The Nagarakertagama , Nagarakretagama , Nagarakrtagama , or Desawarnana , is a praise of King Hayam Wuruk of Majapahit written in the form of an epic poem by the court poet Mpu Prapanca in 1365 (or 1287 of the Saka era ) 1 .

The poem gives detailed descriptions of a period considered to be the golden age of the kingdom. It reveals the importance of religion in Majapahit by mentioning the construction of temples and palaces in the kingdom and the holding of ceremonies. One of the traditions described is that where the royal family goes around the kingdom to pay homage to the king’s ancestors.

Prapanca narrates a ritual at the Singasari Temple , in which Hayam Wuruk observes the puspa ceremony in honor of his great-grandfather Kertanegara , the last king of Singasari. After this ceremony, the king went to Kagenengan to pay tribute to the founder of Singasari, Rajasa 2 .

The nagarakretagama described Kertanegara as a devout Buddhist 3 . After his death, he is deified in three forms: in tirthankara (“forerunner”, implied through the river of human misery), in Ardhanarisvara (that is to say “the lord Ardhanari “, the androgynous form of the god Shiva ) and “Shiva- Buddha “, “the honored and illustrious protector of the mountains, protector of the unprotected. It is certainly sovereign over the rulers of the world ” 4 . This figure of Shiva-Buddha is specific to Java, where the

The poem also describes the death of Gajah Mada , Hayam Wuruk’s right-hand man.

The “tributary lands” of Majapahit according to Nagarakertagama, which have been interpreted as being subject to the kingdom

The Nagarakertagama lists a hundred or so “tributary lands” of Majapahit. At first, some authors concluded that these were the Majapahit subject areas. It is now estimated that the named principalities had a privileged commercial relationship with Majapahit, which was thus the center of a network 5 .

Notes and references

  1. ↑ ( in ) Myron Malkiel-Zhirmunsky, ” The Study of The Artistic Antiquities of Dutch India ” , Harvard Journal of Asiatic Studies , Vol.  4, o 1,p.  59-68 ( read online  [ archive ] )
  2. ↑ ( in ) Nancy Dowling, ” Javanization of Indian Art ” , Indonesia , Vol.  54p.  117-138 ( read online  [ archive ] )
  3. ↑ Pigeaud (1960), p. 49.
  4. ↑ Pigeaud (1960), p. 3.
  5. ↑ Lombard, Denys Crossroads Javanese