send armies when requested, and to report the whole situation of the Sultanate. Yet, the Lamuri Sultanate received the privilege to rule its own territory as an Islamic Kingdom.

According the Tanjore inscription in India, the Lamuri Sultanate was once attacked by Chola Kingdom under the rule of the first Rayendracoladewa. It happened in 1030 A.D. The Sultanate suffered from the war and was defeated at the end despite the fierce struggle. The huge armies sent to the battle shows that the Lamuri was a big Kingdom capable of waging struggle against the big Kingdom such as Chola. 

The Lamuri Sultanate was the first place visited by the traders and merchants coming from the Arabic and Indian countries. Then, their coming was not only for commercial purposes, it was also for spreading religious teaching. W.P. Groeneveldt analyzed that almost all people of Lamuri Sultanate embraced Islam as their religion. A historiography of Hikayat Melayu explained that Lamiri Sultanate (meant here is Lamuri) was the second place in the Sumatra island where the Islamization took place. The key figure in the process was Syaikh Ismail who brought Islam to Samudra Pasai Sultanate afterwards. Therefore, it can be said that the Lamiri Sultanate was one of the Islamic Kingdoms in Aceh.

Hikayat Atjeh revealed another fact regarding one of the Sultans ruling the Lamiri, which was Sultan Munawar Syah. He was well known figure and also an ancestor of prominent Sultan in Aceh, Sultan Iskandar Muda. At the end of 15th century, the central government of Lamuri was moved to Makota Alam (now is being called Kuta Alam, Banda Aceh) located in the Northern Krueng Aceh. It was the aftermath of Pidie Kingdom`s attack. In addition, the movement was a necessary measure after the river surrounding the city becoming shallow. Ever since, the Sultanate was known as Makota Alam Sultanate.

In 1513 A.D., the Lamuri Sultanate, together with the Pase Kingdom, Daya, Lingga, Pedir (Pidie),  Perlak, Benua Tamian, and Samudera Pasai merged under the Sultanate of Aceh Darussalam which was ruled then by Sultan Ali Mughayat Syah (1496-1528 A.D). Therefore, the Lamuri Sultanate was one of the embryos of Aceh Darussalam Sultanate. Its name was originally a name of village in Aceh Besar district, where its government centered in Lamreh village.

2. The Kings of the Kingdom  

(In the process of collecting data)

3. The Kingdom Period

The Lamuri Sultanate lasted for six centuries, beginning from 900 A.D. to 1513 A.D. The Sultanate was unified, together with other Kingdoms in Aceh, under the Sultanate of Aceh Darussalam.

4. The Kingdom Territory

The Lamuri`s territory encompassed a region which is known now as Aceh Besar district, Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam, Indonesia. 

5. The Kingdom Structure

The structure of government employed in the Lamuri Sultanate was not different from that employed in the Samudera Pasai Sultanate, because the two Sultanates shared the system which was based on the Islamic and maritime concept. In the Lamuri, the highest rank of position was a Sultan. In doing his job, the Sultan was ministered by several other officials, namely a prime minister, a treasurer, a navy commander (with title Laksamana), a secretary, a chairman of Religious Court (it was called as Qadhi), and some harbormasters who were responsible at maritime security affairs. They were also the connector between the Sultan and the traders from the outside of the sultanate.  

6. The Socio-Cultural Life

The Sultanate of Lamuri was a maritime Kingdom. It means that the people relied heavily on both agriculture and trade. The last sector was usually a transaction between the locals and outside traders such as those coming from the Arabic countries, India, and China. Some of the agricultural product sold in the market were black pepper, vegetables, spices, rice. Other stuffs were gold, and livestock. Such products had driven many attentions of traders and merchants to came and visit the Lamuri Sultanate in particular and Aceh region in general.



  • “Kerajaan Lamuri”, in, retrieved at December 15th, 2007.
  • “Pariwisata Nangroe Aceh Darussalam”, in, retrieved at December, 15th, 2007.
  • Sufi, Rusdi and Agus Budi Wibowo. 2006. Kerajaan-Kerajaan Islam di Aceh. Banda Aceh: Badan Perpustakaan Provinsi Nangroe Aceh Darussalam.
  • “Menapaki Sejarah Kota Banda Aceh”, in, retrieved at December 15th, 2007.
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Comment of "lamuri sultanate"

17 Jan 2010. Muhammad Nabil Berri
Ini ada sumber mengenai Kesultanan Lamuri:

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