Saturday, May 12, 2012

King Raden Wijaya

Raden Wijaya (also known as Nararya Sangramawijaya, regnal name Kertarajasa Jayawardhana) (reigned 1293–1309) was a Javanese King, the founder and the first monarch of Majapahit empire. The history of his founding of Majapahit was written in several records, including Pararaton and Negarakertagama. His rule was marked by the victory against the army and the navy of Kublai Khan's Yuan Dynasty of the Mongol empire.

According to Pararaton, Raden Wijaya was the son of Mahisa Campaka, prince of Singhasari.
According to Pustaka Rajyarajya i Bhumi Nusantara, Raden Wijaya was the son of Rakeyan Jayadarma (son of Sunda-Galuh King Prabu Guru Darmasiksa) and Dyah Lembu Tal (daughter of Mahisa Campaka from Singhasari). Rakeyan Jayadarma was poisoned and after her husband's death, Dyah Lembu Tal returned from Sunda-Galuh Kingdom to Singhasari with Raden Wijaya. This story is similar to that of Babad Tanah Jawi which mentioned the founder of Majapahit was Jaka Sesuruh, a son from the king of Pajajaran's which is located in Sunda Kingdom. Jaka Sesuruh ran to the east because of his step brother Siyung Wanara.

Alternatively with Nagarakretagama, Dyah Lembu Tal, also known as Dyah Singhamurti, was a man and the great-grandson of Ken Arok, king of Singhasari (1222–1227) and Ken Dedes, by their son Mahisa Wonga Teleng, and his son Mahisa Campaka (Nara Singhamurti). Because Nagarakretagama was written in 1365, 56 years since the Raden Wijaya's death, popular opinion supports it. Before the founding of Majapahit

In 1289, Kublai Khan sent a demand for tribute to the Kingdom of Singhasari, although the demand was refused by Kertanagara and the messenger was humiliated. Shortly after, there was a rebellion against Singhasari in the country of Jayakatwang. Kertanagara was killed in the attempt to put down the rebellion in 1292, and Raden Wijaya fled to Sumenap, Madura, along with the governor of that region, Aria Wiraraja. There, Raden Wijaya made a plan to establish a new kingdom. Wijaya promised that he would divide Java with Aria Wiraraja if Aria Wiraraja could help him overthrow Jayakatwang's Kediri kingdom.
Wiraraja's son Ranggalawe served as one of Wijaya's senapati (warlord) but in later days he would rebel against the new king. Other famous officers were Lembu Sora and Nambi, both also rebelled against Wijaya respectively after the founding of Majapahit kingdom.

In February 1292 the Mongol emperor of China, Kublai Khan, ordered the preparation of a punitive naval expedition directed against Java. It was partly an act of retaliation for King Kertanagara's refusal to pay tribute to China, and especially for the cruel and contemptuous way in which the Javanese ruler had disfigured the face of an imperial envoy.

The fleet, which is reported to have consisted of 1000 ships, manned with 20,000 soldiers, was ready to leave by November. The journey was hazardous and beset with ill- fortune. Almost immediately after departure the convoy was hit by a typhoon; it was refused entry into Champa, where the loading of fresh supplies had been anticipated, and consequently by the time it approached the harbour at Tuban on Java's north coast the force was already demoralized, many of the soldiers suffering from starvation and dysentery.

The Chinese army was greeted by representatives from the new settlement at Majapahit, who explained that Kertanagara had been defeated and killed a few months previously and that his throne had been seized by a usurper, Jayakatwang of Kediri. The rightful heir, Raden Wijaya, son-in-law of Kertanagara, had established a stronghold at Majapahit and was asking for assistance in the annihilation of their common enemy, in return for official tribute.
An alliance was formed and on 15 March 1293 the combined force launched an attack on Daha (Kediri). The final assault on the capital was made five days later, resulting in the loss of 5000 Kediri lives and the surrender of Jayakatwang. Raden Wijaya then returned to Majapahit, ostensibly to prepare his tribute settlement, leaving his allies to celebrate their victory. Quickly mobilizing his forces again, however, he turned on the Chinese army in a surprise attack, killing many and sending the rest running back to their ships. In this way Raden Wijaya established the kingdom of Majapahit. Seven months later, in November 1293, he was officially enthroned, bearing the royal title Kertarajasa Jayawardhana.

Rule of Majapahit
Raden Wijaya was known as a firm and capable ruler. Aria Wiraraja who had been so useful during the period of the establishment of the kingdom, was given Madura, which was granted a special status. He was also given an autonomous region around Lumajang and the Blambangan Peninsula, and his son, Nambi, was appointed Prime Minister. Raden Wijaya was succeeded by his son, Jayanegara.


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