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The Origin of Small Anchovies

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There was a king named Tuan Rio Mangkubumi. He died in a battle with Palembang Kingdom. He was buried in Cakat Monasow Village in Pagar Dewa. Before he died, he talked to his son, Minak Pati Pejurit. “My dear son, you have to defeat Palembang Kingdom. If not, Pagar Dewa will be extinct. I’ll also curse my descendants who marry Palembang people. Cut the trees that grow facing Palembang direction.” After listening to his father’s wishes, Minak Pati Pajurit promised to do all the messages. Then he buried him and went to Banten. He met Sultan Banten, his father’s friend, to tell about his father’s death. He also asked for Sultan’s prayer to defeat Palembang Kingdom. “Please receive my deepest condolences for your father, my best friend. You shouldn’t feel afraid. Defeating Palembang is not a difficult thing for you. I’ll pray for you, Minak. But, I suggest you before having a battle, you should marry Princess Balau, Ratu Balau’s daughter in Lampung, so that you’ll have descendants. I don’t want to see you die at the battle without having any descendants,” said Sultan Banten. “Allright, Sultan. I do agree with your suggestion. I’ll marry Princess Balau soon,” replied Minak Pati Pejurit. Proposing Princess Balau Minak went back to his village and came to his uncle. He told him about the suggestion given from Sultan Banten. Knowing that, his uncle agreed and helped him in preparing all the things needed to propose Princess Balau. Minak, with his uncle and some of his people went to Negeri Balau Keraton Tanjungkarang. They sailed through Tulang Bawang River, passed Java Sea and finally arrived at Way Lunik, Teluk Betung. Arriving at Negeri Balau, there was a really tight security. Ratu Balau was having a big party for choosing his son in law of forty men for his daughter. The king would choose one man who could fulfill his wish.

The party was really glorious. It was attended by many guests from other kingdoms. There were layers of security from all directions. Outside the kingdom, the guards had known Minak’s arrival. They observed all his frightening behavior. Minak just pretended being scary to screw all the people and guards so that they would be frightened and he could pass the security. He also put some jewelry and other valuable things around the fence of trees that made the people cut down the trees for finding the jewelry. Meanwhile, the party was getting more glorious with a nice music and dances. When it came to the top of the party, suddenly some servants came to Ratu Balau. They told him that the princess was sick and fainted. The king hurriedly went to see his daughter and asked his soldiers to look for a fortuneteller to know her illness. Not long after that, the fortuneteller came. He examined the princess and then said, “The Princess is not sick. She wants something that hasn’t been exist.” After a few moments, The Princess got conscious. Then, the King asked his daughter. “My dear daughter, what happened? What do you want that makes you sick?” “Father, I am like having a dream. In these few days, there has been a young handsome man coming from North Lampung for proposing me. I don’t know why that I was flattered and received his marriage proposal. He’ll come again tonight and take me to his place,” explained Princess Balau. Hearing his daughter’s explanation, Ratu Balau became so angry. He asked the fortuneteller who was still there. “Who is the man?” asked him angrily. “What a shamed! What will happen if the forty men know about this,” added him. Princess Balau cried and then she said,” Father, if you forbid him, I had better die.” Hearing that, Ratu Balau asked his soldiers to find that man. While the princess’ fiancées were getting mad knowing that news. One of them came up to a stage and said loudly, “King Ratu Balau, please decide your choice tonight.

Who is among us that will become your son in law. If not, we will destroy this kingdom.” Meanwhile, Minak Pati Pejurit came to the palace with some guards. Seeing him, the prince was really glad that could be seen from her bright eyes and blushed face. She stared at Minak and smiled gorgeously. “Father, please let me go with this man,” asked the princess. “Okay, my dear. I’ll pray for both of you and you may go with him,” replied King Ratu Balau. He then took something and gave it to his daughter. “Take this with you and bring it to your husband’s kingdom. But remember, don’t unwrap it until you arrive in Minak Pati’s kingdom. Tonight, our kingdom will fall down because of the attacks from the forty men as your ex-fiancées,” said the king. “Father, I would like to thank you for the prayer and permission to take the princess to Pagar Dewa kingdom,” said Minak. “However, before we depart to Pagar Dewa, please let me help you defend this kingdom. We cannot leave the kingdom in this bad condition,” added him. As what he told to the king, Minak Pati Pejurit defeated the forty men who attacked the kingdom furiously. With his power, he could easily beat all his enemies. Ratu Balau was exultant and proud as well for having a great and kind-hearted son in law. Going Back to Pagar Dewa The following day, Minak and Princess Balau started their journey to Pagar Dewa.

They were supplied with many things including beautiful jewelry. They sailed though Sunda Strait and then stopped at Banten. They were invited to walk around the kingdom and see its natural beauty. When they walked near a harbor, they saw a jutted land to the sea. Minak remembered that the similar land was also found in his place which was called bujung. Hence, he named that land as Bojong. After spending a few days in Banten, they continued their journey. Minak really missed his village as well as the people and his people did miss him, too. They couldn’t wait for seeing their new queen, Minak’s wife. So, they decorated the palace to welcome Minak and his wife. Arriving at Pagar Dewa, Minak talked to his wife. “Do you still remembered when we walked around Banten Kingdom? There was a place that I called Bojong or bujung. Here, there is also a similar place which is a gate of Tulang Bawang Kingdom.” “Oh, I am so happy. It means that we have arrived. So, let me open the gift from my father,” said Princess Balau. “Of course, my dear. Just do it. I am also curious about the gift,” replied Minak. Slowly, the princess unwrapped the gift, and suddenly a lot of small anchovies came out from the box, inhaling the free air. The small anchovies got the water in Betut muara….. So, that’s the origin of small anchovies in Tulang Bawang. Up to now, those fish are still found in Betut Bujung, Tulang Bawang. (Adapted from Cerita Rakyat Daerah Lampung, 1984) Moral Lesson: We should do our parents’ advices. We should help others who really need our help.

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