Saturday, 8 October 2016

Portuguese colonial Influences in Malacca

Of the 3 European colonial masters in Malacca, which had the most influence (or impact) on Malayans and why?

  1. The Portuguese were the first European power to attack Malacca in 1511. The Portuguese took note and came to trade in Malacca in 1509. They studied Malacca for 2 years before launching an attack on Malacca, causing grave damages to Malacca and its people.
  2. The Portuguese Settlement remains the only Portuguese village community in Malacca. They are mainly fishermen.
  3. There was no Portuguese hospital (none mentioned in relation to Malacca history).
  4. There was no Portuguese school built in Malacca
  5. There was no Portuguese church
  6. There were no significant Portuguese structures built except for the famed fortress, A'Famosa. Only one gate of that fortress remains today, the Santiago gate.
  7. There was no Portuguese market or square mentioned in Malacca history.
  8. Malacca's history is still remembered today and so are the names Alfonso and de Sequira. But the names are forgotten by Malays who disliked the Portuguese invasion.
  9. Malacca was the only Malay state that fell to the Portuguese in our history. The other states did not meddle with the state of affairs in Malacca at the time when the Portuguese ruled Malacca. It sounds intimidating or the Malacca people lived in fear or were intimidated somewhat.
  10. The Portuguese community of the Portuguese Settlement dance Portuguese folk dances despite they haven't been to Portugal or lived long enough in Portugal or speak Portuguese. Culturally, the Portuguese conquerors lived their lives Portuguese-style in Malacca and the people of Malacca merely allowed it. Even though the Portuguese only ruled Malacca for 150 years, culturally they transformed Malacca to follow the Portuguese way of life with Portuguese folk dancing and music. 
  11. Portuguese is not spoken in Malacca today but there are Portuguese words used in spoken Malay in Malacca. Examples are (similar words): sapatos (Malacca Malay sepatu, Malay kasut, English shoes); camisa (Malacca Malay khamis, Malay baju, English shirt); toalha (Malacca Malay tuale, Malay tuala, English towel); bazar (Malay bazar, English bazaar); pistola (English & Malay pistol); varanda (English verandah, Malacca Malay berande, Malay berandah); bandeira (English flag, Malay bendera, Malacca Malay bendeire); tanque (English tank, Malay tangki); tombar (English fall, Malay tombang); tomate (English & Malay tomato); ananas (English pineapple, Malay nenas); manteiga (English butter, Malay mentega; Malacca Malay mentege); 
  12. Many Portuguese words did not assimilate into the Malay language in Malacca (dissimilar words): escravo (English slave, Malay hamba), dinheiro (English money, Malay duit), navio or nau (English ship, Malay kapal); mercado (English market, Malay pasar); rio (English river, Malay sungai); casa (English house, Malay rumah); dona de casa (English housewife, Malay surirumah); portao or porta (English gate, Malay pagar/pintu); coco (English coconut, Malay kelapa, Malacca Malay kelape); leite de coco (English coconut milk, Malay santan); saco (English sack, Malay guni or karung); Dom (English Sir, Malay Tuan).
  13. Altogether, the Portuguese have contributed some 1,400 words into the Malay language.

That's 500 years of Portuguese history in Malacca today.