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Etymology of Malaysia

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Etymology of Malaysia

Bài gửi by kosovohp on Mon Sep 20, 2010 12:57 am

The name Malaysia was adopted in 1963 when the existing states of the Federation of Malaya, plus Singapore, North Borneo and Sarawak formed a new federation.[14] Prior to that, the name itself had been vaguely used to refer to areas in Southeast Asia. A map published in 1914 in Chicago has the word Malaysia printed on it referring to certain territories within the Malay Archipelago.[15] The continental part of the country bore the name Federation of Malaya until 1963, when it federated with the territories of Sabah, Sarawak, and Singapore.[16][17] Politicians in the Philippines once contemplated naming their state "Malaysia", but in 1963 Malaysia adopted the name first.[18] At the time of the 1963 federation, other names were considered: among them was Langkasuka, after the historic kingdom located at the upper section of the Malay Peninsula in the first millennium of the common era.[19]

The origins of the word Melayu itself are disputed. One theory is that it is derived from the Melayu Kingdom,[20] a classical kingdom that existed between the 7th and the 13th on Sumatra.

In 1850 the English ethnologist George Samuel Windsor Earl, writing in the Journal of the Indian Archipelago and Eastern Asia, proposed naming the islands of Indonesia as Melayunesia or Indunesia. He favoured the former[21] for the colonial reference. Following his 1826 expedition in Oceania, the French Navigator Jules Dumont d'Urville invented the terms Malaisia, Micronesia and Melanesia, distinguishing these Pacific cultures and island groups from Polynesia. In 1831, he proposed these terms to The Société de Géographie. For the name Malaisia, Dumont d'Urville had in mind a region including present day Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines. At that time, it was thought that the inhabitants of this region could be designated by the encompassing term "Malay" in line with that era's concept of a Malay race, which contrasts with contemporary definitions by which "Malay" refers to an ethnic group of similar culture who speak the Malay language and live on the east coast of Sumatra

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