May 30, 2020

The Curse of "Sangguran Stone" Stranded in Scotland

Agus Wibowo

Sangguran Inscription is an important document that became evidence of Indonesian history, especially about Medang Kingdom. This inscription was brought by Stamford Raffles in the early 19th century, given to the Governor General of the British Empire in India, Lord Minto, and taken to Scotland.

Sangguran Stone on the yard of Lord Minto's house
Before Mpu Sindok led the exodus of the Royal Family of Medang from Central Java to East Java, The Medang Royal military had expanded to the eastern part of Java Island several years earlier. Their tracks were found in Tulungagung until Malang and conquered the Kingdom of Kanjuruhan. Sangguran Ston issued by order Mpu Sindok who became Prime Minister in Medang in the time of King Dyah Wawa. This expansion continued the efforts of King Dyah Balitung in 905, recorded in the Kubu-Kubu Stone, which is part of the Penampihan Temple in Tulungagung.

Sangguran Inscription is made of stone which formed a neat plate, where the manuscript is inscribed on the front 38 lines, the back 45 lines, and the side 15 lines. At the front the opening prayer is written as follows: “Hope there are no obstacles! May prosper throughout the universe, (and) may all do good! May melt all sins, (and) may be blessed all over the earth! Congratulations!” In this section there is a number of years 850 Saka or 928 AD, when the King Dyah Wawa send orders to Mpu Sindok to build an inscription for the Sangguran Village.

From the transliteration made by Hasan, this inscription is intended as the inauguration of granting sima grace to Sangguran Village. with this inscription the government gave orders to officials of Sangguran Village to collect taxes as income to maintain and finance various purposes of the sacred building, as a tribute to the place of Shiva in the area of the cleric in Mananjung. On the front, this inscription also confirms the ban for Royal Medang officials to enter Sangguran Village to levy taxes. The names of positions that are prohibited to enter the village were very much, including patih, wahuta, and all the king's servants.

There are other aspects related to the rules described, including the types of levies and fines for crimes. This inscription also provides a report on the events that took place in the inaugural ceremony of granting this sima grace. It is said that there are puppet shows (people), there are many dishes that are all eaten up, and there is a gift to many, some who get gold or silver and cloth. Rewards are given to prominent figures in war, as well as to puppet performers.

The explanation of the gift sharing is quite long, right down to the back side of the inscription. After the story of gift sharing, at the bottom of the inscription there are closing sentences, which contain curses. The curse for anyone who destroys, transfers or disobeys the rules written on the Sangguran Stone. This curse sentence is very long, from line 28 to 38. Among the curse sentences as follows:

·     If there are evil people who do not obey and do not keep the curse that has been uttered by the wahuta hyang kudur, (whether he is) noble (or) servant, old (or) young, male (or) female, wiku (or) ladder, and obedient, wahuta, raama, anyone who destroys the village of Sangguran who has been given as sima to the punta in Mananjung, for the Bhatara (who dwells) in the sacred buildings of worship in the area of the blacksmiths, to the end of the age, is destroyed!

·     Similarly if someone pulls out the hyang watu siima, then he will be exposed to his karma, kill by you Hyang, he must be killed, so as not to see sideways, banged from the front, from the left side, prune his mouth, split his head, tear his stomach, grab his intestines, remove his innards, dive his heart, eat his flesh, drink his blood, then carry on (and) finally, destroy the soul!

·     If they walk in the forest (will be) eaten by tigers, snakes will be pierced, (will) be twisted by the God of Wrath, if walking in the moor will be struck by lightning, torn by the giant, and so on.

The manuscript on the side explains the completion of the show, the praise for the puppets players who play well, the audience is satisfied with the show and also on the dish. The last sentence is "This is the custom of the sima in Sangguran. Has been finished, written by Hino's clerk, Laksana. Hino was the Prime Minister of Medang and Laksana was his clerk.

Hopefully this inscription can be brought back to Indonesia soon

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