A curious case of sleep hollow in Bintangor in 1937

The Sarawak Gazette has published many eyebrow-raising stories since its first publication in 1870. Most of these incidents took place in Sarawak while others happened in other countries. One of the strange incidents that was reported in the gazette took place in May 1937. The headline of the report was “Asleep for a

Rowan Waddy and his experience as a Semut Operative in Sarawak

Operation Semut was a series of reconnaissance operations that took place in Sarawak. It was carried out by Australia’s Z Special Unit in 1945 during the final days of World War II (WWII). Altogether, there were four operations were undertaken under Operation Semut. Their main objectives? To gather intelligence and to train the

3 theories on Kayan migration to Borneo island

When the Kayans are naming a child, or engaged in any special ceremony, such as going on the war-path, matches may not be used and fire must be made by drawing rattan backwards and forwards on a piece of soft, dry wood. Credit: Public Domain. When speaking about Kayan migration, many

5 stories about the Sihan people you should know about

With less than 300 Sihan people in Sarawak (as of 2012), any stories about their legends, customs and histories are very precious and important.As recorded by Benedict Sandin in "Notes on the Sian (Sihan) of Belaga" for the Sarawak Museum journal, the Sihan speak the same language with Punan Bushang

5 amusing Sarawak stories as recorded by colonial officer Ian Urquhart

The Crown Colony of Sarawak was established in 1946 right after the dissolution of the British Military Administration. On Sept 16, 1963, it was succeeded as the state of Sarawak through the formation of the Malaysian federation. Unlike other Crown colonies, Sarawak was perhaps the most unique one. Sarawak continued its pre-existing

Numbul and Bedukun, the Bisaya traditional healing ceremonies

Before there were doctors and nurses, the people of Sarawak relied on traditional healing ceremonies to cure sickness. Every ethnic group has its own healing ceremony, for example the Ibans have their pelian and the Melanau turn to berayun and berbayoh to heal the sick. For the Bisaya people in the Sarawak,

Why did Indonesia give guerrilla training to Sarawak Chinese youths during Konfrontasi?

During Konfrontasi or the Indonesia-Malaysia Confrontation, Indonesia lent their support to Sarawak Chinese. But why? When the formation of Malaysia was proposed, President Sukarno-led Indonesia was not the only who opposed the idea. The Sarawak Communist movement was also against the idea of Malaysia. Instead, the Sarawak Communists supported the idea of unification of

The Lun Bawang legend of a giant man named Temueng

Long time ago, there was a giant man named Temueng and his friend named Pengiran who first lived at Kemaloh in Kalimantan, Indonesia. According to legends, these people were believed to be the ancestors of Lun Bawang people. Benedict Sandin in his paper The Bisayah and Indigenous Peoples of Limbang, Sandin recorded