Monday, January 11, 2010


c.1411 Kelantan established.
1499 - 1511 Conquered by Malacca.
1764 Independence restored.
1795 - 1800 Under Trengganu rule.
1812 - 9 Jul 1909 Kelantan under Thai sovereignty.
9 Jul 1909 British protectorate (an unfederated Malay state);
with a British resident from 1903.
Jul 1916 Negeri Kelantan Darul Naim established.
9/22 Dec 1941-20 Aug 1943 Occupied by Japan.
20 Aug 1943 - 8 Sep 1945 Annexed by Thailand.
1 Apr 1946 Joins Malay Union
31-8-1957 State of independent Malaya
16 Sep 1963 State of Malaysia

Map of Kelantan

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Kelantan is a state of Malaysia. The capital and royal seat is Kota Bharu. The Arabic honorific of the state is Darul Naim, ("The Blissful Abode").

Kelantan is positioned in the north-east of Peninsular Malaysia. It is bordered by Narathiwat Province of Thailand to the north, Terengganu to the south-east, Perak to the west, and Pahang to the south. To the north-east of Kelantan is the South China Sea.

Kelantan is located in the north-eastern corner of the peninsula, Kelantan, which is said to translate as the "Land of Lightning" (see alternate theories below), is an agrarian state with lush paddy fields, rustic fishing villages and casuarina-lined beaches. Kelantan is home to some of the most ancient archaeological discoveries in Malaysia, including several prehistoric aboriginal settlements.

The name Kelantan is said to be a corruption of gelam hutan, i.e. the Malay word for the cajuput, or swamp tea tree (Melaleuca leucadendron). Other theories claim the name comes from the Malay word kilatan, 'shiny/glittery' or kolam tanah, 'clay pool'. Kelantan was called Klantan (Thai: กลันตัน) by the Siamese when it was under their influence.

Historical Kelantan
The early history of Kelantan traces distinct human settlement dating back to prehistoric times. Early Kelantan had links to the Funan Kingdom, the Khmer Empire, Srivijaya and Siam.

Around 1411, Raja Kumar, the ruler of Kelantan, became independent of Siam, and Kelantan became an important centre of trade by the end of the 15th century.

In 1499, Kelantan became a vassal state of the Malacca Sultanate. With the fall of Malacca in 1511, Kelantan was divided up and ruled by petty chieftains, paying tribute to Patani, which in turn was a vassal of Siam ruling from Ayuthaya. In 1603, most of these petty Kelantan chiefs became subject to Patani.

Around 1760, a chieftain of Kubang Labu in Kelantan succeeded in unifying the territory of the present Kelantan. Shortly thereafter, in 1764, Long Yunos was appointed as the Penghulu of Kota Bharu while his brother, Nik Muhammadiah, ruled as Sultan Muhammad I of Legeh in Ayer Lanas. Nik Muhammadiah or Sultan Muhammad I, officially became the first sultan of Kelantan.

In 1812, Long Senik, the adopted son of Mohammad I, sided with the Thais and was appointed by them as the Sultan of Kelantan, known as Sultan Muhammad II. He broke from Terengganu's influence and became a tributary of the Thais. In the 1820s, Kelantan was one of the most populous and prosperous states in the Malay Peninsula, having avoided the wars and disputes which plagued the southern and western states. Thais continued to play their role in manipulating Kelantan throughout the 19th century.

Under the terms of the Anglo-Siamese Treaty of 1909, the Thais surrendered its claims over Kelantan, Terengganu, Kedah and Perlis to Great Britain, and Kelantan thus became one of the Unfederated Malay States with a British Adviser.

Kelantan was the first place in Malaya to be occupied by the Japanese, who invaded on December 8, 1941. During the Japanese occupation, Kelantan came again under control of Siam, but after the defeat of Japan in August 1945, Kelantan reverted to British rule.

Kelantan became part of the Federation of Malaya on February 1, 1948 and together with other states attained independence on August 31, 1957. On September 16, 1963, Kelantan became one of the component states of Malaysia.


1675 - Oct 1721 Sultan Omar ibni al-Mahrum Raja (d. 1721)
Oct 1721 - May 1734 Sultan Long Bahar ibni al-Marhum (d. 1734)
Raja Daim
May 1734 - 1739 Raja Long Sulaiman ibni al-Marhum (d. 1798)
Sultan Long Bahar (1st time)
1739 - 1746 Interregnum
1746 - 1756 Raja Long Sulaiman ibni al-Marhum (s.a.)
Sultan Long Bahar (2nd time)
1756 - 4 Sep 1758 Sultan Long Pandak ibni al-Marhum (d. 1758)
Tuan Sulong
Sep 1758 - Jul 1763 Sultan Long Muhammad ibni al-Marhum (d. 1763)
Sultan Long Pandak
Jul 1765 - 15 Jul 1795 Sultan Long Yunus ibni al-Marhum (d. 1795)
Raja Long Sulaiman
1795 - 1800 Tengku Muhammad ibni al-Marhum
Sultan Mansur
1800 - 26 Jan 1835 Sultan Muhammad I ibni al-Marhum (b. 1741 - d. 1835)
Long Yunus
26 Jan 1835 - 30 Oct 1886 Sultan Muhammad II ibni al-Marhum (b. c.1794 - d. 1886)
Temenggong Tengku Long Lan
- jointly with -
1835 - 1836 Tengku Long Zainal
30 Oct 1886 - 3 Mar 1890 Sultan Ahmad ibni al-Marhum Sultan (d. 1890)
3 Mar 1890 - 11 May 1891 Sultan Muhammad III ibni al-Marhum (b. 1845 - d. 1891)
Sultan Ahmad
23 Sep 1890 - 11 May 1891 Long Mansur ibni al-Marhum Sultan (b. 1870 - d. 1900)
Ahmad -Regent
11 May 1891 - 26 Jul 1898 Sultan Mansur ibni al-Marhum Sultan (s.a.)

26 Jul 1898 - 9 Feb 1900 Mansur ibni al-Marhum Sultan Ahmad (s.a.)
9 Feb 1900 - 22 Jun 1911 Sultan Muhammad IV ibni al-Marhum (b. 1870 - d. 1920)
Sultan Muhammad

22 Jun 1911 - 23 Dec 1920 Muhammad IV ibni al-Marhum Sultan (s.a.)
23 Dec 1920 - 20 Aug 1943 Ismail ibni al-Marhum Sultan (b. 1880 - d. 1944)
8 Sep 1945 - 9 Jul 1960 Ibrahim ibni al-Marhum Sultan (b. 1897 - d. 1960)
9 Jul 1960 - 29 Mar 1979 Yahya Petra ibni al-Marhum Sultan (b. 1917 - d. 1979)
21 Sep 1975 - 29 Mar 1979 Tengku Ismail Petra -Regent (b. 1949)
29 Mar 1979 - Ismail Petra ibni al-Marhum Sultan
Yahya Petra (s.a.)

¹Full style of the ruler:
(a) to 1898, 1900-1911: Raja and Yang di-Pertuan Muda of Kelantan;
(b) 1898-1900 and from 1911: Ke Bawah Duli Yang Maha Mulia al-Sultan dan Yang di-Pertuan Bagi Negara Kelantan Darul Naim ("Sultan and Head of the State of Kelantan").

Thai Advisor

1903 - 1909 Walter Armstrong Graham (b. 1868 - d. 1949)

British Advisers
1910 - 1911 J.S. Mason
1911 - 1913 J.E. Bishop
1913 Thomas Watts Clayton (acting) (b. 1877 - d. 19..)
1913 - 1914 William Langham-Carter (b. 1869 - d. 1940)
1915 - 1919 Roland John Farrer (acting) (b. 1873 - d. 1956)
1919 John Whitehouse Ward Hughes (b. 1883 - d. 19..)
1919 - 1923 Henry Wagstaffe Thomson (b. 1874 - d. 1941)
1920 Arthur Furley Worthington (b. 1874 - d. 1964)
(acting for Thomson)
1923 - 1926 Arthur Furley Worthington (s.a.)
1924 - 1925 H.C. Eckhardt
(acting for Worthington)
1926 - 1928 George Ernest Shaw (b. 1877 - d. 1958)
1928 - 1930 Reginald John Byard Clayton (b. 1875 - d. 1962)
1930 - 1933 Alwyn Sidney Haynes (b. 1878 - d. 1963)
1931 - 1932 T.P. Coe (acting for Haynes)
Feb 1934 - Jul 1934 William Douglas Barron (acting) (b. 1887 - d. 19..)
Jul 1934 - 1940 Alan Custance Baker (b. 1885 - d. 1969)
1940 - 1941 E.T. Williams

Japanese Governors
1941 - 1943 Yashushi Sunakawan
1943 - 20 Aug 1943 Kikura Fujisawa

Thai officers
1943 - 1944 Charu Chaichan
1944 - 1945 Tharin Rawang Phu

British Resident Commissioners
1945 - 1946 ....
1 Apr 1946 - 1946 William Alexander Gordon-Hall (b. 1894 - d. 19..)
1946 - 1952 William Foster Norton Churchill (b. 1898 - d. 1963)
May 1948? - 1948 Curtis (acting for Churchill)
Sep 1950 - Apr 1951 M.C. Sheppard (acting for Churchill)
Oct 1952 - Jun 1953 A.N. Ross (b. 1905)
Jun 1953 - Mar 1955 Derek Headly (b. 1908)
British Adviser
Mar 1955 - 1957 G.S. Rawlings (b. 1904)

Chief ministers (title Menteri Besar)

1886 - 1890 Nik Yusoff bin Nik Abdul Majid
(1st time)
1890 - 1894 Said bin Ngah
1894 - 1900 Nik Yusoff bin Nik Abdul Majid
(2nd time)
1900 - 1920 Hassan bin Mohamed Salleh
1921 - 1944 Nik Mahmud bin Ismail
1944 - 1953 Nik Ahmed Kamil bin Nik Mahmud
1953 - 1959 Mohamed Hamzah bin Zainal Abidin
1959 - 1964 Datuk Ishak bin Lotfi Omar PAS
1964 - 1974 Datuk Mohd Asri Muda (b. 1923 - d. 1992) PAS
1974 - Mar 1978 Datuk Mohamad Nasir (b. 1916 - d. 1997) BERJASA
Mar 1978 - 22 Oct 1990 Datuk (from 1982, Datuk Amar; from
1988, Tan Sri) Mohamed Yaacob (b. 1926) UMNO
22 Oct 1990 - Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat (b. 1931) PAS
(from 28 Mar 1995, Dato' Nik Abdul
Aziz Nik Mat)

Kelantan Chinese

Chinese in Kelantan constitute roughly 4%

The earliest confirmed Chinese arrival was that of Hakka Chinese who came in 1600s during Ming Dynasty, and went up the Kelantan River going deep into the interior, eventually settling down at a remote post now called Pulai in Gua Musang. They were engaged in gold mining.

The Hokkiens come later, the first Hokkiens came down to Kelantan through the Isthmus of Kra(Thailand) soon later or perhaps around the same time as the Hakka of Pulai. They scattered all over the Kelantanese plain, living side by side with either Malay or Thai neighbours, working the land as farmers, adopting local customs and languages in the process. Amidst hardships on the adopted foreign land, they thrived very well. But the Hokkiens isolated themselves from other Chinese. The " Siamese-appointed " British Advisor to the Kelantanese Court, W.A. Graham, noted in his guidebook on Kelantan ( 1908 ),who reported that Chinese numbered 8,000, mainly Hokkiens who come early. Hailam and other Chinese from Singapore come as shop keepers or labourers,and the population was increasing.

Then come the Straits Chinese during the beginning of British takeover of Kelantan in 1909. They sailed up from the Straits or Singapore and are easily distinguishable from the early Chinese settlers as they prefer to stay in towns, indulging in trades or working as labourers instead of farming.

Cina Bandar and Cina Kampung came to being later from such differences in economic activities as well as the level of social interactions they show in regards of the native population. Both mixed well with the local Malay and adapt and adopt the Malay culture extensively.

The Kelantanese Malays refer the Kelantanese Chinese as Chino Kito or Chino Kelate while those from other states as Chino Luwaa. Such reference is made since the Kelantanese tend to see the Kelantanese Chinese as a part of themselves thus giving them a special place in the closely knitted, culturally sensitive Kelantanese society, compared to the non-Kelantanese Chinese aka Chino Luwaa.


Cham People of Kelantan

Abdul Rahman al-Ahmadi notes, local Kelantanese traditions have the King of Kelantan coming from Kembayat, an area some authors believe to be Champa, although others maintain it is Cambodia. Less controversial evidence of a Chamic presence is found in the numerous place names related to Champa: Pengkalan Cepa, Kampong Cepa, and Gong Cepa, to cite but a few. The
Cepa of these names is obviously Champa, with the expected sound changes.

These place names and other influences were the result of an Acehnese presence in Kelantan, not just a Chamic presence.”

(to be continue...)

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