We do our best not to use any jargon but some words cannot be replaced or translated.

Here is a tentative explanation of words that you may not understand and that you will probably encounter while traveling in Malaysia 

Iban :  they are the main indigenous community in Sarawak (about 30% of the population). They are one of the Dayak people.

thread tied with first dye layer

Ikat comes from a Malay word meaning “to tie”. It refers to the process where threads are tied and dyed before they are woven. Through common usage, the word has come to describe both the process and the cloth itself.

Jalan : street (Malay).

Kampung : village (Malay)

glossary-nipah-palmNipah palm: Nypa fruticans, Attap/Nipah (Malay) is a mangrove palm. The palm leaves are used in traditional indigenous handicraft in Malaysian Peninsula and Borneo. To find out more about these species, log on to the naturia website. 

Orang Asli :  “aborigines” or “indigenous people” (Malay). Orang means “human” and asli means “native” or “natural”. More information on COAC website.

glossary-pandanusPandan or Pandanus comprises about 600 species. Some are used in South East Asian cooking, some are used for handicraft. Wikipedia for more information

Pasar : market (Malay)

Pulau : island (Malay)

glossary-pua-kumbuPua / Pua Kumbu is the name given to textile pieces made by Iban weavers (Sarawak). Pua kumbu is an ikat textile used as a ceremonial  cloth or blanket. It was traditionally made of cotton yarn and dyed with two natural colours : blue-indigo obtained from the leaves of Tarum (Marsdenia Tinctoria, Indigofera) and brown-reddish color from the roots of Engkudu (Morinda citrifolia). It takes about 6 month to one year to complete a Pua Kumbu.

rafflesia-in-ulu-gerohThe Rafflesia is the largest flower in the world. It woes it name to Sir Stamford Raffles (founder of Singapore) who reported the first discovery of the flower in Sumatra. There are twenty known species of Rafflesia, all of which are confined to South East Asia. Malaysia is home to seven species. More about Rafflesia

The Raja Brooke butterfly (Trogonoptera brookiana albescens) is a distinctive black and electric-green birdwing butterfly from  Malaysia. It was discovered by A.R. Wallace in 1855 and named after the first White Raja of Sarawak, James Brooke. 

pts-songket1Songket is a Malay word meaning “to embroider threads” with gold or silver. It is woven using the supplementary weaving where additional threads (of gold or silver) are added to create designs. Among the Malay community, songket is worn only on special occasions such as during weddings, state functions and in the royal palaces.

If you click on the pictures you will be linked to Greenselipar’s album on Picasa