Monday, April 25, 2011

Kaul Festival, Pulek Likou and Miteang

God, who has given the world to men in common, has also given them reason to make use of it to the best advantage of life, and convenience. The earth, and all that is therein, is given to men for the support and comfort of their being. And all the fruits it naturally produces, and beasts it feeds, are for mankind in common, as they are produced by the spontaneous hand of nature. The Nature on the other hand is guarded and protected by the Spirits. Without the Spirits the nature will be chaotic and human will face difficult time like famine, drought or floods. Hence it is out of respect and gratitude for the Spirits and God, the melanau must celebrate Kaul.

kaul mukah

Photo: Decorative boat carrying the offering basket (Seraheang) by Si Mata Kecik

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Lesson 8: Form of address in a melanau family

Today we are going to learn about how the melanaus address members in their family.
First of all here is a basic word list:

English Malay Melanau
Father Ayah Tama
Mother Emak Tina
Son Anak lelaki Aneak lai
Daughter Anak Perempuan Aneak mahou
GrandfatherDatuk Tipou lai
Grandmother Nenek Tipou mahou
Grandson Cucu lelaki Sou lai
Granddaughter Cucu perempuan Sou mahou
Brother Abang Akak*
Sister Kakak Akak*
Uncle Bapa Saudara Tuak
Aunt Emak Saudara Tebusou
Cousin Sepupu Jipou
nephew Anak Saudara ( Lelaki) Naken lai
niece Anak Saudara ( Perempuan) Naken mahou
firstborn Anak Sulung Apah tika lalu
lastborn Anak Bongsu Apah tadei lalu
adopted child Anak Angkat Aneak Ihou
stepchild  Anak Tiri Aneak Tiheak

* the word sister and brother are the same in melanau: akak.
It is not same as kakak (malay for sister)

Form of address in a melanau family:

One addresses his or her mother: Inak or Sinak ( English: mum or mama )

One addresses his or her father: Apak or Ma or Sema ( English: dad or papa )

One addresses his or her grandmother: Mak Nek or Mak Ayeng ( English: Nana or Grandma)

One addresses his or her grandfather: Pak Nek or Apak Ayeng ( English: Grandpa )

If one addresses his or her uncles or aunts, it should be according to the order of birth:

  • Firstborn: Wa
  • 2nd Born: Anjang
  • 3rd child or Middle Child: Angah or Ngah
  • Others that are younger than the middle child: Cik
  • 2nd to lastborn: Udak
  • lastborn: Usu

The address form can be used for both uncle and aunt. For example:
Aunt Marie ( 1st born) = Wa Marie
Uncle Sam ( 1st born) = Wa Sam

Aunt Emily ( 4th born ) = Cik Emily
Uncle John ( 4th born) = Cik John

Among siblings (Janeak, adik beradik) there are no specific address form. Normally first name or nickname will be used.

Special case: Suffix of -m. ( Imbuhan Akhiran -m)
Tama, Tina, Tipou, Tebusou have special 2nd person possessive form.

Your mother = Tinam and NOT Tina nou ( nou means your )
Gan tinam? - Where is your mother?

Your father = Tamam and NOT Tama nou 
Gan tamam? - Where is your father?

Your grandfather = Tipum lai and NOT Tipou lai nou 
Gan tipum lai? - Where is your grandfather?
Your grandmother = Tipum mahou and NOT Tipou mahou nou
Gan tipum mahou? - Where is your grandmother?

Your aunt = Tebusum and NOT Tebusou nou
Gan tebusum? - Where is your aunt?


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