Kertanegara of Singasari (full name
Wikrama Dharmatunggadewa), Kritanagara, or Sivabuddha, (died 1292),
was the last and most important ruler of the
Singhasari kingdom of
Java, reigning from 1268 to 1292. Under his rule Javanese trade and
power developed considerably, reaching the far corners of the
3 Conflict with the Mongols
4 Rebellion of Jayakatwang
6 See also
8 External links
Kertanegara was the fifth ruler of Singasari and was the son of the
previous king, Wisnuwardhana (r. 1248–1268). He effectively held
power from 1254 and officially succeeded his father when the latter
died in 1268.:188 The Singasari dynasty had come to power in Java
following the overthrow of the previous
Kediri Kingdom by Ken Arok,
Singhasari ruler in 1222.
Kertanegara was a follower of a mystical Tantric syncretism of
Hinduism and Buddhism, and presented himself as the divine god-king
Shiva and Buddha. Kertanegara celebrated many
religious festivals and commissioned sculptures and metal plaques
during his reign.
Amoghapasa presented by Kertanegara of
Singhasari to the
Melayu Kingdom of East Sumatra
Singhasari reached the height of its power during Kertanegara's rule,
which saw the dramatic expansion of Javanese power into Sumatra, the
Malay Peninsula, and Bali. He extended Javanese involvement in the
lucrative spice trade with the Maluku Islands. He also put down
Java by Cayaraja (Bhayaraja) in 1270 and Mahisha Rangkah
Kertanegara was the first Javanese ruler with territorial ambitions
that extended beyond the island of Java. In 1284, he subjected nearby
Bali to vassalage. Kertanagara managed to form an alliance with
Champa, another dominant state in Southeast Asia.
Late in his reign, the
Pamalayu expedition succeeded in gaining
control of the
Melayu Kingdom in eastern Sumatra, and possibly also
gained control over the
Sunda Kingdom and hegemony over the Strait of
Malacca. Other areas in
Madura Island and
Borneo also offered their
submission to Kertanegara.
Conflict with the Mongols
Following the conquest of Song China, the Mongol
Yuan dynasty sought
to extend its power in Southeast Asia. In 1289 Kublai Khan, Genghis'
grandson, sent his own ambassadors to
Java to ask for tribute.
Kertanegara took grave offense to the request and arrested the envoys.
He branded their faces, cut their ears and sent them back to China
with disfigured faces.
Knowing that the Mongols would send a military expedition to punish
him, Kertanegara tried to solidify his power. Around 1290, he launched
Pamalayu expedition to Sumatra, in order to conquer
Jambi in the
south, one of successor states to Srivijaya.
Jambi was one of the
first Indonesian polities where
Islam had established its presence,
and it already entertained cordial relationships with Yuan China.
Kublai Khan ordered that a strong punitive naval expedition be
launched against the remote equatorial islands in order to punish
Kertanegara in 1292.:198
Rebellion of Jayakatwang
In the meantime, Kertanegara had dominated all of Java, but before the
Mongol fleet arrived, a dramatic political change occurred.
Jayakatwang, prince of Kediri and one of Singhasari's most powerful
vassals, rebelled against his overlord. With the bulk of the Javanese
army in campaign overseas and Singasari's defence weakened,
Jayakatwang seized his chance and launched a coup against
Kertanegara. He launched a diversionary attack to northern East
Java, where his troops drew the remaining
Singhasari troops left on
the island away from the capital. With Kutaraja, the Singhasari
Jayakatwang attacked the capital city unnoticed
from the mountainous southern region.
Kertanegara was killed along with many courtiers in his palace in
Singhasari in May or June 1292.
Jayakatwang then declared himself
Java and king of the restored Kediri Kingdom.:199
Among the few surviving relatives of Kertanegara was his son-in-law,
Raden Wijaya, who fled to Madura Island, where he was sheltered by its
regent, Arya Viraraja. Vijaya then established himself in the lower
Brantas delta, where he built a settlement that would grow into the
mighty empire of Majapahit.:199–200
Raden Wijaya used the oncoming Mongol troops to overthrow Jayakatwang.
Wijaya then betrayed his Mongol allies,:200–201 who were
exhausted after the war, drove them from
Java and established
Majapahit as one of the greatest empires to arise from within the area
covered by the modern territory of Indonesia.
Kertanegara had no male heir, but through his daughter Gayatri
Rajapatni, who married Raden Wijaya, Kertanegara became the ancestor
of Rajasa dynasty, the ruling dynasty of Majapahit. His daughter
Gayatri and his granddaughter
Tribhuwana Wijayatunggadewi would become
queen regnant of Majapahit. His great-grandson
Hayam Wuruk became
the greatest king of Majapahit, which under his rule became one of the
greatest empires in Nusantara.
History of Indonesia
^ a b c Southeast Asia: a historical encyclopedia, from Angkor Wat to
East Timor, Volume 2. ABC-CLIO. 2004. ISBN 978-1-57607-770-2.
^ a b c d e f Cœdès, George (1968). The Indianized states of
Southeast Asia. University of Hawaii Press.
^ a b c d Kieven 2003.
^ a b c d Rossabi, Morris (1988). Khubilai Khan: His Life and Times.
University of California Press. ISBN 978-0-520-06740-0.
^ Irapta 2005, p. 87.
^ Coedès 1968.
Coedès, George (1968). The Indianized States of South-East Asia.
University of Hawaii Press. ISBN 978-0-8248-0368-1.
Irapta, Angelina Chavez (2005). Introduction to Asia: History,
Culture, and Civilization. Rex Bookstore, Inc.
Kinney, Ann R.; Klokke, Klokke; Kieven, Lydia (January 2003).
Worshiping Siva and Buddha: The Temple Art of East Java. University of
Hawaii Press. ISBN 978-0-8248-2779-3.
Timeline of Indonesia history
Indonesia...from ancient times to middle ages[permanent dead link]
Ruler of Java